Sunday, 31 December 2017

Top 100 songs of 2017

100. Katy Perry feat Nicki Minaj – Swish Swish
99. Rasmus Seebach – Bli' Her Lidt Endnu
98. Ten Fé – Another Way
97. Lido feat THEY. - Not Enough
96. Sheppard – Edge Of The Night
95. Tone Damli - Pinnacle
94. Choirs With Purpose feat Michelle McManus – We All Stand Together
93. Kelde – No Reason
92. Pound Shop Boys – Fireman Sam (It's Pontypandemonium)
91. Enrique Iglesias feat Sean Paul & Matt Terry – Subeme La Radio
90. Little Mix – Is Your Love Enough?
89. Jessica Mauboy - High
88. Shotgun Fakes – Depression Intervention
87. Mariette – A Million Years
86. Sigala feat Ella Eyre – Came Here For Love
85. Kamaliya feat Anne Judith Stokke Wik – Plastic Cup
84. PANG! - One Big Laugh
83. Dacia – Muistot
82. Alyss – Pyramid
81. The Corrs – Road To Eden
80. RAM & Arctic Moon with Stine Grove – A Billion Stars Above
79. Oonagh – Aulë Und Yavanna
78. FO&O – Gotta Thing About You
77. CNCO feat Little Mix – Reggaeton Lento (Remix)
76. Lucie Jones – Never Give Up On You
75. Owe Thornqvist – Boogieman Blues
74. Taylor Swift – Dancing With Our Hands Tied
73. Saint Etienne – Obvious
72. Carly Rae Jepsen – Cut To The Feeling
71. Illusion – Run
70. Hannah Jane Lewis – Raincheck
69. Alan Walker – Alone
68. Dua Lipa – Be The One
67. The Kelly Family – No Lies
66. Steps – September Sun
65. French Montana feat Swae Lee – Unforgettable
64. Oh Laura – (Re) Release Me
63. Lorde – Green Light
62. Troll – Jimmy Dean
61. O'Neill Hudson – Lucky
60. Steps – Dancing With A Broken Heart
59. ALI – Cocoon
58. FOOL – Outcast
57. Steps – Firefly
56. Emma Watson, Luke Evans & Ensemble – Belle
55. The Fizz – Up For The Fight
54. Wiktoria – I Won't Stand In Your Way
53. Jowst – Grab The Moment
52. Take That - Giants
51. Salvador Sobral – Amar Pelos Dois
50. Missy Higgins – Torchlight
49. Saint Etienne – Sweet Arcadia
48. Jonas Blue feat William Singe – Mama
47. The Corrs – Dear Life
46. Taylor Swift – Look What You Made Me Do
45. Robin Bengtsson – I Can't Go On
44. Rak-Su feat Wyclef Jean & Naughty Boy - Dimelo
43. Steps – Dear Santa
42. Clean Bandit feat Zara Larsson – Symphony
41. Loreen - Statements
40. Balbina – Die Regenwolke
39. Jax Jones feat Demi Lovato & Stefflon Don – Instruction
38. Alma - Requiem
37. Bella & Filippa – I Think Of Yesterday
36. Delta Goodrem – Take Me Home
35. E^ST – Life Goes On
34. Huntza – Aldapan Gora
33. Emma Bale – Worth It
32. Steps - Happy
31. Calvin Harris feat Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry & Big Sean – Feels
30. Sanna Nielsen – Inte Ok
29. The Kelly Family – Fell In Love With An Alien
28. The Corrs – Son Of Solomon
27. Ace Wilder – Wild Child
26. Heavy K feat Bucie & Nokwazi – Inde
25. Francesco Gabbani - Occidentali's Karma
24. Black Motion feat Nokwazi – Imali
23. Ed Sheeran – Castle On The Hill
22. Katy Perry feat Skip Marley - Chained To The Rhythm
21. Ed Sheeran – Galway Girl
20. Tina Guo – Super Mario Bros.
19. Jasmine Thompson – Old Friends (Jonas Blue Remix)
18. Nicki French – Teardrops (On The Discofloor)
17. Ed Sheeran - Perfect
16. O'G3NE – Lights & Shadows
15. Yaşar Gaga & Sezen Aksu - Şahane Bir Şey Yaşamak
14. Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee feat Justin Bieber – Despacito
13. Kamferdrops – Jag Trodde Änglarna Fanns
12. Tom Fall - Kaamos
11. The Corrs – SOS
10. Danny L Harle – 1UL
9. Rae Morris – Do It
8. Ed Sheeran – Shape Of You
7. Rita Ora – Anywhere
6. Dua Lipa – New Rules
5. P!nk – What About Us
4. Steps – Neon Blue
3. Steps – Story Of A Heart
2. Steps – Scared Of The Dark
1. Wiktoria – As I Lay Me Down

Top of the pile this year is Swedish singer Wiktoria, with As I Lay Me Down, her entry to the Swedish Eurovision heats Melodifestivalen, which I was lucky enough to go to in Stockholm in March.

Following up her 2016 entry Save Me, As I Lay Me Down very much built on the country-tinged pop of its predecessor but added an extra retro 90s flavour. The end result was a song that sounded a little bit like something from B*Witched's debut album minus an Irish jig breakdown, and I loved every second of it.

This pure pop song stood out hugely to me in a world of generic tropical house and future bass made purely to get onto Spotify playlists. Following Melodifestivalen, where she ended up sixth despite coming second on the public vote for the second year running, the song reached No.2 in the Swedish charts and clearly had the legs to go further had the record label promoted it outside of her home country. As is so often the case, it wasn't to be but hopefully Wiktoria can still get her global breakthrough at some point as she is one of the most promising artists in Scandinavia right now.

Taking positions 2, 3 and 4 are comeback kids Steps with the excellent Scared Of The Dark, Story Of A Heart and Neon Blue. Scared Of The Dark was Faye, Lisa, H, Lee and Claire's long-awaited comeback single, actually only their first single since 2012's Light Up The Dark but the general public at large were probably not really aware of that so for most people it was their first exposure to new Steps music since 2001.

It certainly felt like a huge event, quickly smashing its way to No.1 on iTunes and succeeding where many others failed by knocking Ed Sheeran from the top of that chart. Sadly it wasn't a streaming hit of any sort and this cost it dearly, ending up at No.37 officially but at least unexpectedly giving the band their first top 40 hit in 16 years.

The track itself is a pop masterpiece. A blistering string-laden intro gives way to a classic Faye verse (she almost always starts their hits) before moving onto vocal powerhouse Claire and the biggest schlager chorus I've heard in years. Complete with a huge key change, a dance routine - naturally - and the band's first music video in 16 years, everything about this release was spot on and was the perfect way to reintroduce the band to the general public and set up a gold selling comeback album.

Follow-up single Story Of A Heart is a cover of a 2009 single by Benny Andersson Band. I loved the original version of this, written by Benny along with ABBA bandmade Bjorn Ulvaeus, but the Steps version definitely elevates it to another level. Highlights of the track include the perfect vocals - Claire sounds delicate yet stunning on the first verse while Faye smashes the second verse out of the park, 'the house by the lake' lyric delivered with such purity and clarity that she really reminds you of Agnetha Faltskog.

Special mention goes to the 7th Heaven remix, which was almost as good as the radio edit, and indeed on tour the band performed a medley combining the two versions.

Kylie-esque uplifting pop stomper and album highlight Neon Blue gives Steps three songs in my top four of the year while the ever relevant P!nk rounds off the top five with recent hit single What About Us, sounding just as good in 2017 as she did at the turn of the century when she launched her career.

Also in my top ten of the year are huge UK hit singles by Ed Sheeran (Shape Of You), Rita Ora (Anywhere) and Dua Lipa with New Rules, possibly the most quotable song of the year as she gives everyone a literal new set of modern rules to live by. PC Music icon Danny L Harle's electronic dance stomper 1UL and Do It by the eternally underrated but always genius Rae Morris complete the top ten.

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