Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Perfect Pop Pantheon, Vol II

Here are some aspects that make up a perfect pop song: Catchy, short, deals with love, has a memorable beat, lyrics are crisp, good chorus and, of course, has a memorable title. Well, coming in at just over 3 minutes, The Clash's "Train in Vain" fits all of those.

The last song on London Calling, "Train in Vain" (or, as it called in America, "Train in Vain (Stand By Me)") was mostly written by Mick Jones and peaked at #23 on the Billboard charts. But why didn't it peak higher? My best bet is that people still considered The Clash to be too "out there" or even too "punk" to make this a chart topper. But the lyrics certaintly are #1 material:

Say you stand by your man
Tell me something I don't understand
You said you love me and that's a fact
Then you left me, said you felt trapped

Sometimes even "The Only Band That Matters" can't catch a break.

"I Love L.A." by Randy Newman
"Train in Vain" by The Clash

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