I was at a wedding last week. While I was dancing my face off, I realized that “Party Rock Anthem” has solidified itself as a wedding staple. It joins “Don’t Stop Believing“, “Sweet Caroline“, and anything by the Black Eyed Peas. What I didn’t hear at the wedding? Chris Brown’s “Forever“. BIG MISTAKE MR. WEDDING DJ! That song is going to be played ever hour on the hour at my reception. Each time it will be followed by “Ni**as in Paris“. That’s my only request, future wife. Obviously, “Forever” by John Stamos will be performed live at the ceremony by the man himself. I wouldn’t forget that, you guys. Time for the honeymoon playlist…
Kid Cudi – The Ruler & The Killer
We are batting 1.000 on Kid Cudi appearances in What Are Tunes. Before you roll your eyes, hear me out. This is definitely the WZRD-style Cudi that we’ve grown accustomed to lately. “TR&TK” fits the movie perfectly. It’s dark, creepy, and powerful. Sure, it’s not a hit, but clearly Kid Cudi is honing his new rock persona and using it appropriately. If you really don’t like it, I’m almost positive the Cudder well will run dry on What Are Tunes for a while. Ungrateful bastards.
B.o.B – Where Are You (B.o.B vs. Bobby Ray)
In the last What Are Tunes, I downplayed B.o.B’s “So Good” as a solid single but not a hit. I’ll be the first to admit I was in the wrong on that one. After more listens, it is definitely a radio mainstay for the next few months until Strange Clouds is released in May. Bobby Ray decided to treat us to another cut off his latest album with “Where Are You”, a very personal track where B.o.B raps about all the criticism he’s gotten since his first album. He became a pop culture icon and diehard hip-hop fans complained he lost his street cred. He sticks it to the detractors in this song, which coincidentally has a similar message as “Beast Mode”. I’m really digging “Where Are You” and it shows B.o.B’s range. It’s like he’s giving his critics the middle finger while playing the piano. That’s tough to do.
Gorillaz (feat. James Murphy & Andre 3000) – DoYaThing
Andre 3000 says there’s no new Outkast in the works. Bummer. Instead he’s decided to jump on everyone and anyone’s songs: B.o.B, Young Jeezy, Drake, Lil Wayne, and Ke$ha to name a few. Frankly, I’m more disappointed in the Weezy choice than the Ke$ha one. “DoYaThing” is a Converse-sponsored track that combines three artists to create a song to promote a crazy new Chuck Taylor shoe (probably). I can’t argue with the artist selections, however. The Gorillaz, although quirky, generally create good music, and James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem is a genius. Throw in a verse by 3 Stacks and it’s a recipe for success. It’s a very upbeat track, and doesn’t mention sneakers once. So…what’s the point of this again?
Arcade Fire – Abraham’s Daughter
We finally get some new Arcade Fire. Of course the year’s biggest movie gets some of the biggest acts in music to contribute original music to its soundtrack (AF, Kid Cudi, Maroon 5, The Decembrists, Taylor Swift). It really covers every genre. “Abraham’s Daughter”, like “The Ruler & The Killer” is another appropriate track for The Hunger Games. The song slowly builds up with a pounding drum beat and keeps the unique Arcade Fire sound. Hipsters used to love Arcade Fire, but now they’ve gone and won Grammys and appeared on the highest grossing movie of the year’s soundtrack. That’s so lame now.
Justin Bieber – Boyfriend
HE’S BACK! This ain’t your pre-teen daughter’s Bieber anymore. “Boyfriend” is a Mike Posner produced single of J. Biebs next album. Biebs is embracing his puberty voice better than I expected. Heck even I haven’t done that yet. His latest single is more “Usher” than “Kidz Bop”. How will it fare on the charts?* Does it matter? It’s Justin f’n Bieber. He could fart for 4 minutes into a microphone and it’ll be the #1 song on the Billboard Charts for 4 months. In fact, I hear that’ll be his next single.
*It’s already #1 on iTunes.
DJ Khaled (feat. Chris Brown, Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj & Lil Wayne) – Take it to the Head
Oh boy. DJ Khaled is back with another huge single. “Take it to the Head” is a star-studded record, but it falls short of previous Khaled successes like “I’m on One” and “All I Do is Win”. Lil Wayne is just terrible these days. My perverted Mad Libs make more sense than his verses. Chris Brown is batshit crazy but he kills every hook he’s on. Rick Ross is still alive? Nicki Minaj says pussy a lot again. It’s your typical Khaled track. I still have no idea what he actually DOES. He doesn’t rap OR produce. He just smokes Cuban cigars and drives speedboats around Miami in EVERY video he’s in.
And for no good reason, here are my power rankings for famous people with zero talent:
1) Kim Kardashian
2) DJ Khaled
3) The other Kardashians
Album to “Buy”
Wiz Khalifa – Taylor Alterdice
It’s not an album, but Wiz’s mixtape lands on What Are Tunes not because it’s good, but because there has been so much crap released lately that Taylor Alterdice sucked the least. For instance, unless you’re a lax bro, Mac Miller’s Macadelic mixtape isn’t worth your trouble. The All-American Rejects came out with an album, but even 16 year old Garbage wouldn’t give that thing the time of day. I’m pretty sure Madonna’s new album can only be found on cassette tape. If only Nicki Minaj’s album leaked before this went to publication (I’m only half-kidding).
The iTunes Shuffle
The Offspring – Pretty Fly (For a White Guy)
SO GLAD I landed on this jam. This was the first ever song I downloaded off the internet. That was followed by Fastball’s “The Way”. God, I’m the worst. You always remember your first time, right? Thanks again, Napster. Such a perfect 90’s song, and as if white people needed another anthem, this did the job.
Will Smith – Men In Black
Think really hard about the last time you were really angry. I mean SUPER PISSED. Now triple it. That was me this afternoon when the news broke. That’s right, Pitbull is responsible for the Men in Black 3 theme. No, I didn’t spell Will Smith’s name wrong, it’s really that Bud Light Twistin’, Dr. Pepper Real Good Time Havin’ motherfucker. “Men in Black” was so good I performed the dance at a talent show when I was a kid, and DIDN’T get beat up for it. Heck, MiB2’s “Black Suits Comin’ (Nod Ya Head)” was a piss poor attempt to recreate the same magic of “MiB” and it was STILL a damn good tune from the Fresh Prince. I mean, there was no need for a 3rd installment of the sci-fi comedy, but the least they could do is A) get Will Smith on the title track, B) just use the original song, or C) get one of his shitty kids to sing. ANY OF THESE are better than the Latin T-Pain singing about a movie he has no affiliation with! The press release that coincided with the song just infuriated me even more:
“I have so much respect for Will Smith, especially with our similar musical backgrounds,” said Pitbull
OH FUCK YOU BULL!
Wait, there’s more…
Barry Sonnenfeld, the director of MIB3, added, “My 19-year-old daughter turned me on to Pitbull. I’m thrilled that he wrote such a great song for our movie that totally gets it.”
[Downloads all of Pitbull’s music]
[Laughs maniacally and deletes each song one by one]
[Punches Barry Sonnenfeld’s daughter]
DMX Hall of Fame
DMX – X Gon’ Give It to Ya
“X Gon’ Give It to Ya” is the next to be inducted into the DMX Hall of Fame. It made an appearance on Garbage’s first JV Basketball warmup CD. My memory is hazy but I’m pretty sure we went undefeated because of it. The song is off the Cradle 2 the Grave soundtrack. If you haven’t seen C2TG, I have 4 words for you: DMX and Jet Li. Go ahead and find it on Netflix, I’ll wait.
[watches every Space Jam clip on YouTube]
Ok, how was it? Yeah, I thought it was the best DMX/Jet Li movie ever made too. This track has all you need for a top notch DMX song: DMX, plenty of barks, rhetorical questions shouted in your face, and growling. Grammy please.