To follow up our countdown of the 10 worst songs of the 90s we decided to compile the most ozone-layer depleting tracks from the decade which gave us Thatcher, yuppies and Sinitta. Here are the songs so wretched they force us into a foetal position somewhere on the floor.
10The Reynolds Girls – ‘I’d Rather Jack’
Pete Waterman penned this hymn to ‘rather jacking‘ than ‘Fleetwood Mac-ing‘. Well really who in their right mind would take this cheaply constructed tune instead of some ‘Tango In The Night’- era Mac? These lot were the LMFAO of their day.
Ahhaa! It’s the sound of your local Conservative MP getting drunk at the village fete, then getting “over familiar” with the youngest member of the W.I in the Punch & Judy stand. ‘Lady In Red’ was the sound of the couple from the Gold Blend ads having very loud, obnoxious sex on piles and piles of money as some miners cried in the background.
8Dire Straits – ‘The Walk Of Life’
Used and abused on You’ve Been Framed-style programmes every time they needed a soundtrack for a load of sports bloopers. This ‘concept’ even made the actual official video. And for that reason it has made the list.
7Bobby McFerrin – ‘Don’t Worry Be Happy’
Unemployment, riots, political unrest. The 80s had its fair share of troubles. But Bobby McFerrin had a simple solution; ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy!’. Simple. The musical equivalent of the saying ‘there are plenty of more fish in the sea’. Robin Williams turned up in the video to GURN THE HELL out of his face. Which, of course, had the opposite effect of being ‘happy’ for most people.
American Psycho‘s serial killer Patrick Bateman loved Huey and his news. Which is really all you need to know about this track.
5USA For Africa – ‘We Are The World’
‘Do They Know It’s Christmas’ was the right side of what a charity song should be: it was heartfelt, and actually worked as a stand- alone song. ‘We Are The World’ was not. The terrible lyrics (“We are the ones who make a brighter day/So let’s start giving“) are far too generalized to make a real impact and sound like the tag line for a bad charity ad campaign.
4Whitney Houston – ‘The Greatest Love Of All’
“I believe the children are the future/ Teach them well and let them lead the way,” sang Whitney. The Clinton Cards-esque sentiment was matched by a cheesy musical backing. Definitely The Most Condescending Song Of The Decade.
3Europe – ‘The Final Countdown’
A riff that has stayed with us, like that last coffee cream chocolate left in the Milk Tray box no-one wants to eat. Europe (can you even believe they were called that?) were a poor man’s Bon Jovi, unconvincing mullets and all.
2Kenny Loggins – ‘Danger Zone’
The theme from Top Gun was the kind of rock song written by someone consciously trying to “write a rock song.” As a rock vocalist Loggins sounded about as convincing as Orville and the phrase “danger zone” still makes me laugh. Childish, I know.
1 Beach Boys – ‘Kokomo’
AKA Mike Love’s evil plan to oust the Wilsons from The Beach Boys come to life. ‘Kokomo’ wheeled out all the beach/ sun/ surf cliches and rode with them. Its worst offense? Making us hate The Beach Boys.