You have all been not waiting for this moment, yet the moment has arrived, unanticipated. We’re sneaky like that. Here’s your “top 20.”
Remember, it’s the Pitchfork Media Top 100 Tracks[marks in your underpants] list for 2006. So appreciate the dirty laundry we’ve had to sort to bring you something so amazing, it will receive 5-10 comments.
A small taste of what Brado was craving:
20: Clipse [ft. Pharrell]-“Mr. Me Too” Uh oh, Clipse is beefin’! Kind of chill, like a droopy-eyed psychopath. They kind of sound serious. SCARY! They should have dropped this one, if they wanted respect from 3 Bulls street: “fat ghost melon all up in yr grill/playas and hatas know our record gon’ kill/step to the cantaloupe/horns like an antelope/have a little taste/tha tiniest part/chump’s gonna eat it/ mouthful of fart.” It is fine, but 3B has been talking constant shit about Clipse and we don’t even get a meh-ntion. They are on notice.
UC’s take: I know. I know. I’m meh. Yeah, me too. Actually that song would be better than this. Super meh, which really when you consider what meh is, is exactly the same as meh.
19: Ghostface Killah-“Shakey Dog” Is he sampling Air? This song is a MOVIE. It is definitely awesome. He’s telling an actual story. The casual misogyny and everything else is par for the course, but it really is a tour de force. Totally hypnotizing.
UC’s take: I’m really biased against gangsta rap. I think 99.9% of it is total excrement. But not this song. I was totally caught up in every aspect of this song. The chords, the intensity, the anger, the rapping, the backup singing. Goddamn, it’s awesome. I’m vaguely disappointed that Pinko Punko really liked this as well, because I wanted to prove my ability to assess quality in music, even within a genre I don’t like.
18: Band of Horses-“The Funeral” Every occassion I’m ready for the goddamned funeral. This song is so good. A cinematic masterpiece on a scale both grand and modest. Awesome.
UC’s take: The best song on a great CD deserves at least top 20 status. Heartbreaking and breathtaking. Can I point out, though, that the review makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Pitchfork still ruins a slam dunk. [so true, like the ball just caromed 40 feat into the rafters off the back of the rim, nice showboating a**holes- PP]
17: Herbert-“Something Isn’t Right” Reviewer Drew Daniel claims he “doesn’t know whether to dance or cry.” While we’ll say neither is appropriate, this is an incredibly pleasant song. Perhaps it is getting extra credit for being created out of whole cloth via producer “judo”? Music is not a master’s thesis in knob twiddling. I think this song might be secretly great in an unassuming way.
UC’s take: I like how many different genres are encompassed by this song. There’s something in there for anyone and the fact it is cohesive is testimony to good craftmanship. I think repeated listenings could take this song to really good, but it’s a good.5
16: Hot Chip-“Over and Over” Oh this song? Effortlessly smooth. Extra points because when they go “like a monkey with a miniature cymbal” I think of George Bush, of course the haters all think “like a meh-nky with a meh-niature cymbal” but they’re wrong here. Pretty good.
UC’s take: I think my inner demons like this song because I started singing “over and over and over and over” in my head anticipating its place in the music before it even got there. My outer demons want to come up with something mean to say about this song, but then there was totally this epic battle between the inner and outer demons, with a truce called. Therefore very good.
15: Lupe Fiasco-“Kick Push”First of all, no one has ever landed a skateboard trick ever. Not even Norbiz. Second of all, there is nothing wrong with this song, except I don’t like anything about it besides the senti-meh-nt. Blah. I know, I yam such a stinka!
UC’s take: I thought this song was pretty laughable the first time I heard it, but a week later in a record store, I heard this song and kind of grooved along. Damn me for liking this song.
14: The Knife-“We Share Our Mothers’ Health” I wonder if there is a thing called gothic electroclash? That is what I would call this. I urge you to watch the video, only because this kind of music is not for everyone, but the vibe of the song and the creepy, exceptional animation are paired perfectly. Awesome.
UC’s take: Super creepy and disturbing, but musically unappealing. Clearly interesting, but clearly, not interested.
13: Junior Boys [ft. Andi Toma]-“In the Morning” More nouveau New Wave. Perfectly harmless. Perhaps you can even John Hughes movie it. Good.
UC’s take: This is the sound of an ass trying to sound meh. For an ass, it’s doing a pretty good job, but it’s still an ass. This song merits no further comment.
12: Killer Mike-“That’s Life” Wow. Totally intense and raw, and you just have to listen. Like Chuck D. but with super-strength-enhancing nanobots. Rips Oprah, me, you and everyone a huge, uncomfortable new a**hole. The flipside of the Jarvis Cocker single up above. Possible awesome. Alternatively, the whole Oprah/Bill Cosby as race-traitors seems possible disingenuous and calculated. There is something of the provocateur in Killer Mike, but the Cornell West shout out/big pants argument, I don’t know.
UC’s take: I have to confess to laughing a lot the first time I heard this song, but I didn’t listen to it as being honest. Now I wonder if the anger is somewhat righteous. It’s not hokey when you really stop to listen and I think there’s a good message in there. I’m willing to go on the limb and say that this is awesome.
11: The Hold Steady-“Stuck Between Stations” Probably OK. For some reason the music reminds me of Jackson Browne with some Born to Run Brucie stuff. Maybe some Warren Zevon or talky Lou Reed in there with some smirking. Do any of those things suggest how retro this is? Harmless, no desire to actively cause it to be played again, but might not switch the station if it came on- oh wait, Madonna’s “Hung Up” is on the Mix! *switch*
UC’s take: This is what all the endless hype was about? It’s not bad. Kind of like a bad version of Spoon or a good version of Ted Leo and the Pharmacists. Good rock, but this song has nothing new to say that hasn’t already been said. Too good to be meh, but not too good to be anything better.
10: Christian Falk [ft. Robyn & Ola Salo]-“Dream On” This just doesn’t work. The guilt trip, desperately needed by much of the world, is smeared over what sounds like Sunscreem’s “Love U More” but much worse. Sounds like insincere wank in a way. I’m not convinced they care. Sub meh.
UC’s take: Pitchfork claims this song to be a tearjerker and a strong message song. The only meh-ssage I got from this crap was beware self-indulgent ass.
09: Joanna Newsom-“Emily” I can’t completely defend our Medieval Times loving folk-harpist here, but what I can say is that her 12-minute compositions really need to be listened to as one would imagine listening to a recitation of a long, somewhat interesting poem. This is the one I would have picked for the list. It is interesting, but you have to have an open mind about the whole affair, and also be sitting comfortable, possibly sedated. Very good.
UC’s take: I’m torn on this. Any of the tracks from Milk-Eyed Mender would have fit beautifully in the top 10 singles of any given year. Emily is accessible and super awesome, but I don’t think it belongs on this list, only because it doesn’t sound like a single. It sounds like a movement in a symphony and is hurt from isolation from its fellow movements.
08: Beach House-“Apple Orchard” A wonderful album full of lazy, haunting vocals. I would have chosen “Auburn and Ivory.” Great.
UC’s take: I think Pitchfork actually got this one right, both in the selection of song and its relative position in the list. I am so haunted by the high theremin-like sound that the guitar makes that I don’t even need the killer singing. This song is so awesomely beautiful.
07: Hot Chip-“Boy From School” If the music weren’t so boring, maybe I wouldn’t be asleep right now. Meh? Decent song shackled by lazy dance-crap crap. The end is great.
UC’s take: These guys are clearly talented, but they are using killer melodies for bad purpose. Next time, sell me the song and I’ll produce it using my TRS-80. It will sound better.
06: Clipse-“Trill” Wow, Clipse are so badass! Trent Reznor’s hemorrhoids are more badass. God, I wish P-fork would get the hell off their tip. Dudes, more creepy flow, less constant repeat of the stupid refrain, DJ gonna mix that into oblivion. Bad. Uh oh, I predict Clipse gonna call UC a bitch after he beefs with their shit.
UC’s take: Trill (n): 1. A fluttering or tremulous sound, as that made by certain birds; a warble. Clipse (n): 1. A dufous that has no idea what trill means, signifies, or even broadly resembles. This song is super ass. It’s like butt crack that goes on forever on some hairy European speedo-wearing loser. I wanted to save up whatever lame meh jokes I could muster for this song, but it doesn’t deserve it.
05: Peter Bjorn and John-“Young Folks” I have nothing to say. Fine. Whatever.
UC’s take: The most remarkable thing about this entry is that Marc Hogan was able to write two entire paragraphs about this song. The second most remarkable thing about this entry is that both Marc Hogan and Jason Crock decided that this song was their top track of the year. That is all that is remarkable.
04: TV on the Radio-“Wolf Like Me” I haven’t heard that much TVotR, but this is the least interesting song I have heard from them. It is OK. I expect their album has many better songs that this. Relatively meh.
UC’s take: The video is really good. I mean except for the song which is at best kinda good. I like the slower movement, more than the main body, but I don’t understand the ado regarding TVotR. I expected something more eclectic and interesting. This song easily makes my top 2500 songs of 2006.
03: T.I.-“What You Know” Sounds like DMX on Seconal. Unsurprisingly meh. Play this next to the Ghostface (higher-ranked one) and ask what should be what.
UC’s take: Man, you overlay some lame-ass rapping over a half-decent instrumental line and you get a hit song of the year. I mean it’s listenable, and I suppose likable enough if you ignore the fact that T.I. is super annoying. But c’mon people; the standards have to be higher than this. We all like grilled cheese, but it’s not like I’m serving it to my guests when I have a dinner party.
02: The Knife-“Silent Shout” So I think The Knife perhaps are an electro Tool. Math-y, arty, faceless creepotronic. Videos are key. Song is quite good, but almost too safe for Pitchfork. Not excessively edgy, but obscure enough in its intention and lacking enough in humanity that they can elevate it to this lofty height with calculated cobaggery.
UC’s take: The good news is that after three attempts, I finally listened all the way to the end of the song. The bad news is that I started listening in 2006. True, the video is good and meshes with the music well, but then again so does the iTunes visualizer. I am so emotionless about this song that I yearn to dislike it. Then at least I would feel. Meh.
AND our number one BEST track of the year:
PFork: Merry Christmas, Pinko.
PP: Thanks, P-Fork. Sorry I think you guys are total choads. I take it all back.
PFork: We got you a present.
PP: You didn’t have to to.
PFork: Open it.
PP: What is it?
Pfork: It’s my dick in a box.
PP has left the chatzors.
01: Justin Timberlake [ft. T.I.]-“My Love”
Let me get 10% more serious for a second. This song has some generic cheezy™ techno backwash fortified with some super low end junk in its trunk. A boring TI rap. An incredibly slinkwagon JT rockin’ his Capt. Smooth. Functionally, this song is indistinguishable from Pussycat Dolls’ “Buttons.” But, I am sure the sausage festival that is P-fork can only rock some JT jock, cuz, yo, them dudes are serious.
I feel a great disturbance in the force. Like 1000 tiny boners popping into existence only to be suddenly extinguished after the supposed invite to the Chi-town-show after-party never arrived; in its place the standard 8×10 head shot, “best wishes to P-Fork, JT.” Pitchfork was never had so easily before. It’s not a moon, Pitchfork, it’s a planet destroying meh-th star.
UC’s take: In the spirit of Jon Lovitz’s The Critic, I present to you five diseases I would rather have than having to listen to this song again: 1. West Nile Virus (only lethal less than 5% of the time); 2. Norwalk Virus (acute gastroenteritis only lasts 10-57 hours); 3. Primary Vocabularyitis (although fictional, it would allow me to write better rhymes for JT than TI can); 4. Measles (hopefully with associated temporary hearing loss); 5. Alexithymia (at least I wouldn’t have to explain why this is the most meh song ever).