From now until something displaces last year's "Umbrella" from the top of our iTunes most-played list, Vulture will be judging the contenders for this year's Song of the Summer.
Leona Lewis, "Bleeding Love"
Any reasonable, objective evaluation of this year's hopefuls would have to find Lewis's "Bleeding Love" among the front-runners: It's simple, immediately catchy, and already a radio hit despite the fact that its hook uses knife violence and life-ending blood loss as a metaphor for falling in love. Lewis is a former winner of Simon Cowell's British show The X Factor and, as such, has the combined weight of her record label, Sony BMG, and the American Idol machine behind her. It's a top-ten hit in pretty much all civilized countries and already spawned a number of ironic indie-rock cover versions. Unless somebody writes an even catchier track about being ax-murdered, our money's on Lewis this summer.