Her pipes aren’t exactly the strongest—a fact she’s even admitted—but a chapter from the Britney Spears career book tells you vocal prowess doesn’t make a pop princess: It’s the sheer number of catchy, delectable tracks. And Miss Gomez has those in abundance.
From her earliest records with Selena Gomez & the Scene to her more recent solo endeavors, Selena is a rising pop maestro who deserves the same attention Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande, and even Miley Cyrus receive for their catalogs. In our eyes, Selena’s music is written off as flash-in-the-pan fare to anyone who isn’t a diehard fan. And that’s a travesty of dance-tastic proportions.
We’re making lofty statements, but Selena’s glossy, effervescent discography justifies them. Don’t believe us? Check out these 11 Gomez deep cuts that all but confirm her music is damn good and vastly underrated.
“Stars Dance” (2013)
This tingling slice of dubstep kitsch perfectly captures Selena’s sonic aesthetic: decadent, carefree, and ripe with naughty-girl bombast. The beat is slow and engaging and builds to a subtle, yet billowing, chorus.
“I Won’t Apologize” (2009)
On the opposite side, we have this frothy pop-rock number from SG & the Scene’s 2009 LP Kiss & Tell. In terms of innocent bubblegum cheese, it doesn’t get sweeter than this (that’s right: SWEET CHEESE). “I won’t apologize for who I am,” Selena defiantly croons on this track, an ode to self-acceptance that would make 2001 BritBrit beam with glee.
Speaking of which, Ms. Spears is one of three writers on “Whiplash,” a grinding dance-pop stomper from SG & the Scene’s album When the Sun Goes Down (2011). It’s noticeably harder (and hotter) than Selena’s other tracks—almost a gateway to Stars Dance’s hypnotizing flavor of electro slosh.
“Save The Day” (2013)
Selena’s approach to pop is refreshing because she doesn’t take herself too seriously. No pretense. No fuss. As a result, her tunes are instant, memorable, and cool as hell. Such is the case with “Save the Day,” a song filled with enough zipping beeps to light a theme park. It’s thrilling.
“Write Your Name” (2013)
The icy and desolate verses of “Write Your Name” lead to one of the best pop choruses in recent memory. “Write your name across my heart,” Sel excitedly squeals amidst a euphoric and delirious techno beat. This one is too good.
“My Dilemma” (2011)
The 2.0 version employs a more dance-oriented beat, but the original—and, in our eyes, better—version of “My Dilemma” rivals even Avril Lavigne’s top-tier angry-girl offerings. It’s the kind of pink-punk treat that gets sweeter with every bite.
“Forget Forever” (2013)
How was “Forget Forever” not released as a single? It’s a crime Gomez fans (this writer included) are still mourning. “FF” is the ideal dance-pop track. Trembling verses keep listeners in white-knuckled anticipation before breaking into an other-worldly anthemic chorus—the kind of high you never want to end.
“Music Feels Better” (2013)
She keeps up the momentum with “Music Feels Better,” a bonus track from SD that 100 percent belongs on the standard record. Sel keeps the tempo high and energy even higher in this epic EDM smash dripping—oozing—with candy-glam ecstasy. The, “Music feels better with…YOUUUUU” build-up is better than any orgasm you’ll experience. Guaranteed.
“Summer’s Not Hot” (2011)
Similar to “I Won’t Apologize,” “Summer’s Not Hot” is pulsating Y2K fuzz that gleams with middle school syrup. It sits nicely alongside ’90s Spears staples like “Soda Pop” and “Born to Make You Happy.”
“I Don’t Miss You At All” (2009)
Selena dips into ’80s synth-pop with “I Don’t Miss You At All,” but she adds a heaping amount of pouty lolita fizz to make the song her own.
“Like A Champion” (2013)
This coquettish reggae romp is the gay pride anthem of tomorrow. The mid-tempo beat, which will have your hips shaking in five seconds flat, allows Selena to indulge in plenty of flirtatious wordplay. And we’re happier, sexier people for it.