“Fall in Love With the Enemy” - MNDRPlayed 50 times.
“Jump In” - MNDRPlayed 9 times.
“Bang Bang Bang” - Mark Ronson and the Business Intl. feat. Q-Tip & MNDRPlayed 79 times.
45. Sounds from Nowheresville - The Ting Tings
On October 12th, 2010, The Ting Tings unveiled the lead single for their upcoming album. “Hands” saw the group fully embracing the 80’s indietronica/New Wave sound that was so ubiquitous in their debut album. Fast forward to February 2012, most of their sophomore album was made from scratch after dumping over half the album. What ended up being released was a haphazard collection of songs that are so immediately grating that it’s hard to think of their first album as anything more than a fluke. The extremely disappointing sophomore LP was created as a response to the record company actually liking the original record they presented. So, in that respect, I’m sure The Ting Tings succeeded. That is, in pissing off their record company. And plenty of fans as well.
Listen to: Hang It Up, Hit Me Down Sonny
44. Lotus - Christina Aguilera
Lotus was an important release for Christina because it followed the flop-tastic LP that was Bionic. Unfortunately for her, she managed to make a record that topped her last one in terms of messiness and unoriginality. Lotus consists of a set of extremely safe pop songs that is extremely derivative of current pop trends. At least Bionic attempted to be daring, Lotus just seemed like Christina finally gave up on music.
Listen to: Red Hot Kinda Love, Circles
43. MDNA - Madonna
Madonna’s biggest problem has always been her inability to grow up and just accept her age. MDNA shows that she has no plan on changing that and as a result, we are serviced a set of bland, unoriginal pop numbers that seem more suited for a cheap R&B singer (read: Ciara) than the Queen of Pop. Lacking in innovation or even just excellence in general, MDNA was a flop for the ages.
Listen to: I Fucked Up, B-Day Song
42. The Spirit Indestructible - Nelly Furtado
Nelly Furtado had such an unfortunate year. Between “Big Hoops” flopping hard and her album flopping even harder, it’s almost easy to feel bad for her. But, then you listen to The Spirit Indestructible and you realize that the flopping is a good punishment for an honestly horrendous album. Nelly sounds terribly nasally on the album, specifically on the tracks that are supposed to be throwbacks to Loose-era Nelly (“Spirit Indestructible”, “Something”). It’s sad really because the back half of the album shows her embracing her roots, the folk-pop side of her and she’s never sounded better. Maybe it’s time that she revisit her roots and she let go of her pop star aspirations.
Listen to: Circles, Believers (Arab Spring)
41. Paradise - Lana del Rey
The Paradise EP saw Lana del Rey returning to form and languidly reprising the 50’s Americana themes that she so heavily centers her image around. Born to Die felt so inspired because it was the first time we heard that type of material and the album was balanced out by some truly anthemic moments (i.e. “National Anthem”). This time around, I honestly just felt fatigued. The entire thing sounds as though it was penned by Tumblr hipsters.
Listen to: Ride, Burning Desire
40. 18 Months - Calvin Harris
18 months is how long Calvin Harris took to put this collection of songs together. And in that time frame, it seems as though he might have been robbed of all personality that actually made him distinct and interesting in the first place. In fact, he makes no vocal appearance outside of one song. The rest of the album sees Calvin Harris taking a back seat to a talented set of performers, but who are then laid over some truly uninspired house tracks. Where is the cheekiness, quirk and catchiness Calvin possessed in his earlier albums?
Listen to: Bounce, Thinking About You
39. Halcyon - Ellie Goulding
While Ellie Goulding might have stated that Skrillex had no effect on her music, it’s hard to listen to Halcyon and take that seriously. The music, which is parts Florence, part Skrillex, is so jarring that it’s hard to take in any of her lyrics. Which you might actually not want to do anyway since it’s so amateurishly written that you have to wonder if Ellie just ripped every song from a diary she kept as a teenager. And then there’s the fact that her frail, thin voice is no match for the grand nature of the songs.
Listen to: Don’t Say a Word, Figure 8
38. Kiss - Carly Rae Jepsen
I almost feel bad putting Carly Rae this low on the list, but Kiss was so sugary I feel as though it might have immediately given me diabetes. The pop songs are so sugar-sweet that they just feel inappropriate, especially seeing as Carly is 27 years old. I would hope that she does not view life in such a naive fashion. While some of the songs do show some inspiration, she would do well with some more mature songwriting and creativity, and less sugary-pop.
Listen to: Tiny Little Bows, Curiosity, Tonight I’m Getting Over You
37. Feed Me Diamonds - MNDR
While Feed Me Diamonds is not a bad album per se, it’s not the most compelling one either. MNDR’s debut LP features an extensive array of chic electronica that stays so classy that it’s almost sedate. For a set of dance tracks, it’s surprisingly boring and hard to get into. The tracks sound so muddled and fuzzy that it’s hard to find any hooks. Overall the album is a very dull, rarely engaging experience.
Listen to: Feed Me Diamonds, Sparrow Voices
“Sparrow Voices” - MNDRPlayed 39 times.
“Bang Bang Bang” - Mark Ronson and the Business Intl. featuring MNDR & Q-Tip
I didn’t know Dianna Agron introduced people to this song, but this was one of my favorite songs off of Record Collection. Plus, Mark Ronson is just amazing in general, so yeah.