Weekly Fiver #23

Welcome to the Weekly Fiver, where I’ll pick five recently released songs of varying degrees of quality and thoroughly break them down for you. No two songs will be on the same tier, and they’ll be listed from best to worst. The top song will be an excellent must-hear tune, while the bottom song will be one you ought to stay away from or else you will make your ears sad. It’s all very scientific.

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The Top 10 Radiohead Songs

Radiohead‘s acceptance of their origins has been a slow burn. It’s only recently that they began to play breakthrough classic “Creep” live again, and this year saw the re-release of OK Computer featuring long-buried B-sides that hinted at the direction they could have gone in. Instead of becoming figureheads for “smart” hipsters they could have been palling around with Robbie Williams and Take That.

That 1997 album was a bold move and paid off incredibly, but it was also the gateway to the band’s iffy experimental years. This isn’t to say that the work they’ve done since then hasn’t yielded great tunes, but the output of accessible, concise material has drastically decreased. For every “Optimistic” or “Knives Out” there was a “Pulk/Pull Revolving Doors”, “These Are My Twisted Words”, and “Feral”. It’s become apparent that the band is now actively eschewing standard pop music structure. (Strange then, that they tried to land the opening theme to the last James Bond movie).

All that said, this list stretches across their discography. It’s not one of those heretical countdowns that ignores anything from this millennium. Nor is it sheer adulation for the band’s “brave stand” against the conventions of old. There’s a little bit of everything, including some oft-overlooked songs that merit some recognition. Alright, let us go.

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Weekly Fiver #22

Welcome to a special Weekly Fiver, focusing entirely on Arcade Fire‘s new album Everything Now. It’s a decent release, but not the stellar effort we’re used to from the typically fastidious collective. There’s a lot of style over substance; Win Butler and company lean heavily on their meticulous recreation of 1970s records and as a result there are far fewer immediately memorable songs than on their previous works. It’s not a particularly melodic affair, though the cohesive atmosphere does at least show some sense of direction. The following are five picks of varying quality from the album:

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