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Play It Again
Turn Down For What
DJ Snake & Lil Jon
MAURA JOHNSTON: Luke Bryan used the jittery, endlessly building "Turn Down For What” to psych up the crowd right before he appeared onstage to dole out party anthems and hidden-in-the-stage brews to a sold-out Gillette Stadium, which is as good a white flag as any. My Vote: "Turn Down For What"
WILLIAM GRUGER: The official music video for “Play It Again” attempts to uphold the music industry’s most tired image of the status quo: tour trucks roll up to a stadium, a montage of stage crews set up an arena spectacular, and dozens of old white guys stand on stage thrusting with phallic guitars, parroting rock music’s oldest trope. In the official music video for “Turn Down For What,” a dude is so turnt up that he literally twerks his way through an entire house, from top to bottom. 2014 really needed its own version of Diplo’s “Express Yourself,” so this matchup really isn’t even a contest. My Vote: "Turn Down For What"
DENISE WARNER: "Turn Down For What” is fun and infectious — with just the right amount of ridiculousness to boot. When the chorus hits, it’s basically impossible for you to not turn down for what — whatever that means. My Vote: "Turn Down For What"
JOE LYNCH: It's safe to say that future generations will not understand why "Turn Down For What" was such a cultural touchstone in 2014, but its improbable Internet ubiquity was one of the unexpected delights of this year. Sorry, Luke, but a cultural juggernaut beats a good song. My Vote: "Turn Down For What"
ALEX GALE: These songs are polar opposites. Bryan is heart-warming country bro-stalgia, but “Turn Down for What” is a juggernaut, and arguably the most 2014 song of 2014, with indulgent drop after drop, rib-rattling 808s and 12 perfectly post-millennial words about never stopping, no matter what, courtesy of Lil Jon at peak crunk. Does this bracket have the mercy rule? My Vote: "Turn Down For What"OVERALL WINNER: "Turn Down For What"