Monday, 6 April 2015

My Top Ten Joan of Arc Songs

Who wouldn't burn themselves at the stake for Saint Joan? Here's ten artists paying fiery tribute...

Special mention to Joan Of Arc (the artist), perhaps most infamously known for A Tell-Tale Penis...

10. Clem Snide - Joan Jett of Arc

Linking perfectly to last week's post, Eef Barzelay's ode to a different kind of burning steak, with additional lyrical nods to Hall & Oates and John Mellencamp. More power to the puns!

9. Lene Lovich - Joan

Lene's Joan spends a little too much time listening to the voices in her head... but imagination is essential to creative art.

8. Grant Nicholas - Joan of Arc

Feeder's Grant Nicholas released his debut solo album last year and this is one of the stand out tracks. It has that same epic Feedery guitar sound, but a lot more beard.

7. Low - Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc will never save you now, claim everybody's favourite musical Mormons. But then, Joan of Arc never promised much...

6. Prefab Sprout - Green Isaac

I have to admit, Paddy, I've no idea what Green Isaac is all about... but I always love the way you spin those words together, like a little Shakespearian spider.
Oh, but to shine like Joan of Arc, you must be prepared to burn...
5. The Arcade Fire - Joan of Arc

Th'Arcade Fire take aim at their more zealous fans... like, chill out, guys, we're only a band... m'kay?
First they love you
Then they kill you
Then they love you again
And then they love you
Then they kill you
Then they love you again
Love love love you

Kill kill kill you...
4. Justin Currie - What Is Love For?

Another typically cynical and gloriously maudlin offering from Mr. C: a perfect ode to heartbroken bitterness.
What is love for?
Who does it help?
A one eyed king who leads everything straight into hell?

And what is love for?
What does it change?

Did Joan of Arc drag anyone back from history's flames?

And what does love do?
Does it favour a fortunate few?
Does it step on the hearts it can't use?
What does it do?
3. Leonard Cohen - Joan of Arc

Leonard's Joan gives herself to the flames both physically and metaphorically. An amazing, heartbreaking lyric.

2. Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark - Joan of Arc / Maid of Orleans

OMD score extra points for releasing two consecutive hit singles focused on the same historical character... has that ever been done at any other time in the annals of pop? Unfortunately, it's not quite enough to win them the top slot, not when they're up against this little belter...

1. The Smiths - Bigmouth Strikes Again

Well, it had to be, didn't it? "How could anybody possibly know how I feel?" Morrissey once famously asked, and yet could any other artist really know what it's like to be burned at the stake quite the way he has throughout his tortured career? (Insert winking smiley face.) Of course, Saint Morrissey's Joan was rather anachronistic, worried more about her melting Walkman and the smoke getting up her Roman nose than the fate of Orleans, but maybe that's why she had no right to take her place with the human race.

Which is your Maid of Orleans?


  1. "As the flames rose to her Roman nose and her Walkman started to melt"... possibly the finest line in 80's pop.

  2. Funny - I've never wondered what Green Isaac was about - I confess, I haven't got a bloody clue.

    OMD for me - I probably still have the 7" single of Joan of Arc.

    1. I obviously spend too much time thinking about such things.

      And... really? You never cease to etc....


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