Every now and pop battle emerges that has everyone talking. It’s not really a secret that we’ve got a big one on our hands here. In one corner, we have Katy Perry’s “Roar,” the first lifted from her upcoming third studio album, Prism. In the other corner, we have Lady Gaga’s “Applause,” the first lifted from her third studio album, “ARTPOP.” Both have wildly loyal fanbases, and there is a crazy amount of overlapping between them, and due to the days the tracks were officially released, they will actually be going head to head on the charts (Katy’s Sunday and Monday sales will be counted for the previous week’s chart.) This is certainly an exciting time for pop music, but the implications aren’t exactly huge. Clearly both artists have proven they can be successful, and both tracks will be hits; that’s a no-brainer. You can have a look at which song is (way) better than the other (“Roar,” “Applause,”) but the short of it is that this battle isn’t about being better, it’s about being more successful. So good lucky, ladies! It’s be tons of fun watching your respective fan bases go crazy, but in the meantime, let me provide the rest of you with 10 healthy alternatives to this epic catfight (in no particular order.)
01. Haim “The Wire”
Previewed just two weeks ago, Haim’s new one “The Wire” has just officially been released to purchase and stream, in addition to the hilarious video. Not to mention, it’s currently the Single of the Week on iTunes, so you can bask in its glory FOR FREE. “The Wire” will never be as successful as “Applause” or “Roar,” but there’s no comparing their quality. Give this one a go (See review HERE if you need further convincing.)
02. Azealia Banks vs. Iggy Azalea
Now THIS is battle worth investing in! Two wildly talented female rappers with an electro twist… and they cannot stand each other! Not only that, but the rest of us have seemingly been forced to choose! How about pinning some of their work against each other and deciding for yourself! The music is provocative, boundary-pushing, and just really damn good.
03. Icona Pop “All Night”
While “I Love It” will most likely always be their claim to fame (probably even their One Hit Wonder,) their new one, “All Night” was just recently unleashed and it. is. awesome. In more ways than one, it runs circles around both of these tracks, and you still get that candy coating you crave, but with an explosive center. Highly, highly recommended!
I’m not trying to start this age old drama again, but how about giving their pop ancestors a bit of a go! Both fanbases have adamantly denied that their respective icon has stemmed from the (M)DNA of the Queen of Pop, but anyone who has a musical grip on reality will be able to back this up. Even Gaga and Katy have acknowledged her influence! Thirty years after her debut, Madonna is still making hits. HELLO, take notes. Denying her impact on pop music is like saying Julia Child wasn’t a chef, but Rachel Ray is a genius.
05. Donna Summer
The late Donna Summer literally made dance music a popular genre. Her hits are absolutely legendary, and her impact is talked about extensively even to this day. Just last year, she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for her contributions, and it’s been a long time coming; she was the first artist to bring a rock edge to dance music. Without her contributions, Katy and Gaga don’t have the careers they do today.
05. Kylie Minogue
So here we have the Princess (now Goddess?) of Pop, Kylie Minogue. The Australian superstar doesn’t have the same level of fame as Madonna does stateside, but in the rest of the world, she is a living legend. It’s virtually impossible to be an international female pop sensation and not look up to Kylie for her contribution, class, and rebound-ability. Over 25 years after her debut, she’s respected more and more as an artist every day. This is one career worth studying.
06. AlunaGeorge Body Music
Now THIS is forward-thinking pop music! Part electro, part R&B, all incredible. This album is going to change your perspective on pop music for the better. Again, this is never going to compete with Lady Gaga or Katy Perry in the commercial venue, but based on what we’ve heard so far, this is going to be the far superior album. Give it a try! I have a feeling you’ll prefer it.
07. THE BOYS
Hey! Ladies aren’t the only ones who know how to make awesome pop music! Give the boys a little attention, eh? Sure, there aren’t exactly many male options out there at the moment, but that’s not exactly a bad thing, right? Here are a few recommendations, some of which you’ll already know!
08. Remember The Greatest Chart Battle EVER
While America was completely unaware, back in the mid-90s, the UK saw the most epic chart battle ever: Britpop icons Blur vs. Oasis. “Country House” and “Roll With It” were being released on the same day, and the public went nuts. It was a high profile match, with Blur coming out victorious by the skin of their teeth. Even today, this battle is still frequently referenced. It makes “Roar” vs. “Applause” look like a friendly arm wrestle.
09. Jessie Ware “Imagine It Was Us”
How we’re focused on these two tracks, and Jessie Ware’s stunning “Imagine It Was Us” went completely unnoticed is really beyond my comprehension. THIS is a pop song that deserves to be fought over. It’s danceable, it’s catchy, it’s artistic, it’s brilliant! While “Applause” actually stands up pretty well next to it, “Imagine It Was Us,” this is still the superior track. Do yourself a favor… forget about the battle and start dancing to this immediately.
10. Rhye “Open”
This track will turn you into goo. Rhye’s “Open” is literally perfect in every aspect imaginable. It has an alternative soul vibe with a simple arrangement and soothing vocal. The Sade comparisons are inevitable, but it’s not a carbon copy. Give this duo a chance, but definitely start with this song. Halfway through it and you’ll forget about Diva War ’13. This is a much healthier decision!