Well, hons, I probably wouldn’t *squeeee* over you, or get happy for you when you’re given flowers, but, yeah. I’d be nice to you. I’m generally nice to everybody. Unless you piss me off. Or you’re stupid. Yeah, I generally have no patience for stupidity. But…oh, and if you talk to my chest, I tend to get rather snippy…but, really, other than that. Yeah. So, to answer your question, yes. I would be nice to you. Can we move along now?
First, guys, explain the “cheese” to me. I’ve heard through the grapevine that it means “money.” Really? Do people say this with a straight face, or did someone put it in a song as a joke, just to see if anyone else would follow suit? That’s my bet. Because, really, cheese? Unless it’s a shout-out to me and my obsession with all things fromage, I just don’t get it. And yes, I’d still be nice to you if you didn’t have fromage every day. I don’t need it, I just like it.
This is – for those of you confused, including me – my review of Celebrity. Please be prepared for a bit of disjointedness, a few random segues, and a bit of something resembling critiquing. Also, go into this with the understanding that I am writing under the influence of migraine medication and English Breakfast Tea. Two great influences that go great together.
Oh, and let’s not forget the hot chocolate I just downed. You have been warned. Shall we continue?
I could do this in order, but that would require having the CD in front of me, and that would actually be in my car. So we’ll do it by memory. Which should be more fun, right? First, generally speaking, I adore this CD. Better than NSA, due to the lack of vomit-inducing ballads. I love The Boys, I do. But really, the ballads, for the most part, should be left to their dour counterparts. I think you know who I mean. Not that I don’t like their ballads, I just don’t want them on a CD I plan on listening to repeatedly. It fucks with my bouncing.
Now, for the nitty gritty. Answering those tough questions: Did they take it to the next level? Do they even fucking know where the next level is? How many times, exactly, can you listen to this CD in a row? Well, to start off with, it’s been in my car since maybe before it came out, and it hasn’t left. I haven’t counted how many times it’s been run through, but let’s just say it’s been in there over a month and I haven’t had the radio on since. Not even to listen to traffic. Those bitches always get it wrong anyway. “520’s clear” my ass.
As I’m unsure what the next level entails, I’ll just critique it from my level. Starting with my favorite: “Up Against the Wall.” There is something inherently wrong with this song, which is probably why I like it. I love that they are just sort of putting out there that yes, they’ll fuck with you, but don’t expect anything else. They don’t care at all. And it’s good to hear them being up front about it. Yes indeed. I also love the chant, and may perhaps go at it whole-heartedly when in the car. The Boys, it must be noted, do not. They sound almost bored. But I choose to believe that that is their “artistry” shining through. Y’know, they’re bored. They don’t care. The freaks sure do come out at night. Get it? Plus – and there are very, very few songs that inspire me to this level of idiocy – I totally want to karaoke this song in a room full of drunken strangers.
Rating: Two snaps and a twist, with a side of “Stop looking at me, I can do whatever the hell I want in my own car.”
“Selfish”: I know that I have said many times that The Boys’ ballads make me want to scream and twitch on the floor, but for some reason I have a soft spot for most of them on this album. I must be mellowing in my not-so-old age. What a terrifying thought. A true sign of this song’s potential staying power and, dare I say, understated beauty, is that after the 100th listen, my right eye no longer involuntarily twitched, nor did I find myself screaming “What the fuck? Unperfect? Why, JC, WHY?” I mean, I’m still bitter about it. But I’m working on it. Because, it seems, as time goes on, I become more of a sap. And I like to sing this song really, really loudly.
Rating: Two snaps and a circle. I’m sorry, but it’s too unperfect for a twist.
“Just Don’t Tell Me That”: I like it! I really like it! I think a lot of it has to do with the use of “may” in place of “me.” Which, really, probably has a lot to do with my love of this album. “May” is simply more rampant than “cheese” here. I’m a fan of Angry!Sync. Who knew?
Rating: Two snaps and a twist! Yes, we have a twist!
“Celebrity”: Undecided. This song has had to grow on me. I like the stylings. I like the chant at the beginning enjoyment value possibly enhanced due to online fan horror at Wade doing the chanting, rather than Lance and the way the music breaks out to Justin. It’s well done. And, you know, Bitter!Sync. Not as fun as Angry!Sync, but still a hell of a lot more fun than Earnest!Sync. See: TIPY from NSA I’m not completely sold on it, but like I said, the vocals are good. The lyrics are, for the most part, passable. And I enjoy the giggle fit that commences every time they bring up the fact that they have cheese every day. I like cheese. Oh, and the chorus isn’t bad either.
Rating: One and a half snaps, with the potential for a twist. Maybe after a few more listens.
“See Right Through You”: I have a friend that loves this song for the line “…about to get pissed off” alone. And that’s a worthy reason. More Bitter!Angry!Sync. There is no wrong. I, personally, love it for the
Baby, tell me does he do it do it like I do
Baby tell me will he love you love you like I do
Now you’re whinin’
Cause you can’t believe that we are through
I don’t care ’cause I see right through you
I might, possibly, get all happy at this part and start bouncing and punching. Because it might just happen to remind me of a certain moment in “Digital Get Down” that I, um, have a great appreciation for. Yeah. It. Um. Might.
Rating: Two snaps and a twist, bay-bees.
“Gone”: Another ballad that I like. I cannot listen to Justin talk about it anymore, because he’s ruining it for me, but it’s nice. And beautiful – he fucked up, and he wants her back. And I love to sing it. The “si-tin’ here” in the second verse just *sniff* gets me *sniff* right here. Every time. Ye gods, I’m becoming a fucking sap. Shut up loki.
Rating: Two snaps and a respectful, sad, slow twist.
“Something Like You”: I understand that I am supposed to love and revere this song. It has Stevie Wonder on the harmonica! How can I not? Well, I don’t. I cannot forgive lyrics like
So many times, I thought I held it in my hands
But just like grains of sand
Love slipped through my fingers
So many nights, I asked the Lord above
Please, make me lucky enough
To find a love that lingers
Something keeps telling me
That you could be my answered prayer
You must be heaven sent I swear
I just can’t. But, then, ack! I get all conflicted. Because, generally, I hate this song. It is all that is wrong with *NSYNC’s many ill-conceived attempts at ballads. It’s a perfect example! But… Yeah, there’s this huge “but.” I’m in love with the chorus. Totally and completely in love with the way they sing
Something happens when you look at me,
I forget to speak
Something happens when you kiss my mouth
My knees get so weak
Unfortunately, it doesn’t last long enough and they immediately fuck it up with
Could it be true this is what God has meant for me
Cause baby I can’t believe
That something like you could happen to me
But, like, for those five seconds, I am in love with the song. In. Love. The rhythm, the way the words just stumble out of their mouths… *sigh* Beautiful. It just doesn’t last long enough. So I usually skip over it, but walk around humming that five-second refrain over and over. If only they could’ve captured the essence of that moment and infused the rest of the song with it… I might have considered swinging over to the Earnest!Sync side. *sigh* I just might have.
Rating: One very conflicted snap. Possibly a half of a snap. I don’t know! Five seconds! Five fucking seconds! *sigh*
“Pop”: If I totally and completely ignore the beatboxing tacked on at the end, What the fuck were they thinking? I truly adore this song. However, I love the live version much, much more. This probably has more to do with my issues with the bouncing and the “huh”-ing than the actual arrangements of the live versus the recorded but, man, if they had done the clapping and the “huh”-ing on the album version, I’m betting this single would’ve climbed the charts. It adds something that’s missing. Yes, they experiment with a whole bunch of cool sounds and nifty lyrics and total bonus points for the ice around Justin’s neck. But the album version is missing a vitality that is more than evident in the live version. I might have the mp3 of the MTV TRL performance during practice. I might listen to that at work and just sort of…smile.
Rating: (album version) Two snaps/(TRL version) Two snaps, a twist, and an enthusiastic “huh!”
“The Game is Over”: Dude, Pacman! When I first heard about this song, I’ll be honest, I totally thought JC and Jerome had made up, and the boy was back on the crack. But I love it. It’s up there with UATW! And TGWNBM! Which I haven’t gotten to yet. Next. I promise. I love the background sounds, and for some reason I really love Justin singing
Take it personal
Cause I did when you cheated on me
You may be beautiful
But there’s more that the eye can’t see
You’re so predictable
The way you calculate each move
Heads I win, tails you lose
Because you don’t have the right to choose
I know the whole “tails you lose” thing sticks in loki’s craw, but I dig it. I get it. Also, there’s the
Cause you tried to play both sides (both sides)
You got caught up in your lies (in your lies)
And now you’re running,
You’re running out of time (yeahhh)
and I can’t explain it, but for some reason this strikes me as classically influenced, and I like that. This may sound completely asinine in a review of a song that relies heavily on video game sounds, but it’s true. The swell at the end? I can hear violins playing it, counterbalanced by cellos. With maybe a little viola tossed in here and there, for texture.
Oh, leave me alone.
Rating: Two snaps and a twist
“That Girl Will Never Be Mine”: If you have the American release, stop looking for this song. It’s not on there. It’s on the overseas release and will be on the On the Line soundtrack. I can’t believe it didn’t make the American release; it totally should have gotten SLY’s undeserved place! But, noooooo, some brilliant person decided that it fit the theme of On the Line perfectly, which I find highly amusing. Let’s look at some of the lyrics, shall we?
ran into her briefly Note: for the longest time, I thought this was “ran into her beefy” while willa thought it was “ran into her repeat.” As in TV repeat. Don’t ask. Just enunciate, boys.
She didn’t want to see me
I was out of line
Who’s right who’s wrong this time?
I never thought that I was gonna lose my head
Call me insane
There’s got to be a way
How can I get next to her
Tell me how it’s gonna be done
Will I win or lose this one?
This song, for those of you not catching on yet, is about stalking. It is all about seeing a model or a popstar and deciding that they are your soulmate. Really. I’m pretty sure *NSYNC meant it tongue-in-cheek, but you just know that it’s going to backfire on them. “Eek, they know! They understand! They are my soulmate!” Good luck with that, guys. Now, musically, this song kicks ass. It’s bouncy and the chorus is a sing-along wet dream. But now, back to the matter at hand: This is perfect for Lance’s movie? He’s stalking a girl? Lance, hon, I know you want to be taken seriously, but is this really the right message to put out? And, while we’re on the subject, could you kick whoever’s ass made the trailer for the movie? Thanks.
Rating: Two snaps and one motherfucking enthusiastic twist. It’s catchy, yo.
“Girlfriend”: It’s quiet. And simple. And sweet. Not much to say about it. I burst out into
Ever since I saw your face
Nothing in my life has been the same
I walk around just saying your name
Without you, my world would end, yeah
uncontrollably every single time. It’s good for a bouncing breather. And for serenading your annoyed boyfriend in the car. Bonus points if you pinch his cheeks during the above refrain.
Rating: Two snaps.
“The Two of Us”: I fucking love this song. It’s bouncy, non-dramatic, and it just totally sneaks up on you. I hated the beginning when I first heard it, now I bounce in anticipation. Love. It. It’s sweet and innocent and carefree and, I’m sorry KD, but I absolutely refuse to believe it’s about a booty call.
Rating: Two snaps and a bouncy twist.
“Tell Me, Tell Me…Baby”: Can anyone explain to me why the “…baby” is necessary in the title? I can’t figure it out. Other than that, I like this song, mainly for two reasons: One, the beginning kicks ass. Two, I am totally and completely with loki in her belief that this song was cobbled together out of fan letters from 12-year-old girls. Let us look, for example, at the opening verse:
We were born the same day (Every Bop reader’s dream)
We even think the same way (Oh my god Justin, I love baby blue too!)
It couldn’t be more right
We are what they call a perfect match (ecrush SAYS so!)
It’s something that you can’t touch
Down to the last bone, you’re my baby (He will be mine! Britney be damned! She’s not right for him! He will see that one day!)
And it continues with the chorus:
But to be honest
There’s just one thing
A part that is missing
You don’t seem to care at all
Tell me, tell me…baby
How come you don’t wanna love me
Don’t you know that I can’t breathe, without you
Tell me, tell me, just how
What am I supposed to do right now
Why can’t you love me?
Why-y, tell me, my baby (Yes, a common problem and quandary for all 12-year olds)
It speaks for itself, yes? We are proud of The Boys, though. It’s good to see them continuing their proud stalker heritage. NSA was rife with it, and we were a little worried that most of the songs on this album seem to be Angry!Sync, rather than Stalker!Sync. So a song like this is a welcome reminder of why we first fell in love with these deviants, and is very much embraced by our warped sensibilities.
Ratings: Two snaps and a restraining order-infused twist!
“Do Your Thing”: This is the one song on the album that I skip almost every time. Props to The Boys for trying something new in the vocals department, and I wish I could be more chipper about it – lord knows I like to be supportive, but it just rubs me the wrong way. Perhaps it is the feel-good, “get off your lazy ass and make your dreams come true” message, perhaps it is that the music feels dated and antiquated after the rest of the album, but I just can’t listen to it. Oh, I will every once in a while out of a sense of duty, don’t get me wrong, but it will never make it onto a mixed tape. And that’s the kiss of death, yo.
Rating: One snap. No twist.
“Falling”: Oh, how do I want to love this one? A lot. Really. But, um, do I? No, not really. It’s your standard bleeding-heart, love-at-first-sight ballad. I may be on the road to sapdom, but I’m not that far gone. The chorus makes me burst out into laughter, and the lyrics are almost as bad as SLYs. However, that being said, I love how JC sings his verse. Also the
I’ve been falling, falling
Will you stay or will you go?
Heaven knows what my future holds
Questions linger on my mind
Daybreak to dark of night
I don’t know what’s come over me
is extremely well done. So while I don’t love it, I’ll listen to it. At least it gave me more than five seconds of something to love. Oh, and once again, don’t look for it on your CD. It, too, was relegated to the OTL soundtrack and the European release.
Rating: One snap