Music Playlist Week #25 (The Two-piece edition)
Top Tracks: The House That Heaven Built, Younger Us, The Nights of Wine and Roses
These Canadian noisemakers may have only produced two full albums before buggering off in to the ether, but theres a good argument to be had that these albums contain some of the best rock songs of modern times. Their wall-of-sound style music and anthemic lyrics are a real call to arms for celebrating music and seizing the day. If you're not familiar with these guys, we urge you to listen to "The House That Heaven Built". Incredible.
9) Pet Shop Boys
Top Tracks: Always on My Mind, West End Girls, Go West
The Pet Shop Boys are easily one of the most successful pairings in UK music history. They have an incredible selection of timeless classics, such as "West End Girls" and "It's a Sin". Defying the expectations of record executives and industry "experts", they have refused to be tied down to any specific musical genre or style. With 14 studio albums to date, they have become part of the very fabric of music history and are beloved all over the world.
Top Tracks: Ms. Jackson, Hey Ya!, B.O.B.
Atlanta born and bred hip-hop 2 piece OutKast consist of Andre 3000 and Big Boi, and in the late 90s/early 00s, you couldn't go anywhere without hearing one of their hits. They were serious tastemakers with a succession of critically-acclaimed work as well as pop mega hits. The fact that both of these guys can be in the conversation of the top rappers of all time, just shows how talented they are. Their infinitely catchy verses and often hilarious lyrics mean that they will go down in history as one of the greatest rap duos of all time.
7) Chemical Brothers
Top Tracks: Galvanise, Out Of Control, Saturate
Big-beat pioneers and all around dance scene gods The Chemical burst on to the scene by combining Public Enemy, My Bloody Valentine and Kratwerk to create a dance-rock-rap fusion that was pretty much unparalleled in music at the time. They're credited as being one of the few truly arena-sized dance acts around, and for good reason. They have inspired a whole generation of artists for the last 20 odd years, and continue to perform their epic tracks to enormous crowds. if you ever get a chance to see them perform live, don't miss out.
6) Simon & Garfunkel
Top Tracks: The Boxer, The Sound of Silence, Cecelia
With tracks like "The Sound of Silence", "Mrs. Robinson" and "Bridge over Troubled Water", there's not much more that needs to be said about Simon & Garfunkel. They were absolute powerhouses of the counterculture movement and social revolution of the 1970's along with the likes of The Beatles, The Beach Boys and Bob Dylan. They famously fell out badly, but they have left an incomprehensible legacy. Even through they're no longer a group, Paul Simon especially is still creating groundbreaking music.
5) The Black Keys
Top Tracks: Tighten Up, Howlin For You, Lonely Boy
Nowadays, Dan Auerbach and Patrick Cairney may perform live as much more than a two-piece and sound much more polished than they used to, when they first came on to the scene they were a ferocious blues-punk duo that took no prisoners. These guys have become some of the very best in the business at creating ridiculously catchy guitar hooks and joyous sing-a-longs that. It's hard to believe that the staple of the band is just two guys, which is an unreal display of camaraderie and brotherhood.
4) Royal Blood
Top Tracks: Little Monster, Hole in Your Heart, Out of the Black
Old school rock and roll with a modern twist, and very, VERY loud. Bassist/vocalist Mike Kerr and drummer Ben Thatcher formed in Brighton in 2013 and were fast-tracked to megastardom by signing with Warner Bros. and releasing their debut album later that same year. They arein that sweet spot between tough, scrappy underground sounding music and aesthetic, and the kind of tunes that appeal to radio stations around the world. A little like a more commercial sounding "Death From Above" if you like. Speaking of...
3) Death From Above
Top Tracks: Blood on Our Hands, Trainwreck 1979, Caught Up
Death From Above (1979) were the very definition of a "flash in the pan" when they burst on to the scene with the release of their 2004 debut album "You're a Woman, I'm a Machine". Then, just like that, they were gone and didn't reappear until 2011. Since then they have lost the "1979" from their name (again) and released 2 more absolutely outstanding albums to great critical acclaim. Whether they can keep it together this time and take their rightful place as one of the biggest and best rock bands in the world remains to be seen.
2) Daft Punk
Top Tracks: One More Time, Lose Yourself To Dance, Aerodynamic
These mysterious, helmeted Frenchmen Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter almost single-handedly made french electronica cool when they released their full-length album "Homework" in 1993. Whichever way you look at it, they're absolute dance music pioneers. Their second album "Discovery" has been named on just about every respectable websites list of greatest albums of all time, and rightly so. It's disco/pop fusion is just as powerful today as it was upon release.
1) The White Stripes
Top Tracks: Seven Nation Army, Hotel Yorba, Blue Orchid
Probably the most obvious inclusion on this list. Along with The Strokes, they shaped rock music in the early 2000s, and for many years after. Their basic, lo-fidelity approach to and blistering sonics took the music industry by storm, and not forgetting the fact that in "Seven Nation Army" they have created one of the best sing-along tracks of all time. The mystique around Jack and Meg's actual relationship seemed to really increase the interest in the. Jack is still incredibly prolific, and brilliant. Everything he touches turns to gold.
February 6, 2020