**1/2 (out of four)
Obvi, 2013 was supposed to be the year for Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber. Nay, it was supposed to be *their* year, when they would rent out not just the Staples Center but the entire globe, traversing it at their whimsy. Their reign would be one of a well-moisturized fist, converting everyone into a Belieber with adorable @-replies and great hair tips.
Alas, the Biebs himself ruined this tweenage dream.
Selena will have you know as much (if rumors are to be Beliebed) on her new song, "Rule the World." Since Disney took down the YouTube cut, we can assume this was a leak and not a single, but it still retains all the wrath of a T-Swift breakup hit.
Gomez's verses are a soft caress—she coos, Gwen-Stefani-like, as synths swirl around a single plodding note and pining for an unrequited romance. She actually sounds much older than her baby face looks, and that reserve gives way to a surprise four-on-the-floor dance chorus where Gomez belts, "Our love was made to rule the world/You came and broke the perfect girl." Quoth Selena Gomez, The Perfect Girl.
A completely raucous stadium-synth dance break follows the chorus, guaranteed to have those middle-schoolers illegally grinding away as parent chaperones attempt to pry them apart. Those kids should listen. They should heed the words of Selena echoing in their punch-fueled brains: Even love of great ambition can be foiled, whether by your annoying parents or annoying super-models.
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