In the latest NME.com poll, we asked readers to vote for the greatest indie anthem of all time. A heated debate ensued, and now we’re pleased to reveal the final Top 20 list of the ultimate indie anthems. Coming in at No. 20 is The Stone Roses’ ‘I Am The Resurrection’. It’s a good thing this lot decided to reform, no?
19. Arctic Monkeys – ‘Mardy Bum’ With five tunes in the Top 20, either these lads have a ridiculously active online street team, or NME.com readers really value their music when it comes to indie anthems. Clocking in at 19 is ‘Mardy Bum’ from the band’s 2006 debut album.
18. Oasis – ‘Cigarettes And Alcohol’ Here’s one of the two tracks from Oasis to make it into our final Top 20. Who cares if people think it ripped off some other songs? Upon releasing it, Noel claimed this would be the song to make them a big deal, and by golly it did.
17. Arctic Monkeys – ‘Fluorescent Adolescent’ Considering this song peaked at No. 1 on the UK Indie Chart back in the day, it’s no surprise it’s been voted one of the top indie tunes by you lot. Plus, the video’s got clowns – which is hard not to like.
16. The White Stripes – ‘Seven Nation Army’ Speaking of clowns, ever since Jack White made that crazy collab with Insane Clown Posse, we’ve been a bit wary of his musical decisions. But we’ll never forget this beauty, which we also named the 23rd best song of the past 15 years.
15. The Strokes – ‘Someday’ Being the first of three Strokes songs in this countdown, these guys remind us that guitar music ain’t dead and that, for as long as they keep making music, it never will be. Plus, they recruited Slash to appear in this video – which can only be a good thing (unless he’s appearing in another video with Fergie…)
14. Arctic Monkeys – ‘A Certain Romance’ The closing (and standout) track from their debut album came in at No. 10 in NME‘s ‘100 Tracks Of The Decade’ list, and we’ve all continued to love it ever since.
13. Blur – ‘Song 2’ Even if you know absolutely nothing about Blur, you’ll know this one. It was their biggest hit Stateside, and it’s been (unfortunately) covered by everyone from Avril Lavigne to Robbie Williams.
12. The Smiths – ‘This Charming Man’ What indie anthem list would be complete without a bit of early Morrissey and Marr? Here we find the second single the band ever released through Rough Trade. There are a few versions of the song and the music video kicking about – but whichever one you prefer, we can all agree that it’s an ultimate indie anthem.
11. The Strokes – ‘Reptilia’ So in addition to being an indie anthem, you can now play this song on Guitar Hero and Rock Band. Despite the fact that it’s gone all mainstream, this song proved that there was more to The Strokes than just ‘Is This It’.
10. Pulp – ‘Common People’ Every indie anthem list needs some Britpop, and who better to represent than Jarvis and co.? Back in 2007, NME voted this song No. 3 in the ’50 Greatest Indie Anthems Ever’ list, and we were reminded of Pulp’s greatness during Summer ’11, when they arguably stole the festival season.
9. The Verve – ‘Bittersweet Symphony’ Remember the ending of Cruel Intentions? Just one of the many, many times this song has made the world a better place.
8. The Smiths – ‘There Is A Light That Never Goes Out’ While anticipation was building for a follow-up to ‘The Boy with the Thorn in His Side’, Moz came back with one of his finest songs (even though Marr had affirmed that he wanted to release ‘Bigmouth Strikes Again’ instead).
7. Joy Division – ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’ This song was the band’s first chart hit in the UK, and it remains their most memorable. Unfortunately, Ian Curtis didn’t live to see its success, but he was buried with the phrase “Love Will Tear Us Apart” inscribed on his memorial stone.
6. Arctic Monkeys – ‘I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor’ As suggested in the title, this is one of the ultimate tunes for any indie clubnight. Recipient of the ‘Best Track’ title at the 2006 NME Awards, this song helped further boost the Monkeys into one of today’s greatest indie rock bands.
5. The Libertines – ‘Can’t Stand Me Now’ Leading to their break-up, the tension of a crumbling friendship was well-documented in this 2004 single – which was released shortly before the band played their final show together. Fortunately, we were treated to a reunion shortly after.
4. The Strokes – ‘Last Nite’ No one expected this song to blow up the way it did, and before they knew it, The Strokes were selling out statium shows to perform it live. The Strokes brought back the guitar with this song, and haven’t looked back since.
3. Oasis – ‘Live Forever’ Couldn’t really be anything else by them could it? Simple indie genius at its most refined.
2. The Killers – ‘Mr Brightside’ Ronnie Vannucci recently told NME.com that he believed people were drawn to this song because of “the vulnerability of what the song is saying”. Whether or not that’s what you all like about it, many of you found something special in The Killers’ 2004 single, and that’s why it’s been voted the second best indie anthem of all time.
1. The Killers – When You Were Young And so to Number One. Killers fans voted in their millions and shifted this excellent, if somewhat slightly unexpected choice, into the top spot. Big tune.