Turning a pop corner on another brilliant year
2012 was a year of comebacks, re-issues, stars working it on the social networks – and lots of crazy love, writes AILBHE MALONE
FITTINGLY for a year that ends with the same digit as it begins, 2012’s been a year of comebacks and re-issues. The number one album at the end of January 2012 was exactly the same as the year before it – Adele’s omnipresent 21. Lana del Rey waited less than a year to re-issue her debut album, albeit in an extended edition, and Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream promo continued with the release of the Complete Confection.
Madonna became MDNA. No Doubt re-banded, as did Girls Aloud and Sugababes 1.0. EDM was the buzzword, and the Guettification of the charts continued – sadfacers at the back, forget ye not that Dave the Rave also gave us Falling to Pieces with Sia. A dubstep interlude became as ubiquitous as a key change in the middle eight: what Britney had lead us into with Hold It Against Me in 2011 was cemented by Taylor Swift’s performance of I Knew You Were Trouble at the American Music Awards.
2012 was a year when stars put the “work” into social networking. Gaga released no new music (although she did chuck out a perfume, an album title, a remix and a custom-made social network), but through her Twitter presence announced various short films, and her new album title, Artpop. Rihanna did her work for her, releasing her seventh consecutive album in as many years, and became the First Lady of Instagram. Madonna dipped an ill-advised toe into Twitter – an online QA around her new album revealed that her favourite European city was Gdansk, apparently. Meanwhile, Beyoncé killed it on Tumblr, flawlessly posting pictures of her glamorous life. Sample photo: Jay-Z pushing a glowing B on a swing. Shakira’s Tumblr was less ritzy, but equally sweet, showing Shaki’s growing baby bump.
In affairs of the heart, Katy Perry opened the year with a divorce, and relived the break up all summer through the big screen- in 3D. Luckily, her fans helped her through the pain. She tweeted: “I am so grateful for all the love and support I’ve had from people around the world. You guys have made my heart happy again.”
Justin Bieber turned 18, but his grand romance with Selena Gomez took a turn for the worse after an alleged indiscretion with a Victoria’s Secret model, and the pair are seeing out the year single. Taylor Swift’s love-life was a manuscript more illuminated than the Book of Kells. A summer romance with a Kennedy turned to naught, although Swift is now rumoured to be dating One Direction hair-flicker Harry Styles.