In case you haven’t already noticed, Ariana Grande is being positioned as pop’s biggest thing in 2014 — whether you stan or not.
From her inescapable, horn-heavy summer hit “Problem” with Iggy Azalea, to her feature-filled upcoming sophomore album My Everything, which even boasts an assist from The Weeknd (WHAT?!), to a 3-way Max Martin-produced upcoming end-of-summer anthem with Nicki Minaj and former bisexual Jessie J, to her very own sponsored one-day resuscitation of MTV’s TRL (rebranded Total Ariana Live) this evening, they’ve funneled just about every possible resource into The Grande Machine.
Therefore, it’s really no surprise that her latest single “Break Free,” produced by Zedd, is a surefire smash too.
“I only wanna die alive/Never by the hands of a broken heart,” Ariana solemnly swears toward the beginning of her dance floor emancipation anthem, punctuated by some nice Mariah-lite “hoo!” moments. And then it comes — the part when she breaks free: “THIS IS…THE PART WHEN…I BREAK FREE!” Ariana almightily declares before a blast of dizzying electronic beats. It’s a euphoric, undeniably catchy floor-filler from start to finish.
Yet it also sounds rather familiar. Why? Because the song is essentially a slightly harder-edged offering from Carly Rae Jepsen‘s criminally underrated 2012 record Kiss — think the lovechild of “This Kiss” and “Tonight I’m Getting Over You.” Basically, she’s getting the second hit that the public wouldn’t let Carly Rae have.
There’s absolutely no way that “Break Free” won’t soon shoot straight to #1 on the club charts. And, judging by the initial public reaction, it looks like she’ll be rocketing to the top of the Hot 100 again in no time.
Get ready for a very, very Grande 2014. (But seriously, #JusticeForCarlyRae.)
“Break Free (feat. Zedd)” was released on July 3. (iTunes)