Drake, Justin Bieber, Bruno Mars drop new songs: Pay attention

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Be warned, Olivia Rodrigo: Drake is gunning to your spot, and he’s not alone.

“I’m on the new one hundo, numero uno,” the rapper casually boasts in his new single, “What’s Subsequent,” laying declare to the coveted chart place that Rodrigo’s smash “Drivers License” has held for many of 2021.

A cleverly composed energy ballad wealthy with teen melodrama, “Drivers License” has stayed at No. 1 partly due to an absence of great competitors; solely Cardi B’s “Up,” which debuted at No. 2, has come near matching its success with gross sales, streaming and radio play.

However after seven straight weeks with Rodrigo’s single atop Billboard’s Sizzling 100, three pop superstars — every among the many greatest male acts of the final decade — dropped new tunes Thursday that might finish “Drivers License”’s lengthy reign: the aptly titled “What’s Subsequent,” Justin Bieber’s “Maintain On” and Bruno Mars’ “Depart the Door Open.” (Which, if any does, it’d come all the way down to the traction it will get on TikTok.)

Right here’s a take a look at every music and its probabilities of going numero uno — together with the caveat that “Actual as It Will get,” one other just-released reduce by streaming king Lil Child, may upset all of them:

Drake, ‘What’s Subsequent’

The primary of three tracks on a shock EP referred to as “Scary Hours 2,” “What’s Subsequent” has a formidable pedigree: “God’s Plan,” which led Drake’s authentic “Scary Hours” EP in early 2018, entered the Sizzling 100 at No. 1 and remained there for 11 weeks, solely to get replaced by one other Drake music, “Good for What.”

And “What’s Subsequent” — which can or could not seem on Drake’s long-promised “Licensed Lover Boy” LP due someday this yr — actually sounds assured of a repeat efficiency. Over a fuzzy, bleepy video-game beat produced by Supah Mario and Maneesh, the rapper crisply particulars his champion way of life, together with the place he sits at basketball video games (“in a field the place the house owners do”) and the place he gambles in Las Vegas (“within the Wynn, one million in chocolate chips”).

Drake’s bragging — he goes on within the EP’s different two songs, which function Lil Child and Rick Ross — is at all times extra interesting when he softens it together with his humorousness, which occurs right here in a refrain that appears to shed a bit of gentle on how he’s been faring since a latest knee harm: “Nicely, summer season, all I did was relaxation, OK? / And New 12 months’s, all I did was stretch, OK? / And Valentine’s Day, I had intercourse, OK?” OK!

Odds of unseating “Drivers License”: 2/5

Justin Bieber, ‘Maintain On’

A musical casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic, the previous teen-pop heartthrob’s slow-jammy “Adjustments” received misplaced within the shuffle of horrible information final yr (although it did garner a number of nominations at this month’s Grammy Awards).

Because of its underperformance, maybe, Bieber has pivoted away from R&B within the string of singles he’s launched from his upcoming “Justice” album — together with this peppy guitar-based quantity, produced by Andrew Watt and Louis Bell, that evokes Sting and the Police, of all issues.

Lyrically, the singer is assuring a lover that she will be able to depend on him in a disaster; it’s a mild reiteration of the good-guy messaging he already specified by “Holy” and “Anybody.” However “Maintain On’s” music video is a much more dramatic affair, with Bieber as an anguished-looking motorcyclist who’s pushed to rob a financial institution as a result of his girlfriend has most cancers and so they can’t pay her medical payments.

Common healthcare for all, Congresspeople — or else.

Odds of unseating “Drivers License”: 6/1

Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak, ‘Depart the Door Open’

Anybody else neglect what a terrific singer Mars is?

After spending 2020 largely out of view, the artful retro-soul whiz is again with a brand new duo, Silk Sonic, that pairs him with Anderson .Paak, who could lastly get the massive mainstream look he’s been working towards for years.

“Depart the Door Open,” the primary style from an album set to come back out later in 2021, finds Mars in his Spinners/Stylistics bag, flexing that world-class falsetto amid period-perfect studio detailing he oversaw himself. .Paak, in the meantime, will get in shameless however witty wordplay in considered one of his verses: “When you smoke, I received the haze / And should you’re hungry, woman, I received filets.”

Given the variety of songs made by youngsters within the Prime 10 proper now — “Drivers License” together with 24kGoldn’s “Temper” and Lil Tjay’s “Calling My Cellphone” — this proudly adult-minded train poses the least threat to Rodrigo’s standing. However Mars has constructed monster hits from old-school elements earlier than.

Odds of unseating “Drivers License”: 12/1

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