It’s really easy to make fun of dance music. The French brand of Spitting Image puppets have made superstar David Guetta a common target, but the Norwegians seem to be having the most fun, with the Kollektivet2 slaughtering Swedish House Mafia as Scandinavian Techno Dance Society and the brothers Ylvis making the dubstep musical ‘Someone Like Me.’ This past week, another recent bit by Ylvis has become as viral as “Gangnam Style” – a children’s song called “The Fox.” It’s clearly satire, mocking the inane lyrics and the standard production sounds and effects heard in just about every dance-pop record (do we see a Ke$ha or will.i.am collab in the near future…). There’s even one bit which seems inspired by the insipid Crazy Frog from 2005. For a bit of mindless fun, check out “The Fox” and don’t be surprised if kindergarten kids start dancing to it for their holiday recitals.
Like the rest of the world, we first heard about KAPTN when Miley Cyrus got wild in his “Juice” video – a slowed down/weed-ed out take of Psy/LMFAO electro hip-pop. Going even more into the novelty direction, the Los Angeles rapper has reimagined the classic “I Love Lucy” characters as alcohol-fueled party people. The track has so many hooks that it could fuel its own drinking game: elements of Modjo-esque disco house, trap-like drum fills, the title “Ricky Ricardo” spoken in a similar effect as DuckSauce’s “Barbara Streisand,” and the soca-esque “she’ll be back” all combined for a fun and pervertedly playful hip-hop/house hybrid jam. In this era of ubiquitous product placements, you’ve got to love that he name checks “Johnson & Johnson” baby powder, and if it’s a paid placement, then corporate America really is getting hip on how to reach the new generation of young consumers.
So if a Korean rapper can start a dance craze, how about an African porridge? Azonto is a rhythmic dance style from Ghana that mimics everyday activities (household cleaning, driving, praying, exercising) with knee, hip, and body movements. The West African dance is showcased in the new track by Afrikan Boy “Amala Azonto” which incorporates the making of Amala, a thick porridge made from yams (sweet potatoes). The track, made by Delirious, is an energetic Afrobeat rhythm – if you remember “Turn Me On” by Kevin Lyttle, pitch it up plus 10 for an idea. The lyrics are playfully sexual with pickup lines interspersed with historical references. The yam is definitely symbolic of the male anatomy. The video continues the humorous premise, set as a cooking show with the perfect recipe for cooking up Amalo – dancing and frolicking ensues. With culture-centric tracks like “Rap Des Armas” and “Gangnam Style” having broken big on the club and mainstream scene around the world, it’s quite possible that the catchy “Amala Azonto” might be next.