Thursday, February 28, 2013

Throwback Thursday: Tommy Picks the Best of Britney, Part 2

Living legend, you can look but don't touch.
A few months ago, I attempted to condense Britney's vast and inspiring career into a list of her ten best singles. It was an incredibly difficult undertaking, to say the least, but it proved every bit as enlightening as it did daunting. As it stands, I think my list should be used as the golden standard for Britney's best singles.

But while songs like "Toxic" and "...Baby One More Time" are practically synonymous with the Queen of Pop's name, the simple truth is that Britney's career reaches far deeper than what you hear on the radio. Some of her best songs never get released as singles. So here, on this lovely Thursday, let's throw it back to the Best of Britney, Part 2: The Non-Singles. Like the first list, this wuddn't easy. But as a true Britneyologist, I was up for the challenge!

10. "Out From Under"
Over time, Britney's music has become considerably more synthesized. So when an acoustic gem like "Out From Under" pops up, Britney fans tend to hold it in high regard. The Circus track alludes to the singer's marriage to K-Fed, which we all know was not a cute situation. Still, it's nice to hear a vulnerable Britney express pain over the divorce. (You'll hear another attitude regarding the same subject later on the list.)

9. "What U See (Is What U Get)"
Even in her teens, Britney didn't put up with anybody's bullshit, and that's especially true for girls. In "What U See (Is What U Get)", the only Oops!... I Did It Again track to make the list, Britney tells her lover to take her as she is or gtfo. Such inspiration! I'm assuming the dude finally embraced Britney for who she is.

8. "Kill the Lights"
Circus is probably one of Britney's most controversial albums, not because of its thematic content, but because the public seemed to love it, while hardcore Britney fans rank it as one of her worst albums. When I think of Circus, I think of all the wasted opportunity for potential singles. "Kill the Lights", which tackles Britney's favorite theme of the downside of fame, is one of those songs that shoulda been a single but wasn't. I hope to rectify that injustice with its inclusion on this list.

7. "Shadow"
Britney ballads are so few and far between these days. Luckily, her earlier albums had plenty of slow jams to satisfy my need. "Shadow" is one of the few songs on In the Zone that doesn't have Britney singing about masturbation with disturbing breathing noises in the background. Instead, the song describes an emotionally absent lover, which is a refreshing change of pace for Brit.

6. "Freakshow"
"Make 'em clap when we perform," Britney sings in "Freakshow", a song that seems to be about getting a little too nasty on the dance floor. The Blackout track is often credited as being the first pop song to introduce dubstep into mainstream music. So, if you like dubstep, you can thank Brit; if you don't, you can't blame Brit. You just can't.

5. "Hot As Ice"
It's hard to describe Britney Spears. She just IS. However, I think this song does the best job at summing her up: she's cold as fire, hot as ice. And there's a fun black chorus singing in the background. "Holla if you hear me! Can I get a witness?"

4. "Inside Out"
Femme Fatale is an incredibly diverse album. Some songs are about sex with bad boys, some songs are about sex in clubs, and some songs are about sexual fetishes. "Inside Out" is about break-up sex and features fun references to past hits "...Baby One More Time" and "(You Drive Me) Crazy".

3. "Why Should I Be Sad"
Here's another take on the whole Britney/Kevin Federline break-up. "Why Should I Be Sad" chronicles the downfall of their relationship and paints K-Fed as a gold-digging philanderer. All the while, Britney wonders why she should cry over the end of a marriage that was pretty shitty to begin with. Psh, and she said she wasn't going to have any personal songs on Blackout. #girlplease

2. "Cinderella"
When Britney was not a girl, not yet a woman, she tried really hard to shred her family-friendly image (if it was ever there to begin with). She started the transition with the album Britney, which included songs like "Cinderella" that established her independence.

1. "How I Roll"
Femme Fatale is far more creative than people give it credit for, and songs like "How I Roll" exemplify this like no other. It's quite possibly the funnest song of all time. With lyrics like, "I wanna go/Downtown where my posse's at/Because I got/Nine lives like a kitty cat," it's bubbly, non-nonsensical, and pure bliss.

Voila. There you have it. The best Britney songs that many of you may not have heard. But this is just the tip of the iceberg, folks. I implore you all to check out the rest of Britney's albums for yourselves and you will discover a musical goldmine worth millions.


Taylor Tanton said...

"How I Roll" finally earning its due

Anonymous said...

YES!!! The more I read your blog the more I find I agree with you. How I Roll is utter bliss. My favorite Britney track of all time, hands down!