2013 has been a decidedly weird year for pop music. Between Miley's twerking and the horrifying crimes of Ian Watkins, shock and awe have never been far away from the headlines. People who are all about the music can take solace in the fact that there have been some exciting and unusual, if not exactly original, hits in the past 12 months. But what about those of us who are more interested in the wordsmithing that goes on over the top of the beat, but is often ignored? We've put together a list of the 5 worst pop song lyrics of 2013. Do you agree?
1) "You wanna hug me/ Hey hey hey/ What rhymes with hug me?/ Hey hey hey" Robin Thicke - Blurred Lines
That's right. In a song full of offensive, degrading, misogynistic lyrics, this is the worst segment. What rhymes with 'hug me', Mr Thicke? Well it's certainly not 'fuck me', as you seem to be implying. If you imagine that he's actually thinking of 'pug me', and that he likes to go into pet shops, say "Pug me!" to the owner, and then leave with a nice little pug, then it's a bit more bearable.
2) "If this is a dream/ Won't open my eyes/ Am I asleep?/ No I'm alive" - Jessie J - Wild
This self-indulgent lyrical fame-wank is infuriating throughout. But worst of all is this snippet from the chorus, which sounds like a first draft, not something that should have made the final cut. Perhaps they thought no one would care. They were wrong.
3) "But everybody's like Crystal, Maybach, diamonds on your time piece/ Jet planes, islands, tigers on a gold leash/ We don't care/ We aren't caught up in your love affair" Lorde - Royals
As aurally delightful as this song is, using the rhetoric and implied values of hip hop to satirise the rhetoric and implied values of hip hop isn't hugely effective when you're simultaneously reinforcing the same brands as those artists you parody. It's also dampened by the fact that the young singer is a self-proclaimed lover of the aristocracy and the monarchy, as evidenced by her name and the rest of the lyrics for her biggest hit so far. Ayesha A. Siddiqi points out that Lorde is one of the growing number of white artists from privileged backgrounds to disparage hip hop culture without really understanding the underlying socioeconomic circumstances which have lead to its worship of wealth. Although perhaps criticising a 16 year old for lacking self-awareness is like criticising a boat for being too buoyant.
4) "Been around the world, don't speak the language/ But your booty don't need explaining" Jason Derulo - Talk Dirty
Wait, so you've been around the world, and you don't speak any of the languages? Or you think there's some global lingua franca to which you, Jason Derulo, are not privy? Also, a "booty explanation" sounds like a euphemism for farting. Confusing, although admittedly hilarious, lyrics. D-.
5) "My hands were made for somewhere else/ Your eyes are doing naughty butterflies" The Vamps - Can We Dance
This entire song is a train wreck. The chorus includes the line "That's all I have to say so baby can we dance?", as well as a kind of 'you don't have to be crazy to work here, but it helps' mention of the protagonist's friends. But what does 'your eyes are doing naughty butterflies' mean? Sounds like she's rolling them pretty hard at your awful conversation, bro.