Opshop’s song, One Day has to be a contender. Ew – this “expression of you” sentiment is cloying at best. At worst it’s hand-in-your-testicles, I-am-no-longer-a-man songwriting. To put it bluntly, it’s James Blunt - at his worst. There should be no way the members of Opshop can hold their head high after this song; it’s the negation of why they got into making music, surely? It’s an exercise in cliché, the opening line, “absence makes the heart grow fonder” is almost as offensive as the fact that it’s sung in some hybrid British/American accent, the lead singer sounding like he’s chewing marbles underwater. It’s an excuse for a song hiding behind a Hallmark greeting card sentiment in place of a chorus. It’s hideous. It’s sell-your-stereo stuff; as in if you even know someone who admits to actually liking this song you should sell your stereo to fund the terrorism operative necessary to remove them from the face of the earth.
Minuit, Aotearoa – I’m not sure if Ruth Carr speaks any form of English, let alone the Nu Zilan kind. I’m assuming she must, but you’d never know it from her songs. This hideous song-as-advertisement is, I would posit, borderline racist, given its titled Aotearoa and yet we never hear that word the whole way through the song. We just hear the words “New Zealand” and then whatever language it is Carr sings for the rest of the song. It loosely translates as: “iz ewe an eye, eye, eye, eye, in Nu Zilan!” You’d have to presume that Icebreaker gave them a bunch of money before they hit the studio. I say Icebreaker – I basically mean any brand at all. As is the way here. Could there be a more cloying, desperate song – so obviously wishing to identify and fulfil an experience that apparently equates with being a New Zealander and/or being in New Zealand? Remember – for the purposes of funding, New Zealand is spelt best when it’s best spelt: A-O-T-E-A-R-O-A.
Blindspott, Phlex – oh where to begin when discussing how god-awful this song is? Well, we could start with the cod-reggae groove. We should probably point out that a nu-metal band indulged its pot-smoking audience with this attempt at cod-reggae. How about the lyrical clichés? “Not one day/that you are here/has been promised to you”. Thanks! Someone has had the knives on. What a joke. What a hideous sound this is – and coming from a band that also sang, “fuck you and all your negativity” does that mean we can blame Blindspott for essentially teaching a bunch of blog-readers to go out and write “haterz gonna H8”? This band’s greatest hit was when they broke up; it caused me to hit my own head against the bed-post. I didn’t want it to just be a dream. I needed to wake up and smell the promise of a new day that had – you know – not been promised to me! And I needed to do that quick-smart. Oh happy day!
Lorde, Green Light – Diamonds have flesh. Cities have veins. And now rumours have big gnashing teeth. Cue 90s piano arranged by Serj Tankian. Time to take a taxi ride with Paul Henry. Fiesta! Better fuck the roof of the car. Awkward-dance down the street, out the car window, into the loo, back on the roof, awkward-dance everywhere. It’s an anthem. A goodamn anthem! The guy in the Herald says, after hearing it once, it’s better than Katy Perry. High Bar! Better even than Gaga. Cut to YouTube reaction video – because where (else) is the truth. And a guy, hearing it once, says it best, says it loud, says it proud, makes as much sense as he can: “She’s like that friend that you hang out with and you’re like, ‘I love you’.” And so that’s the big news today. Our little girl is all growsd up. The new song is the new song isn’t the same as the old song. It’s the best ever. Best in America. Best from New Zealand. It’s unbelievable. It’s great, really great, really a great, great song. It gets the green light. It gets to go. It’s the future of music – but you heard it today! What could possibly happen tomorrow with you and your new best friend?
But the worst song in New Zealand music that I have had to hear more than I would like is easily Tiki Taane’s Always on My Mind. An exercise in vacuity, Always on My Mind is a grass-roots chant that tells a lie to its audience. It’s lower than cod-reggae; it is a hamfisted skank of a tune. But it not only strikes the box of cloyingly sentimental lyrics, in a laughing-all-the-way-to-the-bank way, it actually tells a lie – it tells the audience that “you got me singing with some melody”. There is no melody to this one-note idea of a song. There is no melody. It then twists this for the sake of a rhyme – they do that all the time – and it suggests, “you got me singing with some harmony”. There is no harmony here either.
But at least you know where your NZ on Air money went…
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