THE BLOG

Was 2005 a Better Year for British Music Than 1995?

01/08/2013 17:56 BST | Updated 01/10/2013 10:12 BST

Being asked to write about how 2005 was a good year for music and why it was better than 1995 filled me with some trepidation, how could you even compare the two, seeing that 1995 was the year that was covered in Britpop and its crowning glory was the unforgettable top of the chart rivalry between Blur and Oasis.

It's tough but don't discount 2005 as a lame duck in the history of music even if the biggest selling record of that year was James Blunt's You're Beautiful as there were many high points to celebrate (depending on your opinion) to go along with the inevitable lows of novelty hits and charity records that record companies insist on furnishing us with throughout the course of any year.

The heralding of new bands and the emergence of new scenes was a defining point when looking back to 2005 where we were introduced to a collection of a new wave of acts that have managed to stay the distance and are more prolific than ever. We were introduced to the Arctic Monkeys, whose debut album Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not became the fastest selling debut album in British music history - no mean feat. And the Kaiser Chiefs were another Great British invention, storming the charts with their debut album Employment which included the chant-along anthem of I Predict A Riot. Bloc Party, Editors and The Rakes were other notably successful bands with angular guitar stylings who rocked countless festivals and concert venues up and down the country and led to a revivalist movement in British rock music coined 'Math rock' or 'Art Rock'.

Many bands saw their efforts being tagged a return to form in 2005 by critics and you'll have to agree that acts that had been around a while produced some of their best work in this year. Take, for example, Oasis with the album Don't Believe the Truth which spawned two great singles in Lyla and The Importance of Being Idle.

Another Manchester band, Doves, returned with their third studio album entitled Some Cities and it went straight to number one in the album chart. Super Furry Animals, who I rate as being the best band in the UK, released their seventh album Love Kraft and it was bloody marvellous. Add the Damon Albarn-fronted Gorillaz, who came back with their second album Demon Days, and you can see that 2005 was no slouch when it came to memorable popular music.

If you were a fan of Madonna then her come back in 2005 would have got you excited with the release of her album Confessions on a Dancefloor and number one hit Hung Up but I'm not and I didn't. While we are on the subject of high octane tit-rushing pop music special mention has to go the Sugababes who unleashed the raucous electropop hit Push the Button which grabbed hold of you if you went anywhere near it.

And if you need further convincing that 2005 was a good year for music then look no further than the return of the wonderful Kate Bush who, after 12 years between releases, came back with the album Aerial... And if that doesn't make 2005 a good year for music then I don't know what will.

So while 2005 might not have had the orchestrated drama for the top spot of the charts, the memorable sub genre of indie music swathed in the Union Jack and Coolio's Gangsta's Paradise, this year certainly held its own in terms of well rounded, well meaning popular music. I like to think that when you compare 2005 to 1995, the former has the edge because you got to see and hear acts who had honed their sound, knew what they were doing and matured to produce some of their best work to date.

On a personal note, 2005 was a year that I'll always remember as it was a great year for Goldie Lookin' Chain as we got to experience the higher echelons of the music industry, touring around the world and rubbing shoulders with the likes of Elton John, Paul McCartney and U2 at award ceremonies. It's now our 10th anniversary year of doing live shows and to celebrate we're going back on the road in October and releasing a new album in September. You have been warned.

For more information about Goldie Lookin' Chain's new music and tour dates, click here.

Meanwhile, Maggot will be arguing the case for British music in 2005 on Channel 4's That Music Show which is hosted by Nick Grimshaw and is on Friday 2 August at 10pm.