Too much tertiary education... Former performer/wrestler...Former teacher... Scientist... Published author... Father... Want to be a writer if I grow up...
Published February 2nd 2019
Scream along to 2005 in song
2005 was a special year for me. In February of that year, my son was born (and for the reason my daughter was born then, September of 2007 is also special). So, in honour of his birthday (and because I know this will embarrass him), here are the songs of 2005!
In 2005, I was in full-on teacher mode. As I mentioned when I wrote about the songs of 2009, I did not like a quiet class-rom, and so I was bombarded by pop music in all its myriad forms. A lot of it was, well… If it wasn't for some students liking classic rock, I think I might have gone insane. 2005, musically, was a year of "talent" show winners, novelty songs (Crazy Frog and Schnappi the Krokodile anyone?) and covers. So many covers! Some were excellent, but many were… not. Dance music seemed to dominate, but there was also a lot of decent pop and some good rock. It was quite the mixed bag of a year!
Having said that, while there is not a lot of music that was overly appealing to me in 2005, some of the tracks released in that year were really, really good.
But first, my favourite video of the year, by OK Go. It is actually quite a good song, but this one-shot video using treadmills to dance set them up for a string of amazing videos, from Rube Goldberg-esque constructions to amazing things with printers to stuff in the 'Vomit Comet'. And their songs are catchy as all hell. But this one, 'Here It Goes Again' is where it all started, and it is amazing.
So, now… the honourable mentions list! 'Advertising Space' by Robbie Williams; 'Alcohol' by Brad Paisley; 'Bad Day' by Daniel Powter; 'Best Of You' by Foo Fighters; 'Better Days' by Pete Murray; 'Dirty Harry' by Gorillaz; 'Don't Phunk With My Heart' by The Black Eyed Peas; 'Everyday I Love You Less And Less' by Kaiser Chiefs; 'Everyone Is Totally Insane' by Dandy Warhols (close to making the main list); 'Fine Line' by Paul McCartney; 'Have A Nice Day' by Bon Jovi (also quite close); 'I Like The Way' by Bodyrockers (yes, those kids in the class had in influence on me…); 'I Predict A Riot' by Kaiser Chiefs; 'I Write Sins Not Tragedies' by Panic! At The Disco; 'Joker And The Thief' by Wolfmother; 'Lonely No More' by Rob Thomas; 'Love Generation' by Bob Sinclair featuring Gary Pine; 'My Humps' by The Black Eyed Peas; 'Na Na Na Na naa' by Kaiser Chiefs; 'Shine' by Shannon Noll (don't judge); 'Watching You' by Rogue Traders; 'Wish You Well' by Bernard Fanning; 'Woman' by Wolfmother; 'You're Beautiful' by James Blunt (no, I mean it, stop judging me).
And without further ado, the top 11 songs of 2005.
'Hide And Seek' by Imogen Heap
A strange sounding song, but so beautiful. The layering of her voice and the lyrics paint an ethereal picture of something other-worldly. Yes, I know it is done with a lot of over-dubs and some computer trickery, but rarely has this sort of aural collage been done as well. This is a glorious song. One woman, her voice, a vocoder, a single synthesiser and nothing else. I'll say it again: Beautiful.
'Voodoo Child' by Rogue Traders
Borrowing a riff from Elvis Costello's 'Pump It Up', featuring former soapie actress Natalie Bassingthwaighte on lead vocals, and having a sound that doesn't quite harken back to the Australian pub rock it felt they were aiming for, this song should have been a disaster. The fact it was not and that it and the album it comes from (Here Come The Drums) are really, really good is a strong testimony to the hard work and effort they put in. They didn't even let the public know Natalie was lead singer until after this song dropped. It has a hook that drags you in and a chorus that (as I found out at the end of year school disco) people like to sing along to. What a great song.
'Pump It' by The Black Eyed Peas
Featuring the sounds of Dick Dale's 'Misirlou', this BEP single was everywhere in 2005. Yes, the music is timeless, but the delivery of the lyrics is stronger than most modern acts, and Fergie can really sing. Her voice helped elevate a lot of Black Eyed Peas' tracks (I have a few of their albums, yes…), but even will.i.am's delivery is unique and the sounds they create so seamlessly are a reason why this is just one of many great tracks they've released over the years.
'Photograph' by Nickelback
Yes, I'm allowed to like a Nickelback song (even though apparently there's an unwritten law that if you do admit that, you are banned from being accepted as 'normal'). I've mentioned this song before, but as one of the tracks of 2005, it was everywhere. Didn't matter – I really enjoy it. The way Chad Kroeger delivers the lyrics makes the song feel personal, as though it is his own past we are listening to. And it well could be; that sort of autobiographical song often feels more 'real' than something written by committee. I don't mind Nickelback – and I admit that – but this song is still, to me, their best track.
'Mind's Eye' by Wolfmother
lyrics video From their self-titled debut album, filled with great songs, this is my favourite. Its slow build, its lyrics, the music, Andrew Stockdale's voice – it all comes together in a prog-rock/psychedelic whole, showing that the sixties and seventies are still alive and beating in the hearts of some musicians, though without foregoing the twenty-first century. I find it hard to describe why I like this song, but I really do. And Wolfmother are still releasing great songs.
'This Is How a Heart Breaks' by Rob Thomas
The lead singer of Matchbox 20 released a solo album in 2005, which, truth be told, could have been a Matchbox 20 album. I liked it, sure, but didn't understand why he went solo. I've read heaps of stuff about it, but there seems to be conflicting stories and stuff like that, so I'll just leave it at that. However, that does not mean the songs Thomas released were inferior; I liked 'Lonely No More', but this track I prefer. There's just something about the chorus that sits well and it is immensely singable.
'Resurrection Shuffle' by Jimmy Barnes and The Living End
not a proper video
From the Double Happiness album, this is the first of the cover versions on this list, but not the last. Jimmy Barnes has the perfect voice for this song, and in The Living End, he had a bunch of musicians who could pump the tempo to make it singularly awesome. It is a great blend of voice and music and song that comes along rarely. This is one of those great cover songs missing from my column and that is bad on me. I would go so far as to say this is one of the best versions of this song. Yes, I think it's that good.
Catch My Disease - Ben Lee
Another song that was everywhere. Ben Lee had a habit in the 2000s of releasing immensely singable and catchy tunes that stuck in your head like an ear-worm. However, the fact they were good songs made it not as horrid as that might seem. Another song that was screamed at the end of year school disco. The percussive back-beat and simple chord structure also meant that for the next few years it was a staple of buskers. Even they could not destroy it.
As a side note, the bridge mentions a heap of pop culture references which some students in my class did not get. So, as a nice computer research assignment (banning Wikipedia, so they had to go elsewhere), I made them explain all of it. A few kids knew quite a deal, but at least one did not know any. Nice way to destroy a song's enjoyment, I know, but they didn't seem to mind. (No, it is not evil teaching!)
'My Boyfriend's Back' by The Spazzys
The second cover on the list, and a song that not enough people have heard of. The Spazzys were an Australian all-girl trio of garage rockers that took the 1963 hit by The Angels (not the Australian group!) and rocked it up with great guitars and a driving drum beat, but keeping the awesome harmonies. I have a CD single with this and a couple of live tracks, and that was about all I heard from them. I think they could do well nowadays, fitting in with the slew of incredible female singers/songwriters Australia is producing.
'I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor' by Arctic Monkeys
A heap of great music has emerged from the United Kingdom in the twenty-first century, and very few tracks were better in 2005 than this one by the Arctic Monkeys. It rocks, it sounds awesome, and the band just feels like they belong together. Another song I couldn't tell you why I like it, but every time it comes on Rage, the radio or even my mp3 player, I crank the volume and scream along to it.
'Evie Parts 1, 2 & 3' by The Wrights
And my favourite song of the year is a cover, it's by an Australian super-group and it was done as part of a charity. Originally done for the live Wave Aid concert, subsequently released as a single (I bought it the day it was released), it might not be as good as the all-time classic original by Stevie Wright (after whom the band was named) – but then again, very few Australian songs could touch that one – it is still a brilliant cover, it is still a brilliant song and everything about it is… well, brilliant. Proceeds from the track fed into a number of charities. And I can think of no better way to end this list.
But to finish, the song my son listened to as a 6/7 year old, watching it on one of my DVD's a lot: 'Parisienne Walkways' by Gary Moore. Yes, my son has awesome musical taste.
So, there you have it. 2005 in music. What did I get wrong? Comments, etc. (and requests for other years) are always welcome.
Oh, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY! to my son…