This song is Weird Al’s tribute to the old Schoolhouse Rock videos of which almost everyone my age or older harbors affectionate memories. The song is clever in that particular Weird Al way, featuring, fittingly enough, some of the most sophisticated and literate lyrics of his career so far.
Archives for July 2014
5 Seconds of Summer fervently insist in all their public utterances that they’re a legitimate pop-punk band, but the fact that their hits are mostly sappy ballads like this make it clear that the boy-band stigma they’ve been tagged with is something they’ve earned. Apart from being a completely uninteresting song, we’ve already got an infinitely better hit with exactly the same subject matter, and it came out as recently as last year…Bruno Mars’ “When I Was Your Man”. So why listen to this schlocky teenybopper pseudo-punk when you could be listening to a great modern soul ballad that quite seriously has almost exactly the same lyrical content?
Lee Brice always was one of the better modern country artists, and what makes this song a breath of fresh air on the modern country scene, in addition to its very attractive instrumentation, is the fact that is has actual emotional content. It’s a really moving love song with intelligent lyrics, and a good sign regarding the content of Brice’s upcoming album.
Darker, more emotional variations on the standard bro-country party-song formula seem to be cropping up everywhere these days, and it makes sense that Lady Antebellum, as the best and classiest act in modern country, would be leading the charge. Don’t get me wrong, this is still very much a good-time song, but it’s a good-time song with an emotional center, and that actually makes it much more rousing and lively than most of the vapid party anthems heard on Country radio today.
This song was written and produced by the mastermind behind Katy Perry and Kesha’s careers, but it’s definitely b-list work on his part, a totally forgettable little triviality about singing in the shower, and utterly dispensable even by the standards of pre-packaged formula pop.
Once again, 5 Seconds of Summer have drawn on a songwriter from a more legit Pop-Punk outfit to lend credibility to their glorified boy-band. For those who don’t know, Good Charlotte basically _were_ 5 Seconds of Summer a decade or so prior…the Emo-Pop prettyboys who became the latest trend among adolescent girls for a brief window. Granted, they sucked slightly less than 5SoS, and thus this song is not as bad as the stuff 5SoS usually write on their own. But Good Charlotte are one of the main reasons Pop-Punk is associated with Emo culture, and this is as adolescent and melodramatic as anything they produced in their heyday.
Producer Zedd has a history of working well with big female belt voices (Foxes, Hayley Williams), and here, he offers a sweeping house-music power-ballad perfectly suited to Grande’s voice. This is the best thing Grande has released to date, not to mention Zedd’s best single since “Clarity”.
Ever since her first mixtape, In Case We Die, Tinashe has been one of the Indie R&B genre’s most promising talents. This is her mainstream debut and first Top Forty hit, and while DJ Mustard’s trademark dull production and Schoolboy Q’s extremely explicit rap verse do detract from the effect somewhat, the song itself is the finest Indie R&B crossover hit since Rihanna and Mikky Ekko’s “Stay”, and represents a huge stride for the genre in terms of mainstream recognition.