61.) Modest Mouse - Good News For People Who Love Bad News (2004)
The fact that Modest Mouse, a left of center rock band with a lisped lead singer, managed to have a bona fide Billboard hit "Song of the Summer" candidate was strange enough, that said song was a wholly unironic suggestion that in the end everything will turn out alright is one of the most wonderfully weird things to happen in pop music this decade.
"Float On" is a killer single. It works on every level and absolutely deserved to be the hit song that launched Modest Mouse into countless living rooms, but I always wonder what those "Float On" people thought when they brought Good News For People Who Love Bad News home and put it on for the first time.
They were probably on board to start. "The World At Large" is inoffensive enough and "Float On" is the barnburner and second single "The Ocean Breathes Salty" is darker, but doesn't really sound it, you know? But then it gets fun as "Bury Me With It" is a blistering assault with a trademark Isaac Brock lung shredding chorus (especially on the word "PLEASE!!!")
This is where Modest Mouse newbies either jumped off or went along for the ride. If they stuck around they were rewarded with one of the most twisted pop records of that year. "Dance Hall" is a what-the-fuck-should-have-been-a-throwaway but somehow has managed to define that record for me because it's so immediately uninviting with it's staccato arrangement and indecipherable lyrics, but fuck if it's not catchy as hell.
And from there it goes on. Good News For People Who Love Bad News is a typically reliable Modest Mouse record. It's a funhouse of left turns, quotable lyrics and definitive moments like "The View" and "Black Cadillacs." Modest Mouse, like Spoon, don't make duds. They come to play and are constantly looking to best themselves. For me personally, they are this generations Pixies only (gasp!) better. Good News may not be their best record but it still manages to find pretty good placing on this list which is about all that needs to be said in it's favor.
Posted by Pat Driscoll