First off, Americans have too many hang ups about sexuality, if the barrage of Tweets concerning Beyoncee’s opening number is any indication of a moral barometer. Mesh body suits are too much for American children to watch at 8 P.M., good thing she didn’t get naked or it would have been worse for them than the fast food their parents had been feeding them earlier that day.
Secondly that the state of the music industry is pretty sad. Not based off who won, because that is really about major label payola, after all if you didn’t know who Lorde or Daft Punk were before last night , you sure do now.This equals larger sales numbers. The commercials also wanted you to know that target is the only place that still actually sells cds. The music represented last night is about as plastic as any thing you would by from Target’s clearance section.
This was attempted to be obscured by the performances , which outnumbered the actual awards given. The bulk of the performances features artists seated at pianos singing. While it does keep production costs down, allowing there to be only a handful of big budget circuses to run over the course of the show that was streamlined down to three hours, it also make them look like more serious musicians.
The problem here is the camera, never zoomed in on their hands at the ivories, because Lang Lang, was the only person who actually played, leaving the Taylor Swifts of the worlds to play air piano, while actually sitting at one. They did give their Maybelline endorsements props while staring at the camera rather than watching what they are supposed to be playing and striking poses.
The hip-hop element seemed toned down, sure Jay-z came out with his wife, then Knedrick Lamar and Imagine Dragons relived 90′s Nu metal, but really that was it , since Ryan Lewis and Macklemore , was more of a highly dramatized spoken word thing, that had a really contrived wedding interlude.There were hip hop elements to the Daft Punk/ Pharell Williams song, but it was more disco.
Country Music…or at least what is being passed off as country music got the face time. Merle Haggard, had the best showing here. Keith Urban , is about as country as Bon Jovi and even plays more like Ritchie Sambora than Chet Atkins. Which means their are more blurred lines in pop and country than in a Robin Thicke song.
Another trend were some of the forced collaborations that gave a nod to the more classic artists but were painfully awkward. Chicago sounded like they belonged on a cruise ship. Madonna looked like she was trying to hide her age by paling herself out beyond belief and the pimp cane seemed like a walker. Lindsey Buckingham’s guitar sounded great with Nine Inch Nails, but his singing didn’t mesh. Even Stevie Wonder sounded like he needed to brush the cobwebs off his vocal chords.
The show was mainly backing tracks, as the live mix was painfully off, most notably for Metallica, James Hetfield sang a song song the have been playing for over 20 years like he was at Karaoke and it became a train wreck, it sounded like the band could not hear each other.But is this any worse than Pink’s trapeze work becoming the focus as if anything with half a brain believed she was singing while doing that.
The good news is Lorde does have more substance than Miley Cyrus or the Hunter What’shisname kid who sounded like something from a high school talent show,so if the money machines are giving a push to her and Daft Punk it could be worse, but will it get any better?