Songs of the Week: Pusha T Goes to the Opera
Pusha T feat. Tyler the Creator, Hodgy Beats, and Liva Don, “Ooh”
This song is a billion times better than “Trouble On My Mind,” the last track on which Tyler and Pusha got together, and that is due in large part to Odd Future afterthought Hodgy Beats, whose dope opening verse shouts out both The Most Dangerous Game and Watchmen.” Meanwhile, Push turns in his second-greatest reference to opera. (The first is from here, obviously: “Riding Chevys give us room to reload choppers / Gourmet beef, servin’ niggas filet Oscar / so many bitches screamin’, we should promote operas.”) That dude is great at rapping.
Gucci Mane and V-Nasty, “Loaded”
The fact that Gucci Mane is doing a whole mixtape with Kreayshawn’s sidekick is a real “oh how the mighty have fallen” moment. Why is this happening? Gucci could have done a whole mixtape with the rapping girl from Teen Witch, or Bulworth, and it would have been less upsetting. On the other hand: it’s still Gucci, and hearing him garble his way through sexual boasts that turn on the phrase “like they Crunchy Munch” is a timeless delight.
The Killers, “Cowboy Christmas Ball”
The Killers take a break from recording their next studio album to drop their sixth annual Christmas charity track (proceeds go to the AIDS awareness organization Product RED), a boot-stomping musical fable about Spanish ponies and lonely lovers and stuff. By the way, what is this band’s standing in the pop-culture universe right now? Like, is it super unhip of me to be really excited for their new album?
Trent Reznor and Karen O, “Immigrant Song”
You know how just 90 seconds of Trent Reznor and Karen O’s insane “Immigrant Song” cover in the trailer was enough to convince you that David Fincher’s The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is already the best movie of all time? Well, listening to the whole track, which is now available, will probably convince you to learn Swedish so you can appreciate the book in its original language.
Fort Lean, “Beach Holiday”
This is a perfectly wistful indie-rock jam and everything, but the real reason Brooklyn crew Fort Lean earned a Song of the Week nod? As this video attests, boy, they can really make deadpan faces! By the way, these dudes went to Wesleyan, just like MGMT and Das Racist and a bunch of other now-famous hip musicians. I’m gonna start telling people the Killers went to Wesleyan, just in case they judge me for liking the Killers.
The Weeknd, “Knowing”
This is the first official video from Drake’s enigmatic PBR&B pal The Weeknd. Unlike those awesome unofficial ones, in which hot chicks did weird things, this thing looks like it was dreamt up by a sixth-grader accidentally tripping on Tylenol Cold & Cough Nighttime on the tail end of a 36-hour World of Warcraft bender.
No, this isn’t the fantastic Clams Casino beat “Motivation” but a whole different fantastic rap song called “Motivation.” Rappers: start naming all of your songs “Motivation”!
Lady Gaga, “Marry the Night”
Lady Gaga made a 13-minute video for “Marry the Night” and, I swear to God, it is intentionally funny. “I loathe reality … For example, those nurses? They’re wearing next-season Calvin Klein.” That’s funny.
Lloyd, “She’s All I Want For Christmas”
Lloyd goes in on an early Michael Jackson vibe, and turns in the rare modern Christmas song that isn’t terrible. Serious question: is the reason this man is not more famous for his expertly crafted R&B jams because his name is Lloyd?
Matisyahu feat. Shyne, “Miracle”
Earlier this week, these TV ads commissioned by Israel to convince Israeli Americans to come back to the motherland showed up online. In one, a little girl is Skyping with her grandparents and they ask her what holiday she’s celebrating and she blurts out “Christmas” like a total idiot. The Internet thinks the ads are insane and manipulative, and they are. They’re also, it turns out, really effective! As a cheeseburger-eating, cowboy-hat wearing ex-Israeli, I now feel terrible. My penance is posting this song: it’s awful, but it features not one but two Jewish rappers, plus it’s about Hannukah. Take that, assimilation!