Top Ten Songs of the Decade
Radiohead? Arcade Fire? Interpol? The Strokes? The White Stripes? Animal Collective? Yeah, we've heard of 'em. For us, though, there was a much more intriguing, compelling batch of bands that weren't -- for the most part, anyway -- overhyped and overexposed this decade. (Plus: As much as we love that first Arcade Fire album, we'd gladly go back and time and assassinate the whole vest-wearing, cello-wielding lot of them if it meant never having to hear hundreds of shitty Arcade Fire knockoffs. So in the spirit of sheer contrarianism, here's another list of top ten songs of the '00s, mostly sans indie-rock -- since we've already scaled that mountain. We're already mad at ourselves for leaving Godpseed You! Black Emperor of this list, but what can you do?
This band had a leg up on everyone else for top song of the decade.
10. Jesu, "Weightless & Horizontal"
Clocking in at ten minutes, "Weightless" feels more like an eternity -- and that's just the first half of the song. As Justin Broadrick's narcoleptic melancholy and god-sized guitars spiral upward into some hitherto unimagined afterlife, his last four minutes of bludgeoning bliss render the listener appropriately comatose. And who didn't need a nice dose of oblivion this decade?
9. Nina Nastasia and Jim White, "In the Evening"
2007 saw Nina Nastasia -- who makes Cat Power look like Judy Collins -- collaborate with The Dirty Three's Jim White. Armed with just voice, acoustic guitar and White's confoundingly angular, avant-jazz timekeeping, Nastasia proceeded to make one stunning album -- and the best track, "In the Evening," fractures hearts in the most deep and secret ways.
8. Converge, "Phoenix in Flight"/"Phoenix in Flames"
Taken as a whole, the two uninterrupted tracks that open Converge's 2001 masterpiece Jane Doe exemplify everything that rules about the band: First is the long, evil, pulsing drone; second is the 42-second salvo of sonic and psychic shrapnel. Neither metal nor hardcore would ever sound the same.
7. Midlake, "Roscoe"
Sounding like Rumours-era Fleetwood Mac as filtered through the wreckage of indie-rock circa 2006, "Roscoe" unfolds like a poisonous flower--beguiling and subliminally sinister. Peek under the surface, though, and the song is even richer, shrouded in bucolic mystery and sheer, shadowy wonder. Even better: It breathes.