Nicki Minaj songs seem to come in two different forms. She makes feel good, dance-hop songs like Supa Bass and Starships, as well as more intense and aggressive rap tracks like Roman’s Revenge and Bees in the Trap. Her latest single falls into the former category, complete with electronic club beats, sugary pop vocals, and a hook that promises to get the club hotter and hotter and sexy and hotter.
Pound the Alarm uses Starships as a template, and does little to deviate from the formula. In fact, when played side by side, the two are almost completely undistinguishable. The hooks are almost a complete rewrites of each other, the techno breakdowns both irritatingly grating, and both offer next to nothing in terms of originality. A splash of LMAFO here, a dash of Black Eyed Peas there, add little Rihanna, mix in some autotune and some psycho rapping, and bam! You have Pound the Alarm.
At least the music video is kind of cool. Shot in her home country of Trinidad, it pays homage to her hometown roots. Full of colorful, heavily feathered costumes that cover next to no flesh, it has a very carnival-esque flavor that makes Trinidad seem like fun and exotic land. Its nice to see the cultural side of Minaj, but I can’t help but feel like this would have been the best possible time to ditch the blonde wig and crazy personality for a change.
I love Nicki Minaj. I really do. However, I will call a bad song when I see it. Starships was just “ok,” so what can I say about a song that almost comes off as a case of self plagiarism? Sure, it’ll be Nicki’s next chart topper, but seriously? This is the best you could do? Step aside, Nicki. Let Roman have a go at it.
Final Score: 1/5