Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

The-Dream ft. Kanye West – Walking on the Moon

Mariah didn’t get him a hit – will old Scowly McSneer do any better?…


Jordan Sargent: Just paying my monthly fan club membership fee.

Chuck Eddy: The Police did a better “Walking On The Moon” (just like Bobbie Gentry did a better “Fancy” and the Angry Samoans did a better “Right Side Of My Brain [I Mean Mind]”), but The-Dream gets some genuine low-gravity green cheese into this one’s sound, I admit it. Still stumped by everybody’s total love affair with the album — sub-Ne-Yo falsetto, “interesting” production doo-dads, lyrics more irritating than compelling, alleged concept as much a chore to follow along with as any other concept album — but this one’s a lunar beaut until Kanye comes in. Which, ill-advisedly, brings things back down to earth.

Alfred Soto: Like Love vs Money itself, this track’s power waned after several plays. The most annoying element: the dinky organ line that coats the thing like slime. Kanye’s just-okay rap is indicative.

Anthony Miccio: Oh, Sheila! Think of Love Vs. Money as an Amnesiac-like companion to Love/Hate rather than a disappointingly familiar follow-up, and it’s easier to appreciate peaks like this for the effusive retro-futurist bubblegum they are. Bumped a notch to encourage Kanye’s abandonment of autotune.

Martin Skidmore: I like the guest verse from Kanye on this: the weak bleepy backing (is this supposed to sound SFish?) and the thin vocals from The-Dream need a bit of energy injected, and Kanye gives it a touch of momentum, albeit briefly. I can imagine this working well with a punchy vocal – Beyonce, say – but it does sound a little limp as it is.

Ian Mathers: Kanye is only ever insufferable, it just comes down to whether or not he’s likeably insufferable. Here he’s not, and The-Dream’s milquetoast little voice isn’t the best match for the bright stabs of the production during the chorus. The result is a little underwhelming and kind of a mish-mash, but still not half bad.

Hillary Brown: Yes, it’s too long, and maybe it’s too early Michael Jackson, but don’t we all want the magic of “Rock with You” back? I know I do, and this version is totally untainted by later grossness, apart from Kanye dissing books as a concept a few days ago.

Martin Kavka: In the song — perhaps a great lost Thriller b-side — a man praises a woman for unnamed skills. The video, on the other hand, portrays a mincing man with perfectly sculpted eyebrows who appears to be a refugee from some intergalactic leather bar. (Note to Hype Williams: when Mariah Carey is better at butching a guy up than you are, it’s time to rethink your career.) This is sooooo much gayer than anything Ne-Yo’s ever released, and sooooo much better as a result.

Michaelangelo Matos: I don’t normally use the word “charming” to describe -Dream’s own work: he’s so determined to out-Kelly R. that he seems pushy. But this track, for all its space-age affect, has the kind of airtight lightness that reminds me of an earlier R&B gigolo archetype: the Time, though in this case Morris would have had to let Jerome do a guest rap.

Dave Moore: The-Dream’s chintzy space-age MJ moves have an oddly by-numbers feel (but hey, I still like Dream-by-numbers), until one of those patented majestic up-the-scale multitracks (a Dream fingerprint since at least “Shawty Is the Shit”) leads into the best Kanye verse I’ve heard all year. Which isn’t saying much, but it’s also saying a lot, you know?

Chris Boeckmann: What’s the point of walking on the moon when Terius can take us to Vulcan?

9 Responses to “The-Dream ft. Kanye West – Walking on the Moon”

  1. My least favourite track on the Album of the Year ®, but still a solid 8. The video’s kinda ugly, though.

  2. I feel like Oliver Wendell Holmes here.

  3. This might be my favorite track on the album, just for being so pretty and spacey and light as air. It’s definitely in my top half. Kind of surprised people seem to think it’s comparatively weak. Also not sure I buy the Michael Jackson comparisons — I mean, sure, moonwalking falsettos, I get that, but how often did Michael actually do space music?

  4. Well the video at least seems to be taking some cues from “Scream” (without the budget). But yeah, I think the moonwalking falsetto are what code MJ more than anything specifically about the production — when he does it in e.g. “Falsetto” it feels a lot less like direct homage than this does.

  5. for a while i thought that “i luv your girl” was the worst song on love/hate but eventually all the album tracks sunk and in and i realized that it was a pretty great song. going through the same kinda thing with “walkin on the moon” — i think the best part of the song is how smooth the transition between verse and chorus is

  6. This is a pure summer jam. I’m sad I forgot to submit a blurb—I would’ve scored it an 8 probably.

  7. probably the weakest song on the album, production-wise and dream-wise. dream’s voice can’t really hang with tricky’s trebly staccato beat, and kanye’s verse is just a solid B (which is an A+ if we’re grading on a curve for 09 Ye verses here, let’s be real). Still, plenty to like here, the little jazz run before kanye’s verse is awesome.

  8. fwiw i don’t consider “let me see the booty” to be part of the album

  9. I love how Chuck thinks the “you” in this song is NASA.