"As Long As You Love Me" by Justin Bieber & Big Sean
Year-end position: #34
By his own standards, I will admit that this is Justin Bieber's best song. As a pick-up song, there's a certain apocalyptic desperation to it, so the emotions it evokes automatically give it a leg up over the competition. Then again, its dubstep beat may not have been the best musical choice: it enhances the mood in some spots, but renders the work impossible to take seriously in others. Plus, leave it to Big Sean -- the same guy who dumped "Dance (A$s)" upon us -- to trash the whole thing with a sloppy rap verse. Actually, I should thank him for not giving me an excuse to like this song.
"Beauty And A Beat" by Justin Bieber & Nicki Minaj
Year-end position: #N/A
Peak weekly position: #7
I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, but this one was an actual guilty pleasure of mine. Sure, it's the most risque Bieber's ever been. Sure, it uses a "dirty bit" after the chorus. Sure, Nicki Minaj manages to get away with using the B-word on a Justin Bieber song. And this...
Justin, BieberIf this line is not instantly hilarious to you, then you probably weren't aware that Bieber and Selena Gomez broke up right around the time this came out as a single. ...What, I wasn't trying to find about them!
You know I'mma hit him with the ether
Buns out, wiener
But I gotta keep my eye out for Selener
"Drive By" by Train
from California 37
Year-end position: #19
"Drive By" was going to be the song which represented Train on the worst-of list, but I switched it out with "50 Ways To Say Goodbye" at the eleventh hour. Nonetheless, it contains such gems as:
On the upside of a downward spiralMore than likely, this was intended to mean that everyone knows about him and his girl. But I and my creative mind saw this as him sticking her with an STD. And you thought he was a nice guy. >:-) I should've expected nothing less from someone who specifically said his relationship does not involve getting shot by rival gang members going past in a car, because that's what a drive-by is. Seriously man, think before you fit an outside catch-phrase into a song! And while you're at it, did Hefty really pay you to plug their trash bags in the song? Man, I'm going to have a lot of fun reviewing the rest of the album.
My love for you went viral
"Glad You Came" and "Chasing The Sun" by The Wanted
from Battleground / Third Strike
Year-end position: #6 / N/A
Peak weekly position: #3 / 50
The boy band wars flared up in 2012, but not as I remember them. Both parties, One Direction and The Wanted are less concerned with coordinated outfits and dances than the many that sprang up at the turn of the millenium, but sadly, tight songwriting was thrown under the train as well. Since I view the apparent leaders, One Direction, as overhyped sell-outs, I've turned to The Wanted, who sadly left me equally as disappointed. Sure they do use some creative rhyming techniques in the first verse of "Glad You Came", but then the chorus passes and... the second verse is exactly the same. Even worse, their follow-up single "Chasing The Sun" feels like the exact same song, too. No matter who wins the boy band wars this time around, we all lose.
"Red Solo Cup" by Toby Keith
from Clancy's Tavern
Year-end position: #84
To be honest with you, I try to avoid easy targets when making these kinds of list. And a stereotypical-sounding country song praising a disposable product certainly qualifies as such. Yeah, it's dopey, but as a novelty song it's an adorable kind of dopey, so I can't stay mad at it. The other reason I didn't include this is, well... I don't listen to a lot of country music, which speaks to my tastes as a blue-stater, but sadly knocks out a good chunk of the Year-End Hot 100. Without the experience of this song, I'm not able to prepare the same kind of opinions that I make for other songs, like...
"Starships" by Nicki Minaj
from Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded
Year-end position: #9
2012 was a big year for Nicki Minaj, with her second album Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded tearing up the charts. But unlike the original Pink Friday, and mind you I don't own either album, I can't pick any track off of Roman Reloaded which I would classify as "good". Like this, for example: the album's biggest-charting single, the dance-pop jam "Starships". And where is this taking place? The beach, the dance floor, a starship? Would it kill today's songwriters to keep a little consistency now and again!? This song is scatterbrained, and the writers were, as their lyrics put it, "higher than a mother[verb]er."
"Wild Ones" by Flo Rida & Sia
from Wild Ones
Year-end position: #11
Flo Rida is such an enigma, eh? This year he's put out an unbroken string of top-ten hits, yet none of them contribute anything to what would be his personality. And whilst I've heard a lot of negative buzz (which I agree with) for "Whistle" and its hamfisted sex metaphors, I'd instead give the nod to "Wild One" as his worst song of the year. At least "Whistle" had a different sound to it and was campy in its suckatude. "Wild One" on the other hand, is a carbon-copy of his last single "Good Feeling", but with even weaker lyrics (he rhymes "private show" with itself in three consecutive lines), stealing the talents of another promising white girl for the chorus (and replacing her in the music video... again), and all around tedium.