‘Dirty Computer’ a Futurist Pop Masterpiece
The album centers on the relationship between mind and body, particularly in an unequal society that makes that relationship more strained for some than for others. The “dirty” in the title works on both of these levels: As Monáe told iHeartRadio, “We all come from the dirt, [but] we’re downloading, uploading things in our brains, in our hearts. […] I see all my bugs and viruses as features, as attributes. This album is about celebrating other ‘Dirty Computers’ who have been pushed to the margins of society.”
This physicalist conviction guides the album’s exploration of this marginalization. “Pynk like the folds of your brain,” she robotically intones, GLaDOS-style, on “Pynk,” later adding “Deep inside we’re all just Pynk.” The project of the album, then, is liberating our fundamentally equal selves from the “programming” that stratifies and divides us….