Subscriber Account active since. After the band members parted ways, she forged a formidable solo career with three albums: 's "Stars Dance," 's "Revival," and 's "Rare" plus one compilation in , titled "For You". She's also peppered the past few years with dance music collaborations and one-off singles. Insider weighed factors like listenability, lyrical quality, production value, and critic reception to come up with the 10 best and 10 worst songs of the singer's career thus far, including tracks from her latest album.
The beauty of "Lose You to Love Me" is in its raw simplicity and its quiet strength. That she chose a ballad as her comeback anthem, imprudently dropped it in the middle of the week, and it rocketed to No.
The arrangement is minimal, uncomplicated, and serves to spotlight Gomez's intimate lyrics. It's deeply personal and yet, many a heartbreak victim will find themselves in those lines.
As the song builds to its triumphant final chorus, a choir of different Gomez voices begins to swell and take up space, elegantly mirroring the overall theme.
It's like she sought a cavernous solitude and then waited patiently, allowing her thoughts and memories and voices to flourish inside. After the Disney pop of her early career, followed by the former-Disney-star-growing-up-and-embracing-her-sex-appeal vibes of 's "Revival," Gomez captured something entirely fresh and deliciously intriguing with "Bad Liar. That it's sparse, shimmery, and weird is the entire point. As Rolling Stone noted — ranking "Bad Liar" as the 39th best song of the s decade — the song is also a testament to Gomez's finely tuned entourage, her careful selection of collaborators who understand and elevate her strengths.
Recording over an iconic Talking Heads bass line was the brainchild of Julia Michaels, Gomez's most frequent cowriter. The Petra Collins-directed music video was the perfect combination of cheeky and sinister. With "Bad Liar," Gomez's "transformation into an alt-pop provocateur was complete. It sees Gomez both alluring and eerie, batting her eyelashes while she sneers. The song is further strengthened by its spectral, unhinged aesthetics — as if Gomez was born to writhe around on her kitchen floor and stick her tongue in an eyelash curler. The "Virgin Suicides" vibe suits her so well.
We've come to expect former child stars, especially those in the music industry, to assert maturity by embracing sexuality — but Gomez subverts that tradition by giving hers the hint of a horror movie or Shakespearean tragedy. But Gomez doesn't simply weaponize her sexuality and confidence like many pop stars of yore; armed with Max Martin's twinkling production, "Hands to Myself" is a winking power play that makes seduction look fun and effortless. Gomez can't belt the high notes like many of her peers, but "Hands to Myself" illustrates how her feathery swoons and breathy whispers can be just as effective.
And after she spends two minutes making her lover feel like he's in control, toying with his sense of pride, her contradictory admission "I mean I could, but why would I want to?
Notably, this is also Gomez's own favorite song on "Revival" and the noted favorite of Taylor Swift , Gomez's best friend and our generation's preeminent singer-songwriter. Gomez has historically had trouble making non-irritating dance anthems. Much of her early discography was populated by excessive EDM-flavored songs, most of which felt like sequined outfits she was handed to try on. In recent years, she has triumphed when she bucks radio trends and ignores the urge to land on a playlist in a clamoring neon club.
Gomez broke that tradition with "Dance Again," a song explicitly designed to make you want to shimmy and groove, and it does exactly that — not just effectively, but irresistibly. If you don't find yourself at least bopping your head to that sparkling 70s bass line in the chorus, you're probably not much fun at parties.
It's a deliriously pleasant listening experience, to be sure, but perhaps the song's greatest triumph is how it feels like an honest reflection of Gomez's soul — that swirling, starry-eyed ether that has made her one of our most relatable and endearing celebrities. It's difficult to translate that kind of magic into music, and yet she accomplished just that in three minutes and 12 seconds. Gomez delivers a slightly bratty, slightly pained variety of attitude on this post-breakup bop — taking a clear cue from experimental-pop darling Charli XCX, a cowriter and background vocalist on the song.
That "Same Old Love" doesn't blend into "Revival's" track list the album's overall style is a good thing. It proves how she can bend different genres to her will, how malleable her voice can be, and how she's willing to abandon molds and expectations to follow her many-hued artistic instincts.
It ain't me. Gomez lends a sense of authenticity to Kygo's formulaic folk-pop production. Her imperfect voice is actually a strength here: It strains and crackles, lilts and soars, beautifully contrasting the glossy dance floor bait and making you believe every word of her righteous indignation.
As Sal Cinquemani noted for Slant magazine , Gomez is at her best on "Revival" when she reinterprets well-worn pop music tropes with sincerity and self-awareness — that is, an awareness that no human experience is straightforward or correct, that every emotion is muddled by layers and grooves. That strength is expertly illustrated on "Perfect," a song that Gomez described as so deeply personal that she almost left it off the album entirely.
As highlighted in its eclectic karaoke-themed music video , it revels in its own Eurodisco weirdness. Despite the song's ostensibly romantic premise, Gomez sounds almost bored, almost mechanical, and that's what makes it work — it's like a love song, but not quite.
I think this song is supposed to be edgy or tongue-in-cheek or something, but honestly, I can't tell because I can't make it past the first 20 seconds without cringing. Maybe the producers just wanted to throw police sirens and sexual moans into a song and pretend that's somehow empowering. Who can say?
It could also just be a shameless attempt to generate reliable streaming numbers by getting fans to listen to it every year on their birthdays. I mean, I don't know anyone who does that — or listens to this song literally ever — but it's possible. As Gomez tried to prove she could be marketed to older and more mature audiences, she ill-advisedly stuffed her debut solo album with heavy electronic dance music and predictable bass drops — but this song is particularly devoid of creativity and personality.
I had way higher hopes for Selena and her rhyming potential. Adding more synths and extra layers of production does not automatically make an electro-pop song compelling — and in fact, the excessive production here makes it the opposite, giving it a bloated and lazy effect.
Gomez's voice is so over-perfected, especially during her attempt to pseudo-rap in the bridge, that it sounds creepy and distorted. There's nothing authentic or real here. Why would you be "falling hard" for a boy who always tells you lies and intentionally makes you feel crazy? Gomez called "Bang Bang Bang" the most "personal" song on her album. All I hear is an irritating melody reminiscent of "Crazy Frog," some childish bragging about her new boyfriend who apparently used to be a model Sharpay Evans would never deign to sing this song — and we're talking about a woman who unabashedly performed "Humuhumunukunukuapua'a.
Gomez is trying to be a beacon of girl power here, and maybe that resonated at the time with her younger Disney-watching audience.
The implication that we should value substance over looks "I'm no beauty queen, I'm just beautiful me" is immediately overshadowed by a chorus that constantly places importance on adjectives like "perfect" and "pretty. Despite her image as an empowered female role model, empowerment anthems are not Gomez's forte.
This song is an insult to Gomez's iconic stint as an actual blonde. He can really come and get it, anytime, on his own terms, with no conditions or prerequisites? Gomez herself has even disavowed the song: "That's so not my personality," she recently told the Wall Street Journal.
According to Gomez, this was her attempt at "urban music" like "Drake and Rihanna. Literally, what? Who wrote those lyrics and thought, "Yep, those are good"? To make matters even worse, the song doubles down on that offense, as Gomez repeats over and over, "B-b-b-beat in my face. This is an opinion column. The thoughts expressed are those of the author s. Insider logo The word "Insider". Close icon Two crossed lines that form an 'X'.
It indicates a way to close an interaction, or dismiss a notification. A leading-edge research firm focused on digital transformation. World globe An icon of the world globe, indicating different international options. Callie Ahlgrim. Snapchat icon A ghost. She got even more adventurous with "Fetish," giving her pop instincts an evocative edge.
Her breathy vocals are perfect for "Hands to Myself," the ultimate seduction bop. Again, despite an admirable message, "Kill Em With Kindness" is a bad song. Loading Something is loading. Email address.