A musical Kiss of death
(Carly Rae Jepsen)
Each year, towards the end of June, schools open their doors and let their kids out for 2 glorious months of freedom. But this past summer of 2012, there was still something holding me back from having a truly bliss summer vacation. I could not escape it. No matter where I went, there it was. In the car on the radio, at parties, on TV, and even in the supermarket. This was the sound of Carly Rae Jensen’s hit single “Call me Maybe”, which has seemingly taken the world by storm.
It’s hard not to admit that the song’s catchy. But the positive things about it end there. In fact, I find it almost disturbing that the song became such a smash hit. While thousands of unknown artists around the world spend months constructing beautiful songs- (writing lyrics, formulating a melody, and working on vocals, etc.,) Jepsen took a different route with her music. “The whole sons was written, recorded, and produced within a few days,” Jepsen brags. But there’s no surprise there. Lyrics such as “before you came into my life I missed you so bad” simply make no sense, and other lyrics like “and all the other boys try to chase me, but here’s my number, so call me maybe!” are just annoying. The song has a poppy beat, but better lyrics could have come from my 5-year-old nephew.
Never the less, I knew it was judgmental of me to hate Jensen’s music based on one terrible song. And so, I followed up by listening to other songs she later released. First up was “Good Time” by Owl City ft. Carly Rae Jepsen. Once again, I heard a dance-worthy tune, but lack of any thought in the lyrics. “I’m in if your down to get down tonight, coz its always a good time” Jepsen croons, followed by even more mediocre lines. The song, of course, became another huge hit.
And then Kiss was released. Carly’s debut album, which hit stores on September 18th, 2012. I thought maybe she would use Kiss as a chance to redeem herself from the awful music she was already a part of, but she only made my negative opinion of her even more prominent. Basically, every song was a version of “Call me Maybe” in one way or another. Some songs on the album such as ‘This Kiss” and ‘Tug of War” are so auto-tuned that I barely recognize Jepsen’s voice. In other songs like “Curiosity” it seems she just threw together boring cliched lyrics (“you break my heart and watch it bleed”) and then added a few “oh oh ohhh’s” to hold the song together. The album screamed with lack of creativity, lack of writing, and lack of any musical talent,
So the next time your in your car and you hear those first, infamous sounds of Call me Maybe, or any song like it, you may want to pay attention to the lyrics as well as the musical style, and not just the irresistible beat. Its then that you’ll learn to appreciate that the best songs are carefully prepared with thought, time, and most importantly, soul.