Lady Gaga is known for her outlandish concert tours, eccentric public behavior, and extravagant sense of style. However, for all this, she has yet to truly push the envelope musically. Yes, songs like “Born This Way” and “Judas” take on controversial subject matter (yes, somehow homosexuality is still controversial in the 21st century), but the musical styling are still basic ballads and dance tracks. They are sounds familiar to Top 40 and modern pop radio formats.
This does not mean her fans should feel duped as they bop in their car in “Just Dance” and “Poker Face”. Lady Gaga has been perfecting her craft as a performing artist since the very beginning. She just took the visual game to a whole new level at a very early stage and she has never been afraid to voice her personal beliefs, so she has completed two of three steps to icon status, with Lady Gaga tickets already a must have and her antics getting bumped up to the front page immediately. If any of this is in doubt, take a look at the recent tours by Nicki Minaj and Katy Perry.
They, their antics, their chesty costumes, and elaborate stage shows are meant to follow the Haus of Gaga, not Madonna, as so many people assume. If these were disciples of Madonna they would be celebrating sexuality and pushing the bounds with pure pyrotechnics and choreography. The new pop diva tour requires excellent dance troupes and both use fireworks, but the true appeal of these shows is the Broadway-level attention to detail in the sets. Whether these songstresses are sitting atop the largest ice cream sundae in the world or there is an exorcism taking place in a gothic dungeon, the sets are as much the star as the singer. That is all Gaga.
Thus, Lady G is already an influential figure in the world of pop and dance. Now, all she needs is to push the limit musically and change the type of music being played on the radio stations and getting the most hits on YouTube. ARTPOP may be just the album to do so. There is a rumor floating around suggesting Lady Gaga is considering breaking it into two. One would have the familiar pop tunes and the other would be full of experimental tracks.
If this is indeed the case, then 2013 could be the year in which Lady Gaga firmly entrenches herself as a musical icon. Achieving all this at the age of 27 might just put her past icon and into legendary status.