Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Top of the top of the pops

Way back in 2005, as we edged closer to the 1,000th No. 1 single since the UK charts began, I joined other music nerds in ranking my top 100. Fast forward to 2020, and the Guardian is publishing its own list, with the contributions canvassed from its sizeable pool of music writers.

Yesterday, they reached #9 in the countdown: ABBA's 'Dancing Queen', which topped the pile for me - a judgement I very much still stand by. Jude Rogers' accompanying piece outlines the song's genius, as well as its reception and cultural impact. The comments from contemporary Creem and Sounds critics unable to deny its brilliance reminded me of Pitchfork's retrospective review of the album on which it appeared, Arrival, by Simon Goddard, who hailed it (quite rightly) as "one of the greatest pop records ever made".

Scanning the Guardian's list, it's interesting (and occasionally horrifying ) to see which chart-topping singles from the last 15 years appear to have assumed iconic status and which older tracks might be fading in popularity as the decades pass. If it was down to me, for instance, Soft Cell's 'Tainted Love', Blondie's 'Heart Of Glass' and Queen's 'Bohemian Rhapsody' would all be placed a lot higher. The latter is described not unjustifiably as "completely inexplicable" - but it's certainly not as inexplicable as the fact that 'Old Town Road' is perched at #19...

No comments: