Charli XCX & Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Backseat” Is Shimmery Pop Perfection

Charli XCX, Tove Lo & ALMA's 'Out Of My Head'
Charli XCX recruits Tove Lo and ALMA for 'Out Of My Head,' the first taste of 'Pop 2.'

Charli XCX pulls off something of a pop miracle with her new mixtape. Pop 2 brings together every artist and producer worth listening to in electronic music without losing control of her vision. Instead, the assorted guests make themselves at home in the Brit’s quirky soundscape — adding a little of their own magic to each song. The best example of this (“Out Of My Head” is a close second) is “Backseat,” the 25-year-old’s shimmery and unexpectedly emo collaboration with Carly Rae Jepsen.

Produced by A. G. Cook and Easyfun, “Backseat” explores some of Charli’s favorite themes (fame, love and loneliness) over PC Music madness, while her beloved collaborator ups the sugary pop quotient. “I go to parties with strangers so I can figure it out,” the “Boys” hitmaker sings. “Run through a city at midnight to feel like a star, I want it all even if it’s fake.” Carly, on the other hand, sticks to matters of the heart. “I’m wide awake lyin’ next to him and feel it all, I got a thirst for distraction that I can’t take back.”

They both take turns at the melancholy chorus. “In the backseat, your song so loud,” Charli and Carly sing individually. “Drivin’ so fast, I’m better off alone.” The pop saviors finally comes together for the post-chorus (“all alone” x 19), before the Pop 2 mastermind bows out with a sad, “It’s Charli, baby.” Stream the very, very good collaboration below.

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