10. Måns Zelmerlöw – Barcelona Sessions
Released at the very beginning of the year, this exquisite album has not a single bad track on it. The album isn’t the typical EDM influenced dance pop Flopstar Blog is known for praising, but rather a subtle and mature adult contemporary record that comes across like a quality Ronan Keating solo album. Every track is gorgeous and tender, and Måns’s vocals really elevate the material.
9. Iggy Azalea – The New Classic
“Bounce,” “Fancy,” “Black Widow” and “Fuck Love” are all some of my favorite songs of 2014. Sure, the album isn’t the second coming of 2Pac, but would I even be interested in that in the first place? Iggy is the Katy Perry of rap; she caters to radio and I love her for that.
8. Jennifer Lopez – A.K.A.
J.Lo is massively underrated in my humble opinion. She is a pop icon, but doesn’t get treated like one. A.K.A. is definitely one of the best and most cohesive pop records of the year. How can you not love “Booty”!?
7. WA$$UP – Showtime (EP)
The twerking K-pop queens turned out an extremely impressive EP this year despite have almost no budget or promotion (or fanbase). With not a single bad song on the entire EP, these girls really need a push by their management so they can get a hit and release another smash record!
6. Various Artists – Eurovision Song Contest Copenhagen 2014
Eurovision’s 2013 album was possibly my least favorite Eurovisions ever, (or since I’ve been familiar with the contest anyway). 2014 brought a plethora of ballads with very few uptempo numbers, but the ballads this year were killer. “Rise Like A Phoenix” and “Undo” were both iconic, and the few uptempo tracks like “Rise Up,” “Mustache,” and the insanely campy “Slavic Girls” were all really good. This might be one of my favorite ESC’s ever.
5. Ace Wilder – Busy Doin’ Nothin’ (EP)
Though she didn’t go off to Eurovision for Sweden (she got 2nd place at Melodifestivalen), Ace Wilder’s EP is exquisite. Each track on the album is fantastic. “Bitches Like Fridays” and “Dressed To Kill” are both good enough to be Rihanna singles. This EP should have taken off more than it did outside of Sweden.
4. Austin Mahone – The Secret
Austin Mahone’s debut album flopping on the charts will haunt me for the rest of my life. The world was just not ready for this collection of late-90’s boyband throwbacks. Austin served BSB “Larger Than Life” realness on every track and the world is a better place for it.
3. Jolin Tsai – PLAY
Queen Jolin never really disappoints, (well besides “Butterfly”), and “PLAY” is so exception. The album is ambitious and features heavy trap influenced songs where Jolin is found rapping like Nicki Minaj, pretty ballads about equality, a highly conceptualized musical theater theme, and the most important collaboration of our time with Namie Amuro. I know I said this exact same sentence after her last album “MUSE” came out, but I honestly don’t see her topping this album.
2. Various Artists – Melodifestivalen 2014
Just like how this years Eurovision Song Contest was one of my all time favorites, so was this years Melodifestivalen. Sure, just like with this years ESC there were some crappy entries, but that is to be expected. The contest is such a highs-vs-lows spectacle, and thankfully the highs really delivered this year. “Love Trigger,” “Busy Doin’ Nothin’,” “Undo,” “Naturally,” “Blame It On The Disco,” the list goes on and on. These will be songs I will be obsessed with for the rest of my life.
1. Far East Mention Mannequins (FEMM) – FEMM-Isation
FEMM’s debut (visual) album “FEMM-Isation” really came out of nowhere and smacked me across the face. A pop record with not a single bad song on it does not come around very often, but a pop record with not even a single average song on it comes around almost never. Pair the next-level production quality with stunning visual, a high concept mannequin shtick, amazing choreography and both girls practically OCD attention to detail, FEMM have created a musical project that I can honestly say makes the pop landscape a better and more interesting place.