The 98 Best Songs of 1998: Pop's Weirdest Year

In 1998, boundaries blew open and new genres were invented each week. We look back at the best, brightest and weirdest from a pivotal year in pop

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30. Massive Attack, "Angel"

The Bristol crew that invented trip-hop – Daddy 3, Mushroom and 3-D – got even heavier on Mezzanine. While everybody else was still racing to catch up with what Massive Attack were doing in 1994 on Protection, these guys swerved into the unknown – anyone who could turn the Cocteau Twins' Elizabeth Fraser into a soul singer (as in "Teardrop") was definitely on some new shit. "Angel" remains their most enormous track ever, a six-minute descent into the abyss, with reggae stalwart Horace Andy pleading for mercy over ominous bass, an "Apache" beat that rumbles like John Bonham getting crushed under broken levees, cinematic strings and blasts of Hendrix-gone-Kingston guitar.

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