It’s that time again. Time to engage in our culture’s most sacred end-of-year tradition, the “United State of Pop” pop music mashup. Each year the aply named DJ Earworm descends from his icy mountain stronghold to bestow upon the world a flawless remix of the year’s biggest pop songs and music videos, distilling a year of pop into one perfect artifact. Not only is usually a certifiable jam unto itself, but the mashup serves as a measurement of the pop climate for the previous year. Everything you need to know about the Top 40 from popular beats to inescapable themes all wrapped up in one convenient package.
The beauty of the United State of Pop remix is that it gives us a chance to reflect on everything that’s happened this year in pop. For instance, did you know that “Let It Go” came out earlier this year and not 3300 years ago during the reign of Pharaoh Ramses II as it sometimes seems? There’s also always the odd omission. This year Sia’s ubiquitous hit “Chandelier” didn’t make the cut despite receiving heavy radio play since last spring, and in 2013 the surprise Anna Kendrick hit “Cups” failed to make an appearance. Overall, despite a handful of imperfections, it’s a catchy look at the musical zeitgeist of the year gone by and the perfect thing to get you in the mood for year-end list season!