What does Rebecca Black say? She says what day of the week it is, and which day follows that day of the week. And nearly three years after the then-amateur singer, now 16, captivated an Internet full of rubberneckers with the tenaciously matter-of-fact “Friday,” she’s doing it again. This time, with self-awareness.
Black’s absence has been an eternity by viral-pop standards, and her aptly titled “Saturday” faces the unenviable challenge of coming after Ylvis’ ineffable smash “The Fox” — a SPIN 2013 year-end list honoree that itself displaced the “Harlem Shake” to become the “Gangnam Style” of a new generation. This sequel contagion, again via Ark Music Factory, also follows the “Friday”-conveyor’s indigestion-causing “Chinese Food.”
In that context, “Saturday” looks good enough, racking up nearly nine million views as of this blog post and flattering its viewers with meta nods to Black/Ark’s original viral-clip-du jour. It’s decent bubblegum pop, celebrating Saturday too straightforwardly to raise hackles (“I don’t want this Saturday to end”), even though the video’s depiction of hip-yet-innocent youthful fun is only a surfboard or so removed from The Simpson‘s Poochie, and it’s hard for this music-critic type to get over co-YouTube-star Dave Days’ floppy-haired resemblance to Pavement’s Stephen Malkmus. The occasional spoken-word interjections are unashamedly delivered in an “oh my god Becky look at her butt” early-’90s Valley girl cadence.
At the same time, it’s no “The Fox” (what is?!), and the world already has its fair share of better Saturday-themed songs. Even within this one’s high-fructose milieu, try throwing some clicks toward Whigfield’s 1994 going-out Europop bash “Saturday Night” — and then try to stop singing, “Da, ba, da, dan, dee, dee, dee, da / Nee, na, na, na.” Or, if you’re up for some ESG-moody U.K. post-punk, try the Jellies’ dub-hollowed early-’80s dancefloor nugget “Jive Baby on a Saturday Night.” At least there’s already an unbeatable song about “Sunday Morning” — which reminds us, with apologies to Morrissey, Black’s “Saturday” is, like, everyday. Come, Armageddon, come!
Just because, listen to De La Soul’s classic “A Roller Skating Jam Named Saturdays” below.