Edge Of Glory (Single Review) – Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga has been what you would call pretentious in her “Born This Way” era so far. In what way? well, she calls people to embrace who they are and yet, her image is fake, her covers are filled with prosthetic additions to her face  that make you cringe and her songs are anything but a simple manifestation of artistry.

More often than not, she writes songs that serve as a vehicle for her shock value entertainment, follows them up with a video that has nothing to do with the song, extends the video to about ten minutes and people go gaga over it. And it has been working for her except Judas isn’t doing as well as they thought it would, especially on pop radio.

Now, as part of an iTunes countdown to her album, Lady Gaga has released Edge Of Glory. I have mixed feelings about this. While I like the departure from the “religiously-controversial” and “born this way” themes to much less controversial stuff (such as love), I feel the song is simply deja vu.

Has Lady Gaga lost her touch? This is a song that doesn’t rely on techno music and electronic beats as much as it relies on simple pop music and it’s simply not as strong a tune that you would expect from someone who has given the masses hit after hit, some of which are quite good quality-wise.

Now, I’m not the best person to consider when it comes to Lady Gaga. I have yet to immediately get hooked on her songs. They usually get “stuck” so to speak due to radio overplaying them. But that’s not to say that “Edge Of Glory” isn’t catchy. After all, Lady Gaga knows how to write a crafty hook. And I especially like how the saxophone goes into play there. But I think when Lady Gaga tackles the issue of love for the first time in a single, I thought it would be more like this song (Captivated) before she went all gaga:

Regardless of what I think, her fans will eat this up. Watch it become #1 on iTunes in a few hours and debut high atop the Billboard Hot 100 next week. But selling truckloads of singles isn’t always a sign of quality. And I think Lady Gaga has become too indulgent.

Listen to Edge Of Glory here:

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56 thoughts on “Edge Of Glory (Single Review) – Lady Gaga

  1. FYI, this song was written with her father at her side on the piano just after her grandfather died. For the most part it’s about the moment before death. Not exactly a love song. I think this makes this song a bit more interesting an intense. Gaga will never try to reinvent the wheel – she has said this herself. What she is good at is knowing what makes a great pop song and then delivering the hell out of it. That’s what’s made her successful thus far.

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    • I read that. This was still promoted as a song that talks about love and that’s how I judged it. I’m not supposed to know all the circumstances regarding writing a song to be able to criticize it.
      And I think what has made her successful so far is the “alternative” she gives the media: a performer who is as out of the box as you could be. And the media loves it.

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      • Just like with anything, you should be educated before you go talking about it. You don’t see a president talking about issues without knowing what he’s talking about, do you? No, I didn’t think so. This song is about celebrating life and its last moments. The meaning is potrayed very well in the lyrics. I think you’re just trying to defend yourself when really you should just admit that you’re wrong and stop giving a very biased review of Lady Gaga and the song.

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  2. you do realise this song is not focused on love, right? You and I is more a love rock ballad than this. Edge of Glory is about finding peace and realising you have had a great, successful life and celebrating that in the final moments before you die. it is such a special song and I love it. One of her best

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    • I read that she wrote this after her grandfather died. Well, as I said to a previous comment, I’m not supposed to know all the circumstances before I judge this and this was promoted as a love song – and the lyrics do fit the context of a love song. It doesn’t exactly scream: this is about celebrating life’s worth.

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  3. This is a promotional release, not a single. You can’t say GaGa is losing it over one song from her 1/20 songs.
    I get that you don’t want nor care to understand what Lady GaGa is saying in her songs, if you wish to criticize it then please do your research first.

    1) The horns and prosthetic material that make you cringe are part of the whole “new race with no prejudice” thing that she is going for. Clearly she was not born that way and I doubt any rational mind would think that someone would be.
    2)The videos have very much to do with the song. Again, if you don’t wish to nor care to understand what is going on in the video then you can’t criticize it superficially. Most people miss the details. You can’t be a Lady GaGa fan if you don’t try, and no one is forcing you to be.
    3)This song is reminiscent of past hits, but do i have to remind you that Lady GaGa is still a pop singer? Just because she releases “controversial” songs and videos does not disqualify her from being able to release a relatively simple tune with an incredible saxophone breakdown.
    4)Lady GaGa songs almost never have one interpretation. That’s what I like about her. Until I hit the internet to understand what it was really about, being an actual GaGa fan (my name gave me away?), I thought it was about being on the edge of something amazing. I was close, but when I am on that edge I’m pretty sure I don’t express myself with excessive words. I just bask in the moment. Imagine yourself at the precipice of something amazing, and hear this song.

    5) Sorry for talking your ear off.

    Cheers.

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    • I know it’s an iTunes countdown thing but it’s still technically called a single. Whether it will be serviced to radio is still to be determined (Judas isn’t doing very well and this might be her upcoming single).
      As I said, I’m not a Lady Gaga fan. Her music is not something that appeals to me in general. She has some songs that I think are great and she has others that I can’t listen to. I have yet to listen to any of her albums in their entirety so there you have it.
      But I think that all songs, if overanalyzed, will have things in them that make you say: this is so smart. I mean, I can listen to Rebecca Black’s Friday and pull out some meanings about marxism and whatnot. Does that make it a great song? definitely not.

      Regarding the prosthetic stuff. How does building a “new” race exemplify the meaning of “Born This Way”?
      Regarding the videos, again, she uses shock-factor more so than actual entertainment value to get her message across. Sure, if you nitpick it here and there, you will find it related to the song somehow, but it is a music video after all, not a motion picture. What I said can be applied to Born This Way, Alejandro (cringes), etc…
      Regarding the pop artist and meaning things, granted, she still is a pop artist, I didn’t say she isn’t. But I feel this song isn’t that great, therefore, the critique. As I said, it is catchy and I do like the sax in it but I would have preferred a different handling of the issue.
      Some are saying that this song is a result of her grandfather dying. If it were me, I would write a ballad with kick-ass lyrics (like Captivated).

      And thank you for dropping by 🙂

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    • I think that pop music should be more than ‘I’m not sure what it means, maybe I should look it up on the internet to find out’. I think that’s what he’s hinting at. A song should be good for being good, for being catchy, or well written, and while this song may be a little catchy, it’s not overly well written and the meaning is clearly hidden. You shouldn’t have to TRY to be a fan of something, you should just be.

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  4. Actually, the Birth of The New Race is all about “Born This Way”. Gaga once said that “if you have revolutionary potential, than you have a moral imperative to make the world a better place” [gagavision no. 41]. She has obviously got a huge revolutionary potential, not only because of her worldwide fame, but mostly because of her ideas.

    She was born with that mind, with the “power” (by power, I mean talent enough to be a famous and influent artist) and the will to make the world better. So she gave birth to a new race, a race that is different because of her ideas.

    Also, in “Born This Way”, she shows us how she gives birth to that new race, but the new race also gives birth to her, because we are always getting better and changing ourselves, in other words, we are always being born again.

    I could explain what each video means, but not only I think it’s not so hard to understand, but also I have to work, so I can’t stay here.

    Maybe I didn’t express myself correctly, because I’m not a fluent english speaker. So, sorry for anything.

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    • Her ideas are as revolutionary as the media allows them to be. If suddenly the media decides to make Gaga irrelevant, she will become so. They think what she does today is cute and fun and out of the box. But when they don’t think it’s as cute and fun and out of the box anymore, she will only have her talent to rely on to make it work.
      But she is talented, as shown in the Captivated video I embedded in the post. All of this overanalysis, new world philosophy she is trying to make is not my cup of tea.

      And don’t worry about it, you expressed yourself really well 🙂

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  5. I guess you could call it a digital single but this has nothing to do with Judas. She mentioned releasing promotional songs the weeks before the album drops. “Hair” is coming out next Monday the same time.

    The most simple explanation for the horns is just being that she’s just exhibiting her position as “Mother Monster”.
    If you go a bit further, you realize she’s mimicking evolution. She’s evolving into a different race within the race of humanity that bears no prejudice and senseless hatred etc.. as was said in the beginning of her Born This Way video. That perfectly fits the theme of the song.
    It’s not like she ups and says she was born with the horns. Now that’s your interpretation of the horns.
    What could she have done? Looked normal?

    What better way to get people to look than having prosthetic horns on your face to show that?
    It sure got people talking.

    Concerning the videos, you’re missing the point. It all comes in the package.
    Unlike many of her contemporaries, she actually does try to convey meaning into her videos. I understand what you’re coming from, but I assure you they’re intentional.
    You cringed at Alejandro?
    Well the song is about not being able to let go of a lover who has died and trying to discipline yourself into having closure. I think the video is a great translation, albeit with more machine-gun bras 😛

    Did you hear the heartbeat at the beginning of the song? Did you notice the saxophone mimicking the flatline at the end?
    If she sang this as a ballad, it would not have had the same effect. Sure it would have been more touchy and more emotional, and trust me she will sing this one as a ballad at least once in the future. But had she did it, it would not have been as popular. This song hit the mark for younger audiences (generally unfamiliar with this music) and older audiences ( reminiscing Pat Benatar).

    I like Captivated, but there’s a reason it got cut. It would not have helped put her on the map.
    Shock tactics did!
    Now she’s putting her fame to use.

    At least she puts her money and time where her mouth is. I can’t say that applies to 99% of other artists out there. I’m sure some would if they had her popularity, but in the span of only three years, she’s done the unimaginable.

    Reading your blog. It’s epic 😀

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    • Call it inside info but her label is thinking about getting this out asap and calling Judas a casualty of the popularity this might get. If that doesn’t happen, then it’s just that – a promotional single.

      Again, if you overanalyze stuff, you are bound to find meaning. If I follow the evolution idea you mentioned, I don’t think humans will develop horns later on, since we’re talking about horns. So I think it was more of a shock tactic. Sure, it might be her way to say this is a different race, but ultimately how different is it? the video for Born This Way is weird to say the least. Skeleton people, alien species, etc… weird stuff that are there mostly to get people talking and they do. Proof: Born This Way is Gaga’s biggest hit so far and it has nothing to do with how good a song it is (I prefer Judas and Edge Of Glory over it).

      Regarding her videos, to each their own but I prefer Carrie Underwood’s videos for instance. They convey the messages they want to without shocking the viewer and they don’t extend to over 10 minutes. But that’s just me because I’m a country music fan so I’m not really in Lady Gaga’s target audience per se. Taylor Swift also comes to mind with the messages thing especially with her latest video “Mean”. It shows a gay guy and a young girl getting bullied at school. I think it’s a great video because it’s real. You don’t need to go that extra step to get the message across. It is there, pure and simple.
      And yes, I cringed when I watched Alejandro. Horrible video :p

      Regarding Edge Of Glory, I like it more now than I did yesterday and that’s probably because I’ve listened to it a few times more. My review still stands because I usually get over Gaga’s songs as fast as I like them. But I’ll give her this, the lyrics are in part great and the sax part is awesome. I haven’t noticed the flat-line stuff, which I believe goes into the over-analyzing realm of things but I will try to listen to it when I listen to the song again.

      And yes, Captivated wouldn’t have put her on the map simply because pop radio has their heads up their asses only playing crappy stuff on end. Part of why I don’t listen to radio is because great songs never make it there.

      And I do not know the extent of what Gaga is doing with her fame since I do not follow her that closely but I know for a fact many artists out there also advocate stuff they believe in, at least in country music, my turf :p

      And thank you for liking my blog 😀

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  6. Another thing that is kind of glaringly obvious to most people who’ve seen just one of her interviews even, is that the”persona” is the only thing she identifies herself with (as well as her family, friends and fans) which disproves the notion of it being “fake”. Calling it fake goes directly against the message of BTW. BTW is, lyrically and video-wise, essentially a song that celebrates constant rebirth in a life that offers a multitude of paths to take, choices to make and each one is symbolical of being born again in that moment if you wish to do so, even if it nullifies or goes against the principles of your previous birth(s).

    Re-creating or re-defining yourself is why the concept of the new race without prejudice comes in – she isn’t literally talking about such a thing but just one of the many rebirths she wishes a whole portion of the world population would experience (or rather: would eventually make that choice).

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    • I think she gives herself that persona to get people talking. And it works. She wants to make people think this how she always was, well I don’t think so.

      Regarding Born This Way, I will not rehash what I said in previous comments because I would over-repeating myself. But I agree with the message, think the video is horrible and could have delivered the message in a less-shocking and better way, to say it bluntly.

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      • That’s just the thing: she never said she’s always been like this – sure, she felt like an outcast in high school, she loved fashion and 80’s music but that might be it. In her interviews she’s always talking about the evolution and transition in her thinking (like any person that age) as well as her songwriting. Lady Gaga as a person, not a persona, instead of Stefani Germanotta is exactly the embodiment of one of her rebirths BTW is all about.

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  7. I respect that you have an opinion but respectfully disagree (along with whole lot of other music critics). I feel like this song is reminiscent of late 80’s pop songs with huge choruses which is why i personally love it. I also love that it’s anthemic. You don’t have to like because that’s your opinion. I’m just simply stating mine. I’m not trying to be a hater or a troll or anything because those people bother me

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  8. Eliefares-

    To suggest that Gaga’s creativity, ingenuity, purity of message, style, daring, reinvention of pop music and above all, huge heart — are somewhat inferior to Carrie Underwood — is the mark of someone who is, quite frankly, way off the mark.

    The Born This Way video had no “shocks” for me — if it did for you, you really need to start watching PG-13 movies and build your way up to the R. The video for Born This Way is so unique and creative, and possibly even epic, with its sci-fi leanings and cinema inspirations, it’s thematic tackling of good versus evil (in a music video!), its daring to suggest a utopia where a new race needs to wipe out an old one in order for human beings to progress…. I don’t know where to start if you don’t see those things.

    I’m a journalist myself and I actually fear that your objectivity has been compromised if you can’t see these very clear marks of creativity, inspiration and superb technical accomplishment.

    To say that Lady Gaga’s songs and style rely simply on shock value is a blunder of major proportions, and you will be proven wrong when you hear You and I.

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    • I was not comparing Gaga to Underwood. Where did you even get that? I was saying to a LebaGaga that I prefer videos of country songs because most of those songs have inherent messages in them that the videos get across without being overdone. I gave Carrie Underwood as an example.
      Why would I want to compare Carrie to Gaga? they cannot be compared. Carrie is country and Gaga is pure pop and none of them have any motive to switch to the other side. Had they been in one format, I would have compared.

      And regarding your whole PG-13/R advice, well since you are a “journalist”, why didn’t you read other posts on this blog? Maybe you would have seen that I reviewed movies of that rating 😉
      I don’t like the Born This Way video because only overanalysis leads you to the conclusions you get. And I don’t need to overanalyze a video. There’s a comment here by someone named Jesse. Read that and maybe you get the idea I’m trying to get across.
      The fact that you don’t think Lady Gaga relies on shock-value is quite surprising. You think coming to the grammys in an egg was not shock value? or the lyrical content of Judas is not? or the whole Alejandro video for instance?
      Also, I’m not trying to be objective. I’m not studying journalism, far from it actually and a review cannot be objective since it’s your opinion: whether you like something or not.

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      • What exactly is your definition of overanalyzation? Anything more than a glance at the screen? If anything, by the way, Taylor Swift’s music video for “Mean” is oversimplified and boring.

        Lady Gaga describes herself as not only a singer/songwriter, but also as a performance artist. And frankly, whether or not Lady Gaga’s eccentricity is a “persona” or an act isn’t for you, me or anyone else to decide. She claims that it’s all a part of her artistic vision. You make yourself seem really ignorant when you say she does it for the attention.

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        • Overanalyzation = making Harry Potter seem like an erotica: ie: putting something where something does not exist.

          2) Lady Gaga’s artistic persona? LOL. Yeah, mermaid on stage in wheelchair… she’s not bringing attention to herself, right? Tell that to Bette Midler. Ignorant? Please. Next.

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  9. Eliefares-

    I realized you weren’t comparing Gaga directly to Underwood but thought the analogy was very strange.

    Born This Way and the egg/pod arrival did not “shock,” they are just conceptual and creative set-pieces, which is what we expect from Lady Gaga and are very much tied to the theme of the album and her message. To shock would be to do something completely disconnected and extraneous, like show up at the Grammys nude.

    A note on the idea of a critic being objective — totally disagree with you. Critcism should not be simply a matter of subjectivity. My job as a film critic is not to tell people “what I like” — it’s to evaluate art based on my knowledge of genre, artist’s intention, competencies in form, etc. Whether or not I “like” a particular film doesn’t have much bearing on whether I think it is a “good” film (meaning that its objectives were achieved). There are plenty of things you can personally dislike for an array of reasons, but as a critic you have to stay above those personal biases and filter them out of your review. For example, I just saw a very well-made and thoughful film called Incendies, which was nominted for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. I recognize with my critical faculties that it is well-written, politically relevant, rich in many ways. However, personally, I didn’t care much for it and it didn’t move me — for my own reasons. That doesn’t mean that I give it a bad review. On the contrary, I give it a good one because it fulfills all of its requirements splendidly. If someone doesn’t like romantic comedies they have to be open to the genre and its rules and recognize good examples of them when they arrive. “I didn’t like it” doesn’t equal “Thorough critical analysis.”

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    • Call me Elie 🙂

      Or she could have showed up in a meat suit again :p
      Don’t tell me Gaga doesn’t aim to shock. Sure, you might interpret it in a way that goes with the message she is trying to get across but eventually, she gets people talking and that’s her ultimate goal.

      Regarding critique, if all professional critics do what you said and recognize a movie based on its merits and not whether they personally enjoyed it then most movies would have a unified opinion, if the critique is objective. But that’s not the case. All movies have good and bad reviews, even those whose reviews are skewed one way or another.
      Would you say the discrepancy between reviews is a sign of them not being objective? I don’t think the LA Times, the NY Times and other publications would hire people who are less than the best at what they do.
      So yeah subjectivity does come into play because that’s what will set reviews apart: whether this particular movie or song appealed to the person or not. The technicalities are there. And they have their own categories for awards but what makes a movie win over another for best picture? I hardly think it’s quality as much as it is objectivity. Case in point: The Hurt Locker.

      I am not a professional at this and blogging/writing is more a hobby than a professional thing I’m pursuing. What I am professional at is my field, which is biology and soon medicine.

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  10. Eliefares – I think you did a pretty good job standing up for what you believe, sometimes it’s pretty hard standing up to some of the ‘monsters’ because of their die-hard love for Gaga.

    lee – I agree with you in part about the critic, but also believe that criticism can stem from personal beliefs and whatnot. When someone has a criticism about a movie it doesn’t always stem from an unbiased decision they make. I think that true critics should try their best to give an unobjective decision about something, however, I think that everyone is entitled to their own criticisms about anything.

    Further with lee – Gaga has shown a sense of creativity with her persona as well as the music videos that she has released but with each step she seems to be trying to even out-do herself. In the beginning she honestly began as a truly pop artist. Think Just Dance and Poker Face. She truly held everything that pop music stands for these days, songs about clubbing, dancing with a tint of sexualization. She has since grown, but retains similar themes through to this day. You can’t tell me that she doesn’t throw sexuality out everywhere she gets a chance…and I think that the ‘cultural baptism’ or ‘reinvention of pop music’ may require Gaga to put her mouth where her money is…what has she done that’s truly original or that takes steps away from what pop music already is beyond her own persona??

    In addition, you claim that Lady Gaga doesn’t do things for ‘shock value’ which I think is way off the mark. Do you think one day she was just like, I’m going to go to the Grammy’s in an egg and hatch on stage…this isn’t something that usually happens on the Grammy’s, unless that’s in the unviewed portion of the show. And you claim that Born This Way had no shocks, as if being born/or giving birth to alien life form in music videos is passe??

    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never said that she doesn’t have epic music videos. Bad Romance will probably go down in history as one of the best ever, but to say that she doesn’t do things for shock value is demeaning to the American public. Let’s go further with this one, quickly (burning body in Bad Romance, killing a person/whole restaurant in Telephone, killing a man in Paparazi, inter-racial/lesbian sex in officers booth in Love Game, lots of sex in Alejandro, Judas [needn’t say more]).

    What I’m trying to say here is that while a lot of people say that Lady Gaga is trying to reinvent the wheel, she hasn’t done a whole lot that hasn’t already been done. Marilyn Manson did the shock rock, Madonna did the sexuality, did the shock value. She is an inspiring person with her real life messages, but her music doesn’t take her further than anyone before her…it’s her public persona that separates her from everyone else.

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    • I was going to make a bullet-point reply list to address everything you said but lost all desire to do so when I read that you list ‘inter-racial’ sex as shocking, controversial or anything that would remotely surprise a mass audience. Now does it seem likely Gaga’s backup dancers always include black and latino people because she’s big on the message of equality? Obviously so. Or did you think the ‘inter-racial sex’ was put in there just to push the envelope? Either way she’s going to get blamed for being too obvious/obscure or trying too hard/too little anyway, so I might as well give up.

      It is shocking that mass scale, institutionalized bigotry or cruelty like Nazism and Apartheid ended a relatively short time ago, true. But for the very few strides it does make, give the human race some credit when it happens, hmm? 😉

      The horns comment was a joke. A reporter went “ooh, you were born this way?” and she laughed, saying “yes, obviously, I don’t know how I’ve been able to hide them from the public for all these years!” This woman knows damn well what she’s doing, whether it be appealing to the masses or putting influences of a late-30s interpretive dance/ballet director, Surrealist imagery and Alfred Hitchcock references in mainstream pop videos. Don’t even remotely assume she’d be serious about such an inane idea.

      Not talking about Jessie or Elie in particular here but it’s also striking how a lot of people with a kind of one-note or ‘out-there’ opinion about her (dumb, skank, fake, bitch, talentless, too weird, satanic/Illuminati, nothing but a madonna rip-off, just another blond pop tart, etc.) have a) never seen one of her interviews (the last one for E! Entertainment – the full version – was a good one) and/or b) has seen or heard any of her live performances or acoustic versions. Just look up You and I, Speechless at the launch of Vevo, or her Telephone/Dance in the Dark medley on Youtube.

      I used to be completely indifferent to her music, but I did at least appreciate/respect the person, her core messages, incredible work ethic and the gigantic feat of trying to fit 25 hours into one day for three years straight – and then I somehow grew into a full-blown fan, not the most natural of transitions.

      Just looking at these kinds of things makes you start to understand even a little bit of why everyone’s so crazy about her (to tell you the truth, I sure as hell didn’t get it two years ago). Her massive fanbase has grown not only based on pop records but for a variety of reasons most people with an extremely negative opinion don’t (don’t try to, want to or bother to) understand.

      Of course I’m not saying you’re suddenly going to be a fan of her music, I’m just talking about knowing or at least researching the topics you’re writing about when you’re a critic. Whenever I see a review hell-bent on saying NOTHING positive about her (most of the time completely ignoring rating the music in question) I feel that’s almost always a problem. Say what you will about the topics at hand of course, which are her music and performances but please keep your judgment of a whole person out of it (or was this supposed to be a review for the song “The Edge of Glory”? I hadn’t noticed).

      You have to research and especially compromise to make complete or extreme negativity towards something NOT look like “I went into this with a mindset mostly influenced by personal opinion of their previous works before I even heard what I’m reviewing today”. Which critic do you prefer? The one who knows what they’re talking about to the tiniest of details and judges solely on that or the person who’ll churn out the same review for the same artist because “they just don’t like her”? That’s right, neither. You’d want someone who meets in the middle. Don’t go around giving music and/or art criticism a bad name saying that it’s only based on personal bias because if that were the case, half the human race could call themselves a critic. And there’d be absolutely nothing to set you aside from them (meaning: credibility).

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      • If I like something by Gaga, I will say I liked it and review it accordingly. If I didn’t, I won’t fake I did just because of the supposed quality of it.
        I acknowledged the parts of the song that I liked (lyrics and saxophone) but said I would have preferred a different approach to the topic at hand.

        You talk about research… this is pop music and it’s about an image. I’m talking about the image I get from Gaga. Do I need to researching about everything she does? I don’t think so. Do I need to watch every single interview she did? I barely have time. I take things as is. And many people see this the way I see it.
        Horns or no horns, this era could have been handled way differently.

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  11. PS – She has said in an interview that the ‘horns’ are something that she was born with but have been hidden (or something to that effect). Either way, it was something she has claimed to be ‘born with’

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  12. Are you trying to reinforce my point? Yes, most people will take things as is, which is where the difference between “critic” or “person with an opinion” lies. And a big portion of this review is about the PERSON, not the song you’re reviewing, which is why I am focusing on that here as well. Of course I’m not a crazy “stan” with no life who’s watched or heard or seen every single thing she’s ever done – I was making one suggestion that might make you or anyone else with a very strong opinion about her for that matter understand that not liking what she puts out there and respecting her aren’t mutually exclusive things. A lot of people who are indifferent about her music do seem to get that. Music reviews aren’t about praising said music into the heavens as the best thing since sliced bread nor is it about tearing down everything about the face behind the song (there we are talking about meeting in the middle again).

    I cringe at music article or youtube comments which is why I turn to critics if I want a mixture of opinion and analysis. I say all of this not as a “stan”, have never been to one of her concerts, don’t think The Fame was good (The Fame Monster on the other hand…), I think BTW wasn’t the best choice as a single for this album (without some major fine-tuning), let alone the first single, think the overall promo for this album is messy at best and I don’t find TEOG spectacular at all. But a music review is a music review and I’d say let’s stick to that rather than harping on about: her being pretentious, her being fake, not having an interest in her own music except for the “shock” value of said music (ever heard about her career as a songwriter before she did this?), about how those horns and prosthetic additions she wears on the cover of BTW and TEOG are apparently supposed to make everyone cringe (if you want do do a review on bias alone you could have just said “make me cringe”, y’know?), stating that she’s never addressed love in a single before when Judas was about just that, how you talk about religious controversy as if any of the lyrics or the video of Judas are offensive just to be offensive (except to religious fanatics without any kind of abstract thinking or understanding metaphors, I guess), that her music is anything but the art of restoring antiques or making a table (“artistry” doesn’t have the same broad connotation that “art” has, you know. Or were you trying to say that “her music” sucks? Sounds much more in line with those previous statements you made), that her videos are too long for your liking (yet the only thing visual media shows are the 4 mins sung parts and the “long version” is something you have to look up because you are interested enough to do so, that people went crazy over Born This Way (I’d be hard pressed to find Gaga fans on music boards who actually liked it), about how her previous single isn’t doing well (and that is relevant to the song TEOG how?) BEFORE you address The Edge of Glory, which is the song you’re supposedly reviewing. Next time just title it “My opinion on Lady Gaga” and call it a day.

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      • I’m kind of apprehensive when it comes to Hair – on the one hand it’s been said to be a favorite of many critics but on the other hand the lyrics seem pretty (and by that I mean very) shallow and RedOne’s producing this one, meaning this is going to be another Industrial/Dance track with the same blaring noise repeating over and over again before the chorus (eg. Just Dance, Pokerface, etc.). So…yeah. Looking forward to the early release of the album, of course.

        I’m sure you’re ready to bash my head in with all my requests to watch videos by now, but as a fan who didn’t dig The Edge of Glory I gained a lot more respect and appreciation for it after listening to the first live performance this weekend. Now I have no idea if this can have such an effect on someone who’s not that much of a fan – but I thought it was interesting to share with you nonetheless, if you want to take the time to listen. 🙂

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    • I was not criticizing Gaga as a person. How would I know her? I was criticizing her image and like it or not, The Edge Of Glory is part of that image. It’s her upcoming single (it has been confirmed).
      Like it or not, I have actually reviewed the song. I mentioned its positive points (lyrics, saxophone) and its negative aspects (the fact that it simply doesn’t pack a punch like other Gaga singles).
      The fact that you are only commenting on some of the aspects Gaga has been adopting in her Born This Way era is not seeing the whole picture.
      Judas was about love? true but it wasn’t about love only. That’s why I put captivated in there. A song shouldn’t have an ulterior motive. She could have written the same concept expressed in Judas (loving someone despite him/her not being good for you) without all the religious connotations. The fact that she did it means she wants to stir things up. Some people like it, some people don’t. I’m on the people who don’t side.

      All the things I have stated about Gaga (pretentious, indulgent) are in the context of the Born This Way era. I, for one, preferred the image she was trying to get across much more in her The Fame era. I didn’t have a blog back then to communicate this. So you can’t say I’m only bashing Gaga and not addressing her music. I was complementary of the message behind Born This Way (the song) but I didn’t like the video.

      You mean I need to look up the long version of Lady Gaga’s videos? the only versions I have ever watched are the extended ones. I’m sure she doesn’t publish two versions of each video. Trust me, I’m not that interested.

      I’m allowed for my opinion regarding Gaga and I think my review of something is basically my opinion of it, while acknowledging its strength and weaknesses, as I did.
      Whether you agree or disagree with it is your problem.

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      • Elie, where did I state that you didn’t say anything about the song? I’m just baffled that it took four paragraphs of stating your dislike of her work in general, including implicating that her music “sucks” (or this era, as you said) before getting to the one paragraph pertaining to the song. Again, “my opinion on Lady Gaga with two sentences about TEOG” would’ve been a more accurate title.

        And of course there aren’t any “double” extended music videos out there. I just wanted to say that I found it puzzling that you call her extended videos pretentious while the masses only get the short, music-portion on tv as opposed to those who are interested in watching the full version and watch it on Youtube for example. They seek it out. If Telephone and BTW had been shoved down the public’s throats completely uncut however the argument of them being pretentious would’ve sounded more convincing.

        I’m not suggesting you should put effort into researching this if you don’t want to – that’s fine. But you also have to respect that people who do know their stuff when it comes to this particular topic can and will come point it out in the comments. I disagree with your views about critiquing her music or performances “as is” because that’s what every other person on the planet with a shallow opinion does – would you call every one of those opinions thorough analysis without context?

        Judas used a metaphor, I can not stress this enough. Most people are – hopefully – aware of that, but a lot of them still can’t quite see past the religious imagery. I personally believe that giving any kind of religion the privilege to be put on a pedestal, free of all critique or even referencing – because seriously, this is what Judas is all about – is an inherent breach of core values of a society spawned by the Enlightenment.

        The song and the music video merely reference elements of Catholic faith and one would be hard pressed to find any actual critique in there if you look farther than just the title of the song. Most of the supposed controversy happened before the release of the video, which was received by many as “wow, she’s been tame this time”, “I expected something more shocking” or “too mild, this is not what I expect of her”.

        You claim she wrote it solely to stir up controversy instead of doing a good ol’ fashioned love song stripped of anything remotely unique or having an interesting angle (very innovative approach, by the way) while she’s already done those but in visually and auditory arrangements that showcase her creativity beautifully. Judas is just an incarnation of those that came before it.

        You and I know that public figures expressing anything related to their religion are readily called blasphemous by fanatics. Lady Gaga happens to be fascinated by pop culture as a whole (the Fame is a very good example of this), Dadaism (Telephone video), Surrealism (Born This Way video) and Biblical imagery, iconography and scriptures and is known to be a devoted Christian herself. I personally don’t care for that last part but it strikes me that a lot of people either ignore this fact or think it’s necessary to dictate how their religion should be practiced as opposed to a person’s individual approach. Should society’s archaic constraints prevent her from materializing her creative vision merely because it involves religious elements? One could argue about “sex” and “violence” in the Paparazzi video for example but religious fanatics never turned their heads when it came to that one. Here we’re just talking about the tip of the iceberg of the blatant hypocrisy displayed religious fanatics all the time.

        Would Lady Gaga, stripped off of her innovative fashion and particular music style(s), have changed the landscape of the industry as much as she has within the last three years? I don’t think so – and yes, I love listening to her performing just with her voice and a piano – that’s something most Gaga fans would admit to. One of the things that work in her favor is that she sees things on a grand scale, gathers the means (Haus of Gaga is a great example of this) and the courage to make very bold statements (the meat dress for example reflected her wanting to have her cut in what she referred to in her speech at a DADT rally – “Equality is the prime rib of America”).

        Her body of work seems to be one fluid sequence of her mind, her thoughts and her feelings having come to life in her looks, her music, interviews and speeches. Besides being a damn good businesswoman that incredible passion and boundless devotion for everything she does is still so overpowering that the “controversy for controversy’s sake” argument becomes void the minute you dig a little deeper.

        Controversy can be a great wake-up call for society and a stimulant for progression. If she puts nearly all of her funds back into her shows, clothes and any and all projects she’s engaged in (this is a verified fact) while still donating to various charity causes and trying her absolute best to bring across messages that an enlightened society such as ours should already be embracing – does that make her a “fake” or an “attention seeker”? Isn’t that a really one-dimensional way of looking at it?

        Yes, she knows how to generate that attention and I’d rather be it in her hands than some random hip hop labels having a monopoly on music and on pop culture. Seriously, this woman hasn’t had a day off in about a year or something – she’s all across the globe, giving interviews, speeches, concerts or other types of live performances almost every single day and in her off-time she makes videos for Gagavision (weekly snippets to show fans what she’s working on at the moment), tweets and makes regular random videos in which she talks to her fans as a collective with great empathy and gratitude. Is that not passion? If you don’t think so, I wouldn’t know what is. Yes, this fan-feedback cycle has a huge effect on her image and status. That’s true, but what’s so wrong about it if she genuinely cares?

        I can’t shove my opinion down your throat just like you can’t do the same to me. All I wanted to accentuate was that criticizing her for knowing how to be and stay in the spotlight doesn’t take into account what she does with said attention, why she seeks it and what kinds of emotions and notions drive her to do so. And I suspect Judas wasn’t even expected to generate such controversy – the fact that it did is nothing but a reminder of humanity’s short-sightedness and the media’s proclivity to produce “juicy” stories and blowing up situations entirely.

        She’s “shocked” people before but the only fact we can derive from that is that she changed some people’s perceptions or made them familiar with abstract ideas they’d never even considered before. Whether it through any of her creative outlets. And she’s planning on repeating said cycle over and over again while evolving until she’s physically incapable of doing so – her words, said with passion. Dismissing this by saying “she’s only out to shock people – for attention” becomes a silly statement just like the argument that it’s all about the money becomes just as empty when you look up facts to see that she almost bankrupted herself when she began her Fame Monster Ball Tour and apparently isn’t afraid of doing that again if it means she gets to be on stage and be heard.

        Again, can’t force you, but if you are interested here are six and a half minutes of Gaga at her best and just doing her thing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tNhXCi87EsQ. I’d say it would be time well-spent.

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        • I am not American, therefore, I do not get Gaga’s videos on any music channel. I only get to watch them on YouTube. So yeah, it’s not that I’m overly interested, it’s simply the only option I have.
          And again, you can’t separate the song from the body of work it is in. The review is basically six paragraphs. The first 2 are a comment on her work this era. The following three are my review of this song. Many have actually complemented me on it.
          The fact that you don’t agree doesn’t mean this review is any less credible. Any album review references an artist’s work, be it favorably or negatively. And so does a single review.

          And I get the point behind Judas. Getting the point and agreeing with it are two different things, in my opinion. But yet again, I see way too much overanalysis in your comment. More so than the song can hold, actually.

          Anyway, thank you for commenting. I don’t mind people disagreeing with me. What I do mind is people (and I don’t mean you) telling me that I don’t “get it” just because I don’t like it.

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      • If people tell you that you “don’t get it”, that’s just plain insulting and frankly lazy on the writer’s part. Our minds will always find ways to justify our own almost static opinions when they are contrasted with someone’s else’s if it tends to clash. Convincing yourself that you’re “right” and the other must be “wrong” and be done with it is so absurd yet a very easy thing to resort to. I’m sad to hear that people have told you that – I go cringe whenever I see those kinds of comments on arguments all over the internet and in real life. Come on, man, if you want to do something, don’t be so completely half-assed about it that you accomplish nothing but stroking your own ego and pissing off your discussion partner.

        I’m European myself, so I only watch stuff on vevo or other Youtube channels. But that’s because I actively follow her and you’re right, if you don’t have all the options presented to you to watch it all on tv it becomes a choice solved by your level of personal interest and engagement.

        Well, I’m kind of a lover of overanalyzing – I’ve always tended to do that because without it I find the world boring, frankly. Like you said somewhere if you think hard enough you’ll find meaning in everything. Whether you find that pursuit productive or a waste of time is up to you. 🙂 It’s this gigantic opportunity to discuss and interpret Lady Gaga’s work that makes her the only “contemporary” musical artist I bother to listen to again and again. Most of her work is clearly crafted to make space for differing views and interpretations, which is something I only tend to find in literature and poetry rather than our ready-to-go “sex and booze and partying and more sex” pop music scene. Or my knowledge of the current musical landscape is really limited, that’s a big possibility as well.

        Anyhow, I’d just like to thank you for talking about the way you approached each paragraph because honestly the buildup did make more sense to me when I read this comment.

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        • I’m glad my review makes more sense to you now 🙂
          And yeah, we are alike in that way, except my interest goes not to pop music but to a totally different genre altogether.
          And I do like analyzing, but I don’t believe a song – regardless of who the artist is – warrants this much analysis.

          Thank you for your comments. I can’t wait to see what you’ll say about my review of Hair when it’s released :p

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  13. Poeple debating Born This Way: every comment I read is an over analyzation. The most signifigant line in the music video is “… good cannot exist without evil”. The video and song are about loving yourself, and the other message is that we need to accept our haters (as Gaga has done), but live by the philosophy: Those who matter don’t mind, and those who mind don’t matter.” Just move on. This is my opinion and amatuer interpretation.

    RE: The Born This Way Album so far. Everything she has released so far is trying to hard. With the Fame it was all sort of a fluke, which got people interested in this phenomenon of Lady Gaga. Now that she has this reputation to uphold it doesn’t really seem to work anymore. She’s lost some of the mystery, as far as I can tell.

    Judas wa good to listen to, but the video was so normal, with no video stunt or anything to hook you in.
    Edge of Glory isn’t really that amazing musically. As always, Lady Gaga has provided beautiful lyrics, but this time her delivery didn’t uphold.

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  14. Omg the “born this way” thing has to stop. To interpret it literally would be missing the point. We’re born this way to be true to ourselves, whatever it is.
    Goddamnit and yes GaGa is about overanalyzation. Everything she does she puts her effort into it and if you want to criticize her then you better put the same effort into it.

    Jesus Christ this gets repetitive.

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  15. and by the way this album is intended for younger audiences. She’s targeting her own fans right now.
    In fact don’t call them fans. Call them followers.

    They follow her whatever she says and if they feel like shit over being born a particular way then there’s nothing better than someone you idolize telling you that you’re great for who you are.

    Even adults realize that, and take their kids to her R-rated concert. No shit comes out of her mouth.

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  16. Hi, Elie.

    I just stumbled upon your blog via Google because I was very curious to ear what music critics have to say about Gaga’s The Edge of Glory.

    Now while I am a super huge Lady Gaga fan, I am not here to argue with your critic.
    I’m telling you, after being in an internet legion of rabid Gaga fans, it’s nice to hear an honest critic from a non-fan for a change.

    Let’s focus on the music here. It stings a bit because the question, “Has Lady Gaga lost her touch?” is a legitimate one. The fact that you are asking this simply means that even non-fans like you, “kind of” expect her to bring something “refreshing, genius-sounding, albeit unoriginal” to the bland pop music landscape because you know that she is beyond capable of it, as evidenced by her past (as you’ve said, good quality-wise) hits.

    It’s just that in your opinion, her recent hits (Born This Way, Judas, and I’m even betting, Alejandro), “something” was missing. Unlike her past hits, it’s as if these songs relied more on the controversy than the music itself. I take it that it happened again with The Edge of Glory for you, because while it was less controversial and has the music, the “something” was gone. I dare to pinpoint that that “something” was the fresh albeit, again, unoriginal sound and the fun of a dance record – Lady Gaga’s strength. It’s not that she has lost touch, but it’s just that she raised the bar so high.

    Though I think that is essential to do know the story and the whatnots behind a record first before making reviews, it is also as important to know that at the end of the day, THIS IS JUST POP MUSIC, something that as much as possible be understood easy and need not be taken too seriously. You couldn’t be more right in that.

    But I respectfully disagree with you when you said that most of her songs are written in a way that it will serve as a vehicle for her shock value entertainment. Nothing is shocking with the subjects of her singles – about partying in clubs, being who you are, falling in love with a bad guy etc. It was written simply to be a pop song and perhaps, had Gaga remained a song writer, to be sung by any pop star in the world. Remember Telephone? She didn’t write it to make an excuse to wear telephone hats and to kill people at the diner – she wrote it for Britney Spears (girl even recorded it, see leaks). I think the shock entertainment comes later on.

    To end this looong post, I see how much of a “Stefani” fan you are. I’m not sure if you have already seen this youtube video but I figured you’ll like it.

    It’s a video of Lady Gaga singing Captivated. Not Stefani, but still. 

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  17. Pingback: Hair (Single Review) – Lady Gaga « A Separate State of Mind

  18. Pingback: Born This Way (Album Review) – Lady Gaga « A Separate State of Mind

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