Singles (and Tinkles) of the Week

A different format this week, because there are a few singles of varying quality worth discussing for a myriad of reasons.

First up, our customary Single of the Week:

Flexing masterful funk.


And now, a few thoughts on some inferior singles, in descending order of quality:

Minaj’s swag is always on 1,000…If only the beat boasted as much of a distinct personality as her musical persona.


When the brief runtime (under two minutes!) is the most unconventional aspect of a song, then you know Tyler, the Creator has forsaken the sort of experimental creativity that makes him stand out from the generic rest; “435” falls squarely within the rest’s unremarkable wheelhouse.


Good beat, bad producing — what’s up with the sound levels?!


YoungBoy’s apparently transitioning into the Kodak Black-imitation phase of his career. Sarcasm alert: Oh Joy! Oh Rapture!


And finally, I’ve doled out this distinction once before, but I think I’m now going to make it a weekly tradition. Think of it as a counterpart to my “Single of the Week” title:

The Tinkle of the Week!

Some notes regarding this “award”: it shouldn’t be understood to designate the worst single of the week. First off, nobody can listen to the vast majority released week in and week out. As such, it’s safe to assume that the actual worst is nowhere near my queue. The Tinkle of the Week also isn’t synonymous with the worst single of the week that I happened to listen to. Rather, these tinkles should be seen as examples of superior artists striving to make it rain…only to fail and be left with a mere golden tinkle. Pleasurable for those who like that sort of thing, but not my cup of tea. But even so! They’re always worth reckoning with for whatever reason(s).

For instance:

I respect U2’s willing to experiment with EDM, but this ain’t it, kid. Hot take alert: a few of their previous forays into the genre comprise some of my favorite work of theirs from the 21st century. I can’t claim to have listened to every one of these forays — to their credit, they’re diving headfirst into the deep end of these waters, without much preliminary toe-dipping — but so far they seem more interested in channeling the formulaic side of EDM. If they want to experiment, simply dabbling in the most conventional aspects of another genre can’t be considered true experimentation. Why not find legitimately experimental DJs capable of finding creative ways to shake up the norms of both EDM and U2? Also, if their goal is to become relevant with younger generations, may I suggest avoiding titles like “Love Is Bigger Than Anything In Its Way”? Its eye-roll of a sentiment — mirrored in much of the lyrics — doesn’t help their reputation in the eyes of my contemporaries as corny geezers peddling self-help platitudes.

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