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By Russ Marshalek

I’m achingly tired of hearing how much you either hate or don’t care about Lady Gaga.  I don’t give a fuck about whatever lame-ass hypocritical faux-political whatthefuckever that has you knee-jerk responding to her new record with eye-rolls and flaccid listicles picking apart the ways in which she fucked up the Affordable Care Act. She’s consistently made fun, interesting and remotely challenging pop music from the start, and Artpop is no different. Beyond that, Artpop is weird–it opens with a spaghetti western that becomes a facsimile of a BT track (“Aura”) and closes with Gaga channeling Puck-via-Tinkerbelle (“Applause”). It’s the kind of weird that’s a decent, if half-hearted, grab at whatever crown it is Tori Amos is currently wearing (I SAID HALF-HEARTED. SHE WON’T GET IT. BOYS FOR PELE IS NUTS. VERY NUTS. MORE NUTS.) that Regina Spektor thinks she has on. But chances are, you’re Captain Lameo on Sucks patrol, and you’re relishing in schadenfreude over the fact that Gaga’s last record was a critical and commercial flop that featured her poorly photoshopped as a motorcycle on the cover.

Fuck You.

Or maybe you’re a Tumblr “artist” who’s upset that the aesthetic of her new record is “co-opting” your “art” of badly photoshopping a boob you drew in MS Paint on top of a mug on which a cartoon of Garfield the cat is illustrated, captioned “I hate Mondays.”

Fuck you, also. Maybe she co-opted your thing, but your thing sucked to begin with.

Artpop is so beyond a record, in which its every movement, every show appearance, every performance is another charted moment in its evolution, from the insane sobbing at the YouTube Awards to the absurd faux-sexuality of the SNL duet with R Kelly.


And the music. Let’s talk about the music, since obviously most critics don’t wanna bc it would set their stupid little ideas aflame. In the album’s first 30 seconds, Gaga kills off the characters she wrote into “Paparazzi” and “Telephone” and also announces her intent: to fuck you up. And she does. Find me another pop song this year as good as “Sexxx Dreams,” find me a come-on as twisted as “Swine,” find me a Billy Joel song written by Meat Loaf that works like “Dope” does. And then tie it all together, hell tie two exquisite pop records and an almost-perfect EP together through twisted nods and spat references to part work together the way that Gaga does on Artpop , and then we’ll talk.

Til then? I really pity you, haters. Bc like Madonna was in the 80s and 90s, Gaga’s not the pop star we want…but goddamn, she’s the pop star we deserve.

Russ (a place both wonderful and strange) is a musical human who DJs (and also tells you what to listen to, because he just knows, OK?); follow him on Twitter and Facebook.