Saturday, August 22, 2009

Playing with the Pitchfork list

I agree with my friend Mike that Pitchfork's list of the top 500 singles of the aughts is very strong, and in fact I find myself nodding more vigorously the lower the numbers get. Pitchfork's #1 choice is perfect and actually the whole top 10 or 20 are a nice, varied list. There are a lot of songs there I adore like "Get Ur Freak On" and "Idioteque."

But it's no fun to read someone else's list unless you can argue about it. Using this site's list as a simpler way to scroll through the rankings, here are some quibbles I came up with...

Songs not on the list that should be:

- Spoon, "I Turn My Camera On"

- Kanye West, "Can't Tell Me Nothing." Everybody likes "Flashing Lights" off Graduation but I like this one.

- The Hold Steady, "Your Little Hoodrat Friend"

- Bright Eyes, "Old Soul Song (For the New World Order)"

- Clipse feat. Pharrell, "Mr. Me Too"

- The Dixie Chicks, "Not Ready to Make Nice"

- The Hold Steady, "Chips Ahoy!" Beats "Stuck Between Stations" in my book.

- R. Kelly feat. T.I. and T-Pain, "I'm a Flirt (Remix)" Not better than "Ignition," I agree, but pretty great.

- Young Jeezy feat. Kanye West, "Put On" !

- Justin Timberlake, "SexyBack" !!

- Eminem, "Stan" !!!

Songs that are on the list but are undervalued:

- Rich Boy feat. Polow da Don, "Throw Some Ds" (351)

- Loretta Lynn feat. Jack White, "Portland, Oregon" (305) Top 100 at least, right?

- Three 7 Mafia, "Sippin' on Some Syrup" (222) A classic.

- Britney Spears, "Toxic" (141)

- Kelis, "Milkshake" (113) On my list "Toxic" beats "Milkshake" but both probably break into the top 50.

- UGK feat. Outkast, "Int'l Players Anthem (I Choose You)" (43) Top-ten material for me.

Songs that are on the list but are overvalued:

- Daft Punk, "One More Time" (5).

- Animal Collective, "My Girls" (9). I like Animal Collective but to me they are about a groove, not any single song.

- Antony and the Johnsons- "Hope There's Someone" (28).

- Dr. Dre feat. Eminem, "Forgot About Dre" (68). Great song, but it's ranked as the best Eminem song of the decade, which it is not.

- Kylie Minogue, "Love at First Sight" (208). Sure, "Can't Get You Out of My Head" is a great single of the decade. But this one is strictly an also-ran.

My overall score on the cool-o-meter: 246 out of 500. A lot of artists I sort of know about but never actually listened to. What's your score?

Streak of songs I recognized: 21 in a row -- from 69 to 49. The fact that I never bothered to listen to the Knife or Hercules and Love Affair messed me up in the top 20.

UPDATE [8/26 11:40pm] ... VERY IMPORTANT! I just realized the list contains the absolutely inexplicable and unforgivable omission of "Shooter" by Lil Wayne. INSANE. That is all.

No comments: