Is “Classy Downtempo Music” Really More Appropriate For Children Than “Gangster Rap”?


Yesterday an entertaining screed penned by an outraged tenant of the Financial District luxury palace 90W and posted on StreetEasy made the rounds, causing great mirth. “Here’s a review of my horrible experience living at 90 Washington Street,” it began; the complaint went on to name as building offenders “people who blast their bass at all hours,” “drunken kids smoking marijuana,” and best of all, the inappropriate soundtrack in the lobby. “90W used to pretend they’re a luxury building by playing cool downtempo/ambient music, which gives the feeling that you’re in a boutique hotel,” the aggrieved tenant wrote, “but lately they’ve been playing Ne-Yo and other terrible rap songs which are inappropriate for the small population of children living in the building. We’re not at the mall – bring back the classy downtempo music, and kill the gangster rap.” Now.

First off, now we know: there are people in this world who consider “downtempo/ambient” music “classy,” rather than say, “Euro-trashy,” or “worthless boutique-y.” Those compilations that sat lonely on the rack at Virgin Records back when there was a Virgin Records did not go gentle into that good night–far from it. Instead, they are currently providing the soundtrack to someone’s my-first-condo-dreams, modestly tapping out lullabies over the wireless baby monitor that connects modular kitchen to minimalist playroom. Not like at mall, where they play gangster rap. Which, what?!

Last we checked, ambient techno was the go-to consumer paradise shopping prompt, not stuff with curse words in it. (Unless we’re talking about Supreme here.) And for another thing, Ne-Yo? Loverman he may be, but gangster he is assuredly not. Or are they trying to say that the management has been bumping the The Chronic in the elevators and such? In which case let’s call this what it is: a stealth advertisement for the building aimed at every rich human under 40 in the city. There are many of them, and they all like Dr. Dre. Most of them are childless, and they abhor whiney children and their downtempo dance music. Because honestly, who likes a baby that listens to Moby?

Terrible Management – DO NOT RENT AT 90W