on with the top 25 of the noughties;
25. Delta Goodrem - Mistaken Identity - 2004
Late November 2004 and I rushed out of college in my lunch break to buy probably my most anticipated album of all time - Delta Goodrem's Mistaken Identity. Promised to be a maturer and darker album, due to her personal life, which indeed it was, I still fell in love with it straight away. No track was more instant for me than the excellent Mistaken Identity. Referring to the Delta of old 'the girl in the chair with the long golden hair', the lyrics were harsh, honest and cutting and the song was seen as a huge risk in Australia where it was released as a single. It reached #7 there, a huge step down after her first six releases had all gone to #1!!! Risk or not, musically the song is one of Delta's finest moments - like Tori Amos at her most emphatic - and it even fits in a brilliantly executed key change and ad libs at the end!!!
24. Maria Haukaas Storeng - Hold On Be Strong - 2008
So onto the highest Eurovision song on the countdown and of course it's back over to Norway who have been on fire the last few years, easily the most dominant Western country. Norway have a way of getting classy pop songs into the top five despite having only one neighbouring country, and the excellent Maria Haukaas Storeng returned the country to the top five in 2008. Instantly a favourite of mine when I first heard it in 2008, the song fit in perfectly with the soul-pop sound of 2008. With the best opening line of any song ever - 'love can be hard sometimes, yes it can catch you off guard like bad crimes'!?! Maria's live vocal was spot on and having been planning to vote for Sweden (Charlotte Perrelli - Hero), my support isntantly went to Norway after her flawless contest closing performance and Maria became one of my favourite artists. Stunning pop song and I still really can't understand why she wasn't launched here in 2008. Hold On Be Strong and Mine All Mine were so accessible and commercial that they would have been easy top ten hits with promotion...
23. Shapeshifters - Lola's Theme - 2004
Quite easily my favourite house song of the decade, dance had been a bit weak throughout 2003 and early 2004 had showed little signs of promise with looped 80's house rubbish starting to become the norm. However, British dance act Shapeshifers, along with vocalist Cookie, changed all that with the brilliantly uplifting dance anthem Lola's Theme, written about Lola, the wife of one of the band members. A powerful vocal by a classic house vocalist, it was like the best song never released in the mid 90's and went straight in at #1 denying Rachel Stevens' electro pop classic Some Girls from the top spot. Great fairground video too - along with Natasha Bedingfield's These Words, this song absolutely ruled summer 2004 for me!!!
22. Kim Lukas - All I Really Want - 2000
The oldest song in the countdown, rewinding right back to early 2000 and I was on holiday in Tenerife. I turned on the radio and British singer Kim Lukas' All I Really Want, something of a Europop hit on the continent, came on - I recorded the song on tape and quickly became obsessed with it listening to the radio non-stop to try and find out what it was. When I got back from holiday I typed some of the lyrics into a search engine and found out, and from that moment on it became one of my favourite pop songs of all time. Nothing groundbreaking, but a cheerful pop song with a very sweet partly animated video, the song was produced by Eiffel 65 and you can hear it, the background of the song is practically identical to Blue (Da Ba Dee). It's a shame that this never got a UK release as it could have done big things.
21. Lady GaGa - Bad Romance - 2009
Onto THE song of the moment, I only first heard it less than three months ago but it's practically ruled my life ever since. To launch The Fame Monster, GaGa's own special way of doing a deluxe album repackage which featured eight brand new songs, she teamed up with RedOne again to make a song that can only be described as absolutely sensational. A killer chorus, the video of the decade, subtle nods to Poker Face throughout, the excellent 'ra ra ah a ah a GaGa ooh la la' singalong elements. The song has already been a huge worldwide hit and is still growing!!! Perfect pop song - this could well end up as one of my favourite songs of all time - but it was released just that tiny bit too late to quite catch up with the top 20 of the decade...