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Reasons to Miss the ’00s

Chris Hondros, Hulton Archive

Last night, Franz Ferdinand sashayed into the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City and filmed a ‘Live on Letterman’ webcast. The Scottish lads were fantastic: a herky-jerky explosion of pure-pop and patterned shirts. Next month, Franz drop their fourth studio album, ‘Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action,’ and as the ‘Letterman’ footage attests, the new tunes — especially lead single ‘Right Action’ and the relatively restrained synth-wop stunner ‘Stand on the Horizon’ — are nearly on par with the old stuff. Still, nothing beats ‘Take Me Out,’ from the band’s 2004 self-titled debut. Perhaps the decade’s finest indie jam, it’s reason to forget all this ‘90s nostalgia and start looking forward (but you know, still back) and consider the following Reasons to Miss the ’00s.

iPods. White earbuds were the decade’s defining fashion accessory, and in the pre-streaming days, it was amazing to leave the house with your entire pirated record collection in tow.

Mario Tama, Getty Image

Righteous political anger. In 2004, if you played a guitar and didn’t write an anti-Bush screed, there’s a 99 percent chance your name was Toby Keith.

Pool, Getty Images

CBGB was a functioning rock club, not a fancy-pants retailer or a soon-to-be-released (and chided) feature film.

Teresa Lee, Getty Images

All of the Ramones were still alive, at least for a little while. Joey died in 2001, followed by Dee Dee in 2002 and Johnny in 2004. That leaves only drummer Tommy from the original foursome. (At least he’s the only one who’ll have to suffer through the CB’s movie.)

Spencer Platt, Hulton Archive

A Clash reunion was still possible — at least until 2002, when the world lost another punk icon, Joe Strummer.

Bright Eyes was a New Dylan worth believing in. Post-9/11, we were living in a powder keg and giving off sparks, but Conor Oberst chilled us out with his plaintive strumming.

Scott Gries, Getty Images

Disco-punk got rock dudes dancing, and there was plenty of room in the Rapture’s ‘House of Jealous Lovers’ for every hipster to bust a clumsy move.

Mark Metcalfe, Getty Image

(Nowadays, dance music is everywhere, but it’s taken the form of indistinguishable radio pap, and it goes by the annoying acronym EDM. Thanks, David Guetta!)

Ethan Miller, Getty Images

“Real” rock ‘n’ roll — as in skinny white guys with guitars and leather jackets — was back, and it was never, ever, ever going to leave us again.

Ethan Miller, Getty Images

Outkast were still making records, and that meant the possibility of a second ‘Hey Ya!’

Frank Micelotta, Getty Images

R.E.M., too, were a going concern, and 2008′s ‘Accelerate’ was pretty decent. If you believe they put on man on the moon, you could fool yourself into thinking they had another classic in ‘em.

Kevin Winter, Getty Images

There were scapegoats. Now, ‘American Idol‘ is irrelevant, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga are kind of awesome and Britney Spears is just sorta sad. Indie kids have nowhere to focus their rage, provided they still have any.

Frazer Harrison, Getty Images

Next: 10 Best '00s Indie Rock Albums

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