Aug 18, 2013

Katy vs Gaga - adding my spin to the heap

Ok so...everybody knows that both Katy Perry and Lady Gaga dropped new singles last week.  Katy teases her new era with a big gold truck and Gaga returns to the spotlight being all "artsy", paint splotched on her face.  Really?  Can we say "cheese" and "desperation" on both sides of this Pop Princess coin?

Probably my biggest problem with both these "artists" was that they both used to actually be artists with some genuine integrity.  Katy cut her teeth on Warped Tour and Stephanie played seedy clubs in the East Village.  Now they are just two desperate women locked into the corporate music game which they are losing.  Today the Lady appeared to be off her meds, taking some very nasty shots across Perez Hilton's bow...who's the bully now Mama Monster?  Katy seems to be laying low hoping to stay out of media and Gaga's crosshairs.

But apparently neither song has been released to the radio as I combed the 8/24 Billboard charts and find no evidence them on any of the charts.  So have the lights been doused on these girls?  Are their three years up?  Along with Beiber's it appears so.  No longer the sweethearts.  Even Bruno seems to be hanging on by a wing and a prayer.  Daft Punk got some much deserved recognition but trust it is not for Nile Rodgers' brilliant funk guitar licks on "Get Lucky" that it is still charting.  Only Pharell's pedigree (and weak ass vocals) got this one spinning.  Will it provide DP with cred they deserve and increase sales of "Random Access Memories"?  Probably not.

Katy and Gaga both made a choice to be either great musicians/artists or take the money and go for the "top".  In my opinion they both made the wrong choice.  Neither of these singles are that great.  Both have succumbed to the cookie-cutter song models.  For Stephanie's talent she should be putting out that cutting edge record, that risk taker by now.  She can write and I believe she can write far better than this song.  I feel like the new album will just be more of the same old same old as will Katy's.  The whole point of continuing in your art is to progress, to push the envelope and to take a risk.  Every band/solo artist I am a strong fan of has taken those risks. Sure some put out albums that tanked.  Some records took fans a while to come around forgive so to speak and then take off the blinders and listen with open ears and hearts.  As for "Roar" based on the number of live-feed performances I've seen of hers, again I'm scared to hear a non-studio version.  I don't think her voice can hold-up to the power this song needs and was given with a lot of electronic assistance.

So it's time to get back to "The Best Pop Music Not Spinning On the Radio".  I'll start with Young London who I got to see live for a second time, this one on Warped Tour and got to interview.  Talk about a passion for writing great pop-dance rock.  In the coming weeks I will get you a review of William Beckett's new album and introduce you to Atomic Tom, Simon Curtis and talk about the returns of the greats from Fueled by Raman...Fallout Boy, Gym Class Heroes and Panic at The Disco.