What’s that? Another fairly uninteresting Top 20? Thanks, Billboard! Then again, I have a lot on my plate this week anyway, so…hm…oh!
When I do a Radio Rant for a song, it tends to be pretty early in that song’s run on the Hot 100, and unsurprisingly, the 20 most popular songs in the country don’t get that way by lacking staying power. Usually. So even after the Radio Rant, I end up hearing these songs all over the place for in some cases, months, and my opinion on them changes a bit.
This happens most with the songs that get an “ok” in RRs; time and exposure nudge the initial “ok” into a more definitive “like” or “dislike”. For instance, I didn’t mind “Firework” at first, but after hearing it for months on end, two seconds of those synth bells made me gag. And in other cases, time has been kind to songs. Songs like…
5. Rihanna – Only Girl (In the World)
Rihanna falls in the middle of the field for me. None/very little of her material is outright terrible, but once I finish listening to “Rude Boy” or “S&M”, I’m perfectly fine not hearing them again. That’s not the case with “Only Girl (In the World)”, which got a lukewarm review in November, and has only gotten better since then. It’s one of club-pop!Rihanna’s Only Songs (I Can Dance To), and it balances Rihanna’s sleek and fun sides excellently. The chorus is huge, and the bridge is a straight rush. Definitely gotten better over time.
4. Far East Movement/The Black Eyed Peas – Rocketeer/Just Can’t Get Enough
I couldn’t decide which one of these to cut, then I realized that they’re pretty much the same song. They’re both from performers I tend to not like, both follow-up some terrible singles, and both have a great chorus and very pretty production. And, as I’ve learned over repeated listens, both are more enjoyably catchy than I initially thought. Of course, each song still has the lame, goofy rapping in the verses, but even that’s kind of endearing because of the chilled out, spacey mood both make.
3. Neon Trees – Animal
I gotta give Neon Trees credit, “Animal” was probably one of the least expected hits of 2010, and while it wasn’t the biggest success, it certainly held on longer than I think anyone expected it to. Part of me still thinks of it as KillersxStrokes fanfiction, but honestly, it’s a totally enjoyable listen. It’s not trying to sell a million downloads, there’s no big names attached to it, “Animal” is just a fun, unpredicted pop rock hit. However, I’ll be utterly amazed if Neon Trees is anything but a one hit wonder.
2. Katy Perry feat. Kanye West – E.T.
I know I only reviewed this one last month, but hey, time is time, right? I’m still split on Kanye’s verses; sometimes they make me roll my eyes, sometimes I chuckle at how inane they are. Y’know, like dealing with a toddler. As I said in the original Radio Rant, the song doesn’t really fall flat where Perry’s other singles do, but this chorus has grown so much on me. The stomping beat, the wailing synths, and the interesting chord progression make it my favorite of Perry’s Teenage Dream singles.
Now for the number one. Oh boy…
1. Ke$ha – We R Who We R
I cannot stand Ke$ha. Can’t do it. Nope. If I could wipe one pop star’s career from the face of the Earth, I’d go back in time, stop “Tik Tok” before it happened, and make sure Kesha Rose Sebert stayed some nerdy-ass woman who ended up publishing papers on–I don’t know–breeding patterns in wild ferrets.
Yet here it is,”We R Who We R”: a song I lambasted during its Radio Rant, and politely tolerated for an album review. And aside from a few cringe worthy lines in the verses, it’s stacked. Super fun chorus, possible Dr. Luke’s best production…damn shame he had to give it to Ke$ha. But despite her, it still does its job as a big, dumb, fun pop song.