Ha! Well, I admit that I ignored Lady GaGa until this fall but figured I’d see what all the fuss was about and gave The Fame a thorough listen.
To start, I’d like to say that she is actually a solid musical talent. She plays piano and writes her own music which for a Pop act is very rare.
I also watched a few of her performances and was impressed that she did not lip-sync even though it sacrificed her singing quality at times. But hey, doing acrobatic choreography and singing at the same time is not easy at all. It’s actually very hard to do and I admire any artist who can manage that without panting and losing their breath entirely.
The songs on this album are a mix of Hits and misses.
Pokerface and Paparazzi stand out as my favorites. These two tracks have a good foundation of analog sounding Synthesizers and very well executed progressions and choruses.
However, there are some real stinkers on here. One of them in particular is ‘Ech, Ech (Nothing Else I Can Say)’. This track sucks and remind me too much of Menudo, The Jets or New Kids on the Block for me to stomach. Perhaps it’s ironic. But still, being a listener of Classical Music I find that when irony sacrifices composition and expression it completely misses the point. Instead of phrasing an ironic structure or sound, producing an entire piece around an ironic concept diminishes the overall value of it.
My hope for this artist is that she progresses and develops her music and lyrical writing more and that ‘The Fame’ is written based on a concept and not her soulful expression and ideas. Pop has a way of going stale and entrapping artists in a particular style or sound. A fate which Lady GaGa may be facing if she doesn’t push herself beyond this sound. If she is intent on staying "FAMOUS" or whatever, she has two options, kick it up several notches or keep cranking out Discopop Dance Songs. I hope she chooses the first option and faces her career with guts instead of doing what her new Pop contemporaries have been doing for the past decade and selling the same product over and over with increased PR in order to keep market value up.
Her style… Yes, there is allot of fuss about it, rightfully so! It’s impressive and I am confident that if anything, her style will continue to change with each album she records. David Bowie being one of her primary influences will likely ensure that.
In summery, this album is a good first start and hopefully not the best she can do.
My advice to Miss GaGa is stay away from drugs and keep your focus on your music and develop your skills as a Musician.
I’d hate to see you go down in a blaze of glitter and flash bulbs before you truly have the chance to change the landscape of Popular Music.