Wow… Chris Brown is begging his fans via Twitter to keep him relevant, Omarion is busy judging dance crews, and Usher is… just not interested in putting forth that much effort anymore. Wherefore art thou, dancing R&B/pop dudes?
Although previous single “Daddy’s Home” is a halfway decent track, that song and the many others like it that employ the whole “daddy” theme tend to have a whiff of incest about them that I just can’t get past—- maybe its me, but I just find that “call me what you call your father” thing a wee bit creepy for my tastes. However, “Lil Freak” has been one of my favorite tracks to leak from Ush’s upcoming and oft-delayed Raymond V. Raymond album, so I was curious to see if Tameka’s ex-boo was gonna bring the heat like it was 2004 all over again.
The answer, sadly, is “no” as Usher returns with his umpteenth club video whose choreography is just as un-inspired and tired as the uh, “plot”. First of all, we are subjected to an interminably long and pointless music-free intro a la “Telephone” just to simply establish that some average looking scared euro-model is walking through Nelly Furtado’s “Maneater” warehouse while being sized up in an elevator by a leering Nicki Minaj and her slutty lesbi-mob. And um was it me, or did the sound editor guy/gal go a bit overboard with the clicking stilettos effect? —- those were some loud a$$ heels! We then have to sit through said model’s journey into a world where “freaky” for Usher means nothing more than a couple of v-neck tees for him and some beginner pole dancing/“drop it like its NOT” moves for his eager posse of Pussycat Don’ts.
And Nicki Minaj? Ugh… I really can’t with this chick. Sporting a franken-wig that suggests a decision was never made if she was gonna go for “‘Vogue’-era Madonna” or “vintage semi-Whitney”, Nicki suits up in a tacky space brothel madame get-up and uses her big rap solo to seduce the terrified catalogue model by barking reindeer names at her. Throw in some “If”-style cyber voyeurism and cameos from Jamie Foxx and a taking-a-break-from-staged-paparazzi-photos Ciara, and you’ve got a sad situation where the only thing that really stands out is one dancer’s black and red leggings!
My main gripe with this whole supposed “freak” fest is that it’s anything but. I’ve grown so tired of artists who boast about being “oh so nasty” only to reveal that their kink threshold goes no further than strawberries ‘n’ cream and/or touchy feely bisexual chicks—- a threesome with two cute girls doesn’t make any of the participants “freaky”, it makes you a cliche. Its a shame cuz the song is hot and it seemed to be the perfect excuse to cook up some scandalous or at least somewhat eyebrow-raising visuals. Unfortunately the only shocking things about the creatively bankrupt “Lil Freak” video are its misguided star, his sexless rap sidekick and her “Double Scoop of Haagen Daz” hair—- which is sure to be a hoodrat fad in 3…2…. Grade: C
Oh, and I was kinda kidding last week when I did this post on Hugh Jackman’s overseas Lipton Iced Tea ad. However, a week later and its not so much a half-joke but rather a sobering reality that the latest video by an artist who fancies himself a modern day Michael just got served by a Hollywood actor and his dancing beverage commercial. *smh*
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