Written by: Max Martin, Dr. L**e, Bonnie McKee and Mathieu Jomphe
Produced by: Max Martin, Billboard and Dr. L**e
Album: Femme Fatale
UK release: January 2011
UK chart peak: 6
Pop was well and truly shifting HARD towards the electro ~vibe at the turn of the decade, and when Britney Spears joined in all guns blazing with the Femme Fatale era, it felt so. Fucking. Exciting.
On Hold It Against Me, she not only shifted towards electropop; she also became one of the first God-tier popstars to jump on dubstep. Of course it its use in middle-8s was tired and overused by, like, 2012; but it felt fresh and innovative here. And actually, it felt – as all good Britney singles do – like it was both on-trend and ahead of the curve at the same time; and I’m choosing to attribute any and all credit for that to everyone involved except That Man.
There are so many fun Britneyisms in this, too: the way she says “hazayyy”, the fight she has with HERSELF in the video, the delivery of “YOU! FEEL! LIKE! PAAARADISE!”, the editing of “na-na-na-NAAOW”, the double entendres… it’s among Brit’s more under-rated singles, I admit, but come on now – it is absolutely one of her best.