Wednesday, September 12, 2007

MTV, the Great Enabler

Over a decade ago, Beck put to music the precise feeling I get when I think about Sunday night's bizzaro MTV Video Music Awards. As his first official release on Flipside Records, "MTV Makes Me Want To Smoke Crack" tidily encapsulates how most music lovers have come to regard the station. I originally thought the song was a snide response to fears about youth corruption, but the truth is that Beck was just plain pissed off that his peers (especially the flakes that worked with him at the video store) bought into the squeaky clean MTV image. It's almost too perfect that these observations, as featured in "Loser," helped him get a spot in the video lineup a few years later.

I love those videos/ I watch them all day/ And I plug 'em in my eyballs... hey!/
And the colors are nice and the pictures are nice/ And the girls are nice, everything's so nice

I like to think that with the recording of "MTV" he had a vision of a future in which the station-heads attempted to re-invigorate the once lucrative career of Britney Spears by parading her ample figure on stage in a diamond-studded bikini. That’s why MTV makes me want to smoke crack.

Beck -- MTV Makes Me Want To Smoke Crack (unfortunately, this version does not include the goof-ball jazz lounge coda that can be found on a later release)


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