What I Learned: August 14

This week, I spend time in Tarrytown in a rental car listening to trap music, complete the lap that made me almost weep, learn that technology is not your friend and that being a workaholic is a better substitute for alcohol.

Saturday:

I’m up with the birds and armed with Apple Maps (which, fuck you by the way) I climb into rented Ford Focus and feel like I’m in a jet because I’m doing checks like a pilot. I have about 120,000 songs on an iPod and wind up listening to of all things…Fall Out Boy. Don’t judge me, it beat the radio at 7am.

It’s true what they say about driving, your mind completely blanks out and you focus more on piloting a massive machine through highways built years before you were a thought by people who didn’t think those roads would even be traveled for as long as they have been.

You get super philosophical.

I find parking relatively easy at 7:30am (I was in traffic to boot and DIDN’T drag race once it cleared up…) and run upstairs to make sure that everything is where it’s supposed to be. Again. My personal life, total shitshow, professional life sorta put together.

The team shows up and we load in for our epic journey to the most magical place on earth: the MSG Training Center in Tarrytown NY. While on the way, we encounter the fail that is Apple Maps.

Have you ever driven in near circles in the middle of a scenic part of a town and immediately think, we’re a car full of minorities, isn’t this is how horror movies start?

drive faster

I watch too many movies.

Anyways. We make a few turns and wind up where we’re supposed to be…fuck you Apple Maps…sincerely.

I’m about 5’7 which in the WNBA makes me a guard and probably a decent prospect; in the NBA that makes me the water girl. We arrive and check in and walk into the Liberty side of the basketball court.

I’m not gonna lie, I’ve been there before but I still kinda swoon because that’s what I do.

We land some hilarious interviews and shoot what could be the hit of our mini summer vacation.

We climb back into the car, strangely inspired by the entire day (it was two hours that felt like less than that which is saying something) get 5 Napkin Burgers (which is a miracle) and pile into the office for a late shift.

Sunday:

Even if you want to play a game of treat yo self, you still wind up being incredibly responsible and climb into the fray super early and with a box of bagels for your mom. You also want nothing more than to get another win in terms of getting that date to happen.

The date doesn’t happen.

The sobbing continues.

On the upside, we get two great videos lined up and good to go and I land another byline for work.

I learned that I have to master the art of multitasking.

Also. John Wick is awesome.

Adrienne Palicki, Bridget Reagan and Keanu Reeves carrying guns and being complete assholes. this is basically porn.

Monday:

Screaming matches over stupid things are always fun.

Driving around late at night is even more fun.

I tackled the FDR to the West Side Highway and like a superhero, sat and listened to Kid Cudi wondering about what the hell life is doing with me and my fate these days. I miss the opportunity to get Waffle for a drive around because Waffle being Waffle kept being Waffle and wiffled on me. I was tempted to be a creeper and sit in the car outside waiting but decided that I can’t keep reeking of desperation. The fact that Waffle would’ve gotten in the car with me for fun while I said nothing and blasted music and driven around until drop off at work. These are the things that make me feel all kinds of funny to be honest. I learned that I should just trust my lack of impulse control when it comes to these kinds of situations. Especially when I want to share views like this. IMG_2932

My drive looked nothing like this but I did in fact blast Steve Aoki, so I guess you could say, we were on track.

Tuesday:

So I had rum and cokes.

Wednesday:

Multitasking is multi-taxing but it’s done and honestly, I keep telling myself, I was unemployed last year. Stop bitching so fucking much.

I mean it’s one thing to be overwhelmed and completely burned out but it’s a whole other level if you’re completely like…miserable.

I can’t be miserable.

My brain can’t process that correctly.

My brain shorts out actually.

I know I’m due for a meltdown but I’m also due for an upgrade so I guess you have to burn things down to build something new from it.

I wind up in Jim Hanley’s Universe and have rather interesting conversations about some of the plot fuck ups in X-Factor (which I have admittedly not been keeping up with) but apparently, it’s a big nasty soap opera. I love the fact that out of many of the shops that I’ve been to, this is the only one that actively keeps you in the store with shit talk and comic gossip rather than aisle after aisle of things to look at and maybe consider buying. There’s a strange comfort in the nerd herd. Unsurprisingly, I pick up a bunch of titles that will take me until NEXT WEEK, to read but fuck it, I mean it’s what happens when you work; you get to do things you love.

One day I will write and work for Marvel.

It’s on the list of things to do before I die.

So’s a trip to London.

Fuck it, let’s do both.

Thursday:

Accomplished many a thing, including successfully feeding myself at a decent hour, addressing stuff and things and planning planning planning.

I wound up getting a preview screening pass to see Straight Outta Compton through work which was sweet. It’s insane that all this happened in my lifetime and I’ve basically grown up with this music; I lived through the of many anti-establishment movements fueled by music and made by people who just wanted their voices heard and the vision to just make shit happen. That doesn’t work anymore does it? That unyielding sense of success and self confidence that is needed to take what sounds like a failing idea or a longshot and make it actually happen. Think about it. Ice Cube was the hardest rapper in the game (still is) at the time and just transitioned because he just wanted to do it. Dre just wanted to make music that didn’t suck and E just had the momentum to bring everyone together. It’s probably one of the best made music biopics and some of the moments that happen made me oddly nostalgic for the time where my mom said I couldn’t listen to Metallica, NWA, Public Enemy and when she caught on, The Beastie Boys. Kids aren’t told ‘that’s bad for you’ and if they are, they don’t give a flying fuck. Go see it, it’s worth it.

It’s also creepy how damn near EXACT O’Shea Jackson Jr. resembles his father.

Best cosplay ever.

Friday:

For Whom The Bell Tolls indeed.

In on time despite a late start, doing a bunch of things for the next three days and eagerly anticipating…I dunno…a small moment to think, read a comic book and do more writing because I owe some people some of my letters rearranged into words.

Friday:

I had a salad. That’s not interesting until you realize and understand that my fat ass wants a burger and booze and to be left alone with Waffle on a romantic dinner date where all we do is talk shit and laugh at things.

I’m seeking a gal pal at this point.

An Angie to my  Peggy.

A Sandy to my Danny.

A Laura to my Carmilla.

Basically I’m just rehashing old feelings.

The weekend should be spectacular. Stay tuned.

Justin Timberlake’s New Video

There’s Voli (Pitbull)

There’s Circo (Diddy)

There’s El Cartel (Daddy Yankee)

There’s Crystal Head (Dan Aykroyd. I KNOW?!)

Casamigos (George Clooney) -missed branding for Migos though-

Casa Noble (Carlos Santana)

There are a few celebrity owned and championed liquors out on the market but very few of them have gone above and beyond to showcase their belief in the brand.

Enter. Justin Timberlake.

If you caught J.T on his 20/20 World Tour you’ll recall he had a VIP section bar that served Sauza 901. Timberlake, a native of Tennessee, forwent doing whiskey for tequila. Yesterday, Timberlake launched a video where the actor musician and a few other friends are donning giant limeheads and talking about their time in the spotlight before the apparently super smooth and mega tasty Sauza rolled up and fucked it all up with it’s ability to be enjoyed lime free. The clip feels like a lost episode of Behind The Music (Maybe Behind The Bar? SHOW IDEA!) and follows the lime’s rise and fall in the world of booze accouterment.

It makes sense too.

Today is the made up holiday  and Sauza is a tequila so….

Happy Cinco De Mayo

iPhone vs Android or How I Discovered My Relationship Style

Technology is amazing isn’t it? We can communicate 24/7 we can selfie ourselves sick and we can Yelp about how awesome this Thai place is from a mobile device. Two weeks ago, Apple unveiled the iPhone 6 and it’s been interesting to watch how it didn’t quite meet the standards iPhone users and tech heads had come to expect from the juggernaut company.

I wanted a new phone. I’ve had an iPhone 4s for a few years and have come to love all the things that it can do, basic as it may seem.

I wanted to feel fresh bold and new, the way a fancy new piece of tech can make you feel.

I decided to upgrade and wound up with a big Samsung Galaxy 5s.

I went back to my iPhone after one day.

What happened? Wasn’t I so totally head over heels with the Samsung? Didn’t I want to take all the elaborate photos and videos and go, ‘I’ve moved on Apple, you lack innovation’ ? Wasn’t I totally upset when U2 appeared on my phone for no reason? Of course I was. I was ready to move on and then I realized, the text messages from the one person who I value the most weren’t coming in and they weren’t seeing anything I was sending. Suddenly, a panic. All the photos and videos and easy to draw dicks on people’s faces (there’s an app for that) in the world couldn’t save me from the fact that I couldn’t communicate with the one person who means the world to me.

My brother was ecstatic.

I’d finally dumped iPhone for Samsung and he had so many things he wanted to show me but in the back of my mind, I kept thinking, Black Widow had done so much for me that it was hard to just start working with Sam. I was cheating. I was cheating on the phone that had been so good and loyal to me despite all the times I’d wanted to throw it out a window, shoot it with an m-4 rifle then detonate a claymore right on top of it. It had been good to me and here I was, wanting something new when we both knew that wasn’t how this was going to work.

I researched, I toyed with it. I watched videos and tried to find reasons why having this flatscreen pressed to my face would make me happy and I realized that what I really use the phone for is communication, sending random photos and of course, talking to another person.

legit search history

I’d compared notes and tested both phones in store before walking away but I was struck with tremendous sense of guilt and a little bit of sadness, feelings you get when you walk away from a relationship. I’d had Black Widow (my iPhone 4s) for about 3 years and in that time I’d seen so many concerts, Tweeted so many douchebagy things, taken adorable pictures and watched the most random videos on this thing. I’d had arguments that should’ve never happened, text wars that didn’t make any sense and all emoji texts with said person who was really the reason why I was going back to the iPhone.

What does all of this say about me as a person?

I value experiences and memories over making something new happen. New experiences are great as long as they’re with someone or something familiar because you always want to broaden your horizons with the thing that reminds you of how far you’ve come and how much more there is to go. I like knowing that the phone I took a certain picture on is the same one in my hand when I’m taking a new picture. I like to compare their flaws, I like to know that I love them regardless of that and my having every version of a picture or operating system or hell, even a case, is enough to make me glad that I have them in the first place.

I’m loyal. Even if you’re doing something stupid, I’ll be with you to make sure you’ve learned something from this royally stupid mistake and even then, I won’t make fun of you for it, I’ll be glad that you tried something different and stayed true to yourself.

I like them shy I guess, the type that surprise you with how simple things make your day easier. They’re intuitive without needing to be shown.

A lot of Apple slander happened while I was debating phones, it sounded a lot like comparing partners. I defended Apple’s snobby elitism when it came to apps; I’d rather use who you trust than just let anybody into my life. It’s clean and fits without being eye catching. You notice it, do a double take and wonder how’d they get together. Much of what Samsung does is directly influenced by Apple so it’s like why are you doing the extra to get noticed? Samsung’s so big and bold and Apple is humdrum and simple. I’m simple. I’m boring actually, so it makes sense that I like the tried and true personality of an Apple versus the LOOK AT ME IM SO BIG I’M A BEAST bravado of the Samsung series. They’ve got a lot of great things going for them and I’m sure there will come a point where I really just don’t want to be using an Apple product anymore but again, the nostalgia, the comfort and knowledge that this phone was with you when you needed someone to talk to keeps me on the iPhone team.

I hated that the Samsung demanded I use my Gmail account to connect everything. Sure, you need an Apple ID but it asks you if you want to download things whereas with Google Play, all the things you do on your email gets shopped around and the phone just takes whatever it wants. You have to tell it to stop downloading things. I don’t want people to know that I spend way too much time on tumblr looking at gif sets of my OTP’s THAT IS MY TIME AND YOU DON’T GET TO SHARE IT!

I didn’t like that the Samsung told me I was stupid for not getting Swype or that my pictures needed to be enhanced somehow. I’m like, “sweetheart, you have a 16 megapixel camera, far better than any other phone in the market but I still see blotchy images that I have to fix in post. You’re not that good looking that I have to perform miracles on you okay? ”

Back to the relationship thing.

It terrified me walking around with this phone I didn’t know.

We were strangers on a first date, trying to get to know each other, being awkward. I asked what it liked to do and it told me, Ask Google. I asked if it liked taking pictures of cats and it said, ‘Sure yeah whatever we can do that’ I tried watching a movie on it and it was nice, we connected but we were silent, occasionally brushing fingertips in the popcorn and cringing at the contact. I changed the interface to closer resemble the iPhone, labeling my folders in the same quirky manner that I had with iPhone. It felt wrong somehow. I was making this phone more like me instead of it making me work and adapt and understand each other’s quirks.

At the end of the night, the Samsung kinda sat on my bed, big and bright, wanting me to play with it some more while my iPhone sat on an end table, quiet, stoic, understanding. I wound up Tweeting from my iPhone about how much I wasn’t enjoying Samsung, confessing to the main piece that you had one night with the side piece and it was awful. The iPhone was polite, listened and understood; it wasn’t personal, sometimes you just have to see the world to appreciate the beauty of your own front yard. I tossed and turned all night, checking on Sam and Black Widow to see who’d text me (I’d left the wifi on the iPhone on since the phone itself was disconnected) and no one said anything to me.

I work up this morning and called my carrier and cancelled the Samsung. The tech on the other line was surprised, almost shocked that I’d just bought this glorious masterpiece of tech and I was going back to the same old same old. She was understanding (I gave her a five rating for her service) and walked me through the process of one night stand with Sam. I’d have to go back to the store and tell them why Sam and I just weren’t going to work out.

I backed up Black Widow onto the Tardis, my Macbook Pro. My wallpaper the same one from an August concert with the one person I constantly communicate with (and with whom the double entendre of this post is for) my apps back where they belong and everything seemed to right itself. The simplicity of knowing that this relationship is just going to make sense because we make sense settled over me like the blanket I want my boo to cover me when it’s cold out. We read each other’s thoughts and know what the other needs without having to be explicit about it.

I’m back with my iPhone and who knows what the future holds, I just know as long as there is an outlet and I have a charging cable, I’ll trust where we’re going.

Iggy Azalea The Fappening and The Cloud

A lot can be said and has been said about Aussie rapper Iggy Azalea and whether you can live with her or live without her does not take away from the fact that she’s at the crosshairs of what seems to be scorned lover’s revenge.

Jefe Wine or Hefe Wine or grown man who still clings to waning rap dreams is a producer/ person who was involved in Iggy’s early development claims to have a tape featuring the starlet in what was believed to be a private moment. The story alters where her camp claims that she was underage while he claims that was not the case but let’s all agree that it’s gross and continue.

Whether she was under age, consenting or caught on camera for someone’s spank bank, she’s absolutely right in saying that anyone who wants to profit from the alleged sex tape currently being shopped around is in fact a sex offender. Taking to Twitter, the rapper reiterated that she doesn’t have a tape and anyone who tries to sell off whatever they’re claiming is her is wrong.

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 3.59.18 PM

From Iggy’s Twitter feed

Since the rant, she’s remained silent, letting her legal team handle the controversy while she promotes her latest single featuring Rita Ora, “Black Widow” and while she’s stayed mum, Hefe Wine (really, that’s his name) continues his media tour defending himself and his actions. Thankfully, no screen grabs have appeared so far and hopefully they will never see the light of day but the fact that the demand for celebrity skin has boomed, culminating with The Fappening. A few days before Iggygate, hackers managed to access sensitive photos of several actresses, including Jennifer Lawrence, in various stages of nekkid selfie, posting them onto online creep capitol 4Chan and Reddit for the world to see.

While CNN demanded to know just WHO 4Chan is (it’s just…it’s the part of the internet the internet wish didn’t exist) normal human beings responded correctly: WHO THE HELL WOULD DO THIS AND WHY DO YOU WANT TO SEE THESE PICTURES?!

It doesn’t matter who the hell 4Chan is, what matters is that there is a place that openly practices the wild violations and fuels the worst web habits out of people.

Mercifully, a massive investigation was launched to find out just who managed to compromise so many accounts and rightfully prosecute them. No one should make money from theft and the hope is that proper legislation is passed to prevent entities like Vivid Entertainment from profiting from stolen merchandise not to mention the fact that this is effectively a violation of these women’s personal and private photos, whatever they are. We care as a culture because they’re famous, this is what they signed up for but the fact is, the same way that Rate My Ex was the bane of average women’s existence is the same way incidents like The Fappening are for celebrities. We should take caution as a culture to be careful about who we share these moments with and where we send these pictures.

THE CLOUD IS NOT YOUR FRIEND.

We don’t understand it. It’s there, but it’s not and it saves all your stuff? What why? Why don’t you just plug in your laptop and download everything, save it in a lock folder and never look at it again. Simple. The Starz Saturday Premiere movie “Sex Tape” made light of the mysteries of The Cloud but I’ve spoken to IT specialists who are completely fucking confused by it. We don’t get it. No one understands how it works and if you say you do, you’re a dirty liar. Just go into your settings, do it right now (leave this tab open) and make sure you disable that thing NOW.

the one time no one wanted a sex tape

 

It’s not just women who send out sometimes questionable things, guys have sent out dick pics and the most that’s happened are “do you even lift bruh ?” jokes. Anthony Weiner, Geraldo, Tito Ortiz have all sent the unnecessary dick pic or shirtless fading masculinity photo that ultimately leaked and they died out on the wind just as quickly as they appeared. For men, it’s a showcase of their masculinity and it seemed almost culturally acceptable for these pictures to appear, because I don’t know about you but nothing says romance like a dick pic. Women on he other hand, have to have this alluring quality about their photos and they don’t ever fade away. Sure I can make a saggy pectoral joke about the guys, but the ladies are forever immortalized in that moment for just how hot they are and are reminded that they will never be that hot again. How we communicate our desires to one another has evolved, especially with how dependent we are on technology for these interactions. Sexting, Skype, Snapchat, we’ve developed a digital language of love that seems to getting bolder and bolder as time goes on. Just imagine when we have holograms.

Hey girl

There’s a sense of one upsmanship that occurs when it comes to letting someone know how you desire them, given how this generation is constantly on the go; we’re never in the same room but if we were, here’s what you should be looking forward to.

Women are subject to far more scrutiny when it comes to the level of sexual explicitness in the confines of their adult textual relationships. The question that comes up most often is, ‘why would she send that?’ We condition ourselves as women to censor our sexuality and the ones who own their sexuality are usually dragged out and shamed. She clearly misbehaved and the photos or video being shared are a direct result of that misbehavior, not the people who received them being irresponsible with them. The people who made something private public aren’t embarrassed as publicly as the subject. In the case of The Fappening, those photos were more than likely meant for the person whom they are involved with, not for the prying eyes of the public. They were taken and sent with trust and for hackers to think that we want to see that is where we as a culture are starting to go down the dark roads in terms of our respect for another human being’s privacy.

Yes, we love to look at other people, especially famous people, that’s what they’re there for and we forget that they are people who just got lucky with either their looks or talent or both. Many celebrities have bounced back and recovered from the scandal, made light of it and continued onward and upward and we’ve forgiven them for the indiscretion. The real problem is that we have yet to figure out just how to stop it from happening and how to stop making it news and wanting to see hot celebs being just like us; we have to be scandalized by it and want justice for that person who’s privacy was violated. We have to put ourselves in their designer shoes and imagine what it would be like to have ourselves plastered everywhere or sold without our permission to the highest bidder. If Kim and Kanye weren’t selling their wedding photos for less than 10 million why shouldn’t someone be able to profit from their own bodies? Remember when everyone went to Playboy when they wanted to show their bits? Those days are gone.

In Iggy’s case, that is straight up no bones about it violation. Whether she was a minor or consenting does not take away from the fact that someone wants to take that tape and make money. In the past, this tactic worked wonders for Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian, launching their ‘careers’ in the face of public embarrassment but for every ‘success story’ there are millions of women digitally exploited around the world for the sake of entertainment. There are women who’ve had their privacy revoked by partners and people who claim to have their best interests at heart and ultimately stab them in the back by revealing the photos or videos. It’s not just the dissemination of illegally obtained photos and videos, think about the millions of children that could be in that traffic flow. If hackers can get into your phone and snag your naughty bits, what do you think could be happening to the pictures of kids? If it takes something as large scale as The Fappening to spark the government into truly investigating these cases of theft, then so be it. We can be accountable for ourselves and responsible with our technology but like anything, there are people who truly are up to no good and only want to unearth the things that we want buried or that aren’t meant for anyone else.

We complained about how a U2 album landed on our iTunes last week, we should be complaining about how people want to make money from private moments and stop saying it’s her fault.

 

I’m gonna live under a rock.

 

I Listened to U2’s Songs of Innocence Cos It Was Free

So September 9th brought us the new iPhone 6 and the release of the album we didn’t know was coming straight to our iPhones.

In the grand tradition of surprise album releases, the lads launched their 13th studio album on iTunes and into the purchase folders of unsuspecting iTunes users. After checking my charges to make sure I hadn’t been bamboozled and struggling to understand how the hell I could even download it to my laptop (I live in understandable fear of The Cloud) I listened to the album.

You guys remember U2 right?

 

srsly tho, lol whut?

1) The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)

We’ve started with football chanting and fuzzy The Edge guitar far more nuanced than The Ramones.

I was young not dumb just wishing to be blinded

by you brand new we were pilgrims on our way.

Oh this is the song they’re using as part of the promo for new iTunes. Got it.

Bono is implying that they’re old enough to have witnessed the birth of Joey Ramone but I think they were about the same age.

Is it possible to outgrow a band that’s older than you are? Feels like that’s what happening.

2)Every Breaking Wave

Sounds a lot like With or Without You, which isn’t bad but makes me curious about what chords the guys remember playing after 30 years. If you go your way, and I go mine, are we so are we so helpless against the tide? 

 Did Ryan Tedder get involved in this album because it sounds a lot like One Republic.

Ironically enough, I’ve always thought they’ve done better with ballads with epic tracks buried between, sorta like Coldplay.

3) California (There Is No End To Love)

Bells tolling.

Echoy vocoder and we’re chanting Santa Barbara.

Definitely a radio friendly track that plays while your dentist drills mercilessly into your jaw because you let a cavity become a sinkhole.

As a native New Yorker, songs about California make me wonder what New York has done to people that they just don’t write jaunty melodies about how much fun it is to be here. Maybe it just makes people bitter or something.

4) Song for Someone

I take it back, this is the one that sounds more like With or Without You.

was told I would feel nothing the first time. 

This is that dramatic montage music for a romcom…or at the very least use in an upcoming episode of Grey’s Anatomy.

They still have the ability to write some damn anthemic tracks though.

5) Iris (Hold Me Close)

Here we have U2 in all their jangly guitar glory ala Streets Have No Name.

This actually sounds a lot like the early 2000s dance rock bands that were crawling out of the New York woodwork.

The universe is beautiful but cold

New Facebook status.

6) Volcano 

This is only an 11 song album and I’m struggling to care about it.

I’m more engaged with how violator Apple was by ‘gifting’ Apple users with this album. Turns out, they paid $100 million to unload the badboy on everyone. Talk about volcano.

Vol-ca-no

you don’t wanna know

something in you about to blow

I can hear Danger Mouse’s production touches on this somehow. Also because Danger Mouse is wicked talented.

7) Raised by Wolves

Heavy breathing robot.

Bono sounds bored by his own lyrics and vocal delivery.

This actually sounds like the song that rolls at the end of a war documentary, so, you know, a typical U2 song that makes you feel bad for being a first worlder.

This is definitely the ‘war is terrible, politicians are terrible, we should do something about it but first lemme write this anthem’ song that pops up on a U2 album as of late.

it also ends hella abruptly.

8) Cedarwood Road 

Almost had me with a classic 90s BritWave drum loop but we’re actually rehashing Hold Me Thrill Me Kiss Me Kill Me.

One of the things that’s interesting about this band is you’ve never really gotten to know them on a personal level, they’re just so big and this feels like one of those songs that’s supposed to sound personal but it’s just too big to be a simple story.

9) Sleep Like A Baby Tonight

Wake up synth loop anyone?

This is their Discotheque/Sweet Dreams tribute track.

Your eyes as red as Christmas (?)

Again, Bono just sounds like they’re playing around in the studio and he’s bored by the process.

I’m sleeping with this song though. Like, it’s building to something but I’m not sticking around to see what it looks like.

10) This Is Where You Can Reach Me Now

Electric tribal drums, harpsichord and seagulls.

We’re chanting now.

This is a revamped track from Joshua Tree, I can feel it.

Vocals are like, Tears for Fears Shout, which doesn’t sound bad. Guitar riff is She Moves In Mysterious Ways.

I may be annoyed with bands rehashing themselves though.

11) The Troubles

OMG THE FEMALE VOCAL SOUNDS LIKE LYKKI LI AND ALL MY FEELS JUST GOT BUNCHED UP.

This may be the one sound that the band should’ve spent more time trying to cultivate a bit. Downtempo, reverb vocals and guitar.

I can live with denial but you’re not my trouble anymore

Facebook status #2.

On a whole, the album isn’t terrible, the band doesn’t seem to be showing their age and once they hit the road, the hits will start sticking. Maybe thematically they’re running into the same things that made them one of planet Earth’s biggest band, living with or without someone, visiting streets with no names, war is terrible themes always wrap around the band’s lyrics like the shades on Bono’s face. The album isn’t bad, it’s middle of the road music that feels grand because of the spectacle surrounding it’s release but to be honest, Bono and the guys have done much better work with less at stake. It was an interesting listen to say the least but the waves are being felt and time will tell if this is the next wave for music. There are points on the album where  I can see why so many people were like, why is this on my phone and how can I get rid of it? Especially when it comes to the obvious privacy violation on Apple’s part with immediately adding the album to users phones but is that really the issue?

Part of the problem  is that they aren’t the first band you think of when you think of. We’re conditioned to artists who gladly give you free stuff because we like them, they’re popular, it doesn’t feel out of character for them to do it. Whether it’s One Direction’s 24 first single download via their Vevo account, Katy Perry adding karaoke versions of her songs to her site or mix tapes, we like when our artists look out for us and reward us in kind for our patronage. Beyonce lovingly released her self titled via iTunes and with it a bunch of content that her fans eagerly paid for, even with the digital download available and the physical copy weeks away from release. She managed to tap into the consciousness of her fans in a way that made them feel like this was what they wanted; they needed Partition on their phones and computers immediately.

No one wants an album immediately added to their phones without their consent and that’s why everyone’s so mad.

That and the price tags for the new iPhone 6.

REALLY APPLE?!

Many astute iPhone users noticed the album on their phones on September 9th and immediately took to social media to let Apple know they didn’t want this on their phones and sharing tips on how they could get rid of the album immediately. Insane when you think how the band, brand ambassadors since 2003, received an undisclosed blanket deal ($100 million US) to cover the cost of the promotion and free sale of the album to users. Apple tried giving people stuff they knew they weren’t going to really want and then said, nah that’s cool, that’s all you, keep that while closing the door in your face. Is the gamble going to pay off? Perhaps for diehard fans this was really the thing they’d been waiting for and maybe out of curiosity, people will check it out before grumbling and wanting it the hell of of their devices.

Here’s the thing, we’re always wanting free shit and new shit and here is free new shit but nobody wants it. Maybe it speaks to my freeloader, downloading nature but I don’t mind something free every so often. I don’t even use my phone for music, I have an iPod classic to do that because I like to have a phone I can use to call someone to complain about how my iPod classic locked up on me and I’ll be damned if someone forces me to use my phone as a music player. That’s just how I roll.

Remember: the reason why Apple was able to do this was because you didn’t read the Terms of Agreement.

 

Oh and while you were complaining about this, the iPod classic was quietly laid to rest today.

I Listened to “Trigga” Because You Didn’t Tell Me It Was Out

While Usher was sitting in a spin chair on The Voice, he left the lane wide open for other sexy men to infiltrate the musical bedrooms of young ladies. In that time we had Jason Derulo try to get us to “Talk Dirty” (curses, that sax hook is stuck in my head now) and never to be outdone Mr. Steal Your Girl, Trey Songz made us want to work out more with “Nana.” While Usher spends time reminding you why he is really that good, Trigga was released this week so he can bask in the juicy that is dirty sex and booze.

You didn’t tell me.

Now I’m going to listen to it.

Italics are lyrics.

Track 1 Cake

There are not enough songs about booty in the world.

Trap trap trap beats.

:30 I’m taken but I want you

: 48 You can’t have cake and eat it too

but aint that what you supposed to do? 

Cake’s on the menu. 

This song is about Cake. NOTHING ELSE. Trey obviously loves pastries.

Track 2 Foreign

We’re going on a sex adventure with Trey.

Colombia, France, Australia…

This is already better than Talk Dirty only because while naming it manages to convince you that other girls from other countries are hot, there is no sax loop to drive you insane and subsequently have your  parents dance. Passports are important.

You know I had to cop that foreign.

Track 3 Na Na

This song was designed to blow out speakers and probably backs.

I think I already did and I’m alone at home.

ayyeee.

Three tracks in and I think the goal is to have already gotten clothes off.

Track 4 Touchin, Lovin feat Nicki Minaj

Reunited with Nicki and the pre-chorus is a nod to R.Kelly/ Biggie’s Fuckin You Tonight.

The dirty old bitch that I am finds that endearing.

This is the ‘we’re in our underwear’ portion of the album.

IT IS ONLY TRACK 4.

2:40 Nicki bringing the fire, call 911. Lyrically, she’s just been impeccable since dropping that lame persona she picked up from Gaga.

Track 5 Disrespectful ft Mila J

Alright, we’re on a storytelling tip right now. Picture both of you cheating and neither of you caring about your significant other because HE’S WEARING YOUR MAN’S SLIPPERS BUT TRIGGA DON’T CARE.

ugh.

This song is terrible with how real it is because there are people who really don’t give two shits about the side piece wearing the main piece’s things.

Also real catchy.

Track 6 Dead Wrong feat Ty Dolla $ign

All of these songs about hoes and clubs being disrespectful. Who hurt you Trey?

But the hoes gonna do what they want

Trey’s done a fantastic job of know where his strengths are and the production so far has really been complimentary to that ‘pre club, pre game’ crowd. Features have been solid so far.

Also, this is the hickey portion of the sexing theoretically happening to this album.

Track 7 All We Do

Welcome to the creep part of the album. Elastic snaps, slow delivery high snap snares. This is basically a slow mo video.

1:20 All we do is fuck drink and sleep.

I’m clearly in the wrong line of work.

Actually shocked that the bestie Drake isn’t on this track, this literally all he talks about.

All we do is let the hook repeat too often tho.

Track 8 Foreign Remix feat Justin Bieber

I want to skip this so badly…

:30 Dominican Puerto Rican yea they do it for me. *justin beieber

I WANT TO LIGHT MYSELF ON FIRE.

couldn’t do it. Gotta skip and the features were really good right until this happened. JESUS BE ANTI BACTERIAL GEL.

Track 9 Late Night feat Juicy J

Mike Will Made It production.

We’re telling time with more trap music and late night booty calls, which are the only ones anyone is interested in. If you’re calling for brunch sex, please ask elsewhere. Like the girlfriend you’re cheating on with the late night jump off.

At this point you’ve probably chilled a bit and are getting snacks but run back because Juicy J is on.

2:30 SHE RATCHET DIRTY DIANA. 

Juicy J has been incredible with the pop culture references. People have actually had to explain the Jeffery Dahmer line in Dark Horse.

Track 10 SmartPhones

Starts with the buzz from a phone on a flat surface that makes you look for your own phone to make sure it’s not the bae…because you’re out cheating remember?

This is the track that makes you remember that cheating and drinking is bad so you want to say sorry and you find the right words using a Trey Songz song vs a say…Robin Thicke. You also will leave the lyrics to this on a FB status.

1:45 So if she heard it all. I’m all out of love tonight. I could say it was a joke but who am I kidding she ain’t slow.

He’s giving me Usher circa “Confessions” feelings right now.

Now I’m gonna say whatever it takes.

time is not on our side cause she’s waving goodbye goodbye

Smartphones dumb shit

Track 11 Yes, No Maybe

We’ve hit the part of the album where all that Mr Steal Your Girl’ing has gotten you caught in the feels and she’s going out and doing all that Ms. Steal Your Man thing that hoes do.

This is the song that’s about the fact that fidelity is difficult and people let each other be hoes while they hope they can get it out of their system just so they can get married but we all know the old saying, can’t make a ho a housewife but good luck with that

Dragged on too long.

Track 12 Y.A.S

Slow piano over trap snare.

:49 Guess I got used to hearing whatever I wanted to hear

Guess I got used to feeling like you were supposed to give it here

She ain’t got nothing good to say so she ain’t saying nothin.

Lot of dudes not listening to their ladies.

Y.A.S is an acronym for You Aint Shit.

THIS IS GENIUS.

This is the dress down track because she’s found the dude that’s actually not Trey (it’s actually Usher) and he’s much better. The butthurt sincerity is real and the track has taken a hilarious dramatic piano jab and it’s bordering into R.Kelly storytelling theatrics.

Track 13 Change Your Mind

The cute pop track that gets buried at the bottom of these albums because you don’t want to be THAT soft dude but the lady has to know you cuddle and wear matching Snuggies while watching Netflix. It’s 90s pop snap that someone young would’ve done to break into the scene.

Change my mind Trey, g’head

 

Track 14 What’s Best For You

The break up song.

Always buried at the end of the album after all the hoe-ing is done. There’s a sincerity in his delivery that really makes him stand out vocally. Again, another vintage sounding track with well produced layering and approach that kinda makes up for all the drinking we just did.

In case you’re keeping score, this is the part where the making out has stopped and you’re kinda in that cuddle mode.

Track 15 Love Around The World

We’re back to finding all the girls we met in the “Foreign” track because the passport is missing and can’t get back to the bae without it so we have to treat this like the Hangover and retrace our steps with makin love with all the ladies in the cities we’ve been and dig around the couch cushions for that passport.

I’ve made LOoooooove all around the world.

Pitbull better watch his back…Mr. Steal Your Girl might be Mr. Worldwide.

Track 16 I Know (Can’t Get It Back)

Violins and synths…this should be good.

:20 I never had time for you

This is why you went on your international plow festival?!

1:00 I’ve been living my life in these clubs

but but…you made me change my mind!!

These hoes ain’t loyal.

The violin loop is just the most right now.

Track 17 Mr. Steal Your Girl

We’ve reached the sensual part of the album where now we’ve learned that he’s not going to get back with the other girl so here we are about to do some nekkid stuffs because let’s face it, all that’s why  pressed play on this album. KAY?

I’m glad we got to that point.

1:50 Let your man know that Mr. Steal Your Girl is back

I didn’t doubt it.

Overall, Trigga is one of those albums that you know Songz goes into the studio intending to deliver the goods…musically, boning is optional. It’s the album you listen to when you’re feeling a type of way (horny) and it may not hold up for overall listening a year from now simply because the material is almost a retread of his older work. Vocally he’s in his element and production wise he definitely succeeds in challenging the new school or urban r&b hierarchy since the seat seems to be vacated. A few tracks drag but they’re more for the DJs who will definitely use these tracks in the club…

I Listened to “Paula” Because You Didn’t Want To

A lot of things have been said about Robin Thicke lately.

They’re hilarious.

In the same way Macklemore makes people cringe, Robin Thicke seems to not quite fit into the world that they so obviously love. In Thicke’s case, he’s been boxed into a strange category that makes him too old for the Justin Timberlake crowd and too creepy for the neo-soul group. Both have managed to make everyone severely uncomfortable with how comfortable they are with totally repackaging and redistributing African American culture in safe white packaging. Perhaps it’s because “Blurred Lines” was the most overplayed, most over interpreted song of summer 2013, people have basically decided that they’ve given up on Robin and it seems like his estranged wife Paula Patton has done the same thing which brings us to the point of this; Robin Thicke’s latest Paula.

The apology tour started in May of 2014 where, clad in jeans and a t-shirt, the Bizarro Justin Timberlake took to the stage and sang his Remy Martin drunk heart out with the lead single “Get Her Back” Drunken tears in his eyes, he set out to well, get her back. It was a spectacle. Twitter erupted in a frenzy as we all asked the same thing: “What the hell is going on?!” It was almost too easy to make fun of him and because the internet is like that, they did and it was also hilarious. It seemed like he was a one hit wonder who was milking his fifteen minutes with a random sob story about his wife leaving him at the ‘height of his career’. Please don’t forget that he had two other hits from previous albums, so essentially he’s one of those guys who gets a great lead single but struggles to follow up so he’s pretty much like a boyfriend you have in your 20s who promises you some things but as they deliver they forget the other stuff.

It’s been tough being Robin Thicke.

Mostly because of the name but…

Let’s listen to Paula.

Italics are lyrics.

Track 1: You’re My Fantasy

This automatically gives ‘I listened to a Sade song with spanish guitars, lets go with that’ Touch me your my fantasy…He’s talking about reincarnation we were lovers in a previous life.

The hook Please x8 Touch me you’re my fantasy BRUH. WHERE IS YOUR CHILL. There’s way too much thirst on this track already and I kinda feel uncomfortable because he’s spent all this time whispered most of the hook into the mic really close and I can spell the Henny, er Remy Martin on his breath. Now he’s talking about hearing her giggle down the hall. Get a priest.

2:44 this song is already too many lyrics too long.

4:10 Can’t get too much of you I’ll never make it without you We’re connecting the early creep part with begging and audio from what sounds like a dinner party where I’m guessing he’s being weird and staring at Paula, uh, the woman who’s his fantasy while she’s busy doing other things…like avoiding him.

5:20 we’re repeating the hook, pre hook and extended musical break.

Track 2: Get Her Back

The bouncier track so far. He’s got Motown harmony on this and a loose guitar riff but again, he’s leaning too heavy into that mic again and the Remy is really distracting. He’s listing all the things he has to remind herself of, like when you go shopping and keep reminding yourself of the eggs milk and bread you need. I shouldn’t never raised my voice ?! Bruh.

It’s a stripped down list of things that he wants to do. Play you that song you and your girlfriends wanna sing sooooo someone else’s track right?

Track 3: Still Madly Crazy

He’s channeled John Legend for this song, raspy voiced and piano backing. It gives Lost Without You vibes…which oddly enough became a wedding anthem back in 2004. Im sorry you had to suffer my lack of control you’d think by now I would’ve grown. It sounds more like Paula errrr his fantasy put up with a lot of shit. I’m trying to find the pity.

Track 4: Lock The Door

We’ve got creepy choir going…we’re going to sex church apparently.

sha nah nah nah nah

He’s continuing raspy piano delivery and I think the knocking is actually John Legend asking dude to get the fuck off his piano.

I kept trying to tell you you kept pushing me too far

i kept trying to warning you you were slowly breaking my heart

Kept giving you all of me but you kept taking too much

I dunno what this is but this ain’t love.

The lady choir is playing Paula…ehhhhh….fantasy woman so the hook is basically an argument and he keeps knocking for her to let him in because…she’s locked the door.

3:12 Reenforced locked door.

3:30 still dragging on about her and the locked door, no porch lights..sure she even still lives there?

4:00 Open the doggie door throw a dog a juicy bone. 

Track 5 Whatever I Want

Group start of Awwwwwwwww into a bouncy guitar bass line that sounds kinda like what you’d expect at a creepy swinger party.

The Little Shop girls are back.

I can do whatever I want

(finally)

I can do whatever I want

(freedom)

Wait, you wanted back in the house the track before. What’s going on here?

2:20 the chant clap portion of our already still too long song

You usually list the things you are going to do since you can do whatever you want…like…find a producer who’ll craft songs for you a little neater than this stream of consciousness musical arrangement you’ve dedicated to your wife.

Track 6 Living In New York City

Trying too hard to be funky with a 70s soul bassline

:10 he just yelled black daddy.

:15 I said black daddy.

yeap. he did.

Me you NY why not?

Very Prince if Prince decided to be the front man for Morris Day and the Time and give them his weakest material because BLOUSES.

1:30 I said black daddy

This is the song you have in the background when you’re listening to Spotify while waiting for the DJ to show up so you shazaam it and you kinda double take because it wasn’t bad but you’re now embarrassed because of WHO it is.

2:44 I gotta testify. GOOD GAWD. 

Track 7: Love Can Grow Back

Brassy bluesy 4 am smokey Jazz club…alright we’re getting somewhere.

:22 You’re way too young to dance like that in front of man like me baby. 

and it’s awkward.

1:19 Show me our love can grow back with your new nails on my back. 

Robin built a time machine and is lusting mightily for Jessica Rabbit…I’m not mad I’m just saying that this was about Paula..but that’s none of my business…

Track 8 Black Tar Cloud

Probably the beatier meatier track on this already bloated album but the beat reminds of a far better produced Kanye beat.

:40 you tryna hit me with my favorite golf club

:55 You took 20 pills 

this is either the Tiger Woods story or the plot to some crazy Lifetime movie with Valerie Bertinelli.

This track actually manages to sonically be about a few different things at the same time which is what you need if you want album to hold up six minutes after it’s been released.

Track 9 Too Little Too Late

It’s 1997 in Robin’s head.

Way elastic beat that feels like it’s a demo for a boy band. The Ladies are back.

1:15 and I already want this song over.

2:00 listing the things he should’ve done again. feeding and pleasing being the top things.

Track 10 Tippy Toes

Another big bass track.

Dancing on her toes 

Dancing on her tippy tippy toes. 

I’m creeped out.

This is has to be a rejected track from Hairspray.

1:50 She can twerk but she’d rather dip bounce and bust.

2:00 This song is way too long

Track 11 Something Bad

I can smell the Remy…

:00 Theres something bad in me

THIS SONG HAS CORNY SYTHS RIFFS IN IT.

He’s going for the True Blood theme but it sounds like the music you play in a techno futuristic strip club where you pay them to put their clothes back on because the music is so terrible and you feel terrible.

1:40 little birdy flew in the window took a picture and flew out with a dirty tweet 

the buh buh buh baddd stutter…

THIS DIDN’T HAVE TO HAPPEN, THESE GIRLS DESERVE BETTER

Track 12 The Opposite of Me

We’re at a mid-tempo top 40 Lite FM song where we learn what she actually wants and it turns out, surprise, it’s not actually him.

All that she needs is a good man All she needs is another try All that she needs is something that I can’t give her.

All that she wants is the honesty

All that she wants is the opposite of me. 

All that she wants is someone that doesn’t hurt

All that she wants is the action not the words. 

2:00 I just rewarded her with my drunken rants.

Still too long.

This song is just like Blur’s She Fucking Hates Me. Go listen to that instead.

Track 13 Time of Your Life

Bryan Setzer called, he said please don’t try to bring big band swing back.

Michael Buble probably would’ve knocked this song out of the park because it’s Michael Buble and he’s adorable as hell.

1:22 This album is a fucking struggle to listen to.

Track 14 Forever Love

The second single from the album pretty much is trying to snatch the schmalz crown from the King John Legend. Again. raspy voice and piano.

:49 I’ll be there biggin you up. 

This has to be taken from the diary of a 15 year old.

This may be the most vulnerable track on the album. Considering how many confessional lines that were left in different parts of this incoherent album that may not be a good thing.

THANK GOD IT’S THE END.

This should’ve been a concept record where the label said YOU CANNOT BE A CREEP AND NAME IT AFTER YOUR WIFE or an EP where he just let it out there and saw what happened while privately working on fixing the whole thing, like a normal person. Make a mixtape, send it to the not bae and work on fixing yourself. It’s easy to blast him for releasing this album immediately after his latest because it’s not like the streets were clamoring for the follow up but it’s also a little heartbreaking to know that this is the best way to get attention for something that so obviously bothers him. This doesn’t seem like the first time the two of them have had a blow out, the previously mentioned “Lost Without You” was dedicated to her when they broke up the last time. The thing that’s interesting about this album is that it doesn’t seem to have an real producer attached to it to give it shape and mold it into an actual album worth listening to; it feels very much cobbled together from discarded tracks that didn’t make previous albums and iron was hot, so strike it.

I’m currently in the making friends again after being estranged part of my relationship and it is NOT EASY but we both had to walk away and evaluate things. Yes, there is bad poetry and poor choices (hair cuts and dye jobs) but those things are done privately where when you wake up you can say, “Jesus Tap Dancing Christ, I am NOT the right completion for blonde” and have not bae tell you they already knew that…and then you start talking.

There have been far more superior break up albums released this year, two from across the pond by Coldplay (Ghost Stories) and Sam Smith (In The Lonely Hour) that dive deep into the deep sea that is break up misery and probably dozens more that effectively convey that sense of loss this album is trying to capture. Paula seems like he just looked through some of his notebooks for some of the most cliche things to sing about while chugging all of the finest top shelf booze he had access too.

Everyone can do better.