Better late than are the songs that made our year! And then some...

Loud & Clear's Top 20 Songs of 2000:

The search for "L&C Song Of The Year" is finally over. Some of us had serious trouble coming up with a list of ten great songs, not because there weren't too many released, quite the opposite instead! Anyway, now at last, after several requests, notes and threats sent to the L&C staff, we have the results of the L'nC Jury...these are not as complete as I hoped them to be, because everyone didn't have the chance to hear all of the songs, but they give you an idea what has been getting some serious spinning among us.

1. Bon Jovi: It's My Life (Mercury)
The biggest melodic rock track of the year commercially. And deservedly so.
2. The Vu: Key To The City (Frontiers/Now & Then)
AOR perfection, and two individual no. 1 positions.
3. Dreamhunter: Kingdom Come (Z Records)
4. Millenium: Chasing Time (Frontiers/Now & Then)
5. Millenium: Hourglass (Frontiers/Now & Then)
6. Alfonzetti: Let Me In (MTM)
7. Dreamhunter: My Days Are Counted (Z Records)
All above are all-around favourites.
8. Andy Timmons - All Is Forgiven (Ulftone)
Ayhan's number one song that the rest of us haven't heard...should be good though!
9. Joe Lynn Turner - Angel (MTM)
Another fave of Ayhan, but liked by others too.
10. Kharma - Free Yourself (MTM)
Yet another all-around favourite.

Personal Top 10 Songs of 2000:

1. The Vu: Key To The City (Frontiers/Now & Then)
Pure bliss, perfection. Great athmosphere, excellent production, faultless performances, an uplifting, bombastic chorus, huge harmonies...what more can you ask for?
2. Bon Jovi: It's My Life (Mecury)
It is sad that this is the only song on my list that "a common man" would be familiar with. Still, this song revitalized the career of Bon Jovi. Catchy beyond belief, and a successful attempt to add some contemporary elements (read: Max Martin) into the classic Jovi sound.
3. Dreamhunter: Kingdom Come (Z Records)
Simply a breathtaking piece of powerful, yet highly melodic hard rock.
4. Nelson: The Hunger (Kivel)
Their "Life" album was a welcome return to the melodic style that made them famous, and this track is a perfect example of their newly found geniousness.
5. Millenium: Chasing Time (Frontiers/Now & Then)
A great showcase for the new and brilliant vocalist Jorn Lande. Extremely melodic hard rockin'.
6. Hugo: This Love Song (Frontiers/Now & Then)
A midtempo track that defines the term "AOR". Back in the "good ol' days", this song would have made Hugo a star.
7. 101 South: Your Razor Is Sharp (MTM)
Roger Scott Craig has a way of writing those dramatic melodies...
8. Alyson Avenue: One Desperate Heart (AOR Heaven)
Back in the "good ol' days", Alyson Avenue would have had a budget of million dollars and this song would've been one of their many chart-topping singles. A terrific AOR track.
9. The Sign: Aryon (Frontiers/Now & Then)
Mark Mangold is another "dramatic writer" who has the magic touch...
10. Storyteller: Hello Heaven (MTM)
Okay, I won't go on about the "good ol' days" anymore...but can I just say that this is the band's US Top 10 hit that never was?

1. The VU: Keys To The City (Frontiers/Now & Then)
This is THE melodic rock song. If I were to lecture about our music in a University I would use this song as example.
2. Dreamhunter: Kingdom Come (Z Records)
This song almost made it. If The VU is 100% this one is 99.99.
3. Kharma: Free Yourself (MTM)
Well, I was in big trouble with this one. I could have chosen "Wonderland" too because they were my two favorites from the album. I didn't want to have two songs from the same band in the top 10, so I decided to use only one of them.
4. T'Bell: Postman (AOR Heaven)
The funniest song of the year. I could have chosen ANY of the songs from this album. As a song the opening three songs are also perfect, this one is a bit of curiosity so I have chosen this one.
5. The Sign: Forever Again (Frontiers/Now & Then)
I can't help but love Mark Mangold's songwriting patterns.
6. 101 South: Freeway Ride (MTM)
The perfect opening for an album. I wish there were more of this kind on that album.
7. Millennium: Hourglass (Frontiers/Now & Then)
This song is an opus in itself. The essence of the whole album put in one song. Brilliant!
8. Alfonzetti: Let Me In (MTM)
Both the music and the lyrics got me here. The refrain's hooks just got stuck in my ears.
9. Jim Peterik: Vehicle (World Stage International)
I love brass sections used in rock songs. This song is arranged perfectly.
10. Two Fires: A Man's Gotta Do (Frontiers/Now & Then)
Clearly the best refrain of the whole album. Gets ya in the heart.

1. ANDY TIMMONS - All Is Forgiven (Ulftone)
This one is the highlight of Andy's "The Spoken & The Unspoken" album. Melodic Rock at it's finest. This track would be huge if a vocal part was included.
2. JOE LYNN TURNER - Angel (MTM Music)
His best album so far. And his most AOR-like song for years. Just brilliant...
3. BON JOVI - It's My Life (Mercury/Universal)
Bon Jovi knows how to sell records :) Just make a video shot of the only highlight on the new record. And sell millions. Anyway this really track rocks.
4. FIREHOUSE - Unbelievable (Pony Canyon)
Back to their early days. Thanks god, true rock is back!!!
5. DANGER DANGER - She's Gone (MTM)
Awesome vocals, great ballad.
6. KIP WINGER - Resurrection (Frontiers/Now & Then)
Like his first solo album, this one is totally amazing. This track includes the mighty Reb Beach on guitars.
7. MELODICA - Never Let You Go (Frontiers/Now & Then)
This track reminds me the first Danger Danger album. I love the way Ted Poley sings. Who says Paul is much better than Ted?
8. BRIAN MCDONALD - Words Come So Easy (MTM)
High tech Leppard-ish AOR. The choruses will blow you up.
9. ENUFF ZNUFF - There Goes My Heart (Z Records)
Very Beatles like track. This track was on the top list of Tower Records.
10. BABYLON AD - American Pie (Apocalypse Records)
Very grungy album, not in the vein of their early stuff. But this cover track is great. Madonna, who ;-)

Note from Vesa

I can't put any songs in special order because I play music pretty much depending on what kind of mood I'm in. I just cannot come up with the songs of the year. There are some older songs that really do the trick for me and also some new ones, but putting the new ones in order is just too difficult for me. You should know that I really had hard time to come up with the Top 10 albums. In 2000 there were more good albums released than the last few years, and joining L'n'C team has brought even more great artists to my attention than before. Thanks Kimmo! ['re welcome...]

I still stick to my favorite bands like D2, Firehouse and so on, but bands like Alfonzetti and Teer give me hope that this music will go on for a long time. I only hope that in 2001 there will be some really good albums released, so we all can find something great to listen and talk about. Hopefully I'll have a list of great songs at the end of the year 2001. [Ed's note: we did get a list of "approved" songs out of Vesa, results of which you can see calculated into the official L&C chart.]

Special charts of 2000:


I couldn't help but create a new category, the "Ballad of the Year" as I felt I had so many songs I couldn't fit in my top 10. To make it a bit more fair I only made a top 5 of them.

Bandi's Ballad Of The Year:

1. Dreamhunter: My Days Are Counted (Z Records)
I felt I need to excuse myself by putting this song to No. 1 because "Kingdom Come" lost only in the finish. But the band made it easy for me, as this ballad is the best of this kind since Bon Jovi's Wanted Dead Or Alive. Last year Steelhouse Lane's Son Of A Loaded Gun got close to this height.
2. 101 South: She Walks On Water (MTM)
A pure gem. Blows any of the Harlan Cage ballads. Probably the best song Roger Scott Craig has ever written.
3. John Taglieri: Can't You See (A2)
I'm glad to announce that a new star is being born. Though the Spaghetti Man's album didn't make it to my top 10, this ballad was among the highlights of the year for me. As some of you might know, the Tagster is a good friend/fellow lister of mine, so we intend to keep an eye on his work and he did not disappoint. He is the promise of the year (just to stick to those titles a bit more) for me. Right on, Spaghetti!
4. Hugo: Anyone In Love (Frontiers/Now & Then)
Though the album didn't qualify (it got flat after a while for me), this song definitely deserves a mention. Hugo is a great musician that never disappoints and delivers the quality we expect from him.
5. Jim Peterik: Diamonds For Stones (World Stage International)
I love female vocals and this duet with Catchy Richardson is simply awesome, bordering heartfelt soul music.


Inspired by Bandi's effort, I came up with a list of songs that really don't fit under the title of "melodic rock". Yes, it's...

Kimmo's Guilty Pleasures - The Pop Tracks Of The Year:

1. Britney Spears: Stronger (Jive)
Just like her last year's "Crazy", this song has a pounding rock beat and a suitably big chorus. The video reminds me of Lita Ford's "Kiss Me Deadly".
2. Place-2-Go: Higher And Higher (Sprinkler)
former hard rocker Patrik Linman aims for the hearts of the Savage Garden/BSB/etc fans. With this very catchy track he might actually make it.
3. Backstreet Boys: Show Me The Meaning Of Being Lonely (Jive)
As much as I hate the idea of a "boyband", these guys (or their writers) can come up with a good song now and then. This one is a moody, dark ballad with excellent vocal arrangements.
4. Leann Rimes: Can't Fight The Moonlight (Curb)
Country Queen Rimes' venture into the pop market. This Diane Warren-penned song is featured in the movie "Coyote Ugly".
5. Laura Pausini: Tra Te E Il Mare (EastWest)
Actually, Pausini is not so far from AOR...just wait for her first english album later this year.