I haven't done this in a while, but people are being amazing in pop so I decided to give some people their due (or DUA) credit. So here are seven people who have been quite amazing in Q2 of this year.
1. Dua Lipa
Dua Lipa's career is rising astronomically. Each single that has come out has shown more of Dua's prowess as a global conquering superstar. But newest single "Hotter Than Hell" is the main reason Dua is on top of this list. When you release potential single of the year material, you deserved to be taken notice and Dua Lipa is here to own your attention. "Hotter Than Hell" checks off all the boxes for best song of the year and signals the breakout moment for this breakout star. Seriously, if we get a full album of Be The One's, Last Dance's and Hotter Than Hell's, we could be in for one of the best dark pop albums of the decade.
2. Noonie Bao
Noonie Bao has completed the trifecta of singer-songwriter-superstars. It helps that her best friend is also part of that group, but Noonie has built her own reputation, with her songwriting discography increasing exponentially the more I look into her. Along with writing the best pop waltz of 2016 (there are two amazing ones out there right now), here are some other songs that Noonie has helped bring into the world.
- Say Lou Lou's voguing banger "Games For Girls"
- Alesso & Nicky Romero's "I Could Be The One", that gave Noonie her first UK #1 with her vocals at the forefront
- A couple of Clean Bandit songs, including their absolute best song and tribute to the Caribbean queen "Rihanna"
- The "I Love It" influenced banger to end all bangers, Sharks' own "Wait"
- Charli XCX's hits from her album Sucker as well as having a major input on her new material
- And let's not forget the immensely amazing sax-loving romantic youth love anthem sung by literal angel living amongst us pitiful mortals, Carly Rae Jepsen's "Run Away With Me"
Noonie has also been hanging out with some awesome people and appears to be writing new music with Charli, Tove Lo, Icona Pop, MNEK, MØ, MNDR, Kimbra and a bunch of other singers that have proven to be quite amazing in the past. I cannot wait for the next 2 years of music based on Noonie's participation in the pop writing game, as well as more of her own hits.
3. Charli XCX
- She is still on cowriting duties, including the best song off the Santigold album and the pansexual banger known as "Boys & Girls" by will.i.am and Pia Mia. It takes a really amazing artist to make will.i.am sound good.
- It also appears like Charli has been writing music for a bunch of other pop people like Noonie and Icona Pop, but it's confirmed that some of her songs will appear on the new Blondie album!!!
- Charli has also lent her voice to a couple of songs including the best song of the Miike Snow album.
- Charli has her own radio show on Apple Music that has had many amazing people in pop on it to talk about music including SOPHIE, A.G. Cook, Dua Lipa, Noonie Bao, Carly Rae Jepsen, and Blondie!!! Oh, and Azealia Banks too...
- Charli has finally started her own record label, which is something I've wanted her to do for a while. With such an amazing ear for pop music, she has already released two great singles by RIVRS and Cuckoolander through her label. We can expect a lot of great things from Vroom Vroom Recordings!
- Charli XCX is readying her own new release with the Vroom Vroom EP, showcasing the sugary cartoon pop she promised to make with SOPHIE. Each song is really great but it's Hannah Diamond duet "Paradise" that has us really excited for the new album!
- Charli XCX has also contributed a great new song for the soundtrack to a new movie. Remember how she did that with "Boom Clap" aka best song of 2014? Well, the new track "Explode" is basically "Boom Clap" on adrenaline so that's good news!
- Speaking of this movie, CHARLI XCX IS VOICING A CHARACTER IN THE ANGRY BIRDS MOVIE!
- What an amazing person Charli is.
4. Tove Lo
Finishing off the trifecta, we have Swedish sad-pop queen Tove Lo. After scoring the best song of last year, Tove has gone back to her songwriting roots and seems to be everyone's go-to feature girl at the moment. Years & Years "Desire" is finally made a 10/10 thanks to her contribution and Nick Jonas's "Close" is shooting up the charts thanks to her teaming up with hitmakers Julia Michaels, Justin Tranter, and Mattman & Robin. She is also a part of that really great Flume song. It also seems like she is featuring on the new Broods album, which we can all agree is very exciting. This all serves to hopefully bring her back into the public eye in order to give us album number 2 before the year is out, so get ready for that!
Only Beyoncé would be able to out-Beyoncé Beyoncé. The new album not only possesses great music, but the pop cultural phenomenon that the album has generated just signifies that we are all living in Bey's world.
6. Ariana Grande
I kind of always thought Ariana Grande would hit her stride by the time her third album came around. This was made very apparent by "Dangerous Woman", which remains Ariana's most compelling single to date. After a bunch of buzz tracks that vary from a 6/10 to a 9/10, we have another 10/10 single in the form of "Into You". It sounds like a bunch of really great electronic pop songs thrown together randomly but remains a catchy pop hit in every way. The new album is really gonna blow us away, isn't it?
7. TEN Music Group
There is so much amazingness coming out of TEN Music Group that it would be hard to sum it up in this post. So instead, just know that almost every single amazing Swedish single of the year so far has had TEN Music Group's fingers all over it. Get ready for a full post on all of their amazing artists but just know that it would be a great career move for any Swedish pop artist to sign with them.
Keep updated with them on Twitter, it's worth it.