Kradam Rock Opera is destined for greatness
Finally watching the latest Degrassi: The Next Generation. Yeah, I watch Canadian teenage melodrama. Got a problem with that? Since the episode focused on fan fiction, it was obviously a sign I should post exquisite bit of Kradam analysis slash found on LiveJournal. For some people, the dream of Adam Lambert mounting Kris Allen just will not die. The author of this crap has imagined both Allen and Lambert’s debut albums to be some sort of subconscious rock opera documenting Kradam’s eternal love.
Yes, I am obsessive-compulsive, but I’m not psychotic or delusional (I don’t think).
Do you ever wonder if Kris or Adam ever secretly publish their own Kradam fic? Or do you ever wish that Kris and Adam would just tell us that Kradam is real? Well, guess what? They’ve done both! At least, I think they’ve done both.
I believe that Adam’s and Kris’s albums are actually parts of a rock opera. Yes, a rock opera. Now, before you roll your eyes at the overenthusiastic, crazy tinhatter, I hope you’ll give me a chance to explain.
When put in a certain order, the songs on their albums, plus a few others that they regularly sing, form a narrative about the development of their relationship. Each song is like a piece of a musical jigsaw puzzle, and there are often clues in the music and/or the lyrics about how the pieces fit together. And, no, I don’t suffer from hallucinations or delusions (I don’t think anyway!). It just takes some literary analysis, some logic, and some understanding of music theory to figure it out.
I know this all sounds rather implausible, so I’ve written a listening guide that explains step-by-step how I figured this out and how everything fits together. But even if you do believe me, it’s still sooo worth reading through this. Their story is absolutely epic and beautiful and heartbreaking. And yes, I really do believe this is their story. I’m just the interpreter.
Dude. You know what’s heartbreaking? That you wrote this dreckitude.
How could this be real?
If you’re still with me, you may be wondering how this could be possible, especially given that so many of these songs were written by other people. My guess is that a rock opera was not in their original plans when they started working on their albums; it was probably after they already had songs like “Fever,” “Soaked,” and “Live Like We’re Dying,” that they realized, “Hey! We could turn this into a story!” And then they started selecting and writing other songs to fill in the gaps and tie everything together. The final product is similar to a jukebox musical, such as Mamma Mia!, where songs by ABBA were put together to create a narrative.
But, you may say, some of the songs on your list are covers that they sung for AI, long before they would have started thinking about a rock opera. I realize this is the case, but songs often have multiple meanings. The reasons why they find a song meaningful now may not always be the same reasons why they chose it then.
But, you may then ask, How do you know that these songs go in this particular order if a song can have multiple meanings? Honestly, sometimes it was pretty hard to figure out where a song was supposed to go; I had to listen to the music very carefully in order to determine what came before and after it. It also helps that Adam recently did a track-by-track discussion of the songs on his album. Even so, I’m not absolutely certain that I have the correct order; this is my educated guess.
OK then, so how do you know that you have the right songs on the list? Adam and Kris have sung lots of songs that aren’t on their albums. Believe me, it took me days–and a lot of trial and error–to figure it out. My actual thought process was very circular, but there is definitely a method to my madness. If you’d like to see it, Click Here.
If you’re still feeling dubious about this whole rock opera thing (which I’m guessing you are) here are some other factors worth considering:
- Adam and Kris are geniuses
- They each have significant formal musical training; Adam in musical theater, and Kris in classical orchestral music.
- They may have had help. At the very least, I think that some of Adam’s friends helped a little.
- Some of their songs, though written by others, were written specifically for Adam and Kris. This means that they had some input into what they wanted the songs to sound like and communicate.
- Other original songs, though written without Kris or Adam in mind, were often changed in sometimes subtle, but important ways. A few of these songs have demos available online, so you can compare the demos to the final versions to see what changes were made.
- Even for well-known songs like “Mad World” or “Heartless,” an artist still has quite a bit of freedom in how s/he arranges a song, as we have seen both Kris and Adam do. I tried to work with more recent performances of covers to figure out where a song fits in the puzzle.
- Adam and Kris are geniuses.
I am going to discuss in detail how I decided where each song fits, but, first, here is an overview of the factors I considered.
Is a song upbeat and happy, sad and melancholy, angry, hopeful, etc.? It’s likely, for example, that a song like “Send Me Your Angels” will not be immediately followed by “Sure Fire Winners.”
Basically, what is a song about? Since a song can have multiple meanings, is it possible to figure out what a song means to them? If two songs seem to be talking about the same thing, they’re more likely to be connected.
Are there two songs that share similar words or phrases? Sometimes, if you parse out the lyrics of these songs, you can see that they actually look like two parts of the same conversation.
The songs on this list range from singer/songwriter style to dance pop to glam rock to musical theater. Songs with very different styles are less likely to be connected.
A song will often echo a theme of its next-door-neighbor in its music. For example, one of the first instances of this that I spotted is how the introductory piano music in “Bring it Back” echoes the melody of the chorus in “Voodoo.”
Introductions and Conclusions
Some songs have rather lengthy introductions or conclusions before or after the vocals, while, in others, the singing starts or stops more abruptly. Songs with with more elaborate introductions tend to go at the beginning of scenes. Likewise, songs with more definitive conclusions tend to go at the end of scenes.
OK, so now that we’ve go that covered, let’s get on with the show!
This little rock opera ends with a rousing interpretation of Don’t Stop Believing, which may actually make this “analysis” even more of a fail than previously believed. I would love to analyze this analysis further, but I was out until 6am last night. And I have to go out again in a few. I just don’t have the time or mental capacity to do this at the moment. I’m sure with the recent successes of American Idiot and even Rock of Ages will ensure this is going to be Broadway’s next big hit, so please share your thoughts on the soon-to-be next great American musical.