Archive for loud women

55. ‘Entertain’ by Sleater-Kinney (2005)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on July 11, 2010 by G.K. Reid

I miss Sleater-Kinney.  It’s a neat trick to be consistently tearing the world a new one and spitting on human weakness in disgust, yet make it sound so irresistible.  Obviously, I’m on board with them a lot of the time, but I can also often be guilty of what they’re ferociously denouncing.  Such is the case with ‘Entertain’; me being something of an out-and-proud sucker for crap reality TV, I can hardly pretend to not be part of the problem that Carrie and Corin are howling about here.

So what saves Sleater-Kinney from sounding like a bunch of self-righteous, no-fun grouches (aside from the fact that they’re completely on the money?)  Well, for starters, there’s no sanctimony here – it’s genuine anger; the band exist not to lecture, but to liberate themselves.  Despite their targets here being pretty damn easy ones, lyrically the band avoids both cliché and cheap leering.  Mostly though, it’s because their disapproval is so well-mounted, with those explosively intertwining, whip-cracking vocals galvanised by some unruly guitarwork and the reliable vehemence of Janet Weiss’  drums.

In short: COME BACK, GIRLS. WE NEED YOU.

Bonus points: Despite their protestations, I still reckon they’d enjoy a good Coach Trip marathon now and again.

57. ‘Dirrty’ by Christina Aguilera (2002)

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on July 11, 2010 by G.K. Reid

How fortuitous that I’ve just been banging on about the wonderful nonsense that is pop music, only to find that next on my list is this, arguably the most brazenly ludicrous pop event of the decade.  As the above picture succinctly demonstrates, ‘Dirrty’ is a towering specimen of camp self-affirmation, and a no-holds-barred assault on public taste and decency that John Waters would be proud of (oh, if only Xtina weighed 300lbs!)

Aguilera’s claims to independence and self-possession here can easily be dismissed as cliched, but they’re far from disingenuous – ‘Dirrty’ has a real violence of intent and tangible fury embedded within it, strongly evoked by the almost cacophanous force of the production.  That Aguilera figured a noisy embrace of (and insistence upon) sexuality as the key to liberating her from the deathgrip of the Disney Club was arguably as dubious and depressing as it was wholly successful; ‘Dirrty’ provides one hell of a text for feminist debate to pour over.  In response to any criticism, however, I suppose Aguilera can always say: ‘well, that wasn’t me with the shaved head and the umbrella and the parasitical husband and the baby driving the car. I’m just sayin”.

Bonus points: Redman is a strong contender for the ‘Best Guest Rap of the Decade’ award. So many choice lines, but my favourite will probably forever remain: ‘I keep my car lookin’ like a crash dummy drove’‘waiting for Sister to Act, like Lauryn Hill’. ‘We blessed, and hung low, like Bernie Mac (b’nnie mck!)