Wednesday, September 20, 2017

DrogeMiester's Billboard Analysis - September 30, 2017

The new Billboard charts have arrived and so it's time again for me to give you my thoughts! In this weekly post, I cover three sections. First, I give my thoughts on the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Second, I give my thoughts on the songs that experienced significant gains below the top 10. Third, I give my initial thoughts on our new arrivals this week. I reserve the right to switch things up in the future, but for now this is what I'm sticking with. I've followed the Billboard charts for a long time now and this is a great way for me to express my thoughts to the world. I hope you enjoy!

Billboard Hot 100 Top 10:

1- "Look What You Made Me Do" - Taylor Swift (=) -- A third week for Taylor at the top, but her sales and streaming continue to tank. She has 69,000 sales, down 39 percent and 39.9 million U.S. streams, down 35 percent. Radio rises to an audience of 75 million, which is up 11 percent and is probably going to be the metric that keeps her around. But I'm suddenly starting to doubt if this is a song that's going to stick around for as long as I thought it would, given what decently average songs like "Despacito" and "Shape of You" accomplished. In fact, Taylor doesn't lead in any of the three aforementioned categories, which sometimes happens when one song is balanced enough to get enough points while the other songs are super lopsided towards one specific category. With this week, Sam Smith got a buttload of first week sales, Cardi B ruled on streaming, while radio is madly in love with Charlie Puth for some annoying reason. But none of those songs are doing well at all in the other categories, so Taylor gets a third week at No. 1. But I wonder how long it's going to last.

2- "Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)" - Cardi B (=) -- One would think that Cardi B would be in line to jump to the top if Taylor continues to tank. The problem is the song doesn't seem to want the crown. It also tanked on sales and streaming, albeit slightly less than Taylor in the latter category, thus gaining the top spot on streaming. And radio has never really done anything for the song. Rightfully so. No one needs to hear this poisonous monstrosity in their ears. I still don't know why it's here or why it ever got this high in the first place. I'm just waiting for it to collapse and die.

3- "1-800-273-8255" - Logic featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid (+2) -- Meanwhile, continuing to be an extremely pleasant surprise, Logic takes his suicide prevention song up even further on the charts to No. 3 thanks to continued solid gains in streaming and radio, even if sales are going the wrong direction. Wouldn't it be so awesome if this wound up being our No. 1 song? I would love that. As is, it's now the highest charting song for all three of these artists. Good for them!

4- "Despacito" - Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber (-1) -- I don't know if I have that much more to say about "Despacito." It had it's time in the spotlight. A really long time in the spotlight. Now I'm just wondering if this is just going to be a weird fad that we experienced in 2017 or if this song will actually be remembered 10 years from now. Actual Latino countries might continue to remember the original version while here in America I think we'll quickly forget that this Bieber remix ever existed.

5- "Too Good at Goodbyes" - Sam Smith (new) -- Man, I love this song. And I'm super happy it debuted in the top five. Well deserved for Sam Smith. Now it's going to experience a second week drop and disappear from the top 10, but I really hope that it ends up gaining traction and becomes the fall hit. More on this song down below in the new arrivals section. But if you're curious, the song arrives with 90,000 first week sales with streaming and radio numbers that I really hope catches up.

6- "Wild Thoughts" - DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna & Bryson Tiller (=) -- DJ Khaled and is gang stay at No. 6 this week. Shame. It deserves to fall faster. Make it happen America!

7- "Unforgettable" - French Montana featuring Swae Lee (+2) -- Oh hey! Here's a pleasant surprise! I was hoping that "Unforgettable" would hang on a bit longer and rise above the other songs that are falling out of the top 10. And it actually happened. America is finally starting to reject Charlie Puth and Imagine, who never belonged in the top 10 with their current songs.

8- "Attention" - Charlie Puth (-1) -- But for some reason, as I previously mentioned, Charlie Puth is king of radio right now. Radio stations need to give up their love affair with Charlie Puth and start playing songs that actually deserve to be played on the radio. It's one of those times where I'm glad the speakers on my car don't  work.

9- "Believer" - Imagine Dragons (-1) -- That's right. Get the fetch out of here Dan Reynolds. And take your boring rock song and bland rock band with you. Go back to the drawing board and come up with something good. Because none of this nonsense you've brought us with your third album is deserving of this amount of praise. And it pains me to say that because I was once a huge fan.

10- "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" - Shawn Mendes (=) -- Why? I thought we were done with Shawn Mendes last week. I'm angry that he's hung in for one more week. Heck, I was angry that he showed up in the top 10 in the first place, but I'm really angry that he hasn't yet left.

Rising on the Hot 100:

11- "Slow Hands" - Niall Horan (+4) -- I don't really find this song that entertaining. It's kind of a boring song that you would expect from one of the lesser 1D members who has been left all alone. But man, if it means kicking out Charlie Puth, Imagine Dragons and/or Shawn Mendes, I will accept this with open arms. For a few weeks. Then it needs to go because it mainly puts me to sleep and makes me upset that the talented 1D members aren't finding success.

12- "Strip that Down" - Liam Payne featuring Quavo (+2) -- But hey, at least this song left the top 10. I can only hope that it stays out, because we don't need to encourage Liam to write songs like this. And we certainly don't need anymore Quavo in our lives.

14- "Feel it Still" - Portugal. The Man (+4) -- This, on the other hand, gets me super excited and giddy. In a year that's been mostly boring and dull in the top 10, wouldn't it be absolutely fantastic if we actually got a super good song that's much different from our usual affair to cross over into the top 10? I'm pulling for this! And I beg of you to buy it and/or stream it so that it can make the cut!

19- "Mi Gente" - J Balvin & Willy William (+3) -- J Balvin has finally cracked the top 20 with "Mi Gente" after being stuck in the 20's for several weeks. I'm honestly curious if this is heading to replace "Despacito" in the top 10 because it's slowly rising while "Despacito" slowly falls. If "Mi Gente" does crack top 10, I will be super impressed because that will mean it's a Latino song that managed to crack the top 10 WITHOUT an English remix. If it doesn't crack the top 10 and simply peaks here in the teens, well, I won't be super upset. It's had a good run that I'm satisfied with.

24- "I Get the Bag" - Gucci Mane featuring Migos (+7) -- NO! So much no!! Get these thugs out of here and send their awful song with them. Please don't let this be our next rap entry into the top 10.

26- "Young Dumb & Broke" - Khalid (+7) -- Khalid now has a top three hit thanks to Logic. Now can he get another entry into the top 10 completely on his own? I wouldn't be surprised. This seems like the song that the radio would fall in love with. And I won't be upset if it does. This kid certainly has a lot more talent and song writing abilities than that of Charlie Puth and Shawn Mendes. Combined. But I also won't be upset if this gets stuck around this region. It's alright and inoffensive, but not the best.

32- "What Ifs" - Kane Brown featuring Lauren Alaina (+8) -- We've almost arrived to the point in our lives where "Body Like a Back Road" is no longer the top country song. "What Ifs" is SO close to finally dethroning it. This isn't necessarily the country song that I would pick to take the title, but there could also be a whole lot worse.

40- "Thunder" - Imagine Dragons (+5) -- I keep expecting "Thunder" to start rising on the charts while crossing my fingers that it continues to stall out. It's suffered from a lot of indecisiveness. As if people can't decide if they want to accept it because of its awesome beat or reject it due to its completely lifeless and empty lyrics. I'm kinda hoping for the latter. Especially since I'm currently hoping all of Imagine Dragons' music just burns and dies. "Night Visions" just seems like such a long time ago.

47- "Unforgettable" - Thomas Rhett (+16) -- I still start singing French Montana's version of this song when I see this rising. Thomas Rhett has never been able to connect this song to my mind. This song being so forgettable is pretty bad.

71- "Bad at Love" - Halsey (+10) -- No time to panic yet. Halsey's new song hasn't broke top 70. But if this continues to rise, I will start complaining. Yes, I want more female representation. But I'd rather have GOOD female representation, not whatever this is.

New Arrivals:

5- "Too Good at Goodbyes" - Sam Smith -- I don't want to get too personal with this song, because I'm not intending on getting sympathy from readers and friends after they read this, but if you want to know how I'm feeling right now when it comes to my love life and relationships, this is the song to listen to. I was intrigued when I saw Sam Smith releasing a new song because the man genuinely has an excellent voice and fantastic writing abilities, but I kid you not, the second I started playing this, especially after knowing what the title was, it instantaneously connected with me. And the more I've listened to it, the more I've found that it connects with me on every level. Because it's my story about how I feel. About this song, Sam Smith said that he wanted to update everyone on his love life, which he admits still sucks and that sadly states that he is very single. At least when he wrote the song. Which, yeah, guess what? Same here.

Check out these lyrics, "I'm never going to let you close to me, even though you mean the most to me, 'cause every time I open up, it hurts. So I'm never going to get too close to you, even when I mean the most to you, in case you go and leave me in the dirt."

Or how about this, "I know you think I'm heartless. I know you think I'm cold. I'm just protectin' my innocence. I'm just protecting my soul."

Yep. I can just leave it at that. Not to mention the man's voice in the song is beyond beautiful and the music behind this sad love ballad is perfect. And I certainly have to give kudos to Sam Smith for being openly gay, yet perfect at writing love songs that connect with people regardless of their sexual orientation. Not that I would be upset at a love song specifically for people who are homosexual. Halsey did it with "Strangers" and I had zero problem with that aspect of the song. I just find it impressive that Sam can write a song that connects with all people. And do you know what Sam, for the sake of me and you both, I hope we each find the lover that we are looking for. Because, yeah, dating sucks. But it'll get better. Hopefully. In the meantime, using music to express what's honestly on your mind is something that I have a lot of respect for.

44- "Dusk Till Dawn" - Zayn featuring Sia -- Horse manure with a side of ice cream served for dinner? The idea of this song is so strange. We combine the efforts of the least talented member of 1D with perhaps my favorite female vocalist. It just doesn't seem right. Like me trying to country dance. But what would win out when I played the actual song? Zayn or Sia? Well, neither. Which makes me more conflicted. This isn't just Sia thrown in as an after thought with a third verse feature or something. For much of the song they are singing together. And Zayn sounds so lazy and bored while Sia sounds like she's doing her best to make the most out of these Zayn-y lyrics. Think of any song Zayn has ever written while off on his own and this is no better. He just wants to get together with this girl, not for the sake of love and relationships, but for her body and for the opportunity to sleep with her. But Sia puts a lot of emotion into anyways and almost sells it, but is held back by Zayn just trudging along with her, singing the song as lazily as he wrote it. Everyone once in a while he breaks out and channels his inner Sia, showing the world that he actually has a good voice. But then he goes back to his normal lazy self. So yeah, I don't know what to do with this.

62- "Love So Soft" - Kelly Clarkson -- Speaking of being conflicted, this new song from Kelly also sends me in so many different directions. Except this time around, it's just Kelly as opposed to Zayn and Sia combining to stretch me in different directions. Simply put, Kelly has a lot of fire and soul that she puts into the verses of this song that I really love. Then we slam on the brakes during the chorus, giving me whiplash as I'm suddenly subjected to a chorus that is perhaps the most boring and lazy chorus that Kelly has ever written, both in terms of the boring lyrics and the one-note music, which she ends with an annoying squeak. If the whole song were like the verses, then I think I would love this. But it's not. So I don't. I'm still intrigued by her upcoming album, though. The song "Move You," the other song she's released, is genuinely good. And if she's going soul, I hold out hope there are some good soul songs hidden in there. But it's a swing and a miss for me on the lead-off single. And you shouldn't be too shocked. Outside "Never Again" and "Catching My Breath," I haven't been impressed with a Kelly song since she released her album "Breakaway."

73- "I'll Name the Dogs" - Blake Shelton -- So Sam Smith is opening up to us that his love life sucks. Zayn, Sia and Kelly are doing... something. And Blake Shelton is busy naming dogs. OK, whatever Blake. I just hoped he was being literal with this and not referring to something else. Which thankfully he is being literal. He's saying that he's ready to marry this girl and he says that she can name the babies and he'll name the dogs. This after he lists off a whole bunch of stereotypical man/woman roles that they can do. I don't want to say this is being misogynistic or sexist, because it's not. But stereotypical is a good word. He can go do all his stereotypical guy things and she can do all the stereotypical girl things and they can live happily ever after in their boring, cliche country life. I will give Blake some credit for having more of a groove than he usually does, but I just had my eyebrow cocked the whole time while listening in a state of bored confusion. I don't connect with this at all and I don't know how people can. But whatever.

80- "Found You" - Kane Brown -- While Kane is currently shooting up the charts with "What Ifs," which is poised to take the top spot on the country charts, he also sneaks in this. I will say that this is less baffling and weird than Blake's song, we have our typical, guy meets girl country song from Kane. This time guy is in a bar, missing his girl, when guy's friend drags him out to a party guy doesn't want to go to where guy meets girl and is now happy. And I'm sure if we told the next part of this story it would be a lather, rinse, repeat sort of situation. Kudos for being original, Kane. NOT. Throw in your typical non-country country rock stuff and we got ourselves a 2017 country song.

81- "Gucci Gang" - Lil Pump -- Lil Pump? Are we for real? Lil Wayne made sense as a rapper name. Lil Uzi Vert didn't and neither did Lil Yachty. Now we have another Lil joining the group with the dumbest name of them all. Lil Pump. Like seriously, who comes up with these? And why? It just sounds like a rapper name that a 12-year-old punk kid would give himself when he's trying to be cool... shortly after learning that he can swear. Oh, you want me to talk about this song? OK. It sucks. This whatever the heck he is does everything I hate about modern club rappers. Trying to feed off Migos while repeating his horrible title over and over in between talking about sleeping with women, including his teacher, while doing drugs, selling drugs, not caring about relationships. Just fame, fortune, drugs and sex. And we're encouraging this punk to keep going. Ouch. I hate 2017 sometimes. I hope this dies.

85- "No Limit" - G-Eazy featuring A$AP Rocky & Cardi B -- Who gave these three permission to get together and write a song? Granted, I'll take this over whatever that Lil Pump song was, but that's not saying too much. Also, to be fair to G-Eazy, I haven't hated the stuff that he's done. He just kinda bores me. When he teams up with someone talented, it's tolerable. But when he teams up like this, it's not. I don't like anyone who puts a dollar sign in their name these days and I hate how we have two Nicki Minajes corrupting the music industry. Again, slight credit goes to this song having more of a flow and bounce than some rap songs. But the content is the same boring, awful rap stuff. Listening to these words doesn't please my ears.

98- "Pills and Automobiles" - Chris Brown featuring Yo Gotti, A Boogie wit da Hoodie & Kodak Black -- Speaking of people that shouldn't get together, what in the heck is happening here? An awful rapper combined with a boring rapper combined with the rapper that has the world's worst name combined with another awful rapper. No way this works out. Haven't we all learned by now that Chris Brown can't rap and can't write good songs? And auto-tuning his voice while bringing in all his friends isn't going to help anything. He starts this song by repeating the word wet 14 times. And that sets the tone for the rest of the song because you know exactly what's going to happen.

99- "Let Me Go" - Hailee Steinfeld & Alesso featuring Florida Georgia Line & watt -- Well that's a mouthful to type up and try to digest. Hailee the pop singer, Alesso the EDM artist, Florida Georgia Line the country duo and watt the guitarist. So let me break this down for you. This is Hailee being desperate. Because that's what she's turned into in regards to her music career. A desperate pop singer. In this song, she's singing a boring breakup song that we've heard a thousand times, but somehow she convinced Florida Georgia Line to come in a do a quick verse while letting Alesso and watt take care of all the music and instrumentation behind her. Hailee isn't bad in this. Her voice is good. But she has so much potential that I feel she is just wasting right now. And if you're going to bring in a country duo, then commit to it. They're barely in the song. Their only purpose is to add a name to the song to get sales because they certainly add nothing to the song. Alesso and watt do fine with the production, but Alesso being one of my favorite EDM artists has done much better. If this was a head-banging Alesso song that uses Hailee's voice, then I'd be totally down with this. But that's not what it is. This is boring and desperate where no one involved seemed like they really cared.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

DrogeMiester's Billboard Analysis - September 23, 2017

The new Billboard charts have arrived and so it's time again for me to give you my thoughts! In this weekly post, I cover three sections. First, I give my thoughts on the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Second, I give my thoughts on the songs that experienced significant gains below the top 10. Third, I give my initial thoughts on our new arrivals this week. I reserve the right to switch things up in the future, but for now this is what I'm sticking with. I've followed the Billboard charts for a long time now and this is a great way for me to express my thoughts to the world. I hope you enjoy!

Billboard Hot 100 Top 10:

1- "Look What You Made Me Do" - Taylor Swift (=) -- In Taylor's second week at the top of the charts, she nosedives pretty sharply in both streaming and sales, but that's to be expected after a huge debut. But despite the expected second full week dip, she still collected 114,000 sales and 61.2 million streams. And radio, which is always the metric slowest to catch up, jumped from 64 million in audience last week to 72 million this week. The big question will be where does the song go from here? Is it going to keep falling and fade away or will it recapture some traction and stay in this spot for 10+ weeks? Personally I don't mind if either happened. I like the song and am fine with it being here, but I won't be offended if we did more sharing with this spot.

2- "Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)" - Cardi B (+1) -- Don't be deceived with this song rising to the No. 2 spot. There's not a competition between Cardi B and Taylor for the top spot. Not yet, anyways. Cardi B is getting a whole ton of streaming with this song, but radio and sales are pretty much dead. I'm guessing this stays at No. 2 and never gets to No. 1. Or maybe that's what I'm hoping will happen.

3- "Despacito" - Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber (-1) -- If Taylor never swept in, "Despacito" would've ended its reign at the top with a record-breaking 17 weeks and given way to Cardi B. I'm certainly grateful that the latter didn't happen and I'm totally fine with Mariah and Boyz II Men only having to share their crown as opposed to giving it up completely.

4- "...Ready for It?" - Taylor Swift (new) -- This I didn't actually expect to hit top five. But what it says is that when the album is released, you'll definitely know my opinion on this blog because I imagine every song will make an appearance. As is the norm for Taylor, actually. Hence is why I think she has the record for most Hot 100 entries for a female. Also, with Taylor having two concurrent top five hits, she is the first artist to do it since... herself back in February 2015 with "Blank Space" and "Shake it Off." With Taylor's two songs and Cardi B's song, this is also the first time since December 2014 that we've had three solo women as lead artists in the top five. With Taylor and Cardi at the top two spots, its the first time solo women have occupied the top two spots concurrently since that same December 2014 weekend. This needs to happen more often. I don't know why we don't accept female singers today as much as we do male singers, but we need to. And I'm not trying to be politically correct here. I just like female singers and I want them to get more hits. Finally, my opinion on this song will be below.

5- "1-800-273-8255" - Logic featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid (+4) -- I was under the impression last week that this would be a one week appearance in the top 10 following the VMA performance of the song. But man, I am so happy to see this song rising up to the top five. It's slipping on sales, so I don't know how long it will be here, but I hope that streaming and radio can keep this alive because a song that helps people with suicidal thoughts get help definitely deserves praise.

6- "Wild Thoughts" - DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna & Bryson Tiller (-2) -- The rest of these songs all seem to be on their way out. They all are losing momentum and they all dropped two spots. Now we're just waiting for new songs to replace them. Quite frankly I'm glad that this one never hit No. 1. And I hope it fizzles out and dies as fast as DJ Khaled's other song, "I'm the One," once that song FINALLY dropped out of the top five.

7- "Attention" - Charlie Puth (-2) -- I've never been a fan of this song. Boring pop song from a boring white guy writing generic lyrics. I'm glad that it's heading out.

8- "Believer" - Imagine Dragons (-2) -- I'm also glad that Imagine Dragons is heading out. They're a lot of good rock songs around. Let's bring a good one into the top 10 and not another bland one like this. And for the love of all things good, let's keep "Thunder" FAR AWAY from the top 10.

9- "Unforgettable" - French Montana featuring Swae Lee (-2) -- This is the song that I'd actually like to recover and get ahead of all these songs. I wanted it to last longer. Oh well. Life goes on.

10- "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" - Shawn Mendes (-2) -- Can we please get rid of Shawn Mendes next week? That would make me so happy!!

Rising on the Hot 100:

11- "Rake it Up" - Yo Gotti featuring Nicki Minaj (+2) -- We have a decent slate of rising songs due to all of the atrocious XXXTENTACION and Lil Uzi Vert songs tanking or dropping out as the Hot 100 resets itself back to normal. This is not a song effected by that as the highest as the highest debut from those two thugs was No. 31. But I say that just so you know why some of the other songs jumped so high. "Rake it Up" jumped into the top 10 a few weeks ago after the music video, then it thankfully dropped out. And now it looks like its slowly back on its way in. I just hope it sputters out here at No. 11 or doesn't stay very long because no one on earth needs this atrocity.

13- "Sorry Not Sorry" - Demi Lovato (+5) -- Speaking of female singers, let's get Demi into the top 10! I would've preferred it if it were "Tell Me You Love Me" soaring up, but I'll take this. It might be an average Demi song, but it's worthy of replacing one of our dumb songs that are falling out.

18- "Feel it Still" - Portugal. The Man (+2) -- I am so addicted to this song. Happy to see it slowly rising. I would love it if the top 10 were its final destination, but I fear it might get stuck here in the teens. But even so, I'm happy that it got this high.

27- "What Lovers Do" - Maroon 5 featuring SZA (+46) -- This was expected. First full week of sales cause a major boost. I'm not offended by this song. If you missed my thoughts on it last week in the midst of all the crap from the aforementioned thugs, this is catchy and groovy enough for me to say whatever and not be brokenhearted, but its still a bland, boring Maroon 5 song. I wish Adam Levine would reach back into the past and learn from his older self how to write good music.

31- "I Get the Bag" - Gucci Mane featuring Migos (+11) -- Dog crap with a side of horse manure. We did we let this song get all the way up to No. 31?

44- "The Race" - Tay-K (+20) -- And who in the living fetch is streaming and selling this atrocity? If you are one of them, cancel your subscription to whatever streaming service you listen to, delete all of your music and never listen to a song again. You have lost all your rights and privileges to music.

46- "Transportin'" - Kodak Black (+11) -- You know, I really wish all of these XXX and Lil Uzi songs were replaced by actual good music, not any of this trash.

48- "When it Rains it Pours" - Luke Combs (+8) -- Hey, it's not an awful rap song rising! It's a boring country song instead. Joy...

69- "B.E.D." - Jacquees (+17) -- I spoke too soon. It's time to start panicking here because this seems like it's going top 50 and I have no idea why.

73- "Havana" - Camila Cabello featuring Young Thug (+10) -- Heck, I'll take this one over those others. Even if we do have Young Thug. Practically a masterpiece compared to our previous five songs.

76- "They Don't Know" - Jason Aldean (+13) -- More bland country music getting popular.

78- "Every Little Thing" - Carly Pearce (+15) -- FINALLY!!!!! Did I have to wait all the way until No. 78 to get a song rising that's worthy of rising?

82- "More Girls Like You" - Kip Moore (+16) -- TWO IN A ROW!!!!

83- "It Ain't My Fault" - Brothers Osborne (+17) -- THREE IN A ROW!!!!!!

84- "Wish I Knew" - The Revivalists (+12) -- FOUR IN A ROW!!!!! Now can we please replace these previous songs with the other duds that are rising instead? Why can't we accept good music in this country?

New Arrivals:

4- "...Ready for It?" - Taylor Swift -- Now this is more like the Taylor we're all used to. I would contend this is a lot closer to the stuff from "Red" and "1989" than it is to "Look What You Made Me Do." Taylor doing her typical romance songs instead of a bitter diss track. Makes me think that "Look What You Made Me Done" was released first to get people's attention while the whole album won't quite be like that. But we'll see on November 10. This certainly has me intrigued because, while the lyrics are more simple and generic about her essentially crushing after a guy, the thing that makes it most unique is that there is a strong electronic vibe to it. This is practically a straight up EDM song from Taylor. The type of thing that I was hoping would be released when her and Calvin Harris were a thing. Perhaps I'm biased because I love EDM, but I think this is a sound that works for Taylor. I really wanted that Calvin Harris/Taylor Swift collaboration because I envisioned what Taylor's voice would sound like with that EDM backdrop and I liked what I envisioned. Now I feel like I got it with this song. This even has a pretty good drop that should get people excited at parties. In fact, if you take the "Let the games begin" segment of the pre-chorus out of context, this would also make a great stadium song. So yeah, I really enjoy this, even though the lyrics don't jump out at me.

77- "These Heaux" - Bhad Bhabie -- Remember that one girl from the viral Dr. Phil video who said the phrase "Cash me ousside how bow dah" and how some insane person remixed it into a song that ACTUALLY debuted on the Billboard charts? Well, she's back. And this time with an actual song and not a remix of a song from something that she said. Her name is Danielle Bregoli. But she's calling herself Bhad Bhabie. A wretchedly awful name from a punk 14-year-old girl that no one should be paying any attention to. If you watched the actual video clip that got turned into a remixed viral hit, then you'll know how annoying this girl is and you'll know how awful it would be if she released a song. And yeah, it's as bad as you would think. From the moment you see the word "heaux" and realize it's just a purposely misspelled version of "hoes," you know you're in for a doozy. She doesn't want to be compared to "these hoes" who do some awful stuff. This girl has no ounce of talent in her and is nothing but controversy. Can we please not give her a stage like this? I hope this is gone next week and that nothing else from her ever debuts on the charts again.

81- "Bad at Love" - Halsey -- Despite me not being madly in love with Halsey's "Now or Never," I actually listened to her whole album when it came out because the girl has potential and I was wanting to see if I could salvage anything from the album. And I could. There were some decent songs on there like "Eyes Closed," "Sorry," "Good Morning" and "Devil in Me." But "Bad at Love" wasn't one of them. Granted, it's not an awful song. And I do appreciate the self-awareness with Halsey claiming she's bad at love and the problems with her relationship are probably her fault. Not enough of that going around. But the song as a whole is just lackluster and uninteresting. Halsey doesn't display any vocal talent. There's no strong melody that sticks in your head. To me it just seemed like a song Halsey quickly threw together to fill space on the album and now for some reason has decided to release as a single.

86- "Greatest Love Story" - LANco -- The greatest love story? Well that's a lofty title to live up to. But I suppose when you're talking to the girl you want to marry, it's right to think that the two of you are going to be the greatest love story the world has ever seen. This here is a simple, acoustic love ballad from a country ballad that I've never heard of where our lead singer tells a detailed story of him and his high school sweetheart. They were perfect for each other, but then she went off to college and their lives went in different directions. After the first two verses, the chorus is in past tense as he's singing that "we were going to be the greatest love story." But TWIST. She comes back after four years and the final chorus is in present tense. They go on a date again. They find there are mutual feelings still. So he buys a ring and proposes to her and she says... well, we'll never know. The song leaves us on a cliffhanger. Overall not a country song that I'll play for my friends when I brag about the good country songs I found hidden on the Billboard charts this year, but it's not bad.

97- "Sky Walker" - Miguel featuring Travis Scott -- Yes. Miguel is rapping about Star Wars. Kinda. I think he's trying to be clever here by using the play on Star Wars by calling his song "Sky Walker" instead of "Skywalker." And since he's a big Star Wars fan, he has decided to throw in a line saying that's he's just having fun and "Luke Skywalkin' on his haters." So he's turned Luke into a verb. And I'm not really sure how this metaphor fits into his song and I don't know exactly what he's meaning. We've also got some "Top Gun" in there with Tom Cruise, so he's being super clever with his movie references used as boring rap metaphors in his boring rap song filled with plenty of Migos sound effects that had me annoyed and a useless feature from Travis Scott, who doesn't sound too different from Miguel. If you're not paying attention, you might miss him. The song is also too long (4:20) for how little content there is. Maybe he should've used some actual creativity and shaved a whole minute off the song. It could've been fine. Miguel is better than XXX and Lil Uzi and certainly better than that Danielle girl. But I'm not giving this a pass.

100- "No Fear" - DeJ Loaf -- For some reason I see the name DeJ Loaf and I feel I should be more familiar with this girl. But I'm not. My first thought was intrigue that we're getting a female rapper not named Cardi B or Nicki Minaj who actually sounded like she hand talent. At least the internet listed her as a rapper. I don't know what her previous material is like and I don't really care to know, but this isn't rap. I suppose you could call it R&B if you wanted, but this is more like a simple pop song. In fact, this reminds me of a young, toned-down Rihanna. It's a love song kinda similar to LANco's "Greatest Love Song" that I just covered. But it's simpler than that, yet seems to have a lot more sincerity to it. DeJ Loaf is singing from the heart that she really cares for her lover and she wants them to be together, despite the tough challenges that life is throwing their way. But if they do their best to ignore all of the stuff happening around them, she knows they can make. It's simple, yet sincere and I really enjoy it. I didn't know what to expect from this, but I was pleasantly surprised.

Friday, September 8, 2017

DrogeMiester's Billboard Analysis - September 16, 2017

The new Billboard charts have arrived and so it's time again for me to give you my thoughts! In this weekly post, I cover three sections. First, I give my thoughts on the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Second, I give my thoughts on the songs that experienced significant gains below the top 10. Third, I give my initial thoughts on our new arrivals this week. I reserve the right to switch things up in the future, but for now this is what I'm sticking with. I've followed the Billboard charts for a long time now and this is a great way for me to express my thoughts to the world. I hope you enjoy!

Billboard Hot 100 Top 10:

1- "Look What You Made Me Do" - Taylor Swift (+76) -- Taylor fails to debut at No. 1 because three days of radio play alone got the song to debut at No. 77 last week, but I'm sure she won't lose too much sleep over that. After its first full week, Taylor got 350,000 sales, 80 million streams and 64 million in radio audience. That sales mark is the highest this year. The streaming is the most ever for a female artist. And that much radio in one week is pretty great, although I don't think that sets any records. If you were hoping this song was going to go away because you're one who hates, your remaining 2017 is gonna be miserable because this isn't going anywhere. Taylor also becomes the first female to hit No. 1 without a male since Adele's "Hello." The only other female to be No. 1 in any capacity this year is Halsey as featured on The Chainsmokers' "Closer." Personally I'm glad to get some more female representation.

2- "Despacito" - Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber  (-1) -- After 16 weeks at No. 1, "Despacito" falls to No. 2, thus failing to break the record. And it's confirmed. Had Taylor not swung in, "Despacito" would be king. Not that that means anything. Now the question is how long can this song stay in the top 10? Radio and sales are slipping, but streaming is still really good, so I imagine this will hang around.

3- "Bodak Yellow (Money Moves) - Cardi B (=) -- Our Nicki Minaj wannabe passes Rihanna, but gets passed by Taylor, so she stays at No. 3. I'm not complaining. But hey, three females in the top five. That's a good thing.

4- "Wild Thoughts" - DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna & Bryson Tiller (-2) -- Let the fall begin! I'm so glad Rihanna failed to get another No. 1. She didn't deserve it. Now lets hope this song tumbles and dies. But sadly that radio will probably keep it around.

5- "Attention" - Charlie Puth (=) -- Charlie flips with Imagine Dragons to stay put in the top five. Not sure how I feel about that. I don't want either song in the top five, so I suppose I'm happy one of them is gone.

6- "Believer" - Imagine Dragons (-2) -- Imagine Dragons tumbled two spots this week. That's good! Now let's get this out!

7- "Unforgettable" - French Montana featuring Swae Lee (-1) -- I'd actually be happy if this jumped ahead of Charlie and Imagine Dragons. But that probably won't happen.

8- "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" - Shawn Mendes (-1) -- Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars BOTH left the top 10 this week. That makes me happy. Now can this song be next?

9- "1-800-273-8255" - Logic featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid (+20) -- Well here's a pleasant surprise. I knew this song was jumping up because of the VMA's, but I didn't expect a top 10 entry. I couldn't be happier, though. As I say each week with this song, say want you want about the musicality of the song, the purpose here was to get people to call the suicide hotline and it's worked. That's worthy of praise.

10- "Strip that Down" - Liam Payne featuring Quavo (+1) -- I mean, I'm glad Ed and Bruno are gone. But did we have to replace it with this? Liam is very much the lesser of the former 1Ders. Why does he have to be the one gaining traction on the charts?

Rising on the Hot 100:

14- "Humble." - Kendrick Lamar (+5) -- This gets a welcome boost due to Kendrick destroying it at the VMA's, which is the big story line this week. The VMA's.

16- "XO TOUR Llif3" - Lil Uzi Vert (+9) -- This isn't VMA's. This is because Lil Uzi Vert's new album impacted the charts this week. 10 new Uzi songs to cover. Yay...

20- "Feel it Still" - Portugal. The Man (+3) -- I'm so happy to see this break top 20! I really love this song and I'm glad a good song is finding mainstream success.

28- "What About Us" - P!nk  (+7) -- It would've been nice if this jumped into the top 10 as well. Word is P!nk gave one of the night's best performances at The VMA's. But hey, I'll take this rising in some form. Let's just get it going a bit faster please?

32- "Young Dumb & Broke" - Khalid (+9) -- Khalid won best new artist. I suppose I can get behind that. But he didn't perform this song, so this is just rising naturally.

45- "Thunder" - Imagine Dragons (+14) -- Can we please reject this before it gets too high? It's making me nervous that this won't go away. Imagine Dragons need to learn to write good music like they used to. Not this boring, bland new stuff.

55- "Transportin'" - Kodak Black (+27) -- Why?

83- "Havana" - Camila Cabello (+11) -- I suppose I'm not upset at this. No. 83 is not very high, anyways. I'm curious to see if Camilla can actually conjure up a genuine solo hit.

New Arrivals:

31- "Jocelyn Flores" - XXXTENTACION -- We've got seven songs from XXXTENTACION and 10 songs from Lil Uzi Vert this week. And I despise both of these rappers. So let's get these over with. If you're curious, there's three "real" songs hidden at No. 73, No. 76 and No. 97 if you're curious to check out those. We begin with XXXTENTACION, a thug from prison who has done nothing but cause controversy and misery since being released. Why are we making him a thing? And who is Jocelyn Flores? A girl that... oh. Committed suicide. Suddenly I have to change my mindset and be sensitive about this instead of hateful. XXX is rapping about a girl he knew who committed suicide and how much misery he's been in ever since. That's real and that I appreciate. There's actual emotion in this song. I was rather shocked. It's a short anthem from XXX, under two minutes, where XXX has one quick verse where he flies through his emotions and it's surround by a slow chorus about how much pain he's in. Now if only XXX would put this type of emotion into all his songs...

39- "The Way Life Goes" - Lil Uzi Vert -- My order with this list is that I listened to all of XXX's songs and then all of Lil Uzi's. You'll notice that XXX's album is more of a depressing suicide note disguised as an album. And all the songs are really short. Thus I switch to Lil Uzi and was impressed that he wrote a full-length song that was nearly four minutes long. But then I got bored because I was used to only having to spend two minutes with each song. We start our 10-song Uzi marathon with a boring song essentially about Uzi sleeping with a girl, being upset that she left with him, but then deciding that the new girl he's now going to sleep with is better, while still being bitter about the old girl leaving him. But the new girl is going to appreciate his fame and riches more. Yawn. Give me something worth something that hasn't been done a thousand times before.

41- "F--- Love" - XXXTENTACION featuring Trippie Redd -- Can XXX impress me again after surprising me with "Jocelyn Flores"? Well, no. But this song isn't awful. It's just a really slow rap song that's barely rap. It's barely over two minutes and most of it is Trippie Redd begging the girl to switch sides. In the middle of that begging, XXX throws in a quick verse about how he's feeling nauseous and awful without her. That's all. Simple, short kinda rap song with not much to it. So let's go onto the next one.

49- "Sauce it Up" - Lil Uzi Vert -- No, we're not going to get anything better from Lil Uzi, are we? Instead we are just going to "sauce it up." And yes, it means exactly what you think it means. 20 seconds in, Lil Uzi says that "I'm one of the greatest to ever do it." What a horrible, cocky punk. I hate attitudes like that. So I quit the song. And read the rest of the lyrics. It wasn't getting any better. How can anyone like this type of snobbish, awful rap music. I don't understand.

54- "Everybody Dies in Their Nightmares" - XXXTENTACION -- Another song from XXX that's super short? This one barely cracks 90 seconds. How long is this album? *goes and looks* 11 songs. 21 minutes. Wow. Did XXX write this whole album in one day? I mean, I often joke around about rappers not putting much time into an album. But this time I actually think it might be true. Oh well. Makes my life easy. XXX here spends 95 seconds repeating over and over how he wants to die in his dreams because he can't handle the pain. He does get a lot of words out in those 95 seconds, but most of it is the same three lines repeated over and over. Maybe it's just me, but I prefer actual songs and not small snippets of someone venting. But apparently my definition of music and the rest of America's is different because this is what charted this week.

60- "444+222" - Lil Uzi Vert -- This Lil Uzi song just had me confused. What does 444+222 mean? I listened to the song, read the lyrics, read the potential meanings and I still don't know. That total equals 666, the sign of the beast. He also references JAY Z in the song right after repeating eight straight 4's. JAY Z's album was "4:44." What's going on there? I don't know. I don't care. And the lyrics make no sense. Although there's a decent flow in some of the verses. That's the best I can say about this one. He doesn't even say the number two at all, despite it being in his title. Whatever, Uzi.

73- "What Lovers Do" - Maroon 5 featuring SZA -- There was a time in life where I actually enjoyed Maroon 5. But that time seems so long ago. And I don't actively hate the band, if you can even call them a band at this point, but I just get so bored with their music. Adam Levine just seems so desperate to get hits that he'll follow whatever the current trend is while being so lazy and shallow with his lyrics. I think he even knows that his songs will all be long forgotten in 10 years from now. People will still remember songs like "She Will Be Loved" or "Harder to Breathe," but none of this current garbage. Now in fairness, "What Lovers Do" actually has a decently catchy groove to it and I actually have a chance of remembering it tomorrow, something I literally couldn't do with "Cold." Like, no joke or exaggeration. I couldn't remember it the next day. I kept singing Bieber's "Cold Water" instead. The problem with "What Lovers Do" is the same problem with most of his recent music. It's empty. Meaningless. Practically lifeless. He just asks a girl if she loves him and he's willing to do what lovers do... whatever that is. Because he doesn't explain.

76- "Light it Up" - Luke Bryan -- Not to be confused with Major Lazer's "Light it Up" featuring Nyla. A really fun song, mind you. Go listen to it. I had to give it another listen before Luke Bryan brought his song with the same title to the charts. A song that's not really worth listening. Luke Bryan doesn't light this song up. He's just complaining about his girl problems. Granted, he actually tells us a story about his girl problems, unlike Adam Levine in our previous song, who just says random words strung together in a slightly catchy beat. Granted, Luke's story isn't that interesting of story. But at least there's something. They had a fight. She left him. Now he is drowning in his misery, wishing she could love him again. Typical country stuff. Not awful. I've definitely heard worse. But it's nothing I'm going to purposely listen to again.

77- "Revenge" - XXXTENTACION -- Continuing our short XXX saga here, the guy is now telling us he wants revenge. I think. This is the sequel to Jocelyn Flores where I think he's mad at her for committing suicide. And he keeps telling us that he's now dug two graves, one for her I'm guessing and the other for him. So he's going to get revenge on her by committing suicide himself? That's not good. Maybe XXX should go call Logic's suicide hotline number. That's what I get from this. I felt emotion on "Jocelyn Flores." But I'm not so sure I like the direction this emotion has taken us.

79- "Neon Guts" - Lil Uzi Vert featuring Pharrell Williams -- This was one of the two songs from Uzi's album that I thought may have potential. Uzi himself I have zero faith in. But maybe Pharrell could add some life onto an album that is completely dead and boring? But nope. I think the most disappointing things is that this isn't Pharrell being Pharrell. Had he simply did what he usually did, I think this could've been a fun song. But instead Pharrell is trying to be Migos. No annoying sound effects, but the flow of this song is very Migos-like with all the short phrases that don't do a very good job of connecting together. It just seems like a bunch of random short phrases. I don't even know what it means to have neon guts. And I don't really care. Shame on you Pharrell.

80- "Two" - Lil Uzi Vert -- The first song on Uzi's album. If you care. And it's Uzi trying to tell the world he's got the money and the power. Good way to start off an album. By reminding the world how awesome, rich and cocky you are. Yes, I'm being sarcastic there. Uzi is a punk and I hate his music. The end.

81- "X" - Lil Uzi Vert -- I was going through this song and there was a line I just got stuck on. Uzi says that this girl has a butt like a zebra at the zoo. What in the living heck? I just... can't even. More stuff about riches, fame, stealing girls. All that garbage. But really?!?! Comparing a girl to a zebra? I...

82- "For Real" - Lil Uzi Vert -- Just a song about Uzi making love with all of these girls. Because he's so cool and famous. And he rhymes "For Real" with "Pharrell." Because that's even cooler. Yet, Pharrell's not even on this song. Fail.

84- "UnFazed" - Lil Uzi Vert featuring The Weeknd -- Why in the fetch does he capitalize the "f" in unfazed? Because he's Uzi. That's why. I almost skipped this song just in spite of that. But I listened to it anyways because it has The Weeknd on it and that gave me hope that it could be tolerable. But again, no. I should've skipped it. We start the song with The Weeknd saying the phrase "I'm unfazed" for 40 seconds. Then he gives a phoned in, lazy verse, which is followed by 40 more seconds of saying "I'm unfazed." Then we get a verse of Uzi trying to be Migos and singing more boring stuff. Then we end with 40 more seconds of "I'm unfazed." And this is music?

90- "No Sleep Leak" - Lil Uzi Vert -- What does "No Sleep Leak" even mean? Never mind. I don't want to know. And this is Uzi being full out Migos. It's awful. Get it away from me.

91- "Depression & Obsession" - XXXTENTACION -- At 2:24, I think this song might be XXX's longest song on the album. But it also might have the least amount of lyrics. Most of this is just slow guitar. This comes after XXX's song about how Jocelyn Flores committed suicide. And now he gives a statement that depression and obsession don't mix well. But is he talking about Jocelyn? Well, I certainly hope not. Because he says that he's poisoned and that he ate this girl. That's an awkward thing to come right after singing about a girl who killed herself. But I actually think this is talking about a different girl. He has depression, but yet he became obsessed with this girl after making out with her and that doesn't mix well. But pick a different metaphor, XXX, and put it somewhere else on the album. Because now I am envisioning you having eaten a girl who just committed suicide and that's a rather disgusting thought.

92- "Dark Queen" - Lil Uzi Vert -- Nope. I don't want to do it. Get this away from me. It's Migos again, but stretched out, boring Migos that is wrong in every way. I initially typed a lot of angry words after finally being done with all of Uzi's songs, but then I deleted them. Needless to say, this man's rap is the epitome of everything wrong with rap culture today and I hate it. His music is absolute dog crap and I'm ashamed for this country that we let 10 of his songs enter the charts when actual good, talented artists are being held off.

94- "Save Me" - XXXTENTACION -- OK, I lied. This song is longer than "Depression & Obsession." At 2:43, this is about the length of a normal song. Surprise! But most of this is a super depressing instrumental where he's crying for someone to save him. And he states that over and over. Because XXX doesn't write lyrics, really. But again, I feel like XXX is telling us he wants to commit suicide and he's begging for someone to save him. Call the number, brother. Call the number.

95- "Carry On" - XXXTENTACION -- One of the final songs on the 11 track, 21 minute long album that XXX released, this song mostly bored me. Same subject matter. Life sucks for him. He wants to kill himself. Me thinking he should call the suicide hotline. Let's hope he carries on and does something positive with his life. While he tries to carry on, I will carry on and move on from this XXX music that I hope doesn't show up again.

97- "Tell Me You Love Me" - Demi Lovato -- I saw this title and I immediately started singing "Lovefool" by The Cardigans. "Love me, love me. Say that you love me! Fool me, fool me. Go on and fool me!" Yeah, fun time jamming out to a classic 90's song. With that out of the way, Demi actually gives us something to cheer for this week. Funny that our three new real releases this week, outside all our Lil Uzi and XXX stuff, are all about an individual begging or asking a significant other to love them. Adam Levine just gives empty words. Luke Bryan tells a boring, cliche story. Demi might not bring anything new the table lyrically, but this is a song where she harnesses that vocal talent that I love from her. Sometimes she hides that voice of hers and I get frustrated when that happens, but this time she lets it out and brings some serious emotion to what otherwise would be cliche lyrics. And hey, what do you know. Adding some strong vocals with some real emotion actually makes me care about this heartbroken love story that she's telling us. Adam and Luke should take notes.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

DrogeMiester's Billboard Analysis - September 9, 2017

The new Billboard charts have arrived and so it's time again for me to give you my thoughts! In this weekly post, I cover three sections. First, I give my thoughts on the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Second, I give my thoughts on the songs that experienced significant gains below the top 10. Third, I give my initial thoughts on our new arrivals this week. I reserve the right to switch things up in the future, but for now this is what I'm sticking with. I've followed the Billboard charts for a long time now and this is a great way for me to express my thoughts to the world. I hope you enjoy!

Billboard Hot 100 Top 10: 

1- "Despacito" - Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber (=) -- Part of me never thought this day would come. But it has. Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men charted their 16th and final week at No. 1 on the chart dated March 9, 1996 with their hit single "One Sweet Day." A record that stood for 21 and a half years. During that time period, there have been 26 songs prior to "Despacito" that hit double digits at No. 1 and all of them fell short of tying the 16-week, five of them getting all the way to 14 weeks before collapsing. But "Despacito" has done the unthinkable. Mariah and B2M won't have to give up their crown, but they will have to share it with the most unlikely trio of artists. Who would've thought that a couple of Latino superstars would be the ones to tie the record on the U.S. charts? But of course you look at Justin Bieber's addition to the party and it all makes sense. The three of them managed to break cultural barriers and deliver a hit for millions of people across the globe to enjoy, regardless of language.

I do say that part of never thought that this day would come. I phrase it that way because the other part of me knew it was only a matter of time before it happened, especially since songs are camping out longer and longer in the Hot 100 thanks to the increased presence of streaming in our culture, which naturally has a longer shelf life for songs than radio or sales. Since 2013, songs have averaged 11 weeks in the top 10 and that number only seems to be getting higher. Compare that to Mariah's day when the average was just under 9 weeks. And that is even nearly double the five weeks they averaged from the beginning of the Hot 100 in 1958 until the introduction of the Nielsen SoundScan in 1991. So you can still say that Mariah's run is more impressive.

Does "Despacito" have a shot at breaking the record by getting to 17 weeks? No. It doesn't. If you haven't heard, Taylor Swift released a song just in time that will be soaring up to No. 1 next week as she's set to have the biggest week of sales for any song since Adele's "Hello." Now the question will be how long will "Despacito" remain in the top 10? The aforementioned "One Sweet Day" only lasted 19 weeks in the region after its 16-week run at the top. Radio for "Despacito" has started to collapse and sales probably won't hold for much longer, but solid streaming should keep it around.

2- "Wild Thoughts" - DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna & Bryson Tiller (=) -- I've been saying for weeks now that "Wild Thoughts" didn't have enough chart points or momentum to stop "Despacito" before it got the record. And I was right. It wasn't rocket science, though, so don't praise me too much. Now with Taylor Swift sweeping in next week, "Wild Thoughts" is looking to be stopped altogether from reaching No. 1. And quite frankly I'm happy. Rihanna doesn't need another No. 1. She's had about 20 too many of those. And this song is one of her worst.

3- "Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)" - Cardi B (=) -- I'm certainly glad this monstrosity isn't getting any higher. Yes, I'm glad that a solo woman was able to make it into the top three, but I didn't want this solo woman to be the one to do it. I'll be much happier with Taylor Swift being the woman to break the trend because she's much more deserving.

4- "Believer" - Imagine Dragons (+1) -- Imagine Dragons moves up a spot because "Unforgettable" has started to tank. I actually find that sad. I would've preferred French Montanta and Swae Lee to stay in the top five over Imagine Dragons. That's strange.

5- "Attention" - Charlie Puth (+1) -- Copy and paste the last comment. Except for that last sentence. It's not strange for me to diss on Charlie Puth. The man is bland and boring and I wish that the radio would give up its love affair with this untalented man.

6- "Unforgettable" - French Montana featuring Swae Lee (-2) -- Again, I'm sad that this is dropping. I would've been totally fine if this had eventually snuck its way to the top of the charts. But now it's looking like it is on its way out of the top 10.

7- "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" - Shawn Mendes (=) -- More boring, bland white boys singing bland pop songs that the radio has a love affair with. At least we have a small win by keeping this untalented white boy out of the top five yet another week. I mean, we've already had enough damage to the music industry by having this song exist in the first place, let alone break into the top 10. Can we please have a small win by not allowing it into the top five?

8- "That's What I Like" - Bruno Mars (=) -- Why won't this song go away?

9- "Shape of You" - Ed Sheeran (=) -- I want this song to go away, too. But I have to stop and recognize another major milestone in Billboard history right here as Ed Sheeran now stands on his own with Billboard's second most prestigious record, the longest number of weeks any song has spent in the top 10 with 33 weeks... and counting because it won't go away. Ed broke out of the three-way tie he joined last week and shoves LeAnn Rimes' "How Do I Live" and The Chainsmokers' "Closer" down into second place. I do find it sad to see LeAnn fall from this spot after what has now been 20 years. But again, with how long songs are staying in the top 10 today, LeAnn Rimes still has the more impressive run as she did it when staying in the top 10 for that long was unheard of while Ed has done so in a time where a lot of songs have come awfully close.

10- "Rake it Up" - Yo Gotti featuring Nicki Minaj (+14) -- Gross. We already have Cardi B, the Nicki Minaj wannabe, in the top 10. And now we have the queen of trash herself in the region as well? It had this huge of a jump because of the music video being released. I can only hope that the momentum stops here because this really is one of the worst songs of the year. Each week I give the new songs a grade on my Excel file to make it easier on me in creating my best and worst songs of the year. This song I gave a flat out F grade. And I stand by that.

Rising on the Hot 100:

11- "Strip that Down" - Liam Payne featuring Quavo (+2) -- This is heading into the top 10, isn't it? Well, I suppose I'll take this if it means kicking anything from No. 7 to No. 10 out since those songs have already overstayed their welcome. Although with Taylor soaring to the top spot next week and the VMA's impacting sales, it'll be interesting to see what actually happens next week.

18- "Sorry Not Sorry" - Demi Lovato (+7) -- Demi announced her new album and released her newest single. I believe that's what helped this song get a decent jump. And do you know what? I totally fine with this. I'll take a decently average Demi song over our any other females in the top 10 right now. But I'm not confident this will actually get there.

29- "1-800-273-8255" - Logic featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid (+8) -- I'm not sure what has caused this song's most recent resurgence after I thought it was on its way out, but I'm cool with that. This song has helped a lot of people and I think it's decent musically. The VMA performance will help it get another huge boost next week.

38- "What Ifs" - Kane Brown featuring Lauren Alaina (+6) -- We now have three country songs currently in the top 40, with this being the highest riser of the bunch. And I'm fine with this joining the club, I suppose. It's better than the other two at the moment, that being "Body Like a Back Road" by Sam Hunt and "Small Town Boy" by Dustin Lynch. But let's get a good country song to the top of the country charts, please?

41- "Young Dumb & Broke" - Khalid (+8) -- I keep being more or less neutral about this song rising fast. It's not great. It's not awful. It just kinda exists. Although it would really be nice if that Marshmello song with Khalid was the Khalid song rising, but it dropped this week after its debut last week. And this song is another VMA performance, so I'm anticipating a big jump next week.

45- "Drinkin' Problem" - Midland (+6) -- No. This is a country song that needs to go away. I don't care if I lived in a city called Midland once. I want the country band called Midland to disappear.

58- "When it Rains it Pours" - Luke Combs (+10) -- Unlike Luke Combs actual lyrics, I'm going to use this phrase correctly. When it rains, it pours! We have Luke Combs joining Midland, Kane Brown and Lauren Alaina rising this week. There's some good country songs on the charts. Can't country radio accept one of those and send it to the top?

75 "B.E.D" - Jacquees (+14) -- Not time to panic, yet. But let's not encourage this guy to make more music.

New Arrivals:

20- "Friends" - Justin Bieber & BloodPop® -- I'm a lot more happy that I should be that I got the ® on BloodPop® in there. That's all I'll say about that. I had never heard of BloodPop® before this song came out. And that's probably because he mostly only did writing and production work and this is his first released single as a part of the music instead of just being behind the scenes. Although a quick wiki search revealed to me that his previous stage name was Blood Diamonds and then the light bulb went off. Blood Diamonds did a pretty sweet remix of my favorite Ellie Goulding song, "Anything Could Happen," on the "Halcyon Days" album. Maybe he should've kept the name Blood Diamonds. That sounds cooler to me. But anywho, his electronic work with this song is what makes it work on an otherwise average Bieber track. Thus this reminds me a lot of "2U" by David Guetta and Bieber. Although I do think the lyrics are somewhat more interesting and fairly relatable with Bieber asking the age-old question, "Can we still be friends?" Stated after a breakup. Yes, that can happen. But it's hard to pull off. I would've been fine if this had debuted at No. 1. But I think I'm more happy with it debuting at No. 20 because that seems to be a better fit.

34- "I Get the Bag" - Gucci Mane featuring Migos -- Oh my goodness. Did someone just serve me up a plate of horse manure with a side of cow pies? Gucci Mane AND Migos on the same song? I almost just skipped this song, but I did my due diligence and gave it a listen. Although I didn't make it very far. Mostly because I got bored. After a very typical Quavo opening, Takeoff drones on and on with perhaps the most boring rap verse ever. It's super long with no groove and mostly all on the same note with a lot of mumbles. Like Offset recorded it while drunk and high in the studio and 3 a.m. without any previous warm-up. I didn't make it to the Gucci part of the song, which apparently doesn't happen until the second of two verses. So this is more like Quavo and Takeoff featuring Gucci Mane. Because Gucci is barely in this and Offset is not in it at all, so I feel they're cheating by calling this Migos. Anyways, this is as awful as you might think. I don't know how this can be referred to as music.

53- "Roll in Peace" - Kodak Black featuring XXXTENTACION -- Out of the frying pan and into the fire. Gucci Mane featuring Offset-less Migos followed by the untalented Kodak Black featuring the man who should go back to prison and leave the world alone? OK, maybe that's mean, but this XXX dude got popular while in prison and has been nothing but trouble ever since. Yet because making prison rappers famous is the cool thing to do, Kodak Black decides to feature him on his song right around the time where XXX's album gets released. Yikes. Luckily he doesn't show up until the end of the song, but that's no consolation because we just have to deal with an awful Kodak Black for most of the song, mumbling through his nonsensical, dirty, useless lyrics with no groove or flow. Yeah, I lasted longer on the Gucci/Migos song. This is a piece of filth.

77- "Look What You Made Me Do" - Taylor Swift -- Oh hey. I didn't expect this song to get here this week. Taylor released it Thursday night, just in time for next week's tracking week. But I guess this song's sales are so huge that it sneaked into No. 77 with just a few hours of release, meaning Taylor officially misses the chance to debut at No. 1, because this is an absolute guarantee to skyrocket 76 spots next week and stop "Despacito" from breaking the record. So let's get to it!

From the second I listened to this song, which was shortly after its release, I knew this was going to receive a ton of mixed reaction. It's safe to say that this song can be summed with her moment of dialogue towards the end, wherein she says, "I'm sorry. The old Taylor can't come to the phone right now. Why? Oh. Because she's dead!" It's safe to say our innocent, young country pop Taylor is long gone and she's had quite the transformation over her career. But is it a good transformation or just another slip off the deep end like Miley Cyrus in 2012? I'll let you decide what you think of that, but I actually appreciate the transformation she's gone through. Instead of giving us the same stuff each album, she's experimented and evolved. She's written music that represents the feelings and emotions she's gone through. Because, yeah, an 18-year old Taylor is going to have different things on her mind than a soon-to-be 28-year-old Taylor and her lyrics reflect that. Yeah, I know her age. Because it's mine. Her last album was titled "1989" after her birth year. Which is my birth year. So you can say that Taylor and I have progressed through adulthood together.

Specifically with this song, she's just blowing out all the anger and frustration she has towards the world's most unintelligent couple, Kanye West and Kim Kardashian. If you don't know about this feud, go look do a Google search. And laugh at all the horribly awkward things Kanye and Kim have done and said. Sprinkle in a little bit of Katy Perry's boneheadedness of late and Taylor is dealing with a lot of crap. And yes, she should be Christlike and turn the other cheek. But as a human being, sometimes you just need to explode and vent about the horrible things happening around you. I'm not a fan of diss tracks, but this is a loaded, sharp, hatred-filled diss track where every line is a direct attack at yet another dumb moment that's been thrown in her face and as I dug deep into the lyrics of this song, I was blown away by how detailed and emotional every single lyric of the song was and how it connected all together for a huge punch in the face towards Kim, Kanye and Katy.

Musically I also enjoy this. It's very catchy and infectious with quite the range of instrumentation and quite a bit of electronic influences thrown in, which makes me curious about how the whole album will sound. The only thing I don't really like is the chorus. I find it a bit annoying. But outside that I think it's a solid song from T-Swift. If you hate the song, then you'll probably still hate it. But if you were on the fence, give it another chance, because this has the potential to grow on you. And again, the more you know about this drama, the more meaning the lyrics will have.

79- "Younger Now" - Miley Cyrus -- Speaking of Miley Cyrus, here she is right after T-Swift! And talk about someone who's gone through quite the transformation. She went from every 8-year-old girl's role model to the prime example of a singer who's seemingly decided to throw her life down the drain to, well, now. "Malibu" floored me with how great and normal it was. I expected awful Miley still and I got the old Miley back. And that's why I find this song interesting. It's the title track and opening number to her upcoming album "Younger Now" where she expresses that she feels like a new person. She feels younger again, yet she's not afraid of who she used to be because everyone changes and the experiences in life shape you into the person you will become. Even though this album is not out yet, this feels like a great introductory song to her new album where she unveils the new Miley, which then leads right into "Malibu," which is followed by a yet unreleased collaboration with Dolly Parton called "Rainbowland." Standing on it's own, the song is fairly basic and surface level, but I feel it will be a solid intro to an album that I'm excited about!

80- "It's Every Night Sis" - RiceGum featuring Alissa Violet -- I can't believe this is happening. Remember that song "It's Everyday Bro" by that punk kid Jake Paul whose arrogance and cockiness was higher than just about anyone I've seen. Yeah, well apparently it was somehow a diss track towards this Alissa Violet girl and this RiceGum dude got offended, so he teamed up with Alissa Violet to write a direct attack on Jake Paul and his song. OK, I get it. I hate the song, too. But this diss track in retaliation is just as bad, if not worse. Like, I have no idea what stupid, childish feud this group of crybabies is having, but the world doesn't need to hear about it. The only good thing about Jake Paul is that his songs only lasted a week on the charts. Let's hope that's the same here because it's an absolute shame that either of these songs charted when great songs like "Symphony" by Clean Bandit and Zara Larsson don't. But hey, that's 2017 for you. "Symphony" has charted everywhere else in the world, but not here.

82- "Transportin'" - Kodak Black -- I think Kodak Black's album dropped and that is why we have two of his songs to discuss today. Let's just praise the music gods that two songs is all he got because having to go through anymore would be an atrocity. I mean, two Kodak Black songs is already two too many. At least in this song, though, there's no punk prison thug tagged along with Kodak. But that's also the problem. This is just Kodak and no one else. So I had to sit there and listen to Kodak mumble incoherently through three minutes of song. I mean, I've heard worse from Kodak. But that's not saying much. Most things Kodak touches turns to giant piles of horse crap.

90- "Questions" - Chris Brown -- Another rapper that the world doesn't need any new music from. At least this time he's not singing graphic, disgusting sex songs like he is is his previous single, "Privacy." The problem here with "Questions" is that there's nothing to this song. It's a part of his upcoming eight studio album that includes 40 tracks. Yes, you hear that right. 40. This one just over two minutes long and all he does is tell the girl he has a question for her that he wants an answer to. That's it. He repeats that over and over some basic, "I love you" lyrics in the two verses. And he doesn't even reveal to us what the question is. He just says he has a question. If the whole album is going to be this empty, well, I don't know how people can call this interesting music. I just hope that we don't get much of anything from this album on the charts. If I had to cover 40 Chris Brown songs in one week, I probably just wouldn't do it. One is bad enough.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

DrogeMiester's Billboard Analysis - September 2, 2017

The new Billboard charts have arrived and so it's time again for me to give you my thoughts! In this weekly post, I cover three sections. First, I give my thoughts on the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Second, I give my thoughts on the songs that experienced significant gains below the top 10. Third, I give my initial thoughts on our new arrivals this week. I reserve the right to switch things up in the future, but for now this is what I'm sticking with. I've followed the Billboard charts for a long time now and this is a great way for me to express my thoughts to the world. I hope you enjoy!

Billboard Hot 100 Top 10:

1- "Despacito" - Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber (=) -- With a 15th week at No. 1, "Despacito" now stands alone in second place on the list of longest-leading No. 1 hits in the history of the Hot 100. Only one more week to tie the all-time record set by Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men with "One Sweet Day." With the latter song being in the 1990's, that means "Despacito" is now the longest-running No. 1 hit of the 21st century and it also stands alone as the longest-running primarily non-English No. 1 hit of all-time. It's also the longest running No. 1 hit on both the digital sales chart and streaming chart. And while we're at it, a reminder that it's also the most viewed YouTube video of all-time as of a couple of weeks ago.

So the big question is, can it do it? Can "Despacito" tie the 16-week record? Well, we first look at the current runner up, "Wild Thoughts," and the margin decreased quite a bit from this week to last week as "Despacito" now only holds a 1.19-to-1 lead, compared to the 1.46-to-1 lead from the last two weeks. But don't be deceived. "Wild Thoughts" made that push due to a 69-cent iTunes discount because "Despacito" remained steady in all three categories while "Wild Thoughts" went nowhere on radio and streaming. When it comes to 69-cent iTunes discounts, two can play at that game as "Despacito" has now just gone on sale, guaranteeing that "Wild Thoughts" will not stop it from hitting 16 weeks.

But it's still not a guarantee that it will get there as the biggest competitor now will be Justin Bieber's new single "Friends," which is headed for a lofty debut next week. Can Justin Bieber humorously stop himself from getting the most prestigious Billboard record? If he doesn't, *rumor is that Taylor Swift is set to drop a new single on Friday, which will be in play when "Despacito" tries to go for the official record-breaking 17th week at the top. Taylor's snake videos on Twitter and Instagram seem to confirm that at least something is coming real soon. It's proven harder and harder for songs to debut at No. 1 with how important streaming is now, but if any act can do it, both Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift would be the most likely candidates.

*- Rumor confirmed. After typing this up, I went to Taylor's Twitter to see if there was an update and earlier today she announced that her new album "Reputation" will be out November 10 with the first single coming tomorrow night (late Thursday/early Friday). That will take effect when "Despacito" goes for week 17, as previously mentioned.

2- "Wild Thoughts" - DJ Khaled featuring Rihanna & Bryson Tiller (=) -- As I previously noted, Rihanna and friends made a pretty tactful push with that iTunes discount. But it proved to be too little, too late. Record or no record, "Wild Thoughts" is still on target to eventually pass "Despacito," but the aforementioned singles from Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift could prove difficult to overcome if they do in fact debut high and stay high. "Wild Thoughts" may be joining the long list of songs that almost made it to No. 1. Which, if that ends up being the case, I'll be happy. Rihanna doesn't need another No. 1 hit. She's had too many of those in her career. 

3- "Bodak Yellow (Money Moves)" - Cardi B (+5) -- It took us eight whole months, but we finally have a solo female top three hit in 2017. Rihanna, Halsey and Taylor Swift made it into the region this year, but they were accompanied by other male singers on their songs. This is also the first female rapper to hit the top three with a debut entry since Iggy Azalea's "Fancy," featuring Charlie XCX, in 2014 and also the highest charting female rap song unaccompanied by another artist since Nicki Minaj's "Anaconda," also in 2014. This is all fine and dandy, but I really wish a different female artist would've been the one to set these marks because I really don't like this song. But even though it's surging right now, I question how high it can actually go because it currently only has streaming going for it. It could be an eventual candidate for No. 1 if radio and sales catch. I hope they don't, though. This is as high as I want this song to go.

4- "Unforgettable" - French Montana featuring Swae Lee (-1) -- It actually makes me sad to see this song slip a spot. I would've loved to see this pass "Wild Thoughts" on the charts and I would've been fine if it eventually snuck into the No. 1 spot. But now with "Bodak Yellow" skyrocketing into the region, that seems like hopeless thought. But oh well. I won't lose too much sleep over this.

5- "Believer" - Imagine Dragons (-1) -- It's good to see Imagine Dragons falling a spot this week.

6- "Attention" - Charlie Puth (-1) -- It's good to see Charlie Puth falling a spot this week.

7- "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" - Shawn Mendes (-1) -- It's good to see Shawn Mendes falling a spot this week.

8- "That's What I Like" - Bruno Mars (-1) -- It's good to see Bruno Mars falling a spot this week.

9- "Shape of You" - Ed Sheeran (=) -- I've been so focused on the potential record-breaking run of "Despacito" that I almost forgot that Ed Sheeran just tied the second-most prestigious record in the history of the Hot 100, that being the 32-week record of weeks in the top 10 of the Hot 100. Ed Sheeran is now in a three-way tie with The Chainsmokers' "Closer," featuring Halsey, and LeAnn Rimes' "How Do I Live." One more week and Ed has the record all to himself, which is looking fairly likely. Although is certainly not a guarantee, especially if Justin Bieber debuts in the top 10 next week.

10- "Body Like a Back Road" - Sam Hunt (+1) -- Well, I saw this coming because Sam Hunt was hanging out at No. 11 while "I'm the One" was taking a nosedive, but... WHY?!?!?!?! Why in the name of tarnation can't we get rid of this abomination?

Rising on the Hot 100:

13- "Strip that Down" - Liam Payne featuring Quavo (+2) -- And why is Liam becoming the most popular 1D member? At least at the moment, because we can't discount Zayn. But even then, why are Zayn and Liam the two 1D members celebrating the most staying power. Harry Styles actually made a really good album and we threw him in the trash in favor of these two punks. Shame.

15- "Slow Hands" - Niall Horan (+2) -- I'm also not a huge fan of Liam doing well. But I could take him over Liam. And why isn't Louis doing well, either? We as an American population should learn to reward good behavior, not reward artists making lazy and/or boring songs.

29- "What About Us" - P!nk (+53) -- This was certainly expected as P!nk debuted at No. 82 last week with only a day's worth of tracking. Now in her first full week, she earns herself a top 30 hit. And I can only hope that this is a song that will stick around. Typically songs tend to drop again in their second full week, so I'll expect that next week, but I really want this to rise into the top 10. Thankfully the radio has always loved P!nk, so I'm crossing my fingers here.

33- "Versace on the Floor" - Bruno Mars (+10) -- I'm now wondering if "Versace on the Floor" will play out more like Ed Sheeran's "Castle on the Hill" and not quite catch on. If this missed the top 10, I would shed no tears, but at the moment the fact that it is rising is a good thing because that takes away from Bruno's other baffling hit, the extremely overrated "That's What I Like."

37- "1-800-273-8255" - Logic featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid (+13) -- Say what you want about the quality of this song. It has inspired people to actually call the suicide hotline and get help. That's a huge win. Although I'm a bit confused as to why it is rising right now. Did a music video get released? Because I thought this was slowly on the way out. Oh well. I don't mind. I both enjoy this song and really appreciate what Logic is setting out to do.

52- "The Race" - Tay-K (+18) -- Do I have to remind you of this song's story. This punk kid is facing murder charges and is currently in prison. He wrote this song during his tenure of breaking free before getting caught again. Why are we rewarding him with fame? Get rid of this right now!

68- "When it Rains it Pours" - Luke Combs (+12) -- And the rest of the risers this week are country songs. This being definitely the least of them. And sadly the top of the risers from this week. Typical country radio. Playing all the dumb country songs.

73- "Unforgettable" - Thomas Rhett (+13) -- In a hilarious turn of events, I have no idea how this song goes. I see the title "Unforgettable" and I start singing the French Montana and Swae Lee song. I sometimes re-listen to songs when that happens to remind me of what I thought about it, but in this case I think it would prove a point by not doing so. This song is quite forgettable.

79- "It Ain't My Fault" - Brothers Osborne (+12) -- Oh heck yes! This song has been hanging out in the bottom of the charts and I've been wanting it to break through. I'm still not confident that it will, but I would love it if this were the country song that becomes a huge hit. I'm not quite as big of a fan of it as some people are, but it's certainly better than most country songs right now.

80- "All the Pretty Girls" - Kenny Chesney (+12) -- And this song can please go away. Again, go listen to the Fun. song of the same title from Fun.'s first album. It's really good. This is not.

85- "Every Little Thing" - Carly Pearce (+13) -- Oh please, please, please, please, please let this be a smash country hit. Good songs deserve to be rewarded, remember?

New Arrivals:

42- "Silence" - Marshmello featuring Khalid -- After a huge year last year, EDM has been rather quiet in 2017, at least when it comes to mainstream hits. Since I love the genre, it's great see a good EDM song show up again. Although I'm not sure how much of this is Marshmello or how much of it is Khalid. Probably more Khalid, but Marshmello is becoming more mainstream after "Alone" broke out last year. As far as EDM hits goes, this is not a strong banger that you can blast at parties and it's not necessarily super deep lyrically, but Khalid has a great voice that works well with an EDM backdrop. On his own, he's still good. But he can ride the line of a bit boring at times. Marshmello gives him just enough energy to make this a better than average Khalid song and it does have enough emotion, given that Khalid is speaking of being emotionally broken by love and thus becoming one with the silence, yet is trying his best to get his sense of confidence back. This is a very nice song that I hope does well. If it does catch on, I would envision more Marshmello collaborations with mainstream artists in the future, which will definitely improve our current state of music.

88- "More Girls Like You" - Kip Moore -- The first of our trio of new country songs goes to Kip Moore. I'm not super familiar with Kip Moore and when I looked at this title, I didn't have very high expectations. But I quickly found myself rather enjoying life while listening. So much so that I listened to the song three times in a row right off the bat. The fact that this is only two and a half minutes helped with that. In addition to a quick song, this is a simple song with a catchy beat that might make me be humming it for the rest of the day. What I really appreciate here from Kip Moore is that he's not trying to hard. He's just singing a simple song about a guy falling in love with a girl that makes me get up and want to go country dancing. And I don't go country dancing.

92- "Something New" - Wiz Khalifa featuring Ty Dolla $ign -- I think there's only been one previous Wiz Khalifa song that I've enjoyed and that of course is "See You Again," the Paul Walker tribute from "Furious 7." And yes, it bugs the living crap out of me when radio stations play the version of that song without Wiz Khalifa, because his rap is what makes that song. Without it, it's just another bland and boring Charlie Puth pop song. Anyways, enough of that and onto this song. Which continues Wiz's streak of making it so there's only one Wiz song that I love. Because yeah this song is crap. And I'm definitely convinced that "See You Again" was just a strange fluke. We actually start out with a nice beat and Ty Dolla $ign opens with a decent chorus, but then the song goes nowhere from there. Wiz sounds bored. Ty sounds slightly less bored. Musically the song goes nowhere and lyrically it's just about them sleeping with women. Yawn.

95- "Untouchable" - YoungBoy Never Broke Again -- What's with this trend of prison making rappers popular? I swear, if you want to find success in the rap community, go commit a crime, spend some time in prison and release a song right when you get released and the whole rap community will think you are the next savior of the world. Oh well. I suppose I shouldn't dwell too much on this. The story with this kid is that he went to the studio right before he got arrested and just spewed out some thoughts he had about life, then did his time and almost forgot about the song. People told him it was awesome and so when he got out, he wrote a second verse and released. Thus we have a simple rap song that's like a before and after prison song. It's actually not that bad when it comes to rap standards. Even though he's partially mumbling and stumbling through both verses, I can actually sense some emotion here. I can tell he's rapping what's honestly on his mind instead of giving your typical sex, drugs, fame rapping. Nothing I'm going to listen to on my own free will. But there's worse out there, so it's whatever. Also, he should pick a different rap name because this one is dumb.

97- "I Could Use a Love Song" - Maren Morris -- I have a soft spot for female country singers. I've always preferred them over male country singers. Along with that, I've grown to enjoy Maren Morris. I wouldn't call her pure country. She's more of a country pop singer that reminds me a lot of Taylor Swift's early years. You know, back when Taylor actually sang country pop, before she completely abandoned the country side of that and went to straight pop. Since Maren is only four months younger than Taylor, I like to think of her as the type of singer that Taylor would be right now if Taylor had stuck with her roots. "I Could Use a Love Song" is fairly simple, but there's an honest hurt to her voice as Maren sings about how bitter love has made her and how she yearns to hear a love song that will take her back to the days where she was hopeful and happy about love, so that she can cure some of the heartbreak she's experiencing now. And, well, in thinking of Taylor Swift again, I feel that if Maren turned on "Love Story," that would be the perfect cure for her!

98- "Fix a Drink" - Chris Janson -- I was hoping we could go three for three this week with our country music after Kip and Maren delivered strong songs. But sadly that's not the case. Yet this is not quite a lost cause. I like Chris Janson's voice and I think this song has a decent groove to it as a country rock song. But there's just no depth behind this. Yeah, Kip and Maren's songs were simple as well, but they were singing about things that I found interesting and they had a lot of passion behind it. Chris is just informing us that he can't fix any of the problems in the world, but he can fix himself or someone else a drink. And that's literally pretty much it. Good for you, Chris. Now after you're done drinking your drink that you so amazingly put together, go back to the drawing board and give me something interesting next time that I can get behind.