Lady GaGa’s third (yes, third — Monster was not an EP) studio album is due out early next year. The star herself has had no problems hyping up the project (“It’s my greatest work yet”; “an anthem for the new decade”), and now her partner-in-crime, RedOne, is doing a little hyping of his own.
“It’s going to be shocking, shocking, shocking!” RedOne tells Billboard.
The producer –who has helmed just two tracks from the new album– has promised that he and GaGa won’t be straying too far from their winning formula (ugh), but will still be trying to show growth and an evolution in their sound (yay).
“You never want to go too far from your brand — people love you for a reason. But we still want to give them something with a kick, something that makes them say, ‘Oh my God! We didn’t expect this!’
“When you heard ‘Bad Romance’ after ‘Poker Face,’ it was like the best thing you’ve ever heard,” he continues. “We want that type of reaction. I think that’s part of my job and her job — to keep her evolving. “
An interesting sentiment, but also a worrying one. “Bad Romance” can be best described as “Poker Face” on steroids, but do we really need yet another re-hash of “Poker Face”? RedOne’s current frame of mind does not seem to be a good one. Further on in the Billboard interview, he admits that it was he who advised GaGa to make her music more “mainstream” sounding back when they were recording The Fame.
“It was really good musically but it was a bit too left. I asked her if we could take it more to the middle, and she said, ‘I’m open. Let’s do it,’” recalled RedOne of their early Fame sessions.
Another worrying sign of RedOne’s love of all things formulaic are comments that he recently made to BBC News.
“When you see everyone singing along to something – that’s the goal. You know that the song is good. Especially in countries that don’t speak English.”
BBC: Is that why so many of your songs use nonsense words – like the “ra, ra, ra” refrain in Bad Romance?
“Of course. It’s the same with “ma ma ma ma” in Poker Face. Everything is a hook.”
Luckily, there’s some light at the end of the tunnel. According to RedOne, he’s encouraged GaGa to work with other producers for her third album. The reason seems to be that he feels other producers have taken his trademark sound (he refuses to name who exactly), and he wants GaGa to stay ahead of the pack, sonically speaking.
Red One only got two tracks on the new disc. He has crafted some definite pop classics for GaGa, but an artist of her caliber needs to grow and evolve, and judging by RedOne’s recent comments, her may not be the man to help her do it. RedOne has yet to prove whether he can do that or not, especially with his love of all things mainstream and radio-friendly
“We try to take the sound and make it bigger and more interesting every time,” he says. “And every time and era has its sound; you always want to be the first to jump on it.”