Join 3,561 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


o.O
June 21, 2011 8:34 AM   Subscribe

Weird Al: Perform this Way. (YouTube. Previously / On Vevo)
posted by zarq (132 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
His new album, Alpocalypse, was released today and includes another Gaga parody called Polka Face. Sample can be heard at Amazon.
posted by zarq at 8:36 AM on June 21, 2011


BEES?
posted by The Whelk at 8:36 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


The album is also 4 bucks (today only? not sure) on Amazon MP3.
posted by kmz at 8:39 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


Well, I certainly wish I could unsee that.
posted by schmod at 8:40 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


Al's been playing Polka Face in concert for over a year now. Some videos are available on YouTube
posted by zarq at 8:40 AM on June 21, 2011


Wait so did they CGI his face onto someone's body? Because his face sure does seem to wobble around a lot, and that's weird.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:40 AM on June 21, 2011


Shakespeherian, you're gonna get old too, one day.
posted by boo_radley at 8:43 AM on June 21, 2011 [7 favorites]


Hopefully by then I'll be able to afford a team of graphics specialists to follow me around and make me look lithe and nimble.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:45 AM on June 21, 2011 [6 favorites]


It has been so nice to grow up with Weird Al putting out a new song every so often. Thanks Al!
posted by NotMyself at 8:46 AM on June 21, 2011 [9 favorites]


at 1:49 the wig/outfit/pose makes him (her? ) look almost exactly like Jenna from 30 Rock and that was strange.
posted by The Whelk at 8:46 AM on June 21, 2011 [4 favorites]


shakespeherian: "Wait so did they CGI his face onto someone's body? Because his face sure does seem to wobble around a lot, and that's weird."

Otherwise, he has more cleavage and a flatter crotch than one might expect.
posted by zarq at 8:47 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


I am willing to admit I have not been keeping up with all of Lady Gaga's outfits, but there were some damn fine costumes in there. Good work, Weird Al.
posted by Phredward at 8:48 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Not just gagafilter. Not just alfilter.

Algafilter.
posted by Trurl at 8:50 AM on June 21, 2011 [15 favorites]


Otherwise, he has more cleavage and a flatter crotch than one might expect.

He's no Lois Einhorn, that's for sure.
posted by chavenet at 8:50 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Algafilter.

It's the medium we grow in.
posted by The Whelk at 8:53 AM on June 21, 2011 [30 favorites]


Good video, but he kind of left the audio out to dry... sounds like a demo.
posted by knilstad at 8:53 AM on June 21, 2011


Algafilter.

I just installed one of those in my aquarium.
posted by HostBryan at 8:54 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


I believe I said last time: This demonstrates the applicability of Poe's Law to Lady Gaga.
posted by dhartung at 8:55 AM on June 21, 2011


You can stream the entire album here.
posted by mikepop at 8:56 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


The Whelk: "at 1:49 the wig/outfit/pose makes him (her? ) look almost exactly like Jenna from 30 Rock and that was strange."

Really? I was thinking it looked closer to Will Forte dressed in drag as Jenna. (Which I maintain is one of the show's best running gags)
posted by schmod at 8:57 AM on June 21, 2011


at 1:49 the wig/outfit/pose makes him (her? ) look almost exactly like Jenna from 30 Rock and that was strange

Yes! I saw that as well.
posted by mikepop at 8:58 AM on June 21, 2011


Al polka lips.
posted by surrendering monkey at 8:59 AM on June 21, 2011


zarq: "Otherwise, he has more cleavage and a flatter crotch than one might expect."

Maybe that's supposed to be a subtle subversion of the conspiracy theories that Lady GaGa is a dude or a hermaphrodite?
posted by schmod at 8:59 AM on June 21, 2011


This would have been better w/out the CGI.
posted by stormpooper at 9:07 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


I'm just going to say it: I haven't seen the original video, but I kind of like Gaga and her version had to be better.

(I like Weird Al too.)
posted by DU at 9:10 AM on June 21, 2011


Back from a harrowing YouTube adventure and I hastily admit how wrong I was. Both videos are terrible.
posted by DU at 9:14 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


P-P-P-Polka Face.
I saw Weird Al live last year and it was so much fun. Crowd was full of nerdy middle-school kids and their corny-joke dads. Good times.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 9:15 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


His new album is available for streaming here in the US or here in Canada. These links are from his twitter stream and you should go buy his album anyway.
posted by Gary at 9:16 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Oh, Mikepop beat me to the exclaim.ca link, which I guess works everywhere.
posted by Gary at 9:19 AM on June 21, 2011


Weird Al as a woman looks like Molly Shannon to me.
posted by banished at 9:21 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


I showed this to my Lady Gaga loving tween last night. Her initial reaction was that it was "really mean". I took some time to explain who Weird Al is and what he does, and that different artists feel differently about being parodied, etc. After that, she said the video was "strange and disturbing" which I thought was pretty funny considering the artist in question.
posted by stinkycheese at 9:25 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


This demonstrates the applicability of Poe's Law to Lady Gaga.

"Nevermore"?
posted by Nomyte at 9:28 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


These links are from his twitter stream and you should go buy his album anyway.

It's also only $4 for the mp3 album on amazon today. I'd feel bad about paying this little for the album, but since I've bought half the singles already, it's a wash.
posted by zabuni at 9:29 AM on June 21, 2011


The performance trickery of using a badly-tracked CG head is easily as vulnerable to parody as wearing weird costumes.
posted by gorgor_balabala at 9:40 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I kept getting flashes of Camilla Parker Bowles (Mrs Prince Charles). Smashing!
posted by Jody Tresidder at 9:43 AM on June 21, 2011


Is this post a dup? I could swear we just finished the conversation about how CGI is often bad because it enables directors to create abominable impossibilities limited only by the depraved depths of their imaginations.


I actually liked the video...
posted by roystgnr at 9:45 AM on June 21, 2011


Love it!

I've often wished that, instead of my life, I was living the Weird Al cover of it.
posted by kinnakeet at 9:48 AM on June 21, 2011 [5 favorites]


Algafilter.

??
Wouldn't that be AlGagFilter?
posted by BlueHorse at 9:49 AM on June 21, 2011


roystgnr: "Is this post a dup?"

Nope.
posted by zarq at 9:53 AM on June 21, 2011


I'm confused. Is this a Jane Krasinski video?
posted by eperker at 9:54 AM on June 21, 2011


I was walking down Queen Street the other day and chanced upon Gaga's soundcheck for the MuchMusic Video Awards. Other than green hair, she was dressed positively normal, a black tank top and fishnets. It was... jarring.
posted by yellowbinder at 9:57 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Krakowski
posted by hermitosis at 9:59 AM on June 21, 2011


yellowbinder: "I was walking down Queen Street the other day and chanced upon Gaga's soundcheck for the MuchMusic Video Awards. Other than green hair, she was dressed positively normal, a black tank top and fishnets. It was... jarring."

I was expecting your story to end with "...and then suddenly, an alien burst out of her chest..."
posted by zarq at 10:06 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


Huh. After all the fuss about the earlier "leaked" version, I assumed (hoped?) that the final version would be mixed and mastered better than a bad home demo. I assumed wrong.
posted by The World Famous at 10:09 AM on June 21, 2011


It sounds better on the streaming album thingy.

It's a pretty good album, actually. Worth it for the "ohhhh" in the "Baby" part of Polka Face.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:12 AM on June 21, 2011


Yeah, I feel like "Perform This Way" is going to be the weakest song on this album, actually. The rest is brilliant, as always. Love it.
posted by koeselitz at 10:16 AM on June 21, 2011


Not a great fan of either Weird Al or Lady GaGa, but this is great. Weird Al playing a version of accordion by madvillain/DOOM helped by The Roots
posted by djstig at 10:22 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Oh god. I have discovered a new fetish.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:41 AM on June 21, 2011


Astro Zombie: "Oh god. I have discovered a new fetish."

Is it transvestite nuns?
posted by boo_radley at 10:55 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


...wearing bees and skull tattoos.


And wielding a ruler
posted by zarq at 10:56 AM on June 21, 2011



Is it transvestite nuns?

This is the answer to many questions.
posted by The Whelk at 10:57 AM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


The one to blame.
posted by Ardiril at 11:03 AM on June 21, 2011


I know he doesn't want to blow umpteempth dollars on the video, but I honestly felt the CGI composting for his face could have been done better. That said, what the hell do I know, and surely some of those costumes were fun.
posted by cavalier at 11:05 AM on June 21, 2011


Yeah, I feel like "Perform This Way" is going to be the weakest song on this album, actually.

Everything about the song and video feel rushed. Compared to the brilliance of the Fat video, Weird Al doing CGI is really disappointing.

I imagine "Perform this Way" will be a lot better on tour when he dresses up himself.
posted by Gary at 11:06 AM on June 21, 2011


For my money, there's never been a better song than CNR. The video is great too.
posted by ericales at 11:07 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


I kept getting flashes of Camilla Parker Bowles (Mrs Prince Charles). Smashing!

I kept thinking Weird Al in drag looks like a bit like a severe Julianne Moore.
posted by hanoixan at 11:10 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


He should have pasted his face onto Donny Osmond dancing.
posted by charred husk at 11:11 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


as a response to gaga looking normal at the sound check...

she looked straight up smashing arriving in japan today.
posted by nadawi at 11:12 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Yes, we all know the song isn't that great. Well, neither is the original. I have the same strange "this sounds off" feeling about both.
posted by Malice at 11:23 AM on June 21, 2011


she looked straight up smashing arriving in japan today.

Wow, did she get promoted to commander of S.W.O.R.D.?
posted by Strange Interlude at 11:26 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Malice: "Yes, we all know the song isn't that great."

"We all" know no such thing, but thanks.
posted by zarq at 11:36 AM on June 21, 2011


I've been a fan of Al's since forever, and I completely adore Gaga, so this is wonderful to me. Thanks for posting it, Zarq!

(I saw Al at our Zoo last summer, and Polka Face was included in his Polka medley. Al gives GREAT live performances.)
posted by MissySedai at 11:59 AM on June 21, 2011


"We all" know no such thing, but thanks.

By "we all" I was referring to those who didn't like it in the first place.

Yeah yeah, lyrics are nice, good message (except the whole born this way thing that makes being gay seem like a disease), song still sucks.
posted by Malice at 12:01 PM on June 21, 2011


song still sucks.

At a gay dance club at 2am last Friday night, I discovered that you're wrong.

Dance music, like most things, relies on context.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:02 PM on June 21, 2011


song still sucks.

THANK YOU!!!!!! i've been thinking for the last few months that this was an excellent, catchy song with brilliant production, but you've helped me see what a bad person i was
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:03 PM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Malice: "(except the whole born this way thing that makes being gay seem like a disease), "

What?

The lyrics include the phrase, "I'm beautiful in my way because God makes no mistakes."

I'm completely not seeing what you're seeing.
posted by zarq at 12:04 PM on June 21, 2011


It really doesn't matter that you like it and I don't, we can't argue each other's opinions. It's pointless.
posted by Malice at 12:05 PM on June 21, 2011


It really doesn't matter that you like it and I don't, we can't argue each other's opinions. It's pointless.

Many people have learned how to have meaningful conversations while still holding different opinions. If you think there's no point, you can leave.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:06 PM on June 21, 2011


It really doesn't matter that you like it and I don't, we can't argue each other's opinions. It's pointless.

We can actually offer up reasons for our opinions, which offers room for discussion. Or, failing that, we can ask ourselves if the opinion direly needs expressing.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:07 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Also: Stop taking my dislike of the song personally. I never said every person who liked it was a bad person.

To Rory and Astro: Didn't seem like a meaningful discussion about each other's opinions if you ask me.
posted by Malice at 12:09 PM on June 21, 2011


Didn't seem like a meaningful discussion about each other's opinions if you ask me.

And you felt an urge to make sure it continued that way?
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:11 PM on June 21, 2011


Forgive me for not wanting to discuss

"THANK YOU!!!!!! i've been thinking for the last few months that this was an excellent, catchy song with brilliant production, but you've helped me see what a bad person i was".
posted by Malice at 12:12 PM on June 21, 2011


To Rory and Astro: Didn't seem like a meaningful discussion about each other's opinions if you ask me.

You have a habit of walking into threads to say you dislike things, and then getting pouty when this annoys people. The only reason I remember your name is that every time I see you post I think how well you picked your name.

Want to have a meaningful discussion? Awesome. You start. What do you think sucks about Born This Way? I think it's damn near immaculate in its songwriting/production. It shifts between a few different hooks so well that you barely have a moment where a hook or two aren't bombarding you. Compare to many pop songs with excellent choral hooks but absolutely nothing worth a damn in the verses. I also think that her use of a subtle driving beat underneath the slower patterns of the verse shows immaculate taste, and makes a slower, calmer sequence still incredibly danceable.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:13 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I do like when people accuse Lady Gaga of stealing from Madonna, perhaps because I was around when Madonna first started to become popular and remember the rampant accusations of theft that were leveled at her.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:15 PM on June 21, 2011


(By the way: Perform This Way falls a little flat for me, because Weird Al just doesn't have the production chops to reproduce the song effectively... but Polka Face is terrific. All his polkas are, but with this one in particular I felt that every parody section had great arrangements and great flow.)
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:15 PM on June 21, 2011


SO ANYWAY I like 'Born This Way' and I was listening to it yesterday when walking to the grocery store and it made me happy. I still like a handful of songs off her first album better than anything on the new album, but there's some curious quality to Gaga's music where at first I don't think I like a particular song ('Oh that isn't a good one,' I think) and then later I realize it's caught in my head and then later I realize that it's fantastic and I love it. So.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:15 PM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


You have a habit of walking into threads to say you dislike things, and then getting pouty when this annoys people. The only reason I remember your name is that every time I see you post I think how well you picked your name.

Want to have a meaningful discussion? Awesome. You start. What do you think sucks about Born This Way? I think it's damn near immaculate in its songwriting/production. It shifts between a few different hooks so well that you barely have a moment where a hook or two aren't bombarding you. Compare to many pop songs with excellent choral hooks but absolutely nothing worth a damn in the verses. I also think that her use of a subtle driving beat underneath the slower patterns of the verse shows immaculate taste, and makes a slower, calmer sequence still incredibly danceable.


Just because I leave a thread doesn't mean I get pouty. I often get busy and I have apologized for leaving threads before for that reason. I'm not the first person to drop off in a discussion.

Yes, I do enter threads a majority of the time with a negative opinion because a lot of what is posted on Metafilter is usually posted as 'outratefilter', such as circumcision threads, etc. I'm sorry you dislike my negativity. I'm not a very positive person.

In the original thread on this song, I believe, but I'm not sure, I posted what I didn't like about it. I also read opinions I agreed with. It's not catchy. I had to listen to it several times to even find a beat I liked in it. The lyrics are strangely written, the "put your paws up" is corny and in the music video itself, I find her to be very egotistical. More than usual for Lady Gaga, anyway.

No, I don't think it's her best work. Yes, I think the song sucks. Stating it sucks wasn't a personal attack on your or anyone else and frankly I'm surprised that everyone took it that way.
posted by Malice at 12:17 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


outragefilter*
posted by Malice at 12:18 PM on June 21, 2011


Malice, what songs do you like? I don't want to derail, but I think speaking positively about things is more interesting than speaking negatively about things, so: what things do you like to speak positively about?
posted by shakespeherian at 12:21 PM on June 21, 2011


What do you think sucks about Born This Way?

The mixing and mastering are more than a little clunky. As far as songwriting, it's far too derivative (and I'm being nice - the vocal melody of the chorus is directly lifted from the final pre-chorus of Express Yourself). The whole package is sort of a middling, lukewarm result. Danceable and catchy, but boring and overly-predictable. GaGa certainly got her money's worth when she hired the folks who wrote and produced it. And it's great played loud in a club, sure. But it's not a great song and the lyrics are really terrible in a whole list of ways, including that I cannot stand overtly-religious songs proclaiming the artist's theological viewpoints.
posted by The World Famous at 12:21 PM on June 21, 2011 [3 favorites]


What do you people expect from a user name like "Malice," everybody? If only there were a neologism to describe the humorous juxtaposition of user name and content. "Nicknappropos?" No, that won't do. We'll keep working on it, though. Maybe we'll come up with something that will catch on.
posted by infinitywaltz at 12:21 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm not a very positive person.

Then why do you get so upset when all you draw out of other posters is continued negativity? This confuses me.

Stating it sucks wasn't a personal attack on your or anyone else and frankly I'm surprised that everyone took it that way.

Of course it is. When you phrase your opinion like you think it's objective truth ("this song sucks" versus "I think this song sucks" like you just did), the implication is that you're stating something which ought to be obvious and agreed-upon. One of the first things they teach you when you're learning how to discuss opinions without being inflammatory is that you always make it clear that you're aware that your opinion is your opinion and just an opinion.

What's more, "sucks" is a strong word. It's stronger than "stinks", which is in itself a strong word, stronger than "is bad", which is also pretty strong. So when you post it you suggest a certain vehemence which immediately puts people who like/love the song on the defensive.

You do this over and over again and it seems to me like every time somebody gets annoyed with you. Have you not noticed this? You can't feign surprise at the notion that insulting something somebody else likes is bothersome behavior.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:24 PM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Malice, what songs do you like? I don't want to derail, but I think speaking positively about things is more interesting than speaking negatively about things, so: what things do you like to speak positively about?
posted by shakespeherian at 12:21 PM on June 21 [+] [!]


I like some Ludo, some classical, I like some Lady Gaga, some techno, Plain White T's, Pink Floyd, Far East Movement, etc. I have a very wide musical taste.


Rory, I don't relate to what you're saying simply because I don't get up in arms when someone says my favorite song sucks. It's just a song. My choice of words for describing that I don't like it (it sucks) is common language for someone saying they dislike something. I could have gone farther and said it was a shitty song, or a disgrace to music, so on and so forth. I feel it doesn't matter how I described that I disliked it because in the end you still would have taken it personally.

It. is. just. a. song.
posted by Malice at 12:30 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think the Malice thing is a bit of a derail, but it's got me thinking about my own work as a critic. We're always taught to leave out words like "in my opinion" or "I think" when writing criticism, and lately I've come to the conclusion that this is bad advice. We're taught to assume that people know it's just your opinion, but I have yet to see evidence of that. Instead, when you state an opinion without framing it as an opinion, many people will read it as an objective statement of fact.

Now, when I write, I try to be more careful in expressing my opinion, and allowing that other people will experience art differently than me, and have different opinions. And I try only to express opinions that I want to spend a paragraph or two justifying. I also use a lot of what are often called "weasel words," but I find them indispensable in discussing art, where you need to allow room for uncertainty, for the possibility that your opinion is not settled, and for the possibility that you're wrong.

The result is that, after a decade and a half of writing about art, I have developed a reputation as a fair critic, and even get thank you notes from people I pan. It's surprising how a subtle shift in language can shift perceptions, but it turns out people are a lot more willing to listen to "For my tastes, this is not her best song, and here is why" over "this song sucks."
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:31 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


My choice of words for describing that I don't like it (it sucks) is common language for someone saying they dislike something.

Yeah, which is why people commonly get pissed off by other people saying they dislike something. What I'm saying is that if you're careful, you can have a conversation wherein you mention your opinions without it being an irritant.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:32 PM on June 21, 2011


What I'm saying is that if you're careful, you can have a conversation wherein you mention your opinions without it being an irritant.

I suppose that's the core of this conversation, and I get what you're saying, but I'm not going to apologize for saying "Born this way" sucks. Whatever the reasons I believe it does, that is how I feel about it.

Shall we move on? Because I've already said why.
posted by Malice at 12:36 PM on June 21, 2011


schmod: " Maybe that's supposed to be a subtle subversion of the conspiracy theories that Lady GaGa is a dude or a hermaphrodite?"

Hadn't thought of that. That makes sense.

What is with that, anyway? It seems so childish.
posted by zarq at 12:37 PM on June 21, 2011


What is with that, anyway? It seems so childish.

Childish sells records.
posted by The World Famous at 12:39 PM on June 21, 2011


What is with that, anyway? It seems so childish.

I think that some people feel threatened by the fact that she doesn't seem to dress to cater to the "females should be sexy for males" stereotype and perhaps that is where the rumors come from.
posted by Malice at 12:40 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I think that some people feel threatened by the fact that she doesn't seem to dress to cater to the "females should be sexy for males" stereotype

Are we talking about the same Lady GaGa?
posted by The World Famous at 12:44 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Lady Gaga herself credits it to the fact that she presents herself in an androgynous way. I don't know that "androgynous" is the right word, but Malice is right -- even when she dresses in the sort of costume elements one would associate with a woman, such as high heels, she does not seem to be doing so for to please the male gaze, but instead using it for some fetishy purpose whose intended viewer is uncertain. Space aliens, maybe.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:45 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


she also seems to find it hilarious and plays it up. on jonathan ross he asked about the rumor and she responded "well i do have a really big donkey dick."
posted by nadawi at 12:45 PM on June 21, 2011


Are we talking about the same Lady GaGa?

Well, I see where you're going with that and some of the clothes she wears are sexy, but not in the "I am dressing this way to please men or women who think I should be dressing this way" - way. I really don't know how to describe it. A lot of males I know locally don't think she's 'sexy' in the way they might think, I don't know, Beyonce is sexy.
posted by Malice at 12:47 PM on June 21, 2011


Childish sells records.

We're not talking about Billy Childish, are we? As far as I can tell, he's sold a grand total of 70 records in his entire career.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:47 PM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


The mixing and mastering are more than a little clunky. As far as songwriting, it's far too derivative (and I'm being nice - the vocal melody of the chorus is directly lifted from the final pre-chorus of Express Yourself). The whole package is sort of a middling, lukewarm result. Danceable and catchy, but boring and overly-predictable. GaGa certainly got her money's worth when she hired the folks who wrote and produced it. And it's great played loud in a club, sure. But it's not a great song and the lyrics are really terrible in a whole list of ways, including that I cannot stand overtly-religious songs proclaiming the artist's theological viewpoints.

I've got to agree with you from a lyrical standpoint. Gaga's not brilliant with words. I'm not sure if that's a deliberate choice — "Let me be be oversimplistic and absurd!" — or if she's trying to be really clever and failing. Every time she talks in an interview, what comes out of her mouth is smarter and more lyrical than what goes into her lyrics, so part of me feels it's a part of her constructed personality, but then, her old pre-Gaga songs were like that too.

It's predictable in that it's an anthem. But the individual production decisions, I feel, were really clever and sometimes surprising. They do really neat things in between lines, or in the background. I felt that overall it was more layered than music off her first two albums; that she was able to take such a basic disco-y structure and create something that felt unique I felt was a real indication of her skill.

As for the "Express Yourself" thing: I was born a year after "Like A Prayer" was released, so I have no memory of Madonna whatsoever. (Except for "Ray of Light?" Was "Ray of Light" Madonna?) By the time I was old enough to pay attention to things like that, she was already ten years past her prime. But I listened to "Express Yourself" after the whole kerflutz, and I thought the similarities were so vague as to be nearly meaningless. They're two completely different melodies. It's not like that Kanye song where everything but the last three notes are taken directly from Iron Man.

I get what you're saying, but I'm not going to apologize for saying "Born this way" sucks.

And this is what makes people think you are an asshole when you open your mouth. It's not because you have an opinion, it's because you spout it without any regard for how your phrasing will make other people react.

You have every right to do that. But I feel that I have every right to make fun of you when you behave like that. And clearly you do care what other people think, because you got peeved at my original comment. You just don't care enough to behave with an ounce of empathy towards other people in a conversation.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:49 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


There's some curious quality to Gaga's music where at first I don't think I like a particular song ('Oh that isn't a good one,' I think) and then later I realize it's caught in my head and then later I realize that it's fantastic and I love it. So.

The more you are exposed to something and the more other people like something the more you like it (unless it's very good or very bad), and her stuff tends to be rather inescapable.

/pop psych
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:50 PM on June 21, 2011


Every time she talks in an interview, what comes out of her mouth is smarter and more lyrical than what goes into her lyrics, so part of me feels it's a part of her constructed personality, but then, her old pre-Gaga songs were like that too.

Meh. I'm a pretty articulate person and I write the worst lyrics ever. I actually like that Gaga's lyrics are terrible and stupid but successful. It gives me hope for myself.

But I listened to "Express Yourself" after the whole kerflutz, and I thought the similarities were so vague as to be nearly meaningless. They're two completely different melodies.

The vocal melody on the chorus of Born This Way is identical to the "so if you want it right now / make him show you how / express what he's got / oh baby ready or not" melody in Express Yourself.
posted by The World Famous at 12:54 PM on June 21, 2011


In terms of lyrics...feel-good pop lyrics aren't poetry. They mostly need to be vague enough to resonate with a lot of people in diverse situations and they need to sorta rhyme. The goal is to make people feel good and want to listen to the song and pesky things like thoughtfulness and detail just get in the way.

She does have a knack for getting the sounds right in her lyrics, meaning if you divorce them from the meaning of the words they sound "right". Bad Romance is a great example of this. Half the song is nonsense or French but it sounds so, so good.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:00 PM on June 21, 2011


I am still pretty convinced that there will never be a song as awesome as 'Bad Romance.'
posted by shakespeherian at 1:03 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]



And this is what makes people think you are an asshole when you open your mouth. It's not because you have an opinion, it's because you spout it without any regard for how your phrasing will make other people react.

You have every right to do that. But I feel that I have every right to make fun of you when you behave like that. And clearly you do care what other people think, because you got peeved at my original comment. You just don't care enough to behave with an ounce of empathy towards other people in a conversation.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:49 PM on June 21 [+] [!]


You're clearly overreacting by calling me an asshole for my choice of wording. I'll have to disagree with you on the getting peeved thing, what I got was surprised.

When your attempt to change my mind about what I said failed, you personally attacked me over saying "this song sucks", you realize that right? And you are calling me me an asshole?

Really though, I don't care anymore. You're coming off as a Christian might when an Atheist says something they don't like, and I don't think there's anything more constructive to be said here.


I am still pretty convinced that there will never be a song as awesome as 'Bad Romance.'
posted by shakespeherian at 1:03 PM on June 21 [+] [!]


I have actually listened to that one on repeat before. It's very well put together, my favorite of hers.
posted by Malice at 1:04 PM on June 21, 2011


I do like when people accuse Lady Gaga of stealing from Madonna, perhaps because I was around when Madonna first started to become popular and remember the rampant accusations of theft that were leveled at her.

If anything, Lady Gaga took Madonna's buisness model, and accelerated it for the 21st century.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:06 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


- one of those me's, I have a bad habit of having two words around a tag. *
posted by Malice at 1:06 PM on June 21, 2011


All said though, Weird Al strikes me as lacking edginess and being bland but entertaining. Still bought the album though.
posted by ZeusHumms at 1:10 PM on June 21, 2011


No one is an asshole. Everyone can always consider others more. I don't know who Plain White T's is. That is probably my fault.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:11 PM on June 21, 2011


I am still pretty convinced that there will never be a song as awesome as 'Bad Romance.'

That's a pretty bold statement, considering all of the other awesome songs that exist already.
posted by The World Famous at 1:11 PM on June 21, 2011


It's true, I know. I'm that kind of girl.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:12 PM on June 21, 2011


I don't know who Plain White T's is. That is probably my fault.

If you listen to the radio, you've probably heard them. They do that 1,2,3,4 song and "Hey There Delilah". I didn't know who they were really despite hearing those songs until they came to our local radio station and played live.
posted by Malice at 1:12 PM on June 21, 2011


I like that Sinatra and Marley albums currently outsell hers on iTunes.
posted by Mental Wimp at 1:14 PM on June 21, 2011


I have mixed feelings about Gaga, but:

1. Name-checking Queen for your performing name/personality is pretty great
2. "Bad Romance" is an eminent pop gem
3. She seems to make a lot of people really happy/giddy and that's a good thing in my book.

I like to think of the passing similarity between "Born this Way" and "Express Yourself" as indicative of a deliberate "musical quote" which is not as rare/obscure as it might sound. Basically Gaga is sonically recognizing those who've gone before (Madonna in this case) without openly stating it. And I love the synths on Born this Way. So crunchy, so cheezy, so goooood.

And finally, on thread: there's a dark, nerdy corner in my heart where the door is always open for Weird Al.
posted by jnrussell at 1:16 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Hey There Delilah is one of the funniest songs ever because of the sheer, unabashed ego that emanates from it. Yes, sure, you are going to New York City and "making history like you do". I am sure that impresses your high school girlfriend.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:18 PM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


If you listen to the radio, you've probably heard them. They do that 1,2,3,4 song and "Hey There Delilah". I didn't know who they were really despite hearing those songs until they came to our local radio station and played live.

I don't listen to the radio (I don't drive, and when I'm at home I'm usually playing a CD or something). I realize that the internet exists and I've now looked them up on Wikipedia and it turns out that they were an underground phenomenon in Chicago for a while which just makes me feel that much stupider but now maybe I'll look up some songs when I get home. Hurrah!
posted by shakespeherian at 1:18 PM on June 21, 2011


Malice: "They do that 1,2,3,4 song"

I thought that was Feist.
posted by zarq at 1:20 PM on June 21, 2011


Hey There Delilah is one of the funniest songs ever because of the sheer, unabashed ego that emanates from it. Yes, sure, you are going to New York City and "making history like you do". I am sure that impresses your high school girlfriend.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:18 PM on June 21 [+] [!]


Haha, actually I thought that as well about that song. I like the simplicity of the guitar and the vocals, but the lyrics are a little 'eh'.

shakespeherian, don't feel stupid! I really don't know many bands, I just know I like a song when I hear it and then I go look up the band on the internet, usually.

zarq, that song actually does sound a little like it!
posted by Malice at 1:23 PM on June 21, 2011


:)
posted by zarq at 1:27 PM on June 21, 2011


i don't know what this impostor song is, but the only delilah is this one (yes, it's a cover - but, come on, red russian army choir and the leningrad cowboys - that's just about as rad as it gets).
posted by nadawi at 1:39 PM on June 21, 2011


oh, and i love bad romance, but i'd take teeth, paparazzi, and speechless above it. my favorite song on the new album is probably americano, but only because it gives me hopes that lady gaga and gogol bordello will do a performance together.

on that note, here is (part of) gogol bordello and madonna. i honestly don't think i've seen her look like she's having so much fun in decades.
posted by nadawi at 1:43 PM on June 21, 2011


'Paparazzi' is clearly the best video.
posted by shakespeherian at 1:45 PM on June 21, 2011


Teeth is the best Lady Gaga song ever. EVER. It is sexy (and kinky) in a really smart way. It's what "I'm A Slave 4 U" would be like if it were actually written by a woman who is in charge of her own sexuality. The vocals are amazingly well done. If I didn't associate it so strongly with my ex I would listen to it every day while putting on way too much eyeliner, along with "Wig In A Box" from Hedwig and the Angry Inch.
posted by the young rope-rider at 1:51 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


the young rope-rider - have you see this great fan made video? like if gaga never got the funding.

teeth is absolutely my favorite.
posted by nadawi at 2:04 PM on June 21, 2011


Rory, the Madonna-Gaga comparison in general, as I see it, is that Madonna pioneered the style of tame pop music plus shocking persona. That's my take on why they will forever be compared, justifiably.
posted by ejoey at 2:11 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


For pasting the artist head on a woman's body, you can't beat window licker.
posted by poe at 2:20 PM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Algafilter

Gaal filter.
posted by zippy at 3:12 PM on June 21, 2011


I'm getting old. Polkaface is the first Al Polka medley where I only recognised two of the songs.

No way man. We're gonna keep rockin' forever. Forever. Forever...
posted by Effigy2000 at 3:40 PM on June 21, 2011


I love Weird Al's live shows. There were a lot of sad nerdy people of all ages disappointed that he canceled an appearance at our fair.
posted by Katjusa Roquette at 5:13 PM on June 21, 2011


God, Weird Al makes for an ugly woman.

But he's still awesome.
posted by bwg at 6:18 PM on June 21, 2011


you two beat me to it but MAN does he ever throw off massive waves of Jane Krakowski throughout that video
posted by tehloki at 6:26 PM on June 21, 2011


I know this is supposed to be a parody of a Lady Gaga song, but why do parts of it sound like Madonna's "Express Yourself"?
posted by hal_c_on at 6:37 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have to remember not to read a thread about something I love before I see the actual thing.. all yr bitching about the CGI caused the smell of poo to linger in my brain when I tried to finally enjoy it. Just sayin'.
posted by herbplarfegan at 8:25 PM on June 21, 2011


I would like to retract that comment.. it's a fuckin' forum; that's why I love it. 'night
posted by herbplarfegan at 8:31 PM on June 21, 2011


I need that giant unicorn hat immediately.

I would wear it to interviews and get the job with no questions asked. Who could deny someone with that hat anything they desired?
posted by winna at 9:13 PM on June 21, 2011


I'm kind of meh on this cover. I think that generally I prefer Weird Al covers where the lyrics don't have anything to do with the original artist/song.

Also, I thought it was a pretty interesting coincidence that Gaga got called out for using the word "retarded" while being interviewed about this particular song. I don't really follow celebrity news though so someone's probably already said how "ironic" it all is.
posted by ODiV at 11:39 AM on June 22, 2011


Er, parody, not cover.
posted by ODiV at 12:25 PM on June 22, 2011


« Older Martin Liebscher's series Family Pictures feature ...  |  Now, in 2011, in his endless m... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments