J-Lo, Minaj: Pop Videos on Ecstasy
By Laura T.
What has happened with pop videos in the last week?
Lots of feathers and silk, boobs and butts, female bravado, and ludicrous dance sequences.
And Oh My God:
Yeah, okay, it’s nothing new. But what these two songs have in common is a strange techno dance beat and a propensity for using loud dissonant noises to grab your attention.
Right, and the boobs.
I expect this sort of thing from Nicki Minaj and her posse. Obviously, they have to make every successive video a step above the previous one in terms of its grotesque display of female sexualization.
But I honestly expected something more from J-Lo, who, I hoped, had been doing this long enough to know better. To know that some of this just isn’t necessary anymore.
But it’s not just this video, it’s pretty much all the videos she’s been putting out lately.
You could argue that it’s her image, as a Latina goddess, that makes her doomed to continue to flaunt herself in this way. But the video starts off with the pretense that this will be some kind of artful endeavor, with unexpected things like an underlying meaning. Some intelligence at all. Any kind of depth whatsoever.
And then the music starts, and it all goes to hell.
And the music itself, people. The music just isn’t good. Not even remotely.
As the Pop, Hip-Hop (and even Rap) genres are now gravitating toward the realm of Techno, Dance (and even Dubstep), many songs seem to have been artificially injected with this new sound rather than arriving at it for any reason other than to be different and provocative. And when you’re pumping your song full of weird sounds in order to provide a suitable background for your over-the-top music video, I think we’ve hit a breaking point.
Artists like Skrillex, I would argue, with his video for First of the Year, arguably records a song with his weird sounds and then creates a video concept to enhance and deepen what he created. But I guess it’s just the chicken before the egg argument: we’ll never be able to know which really came first.
But I kind of wish that the nearly-victimized kid in the Skrillex video would do this to the directors of the aforementioned boob fests: