As promised, here are my revised rankings after a few more listens. Some song rankings have changed significantly, particularly #s 2 and 3, which were previously at the bottom of my original list! In both cases, the videos helped flip my appreciation of them:mrmeadows wrote:Just based on one quick pass through the album, here are my first-impressions. These WILL change after I get to really sit and let it sink all in:
2) Word Crimes
3) Mission Statement
5) Sports Song
6) NOW That's What I Call a Polka!
7) Lame Claim to Fame
9) Jackson Park Express
10) My Own Eyes
12) First World Problems
1. Word Crimes - This is the go-to song on the album. If I only have time to listen to one song, it's this one. Some of Al's best parody lyrics ever, and the music is catchy as hell. So at least something good came out of that "Blurred Lines" dreck.
2. Foil - Yup, this is a good song. At first I didn't know what to make of it...was it an old-school food song or a song about conspiracies? It just ends like that, after just a little over 2 minutes? I initially wrote it off as a throwaway track, but after watching the hilarious video it shot right up to being one of my favorites.
3. First World Problems - Initial reaction was that this was just a list song based on a Twitter hashtag, so was disappointed. But why NOT make a song based on Twitter-like jokes? Especially when you put Pixies-inspired instrumentation behind it! And the jokes in the song are actually very funny, and the video really enhances the enjoyment. Lately, it's been the song that has been the hardest to get out of my head.
4. Mission Statement - This is a strange one. At the moment, it's kind of a "skip track" for me, but only because one of the jokes of the song is having pleasant music and vocals singing UGLY corporatist language. It's a brilliant satire on business-speak, worthy of George Carlin, but it's kind of something I admire almost from a distance. It's not a song I necessarily "enjoy", but more just appreciate. It's unlike anything Al has ever done, and is perhaps his most stinging social commentary ever. That's why it ranks so high here, even if it isn't a track I will necessarily wear out from repeated listening.
5. Tacky - This is a strong parody entry, and initially I thought it was the best one. That's clearly changed, but it still cracks my Top 5. It's a simple, yet perfect concept. I hate the original because the lyrics are so damn repetitive, but Al's version manages to retain the snappy tune but at least give us new words to go with it, and never repeats himself. And it's funny.
6. Lame Claim to Fame - I really like this one! The music is fantastic, and I find the concept and lyrics very amusing. I live in LA, so I know people who do this kind of name-dropping all the time, so maybe that helps with my enjoyment. I still say the Kevin Bacon line is one of the cleverest lines on the album.
7. NOW That's What I Call a Polka! - It's the polka! What's not to like? Not sure it's my favorite all-time, but it's up there. Seems like the medley could use 2 or 3 more songs, but it's still darn good.
8. Handy - The album needed at least ONE just plain silly parody, and this was it. I mean, the other parodies on this album are--dare I say--downright sophisticated! "Handy" is kind of like getting a dose of old-school Al, like the guy who did "I Want a New Duck" and "Addicted to Spuds". Just take a goofy concept and run with it, and that's what he does. His lyric replacements are expertly done, and I find this extremely fun to listen to.
9. Inactive - I'm not as down on this one as some others, but it's definitely the least-best of the parodies. Still, I mostly like it. It has funnier lyrics than "You're Pitiful", so I don't mind the thematic re-tread. I agree that the mix is poor, and while it doesn't bother me THAT much since I know the lyrics, I do think it hurts the song.
10. Jackson Park Express - I think this one has the most growth potential for me. I like it, but I have listened to it probably the least of all of the songs, partially due to the length. But I do enjoy the Cat Stevens style spoof, and "story" being told is good. I probably just need a few more listens to start appreciating this one fully.
11. My Own Eyes - Yes, it rocks, but the lyrics are just kind of okay. Some of the things he "sees" are funny, others not so much. I like the refrain, but it's a little uneven for me.
12. Sports Song - Sort of a default "least-favorite" for me. I was tickled at it upon first listen, but got tired of it pretty fast. It's fine, but it's basically one-joke and I can't say I love marching band music. Still, it's short enough that it doesn't really wear out it's welcome, and it works for what it is. Still, it's probably the weakest track on the album.