East Bay View (a blog about several things)

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Monday, November 02, 2009

Hit count: Couldn't get no worse

Brad Paisley, "Welcome to the Future"

The anti-"Born in the U.S.A.". Springsteen tells of dead cities; Paisley is tickled that he can play Pac-Man on an iPhone. One mourns losing family in Vietnam; the other glorifies family who fought in the Second World War. One observes the arrival of mass incarceration, and knows that's it's only going to get worse; the other thinks things are going to be dandy now that we have a black president. So why, then, is "Welcome to the Future" almost, if not quite, as great a song as "Born in the U.S.A."? One of my core beliefs is that rock and roll is, with many exceptions, better when it's joyous than when it's miserable. But optimism has to be justifiable, and it's been a while since a belief that macro-scale things were looking up was distinguishable from delusion. No one has made optimism seem as reasonable as Paisley does here since the time when kids could be born to run -- the time when there was somewhere to run to. Even those who don't believe that Our Barack will deliver us from our sins have got to admit that now, yeah, maybe we can start cleaning up the messes we've made in years and decades past. It's our time. Now make something out of it.

(another take for all you anti-capitalists)

Pitbull, "I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)"

The won't-go-away songs of 2009: "Boom Boom Pow" (masterpiece), "Poker Face" (held up for a shockingly long time), "Love Story" (great but enough already), "Halo" (has faded into innocuousness, not unpleasantly), "Use Somebody" (ten months on the radio is too many by nine-and-a-half), "I'm Yours" (please, no more, for the love of Hall and Oates). And this, the only one to significantly benefit from over six months of saturating the airwaves, at least as much as it's only now I've decided it's a pretty good song. Couldn't get over the played "Street Player" sample at first, but the beat eventually got to me -- as Manu Chao knows, a ping is as good a hook as any. Six months have not revealed to me whether the woman in question looks "like King Kong", or if her ass looks like King Kong, or if her ass looks like King Kong's ass, or, for completeness, she looks like King Kong's ass. What I can state with some certainty is that she has a large posterior, and that all concerned parties are pleased about this.



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