UK-pop is one white man's thinly veiled attempt to capitalize on the success of a non-white group.
After witnessing the success of K-Pop groups such as BTS, Simon Cowell has decided to start a show intended to launch a "new wave" of music entitled "UK-Pop."
Naturally, this has incensed K-pop fans, who accused Cowell of "taking the title from the biggest group on the planet" and attempting to "make it white."
Cowell's comments came in the wake of the news that he's launching a new show entitled X Factor: The Band, which will attempt to create the next major musical super-group. The show's announcement also angered Lil Mix fans, as the group has a show that is based on the same premise, entitled The Search.
Regarding X Factor: The Band, Cowell said, "K-pop is ruling the world. This is a show to find a band to launch UK-pop," he said. "It's more than winning a record contract, it's starting a new music wave."
Maybe Simon Cowell needs to take a step back. "UK-pop" is not a brilliant innovation of Simon Cowell. The UK has been churning out pop artists since the inception of the modern music industry, and you can see its success in everything from The Beatles to One Direction. On the other hand, between the Macarena in 1996 and Psy's "Gangnam Style" in 2012, not a single non-English-language track hit Billboard's Top 10.
Non-English speaking artists have always been creating popular music, though, and in recent years they're finally pushing out English-speaking groups from the upper echelons of the mainstream. This week, BTS's Love Yourself: Answer broke records after becoming the first K-pop album to stay in the Billboard Top 200 for a year, and it's not like Billboard is the arbiter of all the world's music tastes. According to one study of YouTube's charts, for example, the top four biggest acts in the world are non-English speaking acts.
In light of this, Simon Cowell's comments display a marked ignorance and an apparently elevated view of the importance of the English language, hegemonic whiteness, and his own power. K-pop and Lil Mix fans know that what really matters in the end, is the relationship between the artists and their fans, and they know that K-pop is on top, no matter how many washed-up white music industry executives try to capitalize on it.
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Watch Fritz perform at 3PM on Popdust's livestream on Saturday, May 30th.
Fritz Hutchison just released his debut album, Wild Wild Acres.
It's the kind of album that will make you want to lounge in a hammock all day or ride a horse across the country or just drop everything and howl at the moon—it sounds like that kind of freedom. Hutchison is alternatively blunt and sincere, a trickster with a performative flair and a penchant for sunny hooks.
"Kill My Mind" is an Oasis rip off in the least flattering way.
Louis Tomlinson wants us to know that he's been listening to rock music.
Louis Tomlinson - Kill My Mind (Official Lyric Video) www.youtube.com
In an awkward 2017 profile with The Guardian, the former One Direction member described himself as "forgettable" and endorsed the idea that he was the "lowliest" member of the group, citing the fact that he never had a single vocal solo during his time with the band. "I'm trying to work out why it is that I'm [doing this]," he said, as a few offerings off his upcoming solo album played in the background. So he did what any uninspired artist would do: he went back to his "roots" and listened to the music he grew up with. "I grew up loving bands," Tomlinson told MTV. "Because I'm from the north of England naturally everyone's obsessed with Oasis and Arctic Monkeys." Consequently, Tomlinson's new single, "Kill My Mind," sounds like a mediocre tribute to early aughts British rock.
Liam Gallagher super imposed over an image from Tomlinson's "Kill My Mind" lyric video
"Kill My Mind" is melodically reminiscent of a 2006 Arctic Monkeys B-side, while lyrics like, "kept me living from the last time, from a prison of a past life," attempt to carry the metaphorical significance of an Oasis record, but mostly just don't make any sense. Tomlinson's attempt at a low nasally growl when he sings, "and you hate me, and I want more," just sounds like Liam Gallagher mimicry. Thematically, Tomlinson's wish-washy narrative makes it sound like he's trying to appear more prolific and rock-and-roll-esque than he actually is. Even the lyric video shows a cartoon Tomlinson directly copying the outfit and stance of Liam Gallagher during an Oasis performance. All of it feels fraudulent, none of it is compelling, and all of it suggests Tomlinson would rather be a third Gallagher brother than himself.
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