Before I post my highly anticipated list of my selections for the top 100 albums of the decade, I need to get this out of my system: a brief Friday Five listing of my favorite singles of the decade. (I use “best” and “favorite” interchangeably, because if it’s one of my favorites, chances are I also consider it to be one of the best.)
Also, while you’re waiting for my personal list of the decade’s top albums, please visit the collective ranking by me and six other higher ed music geeks at Higher Ed Music Critics.
OK, on to our countdown. I’ll try to do my best Casey Casem impersonation for you:
5. (tie) I Bet You Look Good on the Dance Floor – the Arctic Monkeys. These bratty Brits came out of nowhere with buzzsaw guitar and hammering rhythm to accompany the clever, come-on vocals of this tune. No other word to describe it but “catchy.”
5. (tie) Fell in Love With a Girl – the White Stripes. I was hooked by Jack White’s chunky power-chord opening. The song’s sudden ending follows the showbiz rule to always leave ’em wanting more. This is the song that made me fall in love with the White Stripes.
4. Beautiful Day – U2. See the bird with the leaf in her mouth/After the flood all the colors came out. A song of hope and renewal.
3. Crazy – Gnarls Barkley. How could anyone listen to this and not get up and dance?
2. Hey Ya – Outkast. Another highly danceable tune, and the only one that compels us to shake it like a Polaroid picture. I am on record as proclaiming this the song of the decade, but upon further review I must place it a rung below…
1. Hurt, Johnny Cash. What a powerful, moving rendition of this Nine Inch Nails tune. The Man in Black, no stranger to pain, heartache and hard life, creates a beautifully dark and haunting melody at the twilight of his career. It’s pretty depressing, though.
Bonus: music video of the decade:
Here It Goes Again (video) – OK Go