The MTV Video Music Awards this past weekend was a veritable night of highs and lows. There was the creative use of 8th avenue just behind Madison Square Garden for performances during the pre-show, (high) the awkward and yawn-inspiring interviewing styles of the red carpet correspondents, (low) the fifteen minute Beyonce concert that happened half way through the night (high) and the unfortunate performance line-up that placed Britney Spears after it. (low)
Perhaps one of the biggest highs of the night though, besides Beyonce of course, was the premiere of Kanye West’s new video, “Fade.” Although we could have done without the expected 4 turned 7 minute rant about..well, not sure what it was about..BUT, the video instantly put its star, Teyana Taylor on everyone’s radar. The clip involves a greased up Taylor dancing alone in a workout room setting in a strategically cut sports bra and underwear. It has been compared to the iconic final dance sequence in “Flash Dance” and is also reminiscent of Janet Jackson’s, “Pleasure Principle.” Fade takes the same formula of a strong female lead alone with her moves and her thoughts and dancing through them and brings it into 2016. The dance- hall- meets- hip-hop -choreography, and a quick nod to gay voguing culture at one point makes it feel very relevant and very now. Kanye is one of the most polarizing figures in pop culture today, but few people will argue about his creativity and ability to make you look.
All in all the VMA’s were pretty entertaining. Viewers got to see a portion of Beyonce’s Formation World Tour for free, sing along to some of Rihanna’s biggest hits throughout her four performances, and get motivated to join a gym after seeing Teyana Taylor’s body.
Apparently, they gave out some awards too.
The video for “Fade” can be seen exclusively on Tidal.