Friday, August 29, 2014

Top Songs Of The 90s (Division 1)

Welcome to out first division of the Top Songs Of The 90s where a panel narrows down the Top Songs until we get to the #1 song of the decade. Ballots were sent out to the station to station panel and I got 14 back (I think some voters are still on holiday). 6 Points were given to #1, 5 points to #2, etc. and 3.5 points were given to lists that were in NO ORDER. Below are the results!

PJ led the way. 10,000 Maniacs squeaked in. And Rage missed out by a point. You can follow along each Friday as another 9 songs catapult to the semi final stage. There will be 16 opening rounds, 12 semifinal rounds and then a tourney of head to head 64 songs in March-April. If you're interested in picking 6 songs a week, contact me! Thanks again!

A page with full results will be available in a couple weeks.
(# Points And Votes)
1. Better Man (Pearl Jam) 49 (12)
2. Closer (Nine Inch Nails) 24.5 (8)
3. Longview (Green Day) 24.5 (7)
4. Santa Monica (Everclear) 21.5 (7)
5. Linger (The Cranberries) 19 (5)
6. Smooth (Santana feat. Rob Thomas) 17.5 (5) 
7. Mid Life Crisis (Faith No More) 17.5 (4)
8. Roll With It (Oasis) 17 (5)
9. Because The Night (10,000 Maniacs) 13.5 (5)

Full Top 9 Playlist via YouTube:
Songs that missed the cut  (#Points and Votes)
Bulls On Parade (Rage Against The Machine) 12.5 (4)
In The Meantime (Helmet) 9 (3)
Big Time Sensuality (Bjork) 8.5 (2)
Sexx Laws (Beck) 7 (3)
Step On (Happy Mondays) 7 (2)
Juicy (The Notorious B.I.G.) 6 (1)
Walkin' On The Sun (Smash Mouth) 5.5 (2)
Scenario (A Tribe Called Quest) 5 (1)
Waitin' For A Superman (The Flaming Lips) 4.5 (2)
I Get Around (2Pac) 3.5 (1)
Brown Sugar (D'Angelo) 3.5 (1)
Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Outer Space (Spiritualized) 3.5 (1)

90s songs that got NO LOVE on Division 1 ballot:
Common People (Pulp)
Higher Than The Sun (Primal Scream)
I Am A Scientist (Guided By Voices)
On And On (Erykah Badu)
They Reminisce Over You (T.R.O.Y.) (Pete Rock & C.L. Smooth)
Window Licker (Aphex Twin)
Woo-Hah!!! Got You All In Check (Busta Ryhmes)
1952 Vincent Black Lightning (Richard Thompson)

Individual Lists:
Ballot 1:
1. Mid Life Crisis (Faith No More)
2. Scenario (A Tribe Called Quest)
3. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
4. Step On (Happy Mondays)
5. Sexx Laws (Beck)
6. Because The Night (10,000 Maniacs)

Ballot 2
1. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
2. Linger (The Cranberries)
3. Santa Monica (Everclear)
4. Roll With It (Oasis)
5. In The Meantime (Helmet)
6. Waitin' For A Superman (The Flaming Lips)

Ballot 3

1. Linger (The Cranberries)
2. Roll With It (Oasis)
3. Closer (Nine Inch Nails)
4. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
5. Because The Night (10,000 Maniacs)
6. Longview (Green Day)

Ballot 4
1. Juicy (The Notorious B.I.G.)
2. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
3. Mid Life Crisis (Faith No More)
4. Longview (Green Day)
5. Bulls On Parade (Rage Against The Machine)
6. Closer (Nine Inch Nails)

Ballot 5
1. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
2. Longview (Green Day)
3. Smooth (Santana feat. Rob Thomas)
4. Sexx Laws (Beck)
5. Roll With It (Oasis)
6. Closer (Nine Inch Nails)

Ballot 6
1. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
2. Because The Night (10,000 Maniacs)
3. Closer (Nine Inch Nails)
4. Santa Monica (Everclear)
5. Linger (The Cranberries)
6. Bulls On Parade (Rage Against The Machine)

Ballot 7
1.  Longview (Green Day)
2.  Better Man (Pearl Jam)
3.  Step On (Happy Mondays)
4.  Smooth (Santana feat. Rob Thomas)
5.  Santa Monica (Everclear)
6.  Closer (Nine Inch Nails)

Ballot 8
1. Bulls On Parade (Rage Against The Machine)
2. Better Man (Pearl Jam)
3. Closer (Nine Inch Nails)
4. Walkin' On The Sun (Smash Mouth)
5. Smooth (Santana feat. Rob Thomas)
6. In The Meantime (Helmet)

Ballot 9
1. Closer (Nine Inch Nails)
2. Big Time Sensuality (Bjork)
3. Linger (The Cranberries)
4. Because The Night (10,000 Maniacs)
5. Sexx Laws (Beck)
6. Better Man (Pearl Jam)

Ballot 10
Bulls On Parade (Rage Against The Machine)
Longview (Green Day)
I Get Around (2Pac)
Santa Monica (Everclear)
Better Man (Pearl Jam)
Roll With It (Oasis)

Ballot 11
NO ORDER (4-2.5 Points)
Because The Night (10,000 Maniacs)
Longview (Green Day)
Santa Monica (Everclear)
Walkin' On The Sun (Smash Mouth)

Ballot 12
Brown Sugar (D'Angelo)
Closer (Nine Inch Nails)
Longview (Green Day)
Roll With It (Oasis)
Santa Monica (Everclear)
Smooth (Santana feat. Rob Thomas)

Ballot 13
Better Man (Pearl Jam)
Big Time Sensuality (Bjork)
Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Outer Space (Spiritualized)
Mid Life Crisis (Faith No More)
Waitin' For A Superman (The Flaming Lips)
Weather With You (Crowded House)

Ballot 14
1. In The Meantime (Helmet)
2. Smooth (Santana feat. Rob Thomas)
3. Mid Life Crisis (Faith No More)
4. Santa Monica (Everclear)
5. Linger (The Cranberries)
6. Better Man (Pearl Jam)

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

#87: Smashing Pumpkins-Cherub Rock (Top 500 Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)

(Top Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)
Song: "Cherub Rock"
Artist: Smashing Pumpkins
Release Date: July, 1993
From The Album: Siamese Dream (1993)

Quick Take: It's appropriate that Smashing Pumpkins drummer Jimmy Chamberlin starts off this song with a circus drum roll, it being the lead track to the Siamese Dream album. Like all the rest on that record, "Cherub Rock" was actually recorded by himself and Billy Corgan alone, Corgan believing that the other members weren't yet up to his dreamed-of standards. Whatever the rationale, as a twosome Corgan and Chamberlin created a brilliant single -- while others from Siamese Dream would end up breaking the band into the big time, "Cherub Rock" smokes with searing passion and performance. In part this has to do with the lyrics, a wickedly hilarious slam against what Corgan considered small-minded indie rock culture (a sentiment pretty much returned in kind) couched in his preferred metaphor-via-obsessive self-focus. If it was just this it might not have amounted to as much, but with a dramatic, rushed intro, a blasting, flowing central riff with overdub on top of overdub (Butch Vig's production skills are clear throughout) and a Mick Ronson-in-overdrive solo on top of everything else, "Cherub Rock" does just that. It rocks, and rocks hard.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

#88: Social Distortion-Ring Of Fire (Top 500 Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)

(Top Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)
Song: "Ring Of Fire"
Artist: Social Distortion
Release Date: March, 1990
From The Album: Social Distortion (1990) 

Monday, August 25, 2014

#89: The Jesus and Mary Chain-Just Like Honey (Top 500 Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)

(Top Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)
Song: "Just Like Honey"
Artist: The Jesus & Mary Chain
Release Date: September, 1985
From The Album: Psychocandy (1985)

Quick Take: With its "Be My Baby" drum beat that sounds as if it is crying out from a torture chamber, this feedback and drone-soaked, Phil Spector wall-of-sound-gone-sour number opened the Jesus & Mary Chain's important 1985 debut album, Psychocandy. The early single and "buzz saw guitar" number was a defining track for brothers Jim and William Reid and the noise pop genre. Its refrain is a sweet as sugar "just like honey" with a high background vocal attached; the line preceding it is a bit more harsh: "Eating up the scum is the hardest thing for me to do." Sweet irony is the name of the Mary Chain's weird game; drink it in and it goes down just fine.

Friday, August 22, 2014

#90: Alice In Chains-Man In The Box (Top 500 Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)

(Top Modern Rock Songs Of All Time)
Song: "Man In The Box"
Artist: Alice In Chains
Release Date: March, 1991
From The Album: Facelift (1990)

Quick Take: An often overlooked but important building block in grunge's ascent to dominance, Alice in Chains' "Man in the Box" hit the MTV airwaves in heavy rotation in 1990, approximately one full year before Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit." The sepia-toned video depicted a hooded figure wandering around a barnyard while the band played nearby; at the end of the video, the figure drew back his hood to reveal a Christ-like face whose eyes were sewn shut with thick cords, making the chorus line, "Feed my eyes/Now you've sewn them shut," into a sudden and shocking visual reality. More metallic than many of their Seattle colleagues, and thus a better fit for MTV's programming at the time, Alice in Chains nonetheless resembled little else in hard rock's mainstream at the time. "Man in the Box" wasn't flashy, up-tempo, hedonistic, or really even aggressive; although its melody was memorable, it wasn't pop-metal and it had no roots in thrash. Instead, the song was a simple, lumbering beast, its sonic textures thick and muscular, its anger more sullen and introspective. As the title suggests, the atmosphere of "Man in the Box" is claustrophobic and bleak, never making the source of its discomfort explicit ("I'm the dog who gets beat/Shove my nose in shit") but rendering the overall impression with a sick intensity. Minimalistic at a time when few metal bands cared to explore such territory, "Man in the Box" is mostly built around a simple, chugging one-chord riff that runs through the opening hook and verses -- it's a two-note chord harmonized with the minor seventh instead of the standard fifth (the notes E and D instead of E and B). This produces a queasy dissonance, close to what the ear expects to hear, yet just far enough away for the listener to register that something isn't quite right. The song's slow, creeping melodies float over guitarist Jerry Cantrell's grinding and shuffling, sounding eerie and disturbing. This is especially true on the wordless opening melody, where Layne Staley's peculiar, tensed-throat vocals are matched in unison with an effects-laden guitar; the combination of the two timbres produces a wobbly, seasick quality that sets the stage for the song's bleakness. Staley explodes as the song crashes into the chorus, trading off portentous lines like: "Jesus Christ/Deny your maker" and "He who tries/Will be wasted" with Cantrell's drier, less-urgent voice. In fact, the contrast in those two lines perfectly sums up the song -- a meeting of metal theatrics and introspective hopelessness.
Courtesy: Steve Huey (