Musical McCool Season 3, Week 9 (TQG, Rhyme Dust, AMERICA HAS A PROBLEM, and more)
Updated: Mar 8
Hey guys, welcome back to Musical McCool!
Sorry for the delay on this one. I guess when you've got a quieter week on your hands, the temptation to put it off is a little bigger; that and I was hugely busy this past weekend, but either way, I didn't want to fall behind on this series again.
The Top 10
This week seems to be continuing the trend of "out with the old, in with new".
1. Flowers - Miley Cyrus [LW: 1 / WOC: 7]
2. Boy's A Liar Pt. 2 - PinkPantheress (Ft. Ice Spice) [LW: 2 / WOC: 10]
3. Kill Bill - SZA [LW: #3 / WOC: 12]
4. Heaven - Niall Horan [LW: 4 / WOC: 2]
5. ceilings - Lizzy McAlpine [LW: #5 / WOC: 9]
6. Die For You (Remix) - The Weeknd (Ft. Ariana Grande) [LW: #51 / WOC: 16]
7. Players - Coi Leray [LW: #7 / WOC: 10]
8. Sure Thing - Miguel [LW: #6 / WOC: 9]
9. Calm Down (Remix) - Rema (Ft. Selena Gomez) [LW: #8 / WOC: 27]
10. 10:35 - Tiësto (Ft. Tate McRae) [LW: #9 / WOC: 17]
Yeah, the top 5 didn't shift at all, but at least they're all NEW hits! The only new entry was Die For You by The Weeknd, which after underperforming severely on the Irish charts, is now finally seeing a boost from the Ariana Grande remix. What can I say, these 2 have a tried and true formula that never fails to delight the public, and while I've personally never been a huge fan of this song - on an album with Starboy, Sidewalks, Ordinary Life, and Feel It Coming on it, this is B-tier at best - I do think Ari sounds great here, especially with the gorgeous multitracking and the harmonies! So yeah, couldn't say I cared much about the song's success before this, but I approve of this remix.
The Punished and the New
In terms of ACR victims this week, it wasn't quite the bloodbath we got on the last one, but there were still a couple of noticeable drops:
Made You Look by Meghan Trainor - #11 -> #28
Pointless by Lewis Capaldi - #13 -> #36
The Color Violet by Tory Lanez - #25 -> #87
I really can't say I'm upset by any of these. The best one's Made You look and it had a great run, while the other 2 are essentially mercy killings in my opinion... I mean mercy on me, to be clear.
Apart from Die For You, there were actually a couple of pretty massive gains across the Hot 100 too: Painting Pictures by Superstar Pride vaulted up to 19 (don't care) and Whistle by Jax Jones and Calum Scott shot up to 47... because of course it did, FUCK!
It's also worth noting that Gorillaz and Tame Impala's song New Gold is charting again off the sales of the new album, but a) it initially hit the charts in September of last year, and b) I have less than nothing to say about it... man, I wish they weren't so anonymous on this project!
That's about it though. And with only 4 new entries, like I said, this is a pretty quiet week overall. SO let's dive into it with:
Title: TQG by KAROL G & Shakira
I never know how to feel when an artist I love is making a comeback based on real-life drama. It's usually going to get a lot of attention from both fans and general gossip-lovers, but I do worry that it can come across as coasting, especially when you're an artist with as much clout and talent as Shakira. That being said, between that Bizarrap collab and now this one with Karol G, I have to admit I'm thoroughly impressed!
Now much like that last collab, one of the reasons this works so well is that it's not just 1 artist that shines. Sure, Shakira is going to sound amazing, but Karol G has some bitting lines here too, and I ADORE the interplay between them! It always frustrates me when these sorts of collabs are structured as one person handling the verses and one the chorus, or where they each get one verse. It's FAR more interesting here, where they're practically trading bars on the verses and share the chorus equally! And they both sound fantastic, especially on the beat, which has the standard, slower reggaeton rhythm, but brings in a lot of frigid synths that underline the scorn in their deliveries. See, TDQ stands for "te quedó grande" which essentially means "you got too big/cocky". It's a call-out to their cheating exes, where they, the women, are honestly better off and moving on, while their pathetic exes are still in their DMs and liking their posts. Sure, it's petty, but it's delivered with such derision and sounds so good, that I really do find myself grooving to it. I don't see this sticking around, considering the last Shakira song didn't, but again, I'd honestly love to see this stick around!
Title: Rhyme Dust by MK & Dom Dolla
Well, looks like the drum-and-bass trend from last year is continuing, or at the very least we seem to be trending away from house and more towards EDM again. Honestly though, if more of it sounds like this, I'd be perfectly fine with that. This is a collab between Australian DJ Dom Dolla and American DJ MK, where they sampled Q-Tip's Breathe and Stop to create this vibey, bass-heavy track that will probably KILL at festivals. As is, over my own speakers, I think I appreciate the sample and the blaring synths on the build-up more than the drop itself, but I can appreciate it's well-produced, you have to love Q-Tip's voice, and whenever the production is allowed to breathe more, especially on the post-chorus during the "right here, right there" portion, it sounds goddamn great!
I honestly wish the song was longer, as I think the different passages it goes through are quite engaging and I'd have liked to see some of them explored more. Again though, I'm sure you'd get that in a live setting, and I'm glad this is seeing so much success in certain circles. Good job you 2!
Title: Pretty Boys by Caity Baser
Oh yeah, the Friendly Sex girl... I had mixed feeling about that song. I could see that Caity Baser was self-aware, and I liked the conflict of the song where she's clearly caught feelings for this guy but rather than admit it, would rather just break things off completely to avoid getting hurt further; convoluted and messy, love it! I just didn't think the production or the hook were all that good, and I couldn't tell how much of it was supposed to be funny and how much was genuine. Well, that's certainly not a problem here!
This is definitely supposed to be a joke song, the emotional complexity is gone, and the content is a LOT more shallow, It's a song where she keeps hooking up with pretty boys, but then finding there's nothing else to them. Sure, you could call it demeaning and generalising (because it is), but I can't say I hate this. While the song is pretty mean-spirited, she sells it convincingly enough that I buy her as the bad guy here, you're not supposed to like her. And before any of you say anything, it's not like Cher Lloyd, whose character was far more annoying and unlikeable to the point of insufferably, and Caity at least seems aware that she's part of the problem here!
All that being said... at the end of the bridge, the screaming, exaggerated vocals that come in on the final hook are grating as FUCK! I can look past a lot, but that was the straw that broke the camel's back! So overall, I don't hate this, but I certainly don't see myself going back to it at all.
Title: AMERICA HAS A PROBLEM by Beyoncé
Between BREAK MY SOUL and CUFF IT, Beyoncé arguably ruled 2022 as the undisputed queen of pop. Sure, Harry Styles had more singles, as did Ed Sheeran, but Queen B has a regality, a pedigree, and a seasoned professionalism that just leaves so many of her peers eating her dust... can you tell I've been listening to RENAISSANCE a lot lately?
This song is an odd one to see chart though. I mean it's not the strongest hook on the album, the beat can be best described as threateningly 80s, between the synths, the confrontational lyrics - she flat out says that she rolls with goons - and it's one of the less feel-good moments on the album... hence the title, I suppose. Now, that's not to say it's bad at all, in fact I think it's pretty damn good, especially in the way it uses backing vocals. I just think Virgo's Grooe or Cozy are more obvious choices to have chart, that's all.
That being said, this week was pretty great, where I didn't outright dislike any of the new arrivals. So I am giving the Worst of the week to Pretty Boys by Caity Baser, but just know it's more the default pick, I don't hate it anywhere near as much as my pick last week. Funnily enough, Best of the week, meanwhile, is going to TDQ by KAROL G & Shakira, more of that, please!
Seems like whenever the main chart is quiet, the Homegrown Charts gets busy, and vice-versa:
1. Heaven - Niall Horan [LW: 1 / WOC: 2]
2. One Life - Dermot Kennedy [LW: #2 / WOC: 13]
3. Superstar - Belters Only (Ft. Simone Denny) [LW: - / WOC: 13]
4. Perfect - Moncrieff [LW: 7 / WOC: 7]
5. If You're Gonna Break My Heart - Inhaler [LW: - / WOC: 3]
6. Time To Leave - Darren Kiely [LW: 6 / WOC: 7]
7. Chasing Rainbows - High Kings [LW: - / WOC: 1]
8. Northside Arse - Versatile [LW: 8 / WOC: 4]
9. We Are One - Wild Youth [LW: #9 / WOC: 5]
10. My Very Best - The Academic [LW: 10 / WOC: 6]
Only 1 brand new entry to the Top 10 in Chasing Rainbows, while Superstar and If You're Gonna Break My Heart both returned to replace other singles by the same bands... and I can't say I'm happy about either of them.
Still, for my thoughts on those 2 and much more, check out my video series National Treasures over on Instagram, go follow me @thesocialtune to hear my full thoughts. If i haven't reviewed a song on here yet, I will soon. And if you want a sneak peek at what hit the chart this week:
Title: Chasing Rainbows by High Kings
Title: Stay A While by SIIGHTS
Again, for my thoughts on these songs and more, simply head over to my Instagram @thesocialtune, where I will be reviewing EVERY SONG that hits the Homegrown Top 20 over the course of 2023! SO far I've got a backlog filmed and ready in the chamber, so stay tuned!
As always, let me know in the Comments what you thought of the songs covered this week, and leave a Like if you enjoyed! Please make sure to follow me everywhere so you don't miss a thing, and Subscribe to the blog to keep up with my weekly chart reflections. Stay safe and happy everyone and until the next time, I'm Fionn and this is The Social Tune signing off!