How did we, as a society, allow this to happen? The post-Glee Broadway-ization of contemporary pop has culminated in this chart-topping duo, whose goofy shtick is to decontextualize sounds from other genres until they're utterly meaningless. On Karmin's debut full-length, singer Amy Heidemann approximates Flo Rida-style pop, appropriates familiar flows from Nicki Minaj and milks two-decade-old hip-hop clichés about getting twisted on Belvedere. Worst of all is "Gasoline," where the pair interpolate a reggae chorus into a trap beat, harmonizing happily on lyrics that make arson sound like a standard church activity. If it all burns down, maybe we deserve it.
From The Archives Issue 1206: April 10, 2014