Saturday, January 26, 2008

TOP 100 SONGS OF 2007: 41-50

We've now made it into the Top 50! Excellent! You guys are in for a treat. Sorry for the long wait; my headphones broke and I had to procure a new pair. Fear not, that has been done and I can now listen to music unbothered by a missing half of the song. Now, here we go...

50. Scala & Kolacny Brothers – Fake Plastic Trees (Radiohead cover) (Sendspace link)
Album: One-Winged Angel

I've heard a number of covers - Alanis, KT Tunstall - and this one is the best. The choir sound works perfectly with the quiet piano backing for a song that's as enigmatic lyrically as any other. Scala's mix of voice tones shows a great improvement here over their earlier albums, and there's real soul to it. And when they reach a climax, it's heavenly.

49. Dragonette - I Get Around (Sendspace link)
Album: Galore

A great beat mixed with Dragonette's lyrics that follow their sexual themes. This time, it's a clandestine relationship between two people who run in similar circles. It's weird how Drqagonette can make what seems like a sleazy moment seem so fun, but I have a feeling it has a lot to do with Martina Sorbara's vocals and the heavy synths

48. Calexico - Ocean of Noise (Arcade Fire cover) (Sendspace link)
Album: Arcade Fire - Intervention (single)

The rare cover that is far superior to the original, Calexico is perfectly suited to this song. What was a bit of a dull spot on Neon Bible becomes a soul-tunning love song, with Joey Burns bringing great emotion to the song where the original vocals fell flat emotionally. The sadness, the desperation here is great. Probably my cover of 2007 too, had I made that list and kept track of my covers.

47. Eisley - Invasion (Sendspace link)
Album: Combinations

The gem in Combinations' crown, this is a joy to listen to. The creepy feeling obtained without the common quiet style is refreshing, and the chorus is wonderful. "You, you, you would take the breath from my throat and you, you you would take the cherished people that I love." That bit is sung marvellously, with fear and desperation mixed in with accusation. The rest of the lyrics are great as well, mixing calm with horror.

46. Feist - 1 2 3 4 (Sendspace link)
Album: The Reminder

There is a reason Apple picked this song for its commercial and, thus, caused it to be simultaneously everywhere at all times. It's a really good song. Leslie Feist's voice is on top form here, with some nice lyrics and horns and is just a really nice song. You probably already know.

45. Jason Mraz - The Beauty in Ugly (Sendspace link)
Album: Single

Reworked from one of Mraz's unreleased songs to be a theme for Ugly Betty's "Be Ugly" campaign, this song illustrates the themes of that series perfectly, refusing to allow physical beauty to be the only measure of worth in this thin-led world. The chorus is inspiring, ordering those downtrodden by imperfect looks to 'own [their] name and stand up tall'.

44. Alanis Morissette - My Humps (Fergie cover) (Sendspace link)
Album: Internet Release

There are very few, if any, moments funnier in 2007 than Alanis Morissette's cover and accompanying video of Fergie's ridiculous song, "My Humps". Taking a hyped-up hiphop song about bling and boobs and turning it into a piano-led ballad it highlighted exactly how ridiculous the song is, while Alanis takes a moment to laugh a little at herself and her maudlin image as well. The video is especially hilarious, featuring Alanis' take on Fergie's original.

43. The Sunshine Underground - Commercial Breakdown (Sendspace link)
Album: Raise the Alarm

A great rocking song about, what else, the overcommercialisation of the modern age, and the frustrations inherent in trying to survive with a soul. A moment, where "I used to think that these things happen for a reason" just perfectly illustrates the confusion and hopelessness of it.

42. The Gossip - Careless Whisper (Wham! cover) (Sendspace link)
Album: Radio 1 Established 1967 (Covers compilation)

This song is just a vehicle for amazing covers. First Ben Foldss & Rufus Wainwright's soulful duet of it I found, and now Gossip lead singer Beth Ditto utterly owns it in a powerful cover recorded for the Radio 1 tribute album released this year. The music has a real dance feel to it, and the emotion in Ditto's voice makes the song work really well, bringing in regret and sadness while never losing its power.

41. Camera Obscura - Hands Up Baby (Sendspace link)
Album: If Looks Could Kill EP

A simple, understated b-side to If Looks Could Kill (EP), this song is about a couple of truly broken people. A duet, from the point of view of a man with a gun and his kidnapped ex with an acid tongue. Lines like, "you don't remember things I can't forget" say more than whole stanzas of other songs. Neither of these people are happy, and both wouldn't be sad to just let it end and the darkness here is pretty powerful. A wonderful song.

We've started into the bigger deals here, and I'm very happy to be sharing these with you guys. And remember, if you enjoy these songs, I urge you to check out their artists!