It’s always the quiet ones that surprise you the most.

On June 5, Girls Aloud‘s Nicola Roberts steps out on her own with her debut solo single, “Beat Of My Drum.”

“Beat of My Drum” is, without question, the coolest post-Aloud effort to date: Produced by Diplo and French producer Dimitri Tikovoi, the song is a playful blend of some of indie-pop’s finest enfants terribles, fitting snugly between the militant dance beats of M.I.A. and the glitchy, monotone speak-song of Uffie.

“L! O! V! E! Dance to the beat of my drum!” Roberts playfully commands during the chorus, unleashing her inner cheerleader. Yet the song is completely erratic (in a brilliant way), bouncing glibly between its manic “Pon de Floor” (Major Lazer)-like beats and frenzied stutters: The chanted chorus is wildly different from the too-cool-for-school spoken verses, which have absolutely nothing to do with the cooed bridge. And don’t forget the almighty beat breakdown toward the end!

Whereas Beyoncé fell short with “Run The World (Girls)” by fault of uninspired imitation, Nicola’s offering only improves upon Diplo’s original blueprints, resulting in a weird, wonderfully left-of-center pop single: It’s fresh, fun and terribly exciting.

With just one single, Roberts has already rendered every other Aloud member’s solo endeavors utterly irrelevant. “Beat Of My Drum” is a definite contender for one of the year’s best singles, and an immensely promising first taste of Roberts’ forthcoming debut album, Cinderella’s Eyes.

Team Ginger, forever and always.

“Beat Of My Drum” will be released at June 5. (Pre-order on iTunes UK)