Review: Dirty Computer by Janelle Monáe

珍妮尔·蒙恩花了很多年时间用隐喻和符号来表达自己。By deciding to use pieces of herself this time,她创造了迄今为止最具影响力的记录。
Author:
Publish date:
Updated on

We all look to role models for strength of conviction,包括像珍妮尔·蒙伊这样的坏蛋。In the lead up to her new record,Monáe lost two role models: one suddenly and tragically,Prince,her mentor.The other she chose to retire,a Miss Cindi Mayweather,安卓弥赛亚Metropolis;The Archandroid,andThe Electric Lady.Both played major parts in the cultivation of Monáe's sound and aesthetic,and yet she decided to forge ahead with her new career aspirations without their direct help.Instead,她利用他们的指导帮助自己进入了一个新的时代,珍妮尔·蒙耶,我们有幸见证。

After spending 2015 on all the best records (Ego Death,Surf,andArt Angels),2016年最佳影片(Hidden Figures,Moonlight),and 2017 at functions like the Women's March,Monáe returns to the stage we all know her from,this time as herself,我们以前从未见过的角色。

Tech motifs appear all across Monáe's now 15-year career,an artistic flourish she used to share her visions while simultaneously overshadowing parts of herself she'd rather hide.After spending over a decade within this mainframe,she at last breaks free of its confines;结果是肮脏的电脑,whose title speaks to the human condition as much as it does the digital age.A person,一种生物机器,experiences upgrades,毛病,最终,like all mechanisms,system failure.Monáe views this neither as a benevolence or a curse,more so as a subject worth studying and celebrating.

The title track belies its grimy connotation with a set of lofty harmonies,courtesy of Brian Wilson,one of the many actual icons who lend their talents to Monáe's latest.For all its new ideas and star-studded features which range from Prince to Zoe Kravitz,肮脏的电脑stays true to Monáe's roots in more ways than one.Longtime collaborators Deep Cotton,who worked with Monáe onThe Auditionand underratedIdlewild果酱,"Call the Law",have their fingers in many of the album's tracks.Because of this Monáe wields new genres and motifs in ways that remain familiar to her listeners.

An especially important quality considering肮脏的电脑is one of the most high-profile accounts of pansexuality in main188金博宝备用stream media,from a Black woman no less.It champions both Monáe and the identity she embraces,an identity which receives visibility and a new idol in one fell swoop.Naturally,an idol as talented as Monáe wears this identity proudly,imbuing it with funk and power pop to match her confidence.

Though it dissects insecurities and shortcomings as much as it does success,肮脏的电脑unabashedly refuses to downplay or apologize for its behavior."Take a Byte","Pynk",and "Don't Judge Me" use metaphors practically as explicit as the subjects they describe,while "Django Jane" and "I Like That" proudly commemorate Black women and individuality,respectively.She even turns the threat of annihilation into one of arousal on the Zoe Kravitz-assisted "Screwed",rhyming "rock ‘n roll" with "birth control" and daring you to say something about it.

With this forthright attitude comes fresh ways for Monáe to play on subject matters.Lines such as "take a byte",direct in its words,take on all sort of meaning in the CPU of肮脏的电脑: it says把我吃掉as much as it saysAuthorize this app so I can play Candy Crush,the chord descent making the line sound sensual and just a little tongue-in-cheek.

This candor comes with a minor cost in that sometimes肮脏的电脑will often hit you over the head with obvious metaphors and sometimes tired sentiments."I Got The Juice" for all its upbeat fun,is a repetitive and relatively cliched song,even if it falls outside Monáe's usual repertoire.And for all its sonic glory,“让我感觉到”中的几个词组的转换和歌曲的简单吸引概念一样简单。

That all said,the frankness of肮脏的电脑may at times register as corny,but never feels weak or dishonest.Stevie Wonder puts it well in "Stevie's Dream",说“不要让你的表情,even of anger/Be confused or misconstrued." For the most part,even when it plays in double entendres,肮脏的电脑is quite straightforward.In the emotion picture version of "Pynk",Monáe pours her heart out to Tessa Thompson in a soft yet candid interlude.它指责人们常与求爱联系在一起的羞怯,and it works wonders.

因为在一个有鲶鱼和假新闻的时代,pure old honesty comes across as a bigger surprise,and ultimately,a bigger payoff.A