Wednesday, January 05, 2005

sign o' the times

punk rock is officially dead. no, really. the latest final nail in its much-hammered coffin was the A-in-a-circle anarchy symbol adorning the drumkit for last night's execrable halftime show at the orange bowl. along with a heavy-metal country tune by trace adkins, it featured polar faux-tuff turns by american idol kelly clarkson (playing madonna in her like-a-virginal white and messy curls) and reality-show rocker ashlee simpson (black-clad and metal-studded -- obviously the whore) -- blithely doing their choreographed pop things in front of this onetime badge of rebellion turned fluffy little symbol of conformity.

some might have wept, but i think the appropriately "punk" response was to laugh -- and so i did. hmf. most people probably thought it meant "a for ashlee," anyway.

the best part? after ms. anarchy was done bellowing about how we make her wanna ... wanna ... wanna ... scream!!, the camera pulled back wide to show the stands, the announcer touted her name ... and the booing began. of course, that got cut off real quick, but there was no mistaking what was happening. unfortunately for ashlee, her problem isn't just a lack of vocal fortitude. lip-synching won't fix her biggest flaw, which is that she has absolutely no idea how to sell the material. the whole deal with these post-boy/girl-band acts is to convince us they aren't manufactured images but actually budding young artists who have a hand in making their careers and writing their songs. yet our little anarchist was just up there doing an extravagant karaoke turn. she left the distinct impression that she has absolutely no investment in her work at all. and if she doesn't, why should anyone else?

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