This chart appeared in a Q Special sometime in the early Noughties — ’03 or ’04 perhaps.
01 Radiohead: Subterranean Homesick Alien (1997)
As suffocating and airless as a vacuum, this lays human weirdness depressingly bare.
02 Happy Mondays: Kinky Afro (1990)
Rough, shambling, baggy blues. Sounds like the Manc nutters had been rolling around the bottom of a barrel of whisky – which they probobly had.
03 Oasis: Roll With It (1995)
The brothers Gallagher know a bit about bad days. Even as millionaire rock stars they’ve managed more than their share of punch-ups and flame outs.
04 William Orbit: Barber’s Adagio For Strings (1995)
Madonna’s producer pal puts a modern polish on this classical work and inadvertently conjures nirvana.
05 Primal Scream: Loaded (1990)
You wanna get high? So did these boys. And they made this drug-fuelled rebel anthem to tell the world about it.
06 Eminem: Lose Yourself (2002)
The how-to-guide to bursting from the wrong side of the tracks, in the wrong city.
07 The Clash: Death Or Glory (1979)
The quintessential punks with brains, The Clash were smart enough to see how bleak the future was.
08 Underworld: Push Upstairs (1998)
Hypnotic techno that rolls around your ears like marbles in a jar. Soothing and urgent at the same time.
09 Sex Pistols: No Future (1977)
Pure snot-nosed vitriol from the Queen’s least-favourite band. Rotten’s furious scorn made the prospect of ‘no future’ feel like a badge of honour.
10 Pink Floyd: Another Brick in the Wall (1979)
A pulsing vein of menace runs through this track’s dense drone. Whatever you do, don’t be another brick in the all.
11 The Verve: Slide Away (1993)
The sound of grey skies, dead-end jobs and prodigious narcotic intake rolled into one.
12 The Stone Roses: Breaking Into Heaven (1994)
Combining Ian Brown’s guttural drawl and Doors-esque guitars from Squire to brilliant effect.
13 Electronic: Getting Away With It (1989)
New Order’s Bernard Sumner and The Smiths’ Johnny Marr join forces to invest the latter’s plaintive sensibility with the former’s ground-breaking pop.
14 The Smiths: Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now (1984)
“l was looking for a job and then I found a job. And heaven knows I’m miserable now.” Been there.
15 Black Rebel Motorcycle Club: Whatever Happened to my Rock’n’Roll (Punk Song) (2000)
The Anglo-Yank trio pack a punch out of all proportion to their slight frames in this blast of righteous frustration.