[feature] New Year’s Count-Up: 2002 in five songs

Wilco and The Flaming Lips break through while The Books and Avril Lavigne debut. Rhyme intentional.

- Dec 24, 2012

As the new year draws closer, we’ve decided to take a look the music that’s gotten us to where we are today. So in an effort to broaden our musical horizons and our understanding of contemporary artists, we’re counting down 2012 by counting up from 1952, taking a look at a handful of songs from a different year every day until January 1st. You can find the full list here. Today we’re heading back to 2002!

Wilco - "I'm The Man Who Loves You"

Despite the fact that Wilco's perfect breakthrough album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot is named for one of the many mysterious number stations in which a robo voice says those words over and over forever (you can hear the voice at the end of "Poor Places"), it's an incredibly accessible and familiar feeling record. Melodic folk-rock is woven together with a precise touch of experimentalism, making for a release often considered to be one of the decade's best.

Justin Timberlake - "Cry Me A River"

Justin Timberlake - Cry Me A River (Official)

"Britney already cry a river for u Justin she loved u more than anything u knew her since 8 and why didn't u forgive her and look what she is know because of u justin u make her to be whore and she lost her ability in dancing and live performance and u took her young ness and made her to be so old and the one that is lip synching I fucking hate u Justin for what u did to Britney and if u and her were married u would be the best couple ever and lady gaga and Rihanna wouldn't be famous" - Shahzad Najafipour7 hours ago

The Flaming Lips - "Do You Realize"

"Do You Realize," the Official Rock Song of Oklahoma, was supposedly inspired by guitarist Steven Drozd's struggle to beat his addiction to heroin. It also opened the band band to a much wider audience with a handful of commercial placements, boosting their success to the next level.

 The Books - "Enjoy Your Worries You May Never Have Them Again"

The Books - Enjoy your worries you may never have them again

This song/sound collage hybrid kicks off The Books' debut album with a bold immediacy. The rest of the record offers much of the same brilliance: mostly acoustic instruments playing with frenetic rhythm lead us through sparse but attainable landscapes of borrowed sounds.

Avril Lavigne - "Sk8r Boi"

Avril Lavigne - Sk8er Boi

Once you take away the mild punk rock references, Avril Lavigne was (is?) just a pop star. But at the time she offered a kind of pseudo rebellion that landed perfectly with preteen girls, playing to their near universal feelings of being different/unpopular/alternative/weird, while actually being extremely accessible and conventional musically. But with Britney and Christina around, an Avril is just what the market needed.

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