This is "The Big 10 - The Essential Tracks", in which we take a closer look at particular artist's or band's back catalogue, and choose the 10 finest moments. These are our subjective choices, so if you want to ask how on earth we could leave off such and such song from the list, you can... and the answer is... because we could.

  "Don't Be Afraid To Lose What Was Never Meant To Be". The Timotei Twins' story of success? A&R executive John Kalodner (that guy again). Melodies, harmonies. The lame... (hey! I enjoy the music - not the musicians) ehem... fair enough... "glamourous" image including flowing long blond hair and matching outfits and of course heavy MTV rotation of their first single, "Love and Affection" (#1 Billboard hit). Believe it or not. Back in the day (we felt we could do the impossible) in 1990 the 'M' in MTV actually meant/stood for Music and not Mental. Did it help that dad was former Rock N Roll legend: Rick 'Ricky' Nelson? For a year or so, you could find Gunnar and Matthew on all the covers on every single magazine that appealed to the youth.

"I Know The Emptiness You Feel Inside". The debut album sold double platinum and everything came up N-E-L-S-O-N. Fun fact. Their drummer Bobby Rock (ex-Vinnie Vincent Invasion) sported one of the biggest and most outrageous hairdo of the era. That darn 'thing' ate breakfast at McDonald's every single morning. Then came... 'the Grunge'. Media turned their backs on the band and Geffen turned down every single attempt to follow-up. Probably while using clever words such as: this doesn't sound like grunge. You need to play grunge. We need more grunge, and could you dress-up as lumberjacks? They even wrote material together with song-smith Jack Ponti and Chip/Donnie from Enuff Z'Nuff. Many of the songs would eventually end up on the rejected 1996 concept album: Imaginator.

"You Know The Time Has Come For You To Face The Truth". Meanwhile, fans of the "After The Rain" (1990) had to sit back and wait five long years for the smooth sounding "Because They Can". It was too little, too late, and the acoustic style didn't always match the sound of the debut or 1995 for that matter. The majority of fans got upset and the record company didn't exactly push. Some really good songs on the album though. In 2010, Nelson signed a record deal with Frontiers Records and they've released four albums with the twins. And before you start complaining. No. They were never metal. They never set out or pretend to be Metal. It's Power-Pop and melodic melodies. Inspired by everything from country to melodic hard rock. To quote the song Rockstar from Peace Out. "I'm gonna live like I'm a rockstar and maybe you should do the same". It's the Big Ten - Nelson-style. \m/

10. Five O'Clock Plane
9. Everywhere I Go
8. Rockstar
7. Bits and Pieces
6. You're All I Need Tonight

5. Kiss Me When I Cry
To be perfectly honest. The lyric is kind of out there and the message doesn't always ring true or make sense? The same goes for the entire concept album Imaginator - the epic story of Leonard The Unlikely. A great communicator and warrior of the light, prophesied messiah of the human race. Ehem. Whatever. This song is however co-written by Jack Ponti superb and steeped in a similar mode to Baton Rouge and Alice Cooper. 'A taste of pretty poison to remember you by'.

4. Won't Walk Away
"Though I try, I can't decide. I won't walk away, walk away from you. Whoa, from you". A 'capella makes the intro interesting for everything that it embodies. Great harmonies? Dug in at the start of the song [where else, dumbo?], it shows us the greatness of simplicity and the simple fact that it's not always easy to simply just do it. Do what? Come up with a catchy hook of course. Unlike the album itself [Because They Can], the song is an AOR stomper, transitioning from great to better. Weird though. It's co-written by Jack Ponti. However... it doesn't sound anything like Ponti?

3. After The Rain
Another broken heart/massive fart, story and hit single from their debut [peaked at #6 Billboard]. But there's something larger at play. If you're actually listening to the song and feeling it, it's speaking directly to you. The lack of communication, confidence, clarity. It's the struggle of billions of teenagers all over the world. It really doesn't matter if you're from China, Egypt, The States or Scandinavia. We've all been there. "Only After The Rain You Live Again". I do recall that some people never live again though.

2. The Great Escape
"Another Time, Another place, We won't be prisoners of fate. Somehow, we'll find a way to get out of here". The Great Escape. Indeed. Not only is this one of Nelson bros' hidden gems from Because They Can, but it's also the American Dream song that actually won't annoy you. The classic small town boy or girl trying to get away from the wicked walls of the dead-end town as they're closing in and you can't breathe. Timeless soft rock!!!

1. (Can't Live Without Your) Love and Affection
"Here she comes, just like angel. Seems like forever that she's been on my mind. But nothing has changed, she's thinks I'm a waste of her time". Lyric-wise, the typical high-school crush. Music-wise, darn catchy. The legend goes the twins forced down the door at Geffen records after a year of meeting with Kalodner without being signed, Gunnar and Matthew rushed in all guns blazing to play an acoustic version of the song and received a record deal. Yeah. They probably didn't force or blaze anything considering the size of the two (half nelson? wrestling?). It's however a good story and the smashing US #1 Hit

This list by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom

The list as a YouTube playlist

Individual lists:

Kimmo Toivonen:

10. When You're Gone
9. Keep One Heart
8. Only Time Will Tell
7. After The Rain
6. Invincible
5. The Hunger
4. You're All I Need Tonight
3. How Can I Miss You?
2. Love And Affection
1. Won't Walk Away

(c) 2018 RockUnited.Com


10.Bits and Pieces
9. Invincible
8. The Hunger
7. Kiss Me When I Cry
6. How Can I Miss You?
5. The Great Escape
4. After The Rain
3. You're All I Need Tonight
2. Won't Walk Away
1. Love And Affection

- A pretty diverse selection of songs from several albums!