Monthly Archives: January 2011

Wait, “Orient”?

Does Lady Gaga seriously call Asian people “Orientals” in the “Born This Way” lyrics?

NO MATTER BLACK, WHITE OR BEIGE
CHOLA OR ORIENT MADE
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN TO BE BRAVE

Is someone going to tell her that this is like referring to a black person as a “negro”?

The Stupdity of Comparing Britney and Gaga’s Lyrics

Little Monsters have offered up their new defense: “So you’re gonna tell the lyrics to Hold It Against Me are so great?”

Of course they’re not. But then, Britney isn’t the one heralding her music as anything other than fun dance-pop music, is she? If Britney were bragging to reporters that she had crafted the “anthem for our generation” and then released something like “Hold It Against Me,” then we might begin to legitimately ask such questions. But Britney — like another artist I quite like, Ke$ha — has never sold her music as anything other than what it is.

This brings us back to a point I make in my original essay about Lady Gaga: the heart of problem here is the disconnect between perception and reality. Gaga is selling her music as anthemic, generation-defining music. It is actually nothing of the sort. The lyrics to “Born This Way” are absolutely embarrassing. If you’re going to tell me that your lyrics define our generation and they end up being nothing but a giant pile of shit, then I’m going to have a problem. If you tell me that your song is “meaningful,” then I’m going to take a close look at the lyrics and judge them accordingly. Britney has never claimed that “Hold It Against Me” is a deep, inspirational anthem: just an awesome club track. Hence, there can be no comparison.

Actually, Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” Is Anti-Gay

The lyrics to Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” are alternately condescending, patronizing, melodramatic, cliched, obnoxious, and grating. Delivered with all of the subtlety of a sledgehammer, they represent all of the constricting, insulting stereotypes that normal gay people have fought for three decades. I thought we’d done a good job of burying this crap. Now, with Lady Gaga as the media’s appointed spokeswoman for gay people, we’ll have to deal with this bullshit once again — for months, at least.

The lyrics are worse than I imagined they’d be, and every reader of this site knows that my expectations were rock-bottom to begin with. But Gaga’s stans have already come up with their go-to defense of these insulting lyrics: If you don’t like them, you’re clearly homophobic. Gaga Daily is all abuzz with that meme. “The gays” need songs like this, we’re told; ‘Mother Monster’ unites us all in her unbounded love.

Ah, yes: “the gays.” Her old standby. Lady Gaga dedicates awards to “the gays.” She asks at her shows where “the gays” are, and dedicates songs to “the gays out there.” And this song, too, will be for “the gays.” But in fact, “Born This Way” is, at its heart, an anti-gay song. It is restricting and narrow; it looks at gay people and sees nothing but their sexuality. The truth about homosexuality is that it’s really not that big of a deal: it’s not a lifestyle and it’s not an ideology. Speaking as someone gay, I want people to look at me and see not homosexuality — but my values, ideas, and aspirations. My sexuality is an incidental part of my life. But people like Lady Gaga look at me and sees nothing but gay, gay, gay.

The lyrics are certainly horrific for their lack of poetry, but they are even more horrific because they reinforce every stereotype of gays of identity-obsessed fashionista queens. There is nothing tongue-in-cheek about the song.

In the final analysis, Lady Gaga is nothing but the other side of the same coin that the Religious Right occupies. Pat Robertson sees gays as a flaming bunch of queens who are completely obsessed with their sexuality. Lady Gaga sees us in the same way. She should not be excused, let alone glorified, for this insulting attitude, merely because she likes the stereotype. Fag-haggery is not pro-gay. It is demeaning, condescending, and constricting. Every gay person with any respect for himself should boycott this song and this album. And I am supremely confident that this song will produce the much-needed backlash against this delusional woman.

Born This Way Lyrics Released In Full

Came across these:

BORN THIS WAY
WRITTEN BY: LADY GAGA
PRODUCED BY: LADY GAGA, FERNANDO GARIBAY, DJ WHITE SHADOW
MIXED AND ENGINEERED BY: DAVID RUSSEL
INTRO:
It doesn’t matter if you love him, or capital H-I-M
Just put your paws up
’cause you were Born This Way, Baby
VERSE:
MY MAMA TOLD ME WHEN I WAS YOUNG
WE ARE ALL BORN SUPERSTARS
SHE ROLLED MY HAIR AND PUT MY LIPSTICK ON
IN THE GLASS OF HER BOUDOIR
“THERE’S NOTHIN WRONG WITH LOVIN WHO YOU ARE”
SHE SAID, “‘CAUSE HE MADE YOU PERFECT, BABE”
“SO HOLD YOUR HEAD UP GIRL AND YOU’LL GO FAR,
LISTEN TO ME WHEN I SAY”
CHORUS:
I’M BEAUTIFUL IN MY WAY
‘CAUSE GOD MAKES NO MISTAKES
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN THIS WAY
DON’T HIDE YOURSELF IN REGRET
JUST LOVE YOURSELF AND YOU’RE SET
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN THIS WAY
POST-CHORUS:
OOO THERE AIN’T NO OTHER WAY
BABY I WAS BORN THIS WAY
BABY I WAS BORN THIS WAY
OOO THERE AIN’T NO OTHER WAY
BABY I WAS BORN-
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN THIS WAY
DON’T BE A DRAG -JUST BE A QUEEN
DON’T BE A DRAG -JUST BE A QUEEN
DON’T BE A DRAG -JUST BE A QUEEN
DON’T BE!
VERSE:
GIVE YOURSELF PRUDENCE
AND LOVE YOUR FRIENDS
SUBWAY KID, REJOICE YOUR TRUTH
IN THE RELIGION OF THE INSECURE
I MUST BE MYSELF, RESPECT MY YOUTH
A DIFFERENT LOVER IS NOT A SIN
BELIEVE CAPITAL H-I-M (HEY HEY HEY)
I LOVE MY LIFE I LOVE THIS RECORD AND
MI AMORE VOLE FE YAH (LOVE NEEDS FAITH)
REPEAT CHORUS + POST-CHORUS
BRIDGE:
DON’T BE A DRAG, JUST BE A QUEEN
WHETHER YOU’RE BROKE OR EVERGREEN
YOU’RE BLACK, WHITE, BEIGE, CHOLA DESCENT
YOU’RE LEBANESE, YOU’RE ORIENT
WHETHER LIFE’S DISABILITIES
LEFT YOU OUTCAST, BULLIED, OR TEASED
REJOICE AND LOVE YOURSELF TODAY
‘CAUSE BABY YOU WERE BORN THIS WAY
NO MATTER GAY, STRAIGHT, OR BI,
LESBIAN, TRANSGENDERED LIFE
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN TO SURVIVE
NO MATTER BLACK, WHITE OR BEIGE
CHOLA OR ORIENT MADE
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN TO BE BRAVE
REPEAT CHORUS
OUTRO/REFRAIN:
I WAS BORN THIS WAY HEY!
I WAS BORN THIS WAY HEY!
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN THIS WAY HEY!
I WAS BORN THIS WAY HEY!
I WAS BORN THIS WAY HEY!
I’M ON THE RIGHT TRACK BABY
I WAS BORN THIS WAY HEY!

You have got to be kidding me!

Inside the Gaga Cult

Comments from GagaDaily about “Born This Way”:

“Thats not a good thing to say. Momma Monster loves ALL of her Little Monsters.” – Little Monster

“hey love is endless and it can come form all things she love her fans more then anything” – Peter

“Why is there such fighting within the monster family? Isn’t the point that we are connected because of our humanity and the freedom we’ve found in Gaga?” – Jon Hetherington

“I LOVE the opening lyrics.. Don’t Be A Drag, Just Be A Queen! GaGa keeps giving us little monster presents and I love it! She knows how to please her fans and keep them on the Edge Of Glory 😉 Love you MM and I pray everyday that I get to meet you someday.. maybe sit down and have some wine and cupcakes =) ” – Mr Cupcake

“I’m crying right now. Lady Gaga is such an inspiration to people. Everyone shall be equal and I feel it in the lyrics.” – Lucy438

“OMG! It is going to be a most epic album, isn’t it, mama? I am so excited! I can’t wait to hear it! You are teasing us so much with this! lol Thank you for your wonderful music, style, mind, and acceptance. You remind me that it is okay to be a little odd. There is nothing wrong with me being different. You are an angel, mama. I cannot wait for this album; it will be the best ever! xx Also, super excited for shiny new videos and new hairstyles! Go, mama! Have your EPIC year!

Love,
Leslie Monster” – Leslie Dawn Brewer

What. The. Fuck.

And when Disquezmez said that she was a Poker-Face era Gaga fan and that she misses that era, windrider2, who is definitely familiar with this site, said:

That’s a lot like all the right wing politicos in America who believe only in the good old days of the fifties.

What. The. Fuck.

Is Lady Gaga Trying to Self-Destruct?

More lyrics, straight from the woman herself, to GagaDaily:

“No matter gay, straight or bi, lesbian, transgendered life
I’m on the right track baby, I was born to survive.”

“Give yourself prudence, and love your friends, subway kid rejoice your truth. In the religion of the insecure I must: be myself, respect my youth”

“A different lover is not a sin, believe capital H-I-M”

“My mama told me when I was young, We are all born superstars. She rolled my hair and put my lipstick on, in the glass of her boudoir”

I have no words. What could I possibly say that would do justice to how patronizing, condescending, and uninspiring these subtle-as-a-sledgehammer lyrics are? I mean…what the fuck is she thinking?

“Born This Way” So Far: 2011’s Biggest Disaster-In-the-Making

Pigrez Hilton has revealed two more lines of Lady Gaga’s new song “Born This Way”: “Don’t be a drag/Just be a queen.”

If you find this empowering, go drown yourself by sticking your face in a dirty toilet bowl.

Here are the lyrics to the song, so far:

Don’t be a drag
Just be a queen

I’m beautiful in my way
‘Cause God makes no mistakes
I’m on the right track
Baby I was born this way

Don’t hide yourself in regret
Just love yourself and you’re set
I’m on the right track
Baby I was born this way

Unbelievable. To quote Lil’ Kim: “Better slow down, dummy/you ’bout to crash.” I couldn’t have dreamed of more ludicrous, condescending, self-indulgent ego-trip than the one she’s heading on. This song is shaping up to be a complete and utter disaster. The best melody in the world can’t save these atrocious lyrics. And the more we learn of them, the worse the song looks: we’re only in for more rounds of horrendous lyrics!

Her straight fans aren’t going to accept this, and non-Monster gay ones are going to find this song to be highly condescending. We’re in for the Great Lady Gaga Backlash of 2011, folks! Hold onto your seats…

Gaga’s Cocaine Problem

Lady Gaga has “admitted” her cocaine problem to Neil Strauss, infamous for coaxing celebrity secrets:

Lady Gaga has admitted to author Neil Strauss that she suffered from “trauma” because when she was younger, she’d abused cocaine and alcohol. The eccentric singer was very straightforward with Neil about her past escapades during their interview together…

What was Neil about to get Lady Gaga to say? Well, she stated, “All of the trauma I caused to myself… There are some things that are so traumatic, I don’t even fully remember them.”

Admitted?

This is no headline. Lady Gaga’s cocaine use is (or, rather, should be) notorious for its ongoing nature. As she freely admitted to Vanity Fair a few months back, she does “dabble” in cocaine, off and on. A couple of times a year, apparently (yeah, okay). To Lady Gaga, this is part of the agony and ecstasy of fame, so she sees no problem with casually dropping a mention of it here and there.

But again, let me ask: what if Britney Spears admitted to dabbling in cocaine from time to time? What would the world say? But with Gaga, it’s dismissed: it’s just “Gaga being Gaga,” because the world knows, deep down, that there is something utterly farcical about this character played by Stefani Germanotta. This isn’t good for her fans — who are highly impressionable — or for her: anyone even dabbling in cocaine has a serious problem and needs help. There’s no evidence that she is receiving any — or even wants any.

10 Songs You’ve Almost Certainly Never Heard — But Should. Now.

Most visitors to this site are pop fans, I presume. I’d like to introduce you to some other (mostly) female-fronted music — most of it with pop sensibilities — that’s a bit obscure. Much of it is metal — and some of it is quite heavy — but I would ask that you give it a chance.
If you’re willing to try ’em out, I would point pop listeners to tracks 2, 3, 5, and 6. Welcome to female-fronted metal!
Oh, and 11, too. The most indispensable pop song that nobody’s heard! Dammit. Go listen to that now!

1. “Falling Down” by The Birthday Massacrehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=koQwGlVbde0 — Let’s start out with something relatively mainstream. The Birthday Massacre blend synthpop, gothic rock, and a mainstream, Hot Topic-style sensibility into their music. This song is absolutely captivating. A mid-to-uptempo track that evokes a sentiment roughly akin to “How could I have been so foolish?” (Gothic rock, female-fronted.)

2. “In for a Kill” by Tarja Turunenhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-x9T7Y9_FtA — 4:47 to 6:20 only (I also recommend the first 90 seconds of the video, representing the song “Anteroom of Death”). Tarja, the former lead singer of Nightwish, has crafted her second solo album, and this song is the standout. It’s got an incredible pop sensibility while still maintaining a sense of dread. Her accent is very thick, but if you can get past it — or even embrace it — then I have no idea why anyone would dislike this song. (Symphonic metal, solo female)

 

3. “Days of Crying” by Dawn of Destinyhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYZlHsn6BNE — Damn. What I really wanted was the song “In Between,” a six-minute epic that more perfectly captures the will to triumph than anything I’ve ever heard. However, this will have to do! This power metal steamroller is a perfect distillation of everything that I love about this sadly-unknown band. Listen to it and stand in awe! (Power metal, female-fronted)

 

4. “Cet Enfer Au Paradis” by Dark Sanctuaryhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gMR02KZXEI — Quite possibly the most gorgeous, heartbreaking song I’ve ever heard. I can’t listen to it more than once at a time, but I always turn back to it. It’s incredibly powerful, especially through headphones — and the tension just builds and builds. (Neoclassical darkwave, female-fronted.)

 

5. “Destiny” by UnSun http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwcIHpCV1Qg — This song is absolutely breathtaking. A mid-tempo metal song with — oddly enough — a driving guitar solo — the mood evoked is of new horizons and beginning anew. “I don’t know where I’m going, but I’m on my way…” The chorus repeats frequently, but the melody is absolutely spellbinding. (Gothic metal, female-fronted)

 

6. “I Call Her Sickness” by Rawkfisthttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJhU6xYDmB4 — 0:42 to 1:20 only. The band is so obscure that all I could find of this video on YouTube is a forty-second clip from a video montage of “lesser-known bands.” The band’s name is absurd, but the chorus of the song — which is in the video — is very tense. (Gothic metal, female-fronted)

 

7. “Aiwass Aeon” by 1349http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Er_tYHanixI— This song is pure, nihilistic, destructive hatred! It slashes everything in its path. The riff is very menacing and the vocalist sounds like a demon. (Black metal, male-fronted)

 

8. “Gladiator” by Operatikahttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s86TeFOmI-g — This song, to me, feels like a call to arms: the fight is on the horizon, and you must face it! Infusing speed metal with a gothic sensibility, the only downside to this song is the mediocre production. But the tension-building is masterful. (Gothic speed metal, female-fronted)

 

9. “This Is How I Disappear” by My Chemical Romancehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSgFCzGBjcg — I’ve changed about four people’s minds about My Chemical Romance after making them listen to this song. No reason why your mind can’t be changed, too. Dramatic, theatrical, very intense — and the lyrics are quite good. My most-played rock song.

 

10. “Saturate Me” by Mandy Moorehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4143g-ZXI-Y — One of the lost pop gems of the 2000s. The chorus evokes feelings of being revived and having new life breathed into you. Plus — she sang this as a 17-year-old pop star. Love her to death, but has Britney ever sang any lyric akin to “Forsaken, left here in my barren desolate: my soul is evaporating, won’t you saturate me?” Ah!

Oh, and..

11. “One Shot (7th Heaven Remix)” by The Saturdayshttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U7Pj1xO28eU — Listen to this song. Right. Fucking. Now. If you haven’t done so yet — and I’ve pestered people with many status updates about this most amazing of pop songs. My most-played pop song of all-time, this song is what would happen if you caught ABBA on a good day, set them up in a studio in 2010, and trained them to work with modern-day production tools. Everything a pop song should be. I’ve listened to this song hundreds of times and it’s still spellbinding, to me.

 

Also check out:

“On and On” by Agnes

“Last Shut of Your Eyes” by Visions of Atlantis

“Frozen Garden” by The Crest

“Funeral for Yesterday” by Kittie

“The Death of Love” by Cradle of Filth

“Out In the Real World” by Stream of Passion

“Cosmic Keys to My Creations and Times” by Emperor

“This Is My Life” by Fefe Dobson

“Fly On the Wall” by tATu

“Don’t Cry Out” by Shiny Toy Guns

“Virtue and Vice” by Delain

The Autotune Myth

It’s the new buzzword amongst pop music’s critics: Autotune. Run a quick Google search and you can find a plethora of complaints: “Everything on the radio is ‘autotuned'”; an artist’s voice has been “autotuned to death”; “Autotune is killing music.” Some hack in the comments section said that “Hold It Against Me” was marred by “Britney’s autotuned voice.”

Please. This stupid cliche is debasing music criticism — and people don’t even understand what Autotune actually is.

Myth: Autotune can make a bad singer sound good

Although the term carries connotations of magically transforming awful singers into divas, “Autotune” is nothing more than simple pitch correction. If an artist is somewhat off on a note — if that A-sharp just didn’t ring unequivocally — it can be tweaked to make it clear and consistent. If a producer wants to play around with the melody of a song, he can alter the pitch even further. The most ‘autotuned’ song I’ve listened to in a while is “Animal (Billboard Remix)” by Ke$ha. Compare the original with the remix.

If you want to make a bad singer sound tolerable, then adding reverb, echo effect, vocal layering, and endless harmonies is your best bet. Terrible tone will still be terrible, regardless of whether that note is an F or a G. (Witness Heidi Montag’s “Superficial”: nothing can cover the fact that she simply is not a very good singer.)

Myth: Autotune is only found in Top 40 music

Autotune is used by rock singers, metal bands, soul divas, and gospel artists. It’s meant — like other vocal effects — to add gloss to a professional, studio-quality recording. It didn’t start with Cher, Daft Punk, or T-Pain — they simply found that they could play around with pitch-correction to create a futuristic effect. But autotune on its own is very common and is hardly limited to Top-40 music.

Myth: Autotune is harming music

Who wants to listen to a second-rate rendition of a quality song? When I hear a song, I want it to come through crisp, clean, and clear: just as the songwriters and singers idealize it. “Animal” is not merely a verdict on Ke$ha as the vocalist, but on Greg Kurstin, Dr. Luke, Pebe Sebert, and the small army of producers and engineers behind it. It’s meant to be a finished product: our judgment of Ke$ha’s vocal abilities, in a vacuum, is an entirely separate matter. I want to hear that song as it was meant to be heard — and so do all of the short-sighted critics, whether they want to admit it or not. If purity of recording is what you want, that can be found in black metal and the Juno soundtrack — they sure ain’t usin’ pitch correction there. But few people actually prefer that music to a good pop or rock song.

So stop complaining.