3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Essential for anyone who claims to be serious about music,
This review is from: This is Uncool: The 500 Greatest Singles since Punk and Disco (Paperback)
The last thing we need is another shuffle of the blessed rock canon list. You know, the worthy and dull albums you're supposed to be in awe of but only bought because of critical hype and rarely play. This is a desperately needed antidote to all that rockist tedium. Firstly, the author is choosing singles over the sacred album... heresy, but all the more fabulous for it. Secondly, he has the nerve to really mix it up and his choices will have rock snobs frothing at the mouth. Disco, Madonna, house hits, soul, synthpop, even the Spice Girls all rub shoulders with the more 'credible' stuff. The choices are admirably catholic, much like an issue of the old NME, which is no surprise given that Mulholland was on their payroll in its heyday (long before it became a lamentable comic for 14 year old indie boys). Mulholland fully gets what pop is about - it's that 3 minute gem that grabs you coming from a builder's transistor radio, fairground ride, or youth club disco.
It's hard to fault the man's choices (although his love for hip hop is where we part company and he does get a bit tedious banging on about race). But his writing is very persuasive and well-researched. You think you know these songs but I'll guarantee you'll know them better after reading this book. It's all here, close to three decades of fads, fashions, thrills and, yes, art. From those glorious pop groups (ABBA, Blondie, Pet Shop Boys, the Smiths) to hipster classics, Garry Mulholland's selection of 500 great singles is a 'must have' reference book for any self-respecting music lover. This is beyond cool.