Double Take–Flight of the Conchords

May 5, 2008 at 12:38 pm Leave a comment

I wrote about Flight of the Conchords’ new album in the Weekly Wrap-up. But now that I’ve spent some more time with the Kiwi boys, I have to slightly adjust my original take.

I love this album, I really do. Bret and Jemaine are hilarious, smart, and extremely talented. But I think this album suffers from over thinking and over producing. On their EP, “The Distant Future,” the live tracks soar. They really benefit from the boys’ on-stage ad libbing. Take the song, “Robots.” On “The Distant Future,” “Robots” is one of the funniest songs. But on “Flight of the Conchords,” it falls kind of flat. Most of the words are the same, but the inflection is missing. I think what makes me saddest of all is the loss of Jemaine’s hilarious idea to “sniff this one.” In its place, we get “I noticed they’re dead.” That’s…not funny.

Another song that loses something in translation is “The Most Beautiful Girl in the Room.” This song never fails to make me laugh (sample lyrics: I can’t believe that I’m sharing a kebab/with the most beautiful girl I have ever seen with a kebab), but the slick producing job and the loss of the audience reaction makes the song less effervescent.

I’m not saying the whole album is a bust; I adore “Hiphopopotamus v. Rhymenocerous,” “Mutha’uckas,” and “Ladies of the World.” Maybe because these weren’t on the EP and weren’t recorded live, I don’t know. I do know that I sympathize with the too many mutha’uckas uckin’ with Bret’s shi. And I appreciate Jemaine’s assertion that he is trying to correct his sexist lyrics (told to the lovely bitches and hos).

For the best Conchords experience, you really need both “The Distant Future” and “Flight of the Conchords.” A word of warning: the actual, physical CD of “FotC” has amazing album artwork and the best trippy-awesome, two-sided poster. You won’t get that by downloading it.

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