As much the Four Evangelists as they are the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Britney Spears and Lady Gaga – our proud and prestigious pillars of Pop – stood tall and held rapturous court this year as the cause and cure for our ailing culture…
Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John… Jay, Ye, Britney, and Gaga: these four testified in an entirely new way on behalf of the perceived social savior. They worship the abstract – The Throne, The Fame, The Monster, The Femme Fatale – whatever it is they boast on behalf of – and simultaneously battle against – is irrelevant, as that vice and vise is always internal first. They are their own Christs and Anti-Christs.
The Throne is postcolonial, it is secular, and so very sacred and religious… it bows before the masses and any true messiah, as much as it blasphemes with every waking breath.
In this time of unparalleled turmoil, tumult, wealth, weariness, fatigue, fortune, spectral unions within innumerably layered divisions, The Throne articulates body, soul, rhythm, and rhyme what it means to be alive right now. Beyond any shadow of a doubt these four human institutions embody contemporary royalty. They are the belly of the beast, they are the Good Word on the street, they are ingrained in society, and somehow detached, but never removed, from the lips of any prep or priest: they are the scribes which will tell the history of our generation…
This former generation of red herrings has evolved a bit, traded in flippers for boots, grabbed themselves up by the straps, and stepped onto dry land… Steve Jobs sold you an Apple, and with that first gigabyte this consumer culture fell from grace, but it was okay – because we gained knowledge… we gained that carnal knowledge of ourselves… we tasted that luxury, that divine ability to know and have everything – virtually – without having anything at all in reality… we lived in this spectacular place of nothingness, we live now in a cloud… everything became so clean, so pristine, so lily white, and yet so bleakly trademarked beige… but lo and behold we were taken back to the depths… we moved Eastward again, to Chicago, to Kentwood, to Marcy, to Manhattan… we moved away from the machines… we did not want to be part of those machines, we wanted the machines to be part of we… we had no where to unplug though… and then… we decided Pop Music would Never Be Low Brow, we decided we would no longer mail it in… we decided to put a nail in the coffin of that cloud culture… Ignorance is no longer bliss – ignorance is a myth… and within that magnificent mythology lies the future – from plastic to perilous to pre-eminent… from ordinary to organic… from wired:
… to weathered
What does any of this mean? What does anything ever mean? It means what you make of it… and here we have four broken barons and baronesses… We have four apostles of the apopcalypse: Matthew the Hova – the former tax collector turned Savior’s scribe, the former dealer turned voice of the Biblical business, man; Mark the Kanye – the follower of Peter, the son of the Roc boy; Luke the Spears – a figure of sacrifice, service and strength… representing the sacrificial Passion and Crucifixion, the simultaneous deification through self-denial; John… and John the Gaga – on one hand, the youngest of them all, the metamouthpiece, the supernatural scribe, thee who writes into fruition the human capability to transcend the physical world in an unyielding move towards divinity, on the other, “The gospel of Gaga, as told in Born This Way, goes something like this: ‘Humanity will be damned by its own self-doubt until Gaga the Savior delivers us with the might of her music.'” #ew It means we’re riding in on the backs of our Four Evangelists of the Apopcalypse – it means the Good Word Goon Squad never beasted so bad.
For twelve months… twelve, months – The Throne reigned supreme this year. From January through December, the sun never set on the crown #splendidisolation.
The Throne does not care about the now, because this is then, and they’re on to the next one. The Throne owns Pop Cultural capital – period. They are not specialists, but polymaths of Pop.
Counterfeit lives require pseudo-justification… you can’t quantify The Throne’s worth, thus they are disqualified from peasantries.
“We’re going to stick to one song, and one song only.” This year the throne came home – and by “home,” I mean industry royalty reflected “those ones.” You know… the ones who shouldn’t have been here at all – The Help that helped themselves to a seat at the table. When banks are broke, the broke make bank #namely. At this juncture, it’s safe to say, we’re all slaves to the throne… some of us, say it better than others #namelythus That said, it’s safer to say we’re all slaves to a throne of indentured servants, who may or may not even belong at said royal table… #kanyeshrugsandotherthugs
We have Hov and Yeezy, both the bumrusher and the bumrushed from 2009 – back with a vengeance. We have Britney #thatstearsnotglitter Spears – forever back from 2007, off the heels of 2008‘s reign, and still… still letting you hold it against her that she allowed you to hold her down for so long. Britney, Kanye, and Jay-Z: three the “Parisian, please” way. Hailing from Los Angeles by way of Kentwood, Southside Chicago by way of Atlanta, and Manhattan by way of Marcy – these three are why you lock your doors at night, why Tipper brought Parental Advisory labels to light, and the embodiment of Naggers in Paris, chimps on the Champs, the low-brow to which you cow-tow #taxbreakandpaytribute – the American definition of fright. Hov balled so hard, he’s shocked too; Britney bald so hard, she cut the crew; Yeezy walled so hard, he throned you – all supposed to be locked up, too – if you escaped what they escaped: you’d be in your house getting throwned out too. Yet… still all slaves to the throne. All three are slaves to their own power, their own success, and therein lies the throne of indentured servitude… it is the detachment, the ego, the gold, the glitz, the glam, the superhuman persona keeping the hierarchy from humanity that is their debt. Abstract theory notwithstanding, the blood of the hustler, the blood of the bayou, the blood of the college dropout is what fuels the throne… and in that reality – the lasting pantheon of social prominence is a place none of those kings or queens will ever feel at home – for everything else: there’s making lies truths.
And, naturally, Lady Gaga emerges as the sonic second-coming of the Sans-culottes – pants, politics, and Pop, tears and hegemonic fears on tap: Á votre santé, Watergate.
What Wall Street was literally to capitalism, Paris was symbolically to the creative cultural class this year… #getoccupied #nagon They were not just art for Michelangelo to carve, he could never rewrite the agro of their furied hearts… so, they waited on mountaintops in Paris cold … #everybloodylovesmary #workitblackjesus … and strutted into Paris Fashion Week – runway workhorses:
Kanye West – DW S/S 2012 Collection at Paris Fashion Week 2011
For The Throne, Paris was the hallowed mirrored hall to which they would see themselves infinitely reflected upon royalty, and to which they would call home – against any, other, and all wishes.
Take me, Paris. I am; we are Paris. Jesus is the new black. I am quiet; I am strong. Amen. Welcome to Paris. It’s Fashion Week. We are Paris.
Welcome to the world’s nightmare: hold it against me – we about to go H.A.M on Grey Poupon. Bourgie girl, grab her hand, f-ck that – she don’t wanna dance; excuse my French, but I’m in France… I’m just saying: when in Rome #orparis
Watch This Space: The Throne: because egregious is the new black. #amen