I've been watching some videos on Yahoo lately. I've noticed that everyone from Christina Aguilera to AJ & Aly to Britney Spears to Jennifer Lopez to the Pussycat Dolls to (God help me) Paris Hilton seem to be going in for "processed" vocals these days. Now, I think in the case of Ms. Hilton, this was likely production used to cover any imperfections in her voice. As for the others, I think this is a trend that's been hanging around since the turn of the millennium (thanks Cher for "I Believe") that has now come to the fore.
But I have to wonder... does the iPod have something to do with all this? We listen to music with some pretty crappy fidelity these days. That's been true in the past to a certain extent (anyone remember 9 volt hand-held transistor radios and crappy car radios?), but now it seems that the main music delivery vehicles (the iPod and the Internet) seem to promote compressing the hell out of the music. And maybe "processed" vocals are just a little bit extra of the character of the delivery medium?
Or it just could be that you don't need to sing well in the post MTV world... you just need to have tight abs, a big bust, and look good in a pair of pants so tight that they look poured on.
*sigh* Great, now I can't get "Potential Breakup Song" out of my head. I think it's got an interesting late-50's Neil Sedaka-type Brill Building hook... especially across the bridge. The fact that I kind of like the song drives me insane though; AJ & Aly were evidently raised "Christian" and were not aware that the "theory" of evolution is taught in public schools.
on 2007-09-12 at 10:35 p.m.
The Wayback Machine - To Infinity And Beyond