Monthly Archives: December 2013

A few words on the worst song ever written

less than five years ago a song was unleashed on to the world that few were ready for, with many coming to rue its existence entirely. This auto-tuned monstrosity featured lyrics that were overly simple, entirely pointless and frustratingly repetitive. Even with the musical abomination that was the first 3/4’s of the song, a strange and bizarre low point was eventually reached when the singer apparently gave up reciting coherent sentences and instead switched to practically listing off the days of the week in order. For weeks and months and years after this melody-less atrocity had bombarded ear drums across the world it, it refused to go away, becoming a cultural reference point that much better music of the day never even came close to. Even to this day, human beings all over the world struggle to push this unpleasant experience from the recesses of their mind. I am of course talking about I Gotta Feeling by the Black Eyed Peas.

Strangely though when you compare the reaction to that song to the one received by the musical stylings of a thirteen year girl that was released two years later then the entire experience just becomes baffling. Arguably every single irritating thing about Rebecca Black’s Friday applies equally to I Gotta Feeling. But whereas most people were willing to acknowledge Friday as a god awful piece of musical unpleasantness, I Gotta Feeling became the number one downloaded track on iTunes. It almost defies belief. Both tracks may fall into the same lyrically stagnant, tone-deaf traps but it could be legitimately argued that I Gotta Feeling is the worst track because of it. While Rebecca Black was recording a song because she enjoyed music and theatre, posting it to a quiet corner of the internet where the world could thankfully and gratefully continue their existence without ever having to hear it, the Black Eyed Peas released on their fucking album resulting in it being played all over radio and television. Those of us wishing to avoid it were just out of luck.

In a sentence from Alice in Wonderland the King explains to Alice “Begin at the beginning, and go on till you come to the end: then stop.” I generally find this to be good advice in most situations, including song writing. And in light of this you really have to give full marks to Rebecca. Her song starts with her waking up, then goes on to expresses befuddlement over where to sit down, accurately summarizes the way the days are arranged in the second half of the week, which brings us neatly to the end of the song. Compare this to the Black Eyed Peas who seem to struggle to get past the beginning for almost half the song (the first two minutes is entirely made up of the sentence “I gotta feeling that tonight’s gonna be a good night” on repeat), and then becomes a random and bizarre arrangement of misappropriated Hebrew words along side nonsensical gibberish and a verse that is made up almost exclusively of the words “Let’s do it and do it” repeated over and over again.

In short, I could happily tolerate a planet that universally despised Friday (hell, even Rebecca Black herself cringes when she listens to is) if it wasn’t also the same planet that actively allowed I Gotta Feeling to batter and bombard the ear drums of the rest of us. I’m not even just picking on Earth with this, if any other planet we may make contact with in the future turned out to have done the same I would support nuking it from orbit. Sure, some may say that’s an over reaction, but I say we should strap those people to the nuke for their wishy-washy attitude to terrible music. No planet, society or culture which made I Gotta Feeling the most downloaded track on iTunes has anything to say about Friday or any other topic that’s vaguely related to music.

Advertisements

Scottish independence; vote yes and save yourself the trouble

As 2014 approaches it’s a time for Brits up and down this island (and a few on the next island for reasons of historic stupidity) to reflect on the inevitable doom that we’re facing as a nation. Not in any physical sense of course, but in the sense that one third of the island is going to send it’s elected representatives to sit in a different building to the rest of the island’s politicians. Don’t let the fact that we’re still going to be living on the same island, and driving on each others roads, and working in each other cities, and shopping at each others stores, and paying ridiculous prices for each others crap just because it looks vaguely touristy fool you into not caring. This is big.

No doubt the reactions will vary along several forms of disagreement, such as the ignorant (“If the Scots don’t want to be British then they can just fuck off out of Britain” is what I imagine they sound like) VS the straight out bizarre (such as this guy who sounds like he’s attempting to claim pre-emptive asylum). Or maybe the foaming at the mouth zealot who is outraged at the very thought that anyone would ever dare to disagree with what he thinks should happen, to those of complete indifference who are rolling their eyes so hard at the idea of forming an opinion about politics that now their world seems like an infinitely reaching spiral of rotating light and are not pleased that the opinionated are having that kind of effect of them.

Of course, the actual result would almost certainly be less of a Scandinavian style socialist utopia separated at the hip from an Anglo-Saxon style, social darwinist, corporate hell-hole as much as would be two near equally annoying governments, sharing one island and bickering like spoilt siblings over who has to pay what portion of the debt and who gets to claim how many missiles as their own. Of course both would be happy to claim the imperialist tradition when establishing their credentials, while being quick to move away from it when establishing responsibility, but lets not focus on that aspect of the debate lest someone comes off looking bad.

Assuming the majority say yes when the question is popped on the infamous date then I’m willing to place a large bet right here and now. In 14 years time I will bet that an inexplicably large minority of people will go on record as disavowing the decision to go for independence. And while many convoluted and/or weakly specific explanations will be offered up, the actual reason will be simple. Politics and government is bullshit. It’s bullshit Scandinavian style and it’s be bullshit Anglo-Saxon style. And when offered the opportunity to reminisce on bullshit that they’re not experiencing in that exact moment a lot of people will say “Yeah, actually the old stuff was better.”

So faced with this nonsense is there any manner in which a person can figure out a way to reach a right decision? Well, put simply, yes there is. The nationalists will never disappear. In fact, nationalism requires a bigger neighbour to define yourself against as a way of definitively disregarding your differences as a group, and as long as a United Kingdom exists the Scottish Nationalists will always have that. In other words the longer Scotland stays a part of the UK, the more the question will come up. Illuminated with that light is it not worth saying yes now and shutting those self important pricks up forever?