Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Beyoncera and "Run This World (Girls)" Single Review

Beyonce. Beyondslay. Beysus. The only female pop star that’s synonymous with just the letter “B” has finally made her return to music. After the massive success that was the #1 smash, “Single Ladies,” and the subsequent hits after, the I Am…Sasha Fierce era ended on quite a high note. Beyonce had landed another mutli-platinum album, created a viral video phenomenon, sung at President Obama’s Inaugural Ball, demonstrated the utmost class after the Kanye/Taylor VMA incident, earned 10 Grammy nominations (she won 6), embarked on her sold-out “I Am…Tour”, and became the biggest-earning entertainer in 2010 with $87 million. She does in 2 years what your fave can't even do in their lifetime. NA-NA-NA DIVA.

So…how do you top that? Not one to take more than a short hiatus, Beyonce is setting out to make 2011 her year once again in a heated return to prominence with some other less-than-worthy divas. The main 2 being Madonna Gaga and Ke$ha Britney who have proven to be solid contenders so far [though Adele's the one snatching everybody's wigs this year]. Speculation and tiny bits of info about Bey’s 4th solo album had slowly started to trickle out early this year. Hype around her next single then began to build after pics of the video shoot and short clips of the song were “released” into the public’s hands the other week. It was learned that the song would be called “Run The World (Girls)” [because she's never made a girl anthem before] and now we have finally been graced with the final version that’s ready to slay the charts! Or is it?

Even Bey knows she is a beacon of light.
At first listen, “Girls” doesn’t seem like anything too special. And after the next couple of listens, it still quite doesn’t. Lacking the punch of “Crazy In Love”; the funk of “Déjà vu”; and the sassiness of “Single Ladies”, I don’t get the instant gratification that I usually do from Beyonce’s lead singles. Her fans also seem to have mixed reactions to what is essentially another "Independent Women." The lyrics are big and bold as she boasts about everything from "girls rocking the club in the latest" to "running this motherf--" aka the world. So nothing out of the ordinary for Ms. Knowles, but she's as sharp and confident as ever.

Her vocals are on par with her other material which is to be expected. She delivers that classic Beyonce style that includes seamlessly transitioning from rapid-fire runs to her 'I demand respect' belting, and the bridges allow for her to show off some impressive harmonizing. She has always been know for the attitude in her voice, and if there's any diva that can carry a song on a her voice alone, it's Beyonce. All of this is backed by a marching band drum line beat and a looped sample of Major Lazer's "Pon De Floor"--a sample that should sound familiar if you've ever been to a club.. Unfortunately, that samples becomes the main draw of the song and for that reason you're better off listening to the original. Part of the problem of the song is musically, it just sounds pretty flat--not necessarily generic, but it's underwhelming. Granted it sounds like nothing on the radio which is refreshing, but Beyonce can do better.
Urban radio will no doubt pick up the track, but ever since "Irreplaceable" Beyonce has been able to keep the Pop charts on lock too. It should be interesting to see how an edgier track such as "Girls" will do on that front. Then there is the video. Even though MTV and BET playing music videos is a thing of the past, Youtube has become a huge reason to why songs are as successful as they are today. So it should come to no surprise when sales are spurred after the video is released (if the song ends up having trouble taking off). A teaser for the video was sown the other day…

Other rumors of the new album include a duet with her mini-me, Rihanna.
 If this is to happen, consider me slayed, dead, resurrected, and executed all over again.
Beyonce's untitled 4th album will surely give the fans and general public what they want regardless of what they feel about the lead single. In all, "Run This World (Girls)" is a welcome return to what many call the best performer since Michael Jackson. The Queen has returned to her throne and is here to show the basic bitches how it is done.

3/5 Wigs Snatched

ATTENTION: Andrew is here to crash Court's review. Because I am better than all of ya faves, and have a few things to say about this review and what I think about the song. I will keep it short because Court did a fabulous job with this review, didn't he?

1) Who cares if it is another girl power anthem? Every single big male artist more or less talks about their game and their swag on every song. All the trash like Britney and Ke$ha do is make songs about dancing and sexy come-ons. Why can't the baddest bitch and one of the strongest female singers of the last 30 years make a few songs about what she knows: RUNNING. THIS. SHIT. At least it isn't the generic love-the-rejects-of-the-world trash that Pink, Ke$ha, and Katy made. This is a very direct song stating that the strong women of the world run it.

2) I am not sure I understand loving the vocals and loving the beat and not loving the song. I will admit that every single rough demo I have heard over the last week were awful to me...but the polished, finished version gave me everything I wanted. Strong vocals, fierce (and fun ghetto) lyrics, and the beat, while a LITTLE too derivative of the song it samples, is LAVA. While I agree this song is more of a grower than other big hits of this year (Hold It Against Me, Born This Way, On the Floor), after obsessively listening all day, it might actually be my favorite. It is just ACHING to be bumped in a club at full volume.

3) A couple other notes: this was a smart song to sample. NOT everyone has heard this song. NOT every club plays it. So, the people who enjoy the song already get to see it achieve the mainstream success it always deserved. And the people who haven't, get the exposure the song also deserved. I am very happy with how it came out.

Also, one of my favorite part of the song is that Hurricane Beyonce is back. One of my biggest problems with IASF was her good, but kind of boring, vocals. Beyonce always endeared herself to me by her strong, forceful vocals in BDay on songs like Ring the Alarm, Upgrade U, and Deja Vu. This is one of the best songs of that caliber since that era, and I am happy to see Queen B back in that capacity.

All in all, this really is one of my favorite songs of the year, and I hope it has the mainstream success it deserves!!

5/5 wigs snatched

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