Guest Writer: Joseph Armillei's top 10 songs of the decade thus far

10: Gallows – Abandon Ship
Scenester hardcore? Call it what you will, I think you’ll find it hard to deny that Gallow’s created a lot of action in what had been a bit of a drab period for UK hardcore back in 2006. A band that often divide opinion across the scene, they went on to sign a £1 million deal with Warner after the release of “Orchestra of Wolves” (how “punk” of them, signing with a major for that amount of money). Anyway, I’ve seen them twice before live and both times were awesome, I wanna hate this band so bad but this is a real great tune.

9: The Streets – Has It Come To This?

Bit of a classic from 2001’s “Original Pirate Material”, lots of great tunes on the album but this one stands out a lot for me. The lyrics are great and give me a bit of a mind warp back to 2001 (“televisions, PlayStation’s, n64’s…”) and the piano loop throughout is just lush.

8: Jamie T – Back In The Game

Really good tune from 2007’s “Panic Prevention”. Nice and stripped back compared to the rest of the album and it has a real Billy Bragg feel to it. I’ll always remember some indie twats starting a pit to this at this years Leeds Fest, kinda ruined the song as it was a bittersweet moment to end my summer.

7: Klaxons – Gravity’s Rainbow

2007 was arguably the year of the Klaxons. Winning numerous awards and bagging major festival slots throughout the year, they grabbed the attention of the public after jokingly branding their music “new rave” just before they released debut album “Myths From The Near Future” (which is also a cracking book, by the way). Cue loads of twatty, middle class misfits wearing neon for a year then, eh? Nevertheless, they produced an outstanding album with some great tracks spanning different styles of music throughout. This one was a fave of mine throughout that summer, mainly the bass line and the uplifting vocals.

6: Boards of Canada – Beware the Friendly Stranger

2002’s “Geodaddi” presented numerous challenges for Scottish electronic duo Boards of Canada. First off, they’d been voted in numerous ” best albums of the 90’s” lists after the release of the critically acclaimed album “Music Has The Rights To Children”. Secondly, they then had to repeat the success from the last album 4 years later with a fresh sound. They came back with a album that ditched the hip-hop samples of old and came back with a dark album filled with eerie synths and subliminal messages throughout. This track is a short 30 second loop which quickly fell victim to the repeat function on my iPod. Very, very scary and addictive.

5: Random – Spontaneous Devotion

If you have got this far knowing all the songs then prepare to be let down. Bad Joke was (and still is) an EP released for free download on the “8bitpeoples” website. Full of crazy crazy arps and solos it is just an ultimate anthem for me leading up to a night out. Yes, and all on a Gameboy.

4: Enter Shikari – Mothership

Bit of an oldie from 2006 (or 2007 if you first found in on the 2007 release “Take To The Skies”), starts with a synth noise that can only be typed as dah dah daah duh duh duuh duh duh duh duuuh. Then it rolls in with a crashing guitar and the song begins proper. Full of mega fuckoff long solos and screamo vocals to brush your fringe to one side with, the bpm probably never dips below 200. A pretty raw breakdown even by their standards as well. Just a shame that the recent album got them more acclaim than the debut, even though they toned the music down a bit vocally and added some dubstep wobbles in to get the “OH LAWL CASPA” types engaged a bit more. Shit, how did I get through a review of Enter Shikari without saying “rawr”?

3: Bloc Party – This Modern Love

Bit of a indie kid classic. Could have picked at least 6 songs from the 2005 album “Silent Alarm” to be honest but this has always been my favourite. Great song about romance and dysfunctional relationships. I’ve seen the Bloc three times though and they haven’t played this song once. Stop playing Mercury because it’s shit, you silly Londoners.

2: Sabrepulse – Storm Raid Battle

Another chipmusic selection (i know, i know). Dubstep might be the thing at the time of writing but once upon a time back in 2006 Breakcore (in dummies terms, ridiculously fast drum and bass breaks) was a rising genre as well in tandem with Dubstep. It probably lacked some sustenance unlike Dubstep which continued to rise and evolve to what it is today under names like Skream, D1 and Caspa. Anyway, full of leg breaking breaks and frantic bleeps throughout, it’s just a immense song to dance to in your bedroom alone… or in a room in some grotty bar with Ash playing it live (hint hint)

1: Metronomy – This Could Be Beautiful (It Is)

Metronomy have steadily grown in profile over the last year after their concept album named “Nights Out”. They’ve played Leeds and Glasto this year, done a few of those ripoff NME shindigs and featured on quite a few blogs across the internetz too. This was before all that though, cue 2006 when Metronomy was just Joseph Mount. No band, no vocals, just plain laptop electronic music… or anything but for that matter. “Pip Paine (Pay the £5000 You Owe)” was the debut album from Metronomy and included everything from tracks made with beer can samples to RnB vocals over a simple bass guitar. This was a bit different to the rest of the album though. Whilst the rest of the album derived heavily from Joseph Mount’s affection with Warp Record’s “Autechre”, this track focused on ambient textures and was just quite beautiful to my ears upon first listen. Filled with very soft triangle wave synths and some punchy drum samples to build the track up, it then throws itself headspin into a shoegazey like lead synth. Listen at half two in the morning when you can’t sleep for maximum pleasure.

  • Joe

    props for Metronomy at number 1, can’t argue that anything from Pip Paine is nothing less than genius

  • twikki

    i’ve seen bloc party twice and both times they played this modern love

    pwn

  • Joseph

    @Joe: Cheers man, Pip Paine is a great album. Takes a while for a few of the tracks but some are bonafide classics in my book. They had to cut “You Could Easily Have Me” when I saw them this year though due to time constraints. Leaving all “Nights Out” material in their set that day 🙁

    @twikki: Damn you! I’m actually tempted to splash out some money to catch them on tour again just in the hope that I see it live. The last two times I’ve seen them they seemed very eager to play their recent material so that probably explains my bad luck…

  • Bloc party arnt touring any more apprently! Kele’s off solo (And giving love to spank rock) and the drummers seriously pissed with everyone, seems like your time has passed!

  • Joe

    @Armillei You talking about their slot at Leeds Fest? I remember them missing it out then as well, I would have punted a puppy I was so shocked/disgusted

  • http://www.nme.com/reviews/bloc-party/10966

    I’m sorry to break your musical heart man. In time, you’ll recover and things’ll be okay.

  • Joseph

    @Joe: Yeah, the slot at Leeds fest. Exactly the same sentiments :*(

    @Alec: I heard the drummer wanted to do different stuff and that according to him “Bloc Party need to refresh” and he’d “rather have a long term change than a short term break”. So who knows? At best I think we can expect a line-up change for the Bloc.

    Without going into too much detail i’d be pretty pissed if I were Matt. There’s been a much bigger emphasis on electronics in recent material (including the last album) which meant a lowered importance for him in places.

    It would be a miracle if they occupied their regular space at Leeds Fest 2010 at this rate…