“ARTPop” or ARTFlop

Emily Haase

Lady Gaga recently released her newest album ARTPOP, and it definitely does not meet expectations.

The album starts with the creepy opening line, “I killed my former and left her in the trunk on highway ten” with background music that makes one think of classic horror films such as Psycho. It certainly catches attention, but the rest of the track, titled Aura, is fairly bland.

A lot of the album has an odd mixture to it, sounding like the love child of pop icon Madonna and the electropop duo Blood on the Dance Floor (and if you’ve listened to BotDF, that isn’t a compliment), especially the title track.

ARTPOP falls pretty flat, and the sound doesn’t really make much sense. It definitely isn’t an attention-catching track, as the title track typically would be.

Swine is the same sort of thing, and continues with the pattern of boring, redundant “dance” songs. To be blunt, it sounds like something an angry high school girl who thinks she’s artistic wrote after a bad breakup.

Another big trademark of the album is it’s pretty shallow. It seems like Gaga’s going for her typical “shock factor”, but it isn’t really working.

Explicit track Sexxx Dreams sounds exactly like a track with that title can be expected to sound, and while shocking on the surface, it lacks any type of substance.

The song MANiCURE features lyrics like “put your hands all over my body parts”, and Do What U Want featuring R. Kelly states, “You can’t have my heart and you won’t use my mind, but do what you want with my body”. Again, shocking to someone with fragile ears, but pretty boring to a generation that watched Miley Cyrus swing naked on a wrecking ball and lick a sledgehammer.

However, despite the overall bland feel of the album, some of the album does sound like classic, catchy Lady Gaga. The track G.U.Y. had a familiar sound to it, and is reminiscent of her first hit single Just Dance from her first studio album The Fame, and the song Donatella has the same sound.

Donatella is a big high point for the album, and has a fun catchy beat while poking fun at stuck-up Hollywood starlets. It sounds refreshingly similar to Gaga’s mega-hit Paparazzi from 2009.

Dope is a beautiful, sad, heart breaking love song set to a haunting piano, and Gypsy starts out the same way but transitions into a more fun, poppy beat.

Then of course the hit single Applause was definitely the right track to end with, and though it might take a few listens, it’s impossible not to love this song.

However, even the high points couldn’t save this album. While she did sell a good number of records for today’s all-digital generation (roughly 250,000 copies), she ended up costing her label Interscope records $25 million, and will cause 50 to 100 layoffs in the company due to the album not coming anywhere near offsetting production and marketing costs.

So it’s apparent that the record didn’t do anywhere near as well as she expected it to, and may be her first big album flop.