On 11 February 2019 I set myself the challenge of reading 1001 Songs You Must Hear Before You Die by Robert Dimery (ed.) and following the book’s advice to the letter. I’ve previously read 1001 Films… and started 1001 Albums… but felt 1001 Songs… would be a sensible place to start for what I have in mind here.
My challenge is to read about one song per day and listen to it (YouTube and Spotify, I need you tonight!) before sharing my own thoughts. Some songs I will love, others I’ll hate, and I’m sure there will be those that leave me perplexed but listen to them I shall.
I’ll also try, and most likely fail, to pinpoint the best song from the 1001 on offer but I’m nothing if not foolhardy. Instead of one song, I’m predicting I’ll have about 100 favourites by the end and may have to resort to a Top 10 so far to maintain any semblance of sanity.
So long as I post every day (including Christmas) then this challenge should come to an end on Wednesday 8 November 2021. Staying with the Barney Stinson theme I am hoping that the whole experience will prove to be… legendary!
Phoenix – Consolation Prizes (2006)
” Consolation Prizes” is a song by French rock band Phoenix and is featured on their third studio album, It’s Never Been Like That . It was released 11 September 2006 as the second single from that album (see 2006 in music).
Welcome to 2006, dear reader. We are leaving Iceland behind today and making our way to mainland Europe where we stop off in Versailles in France. Formed in 1997 Phoenix are an indie pop band that dabble in some rock as well, when the mood takes them of course. When we join them in 2006 it is with the release of their third album – It’s Never Been Like That – and from there 1001 Songs have gone with the track, Consolation Prizes.
Consolation Prizes appears to concern the end of or, at the very least, the breaking down of a relationship. A big change has taken place one day in September and the narrator seems to be looking at the world with open eyes for the first time in a long time. It sounds like years have gone by, a void has emerged between him and his lover and they are heading for the door. The chorus speaks of “consolation prizes”, either the desire for the two of them not to end up clinging to such things or possibly they alone are hanging onto memories and good moments to assuage the pain they are now going through.
I was not familiar with Phoenix prior to this challenge but once again we have a song that seems to deal with heartbreak and does it very successfully. It’s Never Been Like That was well received upon release and the group achieved sales of nearly 100k in the US which is no mean feat. The band continue to this day and have now released six albums, the last being Ti Amo in 2017.
Favourite songs so far: