The Singles Jukebox
Kanye West Comedy Jam

album Chart Notes: The Scissor Sisters are back! Their album’s up ten to twelve, and to celebrate, Wes plays ‘Hey Mama’ by The Black Eyed Peas instead. Later we get ‘Paradise City’ off G ‘n’ R’s best of. ‘Sweet Child O’ Mine’ is better, but this isn’t too bad. I’m in a better mood. Oh, hang on, Anastacia’s your new number one. We celebrate by being told that “She’s known as ‘the woman with the big voice’” and hearing clips of songs off her previous albums. Nothing gets played off her new one, aside from a snatch of ‘Left Outside Alone’. Mmm-hmm.

New Entries Outside The Top 20: Simply Red #40 (Mick Hucknall sings the Lighthouse Family); Dilated Peoples ft. Kanye West #35 (competently dull conscious hip-hop, supposedly a ‘party jam’. No fun, no problem, probably); Norah Jones #30 (her first ever hit single, and… well, it’s as you’ve heard and seen written about several times elsewhere. I have nothing more to add. It’s OK); and Basement Jaxx ft. JC Chasez #22 (Probably my favourite off ‘Kish Kash’ if no-one else’s—JC falsettos it up nicely, and the backing is basically the Jaxx banging about in a faux-arrhythmic style amidst squeaking, except smashing. Should’ve been much higher than this, and yet it wasn’t. Oh well).


20) JENNIFER LOPEZ ft. R KELLY – Baby I Love You!

Right, let’s get the football out of the way early then. We beat Wolves 4-1 yesterday. Paul Sturrock is king of football. This week’s miracle - Claus Lundekvam scores his first ever goal for Southampton after seven and a half years at the club:

It wasn’t as good as Rory Delap’s goal, but then, very few things are.


Actually, the Lopez’s track isn’t that bad really. Very nicely arranged and produced, and she doesn’t make too horrid a mess of the vocals. I just don’t happen to like her very much. This isn’t awful either, though possibly I’m still giddy from the thought of Claus Lundekvam scoring. Sturrock’s view on the goal: "I'm very pleased for him but he was at fault for (Henri) Camara's goal so I'm still going to slap him about a bit."

I repeat: Paul Sturrock is King Of Football.

18) ALICIA KEYS – If I Ain’t Got You (NEW ENTRY)

She’s the future of soul, says The Observer. This is ‘old-school’, which you may have noticed because it features a trumpet. Alicia bellows about how she doesn’t want anything if she ain’t got you. There are lots of scales. Notes are slapped about with abandon. She sings a bit high. She sings a bit low. She’s basically Katie Melua with some very loud knobs on, isn’t she?


This, though, is the proper stuff. The Sisters are back in the top twenty with a celebration of coming out to your mother by way of going gay clubbing with her and getting her drunk as Colin Pluck. Their love of humpy-clumpy pianos is to the fore and carries the whole glorious enterprise along splendidly, Ana Matronic squawks a bit, and they even manage to get away with The Acoustic Guitar Strum Of Ultimate Wankness (c.f. Turin Brakes’ ‘Pain Killer’) such is the sheer joy that runs through it all. Great things!

16) WILL YOUNG – Your Game

Similarly great too! Isn’t it weird how one new entry can turn the shit around? This is great enough on its own, obviously, but that Scissor Sisters single has suddenly given me a quite dangerous dose of optimism about how things will be going for the first time in ages. And to think, I had been considering just putting Prolapse lyrics in place of actual comments this week…

15) SUGABABES – In The Middle

The lyrics of this are trying to throw me off, and yes, it is ‘just another Sugababes single’, following their well-worn path right down to the beat dropping for Heidi’s vocal, but that’s better than, oh…

14) THE DARKNESS – Love Is Only A Feeling

This, at which point rainclouds instantaneously gathered outside my window. Not awful. Not much better than that, though.

13) JAMELIA – Thank You

And now the sun’s out again. Which is odd, yet appropriate.

12) PET SHOP BOYS – Flamboyant (NEW ENTRY)

The sky’s gone all stable now. This is the other new track off the PopArt collection, following on from ‘Miracles’, and it’s very lovely. A return to their big synthy roots, Mr. Neil ruminates on the life of the famous person, and though the whole package isn’t quite as hard-sounding as it used to be (here, the beats bubble where they once slammed on ‘Heart’ and the like) it’s still dead nice and sweet. They’re older now, but still better than most.

11) NERD – She Wants To Move

And my mood’s lifted this afternoon, so I’m back to nodding to the beat as opposed to moping in anticipation of whatever shit the top 10 has to throw at my freshly-washed jumper. This is good, yes.

10) OUTKAST – The Way You Move

Hmm. It appears to be OK for Radio 1 to play ‘nigga’ in the daytime now. The intro to this is very good, but then Big Boi starts rapping. He has got a very dull voice, hasn’t he? It’s all quite disjointed—the chorus is very nice, with Sleepy Brown cooing over the horns, but then it’s back to the verses and Big Boi mumbles about something over a bassline and nothing else, and that’s just rubbish, really—there’s nothing to grab the attention. The man can definitely adjust his lapels, though, I’ll give him that.

9) KANYE WEST – Through The Wire

Is it just my philistine nature here, or is this not all that different from ‘Reigns’, Ja Rule’s notably dire single from a few months ago? I mean, Kanye’s got a better voice and flow and lyrics than Ja Rule, but this is because Ja Rule is The Ultimate Plonker. Kanye West is not a plonker—he’s producing everyone nowadays and he’s on two of the singles in the top 10 this week—but he’s not really that interesting either. He goes on about his jaw being wired and how he’s doing this with his jaw wired, and yes, well done, but did you actually have to specifically record a song about your jaw being wired just to show you can? Is that not just showing off? Also— “they say I got bloodclots but I’m not Jamaican” isn’t anything like as good a line as he thinks it is. I don’t hate Kanye West, but I’ve no idea what there is to love about him either.

8) ATOMIC KITTEN – Someone Like Me (NEW ENTRY)

Their ‘farewell single’. A piano tinkles quietly. “Let your emotions run free/With someone like me/That’s the way it should be/Someone like me.” It’s over in two minutes. Jenny’s going to make dance music, Liz is going to try and be ‘the British Delta Goodrem’. Though they are gone, the wrongness lives on.


Phwee-nerr wee-nerr…

6) BLUE – Breathe Easy


5) ANASTACIA – Left Outside Alone

It is her best single ever. But why did it have to be sung by her, for fuck’s sakes? I mean, the intro’s great, the spoken-word bit wonderful, but she’s glaoowauw-ing all over the place… I can’t do it, I just can’t get past it. There’s no way that I can bring myself to like how she sings it, it’s too straight, too obvious, too by-the-book… I don’t believe in it. Which does piss me off, really it does.

4) DJ CASPER – Cha-Cha Slide

The instructions make no sense at all. Fuck it. “Five stomps this time!” does actually feature five stomping noises. Fantastic.


This helps redeem Mr. West’s reputation a bit, oddly. Jamie Foxx appears to be the feller that comes off it best, oddly, singing very smoothly over the chorus, and then you start to think everyone else is taking the piss. Twista is the world’s fastest rapper, and the beat is trying to go smoothly, while he’s spluttering all over it. It’s the odd bits that you can hear, though, that spring up and slap you in the face— “I’mma make your sheets wet listening to Keith Sweat” being chief among them. It doesn’t work, it doesn’t work at all… but I think I might like it. Kanye West’s bit is still dull, though. Also—the repeated namechecking of Ready For The World. I’ve only heard one Ready For The World track, that being ‘Love Me Right’ or ‘Oh Sheila’, I’ve forgotten which it was called. It was rubbish, and it was also responsible for Angel City’s even worse cover of it last year. Which does turn me against this, but I might forgive it in a bit.


And I still ain’t going for this.

1) McFLY – Five Colours In Her Hair (NEW ENTRY)

You see, I hate Busted, because when they first came out they always seemed to be on telly. McFly may well have been on telly all the time too, but I didn’t notice, so I don’t hate them that much, if at all. This is actually a very good song—the lyrics are still a bit irksome, being as they are about a character from yoof drama As If, but it’s a nice little jangly Britpop-esque number, like the Bluetones when they aren’t terrible, lots of ‘doo-doo-dodo-doo’’s and so on, and this very nice little breakdown in the middle where it gets all quiet and they get all mournful for some reason, then start ‘doo-doo-dodo-doo’-ing again and everything’s alright forever. Third-best number one this year, and not as backhanded a compliment as it might sound either.

By: William B. Swygart
Published on: 2004-04-05
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