St. Vincent - "Los Ageless" (Singles Going Steady)

St. Vincent paints a picture of obsession -- with youth, with beauty, with the superficialities that have come to be synonymous with Los Angeles.

Adriane Pontecorvo: Desperation drives the synth-heavy sound of "Los Ageless" as St. Vincent paints a picture of obsession -- with youth, with beauty, with the superficialities that have come to be synonymous with Los Angeles. Sharp, blurry guitar lines build up a wailing sonic wall behind her powerful voice, giving the whole mix a dark edge in sharp contrast to the unnervingly bold colors of the single's video. Annie Clark plays a woman who would do anything to stay perfect and plastic in the city that accepts nothing less, and she does it with a catchy chorus. [8/10]

Tristan Kneschke: Skewering the vapid populous of Los Angeles is an easy but reliable trope. But despite Hollywood perpetuating its Perez Hilton culture, La La Land is home to many people that are, well, just normal (lest we forget the jungle of narcissists living in America's other brimming metropolis on the East Coast). Still, it doesn't stop St. Vincent from exploring the ageless, beauty-obsessed culture in her new video, complete with a nod to Terry Gilliam's face-stretching scene in Brazil. However, we know where her allegiances lie since her new synthpop ballad contrasts with her comparatively affectionate song “New York", a softer, lamenting love song to the city where she clearly finds more comfort. No doubt Annie Clark has met some outstandingly vapid characters in LA to inspire “Los Ageless", but the song feels like a dig for a city that provides as many deep surprises as it does shallow disappointments. [6/10]

Evan Sawdey: There has been some criticism regarding the new sounds that Annie Clark's St. Vincent has been making since she began putting out singles co-produced with the indie-pop producer du jour Jack Antonoff (Taylor Swift, Lorde, .fun). Of the three Clark released ahead of her new record (the other two being "New York" and the twisty little "Pills") this is the weakest of the three, but still a solid if affable piece of electro guitar perks. There are many more intriguing little secrets to see on the new record (assuredly), but hey, it could've been a sell-out move, and it very much was not. Kudos. [5/10]

Steve Horowitz: Imagine a world with no beauty. That what exists would be perceived as beautiful as a result. Or such is the implication of the ageless beauty of St. Vincent who understands the double-edged dilemma this creates. Is it the girls in the cages or those on the side of the bars who are trapped? The catchy melody keeps the song moving and somehow manages to keep things static at the same time like a hamster on a wheel. This is the song that never ends. [8/10]

Ian Rushbury: That's a great title, right there. It's a well-worn theme, but St. Vincent breathes a bit of new life into it, armed with a hatful of state-of-the-art-in-1984 sounds. Lots of squelchy bass and a percussion track that sounds like someone tapping a pencil on a radiator. Great melody and a bravura performance, too. There's been some real thought behind the promo video as well -- the colors are so bright it's like someone is tattooing your brain. [8/10]

William Nesbitt: The lyrics equate Los Angeles with either a state of timelessness or a desperate, futile attempt to escape time with phrases such as “the winter never comes" and “the waves they never break". The video seems very Lady Gaga with a woman sitting in with her gauze over her nose recovering after a nose job. I could see this as a Eurythmics tune. However, it stands on its own and is more than just a facelift of past and present pop sounds. [6/10]

SCORE: 6.83

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