Britney Spears' new song, Hold it against me, has just premièred online and I'm sad to say she has returned with a run-of-the-mill, David Guetta-ish, dime-a-dozen, club track.
Hold it against me is effectively a schizophrenic dance song that can't make its mind up what segment of the dance market it wants to appeal to, so decides to target them all.
Its verses are driven by a thumping baseline, that's clearly aimed at the gay scene. Then the sound is softened in the chorus, by a textbook removal of the bass-line, which makes the song appeal to the pop market. The middle 8, which is the best part of the song and ironically features pretty much no Britney vocals, gives the song an edge by exposing the world, excitingly, to the grimy Dubstep sound of South London. But not being content with the stop off in London the song carries on in to an Ibiza rave, thus hopefully appealing to the big European clubs, with some euphoric atmosphere generating synths. Before it finally ends up back at the gay scene where it all started.
Britney Spears' Voice sounds about as soulless as it has since the amazing Blackout album and as such it maintains a monotone,deadpan stance pretty much throughout the song. Sporadically there are flourishes and inflections of a Britney that isn't on autopilot, but unfortunately it's not enough to lend the song any of her character or star quality.
This might explain why the Producers, Max Martin and Dr. Luke, "cleverly" decided to cram in as many sub-genres of dance music as they could logistically fit into a 4 minute pop song. Their reasoning must have been if the voice doesn't hold the attention of a a listener then the ever changing production will.
Unfortunately the way they handle this idea - and its also the reason the song doesn't become something magical- is that they use the most clichéd and overused motifs from each club style to formulate the song. This method, along with Ms Spears' voice, only emphasises the lack of any soul, creativity or life within Hold it against me.
Overall: Hold it against me, from the standpoint of someone expecting a song that was going to set the standard of pop music for years to come, is a disappointing single. Here's hoping, as my expectation is brought back to Earth, the song will have a fair chance to grow on me and I'll end up loving it the way everyone else seems to. Whatever the case I'm sure Britney Spears will be celebrating her next number 1 single with this song.