POODLE HAT REVIEWS!!!

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WeirdAlsBestFriend
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Post by WeirdAlsBestFriend »

Cool.
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Post by HappyGilmore »

WeirdAlsBestFriend @ Jan 26 2008, 12:48 AM wrote: Umm... Ok? I knew what Leprosy was. So it's basically just a bunch of bad jokes about it?
I actually quite like Party at The Leper Colony. Hilarious.
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Post by weirdojace »

Poodle Hat hasn't aged very well... it's not very easy to listen to anymore. I remember loving it when it first came out, but honestly... now... ugh. Any TMBG fans here? You know how Flood is a trainwreck that had potential? This album's kinda like that.

I think what brings this album down is its lack of truly inspired originals. The only ones I like a lot are Hardware Store (this will always be the best song Al has ever done, no matter what) and Why Does This Always Happen to Me. Typically Al's originals are better than the parodies, but not in this case. And even then, the parodies on this album are pretty weak too.

Let's look at the problems with this album:

First off, like 90% of the songs are nothing but lists. Lists aren't very funny. It's just randomness, really. Just look:
Couch Potato - a list of TV shows
Hardware Store - a list of tools
Party at the Leper Colony - a list of bad leprosy puns
Wanna B Ur Lovr - a list of pickup lines
A Complicated Song - not a list, but it sure is disorganized
Ode to a Superhero - basically a list of Spider-Man characters
Bob - a list of palindromes
eBay - a list of items bought on eBay

See? Just one formula of songwriting here.

Not to mention the parodies are of songs that were pretty forgettable or already dated. Couch Potato, a weak parody in its own right opens the album. Then we have Trash Day, does anybody even remember "Hot in Herre" anymore? And the original to "eBay" even pre-dates Running with Scissors I think. The only parodies on here that I really even like are ACS and eBay anyhow. The rest are just... very very bleak.

Now, for the originals. First we have the amazing Hardware Store which is appropriately the opening original. Unfortunately you can only go downhill from here. Party at the Leper Colony is not only boring musically, but lyrically as well. Wanna B Ur Lovr is a funny idea that just goes on way too long, if it was maybe 2 minutes shorter it could've been comedy gold. It should have ended after the giant innuendo verse. WDTAHTM is a gem in a cave of rocks, it's excellent. Bob is a cool idea but isn't the least bit memorable. And then we have the mess that is Genius in France. Yes, I love Zappa. Yes, I know it's a style parody of Zappa and I understand what Al was trying to do. But geez, it's one joke that GOES ON FOR NINE MINUTES. This song could have very well been a 3 minute song and it would've been okay probably. But... this... okay, yes Albuquerque is good as a long song, and it works because Al keeps it interesting. He just doesn't pull it off here. Sorry.

Now Straight Outta Lynwood, that's a solid album. I hope he keeps going in that direction.

Edit: Also just let it be known that I do respect Genius in France as a music composition. I mean, it's possibly the most complicated original he's ever done. Maybe if only a different set of lyrics were over the music, it'd be a good song...
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Post by Big Spoon »

weirdojace @ Jan 25 2008, 08:00 PM wrote: And the original to "eBay" even pre-dates Running with Scissors I think.
It does, but that doesn't stop it from being a great parody, in my mind at least.
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Post by sethmartin »

I agree with Jace pretty much. I dug Poodle Hat when it first came out but it kinda got old quick. SOL is almost a year and a half old and I still have all the songs on the ipod and listen to them a lot. As for PH, I think I had forgotten most of it after about 6 weeks, but here's a bit of a review....

Couch Potato- I think it was pretty necessary to do an Eminem parody seeing that he is one of the biggest musical artists ever. I think as far as Couch Potato goes, the song choice was good. I.E. choosing one of Em's serious ballads instead of one of his tongue and cheek songs. As far as the content of the parody... The whole TV thing has been pretty much exhausted for a while now. Especially the Al songs that just list TV shows. (Cable TV, Syndicated Inc) blah blah blah. So as far as a parody, not that funny not that original. I do, however, think that Al did a pretty impressive job copying Eminem's rhyme scheme and rapping. Even though the rapping is much better in White and Nerdy, Couch Potato is definitely better than Amish Paradise. If only it could have been as funny. Also I think maybe the tv stuff may have been a play it safe by Al do to the fact he really wanted to do an Eminem parody but had already had negative experiences with rappers (Coolio).


Hardware Store- I think what stands out with this song for me is the fact that I've never quite heard another song like it before. I think this is probably the closest thing we have ever come to a true Al original that isn't a style parody or a sound alike. Good Job.

Trash Day- I liked this one a lot when the cd first came out. I probably haven't listened to it in years though. Good solid parody that imitates Nelly's sound pretty good. Also completely original as far as it's content and lyrics go.

Party at the Leper Colony- Blah. Jon does some good drums on this. I think a better song would have been maybe just singing about one person. Maybe a girlfriend with Lepercy or something. Humorous the first time. After that, recycle bin.

Angry White Boy Polka- Was my favorite polka at the time. Loved the title, and I knew all of the songs featured. It was a good solid clever idea for a polka that fit very well. All the musicians shine in this. The only thing is, at times it sounds a bit too Jazzy or Poppy to be a polka. More like just an original medley than a polka. Thankfully, Polkarama came out that went back to old school polka. Don't really listen to this anymore, but at the time liked it very much.

Wanna B Ur Lvr- I thought this was a pretty good original. I would have probably liked it better if it was shorter though. First time I listened to it I thought it was really funny for the first half, then it got kind of repetitive and boring. Next please.

A Complicated Song- Good. Makes stabs at the original. Little edgy. The jokes are there in their fullest. Since every verse is about something different, it doesn't get dull or repetitive and flies by in a brisk manner keeping me laughing. Good Work.

Why Does This Always Happen To Me?- If Al told me that he just winged this whole song with Ben and just free styled the lyrics, I probably would like it a lot more. Other than that, I think it's ok. The music is good and the lyrics are funny. A bit morbid though. Kind of reminds me of a goth version of One of Those Days

Ode To A Superhero- Song is good but I think it was too soon to go back and do another parody of an old song set to the theme of a movie. Worked with Saga, this fell kind of short. However, a video of this song would have probably been a huge success.

Bob- If I actually believed Al came up with all of those palindromes himself, I would call this song genius. Do to the fact that they were probably all pulled from palindrome books and websites, not so much. I do like the fact he did it though and at the same time used it to poke fun of Bob Dylan.

Ebay- It was funny to hear Al doing boy band stuff. Boy bands aren't big anymore, but at the time, you could throw a rock and hit one. I think the melodies are really good in this. It isn't funny but it works in sort of a different way. It's hey, I can get away with listening to a good song without people going "You're listening to Backstreet Boys!!?!"

Genius in France- A good grand finale. Brilliantly composed. Don't listen to it much anymore but definitely dig it.


All in all, I liked Poodle Hat when it first came out. It was kind of a breath of fresh air from RWS. The songs on that album with the exception of a couple were more upbeat and poppy, where this album was a little more down key and dark. I think Al could have done a better job with coming up with an album title. The title Running With Scissors was brilliant and so was Straight Outta Lynwood. Do to the bad title, the CD inserts could not really have a good solid running gag like most of Al's albums.


Anyway. that's it. I'm looking forward to seeing some shows this summer and hopefully we get a new Album soon.

Sethie

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Post by louietheweaselfaceddogboy »

Boy bands aren't big anymore, but at the time, you could throw a rock and hit one.

And at that time, a lot of people wanted to. |)

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Post by Genius in Maine »

Five years after PH was released (wow, has it been five years already?) I find myself in agreement with Jace and Seth - it has not aged well. When it was new, I remember thinking it was one of my favorites, but it got weaker with each subsequent listen. "Couch Potato", in particular, has not held up very well, but I guess that's a risk which needs to be taken when making a list of then-current TV shows.
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Post by Big Spoon »

I have to say, it hasn't aged on me at all. I still love the album as much as I used to. CP is very dated now, and wasn't a great choice for a lead parody, but this is still Al's best album to date in my mind.
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Post by Orthography Enthusiast »

I sort of agree with the last couple of after-the-fact reviews. The only parody from PH that I still really enjoy is eBay. However, Hardware Store, WBUL, WDTAHTM and Genius in France all hold up well for me, though WBUL is probably mostly because it's such a fun song when Al performs it live. :wub:
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Post by Kevbo1987 »

I agree with the common consensus here. I loved PH when it came out, but listening to it recently (especially after the release of the far superior SOL) has left me disappointed. It just hasn't held up well, and both the originals and the parodies on SOL are for more creative.
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