Is Ava Max Bringing Back Pop Maximalism?

Look at that waveform. It’s absolutely beautiful. You can see the intro, the verses, the choruses, the bridge (!!), and the final chorus all packed into a neat 3:05 package. This is, structurally speaking, a perfect pop song.

This waveform belongs to “Sweet But Psycho” by Ava Max, who is the third Albanian pop singer (??) to hit the North American charts in as many years. There’s not too much info about her online, which leads me to believe that she may be an advanced algorithm rather than a real person. She looks like the sum of all the biggest pop stars put together, and her name sounds like something the writer of a Nickelodeon sitcom would come up with and also a piece of computer software/hardware.

Pair that with this immaculately produced single, and she could very well be a hologram or advanced AI. Which I am totally OK with, because if I haven’t made it clear, I am a fan.

Not of the singer herself. Or even the song. Melodically speaking, it’s not even that great- it reaches a plateau of about 80% and never really kicks into that fifth gear that would make it an indelible pop classic.

No, I’m a fan of the production and what it could potentially mean going forward. If this song blows up and inspires copycats, we could be heading into another golden age of pop. This is a song that picks up right where 2012’s boom left off before “Get Lucky” derailed everything.

Classic song structure. An almost ideal three minute run-time. Pristine texture. Proper verse-chorus dynamics. A bridge. No annoying vocal affectation. No minimalist aesthetic. No rubbery 80s bass. No jangly guitars. No “throwback” retro recording process. Everything about this song was created inside a computer and optimized to hit the synapses in just the right way. It’s exactly what pop music should be in 2019.

If this song does become a legitimate hit and turns Ava Max into a household name it’s a given that she’ll branch out on her full debut and undoubtedly incorporate all the hip modern trends I’ve listed above. Which is why it’s imperative that this song needs to burrow its way into public consciousness and ignite ASAP. We need the big maximalist pop jams of the early ’10s back and we need them now. Ava Max, you’re our only hope. (hologram joke)