Good MusicNote 2.8 royals LORDE

The tone at the top.

single: “Royals

artist: Lorde

I’m glad to see the pop charts opening up to an international roster of artists. I profiled Swedish DJ Avicii‘s new single yesterday. Today we’re looking at New Zealand’s Lorde and her ubiquitous single “Royals.”

And while it would be easy to play on her native land with a lame “Lorde of the Sings” joke, I prefer to stay on topic and slap her with the dubious title of this year’s Gotye. Once again, a down under artist hits it big with an unlikely, brooding alterna-megahit.

“Royals” is a sullen meditation on how an average endowment of material blessings is preferable, even regal, in its own right. Between this track and “Thrift Shop,” 2013 has shown a pronounced anti-materialistic slant. And it doesn’t seem to matter if you’re riding a goofy hip-hop loop or a dark, head-bobbing beat –the message shines either way.

Somewhere, Neneh Cherry and Suzanne Vega are nodding their heads.

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