Archive for the ‘2000’ Category

I would like to start this post off with a quote from Tom Reynolds in his book ‘I hate myself and want to die’; “Having listened to numerous drug songs over the years and studied their critical analyses, I’ve concluded that they basically fall into two categories: 1. stark, 2. harrowing. Music writers use these descriptors alternately when writing about drug songs. What separates the two normally depends on whether the songwriters were themselves addicted. The Velvet Underground’s ‘Heroin‘, for example, is ‘stark’ because Lou Reed was once an addict. Billy Joel’s ‘Captain Jack‘ is ‘harrowing’ because he wasn’t.” That being said, I can assure you that ‘Feel Good Hit Of The Summer‘ is stark due to the fact that it effectively tells a true account of the band’s appetite for drugs.

Rock rumours state that the band was ingested the entire content of the song’s lyrics in one night. Allegedly, they consumed “Nicotine, valium, vicodin, marijuana, ecstasy and alcohol” before following it up with “c-c-c-c-c-cocaine“. If these rumours are true, it not only shows that the odds of QOTSA splitting following an overdoes in the band is unlikely, but it also shows how raw the band can be. A stark drug song, such as this, shows great honesty in the songwriter for being able to talk about drugs in this way. But in this case, it’s just a fun song.

I’ll be honest, if I could teach ‘Writing A Hit Song 101’, I would use this as an example. This song is not complicated at all. The verse consists of one chord, as does the chorus. It features a fast and sloppy guitar solo, a very simple and straightforward drum beat and lyrics which only consist of 8 unique words. In short, this is musical mastery. If every song was like this, not only would it be clear that there are a LOT of users out there, but it would show that good songs are not a thing of yesterday.

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Mosquito Song

When I first heard this I imagined the context of the song and I was honestly scared. It has a very scary premise, but the musical direction taken in this song is amazing. The guitar is unorthodoxly tuned down 2 steps and there is an orchestral arrangement present as well. However, most people that listen to this song will not recognise this as a Queens Of The Stone Age song. It is very strange for the band, but the music in this song is absolute perfection. Many musicians dream of creating a song as good as this, and quite frankly, many never will.

Little Sister

Can Queens Of The Stone Age make a bad song? I’ll say no. This upbeat song is characterised by a cowbell of all instruments, and features a famous mini-solo following the chorus. Josh Homme’s voice in this song proves how good of a singer he is. The chorus shows how amazingly ‘rock’ his voice can get without becoming cliched. Truly Queens Of The Stone Age are an amazing band that will be around for years since they continue to churn out great songs such as this.

Burn The Witch

It is in this song that Queens Of The Stone Age show their stoner-rock roots. The intro is typical of the genre, in which a strong beat is present and a small riff as well which then goes on to anchor the entire song. The distorted vocals again portray Homme’s perfect vocals, and frankly this song is the epitome of rock music.

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100. Flat Beat – Mr. Oizo

This countdown is going to start with a little bit of rule bending. To be fair, this song was first released in May of 1999 as a single, but did not appear on Mr. Oizo’s debut album Analog Worms Attack until the following year. The song first came to public attention thanks to a commercial for Levi’s in the UK in early 2000, where people became enthralled with a puppet named ‘Flat Eric’ head-banging to the track. The track itself starts with a fantastically awkward drum beat which then morphs into the song’s repeating riff. But after only a few seconds, the bass line starts. It is at that point where the song really starts. It’s the sole presence of this repetitive, yet strangely alluring bass line, that thumps in rhythm before almost sliding into that one singular note roughly 10 times, that makes the song. Very rarely are songs characterised by one repeating instrumental hook, but in the case of Flat Beat, it is. This song is able to represent all that is stereotypical about techno by repeating the same sounds over and over. Now, while that is quite usually a bad thing, in this song, it reaches the perfect balance. At no stage does the riff get old, at no stage does the beat get old and at not stage does the song become predictable. The song is mixed around at precisely the right time, and with such precision in the mixing, the song not only become stuck in your mind, but it also starts to grow on you.

Close Competitors

Analog Worms Attack

When I picked the songs for this countdown, I made sure I would increase the variety by only picking one song per artist. Now to be fair, Mr. Oizo is a great musician, but I’m no mad fan of techno. But I saw this song first in early January this year whilst watching Rage at an ungodly hour. Dizzee Rascal introduced this song, along with another great Mr. Oizo track, as songs that changed him as a musician. That other song was the titular track to his album; Analog Worms Attack. Again, whilst being no real fan of techno, that song also spoke to me. The song starts out with an almost clichéd introduction of the effects that will be used in the song; ‘Effects 1. Effects 2. Effects 24.’ before going into the drum beat and the reverberating hook that repeats for a large majority of the song. The underlying broken vocal samples seem to make the song seem almost raw and primal whilst still maintaining an element of sheer badassery that seems to only ever be encountered in French house and techno music.

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