Originally Posted by demonrail666
Yeah, one of the best things about pop is that it cuts through all that. You judge it solely on its end result, not how it got there. 90% of pop stars are really just celebrities, with a marketable look and personality.
Right. When it was just Britney and Backstreet Boys, and the music was terrible and uninteresting, and pop and hip-hop/R&B production had not yet fully melded, it was easier to write those kids off because not only were they uninteresting, but the music was completely uninspired.
Aaliyah and Timbaland and Missy Elliot (and also Timbaland) helped this. Lauryn Hill helped this. Etc., etc. And as a result we can bob our heads to undeniably catchy Taylor Swift songs (some of them really are undeniable.. "Bad Blood" is an earworm and a half), and critics can praise Beyoncé albums because the end result is powerful and pretty goddamn consistently culturally relevant, even if it's not the best shit out.
There seems to be a correlation between pop becoming critically viable ("respectable") and indie rock going the way of the dinosaur. Makes me think we might be in store for a new version of "punk," though what it might look like I can't even begin to guess.