Sunday, 23 March 2014

My Top Ten Knife Songs

"You call that a knife? These are knives..."

(Special mention to Shonen Knife and The Young Knives.)

10. Brett Anderson - Knife Edge

 A devastating piano ballad that proves Brett really doesn't need guitars to inflict a deep, lasting wound.

9. Los Campesinos - We Throw Parties, You Throw Knives

If you ever considered playing Pass The Parcel with human body parts, Los Campesinos have the song for you.
It's your party but I'll die if I want to...
8. Bryan Adams - Cuts Like A Knife

Deal with it.

7. Radiohead - Knives Out

 I remember when Radiohead released this, they said it was their "Smiths song".
So knives out
Cook him up
Squash his head
Put him in the pot
Moz would be proud. (Except, he wouldn't, of course. He hates Radiohead.)

6. PJ Harvey - Pocket Knife

They should keep her away from all sharp objects. Don't even let her run with scissors. 
Flowers I can do without
I don't wanna be tied down
White material will stain
My pocket knife's gotta shiny blade
I'm not trying to cause a fuss
I just wanna make my own fuck-ups
I'm not trying to break your heart
I'm just trying not to fall apart...
5. Dingus Khan - Knifey Spoon

A spiky indie track I got into because Lamacq kept playing it on 6Music. The video is mental.
I couldn't find a knife so I had to use a spoon...
4. Dire Straits - Six Blade Knife

My shameless middle-aged sojourn into Dad-Rock continues. Dire Straits are another band who, like Steely Dan, I'd only listened to in Greatest Hits form until very recently. Now I can't get enough of them.

This, from their eponymous 1978 debut album is SEX + DEATH = ROCK 'N' ROLL. (Honest.)

3. Aztec Camera - Knife

Over 9 minutes in length - that's one long knife!
And the knife has got my number,
And the number that you keep,
And the knife has called division,
And it's drawn when I'm asleep.
2. The Long Blondes - A Knife For The Girls

Every time I play a Long Blondes track on this blog, it is customary for me to bemoan their untimely passing. One listen to this creepy little bedsit stalker anthem will prove why...

1. Louis Armstrong - Mack The Knife 

Like it could have been anything else.

Written by Kurt Weill and Bertolt Brech (the original German title is "Die Moritat von Mackie Messer"... which doesn't trip off the tongue quite as smoothly) and recorded by everybody from Frank to Bobby Darin to Sting and Robbie Williams... but Louis' version is the definitive one for me.

This one's for Sukie Tawdry...

Those were my knives... but which one is stuck in your back?


  1. Hi, good topic, one I had been thinking about doing. As you have rightly concluded, you can't go past Mack for this one.

    My other suggestion, Tiny Daggers by INXS.

    1. Is this a dagger I see before me? Good song from the Kick album, Deano... I'll keep it in mind for my Top Ten Dagger Songs... or perhaps something else.

  2. Can't think of a song with "knife" in the title but there is the classic Stanglers track "5 Minutes" for the lines: "...and in their eyes there was fear and hate / And when they spoke, they spoke with knives..."

  3. Knives Out must surely rank higher? Top 3 for me.

    Can I also make a tentative suggestion of The Knife by early-period Genesis. It's very, very Brian Pern...

    1. That Genesis track was considered... for a short time. And Knives Out, while fun, is kinda post-jumping the shark Radiohead for me.

  4. As you know Louis is my hero but I actually really like Robbie's version.

    1. I like Robbie's cheeky chappie act and was almost tempted to buy his swing album if only for the Rufus Wainwright duet. But he'll never be Louis. Or Frank.

  5. Just found killradio do you know (knife in your back) and we (hwmbo and I) rather like it so we are off on another safari! Appreciate the catalyst.

  6. In my gallivanting around, I've missed this...


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