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92. Anticipating (2001)

(Spears, Schwartz, Kierulf)

Album: Anticipating – Single / Britney

It’s almost like Spears knew disco would be back with a vengeance later in the new millennium. The sixth track from Britney (and a France-exclusive single release), this bright and bubbly dance track (with Nile Rogers on guitar!) was tailor-made for the roller rink. Another Spears cowriting credit, “Anticipating” is an ode to a going out and having a fun, innocent time. A bit of a milestone for Britney, this is her first writing credit to get the single treatment (excluding holiday tracks), even if in a select market. While Spears’s vocals shine here, this is one of the cutesier cuts from Britney and feels a bit out of place. Perhaps with a slightly different production (I’m thinking a boosted bass and less bells) this could have been more of a standout. As it stands, it offers a moment of sweet escapism and toe-tapping delight. It’s also hard to forget Spears’s over-the-top colorful ensemble and crayon-inspired stage set during her performance of this number during the Dream Within a Dream tour. It was like something out of a PBS kids’ program. Which made it all the more jarring when she unbuttoned her shirt, stepped out of her skirt, and segued right into a much vampier performance of “I’m a Slave 4 U.” It was a very confusing and exciting time for young Britney fans.

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