2012 is coming to a close. Musically, new acts made a name for themselves and pop veterans returned with a vengeance. The next 30 songs burned up radio, tore up the clubs, or blew up in the blogosphere this past year. It’s a mix of songs you’ve most likely heard with tracks you ought to know. First up are All Time Low, Nicki Minaj, Kylie Minogue, Paulina Rubio, and will.i.am.
No. 30 will.i.am featuring Britney Spears – “Scream & Shout” / #willpower
2012 was almost a Spears free year in terms of music. The pop veteran kept busy this year judging FOX’s second season of The X Factor. She returned on will.i.am’s club banger, “Scream & Shout,” playfully demanding in a British accent: “When you hear this in the club, you’re gonna turn this sh-t up.” DJs listened to Britney and had the electro jam turning out clubs near tail end of they year. The sassy standout also recycled Spears’ iconic “It’s Britney, b-tch!” from 2007’s “Gimme More.” Oh yeah, will.i.am is on it too.
No. 29 Paulina Rubio – “Boys Will Be Boys” / Bravísima! EP
Mexican pop singer Paulina Rubio also returned this year with the sexy “Boys Will Be Boys,” her first English single since 2002’s “Don’t Say Goodbye.” Over rapid synthesizers, Spanish guitars, and an urgent accordion, Rubio powerfully sings about boys playing her. Producer RedOne (Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez) perfectly melds Latin pop and dance music on “Boys” with Rubio at the helm. She blows away any shred of the player’s ego with “pa pa papa pa prrra pa papa” gun-sounding hook.
No. 28 Kylie Minogue – “Timebomb” / Timebomb (single)
Capping off 25 years in the music industry, Australian singer Kylie Minogue released the electrified “Timebomb.” The thrilling dance track is Minogue at her best as she details a hook-up waiting to happen in the midst of bomb countdown. “It’s not the end of the world / It’s just the start of me and you,” she seductively coos on the grimy track. The synthesized urgency behind “Timebomb” is a testament to Minogue and her career not slowing down anytime soon.
No. 27 All Time Low – “For Baltimore” / Don’t Panic
Rockers All Time Low released the Don’t Panic album on their indie home label, Hopeless Records, following a departure from major label Interscope. To celebrate a return to their roots, the group put out “For Baltimore,” a hometown jam. Front man Alex Gaskarth experiments with a voice filter during the song’s solemn opening, which later blasts into a full-on rock anthem about holding onto the good times. “Hot damn, look at me now, I’m all caught up riding the high of my good luck,” Gaskarth sings with renewed energy. It’s an exhilarating number by the homecoming rock kings.
No. 26 Nicki Minaj – “Va Va Voom” / Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded – The Re-up
Rapper Nicki Minaj found success this year with a song that almost wasn’t released, the electro-pop “Va Va Voom.” Like “Superbass” before it, “Voom” was a bonus track on Minaj’s album that later got more attention than the songs actually included on the record. As much as Minaj needs to return to her hip-hop roots, she can still crank out a pop track like no one’s business. Hitmaker Dr. Luke (Britney Spears, Katy Perry) supplies Nicki with a dubstep-influenced beat while she tempts a married man. It was definitely an affair to remember.
Did your favorites make the cut? Stay tuned tomorrow as the 2012 countdown continues with Nos. 25-21!
Listen to Nos. 30-26 on Spotify here
Here’s the list for Nos. 5-1: link
Here’s the list for Nos. 10-6: link
Here’s the list for Nos. 15-11: link
Here’s the list for Nos. 20-16: link
Here’s the list for Nos. 25-21: link
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