This week’s roundup features a lush late-night tune from one of EDM’s finest, pop’s most underrated chanteuse dusting off a six-year-old single (and remaining flawless while doing so), and some Motown sunshine from a pop princess with queen-size pipes.
1.) Kaskade, “Why Ask Why” featuring Late Night Alumni
Kaskade has always been at the forefront of providing ethereal, uplifting electronic music to lift the spirits (and heart rates) of his devoted fan base dancing along. On his brand-new record Atmosphere (released today!), the talented producer teams up with his longtime bandmates Late Night Alumni to supply yet another round of moonlit, synth-pop bliss.
Much like his emotional Strobelite Seduction cuts like “Step One Two” and “Move For Me,” “Why Ask Why” sweeps into the speakers on top of a gorgeous wall of sound, which LNA’s lead vocalist Becky Jean Williams lifts up to heavenly heights thanks to her whispered, honey-sweet vocals. Why ask why? Exactly. Just press play.
Listen to more Must-Hear Pop Songs after the jump.
2.) Ariana Grande, “Tattooed Heart”
Alright, let’s sing the praises of this princess properly: Ariana Grande is seriously bringing vocals, vocals, vocals back to the pop scene with her whimsically sweet debut, Yours Truly. One of the most stunning standouts from the album would be “Tattooed Heart,” a Motown-infused swoon anthem complete with key changes, finger snaps and those jaw-dropping, “But wait, like, is that actually a human?” wailing chops.
Forget the fact that she’s referencing an era long before her lifetime — both sonically and lyrically. “Like it’s 1955″? Girl, you and I both know that we grew up watching “Rugrats”! Whatevs, though, this is throwback gold.
+ Listen to ARIANA GRANDE’S “TATTOOED HEART”
3.) JoJo, “Anything (Remix)” featuring Casey Veggies
There aren’t too many artists who could drop a remix of a nearly six-year-old single and still sound just as fresh today — but Queen JoJo surely can. After performing a showcase in New York City (covered by our own Jenna Hally Rubenstein who subsequently got to snuggle with Jo right after — JEALOUS FOREVER), the über-talented R&B-pop chanteuse re-released her 2007 Toto-sampling single “Anything,” featuring all-new vocals plus a verse by rapper Casey Veggies.
The result? Even more melodic chops from the industry’s most underrated songstress — and a reminder of why her emancipation from shady label dealings is more necessary than ever. #FREEJOJO
+ Listen to JOJO’S “ANYTHING” FEATURING CASEY VEGGIES
4.) Zendaya, “Bottle You Up”
“Shake It Up” star Zendaya had us putting her smooth, slinky debut single “Replay” on, well, replay. The latest reveal from her forthcoming self-titled album, “Bottle You Up,” sees the singer in hot pursuit of a storage unit large enough to store her sweetie away for good.
“Wish I could hold you and never let you leave,” she croons above the grinding swag — err, #Zswag beat, bringing that kind of Cassie/ JoJo/ Danity Kane flavor so missing on the radio today. If the rest of the record sounds this good, Zendaya’s debut effort may prove to be the surprise pop smash of the year.
+ Listen to ZENDAYA’S “BOTTLE YOU UP”
5.) Mutya Keisha Siobhan, “Flatline (MJ Cole Remix)”
The time has finally come for the grand return of Mutya Keisha Siobhan — otherwise known as the Origibabes, aka, the original lineup of the renowned UK girl group, Sugababes. After unveiling their incredible (re-)debut single back in July, the soulful trio have now officially dropped the track in the UK. (At long last!)
While our pop lovers across the pond send the girls hurdling to the top of the charts to rightfully reclaim their throne, there are plenty of brand-new mixes for us to enjoy. Most recently, the girls uploaded the MJ Cole remix, which sends the song skittering into funky new territory — and ensures that there won’t be any flatlining on the dance floor anytime soon.
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.