61. Girls Aloud – Biology
Six months before Biology was released, the Crazy Frog was at number one in the UK charts after becoming an overnight ringtone sensation/irritation. This is only worthy of mention because of the precedent it set: if a guileless ringtone – a piece of music designed to last no more than a few bars – can be a hit, what would happen when a well-oiled pop machine took on the form? Girls Aloud’s finest moment, that’s what. Sure, Biology’s three utterly disparate sections could all be songs in their own right, but the decision to cram them together into some attention-deficit shuffle-mode playlist is the genius here. Every thirty seconds, another section is cut down in its prime, replaced by an even better hook. This tumbling, speedy feeling of Sunny D-esque sensory overload is allowed to build for two minutes before we get to the chorus, at which point the track is so high on multi-flavoured spangly pop sherbet that the only option is a broad grin to acknowledge the nonsense. Call it mash-up culture, ringtone pop or just plain nuts, what can’t be avoided here is that Biology is both brilliantly original and unconventional – something that, from the land’s biggest pop group, is deliciously rare.