Let's check out Billboard's Digital Songs chart, which tracks the most-downloaded songs in all genres. Should make for some interesting diversity, right? No! Actually, it's all the same crap from the Hot 100 in a slightly different order.
1. PINK, "F**KIN' PERFECT"
If Pink feels the need to devote such a huge, lugubrious anthem to reassuring us that we're not as worthless as we think we are . . . my God, we must be huge, awful losers. She already told us we were freaks and underdogs in "Raise Your Glass," and I'm beginning to suspect she's trying to screw with our minds. "Nobody will ever love you but me," she's telling us.
2. WIZ KHALIFA, "BLACK AND YELLOW"
This one had a great run, but it'll likely drop off pretty soon. It now carries the stink of defeat, which is an odor incompatible with stunting.
3. BRUNO MARS, "GRENADE"
Glad this wasn't some Jersey Shore shit. Instead, it's a touching ode to self-harm, suicide, and super-intense romantic ultracreepiness: "I'd catch a grenade for you/Throw my hand on a blade for you/Jump in front of a train for you."
4. PITBULL FEAT. T-PAIN, "HEY BABY (DROP IT TO THE FLOOR)"
The good news is that this is pretty much exactly what you think it is; the bad news is that it's not half as good as you hoped. The calls to drop it to the floor and shake it just don't seem sincere — they're mechanical and abstract, as if T-Pain didn't even know what it means anymore. I'm just not believing it. If these two guys can't sell the idea that they want to see women shake their asses, they must really be phoning this one in.
5. ENRIQUE IGLESIAS FEAT. LUDACRIS & DJ FRANK E, "TONIGHT (I'M LOVING YOU)"
Call me crazy, but I actually prefer this cleaned-up version. The original track is "Tonight I'm Fucking You," which had the opposite problem from the T-Pain joint I just reviewed — I truly feared that Enrique was gonna take a run at me as soon as I turned my lights off.
6. KATY PERRY, "FIREWORK"
Hey Katy, why don't you and Pink go have a good cry together and talk about how special everyone is and how okay everything is going to be if everyone just be's themself.
7. DIDDY/DIRTY MONEY FEAT. SKYLAR GREY, "COMING HOME"
Diddy involved; did not listen.
8. FAR*EAST MOVEMENT FEAT. RYAN TEDDER, "ROCKETEER"
After these dudes made "Like a G6," you'd expect a song called "Rocketeer" to be an even nutser jaunt into the stratosphere, right? Well, no. It's actually just the worst.
9. THE BLACK EYED PEAS, "THE TIME (DIRTY BIT)"
Here's an unembellished factual account of this track. It seems to begin as a literal cover of "(I've Had) the Time of My Life." A funny voice goes "dirty bit," and it drops into goofy electro-house, we get an identikit party-freak verse, then everyone yells "I'm! Having! A good! Time! With you!" and it's back to "Time of My Life." Repeat. That's it; that's the song. Critics have accused the Black Eyed Peas of shameless pandering, but why shouldn't a pop group tailor their tracks to please as many people as possible? The Peas know what they're doing; they make idiotic, terrible songs because their audience consists largely of terrible idiots. But I fear they've gone too far this time — this track is so deliberately, meticulously moronic that fans may begin to suspect they're being made fun of.