1. Viva la Vida - Coldplay This was a massive commercial hit, but who cares? I love its sad yet uplifting momentum. When you do what I do every day, throwing 500 things against the wall and hoping one sticks, canned hope in the form of a very catchy tune goes a long way. 2. Time to Pretend - MGMT I love the unapologetically cheesy but effective synthesiser riff on this song. It feels morally and aesthetically wrong to enjoy it. But I do. My 12-year son turned me on to this band. 3. Glitter Freeze - Gorillaz After I saw the Gorillaz in concert in December, I became totally obsessed with their addictive album, Plastic Beach. It's a near-faultless mash-up of blues-rock-pop-digital-world music influences. The sophistication and catholicity of the Gorillaz's references doesn't exist anywhere else. 4. Shadow of the Day - Linkin Park I love to listen to music that makes me cry. It's the reason I could listen to this anthem 100 times in a row. I'm absolutely crazy about Linkin Park because of the sheer power of their melodies and execution which toes the line between too catchy and hard rock. 5. Beethoven's Symphony No 3, Eroica I grew up immersed in classical music. No pop music can beat the pay-off of a symphonic climax. In that regard, this symphony is a paragon of psycho-aural redemption. If I had more time, I would spend my life attending Beethoven and Chopin concerts.