Jean Roch ft. Snoop Dogg – Saint Tropez

HAHAHAHAHA. What are Snoop Dogg and Karl Lagerfeld doing in a music video about St. Tropez? Why is St. Tropez such a popular topic for Europop songs? This has to be a song requested by the St. Tropez board of tourism — it’s just that bad, like those cheesy welcome videos that I saw at the airport when I was returning to America from Mexico. I just can’t get over the “I’m sitting on the dock” and “I’m sitting on a bench” lines. Perhaps they wanted to reach the heights of “Empire State of Mind,” but if that was the case, why did they hire an Italian, a German and an American to feature in a song about a town in France?

If you ignore the lyrics, the song isn’t that bad; it’s kind of similar to the random dance music I blasted in the car while driving around in high school. Snoop Dogg’s verse adds nothing to this song. In the beginning, he says “St. Tropez, whatchu know about that?” and later answers his own question with a self-evident “nothing” because he can only resort to cliché lines about sexy women, who are arguably everywhere and shows no special knowledge about the location at all. And how would you explain the weird and semi-creepy few seconds at the very end?

Justin Bieber – Boyfriend

Um, did I just get totally faked out by the beginning of this music video? What was up with that? OK, so the blonde girl shows her friend a video of Justin (on that mysterious phone) while they’re preparing to go to that…parking garage dance party(???), and lo and behold, it turns out Justin is there and they make the perfect couple! Honestly I can’t tell if that’s the same girl or not. (Fun fact: the actress, Rachel Barnes, is married IRL.)

I’m still not completely won over by Justin’s rapping, but his falsetto makes the song worth listening to. He just turned 18 in March, and I don’t think I’m ready to see him getting all Fast & Furious with the cars and the love interest wearing booty shorts and a crop top. Good efforts, Biebs, but you’re still too polished to fit in with that crowd. Besides, considering it’s a bunch of young people with fancy cars that were probably paid for by their parents, they’re not good enough for you! You worked hard for your money. It’s nice to see Justin dance, though, and I wish we got more of that instead of him sitting around on the various surfaces of his car singing to his lady, whom we are ALL picturing as Selena Gomez because duh.

Brought to you by Chunky Bieber, which is about as demeaning cool as Nicki tirelessly calling herself the “female Weezy.”

Rihanna – Where Have You Been

Is it bad that the first thing I thought of when watching this music video was that one America’s Next Top Model photoshoot of the models in the water, back when ANTM was actually about photos and not the crap it’s devolved into? Anyway, it’s great to see Rihanna actually doing some choreography instead of the generic dancing-in-one-place she usually does. I’m not sure, however, if having group of desert dancers — who look like they belong in an MIA video — dance to this kind of music counts as brilliant or just strange.

Overall, the mv is a gorgeous outlet for us to see Rihanna in a bunch of different looks, with a generous helping of certain eastern imagery. I have mixed feelings about the latter part, and it certainly doesn’t help me explain this:

And what is this supposed to be exactly??

Jon McLaughlin – Summer Is Over ft. Sara Bareilles

Jon McLaughlin and Sara Bareilles both have last names that I can’t spell without looking them up. Almost exactly three years ago, I went to see Jon McLaughlin perform at my university, which was awesome. He is a wonderful man, and seeing/hearing him perform a vocal & piano duet with Sara Bareilles is like a dream come true to my ears!! I haven’t seen someone play piano in a field since the heydays of Five For Fighting and Vanessa Carlton (fine, she was mostly in the street, but still!).

It’s interesting that this song is being released right as summer is beginning…but who can question the wisdom of record companies and their timing? Apparently this song is about the end of a summer fling, which is always a sad parting, but at least you’ll have the precious memories! That is, unless the other person secretly goes and has an autumn fling with one of your best friends and doesn’t afford you the respect to tell you until two months later…not that I’m speaking from personal experience or anything. Nope, this mv is all about celebrating the joy of getting to know Mr. or Ms. Right Now, when everything is beautiful and nothing hurts. Is it creepy to say I find Sara’s neck rather attractive?

Cori B. – Daddy’s Girl

Sooo apparently Snoop Dogg’s daughter has a burgeoning pop career. Amazingly, there’s no mention of her on Snoop’s Wikipedia page, though I can’t believe that I didn’t know until now that his actual name is Calvin Cordozar Broadus, Jr. Wow. Naturally, I’m tempted to make comparisons to that other singing celeb-spawn Willow Smith, though she and 12-year-old Cori B. vastly differ, choosing whatever styles encompass the opposite of their respective rapping fathers. Youtube commenters, apparently purveyors of a wealth of information, have brought my attention to the fact that Cori B. has Lupus, so kudos to her for working through that.

It’s hard to tell whether Cori B. is serious about this singing business or if she’s just doing it on a lark. The song, though catchy, is too mediocre (and niche-serving) to gain mainstream success, and the video ostensibly lacks much thought or vision. The somewhat awkward appearance of Snoop in his loving fatherly role is extremely cute and cringe-inducing at the same time, like when your elderly parents (or grandparents) loudly declare that they’ll never understand “this BookFace thing” in public. If the point of this song is to make us all jealous, then Cori B. has succeeded. Clearly, it is awesome to be a daddy’s girl if Snoop Dogg is your daddy. (Adopt me!!!)

OK Go – Skyscrapers

What is it like to dance inside a rainbow? (For some people, including yours truly, it’s hard enough answering the question what is it like to dance?) This music video is a departure from OK Go’s typical adventures in physics, and I much prefer this to their last noisy endeavor. “Skyscrapers” is no less visually arresting. Although there are two people dancing, the highlight of the mv appears to be the woman (as the top comments make clear), as the man somehow blends into the background more effectively. Or perhaps that’s the point of the video. Maybe it’s the point of dancing in general. The woman dancer, Trish Sie, has a brother in OK Go and has worked with the band on a number of their mvs, including their treadmill-themed breakout video, and now is her time to shine! Make sure to watch until the very end for an unexpected plug…

SHINee – Sherlock

After a painful (for fans) but well-deserved 1.5-year break, SHINee has finally returned with a new album (their Japanese one doesn’t count, didn’t even bother downloading it), and while it’s not as mind-blowing as Lucifer was, Sherlock is still an interesting new direction. The song in this music video is actually a mash-up of two other songs from the album, which is weird. I guess they liked the intro from the first song and the chorus of the second song..?

There’s some semblance of a storyline — Jessica plays a white collar criminal who coincidentally resembles an old statue? — but it’s lackluster, and frankly, the mv would’ve been the same with or without her (and the pitbull). Let’s talk about the dance. SHINee’s choreography is usually pretty solid, but I can’t watch this one without laughing. What…what is with the confidently high-stepping from one corner of the room to another?? There’s not much of a centralized style, either (unless you count neutrals?). The boys look very cute in their vintage ~detective wear, but during the dance sections, it’s like a free-for-all that may or may not be showcasing each member’s individual style. Taemin, for example, appears to be going through a Woodstock phase.