Global Pop Round-Up: May 2023 Edition

Global Pop Round-Up

The Bias List is a K-pop blog that also covers a fair amount of J-pop. But just like most music fans, I enjoy tracks from all around the world. So, I thought I’d start a monthly round-up of some of the non-K-pop songs that have caught my ear. No ratings — just highlights!

February 2022 Edition // March 2022 Edition // April 2022 Edition // May 2022 Edition // June 2022 Edition // July 2022 Edition // August 2022 Edition // September 2022 Edition // October 2022 Edition // November 2022 Edition // January 2023 Edition // February 2023 // March 2023 // April 2023

Bebe Rexha – Visions (Don’t Go)

Bebe Rexha’s new album is an excellent collection of pop songs and I couldn’t let a Global Pop Round-up go by without featuring this glistening gem.

Becky Hill & Lewis Thompson – Side Effects

That garage sound is so addicting.

Bright Light Bright Light – Boys Etc.

Retro, Pet Shop Boys-esque synthpop with a great chorus.

Conan Gray – Never Ending Song

This is quite a transformation for him and I’m digging the more upbeat, 80’s sound. The video is tons of fun, too.

Dotter – No Room For Love

It’s all about that pummeling, synth-drenched chorus. Absolutely massive.

Honey. – In The End

Blend ABBA-esque, melancholic melody with anthemic power chords and you’d got this timeless standout.

Icona Pop & Yaeger – Shit We Do For Love

It’s nice to hear this brash, bold duo back making dance music! I love the trance influences.


New music from KEiiNO is always worth celebrating!

Kylie Minogue – Padam Padam

I like the catchy electro throb of Padam Padam, but more importantly the previews for Kylie’s upcoming album sound absolutely flawless.

PNAU – Stars (ft. Bebe Rexha & Ozuna)

This is an interesting team of collaborators and another surefire hit for the ever-reliable PNAU.

Rita Ora – Praising You (ft. Fatboy Slim)

As expected, Praising You relies heavily on its sample. But, it’s a welcome dose of upbeat nostalgia.

Switch Disco – React (ft. Robert Miles & Ella Henderson)

A straightforward dance hit that’s deservedly conquering Europe.

Zara Larsson – End Of Time

I don’t like this nearly as much as Can’t Tame Her, but the new album’s shaping up quite nicely.


29 thoughts on “Global Pop Round-Up: May 2023 Edition

  1. What did you think of Eurovision? The top two were so close, I thought it would come down to them. Too bad it wasn’t a tie. Did the right song win? What were your favorites, besides the top two?

    Liked by 1 person

    • The top two was exactly how I would have wanted it. Beyond that, I enjoyed the songs from Belgium (I featured it in one of these round-ups months ago!), Australia and Austria most.

      Liked by 3 people

    • Full transparency: I have been lying in wait to see someone bring up Eurovision just so I have an excuse to talk about Käärijä, whose music has dominated my playlist since the final.

      Not just Cha Cha Cha (which has held up surprisingly well for me), but his other songs too – it’s a particular kind of genre that I wasn’t familiar with before but I really like it. Some of my current favourites are Mic Mac, Viulinkieli and Auto jää.

      The thing about his type of music is that, to have any staying power, it needs to be performed by someone with a strong personality and voice – and Käärijä is that someone. He posesses that rare combo of not taking himself seriously while taking his music and performance very seriously. I’ve seen fragments of his interviews and he seems to understand the core of his appeal very well. He’s also (apparently?) said that he will continue making songs in Finnish, not English – which to me shows good sense and authenticity.

      For the record this is not me taking a side – Loreen’s Tattoo is also a good song and she’s a great singer.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Kylie’s DISCO was great but I’m glad to see her dive back into heavy electropop.

    Now that Jessie Ware’s latest album is out, did you have any highlights from it? The one-two punch of Beautiful People and Freak Me Now has been on repeat for me for the last few weeks.


  3. Lots of house-y sounds on the list! I really like that PNAU song though.

    I’m very disconnected from the trends to be honest. I’ve mostly been listening to Eurovision songs – I’ve already spilled my thoughts in a reply somewhere up there so I ‘ll spare everyone my Käärijä rant here. I could probably write a paper on the way he conquered half the world by infusing a (relatively) simple song with his powerful personality and smart branding, but I’ll leave it at ‘I like his music’ for now.


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