Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti - Mature Themes (2 stars)

Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti - Mature Themes

(4AD)

Attempt to be transgressive comes across as creepy and misogynistic

Mature Themes? Hardly. Ariel Pink’s latest offers a callow take on gender and sexuality. Pink seems to think that talking about ‘beta male revenge’ (chicks dig ‘sensitive’ guys, runs the sleazy logic) and singing about being a ‘lesbian’ constitutes some radical act of genderfucking, and this wrong-headedness is compounded by his use of transphobic language (‘bogus shemales on meth’ anyone?) and the misogyny, however ironic, of tracks like the charmless Kraftwerk rip-off ‘Symphony of the Nymph’.

Far from being transgressive, Pink’s sweaty-palmed evocations of alternative LA just come across as creepy. As for the music, it’s irritatingly arch, lacking the memorable tunes of previous albums, with all the punch taken out of Haunted Graffiti’s sophisticated Hall & Oates-go-synthpop grooves.

Elsewhere on the web

Comments

1. As the Fascist Word Police build their case11 Aug 2012, 12:46pm Report

I don;t even know who this band is, but was struck by the title. A few points:
1. Everyone who disagrees with extreme radical feminism is not a misogynist
2.'chicks' do dig sensitive guys - Oprah and every television network, Sex and the City episode writer and David Hasselhoff promoter has made a career out of it.
3. Singing about a lesbian - how dare he/they?
4. 'Bogus shemales on meth' - erm, sorry but has anyone ever actually been to say, the Castro, Soho, or Chelsea in NYC? Or a gay pride march for that matter?

If we get to a place, (probably already there), where no one can utter a word abotu what they see, good music or bad, were one step away from Sieg Heil.

Grow up List, you're not a social reform platform.

2. Stewart Smith11 Aug 2012, 8:59pm Report

A few points:

1. All your points are strawmen arguments which deliberately misread the review.
2. Ah yes, the dreaded 'extreme radical feminism'. Those women have gone too far! Us poor men are now the second sex etc etc. That argument so clearly such utter bullshit it's not even worth refuting. And tends to be made by misogynists. Who'd a thunk it?
3. Of course there's nothing inherently wrong Singing about lesbians
4. I was taking issue with the transphobic term 'shemale' duh.

I'm not interested in banning words or this record, but as a member of a free society and a critic I'm entitled to call people out on their misogyny/transphobia etc. But hey, use this review of a band you've never even heard of to launch your saddo troll screeds about how feminism has gone too far and political correctness equates to fascism...

RSS feed of these comments