Perhaps of all the weeks, our special slate of four guests last week made it the best week of writing so far. We had the closest poll, the biggest comeback, seen the most progress in the bracket pool, and whittled away the field so now only 4 remain. This week, it’s not about divisions any more. It’s about dominance in the arena of badness. It’s the Foul Four.
You can find those polls here. OPEN NOW
But first, join us as we bid farewell to the four songs that were so close, yet so far; trapped for an eternity within their divisional purgatory.
RM: Goodbye, Billy Ray Cyrus. In the song “Achy Breaky Heart” ole’ Billy says, “You can tell my arms go back to the farm” which is a lyric I have never really understood. Wouldn’t it make more sense to tell his legs to go back to the farm (like you walk there)? Wikipedia tells me Cyrus has released 12 albums and 44 singles since 1992. Without looking, could you name another of those 44 singles? Imagine if this was your dad. Poor Miley.
NSS: Farewell, “Nookie”. More than any other, your lyrics are sung by people who don’t know what they mean. Actually, only Fred Durst knows what they mean, because only Fred Durst emphasizes with the “did it for sex but didn’t get any (though everyone else did)” position, because only Fred Durst has ever been in that position. Thankfully the website genius.com illuminates it for the rest of us: “Here, Fred Durst expresses the pain that his brain feels as the flames burn on his brain.” (Note: this is an actual thing.) But the staggering part: that’s still better than the actual lyric. But now, our prince is gone, a nu-metal punk in a Titleist Golf hat.
RM: So long, Creed. You rode Scott Stapp’s groaning diarrhea vocals and odd lyrics about caring for an alien baby or whatever to the Tainted 8. The late 90s/early 00s were a musical hellscape as you can tell from that era’s heavy representation in this bracket. Creed was the crown jewel of the post-grunge era. What is that worth today? Not very much.
NSS: Rest in peace to the Lyte Funky Ones. Your gratuitous misuse of hip hop produced jokes your listeners were too tone-deaf to even get, even now 17 years later. Your eternal memory will be carried on through a vicious takedown from Eminem that doesn’t speak an ill word about you. There was a good man named Paul Revere. Billy Shakespeare wrote a whole bunch of sonnets. The great Larry Bird jersey 33. There’s definitely no tie-in here, just random shit. You’d take her if you had one wish but she’s been gone since that summer. Just like every other girl since ‘99.
NSS: Goodbye Obituaries. With four songs to go, this is your last go-round. Of everything I’ve done on this, the writing, the guests, interacting with all our fans, the comraderie on Twitter and in the comment section, there perhaps is nothing I will miss more than the last twist of the knife against the songs we’ve shepherded through from the moment we received the nomination up until your departures. They say anyone can write a pan, and really, the obituaries proved it. But I know we both loved it all the same.
- Thank You’s: Thank you to those who guest hosted, submitted nominees, playlists, Gerse for hosting the challenge, @blairdow for designing our Twitter logo, Sidespin for TKTKTK, and the staff at Deadspin for your tireless efforts.