Straight outta left field: I’m a No Doubt fan way back to their breakthrough Tragic Kingdom days, but my god is Gwen Stefani’s latest little solo effort horrifying. She has a fantastic voice and a very attractive midriff, both of which she has flaunted effortlessly for over a decade in ways the Spears and Lohan generation could only dream, but be damned if she can produce a decent song without her big brother around.
Don’t get me wrong, I have every suspicion that she is simply positioning herself as the girl-power poster child of the new millennium (hey, the Spice Girls are gone, right?) and, as such, has a responsibility to produce vacuous (though undeniably catchy) hip-hop–pop anthems, but it’s really a shame that this is the way she follows up a successful (and not nearly as deplorable) career fronting a ska/rock/pop band.
To be completely transparent, I must admit I’ve been listening to Hollaback Girl for the last week straight… and have almost succeeded in turning myself off of it completely. The video clip, too, is oddly addictive (see comment re: midriff, then multiply that by ass), though I doubt I’ll get sick of watching that so fast. On sampling the rest of what her solo debut has to offer I found it (surprise surprise) to be completely lacking. Hey, whaddya know, file sharing does lead to a decrease in record sales: consumers are forewarned of lousy records and know to avoid them.
This does not, sadly, guarantee I won’t listen again in a year and find myself tasting felt (ie– eating my hat), as has been the case with revisiting old Eminem and K’s Choice albums of late. Goddamn fickle ears.