Taio Cruz ft. Ke$ha - 'Dirty Picture'
Two things before we get into the cut and thrust of whether this is a good song or not a good song. One relevent, one...less so:
1: Ke$ha needs to release 'Dinosaur' as a single. She's already got people's backs up about whether she's a great new pop talent or a pretend drunkard with personal hygiene issues as it is, so it's not like she has anything to lose. And putting out a Daphne & Celeste sort of song has to be the best kind of "stuff you, grandad!" stunt since the invention of punk rock. She would gain everything and lose nothing. Unless it's not a hit, of course.
2: I've finally figured out what was bugging me about Katy Perry's 'I Kissed A Girl'. Y'know the bit where she sings "don't mean I'm IN love to-NIGHT", and the stresses fall in all the wrong places? That's so easy to fix. All she'd have to do is add an extra syllable, and sing "don't mean that I'M in LOVE to-NIGHT". You might not be able to get what I'm driving at from the text alone, but trust me, it works.
Now, where was I? Oh yes, Taio Cruz...
(Here's the video. Who else would like to see the outtake where Kesh puts her foot in the loo?)
Now the thing with this song is it's repetitive, it's dumb, it's silly and it's crude. None of which are bad things in themselves. Ever the craftsman, Taio has invested proceedings with a selection of little bits, each overlapping slightly, so there's a sense of forward motion as you, the listener, move from one to another.
It goes: pretty intro, doomy synth buildup, endless repetition of "won't you take a picture for me, won't you take a picture", slurpy synths, silly rap (him), slurpy rap (her) and then back to the doomy synth again. Repeat with moany noises.
Usually, I am FAR more likely to be distracted by something daft like this, something which wallows in its own filth, than something which attempts to say anything clever using stupid language. And the jarring clash between Taio's supersmooth soul-gentleman image and Ke$ha's sloppy drunken nonsense is genuinely fascinating. The song actually transforms from one kind of a thing to another, depending who has their hand on the microphone. Even if the music stays the same. It's amazing.
Trouble is, as a song, it kind of runs out of anything to say far too quickly. If you've got a chorus which is just one line repeated like that, you probably need to be a bit more sparing with it. Maybe use it to season your bassquake dance anthem, rather than attempting to make it the principal ingredient.
Ah well, at least it's not boring, eh?