April 24, 2012


Gotye Clarifies "Glee"-Bashing Comments

Joseph Okpako
Joseph Okpako

Update: At a private performance in Los Angeles, Gotye clarified his comments, saying the only "dinky" part was the xylophone hook in the song. "I thought it was really clever to transpose the song to two guys. It was a great idea." And apparently he meant "ultra-dry" as a compliment too?

Gotye has thrown his Belgian-Australian hat into the Glee-bashing ring with some harsh words on the Fox TV show's cover of his No. 1 hit "Somebody That I Used To Know" featuring Kimbra. He's so displeased, in fact, that he's slammed the cover version in two separates publications, according to Spinner.

"They did such a faithful arrangement of the instrumentals but the vocals were that pop Glee style," Gotye said. "[The vocals were] ultra dry, sounded pretty tuned and the rock has no real sense, like it's playing to you from a cardboard box." 

Ouch! He just called that s--t corrugated! Fighting words. He told another outlet that the whole thing sounded "dinky and wrong" to him. So in case you're still confused, he does NOT like Glee's cover.

Glee's take on the leftfield indie hit was sung by Darren Criss—one of the show's breakout vocalists—and guest star Matt Bomer from USA Network's White Collar, who played Criss' estranged older brother. You can watch the clip of their performance below and see for yourself if it does, in fact, sound like recycled cardboard.

Glee - "Somebody That I Used To Know (Gotye cover)"

Gotye is hardly the first artist to object to Glee's streamlined approach to covering the hits, although most musicians who diss Glee refuse to allow their songs to be covered in the first place.

Here's our running tally of musicians who have beefed with Glee:

Damon Albarn: "It’s a homogenization of everything and it will ultimately lead to emptiness." Yes, but what does he REALLY think?

Slash: "I draw the line at Glee. When Grease came out I was like, 'Oh, c’mon, give me a break.' Actually, I look at Grease now and think: Between High School Musical and Glee, Grease was a brilliant work of art."

Kings of Leon: After they casually revealed they had turned down Glee, the show's co-creator Ryan Murphy let loose with a public "f--k you" toward the Southern rockers. That prompted a Twitter response from the band's drummer, Nathan Followill: "Dear Ryan Murphy, let it go. See a therapist, get a manicure, buy a new bra."

Yuck! Latent homophobia. Not kool, KoL. Later on, Gwyneth Paltrow smoothed things over between Murphy and the Brothers Followill, but not before Dave Grohl voiced his support of their rejection.

Dave Grohl: "It's every band's right, you shouldn't have to do f--king Glee. Dude, maybe not everyone loves Glee. Me included. I watched 10 minutes and it wasn't my thing… The guy who created Glee is so offended that we're not, like, begging to be on his f--king show. F--k that guy for thinking anybody and everybody should want to do Glee."

With those volleys in mind, Gotye's "cardboard" comment really isn't all that harsh. 

What do you think about the Gotye/Glee beef? Is his critique of the show's version of his song valid? Or should he have refrained from letting them use it in the first place?