Radio Rant: Far East Movement – Rocketeer

Hello all, and welcome back for another Radio Rant. Now, I’ll be honest; I didn’t actually come prepared this week. Usually I head in with something lined up, but for the first time since November, I got nothin’. So I’ve been informed that today, we’re experiencing a change of pace. Instead of music, I’ll be reviewing the 1991 movie The Rocketeer, starring Billy Campbell and Jennifer Connelly.

The Rocketeer is perhaps one of the least famous superhero movies out there. Based on the 1980’s-created-but-1930’s-set comic of the same name, The Rocketeer was a rarity in what we expect from superhero flicks; the critics generally liked it, citing the visuals, style, and outright fun of the movie, yet it’s considered a box office bomb and has been swept under the rug. Did Proto-Iron Man really suck? Well, let’s find out!

Actually, I’ve just been informed that there was a miscommunication. This week, I’ll be looking at the song “Rocketeer”. Well, ok. Who’s it by?

Oh, screw this. Sorry, do I sound irritated? Far East Movement’s previous/first hit, “Like a G6” was bad enough to land the #2 spot on my Worst of 2010 list, so I’m not exactly thrilled to deal with the follow-up. But hell, it’s this or “Black and Yellow”, so I’ll take what I can get. Maybe it’ll be about the movie.

Nope, instead “Rocketeer” is vaguely a love jam. This “girl” is so lovely that she makes Far East Movement fly like a G6 rocketeer, because apparently, feeling fly is all Far East Movement knows how to do. That and be generic. Quiz time: Besides “Sober girls around me they be ackin’ like they drunk”, name two lines from the verses in “Like a G6” from memory. You know the song got beaten into you enough times for one or two to stick, out with it.

What?

Nothing?

Oh, right, because the verse in “Like a G6” were absolutely forgettable. And so are they in “Rocketeer”. There’s three different verses by three different members of the group, but they’re all pretty similarly bland and bad. Not a single line stands out, and after months of being free of it, Auto-Tune rears its ugly head again. With three people putting together lyrics, what have we got here?

-“Where we go we don’t need roads, roads” Is that right, Doc Brown?

“Just say the words and we outta here, here/Hold my hand if you feeling scared, scared/We flying up, up outta here” You had to rhyme “here” with “here”? And what’s with the stutter?

“Baby, we can stay fly like a G6” Yep, because Far East Movement aren’t above the complete lameness of referencing their own, awful songs. May you carry the curse of that thing for forever, boys.

“Go on the next level, Super Mario” You’re not on Young Money, you don’t a free pass on the “not using ‘like'” thing. Hell, even they don’t deserve that. Also, you can’t pretend to be cool and “fly” and then drop a Super Mario reference.

-“I hope this works out, cardio” That…that’s just a poorly put together statement. That’s “I got her, grocery bag” bad.

Now, before you think that I’ve totally shut down “Rocketeer”, the chorus is pretty nice. Written by Bruno Mars and sang by Ryan “New entry in unfortunate last names” Tedder of OneRepublic, who turns in a decent performance, although that’s probably more the melody than him. And the production, tagteamed by Stereotypes and The Smeezingtons (the latter can take credit for “Nothin’ On You”, “Right Round”, and “Fuck You!”) is a fantastic blend of scattered synths grounded by piano chords and a strong and steady beat. It’s very pretty, very good music.

“Rocketeer” still kind of fluctuates for me. The production’s the best part about it, and the chorus isn’t lacking, either. But the credited artist has such an empty presence on the song that it drags the entire project down. It’s not as bad as “Like a G6”, but then again, “better than ‘Like a G6′” is a bar lower enough to step over. But still, I suppose there’s worse.

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About bgibs122

I enjoy music and music culture; I hope you do, too.
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