Monday, January 13, 2014

Shakira, Shakira. Rihanna, Rihanna

It's been trailed like it was the second coming of Elvis in a sparkly bra, and now the Shakira vs Rihanna duet, Can't Remember To Forget You has finally arrived. 

To be honest, it's no Beautiful Liar. 

It's no The Boy Is Mine, either. But it just about stands on it's own, slightly bizarre, reggae meets hair-metal merits. What's more, I suspect the chorus will worm its way into your brain and set up home there after about a week of radio play.  

But for a proper, thorough musical analysis, let's see what the professors of YouTube had to say in the first 10 minutes after the video was published. 

"So perfect," opined Sandra Saade, noting, in the words of Lester Bangs: "Shakira is fucking back, biiiiitches."

Nnyou was less impressed. "It sucks," he pouted. "A lot."  Nnyou concluded with an incisive critique of the song's place in the popular oeuvre, remarking: "Rihanna is so much better than this."

Meanwhile, Cristian Andres Ospina CastaƱo left a message in Shakira's native tongue. "Genial!" he wrote. "Gran colaboracion dos divas juntas!" I wasn't sure how to take this one at first but apparently juntas means "together", not "fat". 

In the end, however, we needed a singular intellect to really get to the crux of the matter. For that, we turned to TheMansterMonster - an unfamiliar name, but one we will surely be seeing in conjunction with the Pulitzer Prize in years to come. He (she?) set aside all musical prejudice to look at the wider social implications of the track. And in a single, concise, expertly-judged sentence, he noted: "They totally photoshopped Rihanna's breasts."

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