RADIO REPORT: POP! Goes The Picks (February 2015)

It’s time once again to analyze those airwaves and find out if your favorite songs will be lighting up the national charts in 2015. What singles will climb to the top and which ones will hit a stop? Here are some of the new songs being serviced in February on the AAA, Alternative, CHR and Hot AC formats in this month’s Radio Report:

CHR (*) and HOT AC (**)

Charli XCX
CHARLI XCX featuring RITA ORA – “Doing It” (February 3) (*)
Label: Atlantic/RRP
A little extra girl power is never a bad option, and so Ora joins in on this already fun track from the Sucker album, due in several European territories in about two weeks. Hopefully this will be “doing” better than “Break The Rules” very soon.

Echosmith
ECHOSMITH – “Bright” (February 3) (*)
Label: Warner Bros.
The “cool kids” of the Sierota family are looking to prove they’re still popular with pop radio program directors on their latest single from Talking Dreams. Co-written by MoZella, this stripped down song shows the quartet has versatile taste.

Sam Smith
SAM SMITH – “Lay Me Down” (February 3) (*)
Label: Capitol
Smith’s third CHR radio single from In The Lonely Hour is kind of a puzzling choice considering that it was originally out in 2013 and “Like I Can” just went top ten in Europe. However, the singer’s Grammy hype will push the track up quickly.

Ariana Grande
ARIANA GRANDE – “One Last Time” (February 10) (*)
Label: Republic
With a title that sounds so, well, final, the My Everything era may be coming to an end after its fourth official single. The release follows “Love Me Harder”, which recently broke the top 3 at CHR radio. Will Grande’s era go out on a high note?

Fancy Hagood
FANCY – “Goodbye” (February 10) (*)
Label: Big Machine/Republic
Though the label seems invested in a mysterious campaign, Jake “Fancy” Hagood has been known in Nashville for some time now and has a few cuts that have been recorded. As a pop newcomer on a country label, this is one release to watch.

Gorgon City
GORGON CITY featuring JENNIFER HUDSON – “Go All Night” (February 10) (*)
Label: Priority/Capitol
The English duo’s Sirens album has given them four top 40 hits in a row in the United Kingdom, the one being their most recent with a #14 peak. Hudson’s never been huge with CHR radio, but this 90’s house record is worthy of charting here.

Madonna
MADONNA – “Living For Love” (February 10) (*)
Label: Interscope
Leaked onto the internet a few months ago and then released with an album pre-order for Rebel Heart in late December, “Living” is finally being serviced to radio this month, though it may be too late to receive the “Love” it desires. We’ll see.

Sia
SIA – “Elastic Heart” (February 10) (* + **)
Label: RCA
It’s the second time around for “Elastic” at radio, which initially garnered some pop play when it was featured in the film The Hunger Games – Catching Fire. Thanks to a new video clip and set of unusual performances, it’s buzzing once again.

Ryn Weaver
RYN WEAVER – “OctaHate” (February 24) (*)
Label: Interscope
Weaver’s first single was a huge streaming hit and exploded in the blogosphere thanks to several high-profile plugs. Now is the time for the American public to get behind the track and make the performer one of 2015’s big national breakouts.

ALTERNATIVE (*) and AAA (**)

Death Cab For Cutie
DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE – “Black Sun” (February 3) (* + **)
Label: Atlantic
Since we last saw the Washington band, they’ve lost a longtime member, but they are gaining very nicely at several radio formats thanks to a strong comeback single. “Sun” will be shining in the top ten at both Alternative and AAA this month.

The Mowgli's
THE MOWGLI’S – “I’m Good” (February 3) (* + **)
Label: Photo Finish/Republic
Two years ago, the group from California made their mark on the Alternative survey with “San Francisco”, breaking the top 20 in spring 2013. Back from the jungle and swinging swiftly from station to station, the septet is ready to roar again.

Ásgeir
ÁSGEIR, “Torrent” (February 10) (**)
Label: Columbia
The country of Iceland has given us some pretty unique artists over the years and this 22-year-old is no exception. He is following up “King And Cross”, which received some minor AAA play, but this epic single will certainly do some damage.

Colony House
COLONY HOUSE – “Second Guessing Games” (February 10) (*)
Label: Descendant
The Tennessee rock trio went to radio last fall with “Silhouettes”, peaking just beneath the top 40 at Alternative, but the second single from their When I Was Younger set is just as great. This House is only getting settled in the neighborhood.

Fall Out Boy
FALL OUT BOY – “Uma Thurman” (February 10) (*)
Label: Island/Republic
This tune is like, totally psychedelic, man. Making creative use of the theme from the classic TV show The Munsters, the next radio single from American Beauty/American Psycho is ready for more crossover gains. Can someone say Smash?

In The Valley Below
IN THE VALLEY BELOW – “Peaches” (February 10) (*)
Label: Capitol/Caroline
The duo of Angela Gail and Jeffrey Jacob are new to the radio scene, though they’ve been performing together for many years. After building up press and additional mixes in the past year and a half, these “Peaches” are now ripe for spinning.

Saint Motel
SAINT MOTEL – “My Type” (February 10) (*)
Label: Elektra/RRP
Last summer, “Type” was a minor top 40 single in the United Kingdom, but it quickly faded away. Luckily, the energetic sound is back thanks to the new Stateside release and a solid base of Alternative stations playing it. Those horns are hot!

Alabama Shakes
ALABAMA SHAKES – “Don’t Wanna Fight” (or) “I Don’t Want To Fight No More” (February 17) (* + **)
Label: ATO
I’ve seen both titles listed for this release, but regardless of which one is used, the quartet from the Heart of Dixie will be pumping out the new jams this spring, including a forthcoming album in April. Guess we will have to “Hold On” for more.

Fences
FENCES – “Sunburns” (February 24) (*)
Label: Elektra/RRP
The band led by singer and songwriter Christopher Mansfield released “Arrows” as a single last year, but it failed to take off with an audience here. After an album delay multiple times both this and last year, Lesser Oceans is out on March 10.

Which songs would you like to see do well from the list above? Let me know! Comment below or click the “Get Social!” tab to find PGTC on social media.

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