Rihanna – Disturbia

First Hit #1: August 23, 2008

Is this an artistically justified use of bad autotune? While it’s a mostly predictable club banger, the lyrics are kind of a vague encroaching insanity – and Giallo references, which are kind of neat to see on contemporary hit radio – and there’s a seeming desire to have a somewhat inhuman aspect to the performance. While most autotune is deployed because it’s trendy, in this particular song it feels a bit more than that. It’s something that’s deliberate, deployed to robot up Rihanna, who can normally sing just fine and sounds much better without it. But a normal vocal would seem out of place here, a song that tries to at least spice up the charts a little with a mild horror lyric and some clever little touches to make it complete.

It’s still not a good sound, and I still can’t wait until it disappears entirely, but I can at least understand why it was used on this song.

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One Response to Rihanna – Disturbia

  1. musicosity1 says:

    The lyrics live up to their name. I like the music, which has an 80s melodicity, but the autotune is both unnecessary and ugly. The vi-I-V-IV chord progression puts a slightly different spin on the same-old-same-old.

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