This week’s roundup features some dizzy disco love from one of our favorite U.K. girl groups, a surprise dose of introspection from the Queen of Milkshakes, and the almighty return of the ultimate diva.
1.) Cher, “I Walk Alone”
Cher. Enough said, am I right? The magnificent living legend has managed to thrive in the music industry for more than five decades now, churning out classics since way, way before most of us were ever born. This week, the “Believe” diva is back at it again, turning back time with her incredible 26th (I can’t even!) studio album, Closer To The Truth. So when Cher needs a badass street struttin’ jam, who better to enlist than her BFF P!nk? “I Walk Alone,” one of the key standouts on the record, was co-penned by the “So What” songstress, and it’s a killer dose of attitude: “I still got time to cope, time to hope, time to play, time to grow / But for now I gotta walk alone,” she declares on the punchy anthem. And you know what? She’s right. Cher is eternal. She will outlive us all. Know that.
+ Listen to CHER’S “I WALK ALONE”
Listen to more Must-Hear Pop Songs after the jump.
2.) Bright Light Bright Light, “An Open Heart”
U.K. electro-crooner Bright Light Bright Light (also known as Rod Thomas) might have only just tied up the loose ends of his brilliant debut, Make Me Believe In Hope, but he’s already back on his grind for another round. “An Open Heart” is the first taste of new tunes from the singer-songwriter ahead of his upcoming EP called In Your Care, co-crafted alongside Ian Masterson (of Trouser Enthusists/Thriller Jill fame). As with everything he does, the song blends together nostalgic late ’80s/early ’90s pulsations with earnest lyricism — this time about seizing the moment and embracing life with arms (and hearts) wide open. “Make yourself believe in all the love that comes to an open heart,” he pleads. You ready to let the light in?
+ Listen to BRIGHT LIGHT BRIGHT LIGHT’S “AN OPEN HEART”
3.) Diana Vickers, “Blame Game”
Been missing some Kylie Minogue? Diana Vickers may just be your best next bet. After producing her delightfully quirky electro-pop debut, Songs From The Tainted Cherry Tree, back in 2010, the talented “X Factor” alum has returned this year with an even more lush offering, co-penned by Xenomania mastermind, Miranda Cooper. The result is a solid collection of sparkling electro-pop gorgeousness in the vein of acts like Rachel Stevens, Carly Rae Jepsen, Kylie, and Girls Aloud. “Blame Game” is one of the major highlights in an album full of highlights, complete with a heaven-sent chorus and a heavy dose of back ‘n’ forth lyricism: “I got the feeling, the feeling / We’re too much of a good thing,” she achingly coos. Please stay forever, Diana!
+ Listen to DIANA VICKERS, “BLAME GAME”
4.) The Saturdays, “Disco Love”
The Saturdays have just majorly hit their stride with “Disco Love,” the latest single from their upcoming album, Living For The Weekend. The U.K. girl group’s latest offering is a bubbly, joyous ode to a love that feels as good as music sounds, armed with dozens of earworm melodies and solid pop music references throughout (“It’s never winter when it’s Donna Summer all year long!”) — there’s even a shout-out to Britney Spears‘ “…Baby One More Time” at one point. The only downside is that this song didn’t come out sooner — consider this one a solid choice for your pool party playlists next summer.
+ Listen to THE SATURDAYS’ “DISCO LOVE”
5.) Kelis, “Been Given A Morning”
You can always count on Kelis to keep you on your toes: “Been Given A Morning,” a new song that surfaced from the soulfully raspy songstress, sees the Flesh Tone singer calmly crooning above romantic strings, a delicate piano, some horns and moody ambient sound — almost like Goldfrapp‘s somber new offering. Later on, the track spirals into a synthesized explosion of textured noise. It’s an entire 180 degree switch-up on her entirely electronic 2010 effort, and, while there’s no saying where exactly her upcoming album is heading right now sonically, “Been Given A Morning” proves that she’s truly one of the most versatile artists in the game. (We’re always down for more milkshakes, though.)
+ Listen to KELIS’ “BEEN GIVEN A MORNING”
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.
Photo credit: RCA/Warner Bros/Polydor/Bright Light Bright Light/Federal Prism