Pop! Justice: 100% Solid Pop Music

Various artists (Polydor; U.K.)

Time Out Ratings :

<strong>Rating: </strong>0/5

In compiling Pop! Justice: 100% Solid Pop Music, the folks behind the U.K.-based website Popjustice intended to make “not only an album which pop fans will really like, but also one which will make pop haters realise that there is more to pop music than X Factor.” And indeed, if this CD can’t convince our country’s stick-in-the-mud listeners that American Idol—the closest thing the U.S. has to X Factor—isn’t representative of the modern pop world, then nothing can. A collection of 23 tracks from some of today’s hottest acts on both sides of the Atlantic, this mix is a testament to the website’s belief that, contrary to the thinking of many bloggers and critics, pop shouldn’t be treated as a novelty or guilty pleasure.

And why should anyone be ashamed of loving, say, Nelly Furtado’s minor dance-pop miracle, “Maneater”? Furtado is one of a handful of names here that U.S. listeners will recognize—others include the Scissor Sisters, the Killers and Idol alum Kelly Clarkson, all of whom appear in superb remixes. But it’s the not-so-familiar British acts who truly make Pop! Justice such a treat. Among the highlights are deliriously infectious selections by Rachel Stevens, Alesha Dixon, Sophie-Ellis Bextor and Girls Aloud. Best of all is the Sugababes’ cover of Arctic Monkeys’ “I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor,” which transforms the punky rave-up into a disco stomper that, like much of the CD, could make even the staunchest pop-hater get up and dance. — Jimmy Draper