"The ballads seem to be a lot more present than they have been in many years," says the mash-up maestro.
DJ Earworm has been mashing up the top 25 biggest songs of each calendar year since 2007, when dance hits like Rihanna's "Umbrella," Gwen Stefani's "The Sweet Escape" and Timbaland's "The Way I Are" were still dominating pop radio. Earworm's 2013 edition of "United State of Pop," dubbed "Living The Fantasy," takes a respite from the series' usual breakneck speed, as the California DJ acknowledges that contemporary smashes like Lorde's "Royals," Avicii's "Wake Me Up!" and Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" represent a slight changing of the guard at Top 40.
"It's a little darker-themed, I think," Earworm (real name: Jordan Roseman) tells Billboard about his latest mash-up masterwork, which was released on Tuesday (Dec. 3). The DJ, whose all-encompassing mash-ups have each earned tens of millions of YouTube views, says he even considered making this year's "United State of Pop" a no-frills ballad, but ended up relying on the instrumental from Swedish House Mafia's "Don't You Worry Child" to give the mash-up its fair share of uptempo movements.