[Editor's note: Why This Song Sucks determines why particular tracks blow using science. It appears on West Coast Sound every Wednesday.]
Song: One Direction's “What Makes You Beautiful”
History: “What Makes You Beautiful” is the first single from UK boy band supreme, One Direction. (Note: I'm not certain which direction One Direction point. Probably towards Shitsville would be my guess.) It's been in Billboard's Top 10 for the last eleven weeks, which is pretty remarkable considering none of the five boys in the group know how to sing. So way to go, World. You got it.
Atmospherics: Pop sensibility all out the balls; plucky plucks; preteenagery hand claps.
Scientific Analysis: Let's ignore that nobody in One Direction, a boy band that sings, actually knows how to sing. Also, let's ignore that nobody in the group dances, which, measured in kind, should be no less troublesome than a basketball team that doesn't know how to dribble, shoot or pass. And let's ignore that total dick move fake out at the beginning where they lift the incredibly exhilarating first beats of “Summer Nights” from Grease.
Instead, an anecdote that I wish was about someone that wasn't me, or that was at least a little more creative:
Generally, the way this column works is: I find a song to write about, listen to it over and over and over again, then write about it. This all usually takes place Monday nights between 8:45 and 11:45, depending on (a) whether my sons have been hobgoblins of terror or just regular run-of-the-mill hobgoblins (the former necessitates a later start time, generally due to me having to talk myself into not murdering everyone in the house because HOLY FUCK HOW MANY TIMES CAN YOU TELL ONE KID TO STOP PUTTING THE REMOTE CONTROL IN THE FRIDGE); and (b) if there is something else pressing that needs my immediate attention, like trying to throw marshmallows into a hat across the room or sending tweets to Drake asking him if he'd like to hang out and maybe play some XBOX 360 and just be a real chillwave bro with me for a little while.
For this one, things were running efficiently. Minus a few minutes dealing with Ceiling Frog*, everything appeared proper. But then I threw up in the shower and I knew that this song was no good.
I listened to the song probably eight times. Then I started feeling nauseous. Then I said, “Well, a shower will probably fix this.” Then I got in the shower. Then I said, “This was not a good idea.” Then I stood there confused looking at vomit on my feet, which is a place I'd never previously seen it.
Have you ever thrown up in the shower before? It's a baffling experience. The two are just so counterproductive to one another. It's like masturbating while attending church. I suppose there are less convenient places for it to happen (Bank of America, for one, or maybe a New Boyz concert), but that doesn't make it less bizarre.
Shower vomit is definitely not what makes me beautiful.
*An Aside From Within The Anecdote:
Ceiling Frog actually started out named Sticky Frog. He's one of those sticky toys you buy for $0.50 out of those quarter machines at the grocery store. Boy A got him three days ago. He was super pumped. He came home, began blabbering about how much he loved Sticky Frog, then promptly shot it towards our 10' high ceiling. It stuck there. And it didn't budge. It stayed there all 72 of those hours, never once even flinching.
Monday evening, after I couldn't look at it anymore, I used a broom and a chair and my ultimate dad powers to work it free. It took longer than I'd like to admit, but that's not the point. I got it down, then handed it to A and said, “Go clean it off in the sink and then you can play with it.” He was ecstatic. I don't imagine a dad is any more joyous when his kidnapped child has been returned to him. He went to clean it, came running back, then shouted, “Now it won't stick,” AND THEN THAT MOTHERFUCKER THREW IT RIGHT BACK TO THE CEILING. Gah.
(I) Earlier that same Monday evening that I wrote this, I also ate a couple handfuls of uncovered cake I'd left sitting on the kitchen island a few days. That might be worth mentioning, I suppose.
(II) No joke, this song was released on September 11, 2011, the ten-year anniversary of one of the worst acts of terrorism ever perpetrated on the United States of America. The Brits just won't let us live, man.
(III) Bloodsport is just about the best of all.