Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Pop Music: The Littlest Mormon and more.

So Fosco is doing this pop music thing this week (with only mild complaints from his commenters). It just so happens that the last two or three weeks have been a period of much pop music consumption for Fosco--one of those semi-annual periods where he decides to get back in touch with his inner brainwashed-music-consumer.

And what better way to get reacquainted with pop music than the American Idol double whammy? That's CDs by AI winner David Cook and runner-up David Archuleta, released within a week of each other in mid-November.

Now, Fosco has never watched much AI (that's really more the department of his boyfriend Oz). However, these two guys are pretty blockbuster and it would be silly not to give them a listen.

Let's start with David Cook. For those of you who never watched AI, he's the "rocker." You can tell because he has facial hair. His eponymous debut CD has lots of rockin' guitars and some pretty rockin' song titles (like "Bar-ba-sol"--that's rockin'). As music goes, it's pretty inoffensive. Actually, it's all strangely familiar, as every one of the songs mimics a previously released song by another band. When Fosco played his favorite track ("I Did It for You") for Oz, Oz noted that he liked the song better when it was called "Stop and Stare" and it was performed by One Republic. That pretty much illustrates the problem with David Cook. He's a copy--a pretty decent copy, but still a copy. He sings like he's auditioning to lead a Nickelback cover band and he looks like a pre-highlights Dominic Monaghan.

Fosco is much more interested in David Archuleta, the Littlest Mormon. Seriously, that boy is like 4'5". And he's just so darling. Like a little (gay, yet repressed) elf.

I wish I could say that David A.'s CD is the next big thing, but it's not. It's better than David C.'s disc and has a few catchy songs, but that's about it. The first single is infectious (trust Fosco and his insomnia) and the video raises all kinds of interesting questions about which boy David wants to go swimming with. But even so, the song isn't the right setting for the strength of his voice.

One of the most interesting questions about this CD is how Wee David manages his sexual persona. After all, he has a legion of tween fans (called Arch Angels) who are just starting to feel tingly in certain places. And I mean look at that kid: has there ever been a pop music star who is less sexualized (including Jordy)?

It turns out that David's awkward sexuality is what makes so much of his CD fun to listen to. Consider these lyrics from the song "Touch My Hand":

Saw you from a distance
Saw you from the stage
Something about the look in your eyes
Something about your beautiful face

In a sea of people
There is only you
I never knew what the song was about
But suddenly now I do

Try to reach out to you, touch my hand
Reach out as far as you can
Only me, only you, and the band

Up until that last line, it's just a typical song about a connection between singing David and the adoring tween fan in the crowd. But then what happens? Suddenly, things get creepy. Only me, only you, and the band. Why is band involved here? Is he proposing what I think he's proposing? Or is this some kind of weird reverse plural marriage?


todd said...

You mentioning Nickelback reminded me of something I've been meaning to post.

There's an ad on currently (Visa? MasterCard?) about a contest where the grand prize is going on a three city tour with Nickelback.

I looked it up: Second prize is a five city tour.

Anonymous said...

Even I, The Beemaster, your resident pop music illiterate, grew sick of Nickelback. LIKE FIVE YEARS AGO...

The Beemaster