Some of that monster Manhattan post-punk chic that made The Strokes bloghouse names still exists in neon fashion, Nick Valensi near Daft Punk glam in his staccato leads. They’ve all had their separate solo crusades over the years, but this is the Casablancas forlorn hope show when they do it right, and damn does that crooning disillusion shine universal still without busting out the $1000 words.
Tobaxxo is up to his greasy tricks again — instruments disappear temporarily into distortion, the vocoder’ed lyrics are just barely peeking out from the swamp, and the bluesy synth basslines propel the lurch forward. Like most lead singles of his in recent memory, it’ll “make you slow down” to nod your head with the sludge; [LISTEN].
On the surface it sounds like a sweet song for the girls to sing while they’re thinking about prince charming; filled with weepy violins and finger snaps and gooey, aw-shucks melodies. But in truth it’s oddly submissive, and a little bit creepy too. Whoever she’s singing to sounds like a predator and the last thing you want to see is anyone singing alongside these bizarre lyrics.
The pseudo-house beat is enough to make even the most sympathetic music fan scoff in disbelief. It’s a basic rhythm that would clear a dance floor in a heartbeat. Lyrically it’s just as atrocious, the audible equivalent to pleather; cheapness personified. She wants to let you know that everything is going to be fine so long as you have the ability to shut off that little thing called common sense.
The choppy guitar lick is the green light for her to transform into a sex kitten. It’s a stripper song, which is a massive disappointment for anyone who thought a dangerous woman is someone who doesn’t have to objectify themselves for attention. She’s opening herself up to the world, and making sure everyone knows she’s liberated. But in truth it sounds like the jangling chains of status quo.
If you were to take Forever 21 and run it through a music making machine this is what it would sound like; cheap, gaudy and without style, a repugnant song that says nothing. Of course it’s one of her biggest hits and it’s about what you’d expect from an artist who will blindly follow whatever the execs tell her to. Yet another visionless song with no substance.
The reggae element in the beat sounds like it were inspired by a stay at a lame beach resort, the same feeling you get when you see some idiot wearing that dumb hat with the fake dreads. She’s once again pursuing some plastic relationship and is willing to do whatever it takes to get her way. Nicki Minaj joins the fray and convinces her to do something she’ll surely regret.
From Nicki Minaj to Lil Wayne, the predictable Top 50 cameos keep rolling in. She’s doing her best impression of Beyonce with the breathy vocals, and failing miserably because nothing she’s saying holds water. The emotions are stale and lack punch. She broke up with her ex and is (surprise) finding comfort in the arms of another man. As weak as it gets both creatively and spiritually.
Macy Gray is a desperate attempt to infuse soul into this lifeless album. But this song was dead on arrival, and no one short of James Brown can save it. The beat is dramatic and overdone, and it does nothing to enhance the lyrics. Her voice can barely stand up to the overall sound and she’s left begging and pleading for something that wasn’t hers in the first place.
An embarrassing attempt at funk, a travesty that should be placed in an incinerator immediately. The pop elements are as cliche as it gets, ripped straight out of the book to be exact. The predictability extends to the lyrics as well, as she’s making a plea for the shallow love this type of music encourages. She’s greedy for love and it’s making her bloated and unintelligible.
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