The search for the ever-elusive “bop” is difficult. Playlists and streaming-service recommendations can only do so much. They often leave a lingering question: Are these songs really good, or are they just new?
Enter Bop Shop, a hand-picked selection of songs from the MTV News team. This weekly collection doesn’t discriminate by genre and can include anything — it’s a snapshot of what’s on our minds and what sounds good. We’ll keep it fresh with the latest music, but expect a few oldies (but goodies) every once in a while, too. Get ready: The Bop Shop is now open for business.
Emeline: “Cinderella’s Dead”
Here is the bad-bitch anthem you need to stand up to anyone and everyone. Emeline’s new single, “Cinderella’s Dead,” will give you the confidence to be your strongest self. The pop tune has seen viral success on TikTok, where fans have not only related to the lyrics but have used it to create their own videos that tell their stories. Emeline sings, “I was 19 in a white dress when you told me I’m your princess / So I played right into your fantasy / Was your good girl, so I’d sit tight / And if I don’t speak, then we can’t fight / Looked in the mirror, now i can’t believe / I forgot I was a bad bitch, tragic.” The lyrics are catchy enough to stick in your head and remind you to never forget your worth. —Alissa Godwin
Conan Gray: “Memories”
Conan Gray has always had his finger on the pulse of heartbreak, crafting candid and intimate slow jams about unrequited love and splintered romances. His latest song, “Memories,” is no exception, painting a vivid picture of an ex-lover showing up like “a wet dog” just as he was getting ready to move on. “You’re all drunk in my kitchen / Curled in the fetal position / Too busy playing the victim / To be listening to me when I say / I wish that you would stay in my memories,” he sings on the track’s pleading chorus. This refrain is as addictive as a toxic relationship, and we’ll surely hear more bummed-out anthems on his sophomore album Superache, which is due out June 24. —Carson Mlnarik
Happy Greek Easter this weekend! Want to add a track to your holiday playlist that will make your yia yia blush? Try this summery, sizzlingly hot single from Greek-American singer Evangelia. Her sultry voice floats over traditional mandolin strumming to provide an excellent background for a chill night in with your bae or a sexy slow dance with a perfect stranger on the dance floor. The artist beautifully tributes her roots with this banger, and to that I say, “Opa!” —Zach O’Connor
Aleyna Tilki: “Take It Or Leave It”
Fueling my recent obsession with fusion, 22-year old singer Aleyna Tilki is taking us to Turkey. The semi-finalist from the sixth season of Yetenek Sizsiniz Türkiye, which is the Turkish version of America’s Got Talent, is roaring into spring with an anthem that fuses pop and early aughts punk-rock nostalgia. I’m fully into it, motorcycles, guitar riffs, and all. —Zach O’Connor
Royal & the Serpent: “Happier in Hell”
Ryan Santiago, better known as Royal & the Serpent, is honest about her mental health in “Happier in Hell.” The track is a thoughtfully candid reflection on depression, addiction, stigma, and more. “I don’t need your help / You can keep the Pelotons and cleanses to yourself,” the 27-year-old singer croons. “I’m glad it’s going well / But I’ve been to heaven, it’s happier in hell.” The raw displays of emotion in the song and its music video point out how perfectly curated Instagram feeds continue to mask a worsening youth mental health crisis. —Farah Zermane
Mehki Clay: “Waiting 4 You”
You might have seen Mehki Clay spearheading viral dances on TikTok, but “Waiting 4 You” marks the debut single from the emerging R&B artist. While the lyrics tell the story of the longing emotions one feels when wanting their partner to commit, the catchy beat is the perfect melody to keep you grooving and cruising all summer long. Clay sings, “Waited so long for us to be something / Guess I know it now / Because waiting for you is like rain in drought.” And yes, that line is very much inspired by Hilary Duff’s iconic Cinderella Story monologue. —Alissa Godwin
With the release of their English single “Darl+ing”, K-pop band Seventeen prove their music transcends far beyond the confines of language. The first single off their upcoming album, Face the Sun, the romantic and delicate electro-pop track details the universal feeling of longing for one’s true love. “You know without you, I’m so lonely,” the group harmonizes at the chorus. “When you’re not here, 911 calling.” Accompanied by a dreamy, pastel-hued music video, “Dar+ling” features each member in their best light, as they prepare to release the album on May 27. —Sarina Bhutani
Lizzo: “About Damn Time”
The superstar and host of Amazon Prime’s Watch Out for the Big Grrrls, Lizzo is continuing her rise in the bop pantheon with her latest disco-fueled single “About Damn Time.” The uplifting, positive, and undeniably fun track will put a smile on your face and a spring in your step to accomplish whatever you need to — and right on schedule. “It’s about damn time I feel better, it’s about damn time we get out this pandemic. It’s about damn time we to get the first Black female Supreme Court Justice,” she told Apple Music’s Zane Lowe ahead of her Saturday Night Live appearance earlier this month. “There’s so many things. It’s about damn time we popped the champagne. It’s about damn time the tequila got here.” Cheers to that! —Zach O’Connor