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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84. Maxwell, "Everwanting: To Want You to Want"

Only a sex mystic like Maxwell could do a seven-minute slo-mo funk jam based on the premise that Nine Inch Nails' "Closer" and Soul II Soul's "Back To Life" were secretly the same song. (Maxwell did an acoustic "Closer" on his MTV Unplugged special – "I wanna love you like an animal" – so don't put anything past him.) His definitive second album Embrya is full of inviting titles like "Submerge: Til We Become the Sun," "Drowndeep: Hula" and "Gestation: Mythos." In "Everwanting: To Want You to Want," he builds an arty trance Marvin Gaye could have called his own. Maxwell has kept this spirit alive ever since – as in his great 2016 single "1990x."

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