Friday, May 15, 2020

The Strokes' Top 37 Songs

Roger Woolman — Wikimedia Common
The Strokes are the best band. Here, one month after the release of their latest album, The New Abnormal, EIC Germar Derron ranks their top 37 songs. Each title is followed by a top comment from that title's YouTube page. Additionally, if you're lucky, maybe you'll find a video or two.  Enjoy.

37) "Heart in a Cage," First Impressions of Earth (2005) 7.5/10

"I can't believe I spent more than 10 years living life without knowing about this band..I feel like I wasted a decade..."

 36) "Not the Same Anymore," The New Abnormal (2020) 7.5/10

"Is anyone else crying? Because I'm crying"

35) "Evening Sun," First Impressions of Earth (2005) 7.5/10

"watch this song when the sun sets. pretty nice :)"

34) "Trying Your Luck," Is This It (2001) 7.5/10

"I think basically they where all sleeping with each other the strokes band juliet, the manager ...someone was getting more attention than the other ...bam great fkn music !"

33) "Is This It," Is This It (2001) 7.5/10

"How can this song be so underrated if it's the the title track of their most popular album???? "

32) "Hard to Explain," Is This It (2001) 7.7/10
"There's a reason melancholic and melodic rhyme."

31) "Meet Me in the Bathroom," Room on Fire (2003) 7.7/10

"The Strokes make me feel so nostalgic even though I never listened to them when I was younger"

30) "Juicebox," First Impressions of Earth (2005) 7.8/10

"This video depicts different types of sexuality in a way that's so unsexy and nearly disturbing. That's pretty awesome."

29) "Soma," Is This It (2001) 7.8/10

"They should have been the new Beatles..."


28) "Bad Decisions," The New Abnormal (2020) 8.0/10
"Music Industry: Rock & Roll is dying The Strokes: Not today"


27) "Threat of Joy," Future Present Past (2016) 8.1/10
"Congrats to The Strokes, specifically Julian who founded Cult Records himself, for using their musical "bully pulpit" to address important social/economic issues! Very few widely-known artists would ever risk their potential for profit from other companies by putting out controversial protests like this. Formerly being a signee of RCA like many gratuitously wealthy popular artists, this is a huge and unprecedented movement they've made. I hope they, or at least Julian, continues to exhibit that beautiful and enjoyable music can be a crucial tool for distributing truths and opinions to bring about change; no matter how long it may take. Or, at least, a tool for warning us. As for symbolism in the video, is clear in this video that we have:

a. capitalist pigs, who are quite inhumane in their use of child/cheap labor for profits

b. confiscation of important footage that will never reach the public eye, due to it's potential to cause uproar
c. distraction from the truth via basic sexual attraction and entertainment.
d. heavily armed forces arresting public protesters and stifling their movement
e. The government/businessmen of the USA believe the world and all of it's humans are at their disposal and discretion

These ideas are represented by:

a. The men dressed in pig suits, dancing with women, discussing, and throwing money around
b. Wrongful confiscation of the 'Oblivius' film, and a sign that reads "Protect us from the truth"
c. The little-black-dress walking with a charm in the 'American Globe" office, and the line of dancers that Julian's with
d. The S.W.A.T. men arresting Julian upon discovering his artistic political protest
e. The office room named 'The American Globe" Please, contribute to this comprehensive list your observations and comments!"



26) "At the Door," The New Abnormal (2020) 8.1/10
"I don't know how you all interpret the song, but the video reinforces what I believe its about; the death of your childhood, seen through the eyes of a child, in specific- Julian. The first two verses and choruses are about Julian's awareness that soon he will not be a boy any longer. That time of his life is drawing nearer to the end, and he's afraid. 'I'm never gonna make it out of here in time; I guess that's just fine' He looks at his parents less like caregivers and more like people. He's beginning to understand the monstrosities of life. He is seeing the mutant rabbit transform and attack the Julian-Rabbit. He's seeing his parents fight. He imagines his science fiction heroine oppressed and condemned to death, etc etc. He seems doomed to be nothing more than a shell of his childhood, a utilitarian mechanism that will live an empty life and one day, inevitably, die. 'I'm an ugly boy'...'lonely afterlife'...'use me like an oar' etc But then, the second movement is about is ability to act and impose his own will in a given situation. He doesn't just have to become a helpless adult, he can stand up to the monstrosities of life and at least confront them like his heroes in the stories from his childhood. The heroine breaks the chains and kills her oppressors, the rabbit breaks loose of the thicket. Its Julian's life to live, not to be a shadow or a footnote in someone else's life, but to accept the death of his childhood as a liberating force in his own life yet left to live. I connect the imagery of the science fiction story to the impetus that allows Julian to sublimate the suffering of existence into something beautiful and meaningful to him. His embrace of the death character is this acceptance and the eclipse/black hole imagery is the idea of entering the singularity of the future. Julian's still a boy, he hasn't done anything but mature, but the shadow of his future is there in the coda 'i'll be waiting from the other side'"



25) "I Can't Win," Room on Fire (2003) 8.2/10
"not a single dislike was given."
24) "Selfless," The New Abnormal (2020) 8.4/10
"The lyrics are so personal I don’t feel like I’m supposed to hear them"

23) "The Modern Age," Is This It (2001) 8.4/10

"The Strokes give me a feeling that I've never felt before. And no other band/music can make me feel that way. like a young carefree reckless summer in new york"

22) "When It Started," Is This It (2001) 8.5/10

"From Tobey Maguire Spider-Man!"

21) "The Adults Are Talking," The New Abnormal (2020) 8.5/10

"Never in the history of music has there been this good an album from a band this far down the line. This is completely revolutionary. Its just hard to tell because its only as good or better than it ever was."

20) "The End Has No End," Room on Fire (2003) 8.5/10
"easily the greatest band of the 2000's"

19) "Take It Or Leave It," Is This It (2001) 8.5/10
"No questioning it, The Strokes saved rock ‘n’ roll from being lost forever!"

18) "Reptilia," Room on Fire (2003) 8.6/10

"My gf likes the strokes so I’m doing digging to impress her and to have stuff to talk about if this ever comes up :3 I like their music a lot tbh"

17) "Automatic Stop," Room on Fire (2003) 8.7/10

"I believe this song is about how some female friend (or maybe love interest) of Julian had a crush on a dude, but the guy had a crush on Julian, and Julian was like..."wait woah, I don't like you, I never liked, you're not even my friend." But deep inside, Julian kind of had a thing for the guy but automatically stopped because he's like "it's just a phase, it's got to pass." Also, how Julian was living his life so fast, and this caused him to stop and reconsider his sexuality for a moment before realizing he didn't have non-hetero feelings. I'm not sure, but I feel like this song has at least some of these aspects in it."

16) "What Ever Happened?," Room on Fire (2003) 8.8/10

"Lyrically Julian is nasty too"

15) "12:51," Room on Fire (2003) 8.9/10
"This is that album that you inadvertently come across when something is changing in your life . Someway, somehow, you find it . You listen to it over and over again, and from that point on, it becomes the music you're familiar with when your whole life became something you didn't recognize - FJOSE #FOREVERTHESTROKES"

14) "Between Love and Hate," Room on Fire (2003) 8.9/10
"This song's extremely nostalgic to me for some reason. Never heard it until a couple months ago. Going back to this album, I'm starting to realize how great the melodies are."

13) "You Talk Way Too Much," Room on Fire (2003) 8.9/10
"tries to do a playlist without including a The Strokes song fails"

12) "Razorblade," First Impressions of Earth (2005) 8.9/10

"I met this quiet girl in my freshman orchestra class I knew her because she was friends with a girl who liked me. We started talking; well more like we started complaining about school how were doing relationships and we developed a strong friendship. She had dealt with abuse, sexual assault, neglect, she was a cutter and one of the only people I could confide in at the time when I was too. Time went by, she ended up having to move schools because of bullying. The last time I saw her her arms were mutilated basically almost died the night before on a park bench. I continued to talk to her after she moved schools through texts. My grandparents were strict so I wasn't able to go out to see her but I tried for a while to keep in touch through texts and calls but my phone broke one day. And her Facebook was deactivated. I couldn't find her info unless I reached out to her old friend who liked me that I didn't have feelings back for and is part of the reason they drifted apart. And I just assumed she'd get back on Facebook in a few weeks and we would pick right back up. A few weeks turned into a few years. And I got really curious an concerned one day and looked her up and all I found was an obituary. I was a part in this girls suicide. She needed someone I knew she did and I didn't try hard enough. I knew she's dealt with neglect and was suicidal and yet I didn't fucking try harder. My life was shit at the time an still is but it's no excuse because I'm still alive and I'm accountable. It's my fault."

11) "Under Cover of Darkness," Angles (2011) 8.9/10

"This song makes me cry. It's so beautiful and perfect. it's the combination of the chords and scales used that makes my emotions come pouring out. When the build up to the chorus starts I get an anxious feeling. Then the vocals hit me hard and they bring a lot of sadness to my mind. Melancholy and nostalgia over past events, such as no longer having certain people in my life. It's almost to much to handle. And whats funny is the verse is quiet up beat, which makes it that much more sad. Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" also makes me cry. especially when the solo comes in. Music that Pierces your heart is rare."


10) "Taken for a Fool," Angles (2011) 8.9/10

"mv director: boys, how many julians do you want? the strokes: yes"

9) "Oblivius," Future Present Past (2016) 8.9/10

"The Strokes are becoming increasingly political."

8) "Someday," Is This It (2001) 8.9/10

"My father used to have this as his ringphone theme. Since he died in 2009 I can't stop thinking about him when I listen to this masterpiece. Love you Pierluigi"


7) "Under Control," Room on Fire (2003) 9.0/10
"there's always a Strokes song for a Sofia Coppola movie"



6) "Brooklyn Bridge to the Chorus," The New Abnormal (2020) 9.0/10
"2001: the saviors of rock 2020: the saviors of the quarantine"

5) "Last Nite," Is This It (2001) 9.0/10
"Interesting Fact: Brandon Flowers (The Killers) in an interview said that when “Is This It” was released in 2001, they threw away all ideas for their songs except Mr. Brightside. It’s safe to without The Strokes, there would be no Killers, no Arctic Monkeys, no Franz Ferdinand, no Black Keys and so on. Post-Punk Revival of the 2000’s wouldn’t exist without The Strokes.Interesting Fact: Brandon Flowers (The Killers) in an interview said that when “Is This It” was released in 2001, they threw away all ideas for their songs except Mr. Brightside.

It’s safe to without The Strokes, there would be no Killers, no Arctic Monkeys, no Franz Ferdinand, no Black Keys and so on. Post-Punk Revival of the 2000’s wouldn’t exist without The Strokes."



4) "You Only Live Once," First Impressions of Earth (2005) 9.0/10
"The Strokes have me singing & smiling like there isn't a pandemic happening. So much love!"


3) "One Way Trigger," Comedown Machine (2011) 9.9/10
"I don't know any other song of The Strokes...but i can say this is a masterpiece."

2) "Happy Ending," Comedown Machine (2011) 9.9/10

"I just so happened to be in one of my favorite sports bars tonight.....I heard this song for the very first time....checked the jukebox...could not believe it was The Strokes.....muy fabuloso!!!!!!!!!!!  now this is something I can really get into..AWESOME SONG......Let's be HAPPY...this SONG PROVES THAT YOU CAN BE!!!!!!"

1) "I'll Try Anything Once," b-side from "Heart in a Cage" single release (2006) 10/10 "i can feel my heartbeat when i hear this song..."

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