Sippy Cup Review

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Sippy Cup is a song from Melanie’s debut album Cry Baby released 14 August 2015. She was a contestant in The Voice (USA) in 2012 and made it to the Top 6 before she was eliminated. After that, she signed on with Atlantic Records and released this concept album. All thirteen songs in the album are somehow tied to each other by theme or by character and they focus on heavy themes like drugs, identity and family (or the lack of).

This song in particular is flooded with meaning and emotion. She sings about skeletons in the closet, vulnerability and the desperation to appear normal. Being a concept album, most of the songs surround the life of Cry Baby and her twisted family. A father who’s working in a drug company and sleeping with another woman. A mother who’s dieting, drinking and desperate to forget reality. Cry Baby who’s caught in this mess and dressed up to make the family appear normal. (There is also a brother who’s not present in Sippy Cup but he’s doing drugs too.)

But behind all the backstory, with just the lyrics, Melanie paints an abstract picture loaded with references both to drugs and childhood memories. A sippy cup. A cradle. Harmless happy things.

But are they really?

What if the things placed inside can hurt you? What if the cradle is a prison? What if the sippy cup is a drug? What’s inside?

You can put trash inside a gilded gold box and call it treasure. Colour tissue paper red and call it roses. Paste smiles on skeletons and call them humans. It’s not wrong is it though? We make treasure out of trash and roses out of tissue. But that doesn’t mean we should forget that the treasure is still trash and the roses are tissue paper.

Blood still stains when the sheets are washed

Sex don’t sleep when the lights are off
Kids are still depressed when you dress them up
And syrup is still syrup in a sippy cup
He’s still dead when you’re done with the bottle
Of course it’s a corpse that you keep in the cradle
Kids are still depressed when you dress them up
Syrup is still syrup in a sippy cup

I think that we do that all the time. Pretend that nothing is wrong. “Going on with life,” we call it. “I’ll get over it.” We don’t. We just lock up the skeleton and place it in the back of the storeroom with the rest of them. Hiding doesn’t solve problems. Oh, but we do it anyway.

Twenty-Three Review

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“Try to guess.”

Sung by South-Korean singer-songwriter IU (Lee Ji Eun), Twenty-Three is the first single in her latest mini-album ‘Chat-shire’. And by far counted as her most personal piece of art.

In this song, IU sings about her life which people try to unravel for her, deciding that they know her intentions just by looking at her face, deciding that they understand what she wants based on something she says or does. It is a smart way of doing it, telling it through an Alice In Wonderland concept using abstract lyrics. With this kind of video and lyrics, one would be inclined to either hate or admire it. But just as the song says, which one?

Do you really know?

What is the meaning behind someone’s smile? What is the meaning behind a hint? What is the purpose of that action? Is it so simple to think that I am doing that just because I want to? I have motivations even I don’t know, how can you know what I want?

I think that IU is mature for her age and this honesty that she has, coupled with her ability to abstractly paint her thoughts out loud will allow her to separate the sheep from the wolves pretending to be sheep. But then again, I don’t know, do I? No-one will really know.

Which one?
You cannot tell with my face
Making an opposite facial expression
to the heart is really simple
Which one?
Actually I don’t know either
At first, I never wrote
even a single line of lies

Pretend to be a fox that pretends to be a bear
that pretends to be a fox
Or completely different one

It is true that you cannot judge someone at face-value because you never know their intentions. What they say about themselves, what they say about the world, what they say is the truth… do they mean what they say or are they saying something else?

All these puppet strings that people haphazardly string around themselves by judging before they know, by knowing before they judge, they tangle you up one day. The way to cut them all is to not care. If you want to care, you’ll be hurt, but that doesn’t mean it’s wrong does it?

“Try to guess.”