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Crystal, Beware

Over the years I’ve been a great fan of American Idol. And for me it came to fruition with Adam Lambert. Most every week he blew my mind and I’m saying that talking about a fucking talent show on network TV – for the most part lots of fun and silliness, but over time ultimately artistically void. Some stars were made by it, but nothing that would have come within a million miles of my musical radar had they not been on the show. But Adam Lambert was different. He grabbed hold of the show and made it his own. You could see it in the eyes of the judges, there was a sense – no matter if they liked it or not – that they were no longer the judges at all. Maybe because you cannot judge someone who is going on about their own way, not despite you, but despite anything. “This is who I am and you can judge or not. Whatever.”

So he doesn’t win, and that’s no surprise; in fact, that is just what you’d expect. It’s a popularity contest for the love of god and can we trust art to popular vote? Of course not. It’s certainly valid in what it proves, but what it proves is entirely debatable.

But then with all that seeming integrity behind him, he led with his album For Your Entertainment. An homage apparently to the most popular pop songwriters and whatever dreck they’ll throw together for him right quick. A complete reversal of his old self – and for the love of god, his old self was boldly defined right there in the middle of the machine, where most “artists” fold like a pair of deuces. And yet now he becomes part of the machine and creates an album that so reeks of Lady Gagarbage that it stinks, horribly. Waste. Of talent.

He had an almost Freddie Mercury voice leading him. Had he found a partner songwriter and gathered a band and took his time and made an amazing record, he might have … might have what? Blew my mind. But then again who cares what blows my mind. I only hope he cares about people’s minds enough to reverse a bit, and blow em right quick. That Idol iron is only hot for so long.

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