And we continue! Just a note: OK means OK. Meh means meh. Neither category reflects well on Ye Olde Pitchforke Cobagges. We continue with our thesis that no one has a greater distance between their actual readers and the readers they perceive in their feverish minds. Most likely they perceive their readers to be themselves. Oh wait, this is same in most media.
Here is a little hint for Time magazine. Let x=your readership. Consider the difference 300 million-x. 300 million-x >>>>> x.
81: My Robot Friend [ft. Antony]-“One More Try” Their MySpace page had me with their cover of Luna’s “23 Minutes in Brussels” (if they only would have dropped the annoying percussion in light of their other great touches). Antony can in the right setting have the voice of a divalicious drag queen. That is what this setting is, yet something else is going on here. Hmm. Awesome.
UC’s take: I waited a minute to try and get this song from their Myspace page. Eventually the connection failed. Rating – failed
80: Nelly Furtado [ft. Timbaland]-“Promiscuous” Certain smartasses would ask: “what does selling your soul sound like?” Others would respond: “like a hit.” Still more others would respond: “lifeless and ass-some.”
UC’s take: Why did everybody love this song? Is it because everyone wants to make it with a hot Canadian? I guess it’s kind of OK and catchy, but there’s nothing distinguishing about it. Wait we have a rating for that …. MEH!
79: Cam’ron-“Weekend Girl” Kind of one of those Hip-hop ballads. Good for what it is, but it is what it is. Tough genre. Nice Fancy Feast citation. Kind of feel embarrassed that someone might catch you listening to it. Like I imagine people did with the original LL jam. Actually P-fork should be embarrassed.
UC’s take: How many rap songs make me think of Afternoon Delight? The lyrics are just terrible, but kind of funny bad. I don’t know why, but the AM gold chords kind of make this song fun. So bad, it’s good. Wait, it’s the other thing. Bad.
78: Be Your Own Pet-“Adventure” Sounds like teenaged Fiery Furnaces. Even I have to give props to that. She’d be helped if her voice we’re a little more affected. You need that to pull off the the whole deal. Because everything else sounds so total pro. Should it be this easy? Proggy-leaning indie rock for dummies? Good.
UC’s take: Pitchfork love, LOVES, Be Your Own Pet. Bad omen. This could be like the ultimate creative output of the entire Myspace community, but you know what, it sounds amateurish and more like Dora the Explorer than real music. It just sucks.
77: Jamie Lidell-“Multiply (In a Minor Key)” I like Otis Redding too. God I hate Philip Sherburne. Sub meh.
UC’s take: I love Randy Newman. Sweet. Oh, just wait, it’s Jamie Lidell? With two ‘l’s? Huh. Well, the good news is that there is one more new song to play at the wedding/bar-mitzvah/kwanzafest when you have the out-of-town relatives all show up to light the candle, or whatever the hell you call those people up for. I guess credit goes to P’fork for taking something intrinsically uncool and unhip and pretending that it’s a masterful track. Pretty good song, though. In the year of Gnarls Barkley, though, it’s just meh. Maybe meh^1.1
76: Baby Cham [ft. Akon]-“Ghetto Story (Remix)” I always feel with dancehall-like stuff I am just getting yelled at. Not so much here, but, I guess I don’t like dancehall at all. Except “Sexy lady gonna party with us…” or whatever SP says. Meh.
UC’s take: I’m starting to get really wary of songs that include [ft. XXX] in their title. Oh, this is just awful. Terrible. Horrendous. I mean Sufjan Stevens released a CD of new material with super genius songs, and none of them rank on a list. But this does? Why? WHO MADE EVERYONE SO FREAKING STUPID? Super ass bad.
75: The Killers-“When You Were Young” Fine for the radio and teh l4m3 sleepovers. Not for this list. Meh.
UC’s take: Any other year and even the best Killers song wouldn’t deserve to rank in the top 100. Given the list we’re working with, it’s amazing that Killers ended up this low. I mean the song is barely above average Pop/Rock for the trying to get laid crowd, but it comes across as a breath of fresh air within this list. It’s technically meh, but good enough.
74: The Pipettes
“Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me” I don’t love, but it has its charms, as we have discussed. I would probably put 10 songs from the new Camera Obcura album in front of this one. Super derivative ironic Brit girl-group shenanigans. OK.
UC’s take: Finally, a great song. No a f*cking great song. This would be in my top 10 of my own list, and I’ve already raved about it at SoftD. Love it love it love it love it love it. Those big soaring choruses give me shivers. Super mega awesome.
73: Poni Hoax-“Budapest” Drone disco. Wouldn’t be so bad if you didn’t always think the monotonous opening weren’t gonna bust into awesome Funky Town (Lipps Inc!). Not for everyone. Yet here’s P-Fork: “drone disco– like black mascara on club queens you wouldn’t let blow you for all the coke in NYC– isn’t for the faint of fashion.” Dominique we lurve ya, don’t try so hard. Creepy and interesting.
UC’s take: This doesn’t suck as much as a would expect a song characterized as “drone disco”. I mean being not that bad is a pretty good compliment to dear Dominique Leone and his French friends. Or should I say amies. I can kind of get into this and it’s clearly interesting. Interesting and actually good. Quel surpris!
72: Built to Spill-“Goin’ Against Your Mind”Totally and completely unremarkable. 500 other BtS songs are probably hanging their heads in shame right now. OK.
UC’s take: BtS songs usually range from not bad to pretty damn good. I guess this song is not bad. Is this the best song from their new CD? Is that why I never bothered getting it? OK, but surprisingly uninteresting.
71: Candi Staton-“His Hands”Traditional opening, yet tasteful. The slow burn, but with some space in the background. Tasteful alt-R/B. Playing off James Brown’s “It’s a Man’s World” but with off stage stuff every so almost there announcing that it is on Astralwerks. Kind of awesome.
UC’s take: Oh, I do like this. It has delicacy, richness, and chocolate all rolled up into one very good cookie. I mean, if the song were a bake-off cookie that is. This is great demonstration that less can be more. I think it’s awesome. Not super awesome. Just regular awesome.
70: El Perro del Mar-“God Knows (You Got to Give to Get)” Cross 60’s girl-group aesthetics with Kate Bush voice and taste for theatricality. Good. There are better tracks on the CD.
UC’s take: I really like her voice. I wish the song were a little more interesting, because there is definitely something to it. Maybe more shoop shoops in the background. Or a second melodic theme. Great wall of sound effect, and don’t you go telling me that this isn’t a wall of sound goddammit! Good but not interesting.
69: Oneida-“Up With People”Maybe if you are gonna go 8 minutes, don’t start so grating. OK, it changes 10 seconds in. Oh, it’s dance rock. Can you please play yourself out? Maybe if you made me actually want to dance. F***, dudes, just fill it with robots! Ass-some.
UC’s take: As inspired by my car’s failure to start. Yuck. Please make it better. Wait on it. Wait on it. Oh, thank god. It got better. Nope. It didn’t. Ass.
68: Klaxons-“Gravity’s Rainbow”Annoying progtastic techno rock. “Come with me/come with me/we’ll travel to infinity.” An infinity of sub-meh. Purposeless subliminal wank. Worse that overt wank.
UC’s take: Damn you Modest Mouse, this is what you have wrought! I tried to find some good things about this song. There’s this five second part with good piano. That was it. Almost interesting, but infinitely meh (Damn, PP beat me to the joke).
67: E-40 [ft. Keak Da Sneak]-“Tell Me When to Go”
So I think the new rule is the more insane or squiggly or ridiculous a hip-hop track is, the “better” it is. This is the Three Bulls! of rap. Does that mean it is OK? Probably not. Interesting.
UC’s take: I was going to pretend that I’m all open-minded about hip-hop and willing to appreciate it for what it is. But when it comes down to it, there is good music. There is meh music. There is ass music. This is ass music. Oh, except for the ghost ride the whip lyric, which I like.
66: Swan Lake-“All Fires”Grayson Currin suggests that perfection has fallen apart in this song, unless we are gonna get back to the garden, then alas perfection shall not be discerned in this song. Meh.
UC’s take: This song starts out really good in that way that you anticipate greatness by the end. Sadly, it plateaus at good and never improves. I like the overall Canadianess to the sound, inasmuch as Broken Social Scene and Arcade Fire sound Canadian. It could have been great if it developed, but it’s just good.
65: Liars-“Let’s Not Wrestle Mt. Heart Attack”
Is that a didgeridoo (sp?)? Abrasive creepfest morphs into…abrasive creepfest. Effective. Interesting and completely inaccessible. Nice pineapple in the vid, cobwads.
UC’s take: True story. I’m in lab playing this song, and people started to evacuate. Whether it was that terrible sound, or the ominous creepiness of it all, I cannot say. I was tempted to join them, but am honour-bound in duty to rate this song. I rate it horrible and sinister. Pitchfork, afraid to admit that they don’t understand the hype, are obliged to create the hype. How they sleep at night is beyond me.
64: Prince-“Black Sweat”I find the G-funk synth signal tone intro to be grating. But then it dribbles into totally minimalist Prince squigwaddle 5000 atmospheres of pressure glam slam P-rince funk. OK to pretty good.
UC’s take: I never really got into Prince. I’m sure that if you like Prince, you love this song. And like 99.9% of you out there like Prince. But not me. It’s meh masquerading as arty.
63: Figurines-“The Wonder”I think all I need to say is Elephant 6-ish nerdlington vocals, but straight-ahead riffo indie rocko. OK for what it is, not really a monstrous slab of indie rock amazingness. My guess is they picked it because it is Danish and probably an import. Everything is better on comped import. Why not just put a limited edition 500 platter box set in this slot, you know one that is only accessible via the International Space Station. Fine.
UC’s take: Shouldn’t this group be called Figurines 43 or something like that? I’ll bet that boys aged 17-21 love this song. They also probably think they are kind of punk and cool. Well, they’re not. They’re tools. This is the music for tools. Meh.
62: The Field-“Over the Ice” Has that one scratchy beat sound that your eardrums itch. Tim Finney says “‘Over the Ice'” sounds the way a rave does if you close your eyes: dazzling lasers become amorphous pools of color, and sharp sonics devolve into brooding clouds of intensity, still pulsing at the same urgent pace, but somehow kindlier, more nurturing.” 1000 times no. An abomination of boring, derivative minimalist crap.
UC’s take: I hate having to listen to this sh*t. People, the great minimalist compositions have already been written. By really awesome composers that know what they’re doing. Move on. There is nothing more to see here. Have some coffee. Eat a cookie. Read a book. Study. Study hard. And then write something new. And hopefully not ass, like this song.
61: The Mountain Goats-“Woke Up New”I kind of wish the lyrics were more sophisticated than some helpless wang waking up by himself. Way too precious to not be off-putting. Ballad of the “nice guy.” You are helpless without her, chump, because of the patriarchy. Learn how to function like a human without someone to wipe your ass. Maybe it is OK. Lyrics by F. Gump. Not OK.
[Ed note: UC might just like the plucking and not hear anything else]
UC’s take: Sweet plucking guitar. Was there anything else in this song? I recall hearing a melodic and very pleasant voice. Is he sad? I don’t know. Probably. Do I care? Not really. Are they boring? Probably. Do I care? Still, no. Guitar good.
60: Zeigeist-“Tar Heart”Sounds like Kate Bush electrovamping on a scooter between “Bizarre Love Triangle” and and drinks with Danielle Dax. Good.
UC’s take: This isn’t really music for me, but I can appreciate that it is interesting and good. I would never buy it, but when her voice gets high it almost reminds me of Joanna Newsom, and that always earns a full pass. B+
59: Nelly Furtado-“Maneater”Tonnes better than “Promiscuous,” but does this list need two tracks by Nelly F? I’m starting to guess how this works. Massively inaccessible chumpwaddery is OK. Popstar singles basically quoting “James Brown is Dead” style techno (hey JT!) featuring Vampira electronically hybridizing you with machinery. Totally awesome and pleasant and accessible indie rock tunes, not OK. This song is fine for the radio, and soulless. Fine for the club that no one here or at P-Fork goes to.
UC’s take: Points for the intro not sucking. Minus points for the rest of the track sucking. Is that really Nelly Furtado, because I know that she is capable of singing using a real non-manipulated voice and lyrically. I guess the chorus sucks less than the alyrical non-chorus part. Poor Nelly. This song might help her get rich, but at what cost? Certainly the cost of meh.
58: Girl Talk-“Smash Your Head”I found the Girl Talk record interesting, but a little too ADD for me. He never hits a groove and goes with it, and many of the songs just sound like J-Kwon’s “Tipsy” with an Elton John break. Also the sound is so tinny and trebly like the afterhum of 1000 RCA console grandma TVs. Meh (you blow 1000 samples, better be better than OK).
UC’s take: Pitchfork claims that “we’re all supposed to be sick of such beat-matched juxtapositions by this point, but …” and then goes on to laud this track with its Tiny Dancer mashup. Yes, pitchfork. We are all sick of it. Just because there is an awesome song embedded within your absolute craptastic song doesn’t make the rest of it good. Elton John is still awesome. You are meh^meh.
57: Kleerup [ft. Robyn]-“With Every Heartbeat”Fluffy and fine. When am I exactly supposed to listen to this and in what context would I ever tell anyone about this song to exhort them to listen? Answer: no context. Meh.
UC’s take: This song has a really good beat. As I listened and tapped my foot, I said “meh” on each beat. It sounded better that way. Even the string exposition was meh. Meh meh meh meh meh. Sigh.
56: Booka Shade-“In White Rooms”Yay Ibiza! Yay itchy eardrums! Yay Philip Sherburne! At least it gives you a bouncy ball beat to grab onto for the club, however after 20 minutes you might need to beg for death. Fine. I think this track illustrates the point about genres so disparate, perhaps there is no reason to consider them together on the same list. Hide the cutlery when UC listens.
UC’s take: Here’s what I hear: clip clop clip clop clip clop. There have got to be massive numbers of people that really like all kinds of modern music that think this song is absolute crap. And then there’s like 10 people that writhe in ecstasy when I hear this. But why do those 10 people get to put all of their favourite music on the Pitchfork list and the throngs of people that just like good normal indie rock are voiceless? Ass.
55: The Blow-“Parentheses” Yay squiggly retro nouveau girl group! OK, but there are probably 10 better tracks on the Camera Obscura album. Just this side of being too precious. Good.
UC’s take: Hand claps are good. Bouncy girl pop is good. Interesting electronic flourishes are good. Clever lyrics are good. Musical transitions are good. Yes, this is much much better. I think it’s almost awesome. Maybe if it grew on me, but it is lacking that little knife twist of unforgettability. Meaning just very good.
54: Lily Allen-“Smile”I love the sample but not the tune. LDN stands so far above this one. She’s so mean here it’s worth it. It’s real. Decent.
UC’s take: Pretty likable and in this climate, well above average. I still don’t like the production on her voice, but that’s a pretty generic complaint for me in the genre. The la la las are very cute. Pretty good.
53: Asobi Seksu-“Thursday”Japanese sounding Cocteau Twins-ish to Cranberries like opener, but with more chimeyness. I like this album but she might be too flat all over this one for a lot of people. Many better songs on the album. OK.
UC’s take: This is one of my tracks of the year. I love the driving beat, the soaring climax of the chorus, the cool guitars and keyboards working in the background. I feel inspired to greatness. Or to at least finish reviewing this otherwise putrid list. Awesome.
52: Barbara Morgenstern-“The Operator”Minimalist gameboy sounding synthpop is not new or interesting anymore. Oh, you didn’t get the Meh-mo?
UC’s take: Ha ha. Meh-mo is funny. I love how the song began before it got super electronic-y. More singing and less bleeps. Listen to Stereolab. See how they’re awesome. Get them to fix your song. It’s just that there is a really great song in here. The “take me to the operator” part is so good and then the transition to the crappy unintelligible part is so abrupt. I still think it’s good.
51: Scott Walker-“A Lover Loves”No link to this one. I will go out on a limb and guess “OK?”
UC’s take: I listened to a different song. It was totally fine and unremarkable.
50: Voxtrot-“Mothers, Sisters, Daughters, and Wives”Generic strummy straight-ahead indie pop. Rob Mitchum says Voxtrot loves the Smiths. We have different ideas about what that may mean and how one would go about implementing it. In my world, you would start by being good. A glaring waste of chiming-ness. Meh. Holla, Austin!
UC’s take: I can imagine buying a CD and hearing this song and thinking how disappointed I would be if this were the best song on the CD. Now, I wouldn’t return the CD, I’d be like, well it’s totally fine and inoffensive and I guess some people might think it’s totally fine as well. But I would be bummed if this was the acme of said CD. You have to think that with all that obvious musical ability, they could right something a little more interesting than that, right? Right? Meh thinks not.
49: The Game-“It’s Okay (One Blood)”Wait, let me get my rap-beef flow chart out, and affect a pose of caring. No. Some nice rips on the overrated Jay-Z (settle, Jigga! I’m just playin- or am I?).
UC’s take: Yo, game! You thought I cared? Well, I don’t. Keep on snapping your fingers, but you suck on the West Coast and on the East Coast. I checked on the East side, the West side, and the B-side. Game, I see meh people.
48: Cassie-“Me & U”Fine for the radio. Here the autotune is more an affect, but how do we know. Wow, she wants him to tell her how he likes it? But it will just be between them?An R/B novelty. Fine to put you out of your drive-time commercial suffering. A bauble-like turd of no consequence. The most unfortunate entry until now (but not the worst) Meh.
UC’s take: While folding laundry, I decided to write a song that is significantly better and more interesting than this song. You all know the tune. Sing along: Mary had a little meh whose fleece was white as meh. And everywhere that Mary went, her meh was sure to go. It followed her to school one day, which was against the meh. It made the students laugh and play to see a meh at school. There now, isn’t that better?
47: The Rapture-“Whoo! Alright-Yeah…Uh-Huh”Uh oh, The Rapture. Someone tell the captain to alert UC to extreme boredom. Oh, my bad, it’s not “House of Jealous Lovers.” OK, but when is the dance-rock conceit gonna be played out? And by when I mean how long ago. Good.
UC’s take: If this is what the rapture is like, I hope I’m left behind. I mean, sure there are all kinds of interesting things going on in the song, but I really don’t follow along. The best part of the song is the end. Interesting, yet still meh.
46: Liars-“The Other Side of Mt. Heart Attack”Previously the Liars were seen on this list trying to get mom to throw a blood clot. I’d like to know what this one sounds like, in comparison. I’d like to know if they get less creepy. N/A
UC’s take: I’ll take the mulligan as well. I don’t blame Pitchfork for liking The Liars. I blame them for sharing this information with the rest of us.
45: Beyoncé-“Irreplaceable”I wish B would sometimes write lyrics instead of just singing dialog. Actually sounds forced with the lingo. A joke. Kind of terrible. No, actually terrible.
UC’s take: Haven’t we already reviewed this song? Have I mentioned that Beyoncé is very pretty? Eh, it’s OK.
44: Arthur Russell-“Springfield (DFA Remix)”My ne-meh-sis returns. Is he putting clarinet through a vocoder? I think there are some OK bits in here. More than a little bit of a slog to even get to them. Vocals are interesting. Borderline not good.
UC’s take: Let’s be honest. I was never going to like this song. The fact I listened to the whole song is purely a testimony to my commitment and perseverance. Finally around minute 4 the song actually gets tolerable. And then it sucks again. And the singing part is good. Minutes 0-4: Ass. Minutes 4-8: Good. Overall: Meh, but with a high standard deviation.
43: Fujiya & Miyagi-“Collarbone”I can’t see ever wanting to listen to this again. Harmless. OK.
UC’s take: I enjoyed listening to this song. Big bass is fun. The beat is good, but I think if it were a little faster, I’d like it more. It gets really fun when the organ synths kick in. Good with potential to be better with repeated listening.
42: Ciara-“Promise”More with the “tell me what you like” and the breathy talking. “Goodies” I can see. Aaliyah she is not. Why the hell is this on this list??
UC’s take: Shouldn’t the songs keep getting better as the numbers get smaller? When was the last awesome song in this list? I really think that Ciara can sing and probably is talented. Get a better songwriter, girl. Meh.
41: Ghostface Killah [ft. Trife]-“Be Easy”Cherchez la Ghost earned GF some respect from me. Maybe a little too much “n-this, n-that, bitch-n, I’m so mad at everyone.” Settle, dude, I’ll let you win at Parcheesi next time. OK.
UC’s take: I have a hunch that this song is really popular among white 20-something guys. It’s interesting and good and probably the best hip hop song I’ve heard this year. I therefore give it my highest hip hop rating, good.
40: Lily Allen-“LDN”UC has a chance to redeem his utterly ridiculous Shaggy comment. The ska sample here actually reminds me of old school Kenya Dance Mania stalwarts Maroon Commandos. AWESOME.
UC’s take: Just because I made a Shaggy comment doesn’t mean that I didn’t like the song. But just because I liked the song doesn’t mean I think it’s awesome. I like the video more than the song on its own. She does have a je ne s’ais quoi and I did watch this a bunch of times. Hmm, maybe it is really good.
39: Lil Wayne-“Georgia…Bush”Calling George Bush “Georgia” perhaps is not the best way to subvert patriarchy, but the rest of this is 100% f*** you, eat it. Dripping with anger and hatred, appropriately so. Good.
UC’s take: This song totally works for me. The creativity, the anger, the righteousness, it all works. Yes, they may be low-hanging fruit, but they are juicy citrusy fruits nevertheless. Awesome.
We’ll keep trucking for you til the very end!