It’s harder than ever to pay attention these days, with our various gadgets and devices blasting staggering amounts of information into our minds on a relentless schedule that never sleeps. No matter how cool now is, there’s an ever-increasing demand that we keep our eye on the next thing coming down the line.
So in the spirit of brevity, we’re keeping the short attention-span generation on a short leash with a list of the 100 Most Kickass Songs Under 2 Minutes Long! We could make you a Spotify mix of the list, but then you’d miss out on the badass music videos that accompany each of the top ten tracks. And you haven’t lived until you’ve read along with the misheard-lyrics video to Pearl Jam’s spitfire jam “Lukin”.
The majority of the list of 100 is in no particular order, though the top 10 have been selected for their particular awesomeness. And truly, there are some incredible gems on this list that squeak in under the two-minute mark. From The Beatles to Radiohead, Daft Punk to Tom Waits, you’re more than likely to find some old favorites among the ranks. Set your timer and dig in below!
The White Stripes – Fell in Love With a Girl
The song that put the White Stripes on the map is simple, quick and catchy enough to embed itself in your head like a tick, burrowing deeper with each listen. A decade after its release, we still can’t get enough.
Jay Z – Beach is Better
It’s telling that the best song by far on Jay Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail album is under a minute long, but “Beach Is Better” is absolute fire in the most Jay Z way possible. In 56 seconds Beyonce’s husband dismantles all competition and wipes the dirt – or rather burning through $100k in a single day – off his shoulder with jaw-dropping flare.
The Beatles – I’m Happy Just To Dance With You
Written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney and recorded by The Beatles for the film soundtrack to A Hard Day’s Night, the song was penned specifically for George Harrison to sing at a time when he lacked the confidence to compose his own material.
Soundgarden – Kickstand
One of Soundgarden’s punkiest, fastest numbers came off their 1994 masterpiece Superunknown.
The Clash – White Riot
Fun, furious, and iconic – which sums up The Clash pretty perfectly. The song is about class economics and race, which Joe Strummer was trying to appeal to white youths to find a worthy cause to riot. “Are you taking over / Or are you taking orders? / Are you going backwards / Or are you going forwards?”
The Rolling Stones – Not Fade Away
The A-side to The Rolling Stones’ first single was a cover of Buddy Holly’s classic, which became a massive hit in the UK and the US upon release. Get a kick out of how ridiculously animated Keith Richards is in this clip, as well as the absolutely classic audience shots of girls losing their minds with excitement.
Pearl Jam – Lukin
Pearl Jam’s 100-mile-a-minute ode to frontman Eddie Vedder’s escape to his happy place in the midst of a break-in crisis, which happens to be at the home of his friend Matt Lukin (of The Melvins/Mudhoney). We’ve included the “wrong lyrics” version for distracting fun, because it’s freakin’ hilarious. There’s also a slow version that the band performs live on occasion, a fantastic reworking of the song.
Daft Punk – Nightvision
Ethereal, gentle and yet somehow still powerful as a wrecking ball. If Daft Punk is able to do wrong, we have yet to see any examples of it.
Queens of The Stone Age – Six Shooter
Welcome to the spaz-blast screaming freakout of Queens of The Stone Age’s “Six Shooter,” a centerpoint track on their masterpiece album Songs For The Deaf.
Janis Joplin – Mercedes Benz
The Queen of Psychedelic Soul, Joplin was one of a kind and a little too fond of the Southern Comfort & drugs for her own good. “Mercedes Benz” was among Joplin’s two final recordings, the other track being a birthday gift for John Lennon.