Pop singer Britney Spears just released the lead single to her eighth studio album on Sunday. “Work B**ch” finds Spears dabbing in some aggressive EDM. Each of her past seven studio albums have been introduced with iconic and memorable tracks like “...Baby One More Time” and “Gimme More.” With “B**ch” now joining Spears' music canon, we look at where it falls among her lead single releases from the past 15 years.
8. “Me Against the Music” (2003) from “In the Zone”
“Me Against the Music” ushered in Spears' first mature album, 2003's “In the Zone.” Among her lead singles, this one is high profile because Queen of Pop Madonna features on it. The two singers go back and forth about losing it to the music over hip hop beats with a hard dance edge. Despite working with Madonna, the track was overshadowed by innovative follow-up single “Toxic.” It was certainly a treat, though, to hear Britney and Madonna join forces on a single song.
7. “Hold it Against Me” (2011) from “Femme Fatale”
Spears took pop and EDM to the next level on “Hold it Against Me,” the lead single from 2011's “Femme Fatale” album. She dabbed in trance, arguably mainstreamed dubstep and sang over grinding synthesizers on a single track. It was big on production and flirty in terms of lyricism: “If I said I want your body now, would you hold it against me?” she teased. Instead of just riding the radio trend, Spears put her own twist on it with this experimental tune gone right.
6. “Oops!... I Did it Again” (2000) from “Oops!... I Did it Again”
Following her big breakthrough and success with “...Baby One More Time,” Spears had to follow it up with something just as memorable so she released “Oops!... I Did it Again.” The title itself was a risk to take with the possibility of a sophomore slump but Spears took it and indeed “did it again” and then some. Over-the-top Euro-pop beats backed Britney as she let the world know that she was “not that innocent.” She was even able to fit in a reference to “Titanic” that didn't sink the track.
5. “Womanizer” (2008) from “Circus”
2007 was a dark time in Spears life as she struggled with personal problems in front of paparazzi and in the tabloids. The following year, she was able to get her life back on track and record a new album, “Circus.” Her big “comeback” was introduced with “Womanizer,” an electro-pop gem with an urban lean. Spears proved it was a return to form when she dished out lines like “Fakin' like a good one but I call 'em like I see 'em” with no mercy. She cut players and naysayers down to size.
4. “I'm a Slave 4 U” (2001) from “Britney”
Spears successfully transitioned from bright teen-pop to dance floor diva on “I'm a Slave 4 U” from 2001's “Britney.” The slinky and sensual club track was produced by Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo of The Neptunes. Any shred of that innocence left of “Oops!” was shed with her breathy come-ons: “Baby, don't you wanna dance up on me?” Sonically, it was her first foray into a different sound. From there, she would just keep getting ahead of the curve with each subsequent release.
3. “Work B**ch” (2013) from Spears' untitled eighth studio album
Spears just previewed eighth studio album with the awesomely fierce dance track “Work B**ch.” Britney delivers another EDM-inspired single but she injects it with big personality. She promised something very different from what's been done in the past and delivers. Never has Britney been this forward and frank on a single before but she proudly embraces her inner grown woman, saying, "I am the bad b**ch!" Her assertiveness is on the song is fresh and next level Britney.
2. “...Baby One More Time” (1998) from “...Baby One More Time”
“...Baby One More Time” is the song that catapulted a then unknown 16-year-old Britney into music super-stardom with its undeniable pop chorus about being hit by a sign of affection. As soon as those opening piano notes hit the ears, Spears follows it up with her signature pronunciation of the word “baby.” The iconic pop track is usually the first thing that comes to mind anytime Spears' name is mentioned. It paved the way for Spears to release everything else on this list.
1. “Gimme More” (2007) from “Blackout”
As if we didn't already know, Spears playfully opens “Gimme More” with the striking line: “It's Britney, b**ch!” From there, the dark electronic beats set in and Britney's breathy vocals detail a good time in the club. Even when she was experiencing this difficult time in her personal life, we still wanted more from Spears and she certainly delivered with this outstanding lead single from “Blackout.” Britney might have been down but she proved that definitely wasn't out.
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