BSBB Round 2: Florida Georgia Line feat. Luke Bryan, "This Is How We Roll" vs. Ariana Grande feat. Iggy Azalea, "Problem"
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Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules

This Is How We Roll

Florida Georgia Line feat. Luke Bryan

Problem

Ariana Grande feat. Iggy Azalea



JAMIESON COX: I live and work in a university town, and if “number of times heard while walking by a raging kegger” was an important metric in this competition, “This Is How We Roll” would win, hands down. But it’s not, and “Problem” is near-perfect pop music even though Ariana’s never met a hard consonant she couldn’t mash into a formless mouth sound.
My Vote: “Problem”

ERIKA RAMIREZ: Big voices are my weakness: Sam Smith, Jazmine Sullivan, etc. Ariana Grande possesses vocal prowess and the potential of a superstar.
My Vote: “Problem”

NICK WILLIAMS: “Problem” was such a game-changer in Ariana’s career, and also simultaneously made Iggy a household name with the one-two punch of this and “Fancy”. The sax-driven, horn-heavy sound from Max Martin was so insanely infectious, you really couldn't escape it while it was dominating radio. Big Sean’s slurring of the chorus line, too, was a risk that paid off massively, and even made reference to the Ying Yang Twins’ “Wait (The Whisper Song)," which is always a brilliant move.
My Vote: "Problem"

JEM ASWAD: Ariana Grande is a stellar singer but why they keep putting her songs in the Key of Nails-On-A-Blackboard is a disservice to her considerable talents — honestly, here she sounds like that annoying girl at the back of your social studies class who won’t shut up, although judging by the charts I’m alone in this assessment. Florida Georgia Line’s bro-down country-rock leaves me cold at the best of times, although I certainly get it — who knew Kid Rock would be such a visionary genre-bender?
My Vote: “Problem”

ERNEST BAKER: I'm impressed by the extent to which Florida Georgia Line has bro-ified country music. They shout out Drake on "This Is How We Roll" and they're basically rapping the verses. I'd rather listen to Tyler and Brian rap than contemporary saxobeat.
My Vote: “This Is How We Roll”

KRISTEN YOONSOO KIM: I was really hoping that this “Problem” song would be better, considering both Ariana and Iggy are having their moment right now, but that weird whispered part and brass section are seriously bringing them down. It’s still better than “This Is How We Roll,” which starts off with a cheesy riff and then gets truly unlistenable when it dumps nasal-y vocals on top of it.
My Vote: “Problem”

JASON LIPSHUTZ: “Problem,” now Ariana Grande’s biggest hit, is not as cohesive as “The Way” or as jubilant as “Break Free,” but served its purpose in showcasing her stunning voice and relegating Big Sean to a whisper. “This Is How We Roll” is a fine entry in Florida Georgia Line’s never-ending quest for the perfect bro-down, but “Problem” was star-making in a way that FGL’s “Cruise” was last year. When I think of 2014, I’ll think of songs like “Problem.”
My Vote: “Problem”


OVERALL WINNER: “Problem”

Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules