Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Single Review: Lady Gaga "Edge Of Glory" - Gaga releases yet another poor single.

What is going on with Lady Gaga and the Born this way project? The first single, also entitled Born this Way, was terrible. Judas was a little better. But new single Edge of Glory has her depressingly sliding back towards Born this way territory.

Simply put Edge of Glory isn't single material for an artist like Gaga who likes to distance herself from her piers; it sounds too much like what every other female pop singer at the moment is doing. But its choice as a single and its speedy release, considering the video for Judas was released last week, can be understood in the context of the Judas backlash. It seems damage control is now being implemented and the least offensive, most commercial song on the album has been released in an attempt to bring Gaga back to the mainstream market.

There are good points to be had. Gaga's vocals sound strong on the track, as she switches between, an almost unrecognisable, higher, thinner tone and a heavier, rocky rasp. The melody and the production is suitably nostalgic of the 80's- the era the album is inspired by- and, bar the saxophone and the overproduced feeling that seems to be this era's calling card, is interesting and frequently changed to keep the songs energy going.

At least Edge of Glory is Gaga back to making music that will sink or swim on its own musical merit instead of relying on  gimmicks, like championing a cause or courting controversy as the last two singles did respectively. However, the Baywatch saxophone and the similarities with Kelly Clarkson's My Life would suck without you is just too much for this song to be anywhere near the level of a classic.

Please Gaga, stop saying this project is going to be the "album of the decade" because everything you've released so far has been generic and throwaway. Your statement is starting to sound worryingly like you're overcompensating for what's looking more and more likely to be a stinker of an album.

Other Lady Gaga Posts:


  1. First, it's a PROMO release. Not her next single. Secondly, you are the first negative review I have read regarding this song.

  2. @anon, its a "single" in the sense of its being released independent of the album. Its also refereed to as as "Promotional Single", so please lets try not get into semantics over this.

    As for the review not being in accordance with what others think, that really not a concern of mine. I go on what I feel. Believe me when I say I wanted to like this, but I just don't!

  3. Song is redolent of a variety of past pop pieces, and she strangely sounds like Miley Cyrus, but its better than the pretentious and campy 'BTW' and 'Judahhsss!' tragedy

  4. Yeah, the person who wrote this clearly has no credentials, seeing "Born This Way" is an excellent (six-weeks-at-#1) track, "Judas" is on the verge of brilliance and "Edge of Glory" is the strongest song yet from what is proving to be THE album of the year. And indeed, "Edge of Glory" is a promo release and not an official single, so all your clout dissipates with calling it a single. "Hair" will be released to iTunes next Monday. And I, for one, cannot wait to seehow her streak of brilliance will continue.

  5. It's funny to see how personally people take things. An opinion does not require credentials, positive or negative. Art is subjective and music is very much about how it makes you feel. The Chicken Song also got to number one. Is this a mark of brilliance, or a mark of the time, place and people? Lady Gaga is a product as well as musician, but ultimately she's a just person to.

  6. Oops. That should read just a person too!

  7. @ Damion above: anyone who feels personally affronted by my review I'd just say that you need to relax a little. Lady Gaga is a successful musician, whose success isn't going to be hampered one iota by my lowly opinion. Please also remember this isn't personal, I don't hate Lady Gaga.

    If you like the song then that is just as valid as me not liking it and I accept your opinion. You should try doing the same.

    As for the need for qualifications to judge music I have to disagree with you. As George said above "An opinion does not require credentials, positive or negative. Art is subjective and music is very much about how it makes you feel.".

    IF you truly believe in the need for qualifications to judge music, then you probably need to stay away from blogs when looking for reviews.

    I guess you yourself fulfil have the relevant qualifications to judge music as you have commented on the "brilliance" of Gaga. I'd be delighted to read your educated opinion on the song. It may enlighten me and my unrefined ears.

    Thanks to both of you for commenting, i always enjoy reading peoples opinions/critisms.

  8. Already number 1 on i-tunes. I like it, I felt that she should bring out something a little poppier and lighter after the harder production sounds of the last two singles. It's got a very light fresh vocal, but I'm a little bit concerned that she's actually transposed her recording up a couple of keys in post-production (like early madonna used to do) and that she'll struggle with it live...we'll see.

  9. @anon above. I wasn't aware it had been transposed, but I suppose that explains why in parts it didn't sound quite like Gaga. thanks for the comment

  10. Hi again! Yes, I have no proof it's been transposed, but it's just a hunch really, based on her previous live performances / where her range seemed to lie in the past. Higher songs sometimes have a more 'poppy' sound, I think it suits the song but I'm just not sure how she'll do it live! We'll see.
    PS Could you please do a vocal range for Stevie Wonder? He has the most INCREDIBLE voice. Thanks!

  11. It saddens me that people actually consider BTW as a bad song... I actually thought it was a wonderful song. It has a nice positive message, instead of a trashy sexy (Rhianna & Kesha) message. Her vocals are great in the song as well. This was also proven by it breaking all sorts of records in sales. Also, I disagree with the sentiment that BTW and Judas sound like all other pop songs out there. That's ridiculous. I think both the songs (Whether you like them or not) sound different than anything on the radio. The thing about Gaga is that you'll always know it's her when listening to one of her songs. She's got such a distinctive sound. I feel people are just way too harsh on her. For one, there are PLENTY of songs on the radio right now that sound the exact same or like other songs, but no one complains about that. For instance, Britney's "Til The World Ends" sounds like Kesha's "Blow." Katy Perry's E.T. sounds exactly like Tatu's "All the Things she Said." All of Rhianna's songs sound the same. Now, as for Edge of Glory, I truly think it's an amazing song. Her vocals are great. It's got a nice clean, simple and cohesive sound. The song is very catchy, and screams to be a song you blast in your car singing to the top of your lungs on an open road. It's such a nostalgic throw-back to the 80's and early 90's that you just can't help but love it! In my humble opinion, I've liked all three songs for different reasons.

  12. @Tye: to be fair, i think i'm judging Lady Gaga's work by a higher standard-one that she set herself. A standard that has been set by statements made by Gaga like "album of the decade" and that the songs will be a "cultural baptism". Feats that none of her songs have done for me so far.

    In regards to not hearing the similarities in her songs, for "born this way" I can not believe that people can't hear "Express yourself" in it. Even the the iconic percussion that drove MAdonna's "Express yourself" makes an appearance in Born this way at 6.24. No other song I know of since "express yourself" has made use of that. It's pretty much lifted from MAdonna's song. The fact that Gaga is such a big MAdonna fan means there is NO QUESTION she wasn't as inspired, as were us other 80s kids, by the release of that song at the time. If truly was a game changer.

    As for Judas If you are telling me that the chorus doesn't sound like Bad Romance then that is nuts (listen to this LINK ; sure Bad romance is sped up but its still pretty much the same melody). Fair enough its her own song that it sounds like, but rehashing a song from her last album doesn't live up to the high standards she has proclaimed for this album.

    Edge of Glory is ok, but its still a sound that is evocative of one that permeates the music scene currently. In fact its probably GAga's most commercial and least Gagesque song to date.

    Like i said i'm judging this body of work by a totally different standard and a song that is pretty much like every other song out there at the moment- bar the Saxophone solo- doesn't reach that standard for me. Maybe I would have felt differently about these songs if gaga hadn't made the statements about the album, but we'll never know.

    As for the Britney and Kesha, I love those two. I dont see anything wrong with music that's throwaway or unoriginal as long as it invokes the relevant emotions that the song is aiming for. Ie "Till the World Ends" and "Blow" make me want to get up and dance and sing along! I'm aware that their music isn't going to change the world, but the difference between them and GAGA is that they don't claim it will. If Britney or Kesha claimed their music was something AMAZING then I'd probably judge them entirely different.

    I just wish Gaga would let her music speak for itself. If its going to be the album of the decade, it's for us- the public - to decide, and it's not for you to tell us.

  13. All of her recent works seem way too generic and safe. And all this Madonna comparison stuff is just insulting - to Madonna that is. GaGa is seeking to create controversy for the sake of it (cash) and its so obvious its rather sad. When Madonna did all this years ago (and properly by the way) she had a point to prove and really did break down barriers for not just women but men too of all walks of life. Gaga is not all bad but nowhere near in the same league. Ps I agree with your previous reviews Muffin Stuey

  14. I take it back - not transposed, just heard her sing it live at the Radio 1 big weekend. Sorry for doubting you Gaga! 'Hair' drops today, can't wait to hear it.

  15. really??? madonna had a point to prove??? 
    what was the point of her releasing her book entitled "sex" 
    why did she appear crucified on a cross during her tour which led to her excommunication from the church??? 
    madonna was as bad if not worse than gaga cuz at least gaga doesnt feel entitled to her fame 
    madonna is overbearing and wasn't ever really that great 

  16. i dont understand why people are calling madonna original when she was sued multiple times for copyright infringment most recently for her song frozen off hard candy....... 
    seriously there is nothing original under the sun - gaga is her own artist and personally i find her so different from madonna 
    i agree the songs on BTW were okay but i think people were let down because the expectations for lady gaga were so high set by her and by her fans and critics - i mean i would take born this way over albums like teenage dream ... 
    also i like gaga because shes bold - something she DOES share with madonna - shes not some lollypop pop princess and her persona and her music make people think and make people argue which is exactly what a real artist is