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November 10, 2010 - Image 5

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaiiy.com

Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - 5A

The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom Wednesday, November 10, 2010 - 5A

Cee Lo's'Lady' kills

Surprisingly, the guy
behind'Fuck You'
seems pretty happy
By CASSIE BALFOUR
DailyArts Writer
Attention ladies: The lovesick
Cee Lo Green is no longer prowl-'
ing fluorescent-
lit streets in
search of a lover.
If his latest silky- Cee O
smooth album
The Lady Killer Green
is any indica- The Lady Killer
tion, the soul- Elekta
ful crooner is
in Love with a
capital "L." His album is filled
with creamy ballads and cinematic
bombast that mark a departure
from his previous status as a hip-
hop wildcard.
But almost completely absent
from this decadent album is
Green's infamous weirdness. The
rough edges that marked his pre-
vious solo work and made him an
underground mainstay (see Cee
Lo Green And His Perfect Imper-
fections) have been smoothed
over with radio-ready production.
Psychedelic hip hop is traded in
for pop-friendly R&B. His latest
is a throwback to the days when
albums had a storyline and had
to be listened to sequentially. The
Lady Killer almost sounds like a
retro tribute to classic Motown,
where love could send crooners to
dizzying heights and, just as quick-
ly, soul-crushing lows.
The Lady Killer was crafted to
sound like a noir film. Green's rich
vocals and liberal use of strings are
topped off with themes of betrayal,
love and loss. Some of his idiosyn-
cratic strangeness can be found
at the bookends of the album in
songs "The Lady Killer Theme
(Intro)" and "The Lady Killer
Theme (outro)." The intro features
Green speaking in low and seduc-
tive tones claiming that "When it
comes to ladies, I have a license to
kill.
After the slow spoken intro,
"Bright Lights Bigger City" kicks
off Green's dramatic album with
a swaggering but reverent hom-
age to Saturday nights. The track
is a classic funky pop song infused

with some fresh-sounding synths
as Green grandly proclaims that
the city "belongs to us tonight." it's
apparent by the end of track that
Green gets the girl, and he dedi-
cates the rest of the album to sing-
ing about this intoxicating woman.
The album is peppered with
soulful love songs, and "Please"
is no exception. The track fea-
tures periodic gunshots and Bel-
gian singer Selah Sue doing her
best Bond-girl impression. Green
answers her agonizing pleas for
love with slow, sexy vocals singing,
"I want you dead or alive / if you
promise to surrender I'll love you
tender." Here, Green plays with
themes of pleasure and pain with
deliciously campy results.
If the movies have taught us
anything, it's that love is every-
thing but perfect, and when Green
experiences heartbreak, he comes
ont swinging. "Fuck You," the
album's first single, gave Green
another taste of mainstream suc-
cess as radio stations rushed to
play the more Kidz Bop-friendly

"Forget You." However, listen-
ers should definitely check out
the original, as shouting "Forget
You" at the top of your lungs to
the lover who just scorned you
doesn't provide the same satisfac-
tion. Despite Green's obvious bit-
terness, the song is probably the
most fun on the album. With wily
lyrics ("I guess he's an Xbox / and
I'm more Atari") and background
vocals warning Green "she's a gold
digger," this is a worthy anthem for
the heartbroken and pissed-off.
one of the most surprisingly
successful efforts off of The Lady
Killer is Green's cover of the Band
of Horses track "No One's Gonna
Love You." Green updates the
song with his neo-soul vocal styl-
ings and use of orchestral strings.
So when Green sincerely belts out
that "No one is ever gonna love you
more than I do," he makes the lis-
tener believe his love is the most
important thing in the world. This
track delivers the perfect Holly-
wood ending to a truly cinematic
album.

You know what they say about guys with mega minds ... mega shoes.
Another ani-mated anti-hero

By BEN VERDI ally come from the same place as
DailyArts Writer heroes, since both he and Metro
Man Were (like Superman) sent to
"Megamind" walks the line Earth from faraway planets that
between being an easy-to-absorb were on the brink of destruction.
movie for kids The trouble is that once Metro
and a skillfully j Man and Megamind showed up
crafted critique of on Earth, the similarities between
the "superhero" Meanind their lives ended.
film itself. Megamind, a self-proclaimed
Much like At Quality16 villain, grew up an outcast. He had
this summer's and Rave no friends in school. He got picked
"Despicable Me," DreamWorks last at recess. He was the only kid
"Megamind" Animation with blue skin. He was bullied, inci-
(directed by Tom dentally, by Metro Man, and was
McGrath, who co-directed "MadA- made to feel inferior. So he decided
gascar") introduces a protago- to become evil because it seemed
nist who claims to be - and takes like the only thing he'd ever been
pride in being - a villain. Granted, good at.
Megamind (voiced by Will Ferrell, While this might feel like a child-
"The Other Guys") is not that suc- ish way to get an audience rooting
cessful at being a villain, at least for Megamind, it is also a valuable
not as successful as Metro City's observationofoursociety.Yes,some
main superhero, Metro Man (Brad people we consider "bad" seem too
Pitt, "Inglourious Basterds"). But crazy for our sympathy, but alot of
Megamind never stops scheming the time people who resort to being
evil plans to bring him the glory "bad" are desperate for the love and
and power that have eluded him all recognition they never received but
his life. always knew they deserved.
This somewhat unoriginal While this first question
premise produces more than a intrigues us, it does little more than
sympathetic antihero-with-heart. create an aura of sympathy around
The movie provides two philo- Megamind's character. Even if we
sophical questions that it explores feel sorry for him, his actions still
and tries to answer during its 96 resemble those of a pure villain.
minutes on screen. But the second, much more dif-
First, where do villains come ficult, question does provide that
from? intrigue: Where do real heroes
As far as Megamind's life come from?
informs us, villains can liter- While this film doesn't initially

define what a hero has to look like
or be able to do to warrant that title,
we're explicitly shown what a real
hero is not.
A hero is not someone with
superhuman strength, speed or
physical abilities. A hero is not
someone pursuing selfish ends
through their powers. And a hero
definitely doesn't threaten the life
of a lady like Roxanne Ritchi (Tina
Fey, "Date Night").
Megamind tries to answer this
hero question directly, but his plans
(again) blow up in his face. By try-
Valiantly
vilifying villainy.
ing to create a "hero" he merely
empowers an average person with
more power and responsibility than
they can handle. It is only when
Megamind realizes that there are
no pre-determined, inescapable
circumstances that make someone
inherently "good" or "bad" that he
can become the hero we all want
him to be.
Megamind's transformation pro-
vides us our most inspiring axiom
about heroes, because it allows any
one of us to become a hero in our
own way: Real heroes are defined
by the good they do, not the bad
they come from.

I

The Big Pink makes
tape unworthy of you

ByELLIOT ALPERN
For the Daily
Some may remember the Big
Pink of 2009, a band with prom-
ising riffs and a
certain attrac- -r*-
tive edginess
that hinted at The Big Pink
a strong future
for the London K7Tapes:
natives. How- Mixed by
ever, in the lat- Big Pink
est installment !K7
of mixtapes
produced under independent
German label !K7, The Big Pink
of yesteryear is lost in a mix of
electronic experimentation. The
result is a relatively confused
mess of remixed songs that, either
by design or failure, have next to
no common unity and even less
appeal.
In a promotionalwebsite forthe
album, Milo Cordell (the lead sing-
er and primary influence on the
album's mixing) provides insight
into the inspiration for his meth-
odology. He describes his genre as
"witch house" or "haunted house,"
a new, unsettling mix of electronic
house music coupled with a cer-
tain surreal ambience. As Cordell
describes it, his contribution is
a basic yet personal approach to
mixing, much like the D.I.Y.nature
brought on by the Internet. "Peo-
ple are making music six feet from
their beds," Cordell said on his
website. "That's always appealed
to me and my label, Merok."
The Big Pink's Tapes starts off
at a low standard and unsuccess-
fully attempts to dig itself out by
the end of its 19 tracks. More than
a couple of the songs are victims
of overly experimental sampling.
"Slow Dancing," the first song, is
a fusion of random interjections of
what seems to be agremlin singing
underwater and a jarring drum-
beat. Just when things appear to
be improving with the soothing
"Move On The Rain," the track
ends at just over a minute. Listen-

ers are then subjected to about
six minutes of traditional oriental
music laid over an inappropriately
random drum machine beat in
"Ego War."
That's not to say the entire
album is a loss. Take "Snake
Eater." Though it directly follows
the one-two punch of strangeness
at the beginning of the album, it's
free of the surrounding founda-
tion of mediocrity and shows real
promise. orchestral breaks create
asense oftension and buildup that,
when interrupted with samples of
vocals, come together to form a
palatable and actually enjoyable
piece of music.
At the album's end, the remixes
become less about beats or ran-
dom samplings and more about
establishing an atmosphere. In
some instances, it works: "Mum-
bai" is rather eerie, despite
suffering from the same over-
experimentation that plagues
the entire album. However, the
alluring promise of a remixed

"Fantas
is disap
abrupt,
remixin
last tr
Wine,"
The son
and in(
rough a
On
bar
Tapes
potentia
down. T
largely
are diff
barelyj
remixes
firstpla
more th

COURTESY OF ELEKTRA
o could look this awesome.
I mix
r heart
y," originally by the xx,
pointing. It is brief and
and the evidence of any
ig is skimpy at best. The
ack, entitled "Tetanus
is a fitting end to Tapes.
g, with its blend of synths
dustrial drums, is loud,
nd ultimately unpleasant.
ce-promising
id drowns in
remixes.
s, though brimming with
al, ends up a solid let-
rhe filler tracks, composed
of synth and basic drums,
icult to wade through and
make the few promising
worth listening to in the
ce. Tapes is worth avoiding
.an anythingelse.
COURTESYOF !K7
I

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Most hipster game of Mahjong ever.

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