I Listened to “Where Them Girls At” For 12 Hours Straight and Here’s How I Got On

I listen to many things, be it the darkly ambient music and musings of Chris Morris on Blue Jam, be it Pink Floyd and their seminal albums on the human condition, or even the simplest and truthful love songs that Bob Dylan can produce when he wasn’t stuffing LSD into everything he was consuming.

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To be fair, the croissants were simply just a vehicle for the crack.

 

But I am one unashamed of my taste or rather desire to listen to bad music. It is a need, a desperate need to listen repeatedly to Scatman John’s Casio stock-breaking album Scatman’s World – N.B. he was a massive Communist – Deep Blue Something’s terrible album made of “music”, Third Eye Blind’s even more terrible brand of skoppy shite and Oasis.

However, these “guilty pleasures” of mine are not limited to what nostalgia can force you to access thanks to the interwebs, no. There are some serious banging tunes out now that I cannot bring up in polite or learned conversation because well,… just because. The old rule of attending dinner parties; never talk about religion or politics. I think you could add in music there, without doubt.

There’s that cracker of a tune in Light It Up, Stay by Kygo and Maty Noyes, anything of late from the Beebs – it’s good folks, it’s plain good – but there is one song that seems to be the ultimate face-scrunching, can-having, aahhhwwwwwwwyeeaaahhhmaaan-inducing button masher of a tune to turn a bunch of people into complete scum tarts. That song is Where Them Girls At by the head-nodder extraordinaire David Guetta and features the mouth noises of Flo Rida and Nicki Minaj.

And I listened to it for 12 hours straight. Yes, 12 (that’s twelve in normal letter terms, folks) hours.

Why?

It seemed like a good idea at the time.

I had maybe three cans inside my head wiring and my belly ocean and was playing the ever-easy game that is Age of Empire II. Ever-easy in comparison to any Paradox Games like Crusader Kings, or more panic-creating Hearts of Iron. Let’s just say one time, I was invading Finland as the USSR, I fell asleep, I wake up four hours later to see that they have pushed back my army to fucking LENINGRAD.

That would not happen to you in Age of Empires, oh no. You could play the game in your sleep and would still have some degree of competency over the situation. Of course, this was the game I decided to not fall asleep whilst playing and it was all solely down to that fucking song. And I feel that no matter how much I love anything else in this world, I will only understand this completely as only I understand this.

“So many girls in here, where do I begin?

I see this one, I’m ’bout to go in

Then she said “I’m here with my friends”

She got me thinking, and that’s when I said

Where them girls at? (girls at?)”

Flo Rida initially comes into the club and feels overwhelmed with the choice ahead of him. Because clearly, as he is a man, he has the choice of club, the pick of the litter, the ownership of the young wans. When the girl then says – but we aren’t overly sure this is a girl, are we? I mean, when he says “I see this one” is he referring to a girl? Or an actual number one, the symbol 1 who identifies to the female gender? Remembering he is overcome by seeing the vast amount of girls in one place at one time, can we trust his speech, and reported speech at that? Alas. If we are to think of this being the case, that he is in fact speaking to animated female 1 in a club, the 1 states clearly she is there with her friends. And then he “got” thinking and asks this 1 grammatically incorrectly of course because of his insecurities and anxiousness with the whole situation, “where them girls at?”

“Hey, bring it on baby, all your friends

You’re the shit and I love that body”

I’m honestly disappointed with this line; I thought originally for the first twelve hours I heard it that it was “Hey, bring on baby, all your prejudiced shit and I love that body” I thought Flo Rida had become like mega self-aware. But no. “You’re the shit.” The monosyllabic git.

“You wanna ball, explicit, I swear you’re good, I won’t tell nobody

You got a BFF, I wanna see that girl, it’s all women invited”

Flo Rida isn’t comfortable with his male counterparts, be them friend or foe. He wants to surround himself with women. But he is there. Is he a woman now too?

“Hairdos and nails, that Louie, Chanel all up in the party
President’s in my wallet, no rules I’m ’bout it
Blow the whistle for the hotties”

Flo Rida casts aside his gender rules here surely? The whistle is blown for the hotties, but anyone can hear it, because what he is saying is that we are beautiful on the inside. With his make-up and hair done to the last, his clearly feminine style choice and vast amounts of money he is the master of his own destiny and as he goes on to say “I got it, shorty, it’s never too much, can’t be doing too much” in that we can never do enough in furthering this idea of love, the love that is “outta [his] reach”. Flo Rida is fighting

I think that says more than I ever could.

But before you become lost for words, you thrown a hape of them at once, by the ever-on and possibly angry Nicki Minaj. Is she the one (1) from earlier? Is she a friend? Is she responding to Flo Rida as sometimes is the whole idea in duets? Or is she singing something completely unattached, utterly detached from the song itself? Let’s find out, shall we?

“Peebe, Peebe who’s Peabo Bryson”

 I have no fucking clue Nicki.

 “Two years ago I renewed my license

Anyway, why’d I start my verse like that”

I don’t know Nicki, maybe try another draft of the verse before you’re asking gimpy questions in the middle of the FUCKING recording, I hear you ask?

Well, maybe she didn’t have the time to redraft. Hackers with honestly nothing better to do did what they did best and hacked into Guetta’s wif-fi and stole an acapella version of the song, this in turn forced Guetta to release the song early. He even got a member of the Pentagon to investigate it. Now. Amazing what Wikipedia will tell you these days. That needless question is then followed up with a rather excellently needless reminder of one’s rights to do as they please (1’s rights? Fuck. Here again.)

“You can suck a dick, you can suck on a ballsack

“No, no I don’t endorse that, p-p-pause that, a-a-abort that”

Thanks Nicki for reminding us we don’t have rights. #Repealthe8th

“Just the other day me go a London, saw dat, kids down the street

Paparazzi, all dat, hey, hey, what can I say?

Day day da-day day day day”

 What can you say? You say more than day on repeat, no matter how many drafts you couldn’t get through.

 “Coming through the club all the girls in the back of me

This ain’t football why the fuck they tryin’ tackle me?”

Now, I will admit, being grown up and cool has its perks, yes, but listening to the explicit version of this song is not one of them. I’m of the belief that the whistle sound effect adds a great service to the mood that is madness.

“Really, I pick dude at the bar like really

Looking like he wanna good time like, really

Said he had a friend for my home girl Lily, Lily, Lily, Lily”

And it’s tough shit for Nicki as in the end the fella she picks up from the bar is a silly lad who has mad grá for Lily and she is fucked. Nicki is forced into singing day day day again and again reinforcing how bad of choice she made in the first instance, just as Flo Rida is forced to repeat the chorus again and again, looking for a group to be comfortable with.

And when you listen to sometime like that for twelve hours straight, you figure out some things about yourself. Now, from my half attempt at a comic-takedown of the song, of its subject matter, it clearly is awful, be it lyrically or musically which was something I didn’t touch on. Mainly because the music was being beat into my eardrums that that was simply it, that was what I would hear for white noise for a while after. And even with that, listening to something as a joke on oneself, for it to turn bad, and then good and bad and good again, I can listen to this with a smile on my face and for fear of employing Nicki Minaj’s own inquisitive logic to myself, why? Why can I listen to it and not have PTSD? Is it because it isn’t that bad? Alas. An answer, an answer, my kingdom for an answer.

All I know now is that even after what some would describe as can-boarding, I’m alive. That’s something, eh?

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White Man Feels Important, Discusses Radiohead Album On Blog No One Reads

Like the vast majority of Radiohead fans, I went spare with excitement hearing the news of new material being released. Excellent, Radiohead will fix everything I thought. Was everything broken? Didn’t fucking matter, Radiohead were releasing music. But that’s ages ago I hear you say. You’re right. I heard you, but I heard nothing about any reviews save people’s acclamation of Burn The Witch.

Up to the point of writing this “review” I had not come across any reviews nor had I heard anything good or bad from my friends, the majority of which would be devout disciples to St Thom et al. Indeed, I had no idea what it was called. Only when I went cheap-arsing my way through Spotify to give a listen to the rest of the album did I find out its name, A Moon-Shaped Pool, and I worried at how much they were planning to get away with on this release.

Radiohead have in the past gotten away with all sorts, be it some of the questionable choices on Hail To The Thief (The use of laser guns in some of the songs) or the absolute prick-acting that Thom Yorke can get away with and still be beloved by the well-kept masses that are the Radiohead fandom. Even the experimenting he does with his voice can be seen at times to be disrespectful, with moments where his voice is more akin to a drunken-baby instead of focusing on melodic construction. Would he and they be feck-acting with this album?

They feck-acted with the last one, King of Limbs being one of the most irritating blip-bloppy start-stoppy scuts of an album that was only half-redeemed by its second half. There I go again, being a Radiohead fan, looking to forgive their faults. And King of Limbs was a fault. I will have that discussion with anyone. But, alas, alack and indeed as well, what would this album hold?

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He looks delighted with himself anyways. For a change.

Before I bought the album all I had were Burn The Witch and Daydreaming to go by. The former was a great piece, strings being used to great effect and Thom Yorke deciding to sing like he used to rather than the arse-boxing he has done of late. A true return to form of creating good solid sons with a bit of an edge. But the latter…

Well, Daydreaming gave us a large problem. Gone was the crisp efficiency of Burn The Witch and what had replaced it was a sloshing six minutes of mawkish nostalgia-driven sad tear sounds as Yorke cried a bit like a little haunted ghost lost inside a school boy’s throat. Nothing wrong with crying, or being a ghost, it was just that this isn’t very good crying.

Track three, Decks Dark, is a harmless and at times gorgeously basic with great key work guiding the song along until a little choral ghost – get used to them – brings it to another level, a better one but with more of a sinister tone behind “It was just a laugh, just a laugh, just a laugh.” My love of the laugh might cloud my judgement when I say it is a good song, but it certainly is one of the album’s best, given it’s well arranged, produced and recorded.  

An acoustic guitar greets us as Desert Island Disk plays, maybe the first time one has been heard for a while. The song does the best impression of Within You Without You of the 21st Century so far. It being the oddest of the bunch of tracks together, but still it holds its place. The album does make sense, everything is in its right place – hey, hey! – but it can suffer from over-stuffing the turkey, per say. And even having said that, it did seem over-written or over-wrought.

“You really messed up everything.”

No, not Thom Yorke’s own review of the album, this is the refrain in Ful Stop, a song that sounds like an automatic bin opening and closing repeatedly as someone learns how to play Stand Up (Sit Down) nearby and gets angrier and angrier as time passes as they realise their friend has learned Climbing Up The Walls. A quite acceptable jam happens in the middle eight – like I know what that means – but instead of capping off the song with an ending to make it redeemable, it just reverts back to little choral ghosts falling slowly back and forth in front of microphones with no deadliness.

A great song for a sad bit in an indie film? Glass Eyes. That is it. It’s a bad version of Give Up The Ghost. Fuck. FUCK.

Anything following Glass Eyes was sure to be better? Surely? A dirty bit of bass opens Identikit before downstairs Thom Yorke is busy in the bathroom, mumbling about all the cans he drank as upstairs Thom Yorke sings “I don’t want to know” him being a teetotaller and all. I think at least. Then some guitar and synth along with little singing ghosties being it to another place again, giving it a bit of grit and drawing the focus away from a sobering-up downstairs Thom Yorke. A fine ending, “Broken hearts make it rain” – a metaphor for something, I’d guess. Fucked if I know. There’s a cracking bit of guitar though to make Johnny Marr feel like a fool.

The Numbers is unfortunately not about the Lotto, but it is in fact a relaxed affair, with a steady and familiar chord progression – Talk Show Host for grown-ups, anyone? – and a vocal that is “normal” and relaxes you, as the overall sound and arrangement tends towards a Rick Wright affair you sleep to. That is of course before the strings light up the track and give the song an ending worthy of the sleeping giant quality the song itself holds. One to see live, surely. One of the best numbers on the album. Pun not intended. My apologies.

Just when things are going well, there he goes again at the start of Present Tense, dressed up in Ed O’Brien’s mother’s bedsheets like a little choral ghost, running around the studio, going “OOhoooooohhhhhooohhhh”.  The song’s intro, at least, written directly after they were lied to by someone who said King of Limbs was a good idea. And throughout the song he keeps repeating on himself in off-kilter moments that nearly overshadow the great music that actually is happening behind his pessimistic mutterings. It seemed to be forever filling a glass hat was already full.

Tinker Tailor Soldier Sailor Rich Man Poor Man Beggar Man Thief

My review?

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True Love Waits is a song that would be nothing new to Radiohead fans, having appeared on the great I Might Be Wrong: Live Recordings. Here though, it does sound a bit… different. Instead of the powerful, bare bones and soul and acoustic guitar heart-blast of a song, it now is more a binary code reading of emotion. The Guardian said that the “piano, vocals and percussion that sounds like a beetle using a typewriter” and I have to ask, is that a good thing?

The overall point I think I took from it was that there seemed to be a never-ending need for there something always to happening in each recording. Instead of letting something breathe, or elaborating on a great section of instrumentation, they delayed or distorted lyrics, or had ghosts wail without end but with plenty of echo which, all in all, created a definite atmosphere that you cannot go around or get away from.

Yes, of course, bands can evolve even without my white permission to do so, and they can change their sound and style and set up and anything else beginning with “s” but if I were not to judge this album by their past achievements I don’t think I could or would give it a second or third listen. They have created some of the best sounds of the past 20 years without doubt, but these songs are hardly of that quality. To put it another way, Dwight Yorke of the late 90s would’ve walked on to many teams. By the mid-00s, he could barely walk. But boy could he smile.

And with this scathing opinion, I have to ask myself a more important question; do I even actually like Radiohead?

Pray for me.

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