Justification: Another regular song at the late, great 90s club Space Capsule (along with Gerling’s ‘The Deer In You’) and about half of the songs on this list, was Bis’ lively ironic-but-not-really disco number which saw them swap the brattiness of their debut album for something a bit more polished and sophisticated. The Andy Gill From Gang Of Four-produced album was a hit in Japan and was released in the US on the Beastie Boys’ ultra-cool and disappointingly brief label Grand Royal, but failed to translate elsewhere and one indie release later (the unimpressive Return to Central), they split. All three members later reconvened in the short-lived Data Panik before doing the inevitable reunion thing in 2007 (for the 10th anniversary of their debut) and they played some festivals in 2009 and 2010. However, this is from the period where it seemed like bratty Scottish teenagers were actually going to take over the world. The fact that this isn’t still a staple in indie club sets is baffling to me.
They were surprisingly good live too, by the way. They played the Adelaide UniBar behind this album and it was a blinder of a gig.
THIS TIME IN 2010: It appears I had a day off. Nice!
Justification: There’s a reason that Supergrass generally doesn’t get spoken of in the same hushed tones as other Britpop A-listers like Blur, Pulp and Oasis: they actually had a sense of humour. This was one of their greatest strengths – the jaunty ‘Alright’ broke the band worldwide in a way that their contemporaries never did – but it also meant that while the other bands were “dreamy”, “arch” and “hard”, respectively, Supergrass ended up with “goofy”. Then again, that’s what the public wanted: this was one of their biggest hits, boasted a video with the band rendered as giant puppets and – oh, ho ho ho – had the band very clearly sing “humping” instead of “pumping”. Yeah, real mature guys.
Still, one damned catchy song. They were always great live too.
Justification: “That song doesn’t normally go for three hours, but we got into a serious thing. And then I forgot how it ended.”
Seriously: do you need more justification than that? Beck’s appearance on Futurama was not just hilarious: it was fucking hilarious. The rhyming Becktionary. Cold-lampin’. Hands-in-the-air rhymes with just-don’t-care. Was there a single moment in that episode that wasn’t gold? No, there was not. And it’s important to have those moments with Beck because no matter how great his music – and it’s almost all great, by the way; for someone who first appeared as gimmicky as Dread Zeppelin he’s proved to be a shockingly consistent artist – there’s that whole weird Super-Scientology thing that seems completely at odds with his demeanour as someone who’s not, y’know, nuts. Although if there’s a crazy Beck album, it’s probably Midnite Vultures – his attempt at a Prince-style disco-funk album fails left and right in wildly entertaining ways, and finishes with a remarkably straight-faced slow-jam that Boyz II Men would have been proud to call their own. And the lead single was a killer too. He might believe in some batshit lunacy, but to give the man credit: there aren’t many people who’d go “You know what this brass-drenched dance hit really needs? A slathering of down-home banjo!” – and be completely right.