[Editor's note: Why This Song Sucks determines why particular tracks blow using science. It appears on West Coast Sound every Wednesday.]
Song: Beyonce's “Party” featuring J. Cole
History: “Party” is the fourth single from Beyonce's fourth studio album, 4. That's three fours in a row, bro. Three. That seems excessive, right? Like, did Beyonce, the good Christian girl that she is, stumble into some Illumanti literature that Jay left out, and want to speak on it but can't because, duh, that's exactly what that albino in the robe (Kanye West, to extend the analogy) is waiting for? The answer: Yes, of course.
Research revealed the following, which seems awfully ominous (play the clip while you read; it helps):
Jesus had four disciples that died when they were 44-year-olds. Also, the translation for the village Jesus was from is “Fournia.” Also, also, the manger Jesus was born in was the fourth from the left, and everyone knows that the left isn't right and that “right” is a synonym for correct and HOLY SHIT: JESUS WASN'T RIGHT?! … THE COUNCIL OF NICEA! … SOME OLD PAINTINGS! … THAT WEIRD THING STUCK IN PAUL BETTANY'S LEG! … OH. MY. GOD: BEYONCE IS TRYING TO TAKE DOWN THE VATICAN!? Or, er, wait.
… eh, nope, never mind.
None of that's true. Fuck. Sorry. It's just a lot of fours.
As a consolation, Kanye West creates the awful phrase “swagu*”
*Note: Not much is revealed about the mysterious swagu, beyond if you have it, it is likely dripping.
Atmospherics: “Party” is a synthesized reproduction of early '90s pop (even though it's built up from Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh's 1985 world bender “La Di Da Di”), and that's almost always fun, but here it's way too self-aware, which pretty much sucks out all the knee-jerk fun it should possess. Also, for some bizarre reason, J. Cole was brought in to replace Andre 3000, which is kind of like bringing in Sasha Vujacic for Kobe Bryant. Comparatively, Andre crushed Cole.
Scientific Analysis: Beyonce is a magnanimous personality, an overwhelming force. She's barely even human anymore, really. One time, I saw Kelly Rowland walk into a place in Houston that specialized in selling crawfish. People looked up, but nobody moved. Because Kelly Rowland still seems human. That shit could never happen with Beyonce. Beyonce doesn't go to buy her own crawfish. That'd be like Target going to buy crawfish. Beyonce is a brand.
And (I suppose) in this video, we're supposed to see that maybe she isn't above everyone else. It's (probably) supposed to show how Beyonce, queen of music videos, can be carefree and spontaneous and accessible and doesn't need elaborate dance numbers and Audrey Hepburn wigs to be interesting. But mostly, she just looks how people look when they overlaugh at something. And kind of insane. Some screenshots of things she and her friends apparently do when they party.
1. Wear fanny packs but not pants.
If you show up to a party and Steve the party host opens the door wearing a fanny pack but no pants, how quickly do you leave? Super, that's how quick. That's pretty much how every porno started up until about 1994.
2. Blow bubbles while getting her hair done.
Hairdresser: Okay, B. So the color should be set in about 20 minutes. Need anything?
Beyonce: Um … yes. Bubbles.
Hairdresser: Uh, what?
Beyonce: Bubbles. You know, to blow. Duh.
3. Drink from the water hose.
This one isn't so strange, I suppose. It's just kind of weird. J. Cole shows up later in a $200,000 car. He couldn't buy some goddamn Dr. Pepper?
4. Sit on white people.
5. Stand on old trucks and wave.
Most things > J. Cole.
6. Mow the lawn at night wearing a yellow fur coat and underwear.
Director: We really want to try to make you look like just an average girl.
Beyonce: Okay, okay. Got it.
Director: So for this next shot, it's night, you're at the party. What's your first instin–
Beyonce: TO MOW THE LAWN! IN A FUR COAT! AND NO PANTS!
Director: That's seriously what you think people do?
Beyonce: Yes. They don't?
Director: Nailed it. Great job, B.
(I) Beyonce is not trying to take down the Vatican.
(II) Swagu, while apparently coveted, is messy.
(III) Andre 3000 accidentally proved that J. Cole is only an average rapper.
(IV) Kelly Rowland enjoys crawfish.