Music video: Britney Spears - Hold it against me


With that intro, I thought I was watching "Oops...I did it again" 2011!

Everything was spot on with this video, except for...yup, you guessed it: Britney's dancing. Brian Friedman should be shot for talking up the choreography the way he was. Then again, he was never going to put it on blast that Britney's Onyx hotel tour swagger was dead and gone. The dancing here was no better than it was in the "3" video. In fact, I think the dancing in "3" was better, because we got shots of Britney dancing which lasted more than 2 seconds. Every one of the dance sequences in this video got handled by a China man with a meat cleaver: chopped to f**k.

The strength of the visuals is what compensates for the lack of Britney being on her A-game with the dancing. In fact, the visuals of this video are what absolutely make it. The sets, the lighting, Britney goin' Tekken 6 on her own arse, the wardrobe, the new edit of the song, even the weaves were all on-point. The only mis-step was with Britney's (lack of) dancing. I can't even defend it by saying that "Hold it against me" is not a typically structured song to go all out to with a routine; because there are hundreds of fan choreographed videos on YouTube of hot, fast paced routines to the song. But as much as I wanted to see a bitch make like Bayonetta, pussy pop, weave thrash and work her waist with some wild animal on her head - the dancing didn't break the deal here, as it did in the cases of "Circus" and "3". Better dancing from Britney would have made this video better and restored some faith that she still has it. But even with her whack dance steps, the video wasn't a complete failure because of the strength of the visuals.

Britney did not hold up her end of the bargain with the dancing. But Jonas Akerland sure as hell worked his money's worth with the visuals, and put forth what is quite possibly one of Britney's better videos. The setup of Britney int he white dress reminded me quite a bit of Ayumi Hamasaki's "Real me" video, with a bit of Hikaru Utada's "Passion" thrown in.

27 comments:

  1. Smh. I knew this is what you were gonna say. When I was watching the video I was thinking to myself "J's gonna say everything was on point except the dancing." Even crystal can come harder with the choreography and she has the moves of a "cinder block" lmfao..

    ReplyDelete
  2. Oh God, the editing annoyed me, the sheer volume of quick shots and rapid cuts gave me a headache! Plus her make up looked a bit iffy in places. But yes, the concept & visuals were great, and I totally got the video game vibe from the fight too but I was thinking more 'Dead or Alive'.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I totally loved the bitch-fight scene. It reminded me of Anna against Nina from Tekken. Aboslutely gorgeous. Loved the heels, in the fighting scene & sounds. I almost thought Hwoarang, Jin and Kazuya would show up at some point. But yes...the dancing was wack...anyway lookin' forward to an amazing top notch produced album.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Britney spears is a product that is no longer working.

    ReplyDelete
  5. @ Melvin R:
    It's true though! The visuals and the audio in this video are pretty damn hot! The only serially lacking aspect of this video is where the dancing is concerned.

    I've been watching a shit load of her old videos and performances recently; and it's like watching 2 completely different people. It's rather sad how badly she's managed to lose that IT factor over the past 6 years...

    @lilithdarkstorm:
    They had to do something to try and mask Britney's lack of dancing ability *lol*

    @Ralph:
    Britney is pretty much dead.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I really hate this Jonas Akerlund guys videos... Sure he is in demand but all his videos are just really nice visual and that's it. Nothing in Brit video made sense from the teaser I though it be flashbacks and fighting her old self or something instead it was just nice random visuals, product placement and crappy dancing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. alright, the dancing left much to be desired. so glad brit realized that she had to come harder everywhere else tho. i'd watch it many times over to see that good ass fight scene and see her look absolutely great! you know she'll be back on the top of the charts from this and baby girl is still prob in bed right now! :)
    Naan other chick can do that!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  8. This is going to hurt her soon though. Because fans are going to start asking themselves: Why are we supporting an "artist" who does not promote, give her all in live performances, engage with us or even send tweets by herself - whilst ladies like Lady Gaga and Beyonce go the full 9?

    Lady Gaga is giving her fans what Britney's wish she'd give them; although none of them would ever dare admit it. Say what you will about her, but at least she does what she does with hunger and conviction. 2 things which seem lost on Britney in relation to her career. It's becoming too evident now that Britney isn't having fun anymore, and that she's only doing this because she HAS to. Not because she WANTS to.

    'Femme fatale' will end up being a good album. Of this I have no doubt. But I think many of Britney's rational, long term fans are fed up now and want more than just a good record from her. They want everything else which encapsulates that - such as better live performances, interviews, promotion, something that let's the world know she still gives a shit about her career and WANTS to continue with it. And the truth of the matter is, that they're / we're not going to get it. At least not anytime soon.

    Britney needs to pull a Hikaru Utada.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Britney needs to pull a Hikaru Utada.

    Put out good music?

    Forgive me, cheap shot I know. :P

    ReplyDelete
  10. I haven't seen her (or wanted to see her) in a long time and she really is only a shadow of her former self. She dosen't look good or move well at all. I agree she's not having fun and it shows. All that crap going on in the video was very distracting actually. It's obvious the director was hoping ppl wouldn't notice that she barely moved.

    ReplyDelete
  11. @Junlee LMFAO that's not going to happen. She never put out good music. ugh I hate when people use Utada Hikaru in the same sentence as Britney lmfao Utada is a real musical artist, while britney is a manufactured pop star. Her music doesn't showcase herself as an artist, it shows how good the production team behind her is.
    @ Beruda Also, the background dancers were seriously moving, which distracted the viewers from how shitty her movements were.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Loved the fight shots. Everything else was poor, though my expectations weren't high as I always disliked the song. Britney looked bored and dazed and I really wasn't liking all the product placement. Guess she knows she won't be raking in the cash from music anymore. Old MV's playing in the screens behind her in the white dress set up just rubbed salt, vinegar, lemon juice AND cajun pepper into the 'she used to be great' wound. These repeat comebacks are just sad now. I'm gonna go watch some classic Britney videos to wash that bitter 4.29 from my mouth..

    ReplyDelete
  13. i dunno...there are plenty of irrational fans who'll buy anything from her regardless of whether or not she promotes it...

    i check for britney not because of her promo and performances, but because of the music. essentially, that's what's it all about - the music. an artist like utada hikaru satisfies my passion for good, credible, music that inspires me; others mellow me out like adele's ballads and beethoven. britney, on the other hand, pulls out my fun, party, sexy side and that's why i love her! in the club, i don't listen to how good her vocals are or if she's showcasing herself as an artist, i care about whether or not i can dance my ever-loving ass off to the beat and the production! and i can EVERY time!

    i don't think it was ever britney's intention to make timeless music and have longevity as a credible recording artist with great vocals and thought-provoking lyrics. if it was, she would have switched up her music & image a long time ago. she's here for fun, sexy songs that will get you moving...and for that she'll ALWAYS have a fan base!

    ReplyDelete
  14. The first time i saw this i was in bed and almost asleep, the quick shot changes almost gave me an epileptic fit lol
    The more i watch it though the more i like it, the fight scene is epic and made me think of Kitana & Melina from Mortal Combat lmao
    Really everything about this video gets a "A" except Britney's dancing which gets a "C" but whatever, i'm starting to think that whatever medication she is on must make her too lethargic to get down like she used too because there's really no other reason why she couldn't.
    I have a feeling this is way better than the imminent 20 minute lesson in self indulgence Lady Gaga will release for "Manufactured this way" in a week lol

    ReplyDelete
  15. @ Bryan I understand where you're coming from. We all have music that we would rather listen to when we go out to the club. Believe me, I find myself grinding to the beat to music that I would normally regard as trash lmfao. We all have our guilty pleasures lol. Now that I'm getting used to the college life I've grown a tolerance for mindless music lol.But with all of that said, you wouldn't find me paying for that type of music, or looking further into those kind of artists. Also, you can't help but think that brittney is ripping a majority of her fans off. I'm no fan of hers, but If I really enjoy a performer's music I would like to see's that they'ree doing what their name suggest and performing. Half ass dusty dance steps and lipsyncing while walking across the stage and flicking a ratty weave around is not performing. It's not about even about creating music for longetivity, it's about giving the fans what they deserve and paid for.

    ReplyDelete
  16. *throws Melvin R a dollar for making so much damn sense*

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm a Britney stan and i myself couldn't give a f**ck if she's promoting or not as long as she's happy in her personal life.
    Britney doesn't NEED to promote because she has sucha strong and loyal fanbase, you might think (and i agree) that the Circus tour wasn't amazing but everybody i know that went had an amazing time and was happy to just be in Britney's presence.
    There are some artists that just enjoy making the music and don't like all the shit that goes with it. Look at Kate Bush she took 12 years between her last two albums and when she finally dropped "Aerial" she did like 2 radio and 1 magazine interview and that was it and i think Britney may have gotten to that stage.

    I do think something shady is going on though, she hasn't said one word since this era started it's like her team are keeping her prisoner or something, i know the album will SLAY but i'm glad this is the last album she is contractually obliged to make, once this is done she can choose what she wants to do whether it's signing a new deal or going on a hiatus, either way her fans are always here for her :P

    ReplyDelete
  18. Putting out hot music on its own is not enough. And as good as her last 2 albums were, it was the production which was brilliant more than anything else. I mean shit... I was listening to the instrumental of "Hold it against me" this morning, and d'ya know what? The song is BETTER without her on it! It's not even a case of Britney not having the best vocals, but more a case of her sounding so deadpan and half arsed on songs. That energy and that sass she had in her voice on 'Oops...I did it again' - it's gone now. Her voice is lifeless. The last song she did where she was singing like she had fun and life in her was the demo version "Cold as fire". Her voice sounded as screechy as hell, but at least you could hear she had fun and her voice had character. Plus, I'm beginning to get tired of so many of her songs being overloaded with the vocals of the women who have written the songs for her. Because as long term readers of this blog know, I love ladies who can lace their songs with all of their own vocals - which is why I love Hikaru, Brandy and Beyoncé. You can still hear Bonnie McKee ALL over "Hold it against me". Her vocals are more prominent than Britney's. And it's the same with "Radar". You don't realize how much of that whole entire song is actually Candice Nelson and not Britney until you hear the demo. It's shocking.

    I agree with what Melvin said. If Britney is not going to start promoting her music, connecting properly with her fans, and giving some sign that she WANTS to do this music thing for both herself and the fans; then she needs to just go on a hiatus. Personally, I'd rather an artist that I loved stopped doing music and were content with their life as a result, which in turn would be better for their career if they were to return to it; as opposed to them continuing to do the music thing,be unhappy and do a disservice to fans in the process.

    As for the Kate Bush comparisons, I don't think it's a fair argument. At no point in her career has Kate Bush been an artist who has been heavy on promotion and whoring herself out in the media. Britney was. Her whole career has thrived and been propelled by the mass media's interest in her. Even when she was breaking down, she was all about mixing it up with the paparazzi and getting that media attention. And now she wants to shy from it completely and not so much as tweet by herself? It's both ridiculous and strange.

    People hated on Britney before because she didn't sing live and could never really "sing". But the knives are out for her even more now. Because it's becoming evident that she's just not putting in enough effort into what she does. And in comparison to the likes of Lady Gaga, Beyoncé...shoot...even Rihanna (f**k...) even KE$HA!! It makes her look lazy.

    ReplyDelete
  19. And as for 'Femme fetale' slaying. The production probably will, but sales wise? Make no mistake that Lady Gaga and Beyoncé will both outsell Britney. Because they will do all of the things that will not only help a record sell big in its first week, but continue to sell well over a period of time WORLDWIDE. They will tour. They will do interviews. They will hop on that Enterprise teleporter and hit up 12 countries in the space of 7 hours. They will rack up the endorsements. Lady Gaga will continue to holla on her Twitter. And Beyoncé will get her nephew to run hers for her. And of course, they will both put out re-releases of their albums.

    Britney on the other hand will have her manager send out a "Brit hopes u enjoy the new album #FemmeFetale" tweet and Candies will release 2 pictures of Britney looking swaggerless.

    ReplyDelete
  20. No1 - I didn't mean that Kate Bush was ever a heavy promoter i meant that now she does practically nothing (not that i care i'm just happy to get an album) even compared to how she used to promote and i just meant that maybe Britney just enjoys making the music in the studio and now she isn't interested in promo and all that.

    No2 - When i said the album would slay i meant as in the quality of music, a Britney album never dissapoints musically if we're talking commercially i think it'ss do 4-5m with no promo just like circus (yes i know she did promo but barely) and i do think she'll tour again, whoever is running her twitter said that she's love to go to South America on her next tour.

    No3 - If Britney is unhappy making music then of course i'd prefer it if she just stepped away which is why i'm glad her contract is up after this album and she'll have a choice but again, are you a real Britney fan or stan because most that i know don't particularly care if she's doing promo, i mean sure it would be nice but it really doesn't matter to us we just want her music.

    ReplyDelete
  21. @ J I agree with you. I almost always do.

    @FuturestarDELUX. I can tell that you're definitely a Stan of Britney's. Its like me with hikaru. I feel the need to defend her when people talk shit about her music/voice. Even when some of the things that they're saying make a lot of sense.

    ReplyDelete
  22. @ FUTURESTARdelux:
    "maybe Britney just enjoys making the music in the studio"

    Her half arsed, phoned in, deadpan delivery on "Hold it against me" and near enough the whole of Circus says otherwise.

    ReplyDelete
  23. @ J: really tho? i thought HIAM had her sounding much better compared to Radar, 3, a few of her other singles. and this new snippet of inside out sounds pretty passionate (or i might be fooled by the autotune...) i think femme may have a few numbers that have that bite of enthusiasm you're looking for.

    she may be tired of the music game and whatever else we may speculate, but let's at least give her credit for trying here (beyond lack of promo and hardcore dancing and the like). she must doing something right (and in some opinions wrong) for all of us to keep her name in our mouths and on our fingertips as we talk and type about her.

    let's face it - britney carved out a pretty good spot for herself. J said: "At no point in her career has Kate Bush been an artist who has been heavy on promotion and whoring herself out in the media. Britney was." Keyword here: WAS. She did all that craziness a while ago so that she could sit back and chill now without the hassle of trying to stay in people's mind with the barrage of gaga and bey and katy and rih. Sure, other artists tour and re-release and they may sell more. But britney's content with not doing that because she no longer really has to. most of the hardcore stans that stick by are the ones she had during the "Baby One More" and "Oops!" era who grew up with her before Beyonce and others came on the scene.

    if this is her last album and she takes a hiatus, so be it. if it's not, so be that. whatever she does, the fact that she's an icon isn't changing. bald, crazy, sexy, barefoot, or autotuned, britney will still be the shit. check for me in 40 years and i'll be guy in the nursing home runway-walking down the hall singing "gimme gimme MORE gimme MORE gimme gimme MORRREEEE!"

    ReplyDelete
  24. @ Bryan
    No way. Britney gave me more on "Radar" and "3" and sold the cold femme-bot sex better on both songs in my opinion. The only part of "Hold it against me" where she gives a lil' something is on "kinda hazaaaayy". Other than that, her delivery is just flat and characterless. And I'm not hearing any form of passion on "Inside out". It doesn't even sound like her in the clip.

    Britney may be tired of doing the heavy promotion, but to shun it completely?! As a fan, are you seriously okay with her not so much as tweeting by herself and making NO appearances on TV and radio - yet still expecting you to pay for her records and see her flounce around like a zombie on stage? The fact that her fans don't expect / want more from her is a bit worrying. Because it pretty much gives both Britney and Jive a pass to just do no promo, serve up the bare minimum and still rake in money. It's damn near extortion! *lol* Good for Britney, but not so good for the fans who are starting to waver on her. I'm not expecting Britney to do grueling promotion how she did when she was 19. But are a couple of performances, a swing by Ryan Seacrest, some behind the scenes YouTube videos, an appearance on 'Lopez tonight' and some regular tweets too much to ask?

    Britney worked HARD early on in her career, but like I said - if she's not going to show...and I mean SHOW more passion for what she does, then she needs to just stop. I like the music she's put out since Blackout. But I'd enjoy it so much more if she showed she was actually having fun and loving what she's doing.

    Nobody is disputing Britney's icon status. Of course she is. But an icon is somebody who is STILL able to show us here and now what made them an icon in the first place, and Britney just seems like a shadow of her former self now. I watched her in that "Overprotected (Darkchild remix)" video a minute ago and just thought "That is somebody else. That chick slow grinding her pussy on the floor on her knees in the rain is NOT the same Britney I saw in that "Hold it against me" video. Not even remotely".

    The bitch can't dance how she used to. That ridiculous swagger she had in photoshoots: gone. That passion she had for entertaining: it must have fell out of her pocket when she almost dropped her baby.

    ReplyDelete
  25. As far as promotion is concerned she has to be excited about the record before she can get her fans hyped up, and she's clearly not excited about it. If you put yourself out there, live on stage, you better give 150% (which doesn't include lip synching by the way). That is her job as a performer and artist. End of discussion. To say that her fans are just happy to see her step on stage and accept a lack luster performance is very sad. I look at this video and her skin doesn't even look good, somethings wrong. She needs to step away and decide if she wants to continue on this road.

    ReplyDelete
  26. i'm definitely not condoning her enthusiasm or lack thereof for her music, promotion, or concerts. my money sure didn't pay to go see the circus tour and she came to my city twice! but it did pay for the circus album and will still pay to get femme fatale. i'm perfectly content to appreciate and celebrate her music, album-wise.

    swag and passion may be gone, but she's definitely ain't the only one giving 10% on stage (ke$ha isdatchu???) and it remains to be seen what she'll do after this contract is up, but for the time being, i'm blasting HIAM, looking forward to "inside out", and waiting to read J's next britney-tagged review/post (hopefully without a bad weave pic accompanying the wall of text! :DDD )

    ReplyDelete

HTML tags for bold, italic and hyperlinks are allowed