By On August 25, 2013 In Editor's picks, Editorial Submissions, Music


Let’s talk about art since it’s apparently in the heart of our Lady of Pop’s comeback project. What is ‘Artpop’? Is it the most obvious (and pathetic) attempt ever to revive pop art? Is it the art of being popular (for no good reasons)? Or does it simply mean ‘artful pop’ like, say, for example, ‘Sgt Pepper’, ‘Ziggy Stardust’, ‘Songs In The Key Of Life’, ‘OK Computer’ (the list goes on and on)?

Last week, when I first heard Lady GaGa’s new single ‘Applause’, I got angry (seriously pissed off) and I tweeted “So Lady GaGa thinks she invented artful pop music. The Beatles can just go fuck themselves then, right?” I’ll admit I might have a teensy bit overreacted to this dumb song that has no real importance anyway. But I was angry and here’s why.

Let’s start with the music since it’s quite simple to describe. It’s a dance song with an average beat and chords we’ve heard a million times before. It’s got a thing I kinda liked: its Hi-NRG vibe, which is nothing to wake up the dead for but it’s pretty cool. The melody is forgettable. The structure is the usual verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus formula. Overall, it’s not bad but it sure isn’t anything fresh or interesting.

So let’s move on to the lyrics and especially this one horrible, tragic, criminal line: “pop culture was in art, now art’s in pop culture in me”. Pardon my french but WHAT THE FUCK does that mean? Please, somebody, anybody explain it to me. I’m still agonising over this sentence. Does it mean what I think it means? How pretentious can a person be? Let’s look at the previous line ; maybe in context it’ll be clearer. “One second I’m a Koons, then suddenly the Koons is me”

Nope, not clearer and still utterly infuriating! Apart from that atrocious verse, ‘Applause’ is about teaching you how to clap your hands (“Put your hands up, make ’em touch”) and basically living for the fame (“Live for the way that you cheer and scream for me”). Now I’m a musician too, not a very successful one clearly but one thing that will always be true is that I live for the music and nothing else. I think that’s the least you can do when you want to call yourself a musician, especially if you are a self-proclaimed visionary artist like GaGa.

You know what? I am pissed off because I used to like Lady GaGa and I still think ‘Bad Romance’ is one of the best song from the last decade. But since ‘Born This Way’, she has only disappointed up to the breaking point of this new single. Now she’s just unbearable.

Moving on to the music video now, there’s not much to say about it. It’s just GaGa with various outfits, wigs, make up and visual effects and it’s just plain bad. Let me sum it up for you. “Here I am on a bed with a black wig. Here I am with black angel wings. Oh look! Here I am with bruises! Here I am now with wet clown make up! Now I have a glittery tail! Now I’m wearing nothing but a black bikini!” It goes on and on. I guess it’s supposed to be artsy and sexy. Whatever! I just can’t talk about it anymore. I’m too bored with it.

I’d like to know where the fun is in hearing “provocative” lyrics that have no actual meaning, in watching a “sexy” video that has no heat or passion, in listening to new music that has absolutely no freshness or originality. 

Even in its smallest manifestation, art is not an empty shell but a meaningful ocean of sounds, shapes and colors. Art is not a fashionista but a design. Art is not the artist. It’s their work. And even in marketing terms, art is not a promo campaign but a product worth a lot more than its retail price.

What I wish people would understand is that Lady GaGa’s whole strategy is to pretend that her marketing is art just as much as her music (which she claims is art but I for one would not call it that). Apart from spending a lot of money on extravagant clothes, which are works of art but just not hers, Lady GaGa just makes music that sounds like everybody else’s music. ‘Applause’ is an insult to art and music. Please don’t let GaGa fool you. if there ever was art in her, now there’s only vanity and greed.

‘Artpop’ comes out in November. We’ll see if she still has anything relevant to say but I honestly doubt it.

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