I hate that I don’t write about pop much anymore, apart from in tweets I delete after 10 minutes (flashback to the first years after I graduated when there were multiple blogs a day, it was A LOT), so I’m going to attempt to jot down a few bits every weekend about the best New Music Friday/Thursday/whateverfuckingdaytheydoit releases. Yes, there is every chance I’ll have abandoned ship by, like, March.
Last year I made the full switch to streaming, after previously downloading songs I liked from iTunes with no regard for the cumulative costs. And reader, it was EXPENSIVE!! So I jumped to Spotify and I kept a rolling 2018 playlist of all the songs I liked as the weeks went by (there were 137 on it by the end). Now, I shall be doing the same this year – only this time, I’ll be pissing myself for attention on this very blog as I do it!
You can follow the playlist here (there’s also a player embedded at the bottom). Obviously it’s a bit scarce at the moment but STICK WITH IT.
It’s the first weekend of January so – inevitably! – pop is still relatively quiet. Though it is fun looking at the singles chart and seeing loads of great stuff shooting up to new peaks now the Christmas songs have vanished (Zara is finally in the Top 10 and the Clean Bandit x Marina track is Top 20, for example – though it seems the Cheryl single is truly dead; RIP). Still, there are a couple of new tracks I’m excited about. And these are they!
▶️ Favourite Thing – Fleur East
This week she’s been speaking about her jaw-dropping exit from Syco, explaining that execs weren’t convinced the music she was making would give them another Sax-sized hit. But Favourite Thing proves she hasn’t lost her knack for dancefloor-ready anthems: she’s right to say that it’s a bit less smack-you-in-the-genitals-with-a-hammer than Sax, but it still goes off. Infectious chorus, tribal influences, chant-a-long bits… The first week of the year is the best possible time for her to release, given the competition; and I hope she’s got some big TV performance opportunities open to her. But given that label situation, I… don’t think we should anticipate a No1 smash.
Still! GIVE FLEUR THE WORLD IN 2K19!
▶️ Juice – Lizzo
Lizzo’s popularity feels like it’s been climbing for a while now, so could this be the year she achieves big mainstream success? I fucking hope so, because Juice is such a banger and she is such a gift. It’s been two days since this song came out and I’m still hearing new bits, new lines, new details in the instrumentation that I adore.
Her personality shines, the chorus slaps, the lyrics are are a riot (“No, I’m not a snack at all / Look, baby, I’m the whole damn meal”) – and if this isn’t on loads of Best Singles lists come December… well, we’re in for a phenomenal year.
See you next week. Unless this is the shortest-lived fad I’ve ever had!