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.
LØLØ and Maggie Lindemann: “Debbie Downer”
Last month, singer-songwriter LØLØ made a bold declaration on TikTok: “In 2022 we’re taking sad & weird and making it hot.” True to promise, she teamed up with fellow pop-rocker Maggie Lindemann to create “Debbie Downer,” a catchy, 2000s nostalgia-soaked anthem for anyone who has ever felt like an outsider. Delivered in a cadence that evokes the Clovers and Toros chants from the iconic cheer flick Bring It On, ''Debbie” reclaims insults that LØLØ says she’s had lobbed at her from a former friend. The music video stays true to the cheerleading concept with a gothic twist — complete with black pom poms, combat boots, and lots of attitude. After all, it wouldn’t be “Debbie” if it wasn’t “all black everything sad and weird.” —Farah Zermane
Pusha T: "Diet Coke"
The return of Pusha T comes with a relentless beat that still feels light as air, thanks to production from Ye and 88-Keys. The result is pure Pusha — unsurprising yet exciting as hell. As ever, the YouTube commenters say it better than any of us can: "Pusha the first rapper to rap about coke for 20 years straight and still be flame." —Patrick Hosken
Yena: “Smiley” (ft. Bibi)
Making her highly anticipated solo debut, K-pop soloist Yena (formerly of Iz*One) returns to the scene with “Smiley,” a dynamic and effervescent title track that feels like sunshine on your skin. The bass-heavy melody is perfectly layered with synth, creating an electrifying melody that feels retro, yet current. “Smiley” features everyone’s favorite K-R&B it girl, Bibi, whose sultry vocals provide a dark contrast to Yena’s bright and bubbly pop sound, further adding texture to the track. The accompanying visual perfectly matches “Smiley”’s vibrant energy, utilizing colorful sets, creative styling, and animated elements to make the song truly come to life. Though this is definitely not Yena’s debut, it does mark the start of a new and exciting chapter for her. —Sarina Bhutani
FKA Twigs: “Honda” (ft. Pa Salieu)
The most descriptive verb to describe “Honda,” wherein FKA Twigs and British rapper Pa Salieu trade barbs about their financial and sexual prowess while smoking a blunt and speeding down the highway, is to say it slithers. These three minutes of simmering, slinky swag that glides and thumps and clicks and and stutters and repeats chants in all the right places, like a confident python that doesn’t strike, but still bares its fangs. —Terron Moore
Joywave: "Goodbye Tommy"
"Goodbye Tommy," a sepia-toned cut from Joywave's new album Cleanse (out today), feels like an end-of-summer serenade. A certain longing colors the melody, and the synthetic drums and icy keyboards evoke the pop-sheen heartbreak supermarket soundtracks the band and I all heard growing up in Rochester. "Goodbye Tommy," however, backs away from melodrama, reveling in grandeur and a sense that this will all be over soon. —Patrick Hosken
Madison Rose: “Better Off Alone”
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Madison Rose, a viral force in the queer music dance scene, has just released your new favorite self-love anthem, “Better Off Alone.” There’s a hint of 2010s electronic synth as Rose relives a fresh breakup: “And I might miss your hand in mine / That don’t make it right.” If you find yourself recently single, don’t fall down that rabbit hole romanticizing everything that was “good” with them. Be sure to also remember all the reasons why you’re definitely “better off alone.” —Daniel Head
Ed Sheeran: “Bad Habits” (ft. Bring Me the Horizon)
I am writing this Bop Shop entry because someone needs to publicly ask for a studio version of Ed Sheeran and Bring Me the Horizon’s unexpected but electrifying recent BRIT Awards performance. It’s too good to not live on the streaming services. The two radically different acts shocked fans across the musical spectrum when they teamed up for a heavy rendition of Sheeran’s 2021 pop earworm “Bad Habits.” The action-packed performance featured Ed on electric guitar and Oli Sykes’s signature screams as dancers flipped and contorted onstage and in the air. It was an incredibly fresh take on a song that’s lived on the charts and in our heads for the better part of a year. —Farah Zermane
"Snake," the pensive new cut from Philadelphia's Sadurn, is made for long drives. Though it's from the mind of East Coast songwriter Genevieve DeGroot — who delivers "I know my fault is that I speak every damn thought in my mind" with plenty of pathos — the ramshackle folky song feels pure Pacific Northwest: rainy, melancholy, yet positively humming with energy. —Patrick Hosken
If you haven’t noticed Oneus already, I would low-key in the most friendly way ask, “Where have you been?!” Debuting in 2019, the sextet is now poised to be a staple of your K-pop playlist. Their viral hit, “Luna,” pays homage to traditional Korean sound and can also get anyone up and out on the dance floor. Be sure to catch them on their Blood Moon tour in a city near you between February and March. You won’t regret it. —Daniel Head