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Um, there’s a new movie out called “Dear White People” that is exactly what you’re talking about for blackness (black people exploring/criticizing the whole ‘what does being black even meeeean?’ thing and trying to define themselves while trying to not fit into a stereotype). In fact, I’d argue that most groups do this in regular and pretty obvious ways. So, no, I don’t think it’s “a white people thing.”
When I heard “Top of the morning, my fist to your face is fucking Folgers” I definitely cackled.
I like when debates end in reasonable appreciation of differences without vitriol. Good day to you.
You’re telling me you thought “Red” was a country album? She started as country-pop, with an emphasis on “pop,” and has been moving further away from country with every release. Since her fans have already shown that they’ll follow her to more pop-rock horizons, there was always only a very slim chance of alienating enough people to make any sort of financial impact, and that was only if she went really out there with it. This album is not a “totally different kind of music.” You’re saying this like “1989″ is some sort of adventurous foray into the avant-garde.
Steven Hyden (great writer) made a similar point about this in his most recent Grantland article that speaks to what I’m talking about probably better than I do: http://grantland.com/hollywood-prospectus/taylor-swift-1989-review-pop-music/
I don’t think it’s a “risk” to make a pop-album. That’s a weird assertion to make. I also don’t see her perspective as strong and honest – at least any more so than I would an educated upper-middle class teenager’s diary. What you call a “consistent narrative” I call emotional stagnation and thematic repetition. I’ve been reading SG for years, and things like the KFed updates were generally toungue-in-cheek; now we’re being asked to take it all seriously and are generally looked down upon if we dissent. Did I miss anything? Oh yeah, individual writing credits. Again, I’m disagreeing with you on the opinion that her writing should even be considered the work of an individual more talented then a million other teens with an above-average ability to string sentences together. Is she a talented person? Definitely, otherwise she wouldn’t be a successful musician with legions of fans. Does she deserve the praise that is lavished on all of her albums as if they’re bringing mainstream music to a deeper, more substantial level? I don’t think so.
Totally agreed, though I feel like we’re in the minority here. I can’t listen to “Love Again,” it makes me feel uncomfortable, especially right before a song like “Crown.”
With that said, the more I’ve listened to it, the more it’s catching up to RTJ1. The album has some tricks that are really growing on me.
That’s a pompous point of view. You’re pretty much saying “if you don’t like this, you’re wrong and close-minded” instead of recognizing that some people have different tastes in music then you. The sentence “Taylor Swift is an extraordinary force of modern pop who just dropped a fifth straight album of A+ songs” is totally subjective, yet you say it like it’s a capital ‘F’ Fact.
I happen to agree with the folks on here who think it’s lame to have a huge write-up on this album featured on what used to be the best alternative music website around – especially when it tells us that we have to “respect the motherfucking craft” and uses words like “subterfuge” and “concept album” to describe what is essentially well-manufactured junk food for your ears. I’ve decried the poptimism thing around here before and I still think it’s ridiculous to expect everyone to respect craft and the ability to appeal to the largest demographic possible with danceable tunes written by a team of producers over artistic integrity, individual talent and the desire to make something meaningful and challenging.
I kinda feel sorry for whoever who doesn’t expect to be challenged by the art they consime, even arbitrarily, but it’s not going to stop me.
On first listen, I kind-of feel like I liked the leaner production on RTJ1 a bit more. If the first album was a tightly controlled, quick-fisted fighter, this one is a behemoth – big, powerful, bold, but also a bit more sluggish. It still bangs for sure, and I’ll still blast it out of my car for months. At this point I’m just splitting hairs I guess.
Songs about New York I love you, but you’re bringing me down.
Wow, beautiful song.
On a rambly note, I’m so glad they don’t seem to be changing their sound. It really annoys me when the blogosphere (whatever) starts to demand that a band makes some drastic changes for changes’ sake. If ever there was a band that should stay the course, it’s Beach House (if ever there was another one, it was The Strokes, but we know how that turned out). If you have a great, unique sound and make great music with it, then by all means do that. Just keep churning out sweet, sweet melodies, Beach House.