Let’s try to hate this thing right, shall we?
April 1, 2010 3:05 PM   Subscribe

The Semiotics of TiK ToK. An in-depth analysis of what makes Ke$ha's hit song work, stopping by Beyonce, Barthes, and the Beastie Boys on the way.

Surprisingly, author Martin Seay doesn't cover her source material: Uffie and Robyn, two slightly more substantial progenitors.
posted by Potomac Avenue (148 comments total) 26 users marked this as a favorite

 
I absolutely adore this song.

And you are totally right about Robyn and Uffie.

Her rap style is very much a throw back to 80s rap -- Run DMC and Beastie Boys.

The music is a combination of like 80s Prince, 2000s electro and late 90s pop trance.

It's just a flawless party song.
posted by empath at 3:09 PM on April 1, 2010


It's just a flawless party song.

Except for that line about Mick Jagger. Sometimes I wish songs were sung in other languages so I didn't have to listen to the lyrics.
posted by LSK at 3:12 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


What? No Benjamin? No Bataille? No PlatoBeans?
posted by felix betachat at 3:13 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


Holy crap this article has a lot of words which I am not going to read. I think this person needs to stop listening to music.
posted by empath at 3:14 PM on April 1, 2010 [18 favorites]


It's just a flawless party song.
posted by empath at 3:09 PM on April 1 [+] [!]


Are you, by chance, a professional Jr. High chaperone?
posted by basicchannel at 3:15 PM on April 1, 2010 [10 favorites]


I honestly can't tell the difference, in regards to the song or the video, between this and Shoes.
posted by Astro Zombie at 3:15 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


No kidding empath. I think people who analyze music to this degree have a fundamental misunderstanding of it. Thankfully we have the profession of music journalist to serve to group them together and make them easily identifiable so we can ignore them.
posted by DecemberBoy at 3:16 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


I heard the singer's voice in the intro and thought it was a new project from Tigra, or possibly Bunny... altho the standards have definitely sunk, musically.
posted by FatherDagon at 3:17 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


I kept thinking, "Please please let someone have written this song about a murderous robot." No dice.
posted by adipocere at 3:18 PM on April 1, 2010 [6 favorites]


I typically do not like pop songs but really really dig that one. It seems to be crafted to within an inch of its life (that Jagger line notwithstanding).

I wish the author didn't take over 8,000 words to make their point because I tried to read, then tried to skim, and finally discovered I was in tl:dr territory before giving up. I wish there was a more concise version or a synopsis (or a Harvard Outline even).
posted by yeti at 3:19 PM on April 1, 2010


Are you, by chance, a professional Jr. High chaperone?

Worse, I'm a trance dj.
posted by empath at 3:19 PM on April 1, 2010 [14 favorites]


It's just a flawless party song.

No. It's not. You are wrong.
posted by hellojed at 3:20 PM on April 1, 2010 [5 favorites]


The music is a combination of like 80s Prince, 2000s electro and late 90s pop trance.

Really? It just sounds exactly like every other top 40 pop song in the last 3-4 years to me - heavy autotune, distorted filter-y portamento-y synths, a hip hop-derivative beat, etc. It's completely cookie cutter. Apparently because this Gottleib fellow mentioned in the article, who I hadn't heard of, is the single entity actually writing most of this crap. Kinda like a modern Stock Aitken and Waterman, whose shit also all sounded the same.
posted by DecemberBoy at 3:20 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


"It commits some greater perfidy of which “My Humps” is innocent."

If you're going to criticize wildly popular culture, and hope to be productive, try not to write like Martin Luther. Your aims are good, but when I read this I actually imagine your corduroy and flared nostrils.
posted by voronoi at 3:21 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


Metafilter: Holy crap this article has a lot of words which I am not going to read.
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 3:21 PM on April 1, 2010 [12 favorites]


lol, lmao, let me just read the shit out of these 10,000 words about a pop song that came out last summer APRIL FOOLS I am not going to do that
posted by Damn That Television at 3:21 PM on April 1, 2010 [30 favorites]


It's not a hip-hop beat at all. Tempo is too fast just to start. Secondly, it's 4 to the floor, not a breakbeat.
posted by empath at 3:22 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Yeah, the "young fogey" shtick gets old pretty quick. Too much preciousness.
posted by kcds at 3:24 PM on April 1, 2010


It's not a hip-hop beat at all.

Dude, go into any strip club and listen to the bad-pop rap playing there. They all have that beat. It originates from snap music, a subgenre of southern rap, but everything uses it now.
posted by DecemberBoy at 3:25 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


DiG DuG
posted by Faint of Butt at 3:25 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


rap <> hip hop.
posted by empath at 3:27 PM on April 1, 2010


Worse, I'm a trance dj.
posted by empath at 3:19 PM on April 1


QED.
posted by basicchannel at 3:27 PM on April 1, 2010


(By which I mean my internal hypothesis that I have not and WILL NOT share with you all, has thus been demonstrated.)
posted by basicchannel at 3:29 PM on April 1, 2010


I think everybody approaches new music from the references they're familiar with. We're obviously coming to it from different scenes. I'm hearing the dance music influences mostly.
posted by empath at 3:31 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


Y'ALL ARE JUST JEALOUS WHY YOU GOTTA HATE
posted by infinitywaltz at 3:31 PM on April 1, 2010


I found this analysis of the song enlightening.
posted by knave at 3:34 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


YAY KE$HA!

This article is interesting to me even behind the work firewall. (Hafta read it when I get home tonight.) I'm a total fanboy for Ke$ha, for a few reasons.
posted by carsonb at 3:35 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm sorry, let me quantify that statement. I think you're wrong, because if this song came on at a party I would leave. This song does not make me want to dance. At all. A good "party song" should not just persuade me to dance but command me. Such that if I'm sitting at home and the "perfect party song" comes on, I need to stop what I am doing and dance.

I think it's important that the "perfect party song" have such a quality. Part of a party is to relax and let go of inhibition. Part of letting go means dancing to music, in public, like a fool. Part of this equation is alcohol, yes, but the other half is the music.

Kesha's tick tock does not make me want to dance. It makes me wonder how someone my age could make so much money with such little intrinsic talent. Does she sing good? Did she actually write these lyrics? How closely is she involved in the production? If I knew I would probably have a different opinion. Lady Gaga may be kooky, but she has a very good voice that I enjoy listening to.

I think a "perfect party song" should be able to lift the spirits of someone who is having a bad day, and make them not write several paragraphs on why they don't like "the perfect party song." It should make them lose enough inhibition to dance a little bit, and have a hook that isn't earworm material. Tik Tok, for me, has none of these qualities.
posted by hellojed at 3:36 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


Except for that line about Mick Jagger. Sometimes I wish songs were sung in other languages so I didn't have to listen to the lyrics.

Oh, I think this so very often. There are even singers I admire who have terrible lines which make me cringe every time I hear them. Perhaps that's why I sing made-up lyrics instead of learning the real ones so often.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:38 PM on April 1, 2010


Lady Gaga may be kooky mankind's only hope for the future

I TOTALLY AGREE WITH THIS
posted by infinitywaltz at 3:41 PM on April 1, 2010 [12 favorites]


I read the article before having listened to either Tik Tok or Single Ladies. Then, I listened to both songs.

Why didn't the producers get headline credit on those songs?
posted by Fraxas at 3:44 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


The song sucks.

And that's really all that needs to be said.
posted by delmoi at 3:47 PM on April 1, 2010 [4 favorites]


Why didn't the producers get headline credit on those songs?

If a song is marketed to DJs primarily, the producer almost always gets top credit. If you're marketing to radio or retail, the singer will usually get top credit. That's because radio and retail music is still largely sold around personalities, and DJs generally focus on production quality and the music. Hip-hop is kind of a mix of the two because they managed to turn producers into personalities and rappers.
posted by empath at 3:51 PM on April 1, 2010 [5 favorites]


I think everybody approaches new music from the references they're familiar with. We're obviously coming to it from different scenes. I'm hearing the dance music influences mostly.
posted by empath at 3:31 PM on April 1


Oh?!?!
posted by basicchannel at 3:54 PM on April 1, 2010 [4 favorites]


I love this song. I tried to listen to Uffie's song to see how similar it was, but I couldn't stand Uffie.

The guy who wrote that article thinks way too much. It's a fun song, fun to dance to, and dancing is way more fun than navelgazing and deconstructing some pop song produced by a guy who calls himself Dr. Luke. I love the music video. Her waking up in the bathtub of some random family's house just cracks me up.
posted by anniecat at 3:56 PM on April 1, 2010


Seriously, who gives a damn? It's music. You like it or you don't. If you don't, you're obviously not the intended audience. One song is not the End Of Music and Civilization As We Know It.

The author should just CTCAMO. (Change The Channel And Move On) Life is too damned short to worry about crap like this.
posted by zarq at 3:56 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


I got to the part about Beyonce and thought, wow, there's still a lot of this left, isn't there? And then I started scrolling and scrolling and scrolling. It never ends. (What I read was kind of interesting.)

"Tik Tok" is catchy but I'd be happy to never hear it again. I doubt I'll be that lucky.
posted by darksong at 3:57 PM on April 1, 2010


Oh?!?!

Your favorite band sucks.
posted by empath at 3:58 PM on April 1, 2010


Don't be a prickly pear.
posted by basicchannel at 4:00 PM on April 1, 2010


The guy who wrote that article thinks way too much.

It's a pretty interesting article, actually, but unsurprisingly the least substantial parts are about Ke$ha. Because really, what the hell are you gonna say about her?
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:00 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


It makes me wonder how someone my age could make so much money with such little intrinsic talent. Does she sing good?

She sings very well.

Did she actually write these lyrics?


Maybe. Who cares? How good a song sounds doesn't necessarily have to do with whether or not she wrote the lyrics. Actors don't write their own lines most of the time. Why should a singer? Though her mother is Pebe Sebert, who is a professional songwriter based in Nashville.

How closely is she involved in the production?

Again, who cares? I see the point that you don't think she's a great musician, but we're talking about the song. If you don't like it, you don't like it. I'm still going to be having fun on the dancefloor.
posted by anniecat at 4:02 PM on April 1, 2010


Yea, I'm sorry. This song is not the perfect party song at all, and I like a lot of what would be deemed "shitty" party songs on metafilter. I actually don't hate this song. And I've totally bopped along to it and in fact, I really like the beat, riff and production of it, yet something is just...meh about it. If I heard it as an instrumental at a party I might be out there dancing the most enthusiastically to it, but some addition of Ke$ha to the mix ruins it.

I mean, seriously, compare this to 'Cars That Go Boom', where Bunny and Tigra basically have a pretty similar delivery, yet this song is 10 times more fun to me than Tik Tok does. I really can't describe what it is. I think the closest to benig able to demonstrate this feeling of desolation that Ke$ha contributes to the song can't really be put into words ("utter party suck" is the closest I can get to it) is through watching a performance of Tik Tok live. The sort of contrived LA during the 80s, Viper Room meets gutter punk stage crew that are obviously there to distract from Ke$ha's inability to not only sing the only sung "hook" of the song (seriously, did anyone know this song was supposed to be a duet? A song performed by a band? Why the fuck are all these people on stage except to be hype persons?) but also total lack of stage presence visible in the really sad "Uncle Ron doing the robot at your Bar Mitzvah" brokeass chereography screams out to you: THIS CHICK SERIOUSLY DON'T KNOW DA FIRST THING ABOUT PARTYING ALL NIGHT AND BRUSHING YOUR TEETH WITH JACK.

Which is fine, I can appreciate a little performance/persona in my music, but Ke$ha seriously fails at selling it. It's like when I first went to college and all these middle-class overachievers who were president of their school chess clubs and whatnot went to parties and got drunk in their L.L. Bean gear (including monogrammed bookbag in the corner) and tried to play it off like they did this shit all the time back home. Please.
posted by kkokkodalk at 4:03 PM on April 1, 2010 [4 favorites]


This song isn't so bad, for what it is.
posted by contessa at 4:03 PM on April 1, 2010


I saw ke$ha at a 20-30 person house party/show that I was playing at... she does drive a gold trans am... and her friend in the blah blah blah vid was with her. I didn't know it was her... she looked under age. She didn't stick around to see us, she was there to see Joe Jack Talcum of the dead milkmen. Seriously.

At any rate, I made an acoustic mashup of one of my songs and tik tok after that event.

Just played it live the other day and it was well received.

Yup, just came here to write that self-plug.

In closing Dr. Luke is a genius and here is a 13 year old ke$ha singing radiohead at a school talent show.
posted by nutate at 4:04 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


"TiK ToK" depends for its success on its capacity to polarize, and to polarize instantaneously... Ergo, if I hate "TiK ToK," "TiK ToK" wins. On the other hand, if I DON'T hate "TiK ToK," "TiK ToK" STILL wins.
I'm ambivalent. Ergo, "TiK ToK" loses. Hard.
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 4:05 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


I hope there's a series of blogs and a Metafilter thread in a few months analyzing all of the reasons why my new dance single either sucks or is the perfect party song.

Of course, I would then have to get a new MeFi account, since my current handle would seem too literal. But that's a sacrifice I'm willing to make in exchange for worldwide fame and fortune.
posted by The World Famous at 4:05 PM on April 1, 2010


Metafilter: when I read this I actually imagine your corduroy and flared nostrils.
posted by Astro Zombie at 4:08 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


Uncle Ron doing the robot at your Bar Mitzvah

This should be the measure of a good dance party song. If it makes your Uncle Ron get up and do the robot at your Bar Mitzvah, then it's fun times for everybody.
posted by anniecat at 4:09 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


I like the "po-po" part. It reminds me of The Wire.
posted by smackfu at 4:09 PM on April 1, 2010


You guys just justified me having that song and a handful of her other songs on my computer.

I heard her a few weeks ago on NPR of all places, and I wanted to hate it, I really did….but damn it was catchy
posted by ShawnString at 4:11 PM on April 1, 2010


Also as a side note "Hangover" and "Your Love is My Drug" from Animal are two of the best drug/alcohol love metaphor songs ever.
posted by nutate at 4:13 PM on April 1, 2010


I mean, seriously, compare this to 'Cars That Go Boom', where Bunny and Tigra basically have a pretty similar delivery, yet this song is 10 times more fun to me than Tik Tok does.

I actually like Tigra (I put them on a mix a while ago -- Hot Mess), but this is even more derivative than Tik-Tok is, and it sounds horribly dated. It's really not easy to make a song like this and make it work.

Also, it really bugs me when people can't just judge a song just based on the song. I don't know anything about the singer and don't really care to know anything about her, and I've never paid attention to the lyrics.
posted by empath at 4:15 PM on April 1, 2010


I just listened to that "Cars That Go Boom" (I thought it was truly terrible) and it made me feel embarrassed that I was alive in the 80s. Those girls look twelve. They look like the kids on Saved by the Bell.
posted by anniecat at 4:17 PM on April 1, 2010


Lady Tigra still raps... her song First Black First Lady is the bomb.
posted by nutate at 4:21 PM on April 1, 2010


Also, it really bugs me when people can't just judge a song just based on the song. I don't know anything about the singer and don't really care to know anything about her, and I've never paid attention to the lyrics.

The...lyrics are generally considered to be part of the song.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:21 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


The...lyrics are generally considered to be part of the song.

Yeah, that was more there for emphasis about how little I care about her personally. 90% of my enjoyment of the song is the music and the general flow of the her delivery. I could care less what she's actually saying.
posted by empath at 4:27 PM on April 1, 2010


"TiK ToK” depends for its success on its capacity to polarize, and to polarize instantaneously: I would pretty much bet money that anybody who derives pleasure from this song is going to derive at least part of that pleasure by imagining somebody like me recoiling from it."

This author misses the point in a huge way. The fans of TiK ToK don't give a shit what blogger Martin Sea thinks about the song. People who listen to catchy pop songs listen to them because they like catchy pop songs, and don't care what other people think. People who care one way or the other what blogger Martin Sea thinks about music probably aren't the target audience for catchy pop songs.

It's like saying people who love KFC love it even more because a foodie blogger hates KFC. No, they just like KFC.
posted by kcalder at 4:51 PM on April 1, 2010


posted by infinitywaltz Lady Gaga may be mankind's only hope for the future

So humanity will be saved with Gaga Warming.
posted by mattdidthat at 4:52 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


All I know if that she was any more auto-tuned she'd have perfect pitch. As in, her voice would be a 10 kHz test tone.
posted by GuyZero at 4:54 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


I really liked this essay. It hits you like a wave; I mean, it's just so over-the-top, so ridiculous and meandering at times that you just have to succumb. Even though there were numerous times I disagreed with a fact, or thought, bewilderedly, "Cite?!", the author's earnest fascination with making connections and general non-ironic excitement for reconciling the absurd made the piece a joy to read. Yeah, it's wankery, but thrilling wankery with a good heart. Like the conlanging of the music criticism world.
posted by threeants at 4:55 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Ha Ha! April fools! Right? Right? You mean he was serious? Christ What an Asshole.
posted by Megafly at 4:56 PM on April 1, 2010


Consider me on the loving it pole. Oh, wait.
posted by iamkimiam at 4:57 PM on April 1, 2010


I think people who analyze music to this degree have a fundamental misunderstanding of it.

Yeah, man, people who try to understand things deeply are STUPID!!
posted by LooseFilter at 5:02 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Sometimes I wish songs were sung in other languages so I didn't have to listen to the lyrics.

This is why I love Japanese pop. May I suggest a bit of Koda Kumi?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 5:10 PM on April 1, 2010


I can't say I'm normally a fan of Ke$ha, but Chicagoist offered a free 'retro' remix of the song that I really dig.
posted by WCityMike at 5:13 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Also: amazing that this article on the semiotics of Tik Tok dances ALLLL around intertextuality and dialogicality, but never once mentions either of them. Still, fascinating read.
posted by iamkimiam at 5:15 PM on April 1, 2010


Sometimes I wish songs were sung in other languages so I didn't have to listen to the lyrics.

Another good one is Carla Bruni. Incomprehensible sexy French from first lady of France!
posted by smackfu at 5:15 PM on April 1, 2010


"Sometimes I wish songs were sung in other languages so I didn't have to listen to the lyrics."

But then sometimes it's so awesome, you just have to know. What. Is. This. About??? (Original vocals here.)
posted by iamkimiam at 5:20 PM on April 1, 2010


while i seriously appreciate someone who sings live in this day and age, ke$ha seriously can't sing. maybe if she did some aerobics training so she could maintain air support while she danced it'd be better...maybe. also this: obviously there to distract from Ke$ha's inability to not only sing the only sung "hook" of the song [...] but also total lack of stage presence - so utterly true.

finally, anytime i hear something about ke$ha, i think about noah cyrus.
posted by nadawi at 5:20 PM on April 1, 2010


rap <> hip hop.

Um, no. Rap is a subset of hip hop. The classical definition of hip hop is a culture encompassing the "pillars" of graffiti, b-boying (breakdancing), emceeing and DJing. Rap music is the emceeing and DJing part.
posted by DecemberBoy at 5:21 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


In other words the terms are essentially interchangeable when used to refer to the musical genre.
posted by DecemberBoy at 5:22 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


"TiK ToK” depends for its success on its capacity to polarize, and to polarize instantaneously: I would pretty much bet money that anybody who derives pleasure from this song is going to derive at least part of that pleasure by imagining somebody like me recoiling from it."

This author misses the point in a huge way. The fans of TiK ToK don't give a shit what blogger Martin Sea thinks about the song.


I don't think he misses the point here. This is about the time where he starts talking about TiK ToK's predecessors, especially the Beastie Boys, and how 'Fight For Your Right' was co-opted as anthemic by the segment of the audience the work was supposedly satirising. There's a lot of post-adolescent joy to being part of the contemporary scene in ways in which your parents can't be, and regardless of whether this particular song is explicitly anti-oldster, the fact that the subject matter of the lyrics could conceivably cause eye-rolling and 'kids these days' sentiments is definitely a selling point. But he's not resting his conclusions on this, this is just a small part of his analysis.

I finally finished the article (the dude is nothing if not verbose) and I think there's a lot to be gleaned from the points the article makes. If you don't find semiotics interesting, you're probably not going to like it, but I thought he made some revealing comparisons and fascinating associations, while digging through some musical history to try and pin down exactly why he despised the song so much.

For the tl;dr crowd this is the upshot I took away from the article wrt why he thought it evil:

a) The song has absolutely no ambiguity, no symbolism and no reach beyond its own attempt to be love-it-or-hate-it polarising - it is both upfront and flat, and it really tells us nothing

b) The world it does describe is explictly depowering and grotesque - but at the same time, it is not realistic - it's a fantasy of realism of a kind that often shuts down real critique or improvement

c) The song is implicitly conservative, in that it hopes for nothing more than its depressing, oft-times ugly status quo, and celebrates its own sense of lack with not just a 'that's alright' mindset, but a 'that's the way it always is' one - there is no sense of possibility, escape or change from the bleak, impoverished 'party' world it describes.

Obviously this is just a cut-down, potentially inaccurate summation, but I would recommend taking the time to actually read the article - I think it's a nice combo of erudite obvservations and approachable language and ultimately quite well thought out.
posted by Sparx at 5:25 PM on April 1, 2010 [13 favorites]


And then he said she was just like professional wrestling and I was all "yeah, now I get it."
posted by swift at 5:25 PM on April 1, 2010


So after reading that whole beautiful rant about "TiK ToK"*, I listened to it.

I'm pretty detached from mass media, so this was the first time I ever heard it. And it wasn't anywhere near as terrible and annoying as I was expecting it to be. The only part about it that really bugged me was the fact that the opening sounded like it was being sung over a chiptune, which always gives the inner 12-year-old grooving to the C64 tunes coming out of the little TV in her room pause - I always feel like my culture is being appropriated when someone presenting themselves as Cool sticks chippy sounds in their music.

It was just another piece of disposable pop to me. Pretty competently constructed by people who have clearly grokked The Manual in its fullness, with the obvious flaws in the vocal performance shamelessly hidden by auto-tune. It didn't make my ass want to move but then again I was hearing it through shitty laptop speakers, and my ass only hears bass

Anyone who can invoke Barthes in a lengthy critique of a disposable-by-design pop song is, however, my hero.

*which some part of me was really, really hoping would have something to do with the mechanical man from the Oz books
posted by egypturnash at 5:26 PM on April 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


The song is implicitly conservative, in that it hopes for nothing more than its depressing, oft-times ugly status quo, and celebrates its own sense of lack with not just a 'that's alright' mindset, but a 'that's the way it always is' one - there is no sense of possibility, escape or change from the bleak, impoverished 'party' world it describes.

I've been trying to figure out why I like this song, and specifically its spirit. I think this is the perfect description of that spirit. It is the same spirit in another pop hit, robot unicorn attack. A featureless, desolate world and no hope of escape or achievement. With rainbows.

That's how it comes across to me at least.
posted by Bobicus at 5:46 PM on April 1, 2010


I also thought this was going to be a Wizard of Oz post.

I'm so old.
posted by benzenedream at 5:50 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


I already hate this song because it will likely be top 40 and therefore will be played in my office via radio (not mine) at least twice an hour every day I am at work for the next 3 months.

I need to work on a radio jammer for my office. We have the worst radio stations here. I swear it's 1 CD on repeat all day long. Briefly interrupted with a commercial break or 2.
posted by Nauip at 6:00 PM on April 1, 2010


Can anybody explain what is meant by brushing one's teeth with a bottle of Jack? All the tweens on Yahoo Answers (which you'd think would be the place to ask this one!) apparently just need to be told that she's talking about Jack Daniels. I want to know why you would do that.



also, i think her speaking/rapping voice is one of the worst, most grating things ever, and the reason why i never listen to more than about fourteen seconds of that song. not that i think any of you does or should care about that, but this is the INTERNET, and i have OPINIONS
posted by emumimic at 6:02 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


brushing one's teeth with a bottle of Jack = starting the morning by drinking alcohol
posted by Sparx at 6:10 PM on April 1, 2010


brushing your teeth with jack is swishing jack like scope. it's just another line to make her look like a drunk.
posted by nadawi at 6:11 PM on April 1, 2010


I actually like Tigra (I put them on a mix a while ago -- Hot Mess), but this is even more derivative than Tik-Tok is, and it sounds horribly dated. It's really not easy to make a song like this and make it work.

Also, it really bugs me when people can't just judge a song just based on the song. I don't know anything about the singer and don't really care to know anything about her, and I've never paid attention to the lyrics.


Uummmm...If you thought my point in linking to "Cars that Go Boom" is because I hold it up some kind of deep anthem or as a golden example, I don't know where you're getting that from. I never said it wasn't derivative or whatever you're implying, my point in linking to "Cars that Go Boom" is only as a point of comparison of something that's in the similar vein/spirit/delivery style as "Tik Tok" in my whole overarching statement about that little something that I can't pinpoint about what keeps me from saying Tik Tok is the greatest party song ever. Not that the song sucks mind you, but politely disagreeing with it getting the crown and sash for parties everywhere.

As for your second statement, I can't tell if that's in response to me or just musing in general, but if it's the former, I seriously think you're over reading and getting het up over what was basically a comment that was meandering about my own personal thought process towards figuring out what was that one nagging element to a song that in theory I don't dislike all that much. In trying to figure out what I didn't like about the song I crossed out the music itself, the lyrics (it's just a song about partying, whatever), and it's not even the delivery because (as stated above) it's a delivery I'd heard before and it didn't necessarily bother me because it's music. Affectations happen with performance. That's not my beef with the song. The point was that Ke$ha just sucks as a performer. Look even if she does party every night, girl can't sell it. I don't care what she really does or doesn't but I think that there's a weak spot in this song to me which is her shortcomings as a performer. That's it.
posted by kkokkodalk at 6:16 PM on April 1, 2010


I would like to say, since I didn't express this before, that I think this music is horribly soulless and generally awful; as bitter-girl would have it (in reference to something else, but it fits), it sounds like someone autotuned cats fucking. I say this as someone who actually really likes Uffie, too. I have no hate-on for pop music. But this really does sound like shit to me, I'm sorry.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 6:16 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Dear people who are upset that he bothered to write this:

Some people like listening to Ke$ha. Others would prefer to write a few thousand words about her. Don't you think it's a bit silly to come here and write, "his time would be better spent elsewhere, not hating on things he doesn't like"?
posted by nosila at 6:19 PM on April 1, 2010


Every time somebody goes way longer than I ever would, I feel a sense of relief about my nerd tendencies. It's like when you think about a time you accidentally held somebody prisoner at a party because you were pointlessly rambling on about something that they may or may not have cared about...and then somebody does it to you...you kind of hate them and you kind of love them for it.
posted by iamkimiam at 6:22 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


All I can say is, the first time I heard the song, I thought it sounded exactly like the snotty girl from the kids show "The Mighty B!" and now I can't hear it any other way.
posted by mothershock at 6:29 PM on April 1, 2010


Yeah I thought I was hearing Uffie when I first heard the beginning of Tik Tok. I was just listening to a mashup of them both and I can't tell which is which. Uffie is sort of a weird artist to emulate, her first album doesn't even come out till next month.

And I'll add another song Tik Tok reminds me of, especially the synth bass... Kylie Minogue - Love At First Sight . The stupid song has more homages than a Tarantino film.
posted by bobo123 at 6:34 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


This song reminds me of "The Globe" by Big Audio Dyanmite 2 more than anything else.
posted by Megafly at 6:34 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Every time somebody goes way longer than I ever would, I feel a sense of relief about my nerd tendencies.

Like how I feel better after watching Hoarders.
posted by smackfu at 6:38 PM on April 1, 2010


Tribute to Roseanne Husband Guy
posted by Stylus Happenstance at 6:40 PM on April 1, 2010


Um, no. Rap is a subset of hip hop. The classical definition of hip hop is a culture encompassing the "pillars" of graffiti, b-boying (breakdancing), emceeing and DJing. Rap music is the emceeing and DJing part.

I don't think its possible to argue that she has anything to do with what's been traditionally labelled as hip-hop culture, and aside from that, that definition of hip-hop (graffiti, b-boying, mcing and Djing) hasn't really had much to do with mainstream hip-hop since Public Enemy.

Um, no. Rap is a subset of hip hop. The classical definition of hip hop is a culture encompassing the "pillars" of graffiti, b-boying (breakdancing), emceeing and DJing. Rap music is the emceeing and DJing part.

They're really, really not, and the proof is easy. If that track didn't have a vocal, it would be labeled as electrohouse, house, or probably most likely 'indie dance' by any record store or DJ. In fact, I don't think it's labeled as hip-hop pretty much anywhere.

By your definition, the concept of a 'hip-hop beat' would be so broad as to be nonsensical -- anything that anyone has rapped over, ever, which would encompass pretty much all of dance music at one time or another.
posted by empath at 6:43 PM on April 1, 2010


OK, I see your point. Let's say it's a snap music influenced beat, then?
posted by DecemberBoy at 6:44 PM on April 1, 2010


Kylie Minogue - Love At First Sight .

Huh, I'd never heard the original before, but the Scumfrog remix is one of my favorite house records of all time.
posted by empath at 6:50 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


The best part of the article was when the author showed very clearly how Ke$ha = Palin 2012.
posted by infinitewindow at 6:51 PM on April 1, 2010


I think the dude covers all this in the linked-to article, but here's what I found notable in my car when listening to Tik Tok:

1. This sounds like electro! Just like Lady Gaga's first single. This is the kind of techno sound I love - Sebastian, the end of LCD Soundsystem's Yeah, the end of Blur's Brothers and Sisters. Much of JUSTICE. MSTRKRFT. Great stuff. Electro is the sound of lightsabers making angry love! So glad pop music is embracing it.

2. She does the cutesy-awkward rap thing. Just like My Humps, or Fergie's part in Ima be, or pretty much anything else Fergie Ferg's in. I don't know if it's possible to not either love or hate this kind of stuff.

That's all I know. I have noticed that American pop sounds more and more like European pop (what I remember from 2006). I hope producers continue to make adventurous choices and avoid the mainstream synth-wall awfulness.
posted by boghead at 6:54 PM on April 1, 2010


This is 'snap music'?

I don't hear the connection at all. Like I said before, the tempo of this is a lot slower than tik-tok -- around 70 bpm, maybe less. It's also got complicated breakbeats, it's more influenced by Timbaland and Missy Eliot than anything else.

Ke$ha is four to the floor and somewhere around 125 bpm, maybe higher. Her stuff is right in line with, as Pete said in the opp Uffie and Robyn, or indie dance coming out of Paris and New York. I wouldn't think anybody would listen to her and think of Soulja boy before they think of Ed Banger records.
posted by empath at 6:59 PM on April 1, 2010


If you're like me and find this song catchy but can't stand the lyrics, her voice, or her stagename (apparently the dollar sign is silent), you can grab the instrumental version here.
posted by cgomez at 7:00 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yeah, boghead just nailed the influences I was thinking of on the nose.
posted by empath at 7:01 PM on April 1, 2010


I bow to the beanplate. I did not know the name of the song, and except for the post title, it was nearly 1000 words in before the opening lines appeared to communicate to me that yes, this was about that song.

Which led me to, you know, stop reading.
posted by mwhybark at 7:16 PM on April 1, 2010


emumimic: "Can anybody explain what is meant by brushing one's teeth with a bottle of Jack?"

You, like, take a swig of Jack and, like, swish it around in your mouth, on the theory that, like Listerine, a high-alcohol content liquid in the mouth has disinfectant and antibacteriological properties.

o dear god

posted by mwhybark at 7:21 PM on April 1, 2010


I like this song. I've liked it pretty much since the first time I heard it.

Other people dislike this song. That is okay. I'm sure they like lots of songs that I dislike.

Fortunately, there are so many songs in the world that everyone can find bunches to like. Inevitably, this means that there will be many songs that they dislike.

There are lots of things that I dislike (rhubarb; anchovies; the local evening news). But that doesn't mean I think it's wrong if other people like them. That is what is meant by this thing we call "individual preference."

Why some people are uncomfortable with this situation, and insist on Taking A Stand and arguing one way or the other, is utterly baffling to me.
posted by ErikaB at 8:36 PM on April 1, 2010


just for completeness, contra the link, the Uffie song this sounds like is the quintessential "Ready to Uff"...

also, the tl;dr summary is:

Tik Tok sucks because Ke$sha is from Nashville and Nashville, pro wrestling, and G W Bush are the same thing... which I basically agree with.
posted by ennui.bz at 8:46 PM on April 1, 2010


I feel so vindicated by this article's existence, because the first time I heard this song I was astounded, "It's like a computer has scientifically combined every single element of current pop music that I hate into one perfect package."

And now I can't stop listening to it, transfixed like a deer in the headlights at the perfection of it's awfulness - the swagger/Jagger lyric, the nonverbal "OW OW OW OW" in the chorus, the cheesy pleased-with-herself giggle when she sings "bottle of Jack," the way the music stops so she can announce that the party doesn't start until she walks in, the use of the just-a-few-months-too-late-to-be-cool "I'ma[verb]" construction when she says "I'ma fight."

And with horror I begin to suspect that there is no meaningful difference between the way I'm listening to it and just plain liking the song.
posted by straight at 9:10 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


The thing that baffles me about this song is the guy at the beginning saying, "Hey, what up, girl?, whatch you doin'?" or something along those lines. Is he a collaborator, her mixer, her producer, what?? I suppose it might be subtext; he's trying to arrange a hook-up, but she's too busy what with her jack teeth-brushing and avoiding the po-po, but I'm just fucking confused. This song really is a hangover come to life.
posted by Partario at 9:23 PM on April 1, 2010


I hate the "overthinking a plate of beans" thing. I LIKED Metafilter's collective ability to overthink a plate of beans. Whether you agree or disagree with the article, or whether you don't feel like reading that many words about a stupid pop song (which is totally fine) I think it deserves a little more than "Ha hah, you're stupid because you think too much about things."
posted by Jeanne at 9:25 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


"TiK ToK” depends for its success on its capacity to polarize, and to polarize instantaneously: I would pretty much bet money that anybody who derives pleasure from this song is going to derive at least part of that pleasure by imagining somebody like me recoiling from it."

Why are ppl having so much trouble parsing this? The "anybody" deriving pleasure = young people. And yes, the less old smarties approve of your obnoxious bratty music, the more certain you are that you're on the right track when you hold it dear.
posted by damehex at 9:35 PM on April 1, 2010


partario, that's p. diddy saying "What up, girl?" because she says she wakes up in the morning feeling like him...
posted by anniecat at 9:36 PM on April 1, 2010


So I got as far as listening to TiK ToK's opening few lines, and then heard an autotune artifact. Instant FAIL.
posted by davejay at 10:20 PM on April 1, 2010


Oh please. Just because someone quotes Roland Barthes twice (and namedrops Shklovsky) in their essay it doesn't make it a semiotic analysis. This is pretty much like saying that you've written about the linguistics of x because somewhere in your writing, you point out how x and y sound similar. Or like stating that your essay is about the physics of z because at one point, you mention that z is affected by gravity.
posted by daniel_charms at 10:26 PM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]


I like this song. There's a momentum to it, and I like how the phrasing in the chorus and the sounds in the lyrics pulsate with the same momentum. This is also why I that Katy Perry Hot n Cold song -- the lyrics for that are also criminally dumb content-wise, but I enjoy the sounds that are strung together by those words and how those sounds are delivered in concert with the music.
posted by emeiji at 10:29 PM on April 1, 2010


When my best friend and I were both enormously pregnant, we passed many a day sitting in the one air-conditioned room of my house watching TiVo'ed videos and analyzing them for content. "The fundamental thesis of this piece," my friend Emma would say, "appears to be that the titular gentleman is so possessed of skill with the English language that he never lacks for female companionship, particularly ladies possessed of fine asses." "Ah, but witness the darker theme woven through," I'd add, "that there exist those who are jealous of him, and who attempt to cash in on his reputation through association."

This whole essay reminds me of those halcyon days.
posted by KathrynT at 10:39 PM on April 1, 2010 [5 favorites]


I confess I only read about half the article, but I liked what I read, I'm just tired and have other stuff to do. I did subscribe to that blog though.

The song is awful. It works for me as a workout song when it's playing at the gym though. Except that Mick Jagger line. WTF? Are the young people really attracted to Mick Jagger?
posted by serazin at 10:58 PM on April 1, 2010


Agreeing with the poster that Robyn is the progenitor of this particular kind of thing, and boghead's assertion of electro roots, and kkokkodalk's cite of L'Trimm as an antecedent for the vocal approach. One can't go wrong with MeFi for musicology! IMHO, the timbre and maybe even the cadence of this kind of rap voice can be sourced to Roxanne Shanti (if you took away, ya know, the skills).

While not much of a musicologist or a semiotician, the author of the linked article does make some obvious points. But the banality of the song's message is not conservative per se, it's merely part of the same zeitgeist of stupid. When considering the drunk girls stumbling around the club in the songs of Gaga and Kesha, et el, I wonder yet again: are The Millionaires parodying this or are they the penultimate of this?
posted by bonefish at 11:00 PM on April 1, 2010


The whole conservatism thesis reminds me of this bit in My Dinner With Andre where they're talking about how The Little Prince seems so fascistic to them.
posted by serazin at 11:04 PM on April 1, 2010


I think people who are analyzing the lyrics really closely are kind of missing the point. People like the song because they can STOP thinking while listening, not think about the lyrics. Most dance-pop songs (of which this is one) are successful for two reasons:

1. A chorus with driving momentum, through the phrasing of the lines (each leading and pushing into the next), and hypnotic, repetitive, heartbeat-like elements.
2. Hooks which stick in your mind, let you identify the song to your friends, and which you can remember and sing along with everyone at the club.

Tik Tok has both of these, and in spades. The chorus is driving, with nice beats and repetitive in melody and rhythm. It has the perfect hypnotic marching kind of vibe which drives that loss of self-consciousness which people love while dancing.

It has at least 3 hooks:
- The first line "Wake up in the morning" combines loose rappy delivery with electro-y synths underneath and autotuned - it's distinctive and memorable
- The falling note, straight on the beat repetition of "Tik Tok" to signal the chorus.
- The "Oh Oh Oh Oh" with the yodel style vocal break to bookend the end of the chorus.

Note the lyrics are kind of irrelevant in this analysis. My Humps was the classic example of people saying "But the lyrics are SO STUPID!". They sure were, but the driving momentum chorus and appropriate hooks were in place, and off it went!
posted by dave99 at 11:37 PM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]


Stunning article -- for it's lengthy eloquence, but also for its insight into the psyche of pop-culture. Now I know why I've never formed an opinion on Tik Tok: The song is a unalloyed fact; I accept its existence, then move along, disinterested and indifferent and ambivalent.

Oh, and if you couldn't bear to read the whole thing, then at least read the last line in this article.

The last line summarizes the entire argument of the original article in one sentence.
posted by Galen at 3:51 AM on April 2, 2010


Ke$ha's producer says she'll be the Halloween costume this year, where Lady Gaga was the Halloween costume last year.

Let's all GRAR at him and TP his house. He is so wrong.
posted by mccarty.tim at 5:25 AM on April 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


Also, there is no fucking way Ke$ha is the next Madonna, especially when we have Lady Gaga. That article I linked to is just GRAR-bait.


Back on topic, I would like to say: They call Ke$ha "K€sha" in Europe, because of the metric system.
posted by mccarty.tim at 5:32 AM on April 2, 2010


I cannot listen to music like this and not think of Nineteen Eighty-Four's versificator:
"The tune had been haunting London for weeks past. It was one of the countless similar songs published for the benefit of the proles by a sub-section of the Music Department. The words of these songs were composed without any human intervention whatever on an instrument known as a versificator. But the woman sang so tunefully as to turn the dreadful rubbish into an almost pleasant sound."
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:44 AM on April 2, 2010 [9 favorites]


Also, there is no fucking way Ke$haLucasz Gottwald is the next MadonnaJellybean Benitez...

FTFY

FWIW, I liked TikTok. It's not a great pop tune, but it's not bad. I'd add it to my iPod for my run. That Mick Jagger drop does stick out like a sore thumb. Probably a deliberate attempt to make everyone go "ewww", mother and daughter alike.
posted by Thorzdad at 6:30 AM on April 2, 2010


It's good electronic music, that's all. But if you're looking for semiotic, or is it semi-idiotic?, content, my dog has a dingleberry, and he's gonna drag drag drag his ass all ova ya face....Big message there.
posted by gorgor_balabala at 7:16 AM on April 2, 2010


Listening to Tik Tok makes me feel crusty and greasy.
posted by oinopaponton at 7:22 AM on April 2, 2010


*which some part of me was really, really hoping would have something to do with the mechanical man from the Oz books

My three year old Oz-loving Gaga-loving kid is going to love this song, and I am going to tell him it IS about said mechanical man. This will only make him love it more.
posted by norm at 7:44 AM on April 2, 2010


That Mick Jagger drop does stick out like a sore thumb. Probably a deliberate attempt to make everyone go "ewww", mother and daughter alike.

i never thought that much of mick jagger, appearance-wise, until i saw him perform in Rock and Roll Circus. he's not my type at all, but i still found his performance incredibly sexy. and it's definitely along the lines of what girls seem to go for these days.

i like tik tok but don't particularly like the singer; i sampled some of her other stuff but did not like it, but i can appreciate one-hit wonders. the song, on a non-thinking gut level, makes me want to move.
posted by fallacy of the beard at 7:51 AM on April 2, 2010


daniel_charms, the 'Semiotics' title was my idea when posting this, the blogger never claimed to be anything more than a close reader. I wasn't sure about it, having only informally studied the field, sorry if it was pretentious.

Nevertheless I maintain that even if fans aren't listening to the lyrics of pop songs, they do mean, or signify, something.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:49 AM on April 2, 2010


As someone who actually has brushed his teeth with Jack as recently as a few days ago, I can confirm that it serves as an excellent numbing agent for toothaches.
posted by naju at 8:52 AM on April 2, 2010


My stepdaughter was talking about Ke$ha the other day and I was, like, who?
Now I'll have to see if she likes Uffie. Pop the Glock!
posted by battleshipkropotkin at 9:13 AM on April 2, 2010


As someone who actually has brushed his teeth with Jack as recently as a few days ago, I can confirm that it serves as an excellent numbing agent for toothaches.

There's no upper-limit to the market for pop-songs about alternative dental care.
posted by dirtdirt at 9:42 AM on April 2, 2010


God damn. Wasn't for all the April first dates on a lot of this thread, I'd be forced to call down the righteous force of Moff's Law on most of it.

Great frickin' essay. Links to stuff like this I'd otherwise miss is one of the reasons I like this place. Thanks, Potomac Avenue!
posted by kipmanley at 10:07 AM on April 2, 2010


As someone who actually has brushed his teeth with Jack as recently as a few days ago, I can confirm that it serves as an excellent numbing agent for toothaches.

So, really, it's a song about a girl with inadequate dental insurance who has a toothache, is using alternative pain management for it, and is counting the minutes, hours, and days until she is eventually able to get treatment. It's a protest song against the pathetic state of dental insurance policy in the United States and the plight of the middle class.
posted by The World Famous at 10:56 AM on April 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


Finally got around to reading this, and it was really interesting. I have no particular feeling for Ke$ha one way or another, but I now love Beyonce more than I ever expected to considering I generally dislike her music. Thanks for posting this, it was fun to chew on.
posted by Errant at 11:08 AM on April 2, 2010


It has at least 3 hooks:
- The first line "Wake up in the morning" combines loose rappy delivery with electro-y synths underneath and autotuned
- The falling note, straight on the beat repetition of "Tik Tok" to signal the chorus.
- The "Oh Oh Oh Oh" with the yodel style vocal break to bookend the end of the chorus.


Yeah, and these and a dozen other elements of the song - the shoutout to P.Diddy where he (surprise!) responds, the "eechy eechy eechy" cadence of her rapping, the chiptune intro, they all seem like options the producer selected from checkboxes in PopSongMakerPro 3.4 or something.

That Mick Jagger drop does stick out like a sore thumb. Probably a deliberate attempt to make everyone go "ewww", mother and daughter alike.

I think it's the swagger/Jagger rhyme + "I'm cool 'cause I reference something oldskool like the Stones" + random unexpected popculture reference = humor (see the Adjective Movie "parody" series -- no wait, absolutely don't do that).
posted by straight at 11:23 AM on April 2, 2010


You know what Pandora pulls up on my new "TiK ToK" station pretty regularly that's structurally similar? MIA's 'Paper Planes'. Similarly, uh, "polarizing". Less auto-tune.
posted by GuyZero at 3:23 PM on April 2, 2010


I really don't get all the auto-tune hate. It's just another vocal processing technique. Even the best singers use all kinds of effects to make them sound better -- filters, chorus, doubletracking, reverb, etc... even something as simple as cutting and pasting multiple takes together. And obvious auto-tuning isn't so much 'cheating' as it is distortion. You're intentionally altering the character of the voice to make it sound unusual and attention getting.

To me, it's in the same tradition as flanging Toni Fisher's voice on the Big Hurt (the first song to use the flanger effect) or the sped-up chipmunk vocals on rave tracks.
posted by empath at 4:19 PM on April 2, 2010


Or running John Lennon's voice through a Leslie Speaker in Tomorrow Never Knows.
posted by empath at 4:21 PM on April 2, 2010


I really don't get all the auto-tune hate.

I think mostly we're tired of it. And, as a producer, it annoys me that people who apparently use it to actually get vocals to be in tune don't use something vastly superior and less obvious, like Melodyne, instead. But mostly, I'm just tired of it. It's like if every third pop song for a decade had vocals with the Al Jourgensen Ministry distortion effect. Sure, it's fine sometimes. But it's so overused that it's surprising that there's a single person on the planet who isn't sick of it by now.
posted by The World Famous at 4:22 PM on April 2, 2010


Like I said, it's probably because they're not using it to get the vocals in tune. They actually like the way that autotune sounds.
posted by empath at 4:25 PM on April 2, 2010


They actually like the way that autotune sounds.

For sure that's what they're doing on TiK ToK, it's just so... I dunno. I guess the auto-tune knob also goes to 11.
posted by GuyZero at 4:27 PM on April 2, 2010


Yes, they're using it as an intentional effect, and not just to get the vocals in tune. That the source vocal is horribly out of tune is just a handy coincidence. It's the use of autotune for that effect that we're sick and tired of.

And I, personally, am also annoyed when it's used not as an "effect" but as a tuning tool, since it sucks as a tuning tool.
posted by The World Famous at 4:28 PM on April 2, 2010


I actually was messing around with auto-tune a while back on an off key vocal that a friend had for a remix he was working on. It was actually pretty easy to use it to pitch correct the vocal and have it sound natural with the presets it has. I also tried to get the distorted t-pain/cher effect and couldn't figure out how to do it without totally trashing the vocal.
posted by empath at 6:56 PM on April 2, 2010


It can sound pretty good. But Melodyne is so much better that I don't think it makes sense to use Autotune unless you're going for the autotune sound.
posted by The World Famous at 8:47 PM on April 2, 2010


k I never listened to her before but the genius of Ke$ha is making autotune sound completely wasted. I mean the autotuned voice sounds drunk, the rapping sounds drunk and like nobody thought much about the lyrics. And like she's way oversinging out of sheer drunken enthusiasm. all of which is hard to do actually. I mean glossy overproduced autotuned pop music generally is the opposite of spontaneous, enthusiastic, messy and fun, but she makes it work. I'm too old to listen to this stuff but I like her.
posted by citron at 12:58 PM on April 3, 2010


If Tik Tok is about toof aches, then Just Dance is a case study on Korsakoff's Dementia. Which would make Lady Gaga even more awesome.
posted by mccarty.tim at 2:10 PM on April 3, 2010


Come to think of it, that works all too well. A hipster who drinks too much develops Korsakoff's from chronic alcoholism, and forms the confabulation that the mental hospital she's in is a nightclub.

I've had a little bit too much - Right off the bat, alcoholism is referenced.
All of the people start to rush.
Start to rush by.
- She is surrounded by strangers because of being institutionalized
A dizzy twister dance
- Reference to seizures, or ECT perhaps.
Can't find my drink or man.
- Again, disoriented as she's been institutionalized.
Where are my keys, I lost my phone.
- The orderlies took them away a long time ago
What's going on on the floor?
I love this record baby, but I can't see straight anymore.
Keep it cool what's the name of this club?
- It's not a club
I can't remember but it's alright, alright.
- Unable to form new memories, textbook Korsakoff's.

I could go on for the rest of the song, but it's clear I'm not just chasing zebras. And her name is Gaga! What else could express the confusion and madness of being unable to form new memories?
posted by mccarty.tim at 2:25 PM on April 3, 2010 [4 favorites]


Sorry, Just Dance is obviously about illuminati mind control.
posted by empath at 3:07 PM on April 3, 2010


OH MY GOD I LOVE YOU SO MUCH mccarty.tim
posted by infinitywaltz at 12:27 AM on April 4, 2010


Sometimes I wish songs were sung in other languages so I didn't have to listen to the lyrics.

Yeah, see, that works great until you discover Scandanavian Folk Metal and you're getting into it and telling people how much you like it and then you do a little research and discover how many of the bands creating it have white power type leanings which would have been obvious if you understood any Swedish, Norwegian, or Finnish.
posted by rodgerd at 1:04 AM on April 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


lol
posted by Damn That Television at 11:57 AM on April 13, 2010


"I also tried to get the distorted t-pain/cher effect and couldn't figure out how to do it without totally trashing the vocal."

I thought I remembered seeing somewhere that it was from setting the attack and decay to zero.

(It is amusing how this blog entry basically predicted people saying, "You think too much about this song!" as a dismissal and then seeing people say that in the thread.)
posted by klangklangston at 11:20 PM on April 22, 2010


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