Additionally, I do know it’d sound odd to say that I discovered consolation in TikTok, the centerless, directionless app that grabs you by the neck and clings tight for so long as you’ll let it, however I discovered its relentless, crossed-up rhythms soothing. There are countless rabbit holes to fall down, myriad subcultures to peek in on, numerous around-the-way superstars who’ve lastly discovered their dream milieu.
Gilbert asks: Yeah, I heard you say one thing comparable on a current episode of Popcast the place you talked about the way you “struggled this yr to take heed to albums” and puzzled in regards to the “utility of the album.” Do you suppose that’s a operate of quarantine, or is it simply an extension of the playlist-ification of music? Truthfully, virtually each new music I found this yr I found by some Spotify playlist. (No free advertisements.)
Jon solutions: As terrible because it sounds, an album is just a knowledge dump now. That doesn’t imply that some artists received’t proceed to goal to be auteurs of the shape — say, Taylor Swift or Adele — however the minute albums hit streaming providers, they’re sliced and diced and the songs are relegated to playlist slots, and all the things after that may be a crap shoot. The reality is that albums labored as a medium solely as a result of everybody was a captive. Once you look again at your favourite older albums now, I’m certain you see the weak spots that you simply’d fortunately have programmed out in the event you had the know-how then. Now you do. I wouldn’t be stunned if the following era of pop stars finds methods to by no means launch an “album” once more — they’ll simply drip music out, one automated-brain-chip-download at a time.
Gilbert asks: OK, I’ve to return again to one thing, although. It’s embarrassing.
Right here it’s — I’m simply not on TikTok a lot. (Insert grimace emoji.) I do know I must be as a result of it’s a serious a part of the tradition, however there are solely so some ways I can direct my time. This Robert Caro ebook isn’t going to complete itself, Jon! What are a number of the greatest stuff you’ve seen there this yr?
Jon solutions: It’s cool, man — you receives a commission to run the division, and I receives a commission to do … this.
#FrogTikTok. Teenagers speaking about studying political concept, each as means to revolution and to flirtation. @funkbeezly’s taxonomy of boyfriends. The debunking of Noah Beck’s Yale soccer scholarship. The Home No person Requested For. Jordan Scott. (Sorry.) (Somebody assist him along with his merch, although.) The enjoyment within the feedback when Charli D’Amelio lastly danced to ppcocaine’s “three Musketeers.” Excessive trend satirist guys who’ll quickly be in want of chiropractors. Jeremy O. Harris’s “WAP” dance at Pompeii. @cyberexboyfriend. The very lengthy, very particular reminiscence of @nfbroleelove. “Who’s the drunkest?” Dances to Phoebe Bridgers and Soccer Mommy. @karchill and his Mentos. The numerous flavors of Pop Smoke and Lil Tjay’s “Temper Swings.” Children in Zoom lecture rooms telling their lecturers how a lot they admire them. Jasmine Orlando. “The place? Bunny? Surplus? Labor? Worth?” And naturally, Larry Scott, who all the time had a “good” prepared after I wanted one.
Gilbert asks: What’s the longest you’ve ever spent scrolling by TikTok?
Jon solutions: Ummmmmmm … three hours? So, not almost lengthy sufficient.