Monday, 14 April 2014

The Best Of 2002 - part 4

JUMP TO: 100-76 II 75-51 II 50-26 II 25-1


In case you hadn't already noticed, by 2002, reality TV talent quests were taking over the world. In Australia, after leading the initial charge with the Popstars series, we were falling behind the times while, in the UK, Popstars successfully morphed into Popstars: The Rivals and two groups were formed, and the phenomenon of Pop Idol was launched.

Gareth Gates proved you didn't have to win a reality show to become a star

Working at Smash Hits, we saw the power a reality TV star like Gareth Gates had to sell magazines in the UK. Every issue of our sister publication (which still came out each fortnight compared to our monthly edition) either had Gareth as main cover star or his spiky-haired head as an inset photo strategically placed on the top right corner of the cover.

Not since girl groups and boy bands had there been such hope for teen press to shift magazines - and we couldn't wait for Idol to come to Australia. Until then, I made do with these pop hits from 2002...


Number 25 "Stronger / Angels With Dirty Faces" by Sugababes
Narrowly missing out on a spot in my top 10 Sugababes songs of all time, this double-A side was the third single by version 2.0 of the girl group. Destined for the pop dumper after the departure of founding member Siobhan Donaghy and the termination of their record contract, Sugababes went through the first of their many revamps, drafting in Heidi Range as third member and teaming up with Richard X for mash-up cover version "Freak Like Me" (number 14 on this list). A second UK number 1, "Round Round" (number 7), followed and by the time "Stronger/Angels..." was released and also made the UK top 10, it was clear Sugababes were going to take some getting rid of.




Number 24 "Butterfly" by Kylie Minogue
Passed over for "Please Stay" as the fourth single from Light Years, "Butterfly" ended up being released as a promotional single in the US (which is enough for me to include it here). In truth, the majority of tracks from Light Years (except "Bittersweet Goodbye") could've been singles, but, after the relatively disappointing performance of "Please Stay", attention quickly turned to the Fever album and the release of "Can't Get You Out Of My Head" in late 2001. In 2002, three more singles were lifted from Fever, "In Your Eyes" (number 63 on this list), "Love At First Sight" (my number 1 for the year) and the Grammy-winning "Come Into My World" (number 70).




Number 23 "Alive" by S Club
Just as "Bop Bop Baby" (which we saw back in Part 1) had been a UK chart disappointment for Westlife in 2002, so too was "Alive" a relative failure for S Club (who'd dropped the 7 following the departure of Paul Cattermole). I say "relative" since the song did reach number 5 in Britain, but given it was the lead single from a new album and they'd never charted lower than number 3, it was a definite comedown. More tellingly, the album from which it was taken, Seeing Double, which also served as the soundtrack to the group's feature film, only managed a lowly number 17 after three straight top 3 placings with their previous albums. Looked like the writing was on the wall for S Club, although, as we'll see, there was a backup plan...




Number 22 "Addicted To You" by Laura
Here's the second of those Eurovision entries to make my top 100 for 2002, and this time it's the Finnish entry by Laura Voutilainen, which actually placed lower than the song by Manuel Ortega, who we saw back in Part 2. So, if the two songs I liked did so poorly that year, what won Eurovision? It was Latvian entry "I Wanna" by Marie N - a song I had successfully blocked from my memory... until now.




Number 21 "Dilemma" by Nelly featuring Kelly Rowland
It wasn't just Beyoncé who branched out from Destiny's Child in 2002, with band-mate Kelly Rowland also enjoying extra-curricular success and, in fact, landing the first number 1 single outside of the girl group. Granted, that success was only as featured vocalist, but "Dilemma" was definitely a case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts - even those who award Grammys agreed, with the song winning the Best Rap/Sung category.
For Kelly, it was the start of a solo career that's been unpredictable to say the least, while Nelly was on a hot streak, with "Dilemma" coming soon after "Hot In Herre" (number 67 on this list), the two tracks turning him from just another rapper into a bona fide star. Of course, the fact Nelly and Kelly were rumoured to be dating didn't hurt at all - although it seems that was never actually the case.




Number 20 "Emerge" by Fischerspooner
Thanks to the power of the internet to spread the word, new genres proliferated in the new century and every musical subculture had a chance to flourish. Electroclash was one of those new sounds - and the duo comprised of Warren Fischer and Casey Spooner was one of its key exponents. Debut single "Emerge" took a couple of releases to stick, but it heralded the arrival of an important new act in electronic music.




Number 19 "One Step Closer" by S Club Juniors
Meanwhile, nothing heralds the demise of a music act more than the arrival of a newer, younger version - with S Club Juniors' debut indicating that S Club 7's record label knew the clock was ticking on their former cash cow. Originally formed to support S Club 7 on tour, the eight-piece mini-me version proved so popular they were given their own record deal. Not bad for a bunch of kids with an average age of 12 years old. 
Despite their exceedingly young age, it was hard to resist the charms of "One Step Closer", written by no less a team than Cathy Dennis, and ex-Dead Or Alive members Tim Lever and Mike Percy. The song became the first of a hat trick of number 2 hits in the UK, and would be covered two years later by American Juniors, a group formed by American Idol spin-off American Juniors.




Number 18 "One Love" by Blue
While their pop group contemporaries (Steps, S Club, Hear'say) were falling apart around them, boy band Blue went from strength to strength in 2002 with the release of One Love, which became their second chart-topping album in the UK, and more hit singles in the shape of this title track, All Rise's "Fly By II" (number 50 on this list) and a duet with Elton John on a remake of "Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word" (number 55).




Number 17 "Crush (1980 Me)" by Darren Hayes
Given he'd sold millions of records as part of Savage Garden with ballads, it made perfect sense for Darren Hayes to start his solo career with a song like "Insatiable", which gave him another Australian and UK hit (although it failed to connect in America, effectively spelling the end of his career there).
But, just as I was always more interested in Savage Garden's upbeat tracks, so too did I much prefer tracks like this ode to the '80s and "Strange Relationship" (number 45 on this list) from Darren's debut solo album, Spin. Ever the good sport, Darren talked through each one of this track's '80s references in an interview I did with him for Smash Hits - a useful service given plenty of our readers weren't born until 1990.




Number 16 "Caught In The Middle" by a1
The final stage in a1's transition from cheesy, smiley boy band to serious, instrument-playing, songwriting pop act was achieved with this lead single from third album Make It Good. And then, just as it looked like they might have some chance at longevity, the album's title track bombed, Paul Marazzi quit the group and the other three members decided to call it a day. The story wasn't quite over, with the remaining trio of Ben Adams, Mark Read and Christian Ingebrigtsen reforming in 2009, and appearing in this year's season of UK reality show The Big Reunion.




Number 15 "I'm Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman" by Britney Spears
Mentioned below

Number 14 "Freak Like Me" by Sugababes
Mentioned above and previously featured here

Number 13 "Got To Have Your Love" by Liberty X
Mentioned below

Number 12 "Here To Stay" by New Order
With its song title that could only have pleased New Order's legion of fans (who'd previously waited from 1993 to 2001 for a new studio album), "Here To Stay" was taken from the soundtrack to 24 Hour Party People, the biopic about the band's label, Factory Records. A stand-alone single (which also appeared on a couple of New Order's many compilation albums), the track was co-produced by the band and The Chemical Brothers. As it turned out, however, it would be a three-year wait until any further new music.




Number 11 "Dove (I'll Be Loving You)" by Moony
Some Italian house now - and this was the debut single by the vocalist born Monica Bragato, who'd previously recorded with Spiller and also appeared on DB Boulevard's "Point Of View" (number 33 on this list) in 2002. The DB Boulevard track was notable not just for its cute animated clip but also for sampling "Heatwave" by Phoenix and "Drowned World/Substitute For Love" by Madonna. Unfortunately, neither Moony nor DB Boulevard would be heard from again outside Italy.




Number 10 "Moi... Lolita" by Alizée
Next, it's off to nearby France for the debut single by 15-year-old Alizée Jacotey. Well, that's how old she was when "Moi... Lolita" was originally released in France in 2000. It took a couple of years for it to cross over to the UK (where it reached number 9) and come to my attention. One of the only songs in a foreign language to chart well for me, it was co-written and co-produced by French music legend Mylène Farmer, who'd made a star out of Alizée after she appeared on a French TV talent show. The song was her only hit across the English Channel, but Alizée has continued to remain in the public eye at home, recently appearing on the French version of Dancing With The Stars.




Number 9 "Everything" by M2M
We saw this Norwegian duo back on my top 100 for 1999 with their debut single, "Don't Say You Love Me", and in 2002, Marit Larsen and Marion Raven returned with their second album, The Big Room, which featured this lead single and follow-up "What You Do About Me" (number 68 on this list). The girls visited Australia on a promo trip at the time and I recall taking them shopping at Sydney's Pitt Street Mall for a Smash Hits photo story. Priceline was a big hit with them.




Number 8 "Cherry Lips (Go Baby Go!)" by Garbage
The band's biggest (and only top 10) hit here in Australia, "Cherry Lips" is as pop as Garbage ever got - unsurprisingly, it's my favourite song of theirs, although I was also a fan of all the singles from Beautiful Garbage, with follow-up "Breaking Up The Girl" just missing this top 100.




Number 7 "Round Round" by Sugababes
Mentioned above and previously featured here

Number 6 "Anyone Of Us (Stupid Mistake)" by Gareth Gates
The Pop Idol runner-up's debut single had been a cover of Simon Cowell's favourite song to inflict on the public: the dreary "Unchained Melody", but for his second release, Gareth received the Cheiron treatment. Well, the handiwork of former Cheiron songwriters and producers Jorgen Elofsson, Per Magnusson and David Kreuger, who'd been behind massive hits for Britney Spears, Westlife and many more pop acts. The Scandipop style suited Gareth and the song was an instant UK number 1. While it was my favourite single by either Gareth or Will at that stage, the tables would turn in a major way in 2003.




Number 5 "Brand New Day" by GT
Of the many records released by Simon Lewicki either under his Groove Terminator alias (shortened to GT at this stage) or as part of groups like Chili Hi Fly, this is the only song to make any impact on me - but what an impact it did make, becoming my favourite locally produced track for the year.




Number 4 "Anticipating" by Britney Spears
The singles from Britney kept coming in 2002, but many of them I wasn't that keen on - like the remake of "I Love Rock 'n' Roll" and "Boys". I did like this cutesy pop track, which was only released as a single in France, and "I'm Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman" (number 15 on this list), which was co-written by Dido and appeared in Britney's feature film debut, Crossroads, in a particularly memorable scene where Britney's character learns the song in five seconds.




Number 3 "Just A Little" by Liberty X
In 2001, the British edition of Popstars created Hear'say, while the other five members of the show's final 10 banded together as Liberty. Two so-so singles and a band name dispute later, Liberty X emerged as a more cohesive unit and, by the end of 2002, had outlived Hear'say altogether. Key to their longevity was this third single, which became a UK chart-topper and went on to win the BRIT Award for Best Single. They followed "Just A Little" with a cool cover of "Got To Have You Love" (number 13 on this list) - which had originally been recorded by Mantronix and appears on my top 100 for 1990 - and for the time being were one of the UK's biggest pop acts.




Number 2 "Love Foolosophy" by Jamiroquai
All the stick Jay Kay gets kind of makes sense, what with music videos like this that show off the extensive grounds of his estate and boast of his theoretical pulling power (Heidi Klum plays his love interest). None of that bothered me and "Love Foolosophy" became my favourite single by his band - surpassing "Canned Heat" and "Little L" despite not being as big a hit on the international charts as either of those songs. Granted, it was the third single from A Funk Odyssey (the fourth, "Corner Of The Earth", is number 42 on this list), but it did feel like interest in Jamiroquai was starting to wane around this point.




Number 1 "Love At First Sight" by Kylie Minogue
Mentioned above and previously featured here


My top 200 for 2002 in full:

1        LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT Kylie Minogue
2        LOVE FOOLOSOPHY Jamiroquai
3        JUST A LITTLE / ALMIGHTY MIX Liberty X
4        ANTICIPATING Britney Spears
5        BRAND NEW DAY GT
6        ANYONE OF US (STUPID MISTAKE) Gareth Gates
7        ROUND ROUND Sugababes
8        CHERRY LIPS (GO BABY GO!) Garbage
9        EVERYTHING M2M
10      MOI… LOLITA Alizee
11      DOVE (I’LL BE LOVING YOU) Moony
12      HERE TO STAY New Order
13      GOT TO HAVE YOUR LOVE Liberty X
14      FREAK LIKE ME Sugababes
15      I’M NOT A GIRL, NOT YET A WOMAN Britney Spears
16      CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE a1
17      CRUSH (1980 ME) Darren Hayes
18      ONE LOVE Blue
19      ONE STEP CLOSER S Club Juniors
20      EMERGE Fischerspooner
21      DILEMMA Nelly featuring Kelly Rowland
22      ADDICTED TO YOU Laura
23      ALIVE / ALMIGHTY MIX S Club
24      BUTTERFLY (REMIXES) Kylie Minogue
25      STRONGER / ALMIGHTY MIX / ANGELS WITH DIRTY FACES Sugababes
26      LOVE WILL FIND A WAY Bardot
27      FANTASY Appleton
28      MY VISION Jakatta featuring Seal
29      SHAKE UR BODY Shy FX and T Power featuring Di
30      DIE ANOTHER DAY Madonna
31      AT NIGHT Shakedown
32      BABY DON’T DANCE Steps
33      POINT OF VIEW DB Boulevard
34      SOUND OF THE UNDERGROUND / STAY ANOTHER DAY Girls Aloud
35      HUNGRY Kosheen
36      DJ / ALMIGHTY MIX H & Claire
37      STAY paulmac featuring Jacqui Hunt
38      SMILE TO SHINE Baz
39      A THOUSAND MILES Vanessa Carlton
40      THE LAND OF MAKE BELIEVE allSTARS
41      YOU S Club 7
42      CORNER OF THE EARTH Jamiroquai
43      HALF A HEART H & Claire
44      THE LAST GOODBYE / BE WITH YOU Atomic Kitten
45      STRANGE RELATIONSHIP Darren Hayes
46      KISS KISS Holly Valance
47      ALL EYEZ ON ME Monica
48      COLOURBLIND Darius
49      GIRLFRIEND *NSYNC featuring Nelly
50      FLY BY II Blue
51      IT JUST WON’T DO Tim Deluxe featuring Sam Obernick
52      LEAP OF FAITH David Charvet
53      BOHEMIAN LIKE YOU The Dandy Warhols
54      EVERYWHERE Michelle Branch
55      SORRY SEEMS TO BE THE HARDEST WORD Blue featuring Elton John
56      ALL MY LIFE Foo Fighters
57      NEVER KNEW LOVE Stella Browne
58      NO MATTA WHAT (PARTY ALL NIGHT) Toya
59      DON’T LET ME DOWN / YOU AND I Will Young
60      BEAUTIFUL Christina Aguilera
61      ALL OUT OF LOVE / BEAUTY AND THE BEAST H & Claire
62      JUST THE WAY YOU ARE Milky
63      IN YOUR EYES Kylie Minogue
64      SEXUAL GUARANTEE Alcazar
65      FEEL LIKE I DO Sneak
66      WHAT’S YOUR FLAVA? Craig David
67      HOT IN HERRE Nelly featuring Dani Stevenson
68      WHAT YOU DO ABOUT ME M2M
69      MORE THAN A WOMAN Aaliyah
70      COME INTO MY WORLD Kylie Minogue
71      OTHERWISE Morcheeba
72      GONNA MISS YOU paulmac featuring Abby Dobson
73      SAY A WORD Manuel Ortega
74      PUT YOUR ARMS AROUND ME Natural
75      NASTY GIRL Destiny’s Child
76      HEAVEN DJ Sammy & Yanou featuring Do
77      SHOULDA WOULDA COULDA Beverley Knight
78      LIGHT MY FIRE Will Young
79      NO MORE DRAMA / TWIN REMIX Mary J Blige
80      WHEN I LOST YOU Sarah Whatmore
81      BIMBO (I NEED TO KNOW) Lambretta
82      FULL MOON Brandy
83      ENVY Ash
84      US AGAINST THE WORLD Play
85      DON’T PANIC Logo featuring Dawn Joseph
86      DON’T SAY GOODBYE Paulina Rubio
87      THE DAY IT RAINED FOREVER Aurora
88      LIKE I LOVE YOU Justin Timberlake
89      DANCE WITH ME 112
90      HIT THE FREEWAY Toni Braxton
91      SUGAH Ruby Amanfu
92      NU FLOW Big Brovaz
93      WHEN YOU LOOK AT ME Christina Milian
94      MUSIC GETS THE BEST OF ME Sophie Ellis-Bextor
95      OH BABY Rhianna
96      I CAN’T WAIT Ladies First
97      BOP BOP BABY / ALMIGHTY MIX Westlife
98      SYMPHONY OF LIFE Tina Arena
99      HELLA GOOD No Doubt
100    (TAKE ME AWAY) INTO THE NIGHT 4 Strings
101    ONE DAY IN YOUR LIFE Anastacia
102    NO MORE TEARS Modjo
103    ALL YOU WANTED Michelle Branch
104    KIDS Kelli Ali
105    WHEN YOU’RE LOOKING LIKE THAT Westlife
106    BREAKING UP THE GIRL Garbage
107    I WOULD DIE 4 U The Space Cowboy
108    RESURRECTION PPK
109    DIRRTY Christina Aguilera featuring Redman
110    ONE STEP TOO FAR Faithless featuring Dido
111    RUN Lighthouse Family
112    IT’S OK Atomic Kitten
113    HOME & DRY Pet Shop Boys
114    HARDER Kosheen
115    GIRLFRIEND Alicia Keys
116    JUST A LITTLE GIRL Amy Studt
117    ADDICTED TO BASS Puretone
118    FROM HERE TO ETERNITY Natalie Browne
119    LIFE GOES ON / ALMIGHTY MIX LeAnn Rimes
120    FOREVER NOT YOURS a-ha
121    I DON’T WANNA LOSE MY WAY Dreamcatcher
122    FEEL Robbie Williams
123    2’S COMPANY Charlton Hill
124    FASCINATED Raven Maize
125    NEW DIRECTION S Club Juniors
126    FLOWERS IN THE WINDOW Travis
127    SOUTHERN SUN / READY STEADY GO Oakenfold
128    MY CULTURE 1 Giant Leap featuring Maxi Jazz & Robbie Williams
129    B WITH ME Mis-teeq
130    WHAT ABOUT US? Brandy
131    GANGSTA LOVIN’ Eve featuring Alicia Keys
132    WISH I DIDN’T MISS YOU (REMIX) Angie Stone
133    I’M RIGHT HERE Samantha Mumba
134    I DO!! Toya
135    HAPPY Ashanti
136    AUTOMATIC HIGH S Club Juniors
137    GIVE IN TO ME Rogue Traders
138    STEREO FLAVAS Hi Fi Mike
139    ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE / EVERGREEN Will Young
140    ELECTRICAL STORM U2
141    ACTION Saint Etienne
142    BRAND NEW DAY / DO THE THINGS Wicked Beat Sound System
143    ALL I WANT IS YOU Rockmelons featuring Jeremy
144    TOLD YOU SO Freestylers
145    THE LONG AND WINDING ROAD / SUSPICIOUS MINDS Will Young / Gareth Gates
146    THE WORLD SHE KNOWS / ALMIGHTY MIX dmac
147    DON’T YOU WANT ME Alcazar
148    WE ARE ALL MADE OF STARS Moby
149    RECKLESS GIRL The Beginerz
150    BEFORE YOU LEAVE (TWISTED) Pepe Deluxe
151    BELIEVERS Baz
152    HAPPY Lighthouse Family
153    IN THIS WORLD Moby
154    GET OVER YOU / MOVE THIS MOUNTAIN Sophie Ellis-Bextor
155    HOW COME YOU DON’T CALL ME Alicia Keys
156    I AIN’T PLAYIN’ Rockmelons featuring Roxanne
157    STAR GUITAR Chemical Brothers
158    I WANT TO Wicked Beat Sound System
159    U-TURN Usher
160    I’M GONNA BE ALRIGHT Jennifer Lopez featuring Nas
161    STILL WAITING Sum 41
162    BE COOL Paffendorf
163    HEY BABY No Doubt
164    THE GREATEST HIT Annie
165    PUT THE NEEDLE ON IT Dannii Minogue
166    ROLL ON / THIS IS HOW WE DO IT Mis-teeq
167    THE TIDE IS HIGH (GET THE FEELING) Atomic Kitten
168    PRAY Lasgo
169    SHUT YOUR MOUTH Garbage
170    LUV DA SUNSHINE Intenso Project
171    I NEED A GIRL P.Diddy featuring Usher & Loon
172    DON’T MESS WITH MY MAN Nivea featuring Brian & Brandon Casey
173    U DON’T HAVE TO CALL Usher
174    THE GAME OF LOVE Santana featuring Michelle Branch
175    STOLE Kelly Rowland
176    SACRED TRUST / AFTER YOU’RE GONE (I’LL NEVER STOP LOVING YOU) One True Voice
177    GOLD Beverley Knight
178    DRIFTING AWAY Lange featuring Skye
179    ALWAYS ON TIME Ja Rule featuring Ashanti
180    JAMES DEAN (I WANNA KNOW) Daniel Bedingfield
181    TAKE IT EASY 3SL
182    LOVIN’ IS EASY Hear’say
183    SHINY DISCO BALLS Who Da Funk featuring Jessica Eve
184    WAY LOVE’S SUPPOSED TO BE Selwyn
185    WAY BEYOND Morcheeba
186    IT TAKES MORE Ms Dynamite
187    SO LONELY Jakatta
188    NAUGHTY GIRL Holly Valance
189    EXTREME WAYS Moby
190    TO GET DOWN Timo Maas
191    4 MY PEOPLE Missy Elliott
192    GET ME OFF Basement Jaxx
193    ENVIOUS Dawn Robinson
194    ONE OF THOSE DAYS Whitney Houston
195    MY EVERYTHING 98 Degrees
196    DY-NA-MI-TEE Ms Dynamite
197    GOODNIGHT LOVERS Depeche Mode
198    SUGAR RUSH A*Teens
199    WHY DON’T WE FALL IN LOVE Amerie
200    FOOLISH Ashanti


Next up: 2003, of course. ETA: later this month. Before that, we go back to 1989 as usual on Wednesday for my regular ARIA chart recap from 25 years ago.


MY YEAR-END CHARTS

1979 II 1980 II 1981 II 1982 II 1983 II 1984 II 1985 II 1986 II 1987 II 1988 II 1989
1990 II 1991 II 1992 II 1993 II 1994 II 1995 II 1996 II 1997 II 1998 II 1999
2000 II 2001 II 2002 II 2003 II 2004 II 2005 II 2006 II 2007 II 2008 II 2009
2010 II 2011 II 2012 II 2013 II 2014 II 2015 II 2016


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