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70. Groove Armada featuring Mutya Buena – “Song 4 Mutya (Out of Control)”
In “Song 4 Mutya,” the singer freaks out when she sees her ex with another girl, and the track cleverly features a dialogue between Mutya and her own conscience. A tribute to the ’80s, with its New Order-inspired finish and reference to Prince‘s “Hot Thing,” this is Mutya Buena’s most confident work outside her landmark British girl Sugababes. – Kevin Wicks


69. DJ Fresh – “Gold Dust”
There is no mucking about in this song whatsoever. It begins with the chorus—a four-chord turnaround with twinkling harmonies—kicks into a jackhammer beat that is slightly faster than anyone would expect and slightly unbalances the spinning top, making everything a little giddy. Then it pounds all comers into submission for a few minutes and exits, triumphant, with a train whistle at the end. – Fraser McAlpine


68. Burial – “Archangel”
The music of Burial—particularly on his second album Untrue—imagines what would happen if U.K. garage and jungle, the music heard on British pirate radio stations throughout the early ‘00s, had been the product of an intense fever dream, one in which songs appeared as if heard through a dense and crackling fog. “Archangel” is a familiar sound to anyone who has spun an FM radio dial in an urban area, and yet somehow utterly alien too. – Fraser McAlpine


67. Florence and the Machine – “Breaking Down”
Our choice of Florence track for this list may be a surprise – you might have expected us to go for her hit cover of “You’ve Got The Love” or second album Ceremonials’ leadoff single “Shake it Out.” But although it wasn’t released as a single, this song – for our money – is by far the standout from the band to date. It’s a powerful piece of melodic, anthemic baroque pop that cuts to the core. – Seb Patrick


66. Ms. Dynamite – “Dy-Na-Mi-Tee”
Snuggled into the inspirational street poetry of Ms. Dynamite’s Mercury-winning debut album A Little Deeper is this sweet rolling ode to a childhood built by family and music. She describes being put to bed in the middle of loud house parties and finding her voice as a rapper from the ground up, over a skeleton dance of marimba, scraped guitar and deep jazz bass. Oh and it boasts one of the most naggingly infectious vocal refrains in pop history. – Fraser McAlpine


65. Arctic Monkeys – “A Certain Romance”
“I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor” had the drive and the excitement, and “Mardy Bum” had the charm, but the best song on the Arctic Monkeys’ debut album was this sharp-eyed takedown of youth culture from within, one that ends with a rueful moment of self-awareness that delightfully undercuts all the finger pointing. It’s a masterfully written song arranged by a band with a ton of musical ideas to use, so they just lined up one after the other. – Fraser McAlpine


64. Mark Ronson featuring Amy Winehouse – “Valerie”
Amy Winehouse wrote raw, confessional pop songs, but as a jazz stylist, she was also a sublime interpreter of other people’s material. This genius was on display most impressively with her Motown-slick cover of The Zutons‘s “Valerie.” Amy lends lines like “Since I’ve come on home, well, my body’s been a mess” a greater poignance with her tragedienne’s drawl, and the way she purrs, “Why doncha come on over, Vaaaalerie?” offers an invitation no one could refuse. – Kevin Wicks


63. Half Man Half Biscuit – “For What Is Chatteris…”
This Merseyside-based post-punk group has been plowing their own distinct furrow since the early 1980s, and are still best known as a favorite of the late broadcaster John Peel. Their unique brand of barbed, witty satire has never troubled the charts, but they came closest with their 2005 album Achtung Bono. Aside from the popular “Joy Division Oven Gloves,” it featured this surprisingly touching track, an uncharacteristic ballad about how the gentle beauty of a small Cambridgeshire town is offset by the absence of a loved one. – Seb Patrick


62. Goldfrapp – “A&E”
Alison Goldfrapp could crank out smart, libidinous, bass-heavy tracks that were the soundtrack for many a showgirl routine. But the English singer-songwriter could also be moody and effortlessly ethereal, and “A&E,” which depicts being in a hospital after a lovelorn suicide attempt, shows how fragile and arresting her voice could be. – Kevin Wicks


61. Mis-Teeq – “Scandalous”
British music has not lacked for girl power, with groups such as Girls Aloud and Sugababes reliably releasing dance floor jams and torch songs to keep listeners sobbing. But we can’t forget this bumpin’ track from the now defunct R&B trio. It’s perfectly executed radio R&B for the ages and a well-deserved U.S. crossover hit. – Kevin Wicks

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Filed Under: British Music, Music
By staff