From “Love” To “Issues,” The Best Pop Songs Of Q1
2017 has been an interesting year for pop music. Radio is still obsessed with emotional, down-tempo dance music (basically The Chainsmokers and all their imitators), but the fringe-dwellers are doing things very differently. Genre is now a thing of the past and streaming has opened the gate for a new wave of international artists to make an impact. I love pop from both ends of the spectrum, which is why I decided to round-up Q1’s (January, February and March) best songs.
Let’s start with the newcomers. Julia Michaels came out swinging with the year’s best debut single, while Bantu successfully infused radio-friendly anthems with African rhythms and Astrid S brought Scandinavian pop to the mainstream. The veterans are also holding their own. Aimee Mann is back and depressing as ever. Nelly Furtado is enjoying a creative rebirth and Jennifer Hudson released the best song of her career. Check out the highlights of Q1, 2017 (in alphabetical order) below.
Aimee Mann — “You Never Loved Me”
The most depressing song, possibly ever.
Aldous Harding — “Imagining My Man”
Weird, wonderful and occasionally jarring pop.
Alma — “Chasing Highs”
The first of two Finns to overachieve this year.
Astrid S — “Breathe”
Icy electro-pop doesn’t get any better.
Bantu — “Roll With Me”
When African rhythms and pop production collide.
Betsy — “Waiting”
This disco anthem sounds completely out of place in 2017, which is why I love it.
Bipolar Sunshine — “Are You Happy”
Bittersweet electronic pop with a massive chorus.
Bruno Mars — “That’s What I Like”
Smooth as silk.
Charli XCX feat. Uffie — “Babygirl”
The highlight of Charli’s brilliant mixtape.
Clean Bandit and Zara Larsson — “Symphony”
The best thing Zara’s done since “Lush Life.”
Cupcakke — “Cumshot”
Saving rap, one song at a time.
Future Islands — “Ran”
Soaring synth-pop with an ’80s twist.
Iggy Azalea — “Mo Bounce”
Shut up, I love it.
Jason Derulo — “Swalla”
Jennifer Hudson — “Remember Me”
J Hud’s best song to date. Why isn’t this number one?
Julia Michaels — “Issues”
The most impressive debut single of 2017.
Kygo & Selena Gomez — “It Ain’t Me”
The best club collaboration of 2017.
Lana Del Rey — “Love”
Only Lana can save us from the abyss.
Lxandra — “Flicker”
The second Finn to release a really good song this year.
Meg Mac — “Low Blows”
It was worth the two-year wait.
Nelly Furtado — “Magic”
My favorite song on Nelly’s magnificent The Ride.
Sigrid — “Don’t Kill My Vibe”
2017’s cutest fuck-you anthem.
Skott — “Glitter & Gloss”
Quirky forest-pop from Sweden’s rising star.
Vallis Alps — “East”
Mood music in the best possible sense.
Wrabel x Galantis — “Bloodstain”
I loved the original version, but this remix really takes it to the next level. Listen to all the songs in my playlist below.