09 August 2016

Summer Jam 2016 Week 13: Heathen Squad Rolls in Late

So we're a day late. We're bad guys. Stuff comes up. I know you're all waiting patiently for the hottest jams to drop each week, so apologies all around for that. But for real, let's get down to the gritty shit of the jam as we close out the first week of August and rally towards the Final Month of Summer!

Hot Jam of the Week: "Heathens" by twenty one pilots

Twenty one pilots seem to have a single dropping every other week this summer and after "Ride" and "Stressed Out" have become the Imagine Dragons of the modern day with a nice blend of punk pop rock to assault our ears. This track to Suicide Squad (2016) dropped a bit ago, but we pretty much ignored it. Even though the flick got a critical drumming, everyone everywhere went to see it, and the jam is pretty unique and haunting, even if it took me a second to recall what that weird "friends are heathens" song was I kept hearing this week. I bet this could bounce around for the next week or so.

Twice a Day: "Toothbrush" by DNCE

Speaking of pop rock...or maybe this is just pop? DNCE follows up "Cake by the Ocean" with this harmless track about shacking up and moving to that relationship stage where you leave a toothbrush at your lover's domicile. They really remind me of like a 2016-version of Vampire Weekend, except without any of the talent. Don't get me wrong, "Cake by the Ocean" is exceptional, but this is kind of whatever.

Rihanna At it Again: "Sex With Me" by Rihanna

Ah, Track 16 off ANTI, the clincher bonus jam to close out RiRi's fantasmic album. Rihanna's the only artist who has dropped more singles than twenty one pilots this summer, and although none has really caught on, none are as pop-y as "Work," which is kind of the whole point of ANTI. Still, I heard this jam quite a bit this week, and it could gain some steam these last few weeks. It does have an actual hook and thumping hypnotic beat that makes it damned interesting, if not necessarily radio-friendly.

Be Wary: "Dangerous Woman" by Ariana Grande

This is another track that's just sort of hung around for a while and although it's no where near 2014's "Problems," it's a true show that Ariana has got some talent. I don't really think this is the kind of song we're going to have nostaligic callbacks for come 2019, but it does a nice job for now swaying between sultry verses and a rising bridge that crescendos to a really epic chorus.

Cheap Date: "Cheap Thrills" by Sia

This is still my favourite song on the Winner's List, although it wasn't quite as ubiquitous as it once was all those last week ago. It's still made a nice run and any jam that can rule the #1 spot for a bit while also being #1 in my heart has proven itself relevant to the Summer Throne conversation.

Time to Have Sex! "All In My Head (Flex)" by Fifth Harmony ft. Fetty Wap

Fetty's incoherent rap-ramblings have really put this jam over "Work" in my book, as has the bizarre and quasi-non-sexual but also totally sexual lyrics. I like the idea of flexing, impressing, and then getting your hump on, but it's all in their head or something? It's vague enough to invite a lot of airplay while subliminally appealing to our sex-addled brain boxes. The island beat makes it perfect for summer.

She Tellin' Me That: "Don't Mind" by Kent Jones

Once your jam is lip synced by Jimmy Fallon, you know you've made it. This is a huge rise for Kent Jones who has risen from no where-land to this, the highest of peaks. Well, the second highest. It was a close call this week, but it's not totally the Hottest Jam in the Land. Somehow spitting out a ton of different languages and geographic shout-outs still works. This is MIMS all over again.

Down the Well: "Send My Love (To Your New Lover)" by Adele

Adele finally takes over this week as her track has started to gain some significant momentum. I wouldn't call her the end-all of all Summer Digs right now, but it's worth it. The video is hot, the track is hot, and there's no doubt her impressive star and pipes power. I'd call her position pretty tenuous, though, and especially after leaving off the former two dueling powerhouses, JT and Drake this week, if Adele makes a late season run, the game is hers.

Next week...

I've been snubbing the Chainsmokers and Calvin Harris for like four straight weeks. Is it time to just admit they don't really have a shot here, despite being perennial 9 and 10s? I'm into a bit of new Avett Brothers and with the Summer O's in full swing, Katy's "Rise" is starting to creep everywhere. Keep an ear out!

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