I have been asleep at the wheel when it comes to Robin Thicke lately. Mostly out of disappointment. I used to like the guy, but now I have learned to enact the power of separating the artist from the art as it's truly the only way for me to get joy out of The Evolution Of Robin Thicke and Something Else now because Thicke went batshit after "Blurred Lines" and things keep getting weirder and weirder*. If you've been living under a rock, Thicke and his wife, actress Paula Patton, divorced, separated, got burned out, whatever, they are supposedly done-zo after being high school sweethearts from way back when. Thicke has been adamant on trying to get the love of his life back ever since, and he's doing it the only way he knows how, by music, and he's got a whole album of tears and apologies coming soon.
Paula, with its ratchet MS Paint version of Jimi Hendrix's Band Of Gypsies album art, is his musical attempt to get back in holy matrimony with his wife. Some may think this is artistic expression. Some may see it as a romantic gesture of the utmost kind. Some feel that you do crazy things when you're in love. Some believe if music be the food of love we need to play on. I say, hell nope. This is fifty shades and then some of weird ass thirst. The tracklisting, which Vulture (hilariously) broke down, just solidifies why this Paula album sounds like Thicke's thesis entry to get his masters degree from 'Keith Sweat's School of Slimy Yet Soulful Begging'.
I know what you're going to say: "But, but...lots of musicians release love lorn albums and songs that borderline on obsession and they turn out to be amazing, even legendary projects! Without pain there isn't art!" Okay, fair. I like "Every Breath You Take", "My Sharona", and yeah, a Keith Sweatstain song here and there. I confess. Sue me. Art is pain, pain is art.
But this is painful (or hilarious) for us. He can beg for his wife back all he wants, but instead of shallow grandstanding he really should address the real reasons why the relationship dissolved, you know, with her. Show her, don't tell us. Unloading all his emotional baggage out for public display plus gaining profit from it just reeks sour, and non-sincere to me (...and also Marvin Gaye did that already). The recently released music video for "Get Her Back" doesn't absolve it either, it just heightens why Thicke is a Creeper McCreeperson who needs to learn to take "no" for an answer (having the woman drown at the end? Hella nope). Putting a woman on the spot like that is not about love, it's more so about control, and this whole album set-up is a Law & Order: SVU episode waiting to get spun five kinds of ways.
Sure, sometimes people can make their case, change, and win hearts back unconditionally. Every couple is different in how they handle their biz. People do foolish, out-in-public things to express their love to someone and we usually sigh over that stuff in the movies and over gooey YouTube videos. Look, I wish my life was an Audrey Hepburn movie, but to me, what Thicke is pulling isn't trips around Rome on a Vespa and helping me look for my cat in a rainstorm , it's something a little more intentional than soulful croons and flowery words and it reeks.
So, I pose the question: If you had a messy break-up with someone and they decided to release an album or do some wack-a-doo grandstand in an effort to get you back, would you go back to this person? Or would you dismiss them?
As for me, I'm over here like:
*Cocaine is a helluva a drug