Hey howdy hey, welcome to Radio Rants! Let’s crack open the Hot 100 and get a look at your top 10.…well, shit. I’ve already done six of these songs. Rihanna went last week, so I’m not dealing with her again this soon, so she’s off the list. I swore I wouldn’t review Firework until it got into the Top 5 (so probably next week). And Glee doesn’t count as real music. P!nk it is!
Let’s go over P!nk’s career to date. Her first major appearance was on Grammy winning collaborative remake of “Lady Marmalade” with Lil Kim, Mya, and Christina Aguilera (or as I refer to it, “How to make a supergroup without star power”). Then her M!ssundaztood album came out to critical and commercial acclaim, not to mention the hit single “Get This Party Started”. Since then, she’s followed a surprisingly stable trend of releasing an album, having a giant single or two, and then completely disappearing (see: “Stupid Girl”, “So What”). And now she’s coming out with a greatest hits collection, and like any self-respecting greatest hits comp, there’s one or two new tracks to rope the diehards into paying $15 for what they already own.
That song is “Raise Your Glass”. After opening with a not-quite guitar progression, Pink begins by…by…oh no, is she doing the Ke$ha sing talking thing? This is…I am not enjoying this. The beat is weak, the sing-talking…I was never a Pink fan, but this? Well, let’s take a look at the lyrics. “Right, right, turn off the lights/We gonna lose our minds tonight/What’s the dealio?” “Don’t be fancy/Just get dancey”? P!nk, if you date go Ke$ha on us, God help me, I will–
Hey, chorus. “So raise your glass if you are wrong/In all the right ways/All my underdogs,/we will never never be!/Anything but loud/And nitty gritty/Dirty little freaks!” Alright, I can live with this. It’s still the “be yourself” message we keep hearing, but energy of the chorus is refreshing. The beat also picked up considerably; there’s a pop-rock vibe to the wall of synths in the background (this would make for an interesting live track). And it’s kinda danceable.
The second verse throws in some ad-libs (personal favorite: “It’s so fucking on right now”), and shows Pink having more fun with the still horrible lyrics. It’s bearable, but just so. Then there’s another copy/paste chorus, and we get to the bridge, but not before an “Oh shit, my glass is empty…that sucks“. Aka: the point of the song where I actually chuckled.
This bridge is really where the song really shines: Pink can actually sing, and while the lyrics might be cliche, they work really well. The line “If you’re too school for cool” didn’t leave a good first impression with me, but after a few listens, I thought it worked really well for giving P!nk a target demographic that’d actually get something out of the song. And as we get to the last verse, the little “SORAISE YO–ah, fuck–SO RAISE YOUR GLASS” might be the funniest moment in Top 40 pop this year to boot. One final rinse of chorus with the prerequisite (but still tasteful) vocal riffing on the top, and we’re done.
“Raise Your Glass” is thematically on-par with “We R Who We R”, but destroys that song for a few reasons. First off, none of the latter’s annoying qualities are present. But more importantly, P!nk’s being honest with us here. If you look at her past hits, the lyrical content has always been that of a ballad or “I’M P!NK, MOTHERFUCKER.” For evidence, I merely submit the bridge.
I’ll be honest, though, I didn’t really feel this song at first. It was kind of catchy and predictably Pink, but never swayed me either way. As far as Top 40 goes, it’s definitely a grower, but a rewarding one. And hey, Pink is having fun, and a party with Pink is a party I’d love to be at.