"In short: 'Judas' is extremely good" begins U.K. blog Popjustice's review of Lady Gaga's highly-anticipated second single off Born This Way. There's an "In long" as well, naturally, and it is indeed long, as site creator Peter Robinson goes on to describe and evaluate every single aspect of the song, doing just about everything short of actually posting a video of him humming the song himself. Here's a rundown of what we learn about "Judas" from one pop writer-cum-fanboy's extended takeaway:
- It is Evolutionary Gaga. "Judas' is to 'Bad Romance' as 'Bad Romance' was to 'Poker Face'. It's a new experience in familiar territory, like dancing in your favourite club after it's had a new soundsystem fitted. The nods to 'Bad Romance' are deliberate - Gaga told us that...'I wanted it to be an evolution from where I’ve been before but in terms of the formula I wanted there to be something about 'Judas' that reminded people of what I’ve done in the past'. So there's a post-chorus like the 'Bad Romance' 'whoah-oah-oh' bit (here it's 'whoah-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh I'm in love with Ju-u-das, Ju-u-das'), there are some ra-ra post-chorus hook bits ('Juda-Judas, Juda-Judas, Juda-Judas, Juda-Gaga')"
- It is not entirely about religion. "The first time Lady Gaga played us the tune she told us that in broad terms it was about being in love with the worst guy you've ever met, but as you might expect there's more to it than that. "It's about leaving your darkness behind in order to come into the light," she added the other day. "I have a lot of things that have haunted me from my past—choices, men, drug abuse, being afraid to go back to New York, confronting old romances—and Judas represents, for me, something that is bad for me that I can't escape."
- It probably sounds seriously fucking bonkers. "Vocally Gaga's in completely new territory (in the verses and pre-chorus she hurls herself into a decadent half-sung, half-rapped Jamaican Patois style), the chorus is a thousand storeys high, there's a demented tribal techno breakdown, and the whole thing is a little bit overwhelming for all the right reasons...If Abba ever went to the sort of poppers-'n'-fisting Mannheim sex club Jake Shears told us about in 2009 'Judas' is the sort of song they would have come up with."
- It is about to make the phrase "Ear Condom" an inextricable part of your existence. "One of the more recent additions to the song, which has apparently only appeared in the last few weeks, is a middle eight that goes like this: 'In the most Biblical sense, I am beyond repentance. 'Fame hooker', 'prostitute wench', 'vomits her mind'... But in the cultural sense I just speak in future tense. Judas kiss me if offenced, or wear an ear condom next time.'"
- It is beyond controversy or criticism. "Will some people dislike it? Yes, and it is important that these people are able to accept that they are wrong. They will need your love and your respect while they come to terms with this difficult truth. Do not pity them, just offer them your help."
Jeez. Start bracing yourself for April 19th now, for afterwards our lives will surely never be the same.
For lots more pics, videos and up-to-the-second dish on Gaga, check out her Popdust Artist Page.