Avril Lavigne - 'Girlfriend' - THE BIG DEBATE
Sometimes a song comes along which divides the nation neatly into two camps, people who love it and people who hate it. Such a song is Avril Lavigne's comeback anthem 'Girlfriend'.
So, rather than try and cover the full range of opinion with a wishy-washy review which attempts to see both sides and fails to truly engage with the debate, two reviews have been commissioned - one keen, one mean (or to put it into 'Avrilspeak', one for the r8-erz and one for the h8-erz). And none of that cute journalistic cack where people are forced to adopt an opinion just so they can write about it. These are REAL FEELINGS being aired, in all of their gory glory.
ONE FOR THE R8-ERZ
It's official - Avril Lavigne has seen the light, folks. Gone are all the pretensions of teenage angst and muso credibility (always a hotly-debated issue, that), and replacing them is full-on power pop sensibility. She has sold-in in the most extreme fashion possible. (Yes, sold in. You may say sell out, but that has negative connotations. I say sell in, because this is the smartest thing she's done in years.)
Imagine if Toni Basil's 'Mickey' had an evil twin. Got that? Good: you now know exactly what 'Girlfriend' sounds like: it's a cheerleader-dizzy, ridiculously catchy pop song that, instead of prettily pleading for a boy's attention, brashly demands that he dump that frumpy cow he's currently seeing and immediately pitch up with Avril instead.
Avril purists may pale (yes, even more than usual) at the sheer commerciality of the track (lest we forget, 'Sk8er Boi' was organically formed from potato mulch by Avril's own hands and made its way into the record stores through the power of good intentions alone, with no involvement from a marketing person or record company at any stage), but this is the most brilliantly brutal piece of spite-pop since the halcyon days of Daphne and Celeste.
And since the record-buying public completely failed to get the joke with those two, I implore you not to make the same mistake twice.
Released: April 2nd
ONE FOR THE H8-ERZ
Anyone who says Avril had no integrity in the first place is wrong. Let Go's introspective lyrics and her moody black eyes were the starting point for any emo worth their salt (even if they won't admit it today), and the songs had soul, albeit of the melodramatic, teenage variety.
She set the standard for any pop princess entering their "rawk chick" phase (looking at you, Kelly Clarkson), and whilst she might've been manufactured, her "don't mess with me" attitude made it quite clear that she wasn't wrapped around too many record exec's little fingers.
However, with this monstrosity of a song, Avril has disproved any credibility she might've once had - it has neither the lyrical sass of 'Complicated' nor the pop-punk fairytale goodness of 'Sk8er Boi'. For a 22-year old married woman to be dressed up like a 12-year old emo is bad enough, but when she's singing catty trash like "I don't like your girlfriend", no amount of "hey heys" is going to convince us that there's any kind of Ramones-esque credibility under this tosh.
Av's gone through some interesting image changes, from a baggy trousered teen to a chic young woman, then regressed back to a Primark 'punk', directly aimed at young teenage girls who aren't as picky as the 'Emous I'm-so-originalus' 16 year old.
Released: April 2nd
There. That should cover it...If you're only of the tiny minority of people who just think it's alright, your opinions will not have been represented here, sadly. Why not write your OWN review and send it in? Comments, please!