Same Song, Different Tune

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Bitter breakup tunes get a pop makeover.

Travel back with me to the mid-nineties. Two women, jilted by love, take to the airwaves with their emotional tales—Alanis Morissette with Jagged Little Pill and Fiona Apple with Tidal. Between aggressive guitar and piano production respectively, the pair get put into the “angry women” music corner, labeled cynical, scorned, and bitter.

Fast forward to present day. Another two chanteuses, their stories just as dark and seething, but something is different. Lily Allen’s Alright, Still (out last year) and Kate Nash’s newly released Made of Bricks, infuse carefree sunshine cheer into their man rants. Their British accents are wrapped in melodic sugar pop so sweet, you almost miss the biting lyrics, like “But you were f**king that girl next door” or “What are you being a d**khead for?” The formula works—the two have been crowned pop princesses despite their potty mouths.

So what’s the lesson ladies? Smile, adopt phrases like daft and bugger, and say what you will. It seems that way, nobody puts baby in the corner.

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