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A SUPERSTAR IS BORN!!

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Honestly -and I cannot stress this enough: iejfijerghgfijfitrhgregaeijfruhgiajopivjuwajsodjsdsirthjowegjwopgijtr

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100 songs of the decade: Starships – Nicki Minaj

‘I ain’t paying my rent this month. I owe that’

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Written by: Onika Maraj, Nadir Khayat, Carl Falk, Rami Yacoub, Wayne Hector and Bilal Hajji
Produced by: RedOne, Rami Yacoub and Carl Falk
Album: Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded
UK release: February 2012
UK chart peak: 2

The thing about Starships is… it’s batshit crazy. After moving towards pop with the likes of Super Bass and Fly at the turn of the decade, Nicki Minaj went Full Poppers O’Clock with this and its follow-up Pound The Alarm; both of which are the musical equivalent of being slammed round the face with a brick.

Minaj pulls off the high-high-high-octane banger with her usual charisma, and RedOne’s fingerprints are all over the chaotic production. Starting with a gentle electric guitar strum and ending with full football-stadium-like chants, it’s completely wild – and honestly it’s best to just go along with it and have the time of your life than stop and think about what a RACKET it is.

Ultimately it’s cut from the same cloth as the LMFAO horrifibangers of the time, but like… better?

  • I’ll be writing about my favourite 100 pop songs of the decade; one a day for the last 100 days of 2019. They’re in no particular order, except the Top 10 – which will (obviously) come in late December.
  • See the full list so far here.
  • You can follow the rolling, daily-updated playlist below, or here.

Continue Reading

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100 songs of the decade: Anywhere – Rita Ora

‘You’re painting me a dream that I wanna belong in’

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Written by: Rita Ora, Nolan Lambroza, Ali Tamposi, Alessandro Lindblad, Nicholas Gale, Andrew Wotman and Brian Lee
Produced by: Alesso, Watt and Sir Nolan
Album: Phoenix
UK release: October 2017
UK chart peak: 2

After YEARS of legal difficulties kept her in the musical wilderness, Rita Ora made a solid return with Your Song; but it was Anywhere that really (and I mean REALLY) put her back at the very front of British pop.

Songs that swap a proper chorus for a cop-out ~breakdown have become THE DEVIL in recent years, but there are exceptions, and Anywhere is one of them. Seven credited writers and the chorus is just glitchy vocal effects and the occasional “Oh!”? You bet! Anywhere serves wistful lyrics in the verses and pre-chorus, then gives you the exact payoff you need: a big, balls-to-the-wall slab of surreal perfection.

I made Touch by Little Mix my No1 song of 2017 in the year-end rankings I did at the time (with thanks to the 0 people on whom that list made a lasting impression), and let’s not lie – that tune is fucking enormous – but, given a chance to re-do, I think I’d nudge this almighty, career-redefining gem up to No1 instead.

The Top 10 of this 100 Songs of the Decade project will be the only part ranked into an actual order; but if I were to do it to the whole 100, Anywhere would be very comfortably in the Top 20. What. A. Song.

  • I’ll be writing about my favourite 100 pop songs of the decade; one a day for the last 100 days of 2019. They’re in no particular order, except the Top 10 – which will (obviously) come in late December.
  • See the full list so far here.
  • You can follow the rolling, daily-updated playlist below, or here.

Continue Reading

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100 songs of the decade: Hold It Against Me – Britney Spears

‘You feel like paradise, and I need a vacation tonight’

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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.

  • I’ll be writing about my favourite 100 pop songs of the decade; one a day for the last 100 days of 2019. They’re in no particular order, except the Top 10 – which will (obviously) come in late December.
  • See the full list so far here.
  • You can follow the rolling, daily-updated playlist below, or here.

Continue Reading

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