“Stupid Love” is more than just another hit for Gaga: it represents a revival of the sound that made her a star.
Seven years is a long time to wait to put your paws up, but for Little Monsters, the drought has finally ended.
On this week’s Billboard Hot 100 chart, “Stupid Love,” Lady Gaga’s kinetic new single, blasts in with a No. 5 debut, marking her first top 10 bow on the chart since “Applause” started at No. 6 in 2013. That’s also how long it’s been since Gaga — who shot out of a cannon as an electro-pop provocateur in the late 2000s — has had a danceable single in the top 10. “Stupid Love” is a return to form for Mother Monster, but also a reminder of how long it’s been since she has triumphed in the sound that made her famous.
And with good reason: seven Marches ago, Gaga was at a very different, much more precarious phase of her career. After becoming the most bankable mainstream artist of the early 2010s with a boundary-pushing fusion of art, fashion, performance and uptempo pop craft, Gaga had suffered from diminishing returns, unable to conjure another “Just Dance” or “Bad Romance.” The hair-metal iconography of 2011’s Born This Way gave way to 2013’s Artpop, a grab bag of bold ideas that nudged at the contours of Gaga’s classic sound but became her first project to spawn zero chart-topping hits.