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Jul 11

Which Decade Is Tops For Pops 2011: the Number 8s

Which Decade Is Tops For Pops67 comments • 1,799 views

1961: Theme From Dixie – Duane Eddy (video)
1971: (Where Do I Begin) Love Story – Andy Williams (video) (lyrics)
1981: Night Games – Graham Bonnet (video) (lyrics)
1991: The Whole Of The Moon – The Waterboys (video) (lyrics)
2001: It Wasn’t Me – Shaggy ft Rikrok (video) (lyrics)
2011: Guilt – Nero (video) (lyrics)

Spotify playlist (all 6 tracks)

It’s a tenuous segue, but what the heck: just as the last round closed with a martial rhythm (of sorts, at least), so this round opens with one. And there the similarities end, as we switch from the fully contemporary to a song that dates from the middle of the 19th century. Not being au fait with the American minstrel tradition, my only prior exposure to “Dixie” was as a part of Elvis Presley’s funereally paced “American Trilogy”, so the chirpiness of Duane Eddy‘s version was initially startling – but despite its lyrical pining, this was traditionally a cheerfully rendered tune, and so Eddy takes fewer liberties with it than I had thought.

The track’s first half sticks fairly faithfully to Eddy’s “man with the twang” template, reminding me of the influence that he exerted on Hank Marvin’s playing style, and the combined influence of both players on the rock guitar heroes that would follow in their wake. (This stuff might sound corny now, but if you were a suburban bedroom musician with no access to the cooler stuff – your Hookers, your Wrays – then Hank and Duane on the Light Programme might well have been your beacons.) But during the second half, things start to go a bit loopy, as if the whole studio has suddenly slid into devil-may-care drunkenness: hollered yee-haas, a yakety sax, a half-mumbled lyrical fragment, a demented, almost parodic diva. It all leaves me wondering how much of this madness can be laid at the door of Eddy’s long-time collaborator, the late Lee Hazlewood. (Ah, NOW you’re interested!)

As he’s one of the few artists ever to have graced my dad’s in-car 8-track cartridge player during the early 1970s (along with The Carpenters, Simon & Garfunkel and, er, Mario Lanza), I have always had a soft spot for Andy Williams. A couple of years ago, just before he shuffled off to Branson, Missouri in perpetuity (the traditional retirement community for showbiz troupers; Ray Stevens packs ’em in there), I saw the man perform the last ever date of his last ever international tour. Then aged 79, his first vocal cracks were starting to show – but all came good for a staggering rendition of MacArthur Park, which showed surprising boldness for an artist whose habitual role has been to offer reassurance and comfort.

There’s not a whole heap of comfort to be found in “Where Do I Begin”, though – at least not if you knew its back story, as did most listeners in 1971. Originally the instrumental theme tune of Love Story, which had been THE big weepie of the previous year (spoiler: Ali McGraw dies!), lyrics were added posthumously to the track, turning it into a pledge of romantic loyalty that both the singer and the audience already knew was doomed to meet a tragic end. Hey presto, instant poignancy.

Despite its pretty tune, this was never one of my favourite Williams tracks – and I speak as someone who listened to his Greatest Hits 8-track at least twice a week for at least two years on the weekday morning school run, so it had plenty of time to ingratiate itself. I prefer Williams when he unstiffens and starts to swing – and speaking as someone who has watched the McGraw death scene in a room of bawling sisters, mindful of the need to respect their ersatz grief, I never rated Love Story much, either.

Fresh from a two-year stint in Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow, Graham Bonnet briefly reactivated his solo career before joining the Michael Schenker Group in 1982. Three years earlier, he had topped the Australian charts with “Warm Ride“, a Bee Gees song that had been omitted from the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. But having swapped watered-down disco for watered-down metal (not there’s anything wrong with either; you can’t argue with “Since You Been Gone“), Bonnet wasn’t about to switch back. Cue the suburbanite slaverings of “Night Games”, in which our “man in the busy street” joins our “lady in the library” in the mysterious “house of sin”, where readies are exchanged for “games OF THE NIGHT”.

(Ah, that none-more-Eighties suffix: see also Kiss/Laura Branigan (creatures OF THE NIGHT), DeBarge (rhythm OF THE NIGHT), Sam Fox (spirit OF THE NIGHT) and many more.)

Trouble is: once you start hearing “house of sin” as “house of Cyn“, the erotic edifice does begin to crumble (do they pay for their pleasures with LUNCHEON VOUCHERS?), only to topple further once you suspect that the lead menu item is, um, SEXY SNOOKER. (“Always play one last frame; it says in the rules!”)

Those of you with memories that stretch back two whole months (for yes, I have been on an extended “Blocked By Bonnet” hiatus, and let us speak of it no more) will recall my banning of Tracy Chapman’s “Fast Car” from the 2011 chart, on the grounds that reissues skew the samples. In which case, you might have some justification in quibbling the inclusion of a reissued 1985 single from The Waterboys in the chart of 1991. To which I say: ah, BUT: six years is less than a full decade, and “The Whole Of The Moon” felt connected to pop in 1991, in a way that “Fast Car” doesn’t in 2011.

(I was THERE, man. I did the PARTY TAPES. All of which HAD to include something by The Waterboys and something by The Clash, in order to placate the miserable ex-punks who poo-poohed house.)

As with more of these old hits than I care to mention, I had never given “The Whole Of The Moon” my full attention before now – and despite my habitual genre-adversity towards Big And Important Celtic Chest Thumpers, I am minded to grant it a reprieve, on the grounds that the Bigness And Importance of the track is a justifiable fit for the theme of the song. For if Mike Scott is going to make a series of comparisons between his own aspirations/achievements and the grander, more ambitious, more over-arching visions of his unnamed damaged-genius-hero figure (some say it’s C.S. Lewis, but Syd Barrett would fit just as well and Scott says it’s a composite anyway), then it’s as well that he does so over a questing quasi-martial march which becomes more vaingloriously florid as the track progresses.

Hey ho, we’re back to fucking. Although credited to Shaggy featuring Rikrok, it’s the guest turn who does all the work here, his host confining himself to a couple of toasted verses and endless re-iterations of the track title.

It’s lazy but it works, casting Rikrok as the cheater who got caught on the job, now desperately seeking dubious scraps of relationship advice from the magisterially absent MISTAH LOVAH LOVAH himself. Thus the track title becomes a prompt, muttered in Rikrok’s ear as he fretfully reviews the case for the prosecution, while the rest of Shaggy’s counsel essentially boils down to “chill out/man up/stand your ground/lie through your teeth”.

Rikrok does man up before the song is through, but not as directed. Resolving to apologise to his wronged woman, he spurns his mentor and provider (never devalue the worth of a “ft.”) with new-found clarity. (“You may think that you’re a player, but you’re completely lost.”) And so, and despite appearances to the contrary, “It Wasn’t Me” turns out to be more than cheery braggadocio about “banging on the bathroom floor” (although to be fair, there’s quite a bit of bragging to be had), revealing itself to be quite the morality tale after all.

In stark and immediate contrast with the jokey breeziness of Shaggy and Rikrok’s take on infidelity, Nero offer – through the cavernous medium of Stadium Dubstep, with lingering echoes of Stadium Trance – a darker, more accusing riposte, this time from a woman’s perspective. (“Sometimes I feel you should be crawling back to me” / “The guilt you hide will come between us after all”)

This might have worked better if a) the eight lines of the song weren’t endlessly repeated, in the time-honoured and perfunctory Dance Anthem tradition and b) the video wasn’t all about pole dancers.

OK, you’ve waited long enough! The voting box is open, and the usual rules apply. My apologies for the delay (I’m blaming my block on Bonnet) and my particular thanks to Erithian, for his friendly and supportive nudges.

Comments

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  1. 1
    Mike Atkinson on 6 Jul 2011 #

    My votes:

    6 points – The Waterboys
    5 points – Duane Eddy
    4 points – Shaggy ft Rikrok
    3 points – Nero
    2 points – Andy Williams
    1 point – Graham Bonnet

    THE SCORES SO FAR:
    1991: The Whole Of The Moon – The Waterboys – 135 points
    2011: Guilt – Nero – 118 points
    2001: It Wasn’t Me – Shaggy ft Rikrok – 103 points
    1971: (Where Do I Begin) Love Story – Andy Williams – 95 points
    1961: Theme From Dixie – Duane Eddy – 80 points
    1981: Night Games – Graham Bonnet – 57 points

  2. 2
    weej on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Not sure what Bonnet is, but I’m very happy to see this feature back on track anyway. I was just wondering this morning if I’d see it again.
    Anyway, onto the scores.

    6 points – Nero – There seems to be a bit of a battle going on right now for dubstep. On one side the music critics and music connoisseurs who want to refine it into a tasteful genre, on the other side the clubbers and DJs who are transferring the wobble and the half-step beats to the charts. Count me firmly on the side of the latter. This isn’t anywhere near as good as last year’s ‘Innocence‘ but seeing Nero in the charts seems like a minor victory anyway.
    5 points – Shaggy – Surprised to find how much I enjoyed listening to this again. Shaggy’s quite a one for popping up again when you’ve forgotten about him, wouldn’t be surprised if he has another big hit in the next few years.
    4 points – The Waterboys – I’m really not into “The Big Music” or whatever it was called, but this is absolutely one of the most acceptable examples of it. The first version I found on Soulseek was an excellent acoustic version, which I really enjoyed before realising it wasn’t the single. A shame as it lacked the bombast and seriousness that spoils this version a bit.
    3 poins – Duane Eddy – This hasn’t aged quite as well as J. Dankworth, but it’s a pleasant enough period piece anyway. The singing in my right ear during the fade-out is pretty strange.
    2 points – Andy Williams – Agreed on AW being better when he’s swinging than when he’s balladeering. I just don’t have it in myself to take this song seriously, oddly as it’s just a couple of degrees away from some Scott Walker songs. Sorry, Andy.
    1 point – Graham Bonnet – Rarely have I heard anything try to sound so anthemic and end up so deeply dull. Also seems to go on forever, never a good sign.

  3. 3
    swanstep on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 – Waterboys (like Mike, I’ve never completely got behind this one – I find it hard to listen to it all the way to the end for one thing; at about 4 mins I’m dying for a new chord! But there’s some basic sound it’s got that’s distinctive and is enough to make it some kind of classic/standard)
    5 – Nero (New to me, pretty overwhelming in conjunction with the OTT vid.. Not sure I like it, but it’s got some nasty power.)
    4 – Duane Eddy (sounding pretty fresh after all the use of drum corps by Beyonce, et al.)
    3 – Shaggy (It’s alright I suppose. Not my sort of thing.)
    2 – Andy Williams (It’s not like the melody is *so* great but still the vocals are redundant and unctuous. I hate his smarmy Moon River too.)
    1 – Bonnet (Seriously unpleasant – Bonnet’s got a great belting voice on some tracks – Baby Blue was hugely influential down under – but this song is terrible.)

  4. 4
    weej on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Ah, sorry, Bonnet = Bonnet. Early morning brainfreeze.

  5. 5
    lonepilgrim on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Great to see the return of this feature:

    6 points – Shaggy ft Rikrok
    I’d forgotten all about this – but it’s a joy to listen to and both performers harness their talents to the song
    5 points – Andy Williams
    I’ve always liked his voice for its light, almost androgynous tone combined with a passion which is not all huffing and puffing. This song is a great showcase for those qualities.
    4 points – Nero
    This sounds like Candi Staton’s ‘You got the love’ sung by an android which right now seems like a good thing
    3 points – The Waterboys
    I like the passionate vocal and the sentiment but the rhythm section always seems a bit leaden and earthbound – they developed a lighter quality with ‘Fisherman’s Blues’ which I preferred
    2 points – Duane Eddy
    It’s pleasant enough but doesn’t excite me as much as the others
    1 point – Graham Bonnet
    night-club metal combining the worst of both

  6. 6
    AndyPandy on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 – Nero – electronic/dance music never stops pushing the boundaries – there’s always another genre to save us
    5 – Andy Williams – I largely echo what Pilgrim says above. One of my favourite song stylists – usually classy productions too.Like everything from the swingingest (“House of Bamboo”) to the lushest (“where Do I Begin/Home Loving Man”)
    4 – Nice good time music although I wouldn’t buy it
    3 – Duane Eddy – this is ok of its kind
    2 – Graham Bonnet – yes ‘nightclub metal’ is a good term for this – and the nightclub would be a particularly tacky one visited by “celebs” too
    1 – awful student disco rubbish

  7. 7
    AndyPandy on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Trying to do that while doing something at work 4 points was for Shaggy and 1 point for the Waterboys.

  8. 8
    David Belbin on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 points – Shaggy ft Rikrok I’ve always quite liked this
    5 points – The Waterboys I don’t buy this, in any sense, but it’s better than the rest. Still annoyed about ‘Fast Car’ by the way
    4 points – Andy Williams Didn’t he finish with this when we saw him? OK
    3 points – Nero Terrible lyrics, useless song
    2 points – Duane Eddy – legend – played a tiny gig in Sheffield a couple of weeks ago, but I hope he didn’t play this rubbish
    1 point – Graham Bonnet I couldn’t get through this, horrible

    Welcome back. The Spotify playlist is just short enough for the ads not to appear until the end. Result!

  9. 9
    Billy Smart on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Koo! A whole four choons that I really like here and only one stinker;

    6 – Waterboys – I really *have* heard the big music in this instance
    5 – Andy Williams – such strength and smoothness to convey such vulnerability…
    4 – Duane Eddy – chewy Yip! Yip!
    3 – Nero – Its very hard to go that wrong with stadium trance
    2 – Shaggy – He sounds too smug to inspire much in the way of Billy-empathy
    1 – Bonnett – This is supposed to be erotic? Hoary old rocker rubbish that doesn’t even rock

  10. 10
    Scott M on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 – Shaggy
    5 – Nero
    4 – The Waterboys
    3 – Duane Eddy
    2 – Andy Williams
    1 – Graham Bonnet – What on earth?

  11. 11
    Z on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 points – Shaggy featuring Rikrok – My complete ignorance means that I’d not heard this before. I liked it.
    5 points – Nero – Enjoyed this too. After a depressing middle two tracks, this selection came alive at the end.
    4 points – Andy Williams. I must be one of the few women of my age who didn’t see Love Story. I read the book and tears were indeed jerked, but I felt my emotions being thoroughly manipulated even as I read. As for the song, its high position reflects my lack of enjoyment of the rest.
    3 points – Duane Eddy. Okay, but I’ve heard enough now.
    2 points – The Waterboys. A bit thumpy. And it went on and on.
    1 point – Graham Bonnet. The one redeeming feature of this was that it only lasted 3 1/2 minutes compared to the Waterboys’ 5.

  12. 12
    JonnyB on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Welcome back!

    6 – Waterboys. With the qualification that it’s a track that always slightly disappoints me – you expect it to physically pin you against the wall, but the sound always comes across as oddly weedy. It might be because my CD’s from the era of ‘look – we’ve rush-dumped the music on here, it’ll last you for ever, just give us yer money’, or it might be just that it’s a song that predated over-mastering but seems to warrant it.

    5 – Nero. Difficult to judge sitting at my dining table, but I suspect that if I were in my twenties and off my face having been persuaded to go on to a club by the three girls I’d just met at the bus stop then this would be the best song ever.

    4 – Duane. Probably ditto, if I’d been 23 in 1961. I quite like the shrieking woman.

    3 – Shaggy. This is absolutely, resolutely ‘all right’.

    2 – Andy. Concur with the other posters regarding the ballad/swing thing. It’s big and lush, but feels cynical.

    1 – Bonnet. I do occasionally have a soft spot for the sort of music listened to by denim-clad fifteen year-olds called ‘Neil’. But this is an utterly forgettable by-numbers example, and ‘nightclub metal’ as a phrase pretty well nails it for me, also. You picked up on the ‘house of sin’ line – I caught that as well, and it occurred to me that it’s a phrase only ever used in bad song lyrics (like the tabloid ‘performed a lewd act’ – people don’t actually SAY that). Anyway, then the ‘night games… games of the night…’ – there’s nothing quite so risible as something that professes to be dangerous and on the edge, but this is SO NOT – it wants to be gritty L.A. but it’s provincial and suburban. Nothing against Mr. Bonnet, but this is the Pinner ‘Sex Farm.’

  13. 13
    DietMondrian on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Crikey, this is difficult. I’m not that keen on any of them.

    6 – Nero. Jonny B above sums it up for me. (This might be the first time I’ve ever marked high for something with obvious autotune on it.)
    5 – Waterboys.
    4 – Eddy – strange.
    3 – Bonnet – very dull, but not actively unpleasant, unlike:
    2 – Shaggy, and;
    1 – Williams – this makes me want to invent punk all over again.

  14. 14
    wichitalineman on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 Shaggy – an obvious no.1 as soon as you heard it. Felt like a summer hit, so it must have been a good spring. It reminds me of the “I didn’t do it” Simpsons episode, not sure which came first.

    5 Nero – first time I’ve heard this. Ooooooh, loud!!

    4 Waterboys – I spent an evening with a professional Irishman last night – it wasn’t as entertaining as this. The one song of theirs I have any time for, but gosh it really works; “You saw Brigadoon”.

    3 Duane Eddy – not his best, is it? And nowhere near as good as Elvis’s American Trilogy adaptation which juxtaposes it so beautifully with All My Sorrows.

    2 Andy Williams – Too slick to work for me. His voice can go either way but I deffo prefer it when relaxed and resigned (Can’t Get Used To Losing You) or upbeat and open (Happy Heart, Home Lovin’ Man).

    1 Graham Bonnet – look at that cover! Look at his neck! Squawk!

  15. 15
    Mike Atkinson on 6 Jul 2011 #

    From an aging raver’s perspective, the half-step tempo of “Guilt” is perplexing – people really DANCE to stuff that’s this SLOW? – but if my limited observations at Magnetic Man and Crystal Castles gigs are anything to go by, then this is indeed The Beat That’s Driving Today’s Kids Crazy. It’s a peculiar development – but because I don’t quite understand it, I’m drawn to it all the more.

  16. 16
    swanstep on 6 Jul 2011 #

    re: the “none more ’80s” formula…
    Shadows of the night, Pat Benatar (a huge guilty pleasure that one!)
    But probably ’80s Winwood is the king of ‘night’: Night train, Talking back to the night, Don’t you know what the night can do?, The night belongs to michelob…

  17. 17
    Lena on 6 Jul 2011 #

    So glad you’re back Mike!

    6 – Shaggy – Charming denial, nobody at News of the World is going to be able to say this with half as much winning insouciance.

    5 – The Waterboys – Very much of its time, sure, but Scott has enough of a hold on what matters, ie you can hear compassion in his voice, as well as awe. This *is* “The Big Music.”

    4 – Nero – Who is the woman, if it isn’t Katy B?

    3 – Duane Eddy – Not my favorite American song but then hey, I’m not from the South. He does a good enough job with it, though.

    2 – Andy Williams – Hearing this reminds me of a time in Toronto when I was with my friends and we went to a restaurant that had a tiny string section playing live music – this was an Italian place on the Danforth. A friend said “Play The Godfather theme!” and so they did, which made me un peu tense. I can’t separate this, ever, from the movie, wherein we see poor Michael sucked in, corrupted, really. Williams does a fine job here but I remain ambivalent.

    1 – Graham Bonnet – I think this was passe even when it came out, right?

  18. 18
    thefatgit on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Great to see Which Decade… back, Mike!

    The scores:
    6 – Nero
    5 – The Waterboys
    4 – Shaggy
    3 – Duane Eddy
    2 – Andy Williams
    1 – Graham Bonnet

    Let’s start with Bonnet (as I like to finish on a high with these little blurbs). I’m reminded of Rita, Sue and Bob Too. Bob’s rocking out to this dreck, while Rita and Sue are sofa dancing to Madness.
    Andy Williams’ voice is a thing of wonder, but as he races up that emotional staircase, for some reason I’m not tempted to follow him there.
    Duane Eddy’s “Dixie” is a pleasant surprise, though. Quite a toetapper despite its “strangeness”.
    Shaggy and RikRok has a charm about it, although the whole “don’t hate the player…” aspect of R&B leaves me a bit cold.
    The Waterboys, or should that be THE WATERBOYS!!! This was well received in Ibiza wasn’t it? It’s a marvellous single, especially the horns.
    Top marks to Nero, and since I heard his remix of MJ Cole’s “Sincere”, this man can do no wrong in my eyes.

  19. 19
    Ed on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Another great week, with four crackers and only one real dud (guess which….)

    6 – The Waterboys. I have no critical distance at all on this: I was in the right place at the right age at the right time. My then-girlfriend now-wife is a Waterboys fanatic. And they were responsible for one of the three best performances I have ever seen, at the Hammersmith Palais in 1986. The song is not their best, but it does achieve some of the grandeur that Scott was going for. I always thought it was about Prince. My 12″ has “For Prince U saw the Whole of the Moon” etched on the run-out.

    5 – Andy Williams. Again, a sentimental pick: like Mike, I heard a lot of Williams as a child, and this is just lovely. Rather Scott Walker-ish, I thought. and now I know the story of Love Story, the subtlety of the way the lyric uses intertextuality (is that the word I am looking for?) is very winning.

    4 – Nero. I have only a nodding acquaintance with dubstep, but it sounds like it may be one of those genres that is greatly improved by being dumbed down for the mainstream.

    3 – Duane Eddy. Down to fourth place already, and this is still a great record. There is something very thrilling about Eddy’s insistence on the electric quality of his guitar, and the freak-out section is a riot. All in the context of a song which was in its origins a racist anthem. Has Greil Marcus written an essay about this record yet?

    2 – Shaggy. Great toasting and a sharp lyric, let down by the slightly silly chorus. Like wichita, I always hear Bart Simpson, and I am afraid that ruins it for me.

    1 – Graham Bonnet. As Mike says, Bonnet’s Rainbow (Richie who?) can be a whole lot of pop-metal fun. But this is just feeble, not helped by its net curtain-twitching Daily Express lyric.

  20. 20
    Ed on 6 Jul 2011 #

    So I have just read the Wikipedia entry on ‘Dixie’, which is pretty alarming, really. Does anyone better informed than me want to explain why performing or even enjoying this song is not a deeply dodgy thing to do?

  21. 21
    Mark M on 6 Jul 2011 #

    6 points: Shaggy ft Rikrok – I’m generally in favour of a bit of storytelling in pop, and have never had a problem with Shaggy’s self-parodic Casanova schtick. Rikrok doesn’t a decent job.

    5: Andy Williams – the movie is a very bad thing, but this is surprisingly enjoyable. I think Andy also did a version of The Godfather theme with added words…

    4: The Waterboys – I possibly rather liked this for a couple of weeks in 1985. I was definitely very anti it and Mike Scott by 1991. Listening now, he sounds more shrill than I remember. It just tries too hard.

    3: Nero: Far too prog-rock for my tastes but better than…

    2: Duane Eddy: This is pretty horrible, and disappointing considering the people involved.

    1: Graham Bonnet: His USP was that he sang hard rock in a jacket more suited for a yacht in Cannes, I believe. I like SInce You’ve Been Gone. But this is awful.

  22. 22
    Chelovek na lune on 6 Jul 2011 #

    Hmm, welcome back, Mike. Not a stunning selection, I think, overall, and I’m rather surprised at the one I’ve placed top, but there you go.

    6. Nero. Not heard this before, and frankly the video should be scrapped and redone completely anew in a different setting. But, despite its limitations, still, wow.

    5. Andy Williams. A proper song. Emotive. Properly sung. And doesn’t overstay its welcome.

    4. Waterboys. A proper song. Occasionally emotive. Well performed. It does definitely overstay its welcome, though. Far far far from the band’s best. And thinking of the “Fast Car”, and comparing it with the no 11 the week “The Whole of the Moon” was no 8 (Blur’s “There’s No Other Way”)…it’s a close call which I prefer. (We’ll have to see what happens when we reach another re-release in the 1991 chart in due course…although that one was a re-recording of a past, 2-year old flop, so I dare say that Blur won’t slip in there, either)

    3. Graham Bonnet. Unremarkable music to turn up loud down the Cortina along the A13 after dark. Or even the A12 (Does it show that I am counting the days until I leave Essex, for the second time, and this time, probably for good?) . But much less horrible than I feared it would be. I really don’t mind groups like Rainbow or Magnum in certain moods, and this kind of falls in the same area. Not high art, or a classic, sure.

    2. Duane Eddy. A bit disappointing really.

    1. Shaggy. Profoundly dislikeable, irritating, and somehow feels incomplete, in terms of things like melody. Another none best not to watch the video to.

  23. 23
    tonya on 7 Jul 2011 #

    20, are you expecting schools that won’t teach evolution to teach the history of the minstrel show? The glamorization of the Old South has certainly diminished since I was a child (we sang Dixie in school) but there are still plenty of white Southerners who cling to it.

  24. 24
    JonnyB on 7 Jul 2011 #

    #19 ‘net curtain-twitching Daily Express lyric’… bang! Nailed it!

    I remember being thrilled by the early Rainbow Live album (I think it was called that). Essentially because they were still a Deep Purple tribute act. I also remember liking the pop-Bonnet version – but I now associate them with disastrously fancying the wrong girl, and can’t get past that I’m afraid.

  25. 25
    Chewshabadoo on 7 Jul 2011 #

    Mike, I guess with Dubstep it’s key to think of it as in inverse drum and bass. With the later I’m sure you know that you dance half-speed to it, usually to the bass. With Dubstep the bass is usually quicker than the drum tempo, so you end up dancing ‘double-speed’.

    The key of course with both genres is a system providing you with bass you can feel.

  26. 26
    lockedintheattic on 7 Jul 2011 #

    6. Nero
    5. Waterboys
    4. Andy Williams
    3. Graham Bonnet
    2. Duane Eddy
    1. Shaggy

  27. 27
    Pete on 7 Jul 2011 #

    6: Shaggy – not only did this sound like a number one to me, when it was described to me three months before it sounded like a number one! It still produces a big broad grin whenever I hear it.

    5: Nero: New to this, but it sounds really rather big and I want to hear it again RIGHT AWAY. Lovely fuzzy break, and actually feels rather heartfelt for a Euro bosher. In and out too like James Bond swopping that Faberge egg in Octopussy.

    4: Waterboys: I tried to like the Waterboys a lot, I thought they could be my BIG SOUND band, but Mike Scott was too ridiculous for me to ever like. But this is their big hit, and out of time it is it still sounds good. BUT HOW DID YOU SEE DIFFERENT MOONS? Clearly an arse reference.

    3: Duane Eddy – Well its not the best showcase for his twang, but before it turns into Lord Rockingham XI its rather nice. And then it turns into Lord Rockingham, and disappoints by not going more nuts.

    2: Andy Williams – Along with Matt Munro’s And Then She Smiled (Eye Level theme) this is the kind of juxtaposition of words with a tune which really doesn’t need them. I used to do stuff like this to Axel F (Axel F has a problem, Beverly Hills won’t solve ’em…)

    1: Graham Bonnet: Oh I remember this. As a wee nipper I had a very soft spot for stuff like this, but it squanders what soft rock promise it has on a thoroughly appalling chorus! That Graham can’t even sing. Robert Palmer would have binned this (or done it MUCH better).

  28. 28
    grange85 on 7 Jul 2011 #

    6 points – Duane Eddy – Love (near) instrumentals and this goes beautifully mad at the end.
    5 points – Nero – Not bothered by the repetitiveness and had rated it before I was aware of the pole-dancing video (which I chose not to watch).
    4 points – The Waterboys – I can’t help but hear Noel Furlong leading The St Lukes Youth Group in singing this.
    3 points – Andy Williams – It sounds so big and reminds me of my mum who loved the film.
    2 points – Shaggy ft Rikrok – Nope… don’t get and don’t care that I don’t get it.
    1 point – Graham Bonnet – OK that’s just awful… but not quite hilariously so.

  29. 29
    Mike Atkinson on 7 Jul 2011 #

    I’ve appended the “scores so far” on this round to comment #1 (as well as updating the scores for previous rounds). Basically, Bonnet’s screwed. Serves him right for triggering my hiatus.

    In the next round, you’ll get your first glimpse of how the decades are starting to shape up against each other.

  30. 30
    AndyPandy on 7 Jul 2011 #

    Re 25: that’s interesting as the first time I was ever in a jungle rave and saw them dancing to it (this was late 1994 at a jungle night at the Rhythm Station in Aldershot and my first proper rave since 1990 (if I excluding a few nights at the Club X allnighter in Wycombe)it was still very fast and to the beat – far trickier (with the fast shuffle thing all the junglists were doing) than dancing to hardcore and way way faster than in “my day” back in 1988-90). I know it looked and felt knackering and I soon headed off to the other arena!

    Probably slowed down because it was so much hassle and was only slightly less tiring than that bouncing up and down all the 15-18 year olds were always doing whenever I walked through a Happy Hardcore room!

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