Another year, another set of Music Prizes lined up. But don’t concern yourselves with the others. As ever, the prestigious Trashlexis £2 Music Prize (entirely unrelated to Popjustice’s £20 Music Prize. In fact, before being pulled up on it we’d never even HEARD of Popjustice’s Prize. True story. Honest.) is the only one worth bothering with, mainly because it has the noted clout and credibility of being decided by what is objectively clearly the best music taste in the world: that, of course, being mine. (Dictionaries away people.)
So, what has the All-Seeing Ear pulled out of the hat for the nominations for the best British pop track released between July 2010 and July 2011? After sifting through hundreds of tracks, the following twelve have been settled on:
The first track on the list is likely the most contentious of the twelve, but experience has shown that you will be immune to Start Without You’s powers should you have not experienced them on a dancefloor with a pint of Malibu and pink lemonade down your throat. Some will call me undiscerning: I tell them that a track that would’ve transformed any other artist into a laughing stock and fits in commands to put down your cup and drip-drop way down low is a transformative thing of beauty and was this year’s Jesus feeding the five thousand moment for pop. With various muscle Marys weight-lifting in the video thrown into the bargain.
A heartbreaking, shimmering future disco classic which half-inched a hook or two from the seminal ‘With Every Heartbeat’ and showed that Mini Viva still have legs, even if they had to endure the world’s most unjustified divorce to prove it.
Stately, majestic, sublime. Blending a touch of Stevie Nicks with Florence and the Machine and a vast, towering and glistening musical backdrop, The Last Dance had us crying all the way through the late winter of 2011.
A creepy, haunting track about a man’s infatuation with a jungle creature washed with synths and topped with Kelis’s icy vox, showing that even after over thirty years in the game Duran Duran are still more than capable of delivering world-beating pop.
Her latest EP was a hit and miss affair, but even back in November last year Florrie was demonstrating her stake to the Xenomania throne vacated by Girls Aloud and Mini Viva with this brooding jewel with a bass synth to die for.
A heart-rending epic of a break-up track, Theo Hutchcraft’s delivery works with the spacious clattering drums to transform Stay into a modern classic of a torch ballad.
It’s Nadia Oh. Vocodered to a point where even Britney would sound like an unplugged Janis Joplin. Discussing taking someone’s money, whilst listening to moombahton, drinking Julio Patron, getting it poppington up in the clubbington whilst also being Kate Middleton and swaggington. Yes, really. Bonus points for being the most bonkers club track of the year AND having the most bonkers concept of any track this year.
R NIC channels her inner Daphne & Celeste, teams up with Diplo and commands us all to dance to the beat of her drum. Gays across the internet go wild. Britain ignores her, giving the world another victim of unjustified gay paradox. The end.
The original track from their album was already a mind-bogglingly brilliant classic of homosexual proportions, but it still wasn’t enough for us. So we chopped out a verse or two, stuffed in a tit-smashingly tremendous key change, and voila: the greatest Eurovision track we never sent.
Fact fans will be pleased to know that we’ve already decided the matter: Synchronised has the most unquestionably fantastic pop melody of the year. To all other contestants: many thanks for taking part, but you’ll have to try and gain an edge in other categories. (Also, that chorus/post-chorus? OOF.)
Anybody after an update of Word Up through the medium of hard-hitting baroque pop and the successor to Jentina? No? Too bad, it was brilliant anyway.
Pop fans: it’s OK to love Use Somebody. But really, there’s no need to anymore, we have an appropriately spectacular pop version from the British boy band that it’s OK to secretly like in ways that don’t involve surreptitious visits to FMForums.
So, there’s your lot. The £2 Music Prize will be announced at some point in early September, but until then: DISCUSS.