You don’t even have to listen to Hot Chelle Rae’s music to dislike them. There’s their launch by nepotism. There’s the fact that they’re named after an annoying MySpace superstan who apparently wasn’t annoying enough for them to either ogle or mock by name. There’s their involvement with Taylor Swift and T-Pain’s stereotype-a-riffic “Thug Story,” which sounds more and more off the more novelty rap videos flood the musical floor.
But the song. Oh, the song, which actually contains the line “even the white kids!” Forget the way the lyrics substitute “you got me singing like whoa” and “la la la, whatever” for finished songwriting and Zach Galifianakis namedrops for wit. Forget the fact that tonight is booked and doesn’t need more songs about it. Forget the caterwaul of a hook that knows no repetition too often to try and no note too high to attempt. That one line, delivered with all the racial sensitivity of a drunken Southern frat boy, takes “Tonight Tonight” from subpar pop-punk to an absolute disaster. Naturally, it went Top Ten.