“Break the Rules” the song and the outfit/dance moves with it seem like something conceived by someone who’s operating with an encyclopedia definition of “rock” and has maybe heard a couple rock songs and saw a couple rock videos.
Charli XCX featuring baby Haim!
warning! pop cynic opinion –
She seems to be very popular (on stereogum as well), but this was not a great performance, right?
Also, “i don’t wanna go to school, i just wanna break the rules”? I dunno, i just don’t get it. that’s just my old man opinion i guess (i’m 27)
Venus in Furs
say what you will about FIOE, but this song is top five strokes for me
coincidentally, the artist emulated here, james brown also had a history of assaulting women with one rape accusation that never made it to court.
a huge James Brown copy…but is that really ever a bad thing?
strip away the glitter and googly eyes, and you have pretty much a standard, underwhelming cover with a slightly horrendous bridge. I’ve never been huge into flaming lips, kinda have always felt like i should dig them but i was definitely expecting more for this. The flaming lips (mainly Wayne, i guess) have always been praised for their big imagination on stage and in the studio, but i see none of that here. I would’ve been more pleased if they completely destroyed the song and turned it inside out, but this was pretty tame and by-the-numbers. A lot of frosting with no cake.
I get that people like her because she’s a talented, pretty, young songwriter whose had enormous amount of success. And there’s nothing wrong with that. I get the whole appreciating the “craft” thing with her manufactured pop sound. But there’s something missing here, a real reason to write anything about it.
I like to read articles on Stereogum that are interesting viewpoints about interesting people and intriguing music, but i really don’t see any of that with Swift. 1989 might have have competent pop songs, but it’s also produced/co-written by the same people that have given us all the other pop “craft” over the years. So is there really anything to write about here if her music is crafted by the same people who churned out Backstreet Boys and Britney Spears hits? She has more corporate endorsements than she has albums at this point. It just seems similar to a food blog writing about the merits of Coca-Cola. Yeah sure it’s a quality beverage, but it’s a brand that has a more recognizable logo than flavor. What is there really left to say about it? She isn’t a soulless pop machine like others, but I don’t think there’s much left to say at this point other than “Taylor Swift is still very much popular and profitable.”
In order for something to become this popular in music, it can’t afford a ton of depth without alienating her target market, which is everyone (like Coca-Cola). This is why this narrative seems so pompous and tiring to me, because it simply doesn’t exist. Meanwhile, the constant barrage is forcing smaller artists off the front page and into the back reaches of the news log. Plus I already have ads everywhere in every other site forcing her image into my life. Stereogum is following; not leading.
hmm….well alright then
I went into this wanting to hate it, as Pet Sounds is very near and dear to me. But I actually kinda liked it, beautiful visuals and some good performances. Sure I don’t like some of the singers in it (i just don’t like Lorde’s delivery at all, too slinky/sultry),but i think it kinda worked. I also watched the ‘making of’ video and although it was commissioned by a huge media conglomerate, it seemed like a pretty sincere endeavour (produced by Ethan Johns no doubt!).