Welcome back to another Top 40 Review where I give my opinions on the 40 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 that the United States currently looked at and said, “we want to hear this over and over again,” much to the annoyance of others. It’s September, which means that summer is coming to a close and I’m starting another year of college, which means a boatload of stress piled on to the ones that I have while doing this website and staying on schedule. Let’s get started.
#40. H.O.L.Y.-Florida Georgia Line: F
#39. Starving-Hailee Steinfeld & Grey ft Zedd: I saw this lineup and didn’t know what to expect. Hailee Steinfeld made the dreck that was Love Myself, I don’t know who Grey is, and Zedd has good songs like Clarity and… well, Clarity. Here they are with Starving, which is just okay. The guitar in the song sounds pretty good, but the production is pretty standard with some trap percussion added in. The drop does nothing for me, it sounds like every single drop nowadays in 2016, only it doesn’t really annoy me that much. All of this amounts to another dime-a-dozen sex song and a decent-at-best performance from Hailee. This song generates no emotional reaction from me, so I won’t give this any more listens. I give it a C.
#38. Work-Rihanna ft Drake: F
#37. Stressed Out-Twenty One Pilots: A
#36. No Limit-Usher ft Young Thug: Usher, why do you keep doing this to yourself and everyone else? Instead of Crash (which is a great song) being a hit, we get… No Limit, a song that might have a spot for one of the worst songs that Usher has ever made. This song proves that Usher is at his worst when he makes an attempt at rap. Using a drowsy trap beat, lyrics that contains painful references to Master P and No Limit Records, and flows that nearly every modern shitty rapper are using. Oh, and we have Young Thug, who shows up to make a terrible song even worse. Can we just ignore this guy? He’s an attention-seeking troll making awful music and his presence is like a zit the size of a pinky nail. There’s just no limit to how much No Limit sucks, which is why it gets an F.
#35. Peter Pan-Kelsea Ballerini: Okay, I have to admit: Peter Pan, the song, has grown on me. The production still doesn’t do anything for me, but in terms of country music production, I heard FAR worse. What makes this song work is the writing and Kelsea Ballerini herself. In this song, Peter Pan is used as a metaphor for an ex who refuses to grow up and face reality and Kelsea sells it pretty well. One of the better country hits this year and it’s completely pointless to compare this to Lost Boy because that would be like comparing a Mercedes-Benz to a rusty bicycle with a flattened wheel and a missing seat. Peter Pan gets a B from me.
#34. Timmy Turner-Desiinger the Future clone: F
#33. Make Me-Britney Spears ft G-Eazy: A couple of weeks ago, the VMAs occurred because MTV wants to remind us that it’s not a shell of its former self that cares so little about music and would rather air shitty reality TV shows and crap, being fed money by easily-impressed teenagers following trends like flies to a pile of poop. As you can imagine, I didn’t give a shit and I watched The Get Down on Netflix instead (which y’all have to check out, it’s pretty dope). Anywho, because of the VMAs, a bunch of artists got boosts in sales, streams, and the charts, one of them being Britney Spears. It is 2016 and for some god-forsaken reason, there are people who want more Britney on the charts. You know, I would be impressed that she has (barely) lasted as long as she did if the music she was making was any good, but it’s not. For example, look at Make Me. Production with heavy synths, vocal effects, and barely any melody makes the listening experience frustrating. Britney barely does anything new as she tries to be sexy and it comes off as desperate. And then she teamed up with one of the least interesting artists of 2016 in G-Eazy, who is a forgettable nonpresence. Britney is officially in the same boat as Madonna in terms of pop stars who are past their prime and don’t know when to call it a career. I’ll be happy to see this continue sinking like a rock. I give this an F.
#32. Just Like Fire-Pink: D
#31. Work From Home-Fifth Harmony ft Ty Dolla $ign: F
#30. This Girl-Kungs vs Cookin’ On 3 Burners: I’m surprised to see this song here because songs like this usually don’t get this far up. I’m not complaining, though, because it’s fantastic. I fucking love this song so much. That production gives me life with a great combination of bass, guitar, horns, and organ, and house drums. The way Kungs remixed the original song of the same title from Cookin’ On 3 Burners (which is an awesome name, BTW) created some of the best grooves of the year and on the charts. Plus, it’s complimented by Kylie Auldist’s singing that her love can’t be bought. If this song sticks around, it’s guaranteed at least a Top 5 spot on my Best of 2016 list. I give it an A.
#29. Unsteady-X Ambassadors: I really enjoyed Renegades by X Ambassadors, I just wish I can enjoy this song as well. But, dear Odin, that production is not doing them any favors with the muted piano, muffled drums, and a sound effect that I’m pretty sure came from a broken movie projector. The premise of the song isn’t bad; it’s written in the perspective of a kid trying to convince his parents not to split up and Sam Harris does sell the emotion, but the writing botched the idea by barely giving us details and the details we get are vague and barebones, they might as well be nothing. It’s just a miserable song all around, I give it a D.
#28. Sit Still Look Pretty-Daya: In the latest edition of music made for hipster girls, we have the latest single from Daya, Sit Still Look Pretty, and it’s just as cringeworthy as Hide Away. The production is just as bad with all of the same problems as the previous single, though with more constraint. Daya is still bland as hell vocally and even though I can get behind a girl not wanting to just be some spectacle to look at because she looks pretty, the writing stinks of an arrogant, holier-than-thou pretense that make me hate the song even more. Why do people like this chick again? I give it an F.
#27. Controlla-Drake: D
#26. Hymn For The Weekend-Coldplay: B
#25. Never Be Like You-Flume ft Kai: C
#24. Panda-Desiigner the Future clone: F
#23. For Free-DJ Khaled ft Drake: F
#22. I Hate U I Love U-gnash ft Olivia O’Brien: D
#21. Sucker For Pain-a shitload of people: B
#20. Gold-Kiiara: F
#19. Luv-Tory Lanez: I’ve kinda softened a bit on Say It by Tory Lanez for a while. I still don’t think it’s good, but at least it’s not Luv. Dear Jesus, this song blows. This dude is singing over sterile dancehall production, just like a certain Canadian rapper we all know is doing right now. The vocals are shit as not only is there a fake Jamaican accent, they’re also drowned in Auto-Tune. Listening to the singing reminds me of Ron Browz on Pop Champagne, the Auto-Tune sticks out so much that it distracts you from the actual song itself. Not that there was much to the song anyways as it’s your typical generic love song that has all of the cliches of the R&B playbook. No more bad dancehall and Tory Lanez, please. I give this crap an F.
#18. Side To Side-Ariana Grande ft Nicki Minaj: Plenty of artists benefited from the VMAs boost including Ariana Grande, who released Side By Side as a single. A lot of people I know like the song and I envy them because it’s just okay to me. The reggae-esque production is easily the best part of the song and it’s just okay. The song is about sex (because of course it is) and how good dick has a chick walking weird. Ariana’s vocal performance is fine enough and also, a wild Nicki Minaj appears… and that’s all you need to know. In terms of songs off of Dangerous Woman, this isn’t one of my favorites, but I understand why people would like it. I give it a C.
#17. Too Good-Drake ft Rihanna: C
#16. Can’t Stop The Feeling-Justin Timberlake: C
#15. Into You-Ariana Grande: A
#14. Broccoli-D.R.A.M. ft Lil Boat: F
#13. Treat You Better-Shawn Mendes: F
#12. Let Me Love You-DJ Snake ft Justin Bieber: Another month, more Bieber. We’re stuck with him, aren’t we? And now we have him on another EDM song, DJ Snake’s Let Me Love You, which is such an obvious rip-off of Lean On that it’s fascinating. It has the same muted synth melody, percussion, build-up, drop, etc., and it’s all weak as hell. Bieber sounds like a white Chris Brown, which is NEVER a compliment, as he pleads for this girl not to leave for some vague reasons. I don’t know and I don’t care. This is a song that has no purpose for me and it gets a D.
#11. One Dance-Drake ft WizKid & Kyla: F
#10. We Don’t Talk Anymore-Charlie Puth ft Selena Gomez: F
#9. Needed Me-Rihanna: F
#8. Send My Love (To Your New Lover)-Adele: D
#7. This Is What You Came For-Calvin Harris ft Rihanna: F
#6. Ride-Twenty One Pilots: A
#5. Don’t Let Me Down-The Chainsmokers ft Daya: D
#4. Cheap Thrills-Sia ft Sean Paul: C
#3. Cold Water-Major Lazer ft Justin Bieber & MØ: C
#2. Heathens-Twenty One Pilots: D
#1. Closer-The Chainsmokers ft Halsey: D
So those were the Top 40 songs on the Billboard Hot 100 as of September 13, 2016. Stay tuned next month when I do another Top 40 Review. This week, a Musical Appreciation on Earth, Wind, and Fire’s September.