Monday, May 20, 2019

#1. One-hit Wonders: "Sleeping Satellite" - Tasmin Archer (1992)

More than just my top one-hit wonder, this is easily one of my favourite songs period.

It can be easy to overlook a somewhat low-key pop song from the early 90s, a key high-water mark in music history as multiple genres (grunge, dance, rave, hip hop, Garth Brooks) were all producing memorable tracks. 

But Tasmin Archer's debut single "Sleeping Satellite", from the ironic album title Great Expectations, is nothing short of a pop masterpiece, a special song full of wonder that only comes around every blue moon.

Everything is beautiful about this song: the synth intro, the dreamy melody, Tasmin's inspiring vocals, the subtle guitar, the soaring bridge once the organ kicks in and a great vocal outro. 

"Sleeping Satellite" has both soul and groove, an exquisite slice of hypnotic pop.

And how about the depth of those lyrics. 

Archer talks about relationships using the moon landings as a metaphor. She asks her lover "Did we fly to the moon too soon? and "Have we peaked too soon?" now that both of them are clueless about what to do with their relationship after a great start.

The tune hit #1 on the UK charts, while only peaking at #32 in the US, more evidence that my musical taste is more aligned with the Brits. In fact, the first time I ever heard the single was when I lived in Vancouver enjoying a "UK Chart Attack", a Top 40 program broadcast on a local radio station. 

Sunday, May 19, 2019

#2. One-hit Wonders: "You Get What You Give" - New Radicals (1998)

Nostalgic. Fun. Satirical. 

Sometimes a band comes out of left field and whacks us over the head with an irresistible pop song. "You Get What You Give" by New Radicals is one such shining example. 

The song is more than just another hit single. It's a really, really, really catchy tune. 

And a juggernaut. 

The frenetic rhythm of the piano melody and frontman Gregg Alexander's soaring falsetto drive the relentless pace. 

Despite some cynical lyrics tearing up the world of celebrity, "You Get What You Give" is also one of the most feel good tunes ever produced. The uplifting "You've got the music in you" lyric is downright spiritual. 

My only beef: the low blow against Beck near the end.   

Why no encore you may ask. Well, the New Radicals didn't break up for any complex reasons; Alexander just really didn't like fame or success. 

Saturday, May 18, 2019

#3. One-hit Wonders: "Lady (Hear Me Tonight)" - Modjo (2000)

The disco-influenced house hit single "Lady (Hear Me Tonight)" by French duo Modjo is a major throwback. Now almost twenty years old, I would consider this track in the timeless category. 

That catchy guitar riff is a Chic sample that impeccably accompanies the bass-fueled groove. 

The nostalgic video featuring various shenanigans of three teenagers perfectly captures the spirit of youth.

Friday, May 17, 2019

#4. One-hit Wonders: "Rapper's Delight" - The Sugarhill Gang (1979)

How lucky were the teens growing up in NYC during the late 1970s? You would have lived first-hand and up close the birth of punk, new wave and the same time! 

The rhythm and rhyme anthem "Rapper's Delight" by The Sugarhill Gang skyrocketed rap into the mainstream. A strong bass line and snappy guitar riffs add a funky vibe to the mix.

Hard to believe the seminal rap track is 40 years old this year. Perhaps a 40 minute freestyle tribute is in order?

Even more hard to believe: the Sugarhill Gang never had another U.S. hit single, though it had multiple European hits.

Fave lyric: "hip-hop-to the hippitty-hop and you don't stop" 

Thursday, May 16, 2019

#5. One-hit Wonders: "Bound for the Floor" - Local H (1996)

Detractors of "Bound for the Floor" by Local H will argue this post-grunge tune aka the copacetic song, is both repetitive and derivative. 

But I think the repetition is deliberate -- it is an anthem celebrating apathy after all.

The almost robotic and stoic delivery of the chorus creates a hypnotic vibe.

"And you just don't get it. You keep it copacetic. You learn to accept it. You know you're so pathetic." 

The intensity builds as the droning vocals become squeals as the guitars crash. Ultimately, it's the sort of tune best enjoyed cranked up. 

The single reached #5 on US Billboard in 1996. 

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

#6. One-hit Wonders: "Cars" - Gary Numan (1979)

Another iconic intro only bested by an even more mesmerizing outro. 

The track is among the most popular new wave anthems that paved the way for the 80s.

Numan's metaphorical lyrics of a car as a personal tank is pop genius. 

Influenced by Kraftwerk and David Bowie, the shiny synth classic "Cars" by Gary Numan sounded like the future in 1979. 

And in 2019 it still sounds like it could have been released last year.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

#7. One-hit Wonders: "In the Meantime" - Spacehog (1996)

It's not hard to see the Bowie and Queen influences on the glam-grunge anthem "In the Meantime" by Spacehog. 

And what an amazing intro! The instantly likable tune opens with an engaging sixty second instrumental intro, complete with synths, simple bass line and falsetto tones from frontman Royston Langdon. Easily among my favourite top 20 intros of all-time. 

The chorus is memorable, and the track concludes with a nice piano solo. I'll always remember cranking it from the company van during my map sales gig Vancouver in spring 1996. 

Although the music gets a bit repetitive, "In the Meantime" nonetheless remains a powerful and iconic mid-90s track that left me begging for a follow-up that never happened. 

Monday, May 13, 2019

#8. One-hit Wonders: "Your Woman" - White Town (1997)

If you prefer your bass lines on the fat side then you'll love "Your Woman" by White Town.

The tune sounds simultaneously retro and futuristic. A vocal sample from the 1930s along with the black and white video are fused with a hip hop beat and electro. 

The song instantly brings me back to JJ's in Halifax while the song itself could be a prototype of the Gorillaz sound a few years later. 

While only peaking at #23 in the US, the single reached #1 in the UK and #4 in Canada.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

#9. One-hit Wonders: "Magic" - Pilot (1975)

Scottish pop rock band Pilot churned out the instantly catchy and melodic single "Magic" that peaked at #16 in Canada back in 1975. 

The "oh-oh-oh" vocal hook adds some extra shine to this snappy and giddy tune.

During the 90s, the infectious track attracted a new generation of fans thanks to its inclusion on the 1996 Happy Gilmour film soundtrack.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

#10. One-hit Wonders: "I Know" - Dionne Farris (1995)

Was there a decade that produced more high-end one-hit wonders? My vote goes to the 90s. Easily...

"I Know" by Dionne Farris is an irresistible feel-good groove. The highlight is the epic bridge, taking an already solid tune into the stratosphere. Lightning in a bottle.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

#1. "True Faith" - New Order (1987)

I always feel so extraordinary when I listen to this song. 

An addictive song about dealing with addictions, "True Faith" by New Order has always been a go-to track throughout the years.

First, and as corny as it may sound, "True Faith" got me through my first breakup. 

Musically, it's a band playing at its peak in 1987 with everyone making notable contributions: from Stephen Morris' dramatic drumming to Peter Hook's melodic bass and Gillian Gilbert's danceable synths. 

The surreal video shows costumed dancers slapping each other and hopping on gym mats to the beat of the tune.

It's also the song that cracked the band in North America. 

But it's Bernard Sumner's honest vocal delivery of poignant and edgy lyrics about the struggle we all experience that puts this track over the top. 

The "morning sun" take on the old adage of a "tomorrow's another dayis proof we all get another chance.  

Fave lyrics: "I feel so extraordinary / Something's got a hold on me / I get this feeling I'm in motion / A sudden sense of liberty"

This is a song that keeps sounding better. Although the instrumental bridge is amazing in the original single, the replacement guitar solo improves it as shown in this recent concert clip from Berlin below.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

#2. "Things Can Only Get Better" - Howard Jones (1985)

Just hearing the first few seconds of "Things Can Only Get Better" by Howard Jones releases the dopamine and always puts me in a great mood.

The song is one of my favourite cheerleading anthems, a reminder that adopting an optimistic attitude towards whatever the problem may be is half the battle.

It's also a reminder of how great music was in the 80s. 

And whoever said that synth has no soul has obviously never heard of this tune.

The rambunctious beat, the bursts of brass and an uplifting falsetto chorus are the obvious highlights. But it's the "Whoa, whoa whoa whoa oh oh-s" in the refrain that liberates us from all our worries.  

Fave lyrics: "It may take a little time a lonely path, an uphill climb / Success or failure will not alter it"

Friday, March 29, 2019

#3. "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" - Tears For Fears (1985)

"Everybody Wants to Rule the World" by Tears For Fears is one of Gen X's greatest anthems, this stunning song is a bit cynical yet also ambitious and optimistic.

One of those rare tunes with a near-universal appeal, it resonates with just about everyone. Is there a catchier song from the decade that also touches on the issues du jour like the environment, yuppies and the Cold War? 

From the profound and ambiguous lyrics that make you think, the vocals, and of course the incredible arrangement. The short but captivating vocal bridge is out of this world just before the sweeping synths and guitars kick in for a longer instrumental one.

The uplifting vibe of "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" puts me in a great mood despite the lyrics being a bit on the cynical side. The song only reinforces the type of music I love best: melodic music and dark lyrics.

The lyrics challenge us to live life to the fullest (at the time it was during the Cold War of course) by taking full advantage of its pleasures and liberties before the true nature of the world, war and turmoil, come back again as per the history books.

Fave lyrics: all of it is so thought-provoking. But if I have to choose it's the universal truth of the opening line: "Welcome to your life / there's no turning back...".

One of the best driving songs ever made, "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" always makes me want to put the top down and hit the gas. Even in the winter.

The classic video features Curt Smith driving an antique sports car around Southern California interspersed with shots of the full band performing the song in a studio.

My deep affection for the track has a lot to do with the timing of its release. In the spring of 1985 I'd just gotten my contacts and in the midst of a personal re-branding of sorts: I had the feeling I could do anything I wanted to in life. After getting my license days later, it was one of the first songs I cranked in Dad's Ford Escort hatchback. 

When I hear this song today i still get that same feeling. So I'm destined to never, ever tire of this tune. That's some powerful nostalgia.

#4. "Just Like Heaven" - The Cure (1987)

That sweeping layered 50 second instrumental intro is right up there with the best intros of all time (love those cymbal splashes!).

And the rest of the song isn't too bad either. In fact, it's pure ecstasy. 

The churning, shimmering guitars, the melodic synth, the driving beat. The piano at the bridge. 

Combine this with Robert Smith's passionate vocals and poignant lyrics and "Just Like Heaven" is also probably my favorite love song. 

But of course like many of their tunes, it has a twist and not a happy ending. But that's ok because it's all about the journey, albeit a short one at three minutes and nineteen seconds.

Proof that The Cure can produce a pop song as good as anyone from an era of classics.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

#5. "Something About You" - Level 42 (1986)

There's something about "Something About You" by Level 42 that's hard to pinpoint that make me look forward to hearing it again and again

Could be the amazing bass line. 

Those epic falsettos and the harmonies. 

Or perhaps the delicious chorus.

Can't forget about that surreal video, with the lead singer playing the Vaudeville clown in the engaging video.

In fact, it was all of those aspects and more: "Something About You" is simply a perfect pop song with a little R &B and synth tossed in. All the right hooks in all the right places.

All those little things that combine together to make me appreciate the whole of the song.

The tune still transports me back to when Dad used to drive me home for lunch back in Grade 11. The great ones will do that to you, take us back upon hearing the first note. 

Pure nostalgia.

Fave lyrics: 
"These changing years, they add to your confusion
Oh and you need to hear the time that told the truth"

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

#6. "Wrapped Around Your Finger" - The Police (1983)

As a young teen I'd always been mesmerized by "Wrapped Around Your Finger" by The Police. I still am, 36 years later on headphones. So mellow, yet so hypnotic.

The magic of Sting's melodic and lyrical prowess, Andy Summer's sparse effective guitar and Steward Coupland's intricate drum work all reach new heights on this textured tune.

From the lighting of the first candle, the video had always entranced me. 

The obscure literary references in the verses made me flip through the encyclopedias as Sting found a creative way to weave in such words as apprentice, Charibdes, Mephistopholes, tuition, fruition, and from the iconic bridge, alabaster.

And what a bridge! It never fails to give goosebumps. Both lyrically and musically, the tune picks up the tempo when the tables are turned on the master and servant relationship dynamics in question as "You'll be wrapped around my finger". Captivating stuff.  

The simple "I'll be wrapped around your finger" chorus shimmered. The synths are hauntingly beautiful.

Decades later, I still dream of knocking all those candles down at the end of the video like Sting did when he channeled the 'boy inside the man'. 

Fave lyric: "Devil and the deep blue sea behind me".

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

#7. "Strangelove" - Depeche Mode (1986)

"Strangelove" wasn't the first song I liked from Depeche Mode; but it was the one that sold me.

There is so much to appreciate here: the punchy synth, the deep bass, the entire production is irresistible. And it's moody as hell.

The original single release was deemed by the band to be too poppy and not dark enough for the Music for the Masses album, so they produced a darker mix known as "Strangelove '88" that became the group's first #1 dance hit in the US.

The dark lyrics navigate the territory between pleasure and pain; and appear to be about going off the grid, of being emotional unavailability of sorts. A perfect teen anthem.

Fave lyrics: "I'm always willing to learn, When you've got something to teach"

Monday, March 25, 2019

#8. "West End Girls" - Pet Shop Boys (1986)

Recorded in one take, "West End Girls" by the Pet Shop Boys originally missed the UK Top 40 in 1984 until re-recorded with producer Stephen Hague. Once slowed down and the story told a little clearer, the single vaulted to #1.

"West End Girls" isn't just another synth-pop song: it's intellectual pop. The song creates a cityscape in your head. 

The music was inspired by hip-hop artist Grandmaster Flash's "The Messagewhile the lyrics inspired by TS Eliot's poem 'The Waste Land'. The lyrics recount the class tensions and inner-city pressure in London, specifically how the boys from the East End of London pine for rich girls from the West End.

The street chatter and car horns intro followed by hypnotic synths before Neil Tennant's dead-pan vocals immediately grab our attention. But it's that unforgettable bass-synth hook and cryptic lyrics that keeps bringing me back to live vicariously in the "dead-end world". 

Watching the video as a 17-year-old verified that a much bigger world laid out there waiting to be explored.

When Joelle and I visited London in 2012, I couldn't help but point out the many famous London landmarks shown in the iconic video:
- Waterloo Station
- a No 42 red double-decker bus to Aldgate
- Tower Bridge
- Westminster Palace Clock Tower
- the South Bank
- Leicester Square

Fave lyrics: "Which do you choose. A hard or soft option"

In 1993, New Zealand-based artist Flight of the Conchords paraodied "West End Girls":

Sunday, March 24, 2019

#9. "Eyes Without A Face" - Billy Idol (1984)

"Eyes Without A Face" is two tremendous songs for the price of one. 

The first half sees a chill Billy Idol crooning a ballad, with no screaming nor squealing guitars in sight. The synths are dreamy and laid-back.

One of the best hooks of the decades, I've always loved the female vocals leading into the chorus. The angelic "les yeux sans visage" harmony literally translates the track’s name, and encouraged me to translate other pop singles of the day into French. 

The second half is a complete 180 turn. 

Kicking in around 2:25, the minute-plus bridge features a Steve Stevens' guitar riff slashing through while Billy goes on a road trip bender whilst "trying to stay hip".

Billy returns to do his best Sinatra impression to wind up the power ballad.

#10. "Major Tom" - Peter Schilling (1983)

"Major Tom (Coming Home)" by Peter Schilling will always remind me of the space shuttle missions in the 80s.

The song is a sort of a sequel, an homage to David Bowie's astronaut character ("Space Oddity" and "Ashes to Ashes") who cuts off communication with Earth and floats into space.

The melody is so addictive, and the glorious exploding chorus with the 4-3-2-1 countdown is a natural singalong. I can't help but feel a little sappy while watching the video and imagining Major Tom looking down on Earth. 

So what happened to our hero? The sweeping melodramatic finale sounds like he made it home. 

In space.

On one hand, Major Tom may be left drifting out in space, unable to return to Earth. But perhaps that was his intent all along: could it be he just wanted to go away to some place, a new home, and not have to answer or reply to anyone?

Since the song was originally written in German perhaps something is getting lost in translation or interpretation. I'd be interested in a German's take on all this.  

Fave lyric: "This is my home. I'm coming home."

Here's the original German version:

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Bonus 10: songs rediscovered too late to add

I admitted earlier that picking 100 favourite 80s songs was not an easy task.  

Even after pouring over a myriad of music charts and falling down countless YouTube rabbit holes, I still missed a few hidden gems. Thankfully, friends on Facebook shared some of their favourites including some diamonds in the rough. 

Many of the next 10 tracks could have easily slotted in between the 80 to 100 positions several weeks ago on my countdown. These "top ten too late to add" are ordered by year of release:

"Innocence" - Harlequin (1980)
The best of the Canadian releases from the 'April Wine' era will always remind me of when we built tree forts in the woods. Shout-out to Lee Turner for sharing this rock classic as his fave 80s Canadian tune.

"You Should Hear How She Talks About You" - Melissa Manchester (1982)
A long-forgotten solid radio staple until I recently saw it on a year-end chart.

"Twilight Zone" - Golden Earring (1982)
A K-Tel compilation special with a great bass line and a killer chorus.

"Space Age Love Song" - A Flock of Seagulls (1982)
Get lost in the whirling drumming, swirling synths and dreamy lyrics.

"Melody" - Boys Brigrade (1983)
I've been obsessed with playing this long-lost nostalgic Canadian new wave tune since Debbie Roberts posted it as her fave Canadian 80s track (and thanks to Joel Deveau for the mp3). I recall enjoying it in my small room growing up in the trailer court. 

"The Lebanon" - The Human League (1984)
The band known for their synths replaces them with a seriously hypnotic bass line and a soaring guitar riff. Not a typo. 

"Beatbox" - Art of Noise (1984)
An English early hip hop classic.

"Birds Fly (Whisper to a Scream)" - Icicle Works (1984)
Paul Lalonde reminded me about this catchy slice of dreamy pop from post-punk England.

"No Promises" - Icehouse (1985)
Australian group with obvious Bowie influences on this atmospheric number with great synth hooks.

"Theme from S-Express" - S'Express (1988)
Old school house anthem I rediscovered from sifting through a few hundred top 10 80s lists posted on this amazing site. Word of caution: this site is highly addicting!

#11. "A Forest" - The Cure (1980)

After having bought the "Standing On A Beach" singles collection in the mid-80s, "A Forest" was the song that hooked me on The Cure, making me double-down to explore the rest of their deep catalogue. 

A former all-time favourite, I no longer binge listen to it. Brooding guitar, ominous bass and haunting keys all build a relentless atmospheric tension. Years later, it would have fit right on the soundtrack for The Blair Witch Project

The song is utterly brilliant and taps into a primal part of my brain. 

"A Forest" has such an edgy presence and creates a feeling of unease, over-the-shoulder glancing, shivers down the spine and general claustrophobia. This is a song best enjoyed in solitude, cranked up high on headphones or on a stereo with a good set of speakers.

By the time the second verse is over I'm totally gripped, lost inside a dream inside my head. The throbbing bass, the pounding drums and the synths are all working overtime. After the bridge, I imagine running in the woods in the dark as the guitar jangles and dangles.

Fave lyrics: "The girl was never there, it's always the same, I'm running towards nothing again and again and again..."

Below is a video of an almost 14 minute long live version from The Cure's Wish tour in 1992. It's far and away my all-time favourite live version of any song. I love how it builds then quiets down only to build back up again (and again and again....). Robert Smith even gives us a bonus, an extra verse as a sort of second bridge before the tune explodes for the grand finale. 

I can listen to it again and again and again...

Friday, March 22, 2019

#12. "Bizarre Love Triangle" - New Order (1986)

"Bizarre Love Triangle" is probably the catchiest of New Order's singles and the one most recognizable for music fans.

After years of experimentation, New Order had perfected the use of synths and drum machines by 1986. The result is a pop masterpiece. 

In terms of layers of electronic music, this song is near the top of the pedestal. 

So many gorgeous, magical highlights:
- the opening lyric is impressive: "Every time I think of you / I feel shot right through with a bolt of blue."
- the swirling synths interlude in the pre-chorus
- the undulating pacing of the chorus
- Hooky's bass as the foil to the euphoric synths and strings

A superb song to zone out to on headphones and a great groove for the dance floor.

The most bizarre thing about this song: it never charted well, peaking at a dismal #98 on Billboard and #53 in Canada.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

#13. "Pale Shelter" - Tears For Fears (1982)

One of the first Brit invasion songs to catch my attention back in 1982, "Pale Shelter" by Tears For Fears is among the very best from this era. It seems ludicrous now that the single only peaked at #15 in Canada. 

The song is completely memorizing: from the get go in the intro an acoustic guitar pleasantly strums along with the ubiquitous synths making a truly magical sound. 

I was always captivated by this video and the hundreds of paper airplanes tossed out the school windows, reminiscent of similar antics by David "The Pilot" in Mr. McInness's Grade 7 English class at Prince Arthur Junior School.  

I wonder if Hampton Court Palace staff will supply us with paper airplanes to toss in unison from the ramparts during the bridge when we see the band live in London this June. Or maybe we'll just have to bring our own?

While Roland Orzabal sings most of the hits on the 1985's Songs From The Big Chair, Curt Smith's softer vocals are a better fit for this melancholic number. 

Fave lyric: "When all I want to be is, completely in command." 

If you enjoy this track then you'll love this live version from 1983:

The 2016 single "Secrets" by The Weeknd has introduced the Millenials to Tears For Fears and other 80s artists, as the song samples vocals from both "Pale Shelter" and "Talking in your Sleep" by the Romantics. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

#14. "This Charming Man" - The Smiths (1983)

"This Charming Man" is the most iconic song in The Smith's repertoire: a veritable Marr & Morrissey masterpiece.

Johnny's Marr's trademark jangle guitar kicks it off and shimmers the rest of the way.  

Vintage Morrissey lyrics articulate obscure and elegant literary references delivered with verve. 

The bass is catchy, almost funky making the rhythm punchy, the melody upbeat. 

The buoyant and bubbly song is just so darn uplifting; imagine that for a second, from a band often branded as being miserable.   

The tune is short and sweet, clocking in at less than three minutes. Dare I say this "This Charming Man" rivals a typical single from The Beatles.

Fave lyric: “I would go out tonight / But I haven’t got a stitch to wear / This man said, ‘It’s gruesome/ That someone so handsome should care'”

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

#15. "It’s My Life" - Talk Talk (1984)

"It's My Life" by Talk Talk is a synth-pop masterpiece and pure magic: both song and video.

A soaring chorus, warm synths and a catchy bass line carry it along.

In the video the animals for the most part are in the sync with the sounds: check out when the whale breaches and the running ostrich. Perfect. 

The nostalgia factor cuts deep, as I find myself wondering whatever happened to all those animals in the zoo and in nature. 

It's a powerful and even joyous tune that should make us want to follow our dreams and respect and protect the natural world. Not a bad ROI on a 80s new wave tune.

No Doubt's cover in 2003 charted higher than the original which is a minor travesty.

Monday, March 18, 2019

#16. "Under the Milky Way" - The Church (1988)

"Under the Milky Way" by Australia's The Church is one of the most beautiful songs ever made. In terms of atmosphere and production, it's hard to top this.

The acoustic strumming sets the tone, the keys are melodic and the vocals and lyrics are perfect. The layers of jangle guitars and synth is extraordinary.

It also makes you think; think about the big things like your own existence, the universe, and why they don't make music like this any longer. 

The song is also highly addictive: I recall playing it 10 times straight after losing my job in Vancouver back in 1996.

It would place even higher if it wasn't for the bloody 'bagpipe' solo in the bridge. I don't hate it,  but it slightly ruins the ambiance. Fortunately, the tune reverts to the moody strumming and ends well with some nice reverb.

Fave lyrics: "Leads you here despite your destination. Under the Milky Way tonight."

And I totally missed it back in 1988 when released. 

Was I too busy wrapped up listening to the back collection of The Cure, Depeche Mode and New Order to notice?

Was it even released in Canada? (Wikipedia states it reached no. 69 on the Canadian RPM 100). 

When the dust settles, it's by far the highest ranking song of my top 100 80s singles that I don't recall enjoying during the 80s.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

#17. "Never Let Me Down Again" - Depeche Mode (1987)

The second single from Music For The Masses only reached #22 on the UK charts. 

Despite its modest chart success, "Never Let Me Down Again" is quite possibly Depeche Mode's most powerful jam.

And one of its darkest. 

The synths pulsate relentlessly and hypnotically.

An addictive song about drug addiction; or is it about trust?

David Gahan nails the vocals with a chorus that soars across the sky.

Absolutely perfect. And addictive.

Fave lyrics: 
"We're watching the world pass us by 
Never want to come down
Never want to put my feet back down"

"Never Let Me Down Again" is a fan favourite at concerts as per this live clip: