There's a Top 40 trend, a few years old now, toward making pop music on the radio sound more like dance music from the club: electronic instrumentation, thumping beats, repetitive choruses, AutoTune. Lyrically, there's a violent uptick in mentions of being young, staying up late enough to see the sun, and burning things, all of which are usually described in the first-person plural—not "I want this" or "you said that" but "we did this." Tonight, we are young, so let's set the world on fire. Let's go crazy, crazy, crazy, till we see the sun. Let's make the most of the night like we're gonna die young. We gonna let it [...]
"Only white women have the privilege of reclaiming the word 'slut' without facing any real social penalty"
I am all for marginalized groups reclaiming words that were once used to shame and dehumanize them…. [But] if we are going to advocate against “slut-shaming,” and for owning the word “slut,” we cannot do so without paying attention to the facts. We must ask, who are the women being defended against “slut-shaming,” and who are the women being left to defend themselves?
I totally disagree with the piece's celebrity compare-and-contrast scenario [...]
"Wrecking Ball" is the no. 1 song on Billboard's Hot 100 for the second straight week, and there is nothing we can do about it, because it is catchy as hell. We CAN, however, indulge in these two covers instead of watching a 20-year-old lick a mallet.
First, from the blessed Haim sisters, the women who are pulling off the middle part in 2013, a Haimified take on BBC 1 yesterday:
And from the Gregory Brothers, the men who auto-tune the news, a country version:
Miley Cyrus brought giant stuffed teddy bears and a foam finger to the VMAs this year. She stuck out her tongue indiscriminately, she slapped the asses of some anonymous black women, she stripped to her underwear and bent over in front of Robin Thicke, and and we all pondered again this ancient transition from “good girl” to pop vixen and wondered how we’re supposed to feel. What of this ephemeral existence—and why all the goddamn teddy bears?
Initially, watching the video for “We Can’t Stop,” I couldn’t decide if Miley was at all ironically self-aware; if she was conscious of the messages her reinvention was sending, of the way her [...]
have you seen mileys new video nope holyyyys hit get thee to a screen
This is the gchat conversation I had with my sister after the first time I watched the video for “We Can’t Stop”—the video that broke Vevo before naked Miley swung back in on a “Wrecking Ball” to shatter the record again. “We Can’t Stop” is an amazing song. But it’s an even better music video. It has my number, and the director, Diane Martel, has the passwords for all my logins, the code to unlock my phone, and access to my HBOGo account.
Martel directed two of the years best/worst and most argued-about music videos—and to [...]
At Autostraddle, an opus on a "a chain of events has been put into motion which no force in heaven or earth can stop until it's run its course and we are left with the smoking, burnt-out ruins of a culture."
Caitlin Moran has already started her open letter to Amanda Palmer about how everything a woman does is okay, because she's a woman and that's what feminism means. Elizabeth Wurtzel will write an open letter to Moran on The Daily Beast, suggesting that she lose weight and consider some light cosmetic surgery, and Wurtzel's letter will then devolve into a 900-word rant that seems to [...]
-De los Video Music Awards de MTV?
She stands against a blank plane, eyes blue, eyelashes weighted down in black ink. Her mouth is parted, painted in bright red pigment like the women of the night in the outskirts of La Playa. She has come from the west. A single salt-laden tear hovers and falls. Memories of twerking bears and motor-boating a big butt start to form but quickly vaporize into a faint smell of stale weed. The sky is an unmodulated grey and lies heavy in a post-roofie molly [...]
Zadie Smith: "If I truly believed that being a corpse was my only guaranteed future, I'd get rid of my iPhone"
Zadie Smith's done it again: her latest New York Review of Books essay, "Man vs. Corpse," is a gentle, vivid meditation on the impossibility of imagining yourself dead.
Walking corpses—zombies—follow us everywhere, through novels, television, cinema. Back in the real world, ordinary citizens turn survivalist, ready to scale a mountain of corpses if it means enduring. Either way, death is what happens to everyone else. By contrast, the future in which I am dead is not a future at all. It has no reality. If it did—if I truly believed that being a corpse was not only a possible future but my only guaranteed future—I’d do all kinds of [...]
There is more new music out today than anyone really knows what to do with, but here goes: first off, the beautiful, middle-parted Haim sisters have finally released Days Are Gone, which Jon Caramanica calls a "rapturous throwback" of an album. I don't hear many weak moments on it, either—if you're like me, maybe you've tired of "Falling" and "The Wire," but there's more to be had here. A few have complained that the album feels too comparatively polished to Haim's live performances, but that's really just a testament to their shows, which they often end by banging the shit out [...]
Maybe you've read all you needed to read about young Miley; maybe you never needed a single word about her in the first place. I humbly offer up two codas to your intake: in the dumb-video category, you've got "Breaking Bad's Hank and Marie watch the Video Music Awards," which shouldn't take too much of your brainpower to process. In the smart-response-you-were-waiting-to-read category, you've got Tressie McMillan Cottom on Miley's backup dancers and the historical appropriation of black women's bodies:
Fat non-normative black female bodies are kith and kin with historical caricatures of black women as work sites, production units, subjects of victimless sexual [...]