October 9, 2009
Caught in a bad romance.
My problem with Lady Gaga has always been about the music: I don't like it. It's catchy pop; she does have a handle, for sure, on melody, but she relies on a lot of gimmickry. It's all surface with Gaga, no depth. Aggressive bravado in a bad wig.
But I've also said that if she ever released a song I liked, I'd tell you. Her new single, the Bon Jovi-in-Ibiza raver Bad Romance is - for the most part - Gaga/RedOne by numbers.
The chorus is beautiful. When she actually sings in a full, throaty voice she transforms into a sort of Eurodisco Joan Baez. That voice first appears about one minute in and you instinctively want to hum along with the (anthemic) ohhhhhhs. The moment is ruined when she reverts back to her trademark ba ba oh la la ca ca and it gets even worse when she channels a drunken lounge singer on the verses.
The sound of Bad Romance may be a conscious attempt to close out The Fame "cycle" by sticking to the sound of the debut. I would not be surprised if she follows this up with a completely new set of collaborators. If she's as smart as she seems to be, that's what will happen.
So this is where I stand music-wise. I do admire her forthrightness in urging fans to attend this weekend's Equality March in DC. She'll be here for the HRC dinner with Obama, so her commitment is genuine.
Hear Bad Romance via youtube