Welcome to the first Billboard Hot 100 Top 40 Review of 2016 where I give my opinions on the Top 40 songs of the United States. It’s a new year and a new batch of hits, though things are moving a bit slowly with it being January. Let’s get started.
#40. No Role Modelz-J Cole: I like J Cole, but like many people, I think Wet Dreamz should have been the hit instead of No Role Modelz, which isn’t bad, don’t get me wrong. I actually like the song in spite of its flaws. Yeah, the lyrics are a bit shallow as he’s mostly talking about sex and shit-talking women who are in reality TV shows, but there’s a sense of self-awareness that helps the song out. And the production is pretty awesome. Not as good as Wet Dreamz and some of the lyrics are questionable (like mentioning that Martin Luther King would have been on your label; seriously, what the hell, dude?), but still a good song. I give it a B.
#39. Down In The DM-Yo Gotti: Those who aren’t up to date with hip-hop won’t know a thing about Yo Gotti. To be honest, I don’t know much about him either and judging by how much this song sucks ass, I don’t think I want to. Down In The DM is a song where a rapper is hitting on some other dude’s girlfriend online and is trying to convince them to have sex with him. So yeah. Another song where an asshole is trying to steal your girlfriend. Goody. Like a lot of mainstream rap songs now, the production is dark and dreary, making the listening experience not so fun. Why is shit on the charts again? *sigh* I give it an F.
#38. Stand By You-Rachel Platten: Rachel Platten is basically a walking punchline amongst my fellow music reviewers thanks to the insomnia-curing Fight Song, the most generic, by-the-book self-empowerment SOOOOOOOOONG ever made. Her follow-up single Stand By You is a much better song, but not by much. The instrumentation is okay until the chorus, but I’ve heard better. The writing is nothing to write home to since the sentiment has been done a million times before and Rachel still sounds like diet Kelly Clarkson. There’s really nothing that makes me want to listen to this song again. It gets a C from me.
#37. One Call Away-Charlie Puth: Seems like Charlie Puth has accepted the title of Whitest Artist Ever and went all-out on this song. One Call Away is one of the whitest songs ever released, more so than Charlie’s last song Marvin Gaye. The instrumentation is weak, his singing is weak, and the writing especially is weak, especially when he compares himself to Superman on the hook. Really, dude? Not with weak shit. Anyways, while One Call Away isn’t as bad as Marvin Gaye, it’s not good either. This song gets a D.
#36. See You Again-Wiz Khalifa ft Charlie Puth: A
#35. Trap Queen-Fetty Wap: F
#34. Break Up In A Small Town-Sam Hunt: F
#33. Hide Away-Daya: The moment I first heard Hide Away, it annoyed the crap outta me and it continued doing so with each consecutive listen and just got worse. The production irritates me with that barely audible melody, the chorus synths, the clattering, offbeat percussion and drums, and that terrible bridge. The writing is basically the Nice Guy Syndrome but with the gender roles reversed where Daya is complaining that the guys she like are into girls who are different from her. It’s very juvenile pandering to the high school demographic. This song gets an F from me.
#32. My House-Flo Rida: I miss the days when Flo Rida was irrelevant because that was when there was less filler party/club songs. 2016 and this guy has another Top 40 hit. While this song is an improvement over GDFR, it’s mediocre at best with the only thing good about it is the beat, which is just wasted here. Outside of the production, it’s your typical Flo Rida song about how cool he is partying, only this time, it’s at a house party, which, in my opinion, isn’t that different from the club (booze, drugs, loud music, sex, etc). Not the worst song Flo Rida has ever made, but it’s nothing special. I’ll be glad to see this song fall, which sadly won’t happen anytime soon looking at how it’s doing. I give it a D and that’s all because of the beat.
#31. Lean On-Major Lazer & DJ Snake ft MØ: A
#30. Say It-Tory Lanez: F
#29. Me, Myself, And I-G-Eazy ft Bebe Rexha: I’m amazed by the sudden popularity of G-Eazy because I never hear a lot about him. And honestly, there’s not much to him. The guy isn’t bad, but he pretty much follows most of the tropes of mainstream rap and his rapping style is a combination of Kendrick Lamar and Drake but without the things that made those two interesting. To be fair, Me Myself And I is an okay song with a pretty good hook from Bebe Rexha and some decent production. But the weakest part of the song is G-Eazy himself. He just contributes more luxury rap while still sounding like Drake. Like I said, this song is okay, but I’ve heard better songs of its kind. I give it a C.
#28. Perfect-One Direction: D
#27. Watch Me-Silento: F
#26. Cake By The Ocean-DNCE: Just when you though bad music from one Jonas Brother was enough, here comes another one, but instead of ripping off Justin Timberlake, this one has a band called DNCE (which is a stupid ass name BTW, and yes, that’s how they spelled it because poor literacy is KEWL) and they’re ripping off Maroon 5 and the results are disastrous. Their debut single Cake By The Ocean isn’t just bad, it’s AWFUL. First off, the instrumentation is garbage, it’s the most watered-down, processed pop shit that even Maroon 5 would turn down. Secondly, the title. Cake By The Ocean. The phrase itself makes no sense and as a metaphor for sex, it’s awful, made worse by the unsexy douchebaggery lyrics, which is just lame double-entendres for sex and forced swearing. This shit is Maroon 5 at their worst times ten. Easily a contender for worst song of 2016. I give it an F.
#25. Confident-Demi Lovato: A
#24. Can’t Feel My Face-The Weeknd: A
#23. Die A Happy Man-Thomas Rhett: D
#22. I Know What You Did Last Summer-Shawn Mendes: Before I talk about this song, let me talk about Stitches and why it wore off on me. The more I look into the writing, the more I realize it wasn’t that good, plus, the Bieber overtones were too much to overlook. Now here’s Shawn Mendes’ second single with one of the members of Fifth Harmony. Outside of sharing a name with a bad horror movie, this song is the textbook definition of forgettable mediocrity. The instrumentation and production sounds like some Radio Disney shit. Mendes and the Fifth Harmony girl don’t do anything to impress with this generic love song. I’ll most likely forget about this song after hearing. It gets a D.
#21. Wildest Dreams-Taylor Swift: F
#20. Ex’s And Oh’s-Elle King: A
#19. Antidote-Travi$ Scott: F
#18. 679-Fetty Wap ft Remy Boyz: F
#17. Don’t-Bryson Tiller: F
#16. In The Night-The Weeknd: A
#15. On My Mind-Ellie Goulding: B
#14. White Iverson-Post Malone: F
#13. Roses-The Chainsmokers ft ROZES: C
#12. Jumpman-Drake & Future: F
#11. The Hills-The Weeknd: A
#10. Like I’m Gonna Lose You-Meghan Trainor ft John Legend: B
#9. Here-Alessia Cara: A
#8. What Do You Mean-Justin Bieber: F
#7. Stitches-Shawn Mendes: D
#6. Same Old Love-Selena Gomez: B
#5. Stressed Out-Twenty One Pilots: One of my favorite albums last year was Blurryface by Twenty One Pilots, an indie pop record dealing with the music industry and fame. The big hit single off of it is Stressed Out, which isn’t the best song off the entire record (that goes to Tear In My Heart), but it’s a damn great song. It’s a song dealing with nostalgia and wanting to go back to childhood. Tyler Joseph’s rapping and singing has shown some improvement from the previous Twenty One Pilots album. The instrumentation is simple and effective. I’m just happy to see Twenty One Pilots achieve success in spite of them not wanting to on record. This song gets an A.
#4. Hotline Bling-Drake: F
#3. Love Yourself-Justin Bieber: D
#2. Hello-Adele: A
#1. Sorry-Justin Bieber: D
No Role Modelz
Cake By The Ocean
Down In The DM, Hide Away
So those were the Top 40 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 as of January 12, 2016. Stay tuned next month when I do another Top 40 Review. This week, I tackle Nickelback in a new Target Practice.