NME.com has been running for more than fifteen years now, and in that time we've seen more bangers than a Walls sausage factory. Whether you're Julian Casablancas' number one fan, a Doherty-ite 'til you die, never gave up on nu rave or a total God like Kanye, there'll be something here for everyone. Viva the 21st century and all who sail within it! Words: Priya Elan, Luke Lewis, Tim Chester, Mike Williams, Tom Goodwyn, Rebecca Schiller, Krissi Murison, Emily Mackay, Matt Wilkinson, Laura Snapes, Jamie Fullerton, Alan Woodhouse.

120This Is Hardcore

Chances are this seven minute sex-pest of a single wouldn’t have even got a look into the Top 150 if we’d been compiling it this time last year. Not because time has aged it badly, more that it had overlooked it entirely. Thank God for reunion tours then. When Pulp reformed for their summer 2011 shows, it was ‘This Is Hardcore’ - the slow-creeping orgy of pop noir and perversion (from 1997’s criminally underrated album of the same name) - that was the fitting but unexpected climactic centrepiece. What exactly did they do for an encore? ‘Razzmatazz’ as it happens, the night I saw them. (KM)

119We Need A Resolution

Timbaland always saved his best beats for his ‘baby girl’ and ‘…Resolution’ was no exception. On her final, self-titled album this was the haunting lead single; a song about questioning a relationship's compromise when it seems pointless (someone would always come off worse off). The whole thing was piqued by an underwater, Egyptian-riff that gave the song a disorientating, three-dimensional atmosphere, as if the whole crisis was a bad dream and the ‘resolution’ was to be found by waking up. Timbaland would spend the following decade attempting to re-capture a moment as innovative as this. (PE)

118All My Friends

Lost in the loneliness of the road? Undone by the glare of the spotlight? Or just buckling under the inherent solitude of being James Murphy? Who knew, but ‘All My Friends’ is an eight-and-a-half-minute tale of aching disco-angst, a confessional Kraut rocker about the ephemeral nature of friendship and fame. In a song where time passed through fingers like grains of sand, the keyboard riff begins nervy and twisted, ending up rolling along like an all nighter. “That’s how it starts,” James Murphy sings, his vocal shadowed by the knowledge that every beginning is also an ending. (PE)

117What's My Age Again?

Few songs capture the urge of wanting to act stupid and be immature as well as this 2000 single does. The lead-off track from Blink's phenomenally successful album 'Enema Of The State', this is everything pop punk does well. Its guitar riffs seem to have been soaked in Relentless and its chorus makes you want to jump around the room. It's been imitated thousands of times since, but nothing's come close to this perfect two and a half minutes. (TG)

116Gravel Pit

On which a soul legend, Bruce Lee, and a French TV series combine to provide an unlikely bedrock for one of Wu Tang’s biggest tracks. The sax break from ‘It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World’ sits next to clips from Enter The Dragon and the theme from ‘60s show Belphegor while the crew, including RZA, GZA, Method Man, Ghostface and Raekwon, do their thing over the top. The video? Why it sees the band transported to 2,000,000 BC to roam with dinosaurs – before a massive samurai fight - of course. (TC)


Before Pigeongate, before the stage storm-offs, before the snooty, overpriced clothing line, before that rather embarrassing flop of an album, these Southern gents howled their way into our hearts with hits like this one. There was something about Caleb’s unnervingly blood-curdling, bone-chilling shrieks in this song that we just couldn’t get enough of. ‘Charmer’, along with the rest of the tracks on that album (‘Because Of The Times’), proved that KOL were still arguably one of the best things in American rock at the time. (RS)


What a way to go out – 'Accelerator' was the last single released on Alan McGee's Creation label, and in terms of exits, it's pretty much as dramatic as leaving a party in a fighter jet. The Scream's 'XTRMNTR' album was a boundary-pushing mesh of industrial chrome-rock-pop, but this was simply a punk blast that shook the walls of the charts and sent one of the most influential labels of all time off in raucously jagged style. (JF)

113One Armed Scissor

The lead-off single from the masterpiece that would both make and ultimately destroy At The Drive-In, 'One Armed Scissor''s jagged riffs and pummeling rhythm section are fused perfectly to make a peerless rock floor filler. Although, it sadly serves as a reminder of what the band could have achieved if they hadn't imploded a few months later. As well as all this, it's easily the best song ever to be named after a vodka/Red Bull. (TG)

112Fuck You

Given Gnarls Barkley had mainly been viewed as another achievement in producer Danger Mouse's ever-growing list of platitudes, no one was expecting too much from Cee Lo Green's solo output. But after hearing this, all skepticism was chucked out the window. Taking all the joyful exuberance of classic Motown and jamming his tongue as far into his cheek as it would go, Green created a worldwide smash that's still on most radio stations' playlists over a year after it first came out. (TG)


It’s the song that made them huge, making Union Jack dresses and platform heels all the rage in the late 90s. It’s the song that made us all want to “zigazig-ha”, without knowing what the hell it meant. From the moment it kicks off with Mel B’s hearty laugh, you know you’re in for a treat. ‘Wannabe’ was the ultimate song about 'Girl Power' and friendship, and everyone from pre-teen girls to grown men appreciated it (whether or not they admitted it). (RS)

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