Archive for April, 2010

‘Just Dance’ and ‘Telephone’ as Two Sides of the Same Coin

Posted in Feature with tags , on April 30, 2010 by David Hall

“Beyoncé’s costume near the Telephone video’s climax as she and Gaga dance amongst their victim’s corpses is strongly reminiscent of Wonder Woman, a literal Überwoman embodying all of the strongest character suits of the female gender.”
– Just Dance and Telephone as Two Sides of the Same Coin’

I’m conflicted when it comes to Lady Gaga. In chronological order of her singles here in the UK, I was reasonably partial to the giddy thrills of Just Dance. I believed Poker Face to be an appalling song partially because, to quote Wikipedia, “lyrically ‘Poker Face’ is about sex and gambling”. Well duh. Bit too literal thanks. I wasn’t even aware that Love Game had been released as a single until about ten seconds ago. I really, really liked Paparazzi, but I suspect that’s probably because it does a more than passable Gwen Stefani impression. Bad Romance is actually one of those songs that is just innately fantastic, and I can’t believe anybody would find its irresistible tripartite structure anything less than pop perfection. Then came Telephone. Initially at least I thought, ‘This is crap, it’s Just Dance warmed up in the microwave. Surely people can see through this? It’s the same song!’. Which got me thinking about it, and slowly, slowly, slowly I came around to the idea that Stefani Germanotta only bloody well knows what she’s doing.

Which is when I came across Gaga Stigmata, a website dedicated to critical art and writings on the subject of Lady Gaga, and was formulating a theory that Just Dance and Telephone were in fact two sides of one coin. They both deal with similar emotions and situations from a different point of view, Just Dance from that of emotion and feelings, and Telephone from a more considered perspective. Whilst Telephone’s narrator decides that their partner is the source of their problems and reasons a conclusion, Just Dance jumps to that same conclusion in a single leap. Gaga Stigmata and the very lovely editor Meghan Vicks inspired me to write an article on that very subject.

This is what I’m interested in doing when it comes to music, philosophising about it, and criticising it in a high art manner. If you’d like to go and check my article out, that’d be fully awesome. I’ve also been informed that if there is enough interest, Gaga Stigmata may be published in printed form reasonably soon, so go and read whilst it’s free!

Just Dance and Telephone as Two Sides of the Same Coin’
Gaga Stigmata on Twitter

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DISAPPEARS – LUX [At The 405]

Posted in Album with tags , , , , on April 9, 2010 by David Hall

“I mistakenly listened to the record with my iPod on random and didn’t notice the bloody difference. I struggle to think of another album where you could listen to the whole thing in a different order and simply not realise.”
DISAPPEARS – LUX review at The 405

As ratios go, Disappointment in Album Following Impressive First Track is not a good one to rate highly on. Unfortunately, the shoutily-named DISAPPEARS (I feel the almost-constant desire to refer to them as DISA-BLOODY-PPEARS!) do just that, with a record that simply diminishes from its opening track onwards. Gone Completely is seriously very, very good and I’m pretty sure I’ll still think that over the months to come. Its fluid blues-based riff over a chugging, staccato rhythm chord progression and whacking great clod-hopping drums with rambled lyrical barkings was like Glasvegas gone right. Then the rest of LUX is even worse than Glasvegas.

Anyways, please still check out my review at The 405, which I’m linking to on the day it was actually published for a change! Gone Completely is more than worth investigation on the band’s Myspace, which as usual is linked below…

DISAPPEARS – LUX review at The 405
DISAPPEARS on Myspace

The Dillinger Escape Plan – Option Paralysis [At The 405]

Posted in Album, video with tags , , , , on April 2, 2010 by David Hall


“For anyone tired of the cliché used when describing female vocalists that they could “read out a telephone directory and make it sound sexy”, Greg Puciato could read out a birthday card and make it sound threatening”
The Dillinger Escape Plan – Option Paralysis review on The 405

I was already a big fan of The Dillinger Escape Plan, so when the opportunity came along to review their new album for The 405, I snapped it straight up. For me Option Paralysis simply cements their reputation as one of the most exciting and innovative metal bands in the world. In a genre that can often sound stultified and archaic, Dillinger are bordering on the peerless.

Can I just point out that you can currently listen to Option Paralysis in its entirety on Dillinger Esc Plan’s Last.fm page. I doubt that situation will last forever, or even very much longer, so I suggest you check out the link below post-haste.

This is also a great opportunity to share with you what is probably up there in my favourite Youtube videos of all time. Which suggests I’ve constructed such a list, so I should move on. If you haven’t seen it already, watch, pick your jaw up and watch again. Incredible stuff…

The Dillinger Escape Plan – Option Paralysis review on The 405
The Dillinger Escape Plan on Last.fm
The Dillinger Escape Plan on Myspace

Photo of The Dillinger Escape Plan live from Wikimedia Commons.

Tall Ships – Tall Ships EP [At The 405]

Posted in EP with tags , , , , on April 2, 2010 by David Hall

“Yes it’s supposed to be random, yes it’s supposed to be kitsch; but this isn’t Frontier fucking Psychiatrist so it doesn’t work.”
Tall Ships – Tall Ships EP review at The 405

My review of Tall Ships’ debut self-titled EP has been up for some time on The 405 without me realising. So apologies for the rather lengthy silence, but I have plenty of things in the pipeline. I was relatively disappointed with Tall Ships, I must say; Books is tremendous, but nothing else quite lives up to the hype. Whilst I was writing this review, the BBC came to essentially the same conclusion, big thumbs up for Books but conspicuous silence over the remainder of the EP. Anyway, well worth a listen and their next move should be interesting.

Incidentally you might want to check out The 405’s rather tasty Good Friday Mixtape before gorging yourself to death on hot cross buns and chocolate eggs. Is The Sun Smells Too Loud the best thing Mogwai have ever done? Contentious, but it’s far and away the most danceable track they’ve ever produced; I bloody loves it I do.

Tall Ships – Tall Ships EP review at The 405
Tall Ships on Myspace