It’s here! The final day of the challenge, and the only day with more than ten songs on it! I am so excited for today’s playlist because it is the end. Only eleven more songs to go…
1. Viva La Vida – Coldplay
I can prove my neediness in saying that when this song came out, I proclaimed it the centerpiece of my history homework playlist….and anytime I read a book about history (because I love history), this song gets put on. Not only are the vocals amazing, but the lush music and the way it seems to capture this aspect of history and legend just makes this stand out. It’s easily one of Coldplay’s finest songs.
2. Dog Days Are Over – Florence & The Machine
This is a song I play typically when I go for a run (“Run fast for your mother, run fast for your father, run for the children, for your sisters and brothers…”). I love the power behind this song. Florence Welch has vocals that are beyond enviable, and the range she expresses on “Dog Days…” is incredible. Add in the gorgeous music and unique personality brought out even further by every line and every note, and this is a classic.
3. The Fear – Lily Allen
Lily Allen has many great songs, but I must admit, The Fear is hands down, one of my favorite songs she has ever come out with. She is great at providing social commentary, but this song really pushes the limits that little bit further, with sarcasm oozing out of every line. It’s brilliant. In fact, It’s Not Me, It’s You may have been the best album she ever released.
4. Summertime Clothes – Animal Collection
Well, you can’t finish off the 1001 Songs Challenge without at least one more “Do I like this or do I not?” track. I’m pretty sure I like it. The introduction is a bit bizarre, but once the vocals kick in, there’s something intriguing about that does draw you in. It doesn’t seem to fit in with the songs on today’s playlist (so far), but I suppose it stands out in a good way.
5. Rain Dance – The Very Best ft. M.I.A.
I’ve never been a big M.I.A. fan; nothing personal against her, it’s just not my cup of tea. However, I do quite like this track for how unfamiliar its sound is to me. I like songs that strike me as different, and this definitely fits the bill. Of course, the vocal harmonies of The Very Best are really what kept me entertained throughout the track.
6. Empire State of Mind – Jay-Z and Alicia Keys
One of the only Jay-Z songs (that isn’t with Linkin Park) that I will ever say I love. The pounding piano melodies and electric vocals, the rapping that seems to fit perfectly, and the anthemic tone of the song are amazing. This is why this song has become the song in New York (next to “New York, New York” of course). Add on to the fact that without this song, we may never have had Katy Perry’s “California Gurls.”
“It’s so great that ‘Empire State of Mind’ is huge and that everybody has the New York song, but what the fuck? What about LA? What about California? And it’s been a minute since we’ve had a California song and especially from a girl’s perspective. We took the references of Prince, which is always a great reference, and we took a lot of the ’90s, … almost that house music, some of those references.” – Katy Perry to Rolling Stone, April 2010.
7. Tenalle Chegret – Tinariwen
Apparrently, this means “The Long Thread.” What I like about this is the obvious blues influence. It almost strikes me as odd that the American market wouldn’t pick up on this, if not at least for film soundtracks, especially as they could have remixed it to be an even cooler track. It has obvious appeal to it. Musically, the blues aspect is incredible, and the vocal harmonies are even more impressive. There’s definitely something to be said for Tinariwen’s sound; they’re strong and consistent in their style, not wavering in overall tone either.
8. Harry Patch (In Memory Of) – Radiohead
Radiohead have this profound ability to haunt and inspire. On “Harry Patch (In Memory Of),” there is a lush melody that sounds fit for something like Les Miserables. It is truly gorgeous. Thom Yorke’s soft, brinking on high-pitched vocals add extra dimension to the track overall, further presenting a melancholy, but heroic tale, penned to be from the perspective of a WWI soldier in the trenches (Patch). It’s probably one of the best tributes I’ve ever heard, being both deeply heartfelt and inspiring. This is more of what should have been put into the 1001 Songs… book; more songs that made people feel something.
9. Go Do – Jonsi
I remember hearing this a lot when it was on trailers for films and such, and I loved it. I am happy to say that I still do. It is a great track. Jonsi has an amazing vocal range, and when paired with such stunning instrumentation (worthy of a whimsical score), I feel like he cannot go wrong. There is something about this song that seems to mix a million emotions into one, covering a full spectrum and illuminating my headphones with pure power. In many ways, the thing that makes this track stand out best is the way it accomplishes so much without sounding like it’s been overthought. The arrangement of the whole thing sounds so natural and beautiful, it is hard to resist.
10. Me & The Devil – Gil Scott-Heron
Bluesy with an ominous tone that will both haunt and delight you. Gil Scott-Heron has a really gruff quality to his voice that makes it sound both fresh and classic, if that makes any sense. There is also a very well-written/delivered spoken-word poem at the end of the song, which just adds to the pure quality of the overall track.
And last but not least (well, maybe least, we’ll have to see what the song is…):
The 1001st song:
Stylo – The Gorillaz
This is supposedly about over-population, which I can kind of get from the lyrics. Bobby Womack and Mos Def appear on the track, which probably helped it in terms of popularity amongst people who weren’t already into The Gorillaz. It has a funk undertone to it that really gives it an edge that may not have previously existed. However, the same could probably be said for the vocals, which all meld wonderfully. I also like the classic hip-hop style that is easy to kind of pull from the track. Pretty good way to finish off the challenge, especially as this has been an OVERLOAD of songs.
And that’s all for the show folks! G-g-g-goodbye now!
Just kidding (kind of). This week, I am hoping to make a video about the 1001 Songs Challenge and what I liked, hated, and wish I’d seen more of. I will also be going back through every entry and piecing together a list of my favorites from the overall challenge.
If you’ve followed along with me, please #1001SongsPS and let me know what you thought about the whole damned thing. 😉