First Hit #1: December 1, 2012
It’s becoming a rather predictable – when December rolls around, we will see Rihanna ascend to the top of the chart. Unexpectedly, it’s a rare example of a 2011 song that’s actually somewhat positive about relationships – which is a departure for Rihanna in general, but also for the charts in 2012 in general. Still, it’s got the big chorus, though it’s not quite the inspirational tale of inherent awesomeness that the chorus implies – it’s really focused on one relationship through the entire thing, it’s just a healthy one. Rihanna’s delivery of “shine bright like a diamond” is unexpected from her, and honestly she’s developed a lot as a performer from her earlier career when she used autotune as a crutch. Diamonds is built around empty platitudes, and isn’t doing much new, but it’s a decent song.