Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Beyonce Knowles - Work It Out

Found at

It's always disappointing to me when the early works of an artist or genre get pegged as "gestation periods", because it always taints how people look at these works. I've read and heard people dismiss all pre-Merriweather Post Pavilion Animal Collective as simply prep work for that tight, poppy record. But does an artist look at things this way? Did AnCo always know they would produce MPP, but just needed about seven albums to get there? No. That's clearly stupid. And its falsely essentializing about a lot of wonderful, distinctive music. Consider this song. We have Beyonce post-Destiny's Child but pre-larger-than-life, funk sample, Rich Harrison-produced sassy diva. We also have The Neptunes pre-hip-hop chic. Admittedly, both of these future distinctions are present here, at least a little bit. The sparse and quirky guitar riff is very much the Pharrell of today. And the funky, attitude filled Beyonce with which we are so familiar is present. But notice, there are no samples here. The song is clearly funky, but slow, almost plodding, nothing like the aggressive waves of the monumental "Crazy in Love" or sass standards of B'day like "Suga Mama" and "Ring the Alarm". And last but not least, all of Beyonce's sass is channeled through a rather strange James Brown impression. To peg this as gestation would simply be not true, an applied narrative. And it would be missing a great song.

[via Maximum Fun dot org]

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