Beyoncé & Lady GaGa - 'Video Phone'
Time for another special guest review from Kay Smith...
Let's be honest - Beyoncé's got a lot more competition nowadays, hasn't she? Before there was the other two girls, y'know, Kelly and whatsername... the other one, and Madame Knowles took centre stage, and her rare beauty, powerful voice (and father/manager) always ensured that she was the one everyone would be talking about.
Now Beyoncé's faced with fresher talent such as the edgy and beautiful Rihanna; the outrageous and daring Lady GaGa; and big, big voices like Leona Lewis and Jennifer Hudson. Yeah, she's always had some competition from other strong female singers / performers, or 'divas', if we must, but there are more of them around now.
Not that this is a bad thing, and nor am I saying that the hugely talented Beyoncé isn't good enough anymore. In fact, I think stars like Rihanna have made Beyoncé up her game a notch, followed by GaGa, who then stormed in and set the whole 'diva' thing on fire, before shaking up the ashes and chucking them into the wind, while giggling hysterically.
(Here's the video. See below for details)
Aesthetically, GaGa stole the show as soon as she arrived - the huge shoulders, the sharp metallic stage outfits...and set the standard for the rest of the diva patrol to follow, including Beyoncé herself (remember those hips in that dress?!). OK, we haven't seen her up on stage sporting anything questionable dangling between her legs just yet, but you never know, it could still happen .
So anyway, this brings me to 'Video Phone' - and what exactly is the point of GaGa featuring in this song? I know Beyoncé fans won't like me saying this, but I can't help but think that in this instance it's a case of 'if you can't beat em, join em'.
The song is pretty average if you're being nice about it, but it's repetitive and can come across as monotonous. If you haven't heard it and you want to know what it sounds like, imagine someone saying over and over again "watch me on your video phone, your video phone" and erm, well that's it, really.
GaGa's contribution is small, and her verse lacks the originality of her solo work. Generally, the lyrics are simple yet dripping with innuendo - backed up over a thinly-spread beat and a few orgasmic groans.
When Beyoncé has the right songs, competition is a good thing - her outfits have been braver and more exciting, her videos more dynamic - but as her 'I Am...' album runs out of obvious hit singles to release, the competition gets harder to beat, and you get the impression that she thought: "If the music isn't going to be enough this time, then why not make the lyrics sexy and just rope GaGa in herself?"
Oh, and the video... Rihanna's hairdo? Check. Crotch grabbing? Check. Sex moves? Check. Now I'm no prude (honest), but don't you think it all looks a bit... desperate? For someone as naturally brilliant as Beyoncé (and a better singer than GaGa and Rihanna put together), perhaps she should actually stop trying so hard and do what she does best - singing proper songs.