Tuesday, December 06, 2005

as in, "everybody's a"

blah blah blah

So I've gotten myself into the position of writing for free for Stylus which is mostly an excuse to try and get my writing a bit sharper, produce yet more blurbable work that can be introduced as evidence to get freelance work (Available! Call Now!) and keep me plugged into what's on the daily U.S. pop airwaves. I'll be posting my weekly snarkiness here on days when I don't have a longer article together, along with corporate sponsored links where you can either hear the music or see the video and make up your own mind. This week's batch is pretty sad, but why should I have to suffer alone, eh?

Coldplay - "Talk"
It takes work to out nullify U2, but I'm of the opinion that Coldplay is now officially the most boring band on the airwaves. This is less a single and more wallpaper; after a half dozen listens, I'm still not sure if I've heard it yet. Singularly unremarkable and utterly bland, it's hard to find much of anything to dislike about "Talk", except that in a world as full of bright and wonderful music as this one, I can't imagine why you'd want to waste your time on this blank slate.

Jamie Foxx f/ Ludacris - "Unpredictable"
Foxx's self produced first single smacks of Kanye West's influence in every way but the most important: it's not especially good. Solidly middle-of-the-road rnb only barely fit to make out or dance to, 'Unpredictable' takes no chances, carefully positioning itself in the most innocuous and radio friendly manner so as not to embarrass its crossover star with a The Return of Bruno style debacle. It's a success on that count; Foxx does faux-R. Kelly as well as he apes Ray Charles, but from the lame spoken word opening to the too-short and untypically pedestrian Ludacris guest verses to the song-ending falsetto chorus redux, 'Unpredictable' is anything but.

Natasha Bedingfield - "Unwritten"
Oh, Britain. With Rachel Stevens and Girls Aloud to choose from, you export us THIS pap? Bedingfield's first single was a mystery-to-me international hit but as little as "These Words" grabbed me, this is MUCH worse. Paint-by-numbers pop should have at least a single standout moment; this tries to coast by on a 'Tuesdays with Morrie' feel good vibe that manages to be both cloying and stultifying without breaking a sweat. "I break tradition / sometimes my tries are outside the lines We've been conditioned to not make mistakes / but I can't live that way"? Oprah and cancer patients don't need this much glossy self-affirmation. "Feel the rain on your skin / No one else can feel it for you"? Somebody get that copy of SARK's collected works away from Jean Teasdale and get her a shot of tequila STAT. Worth avoiding.

Daddy Yankee - "Rompe"
Giving "Rompe" a numerical review is missing the point; this isn't music to listen to so much as it is background wash, a soundtrack to roll up in, order a drink to or shake ass over. A relentless, critic-proof knuckleheaded bounce that bears a stronger resemblance to a ytmnd loop than a complete song, the undoubtedly soon-to-be-inescapable beat sounds like it'll be better by the fourth remix. Now, it's just eating straight cookie dough and just as likely to make you sick if you overdo it.

KoRn - "Twisted Transistor"
Okay, forget the song. Let's talk about the video.
In the video, the players in Korn are replaced with Lil' Jon, David Banner, XZibit and Snoop. The Korn dopplegangers are playing a benefit for a CBGB's clone. XZibit keeps puking everywhere. David Banner almost has his eye put out by something shooting out of a smoke machine. Snoop gets snarly and diva-ish and slaps their intern around. LIL JON TAKES OFF HIS GLASSES. Clearly, this is an important turning point in the evolution of the American music video.
Whazzat? How's the song? Forget the song.

Don't believe me OR your own ears?
Get a second opinion.


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