I think I have finally figured out why some of the top pop hits of today grate so fearfully on my nerves. I'm a kind Dad and sometimes let my daughters listen to Hits One on the Sirius radio. Some of the tunes played are quite good. Some make me want to leap screaming from my moving Prius.
It's not just the overtly sexual lyrics which would have given me pause even when I was a horny 18-year-old. It's not just the unimaginative melodies and over-processed, faked-up singing. It's not even the deliberate "stoopid-ness" of the personae adopted by the performers.
No, what really makes me cringe is the fact that, of late, producers have been sampling heavily from the most over-played pop of the 1980s to build the music-montages over which their singers rap, croon or mumble. They've appropriated songs that were big hits at a time when pop music was at its most fake, unimaginative and tedious. And the songs they are (re)using were horribly over-played in the 1980s.
There was some good music produced in the 1980s. But it wasn't what made it as "pop hits." I still listen to some music from the 1980s. But I was sick of these hit songs 20 years ago. Adding new lyrics and beats hasn't helped.