Shock! A blog post not about Doctor Who! (And with a slightly misleading title - sorry 1D fans, this isn't for you..)
With the recent announcement of the Mercury Prize Nominations (an award I still only have roughly 1% of a clue about), there seems to be a lot of talk about the best albums and artists. I'm quite proud that I own an album from the shortlist - it makes me feel almost up to date with music. Most surprising is that that album I own is Villagers "Awayland" - which has to be the least cool album ever written. The songs have amazingly complicated and crafted lyrics - but none of them are conventional hits, and a lot of them aren't even conventional modern music. All the same - Villagers reached the shortlist. Well done them. Or him. It's quite hard to keep track.
So if I was to put together my own shortlist of albums - it would probably be quite short and quite bias, because I haven't listened to that many really. So instead, I'm going to pick twelve songs from the last decade that would receive a prize from me. Amongst those twelve songs there will be seven artists - five with two "best" songs in, and then two 'wildcard' choices from different artists. Then, at the end, if I can, I will pick a song that should essentially be my favourite of all time.
A. KEANE: BEDSHAPED
The first of two Keane songs, I knew Bedshaped before I knew the band who sung it. Aside from Will Young, Keane were probably my first "serious" singers, and Bedshaped is therefore one of my first ever songs. It is beautiful, the video is awesome - and if you haven't heard it, you haven't lived.
B. KEANE: SOMEWHERE ONLY WE KNOW
Perhaps a predictable Keane choice - it's the one everyone's heard of - but it is amazing. The best ever feel good song, yet with depth to the lyrics. It truly is a great song, and even if you think you don't know it, you will have heard it. There won't be any later Keane songs - and why? Because they're not the best, simple. Perfect Symmetry, Atlantic, Bad Dream - they're all great, but they're not quite to the standard of these two.
C. HURTS: SUNDAY
I'm a bit mad about Hurts at the minute. When Mum first discovered them for me (cheers, Mum), I wasn't impressed. When I first listened to their first album I wasn't impressed. But then something clicked. Probably the music videos, especially for songs like Blind, Wonderful Life and of course, Sunday. The video for Somebody to Die For is what made me get back into their music - and I'm so glad I did. Although Sunday has the most predictable lyrics ever - the music and feel of the song is amazing.
D. HURTS: WONDERFUL LIFE
There are so many good Hurts songs. Blind, Exile, Silver Lining, Better than Love, Evelyn, The Road, most of them in fact. But Wonderful Life is another feel good song with depth - and it has the feel of an 80s song, while staying modern. Plus - one of the lyrics includes the word 'Severn', and as someone who goes to Wales a lot, that appeals.
E. FLORENCE + THE MACHINE: HOWL
I wasn't sure who to pick next, but because there are so many options for wildcard at the minute - two Florence + the Machine songs seemed like a good choice. Howl is breathtaking - and literally, if you tried singing it I imagine. It's powerful, and just a great piece of music. Some of the lyrics are really strong - and obscure - and so it's a perfect song.
F. FLORENCE + THE MACHINE: BLINDING
Although Rabbit Heart, Cosmic Love, My Boy Builds Coffins (I love that song) and No Light, No Light were contenders - Blinding is another song with weird and awesome lyrics. Therefore - it earns a place here. It's hauntingly good.
G. BASTILLE - POMPEII
Probably the only conventional choice on here - I love this song. It's addictive and it's just awesome all round.
H. BASTILLE - NO ANGELS
Normally I hate people who release covers - but Bastille's "mixtapes" are not only free, they're also ingenious. No Angels combines The XX and TLC (both were unknown to me at first) with some other singer who's not bad, in a great song. And there's Psycho dialogue. Psycho! It was really hard picking a cover of Bastille's I liked best - and their recent cover of We Can't Stop (yes - that one) is amazing.
I. TOM ODELL - ANOTHER LOVE
This. Is. Perfect.
J. TOM ODELL - GROW OLD WITH ME
Tom Odell is great, and although some of his other songs sound fairly similar to each other, Grow Old With Me and Another Love are distinct and are just awesome. I can't say there were many other contenders from songs he's done... yet.
K. MUSE - ANIMALS
Picking a David Bowie song was quite hard. There's a few I like, but not love. So I went for Muse, because there's more of them I love. Sorry, David. Animals is a strange choice, because I didn't like it at first. But it's one of the most memorable for me, and it's a very powerful song.
L. MUSE - UNDISCLOSED DESIRES
This was so hard. There are so many amazing Muse songs that I love - but it's a question of favourites. A favourite song of all time, for me, so far. And this one, although one of their most boy band like, is one of their best. Uprising, Supremacy, Animals, Take a Bow, Madness - they're all great. It's so hard.
THE TOP FIVE
#5 BEDSHAPED - Keane
I was originally going to give this to Bastille, but Bedshaped is the oldest song I know, as I said before - so it needs a place in my top five.
#4 WONDERFUL LIFE - Hurts
A beautiful song, well deserving of a place in the top five.
#3 SUNDAY - Hurts
Both Hurts songs made it - Sunday's amazing beat earns it a place in third.
#2 SOMEWHERE ONLY WE KNOW - Keane
This would probably have earned the top spot over most of my life... But something is just a little bit better.
#1 ANOTHER LOVE - Tom Odell
You probably guessed from my description - but the decision to give this top spot has been made a whole day after I wrote that, so there you go.
I hope you enjoyed my brief Music blog! I should point out another few good songs if anyone's interested. London Grammar's "Wasting my Young Years", Villagers' "Nothing Arrived", "Home" and "Earthly Pleasure", David Bowie's "The Next Day", "Valentine's Day" and "The Stars" - and the entire Hurts collection.