Thoughts on ARTPOP

Lady Gaga's ARTPOP is perhaps the most ambitious undertaking in her career. ARTPOP's pros and cons are the same: it's challenging. Art by nature can be (often) esoteric and idiosyncratic. It's multifaceted and sometimes convoluted, it is understood by few. Pop music on the other hand, is prevalent and inclusive. It goes down easy. So by challenging, I mean the concept of ARTPOP is contradictory. 

Art can elevate pop music but is pop music ready to rise to the occasion? Personally - although it's a widely shared opinion - I feel the current landscape of pop music has become stale and homogenized. You can blame the music industry(read: business of music)/piracy issues/whatever but the quality of music is just not the same. What I love about pop music is it unifies people with how we are the same but now - more often than not - this has translated to platitude. Like weather talk. 

For this reason, I respect Gaga because it's not just about the music, it's about the art. The work is thoughtful and the thoughts are complete; it makes you think. Whether you agree with them or not, you can't deny Gaga's work is effortful and artistic. Understandably so too because unlike most of her pop counterparts, she's not rudimentary. Gaga proposes new ideas; challenges the status quo; and questions the notion of pop music. 

For these reasons, I hope ARTPOP is a success because it benefits pop music. However, the response to the record could either be a) dismissive or b) make people stop and think. I hope it's the latter. Also, the record must have conviction and not just shock value. If Gaga delivers commercially and critically, it means the mass responds to substance and for an artist of her caliber, can rectify and impact the current state of pop music. 

Art doesn't go down easy and I hope that the world is willing to swallow.

photosource(edited): celebuzz

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