So last time I went all crowd-pleasey (or as crowd-pleasey as I can manage) with tasteful eclecticism. And this time… well, this time I’ve probably swung too far in the opposite direction and won’t be pleasing anyone whatsoever. Yes, folks, I’ve gone pop. Mainstream, well-known, pure and simple every time. Forgive me my synths, I know exactly what I do. Sadly…
Track and artist names (and a few short attempts at justification) after the jump…
1. Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine – The Only Living Boy In New Cross: Hello, good evening, welcome… to nothing much. (I’ve always wanted to start a playlist thusly.) Get Carter to shake out the cobwebs, shall we?! An exhilarating celebration of our capital city’s diversity. Gawd bless London.
2. Furniture – Brilliant Mind: The best one-hit wonder ever? It’s certainly up there. (And what’s better pop-wise than a one-hit wonder? Nothing, that’s what.)
3. OMD – Tesla Girls: Well, it’s just ridiculous, isn’t it? But I do love the bonkersness of referencing Nikolai Tesla in a plinky-plonky pop ode to sexy laydeez.
4. Patrick Wolf – Bluebells: One of my favourite popstars of recent years. Probably subscribes to his equally theatrical forebear’s maxim that “ridicule is nothing to be scared of”. Definitely looking at the stars, possibly from the gutter.
5. Blur – On Your Own: I love Blur in off-kilter pop mode. This may be my favourite bleepy, droney, rowdy-vocalled song of theirs.
6. New Order – Face Up: I seem to have a thing for white boys who can’t really sing. I wonder if it’s narcissism. This is a big downhill tumble of a tune – with a satisfyingly vitriolic ‘f*** you’ of a lyric.
7. MGMT – Time To Pretend: Probably the only track on this list that’s verging on cool. And it has a lyric dealing with that very subject matter. Ooh, post-modern. Perhaps.
8. Santogold – L.E.S. Artistes: Wasn’t she set to be the next big thing when this came out? Among Hoxton hipsters anyway. (So maybe this is verging on cool too.) I’m not sure I’ve ever heard anything else by her, but have a vague recollection of her, like, totally reinventing herself by… changing her name to Santigold. Hm.
9. Robyn – Be Mine!: As we all know, for at least the last decade (and probably since Abba’s heyday), some of the best pure pop has come out of Scandi-land (see also my earworm this week). Here’s Sweden’s Robyn. The spoken-word bit guts me every time: “I just miss you. That’s all.” Sob!
10. Pet Shop Boys – I Don’t Know What You Want But I Can’t Give It Any More: A title both utterly meaningless and utterly profound. A bit like the Pet Shop Boys’ entire back catalogue then. The best pop group of the last 30 years. You can disagree with me but you’d be wrong.
11. Saint Etienne – Hobart Paving: Pop as lullaby. Bliss.
Hello, good evening, welcome and goodbye. x