For an alternative view, check out Kyra Ho’s rebuttal article In Defence of a cappella
Pitch Perfect is a pretty good film, I’ll be the first to admit that. However, no matter how much love I have for that film and everyone in it I still find it truly impossible to enjoy a-cappella. From the way it can be hyphenated and not hyphenated to how it ruins songs that I cherish. Almost everything about it irritates the very fibre of my being.
It’s hard to fully quantify what exactly it is about a cappella that makes it so impossibly irritating for me because it really is just everything about this abomination of an art form. At the very core of the statement ‘white people have no culture’ you can find Chad, Dean, Derrick and Brad clicking their fingers and boo-whopping their cover of HUMBLE in a futile effort to resurrect the bloated corpse of Ronald Reagan in some sick pagan ritual.
I think I can say with full certainty that I have never in my life heard a song I liked and thought to myself, ‘You know what would make this better? If there was just no instruments and instead I had a bunch of over-enthusiastic people making noises at me.’ I would even go as far as to say no one has thought that, ever, because to do so would be so deeply inhuman and disgusting that you might accidentally create a horcrux for yourself. Whilst some songs do sound good when played acoustically I don’t think any song can be improved by being sung a group of preppy 20 something’s trying to get to nationals.
In saying this I do admit that some a-cappella songs can be catchy so I don’t think it’s the songs themselves that irritate me, rather the thing about a cappella that really grinds my gears is the people. If you took all the worst parts of a musical theatre kid and mixed in a couple of drops of someone who really loves Mr. Brightside you might get close to an a-cappella singer. They’re full of energy and ready to do you the favour of sharing their gift for ruining songs. There’s just something about the smiles and clicking and beatboxing that makes me want to aca-smother myself with a pillow. No one should be that excited to ruin a perfectly good song, it’s almost psychotic the way they tear apart beautiful art with a smile on their face.