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Editors' Roundtable: RS Staffers Debate the Decade's Best Music

December 11, 2009 12:00 AM ET

Determining the best albums, songs and artists of the decade was no easy task, and as our roundtable discussion about the 2000s' best music demonstrates, there's quite a diversity of opinions in the Rolling Stone reviews department. Watch as managing editor Will Dana talks with critics David Fricke, Rob Sheffield and Jody Rosen about how music changed over the past 10 years and their personal picks for the greatest music of the decade.

"Pop divas are the rock stars of the 'naughts," says Rosen, arguing that "in terms of radical sounds, the Top 40 has been dominated by hip-hop production." "I think the first important rock record that had an important pop influence was Kid A by Radiohead," Fricke says, adding he was surprised it was voted Number One on our albums list.

Sheffield's favorite album belonged to the Hold Steady, and he recalls seeing the band (accidentally) in Brooklyn several years ago. Fricke explains why Green Day's American Idiot topped both his albums and songs lists, and Rosen chats about his two Number Ones: Brad Paisley and Missy Elliott. Plus, don't miss Sheffield making his case for Britney Spears' "Toxic" as the era's definitive track.

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Song Stories

“Hungry Like the Wolf”

Duran Duran | 1982

This indulgent New Romantic group generated their first U.S. hit with the help of what was at the time new technology. "Simon [Le Bon] and I, I think, had been out the night before and had this terrible hangover," said keyboardist Nick Rhodes. "For some reason we were feeling guilty about it and decided to go and do some work." Rhodes started playing with his Jupiter-8 synth, and then "Simon had an idea for a lyric, and by lunchtime when everyone else turned up, we pretty much had the song." The Simmons drumbeat was equally important to the sound of "Hungry Like the Wolf," as Duran Duran drummer Roger Taylor stated it "kind of defined the drum sound for the Eighties."

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