Benjamin2011-02-28
Ke$ha and Gaga take turns astounding me.

Lady Gaga has a new music video, and I was really impressed with it. And disappointed in the song that went along with it. I find it interesting that her visual work is typically smart, challenging, and original, while her musical work runs the gamut from catchy to tepid, and it almost always derivative. \"Born This Way\" is worse than many (I regularly work out to The Fame, and while that\'s not genius music, it\'s a lot more fun than this song).

The disconnect between her video and her audio output is curious, like Matthew Barney doing car commercials or, as someone joked in the the Metafilter discussion, like Jodorowsky doing Iron Man 3. One thought is that in order to have the budget she needs for her performance art, she has to have mega main stream appeal.

Maybe comparing her performance pieces / videos to her music is like comparing the reimbursement paperwork I file to the theatre that I create--who cares what you do during your day job? But then again, I don\'t do theatre based on my reimbursement requests, and Gaga showcases that dreadful song throughout her weird, disturbing, bizarre music video. (Warning: not as cool as Telephone or Bad Romance, and better at the beginning... also very icky.)

As Astro Zombie describes the video,

\"There\'s a sort of genius to this. The song is very light, radio-friendly dance music with a generalized pro-gay message. And the video is bonkers. At points its genuinely disturbing -- the bisexual orgy in the swirling paint is reminiscent of the climax to the horror satire \"Class.\" The the images of childbirth cleverly use that mirrored lens effect to create a series of vulvas, and childbirth is accompanied by spraying liquids and weird egg things popping out. And then, out of the blue, she turns into a skeleton. Just describing it makes me like it more and more.\"
I should also add that, personally, I hate the soulless arrangement--someone on Metafilter was kind enough to link to ten-year-old Maria Aragon\'s cover, and it\'s not such a bad song, really, and Gaga seems to have appreciated the cover. However as it stands in the video, that actual music is pretty forgettable.

But wait! Now I know (thanks to another fellow on Metafilter called elsewhen) that Ke$ha also has a new music video out (directed by Chris Marrs Piliero), that it also features unicorns, and that I have to say it\'s better in every single way.

For one thing, although the song \"Blow\" is pretty uninteresting, it\'s a hell of a lot better than \"Born This Way\". Politically, I suppose it\'s less admirable, but the politics of \"Born This Way\" aren\'t terribly clear.

For another thing, James van der Beek says that muenster is \"like edible lactose gold\". For another thing... no, just watch the video. It starts out fantastic, and it gets better and better and better.

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