This week’s roundup features some über-catchy power pop from one of the best up-and-coming spitfire singer-songstresses, a little spook-R&B from a fashionable “It” girl, and some motivational gospel deep from within the soul of a member of Destiny’s Child.
1.) Cady Groves, “Forget You”
It’s been a minute since we last heard from our “This Little Girl” pop pistol, Cady Groves. But now she’s back and Smurfier than ever, with her brand-new single, “Forget You” (which also happens to be featured alongside Britney Spears and G.R.L. on the upcoming “Smurfs 2″ soundtrack. Not too shabby, huh?). Much like her endlessly catchy “Love Actually,” “Forget You” is a full-on 3-minute onslaught of pure sugary-sweet power-pop goodness. Really, from that very first hook alone (“You-OOH-ooh!”), you already know you’re in trouble. “When the stars come out at night and we’re watching the same sky/ You can tell there’s no surprise, I won’t forget you,” Groves sweetly croons. It’s a little bit of a tearjerker and a happy ending all at the same time — so get ready to feel all of the emotions at once. Yay!
Listen to more Must-Hear Pop Songs after the jump.
2.) Phlo Finister, “Last Winter”
Take Lana Del Rey‘s lonesome odes, add in some of Cassie‘s icy R&B flow, and sprinkle in a little bit of The Weeknd‘s haunting, late-night production to boot. Sounds like a fairly flaw-free combination, right? It is — and it exists! Phlo Finister is a fashionable new California-bred up-and-comer, currently gearing up to make her debut in London with the Poster Girl EP. Her particular brand of indie-pop and electro-R&B has a chilling quality, especially “Last Winter,” an all-or-nothing, shiver-inducing devotional from the point of view of a bad girl on the run. “I’m wanted by the law ’cause/ I’m married to the mob,” she whisper-confesses above ambient sounds and a desolate guitar strum. It’s striking and gorgeous, and surely a sign of great things to come.
3.) Koda Kumi, “Is This Trap?”
J-Pop superstar Koda Kumi’s gearing up to release her 55th single this July (for those unaware, J-pop princesses churn out singles and albums like, well, Rihanna), which hosts three new tracks including “Is This Trap?” an immediately infectious club-pop banger. The surging electro track plays something like David Guetta and Rihanna’s “Who’s That Chick?” or any of Jennifer Lopez‘s joyous club thumpers with Pitbull, with an instantly infectious celebratory hook (“Oo-whoa-oh-oh!”), as Kumi gets breathlessly head-over-heels in love and begins to wonder: “You are my dream!/ Is this trap?/ I don’t know!” Forget the dubious grammar of that rhetorical question: Kumi’s got herself a smash.
4.) Adam J, “Love Is All We Need” (Featuring Amelle & Nightcrashers)
Ever since the latest iteration of the Sugababes went on hiatus, the future of each individual ‘Babe has been a bit murky, but not Amelle Berrabah‘s! She’s been in the studio, whipping up solo tracks, and remaining busy as ever since the girls stepped away. Her latest effort is a collaboration between DJ Adam J and production troupe Nightcrashers, featuring her vocals on top of the pulsing beats. Unlike the more soulful selections from the Suga back catalog, “Love Is All We Need” is a full-on report to the dance floor moment, complete with big beat buildups and nasty drops. It’s purely one dedicated to the EDM crowd, but Berrabah’s unique, raspy vocals are a pleasure to hear crooning above the stabbing synthesizers.
5.) Michelle Williams, “If We Had Your Eyes”
What have the beloved Children of Destiny been up to lately? Well, Beyoncé‘s been teasing us through 2013 with snippets, commercials, and album rumors. Kelly Rowland‘s been giving us “Kisses Down Low” and airing out her “Dirty Laundry.” And as for Michelle Williams? She’s supplying us with some music to make us “holy twerk.” (No, that’s a thing.) “If We Had Your Eyes” is the first taste of her upcoming album — the first new music the Unexpected songstress has released in more than five years. Produced by Harmony Samuels, the gospel/old-school R&B infused track slowly staggers on in the background and puts one thing at the forefront: Miss Michelle’s vocals. As we like to say in the industry, she’s really sangin’! Runs for days! “If we had your eyes/ We’d see things right,” she cries. Welcome to Destiny’s Church.
Bradley Stern is a writer from New York. In his spare time, he enjoys organizing his Britney Spears CD collection in reverse chronological order and writing impassioned letters to Congress urging that Madonnalogy be taught in all public schools. But most of all, he spends his time tweeting and musing daily about pop music on his blog, MuuMuse.
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