Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Otra Cosa

Otra Cosa
Julieta Venegas

I figured out recently why it is I enjoy Julieta Venegas' current set of records so much. She makes willing pop music, with a bit of a wistful air. I'd compare it to Ingrid Michaelson, if I liked any of her records. I'd compare it to Sarah Bareilles, again, if I liked her record. You remember her. She's the one who's not going to write you a love song cos you need it, etc. To be fair, I do like that song. But the rest of the album, much like everything Michaelson has done, is too empty. If there were a strong breeze, these albums would be blown away.

And that's just fine. A lot of people like that. And I'm sure more than a few people would chastise me for saying their songs are without heft. The appeal of Ingrid Michaelson seems to be that her words are "confessional," which has lately seemed to be code for "tactless." I like "Love Song" because Bareilles wrote it to her record company when they asked her to write a hit single for the album. So she gave them a single, a big one, telling them to fuck off. Which is a nice way to go about it, really. Usually, these women, and 99% of men are guilty of it as well, forget to have a sense of humour.

The point of this is that Venegas is a Spanish version of these young ladies. She's a bit older than either of them, but she's in that same vein, of crafting pop music for the masses. I should find her ingratiating, shallow, witless, and impossible. Fortunately for both Venegas and myself, she doesn't sing in English, so, unless I pay attention, I barely know what she's saying, and we both like it that way. So there you have it. I am capable of just enjoying a nice tune, despite what most of my friends will tell you.

The trick, as it turns out, is to make it so I can't understand a word you're saying.

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