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!
Kaiser Chiefs – I Predict a Riot (2004)
” I Predict a Riot” is a song by English indie rock band Kaiser Chiefs, appearing on their debut album, Employment (2005). It was originally released as their second single on 1 November 2004 and was the band’s first release on the B-Unique label. It entered at number 22 on the UK Singles Chart.
We’re remaining in the UK today, dear reader, but leaving Scotland and making our way down to England and to Yorkshire. We find ourselves in the delightful city of Leeds, a place I once worked for four years and home to our latest guests – Kaiser Chiefs. They first formed in 2000 as Parva but later changed their name to Kaiser Chiefs. When we join the group in 2004 they are working on their debut album, Employment, but in the run up to that a new single has been released entitled, I Predict a Riot.
In I Predict a Riot, Kaiser Chiefs take our hands and guide us on a night out in Leeds. I have partaken of this myself many times in the past and have had some strange encounters too. The song describes crowds of people being intoxicated, a friend is beaten by police officers and the narrator is even involved in a tussle over access to the next taxi. A night out in Leeds here is portrayed as rather terrifying and not the most appealing of things for a tourist. I would still recommend it personally and can confidently say I managed to avoid riots during my visits.
I remember I Predict a Riot when it was first released and the song remains a classic track to this day. I hadn’t really delved into its meaning before this song challenge but was intrigued by the narrative about a night out in Leeds. It usually seems that songs are about places I have never been, so it was refreshing to come across a track focused on a city I know well. The track would hit the UK Top 10 with the group’s debut album proving popular. They would later top the UK charts with the song, Ruby, but since then they haven’t been as successful though do continue to perform.
Favourite songs so far: