So I’ve been having a major nostalgia trip recently, & as it is shows no sign of abating, I figure you’re due the final instalment in my list of the 10 most underrated songs of the 1990s. I would hope that it will open up some debate and, more importantly, shine some light on some tracks that deserve more attention than they get at the moment…
- Oasis – Talk Tonight: Many people have joked that Noel Gallagher wrote all his best material before he was famous, and that this was then released as the 1st albums and accompanying b-sides – i.e. the best work Oasis ever did. However Talk Tonight, written on the band’s first tour of the US (which wasn’t going well), goes to show that he still had something in him even after drugs & booze started to kill the talent. It’s the most beautiful love letter (to someone who wasn’t a lover) set to basic guitar, hand claps & organ & quite possibly the best thing they’ll ever do.
- Goldie – Timeless (Inner City Life): Drum & bass was barely the equivalent of a toddler in terms of it’s age as a musical genre, but already Goldie wasn’t just trying to run, but run a marathon. This 21 minute epic may be a stretch too far, but when you consider how excruciatingly un-inventive many guitar bands were at the time (not the good ones, but all the followers on – Ocean Colour Scene or Cast anyone?) the ambition here alone would be worthy of praise. The fact that Timeless is an absolutely stonking track, like something Pink Floyd would have recorded if they’d grown up in the 80s rather than the 60s, is almost by the by.
- Josh Wink – Higher State Of Consciousness: Really? F**k yes! Josh Wink’s Higher State Of Consciousness was never likely to change the world, but in terms of absolutely mind blowing acid house techno or whatever, this is about as good as it ever got. And the fact that Gilles Peterson used to mix it in with jazz or something equally incongruous, only adds to the reasons why I love it. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be anywhere to download it, but the video’s at the end of this post.
- Rae & Christian – The Hush (feat. Texas): How Northern Sulphuric Soul, the album this track comes from, hasn’t been officially recognised as a national treasure, I do not know. Continuing on where Blue Lines left off, Rae & Christian pulled together a truly British blend of soul & hip-hop. And in this beautifully laid-back track they got a much better performance out of Texas’ Sharleen Spiteri than the Wu Tang Clan ever managed.
OK, so that’s my top 10 most underrated songs of the 90s (you can find parts 1 & 2 here & here). It’s seriously open to debate – I’ve tried to keep it mostly British, so there’s lots of stuff from Europe & the US that could have been included. So why not use the comments to let me know what you would have included?Goldie picture by bloshakov on Flickr