They Might Be Giants



by Chris Jackson USER (177 Reviews)
September 21st, 2005 | 14 replies

Release Date: 1990 | Tracklist

They Might Be Giants have been around since 1986 when they released there s/t debut. Since then they have released nine albums and are still going today. Flood was released in 1990 and was the bands 3rd release.Out of the six TMBG albums I own this is my 3rd favorite. This is known as TMBG's most popular album and it has most of there hit songs. Although this is there most popular or succesful album it is not my favorite, but it is still awesome in so many different ways.

Members - John Flansburgh
John Linnel

Additional Members - Marion Beckenstein, Joel Mitchel, Rick McCrea, Mark Feldman, Frank London, Alan Bezozi, Charlie Spalvida, Arto Lindsay, Roger Moutenot

They Might Be Giants is an alt/rock or better described as a nerd rock band. They have very clever lyrics, catchy songs, and they use a wide variety of instruments.

First off I would like to address that John's voice is not for everyone. He has a very nerdy voice, and he sings like the lead singer of Cake, or in a monotone voice. Although this may annoy some people, I personally love it. The nerdy/monotone vocals are very effective in songs like "Particle Man" "Dead" and "Someone Keeps Moving My Chair." The voice may get on your nerves at first but you must give it a fair chance. These songs are extremely catchy and they will get stuck in your head and stay there for a very long time.

TMBG uses a large variety of instruments on Flood. The violin really stands out on tracks like "Istanbul" and "We Want A Rock." Accompanied by the violin are handclaps, trumpets, and trombones. Although there are two brass instruments used in a few songs they don't get in the way with the music, they make the sound more full and add a lot of depth to these songs. The trumpet has a very nice solo on "Your Racist Friend" and the trombone comes in on "Whistling In The Dark."

There are a lot of tracks on this album. TMBG show a lot of range on this album. They go from the childish "They Might Be Giants" and "Whistling In The Dark" to the eerie "Hearing Aid". They also throw in some great rock songs like "Birdhouse In Your Soul" to the nerdy and quirky "Particle Man." "Hot Cha" and "Dead" feature some piano playing and "Minumum Wage" sounds like a theme sound for an old western television show. "Instanbul" has some great vocals and superb violin playing. Even the opening track is inventive with the opera singing. TMBG will not dissapoint if you want a good variety of songs.

If you were wondering about the lyrics on Flood, they are very witty and clever. "Dead" features some great lyrics about reancarnation and "We Want A Rock" talks about fads and everyone wanting something. Sometimes the lyrics can get hard to understand, like the humor of "Your Racist Friend." All in all if you want some smart, clever lyrics than you should give these guys a listen.

Clever lyrics, lots of range, and a good variety of instruments. What else can these guys do. The best part about They Might Be Giants is that they can write extremely catchy songs. "Instanbul" "Birdhouse In Your Soul" "Whistling In The Dark" "Particle Man" and "Twisting" are some of the catchiest songs on the album. When I first bought this cd I thought some of these songs were just plain dull, but if you listen to them a few more times they get stuck in your head, and they will never leave. These songs arn't poppy they are just sort of childish and quirky.

Now to the downsides of the album. If you don't care about clever lyrics or just don't pay attention then you might not get the full effect or enjoy TMBG's as much as others. TMBG's can be hard to get into at first, and the vocals are nerdy so if you want something good the first time you hear it this may not be for you. Some people consider TMBG a novelty band, but I strongly object.

Overall the lyrics are clever and genious, the songs are catchy and there is a great variety of instruments that are spread out throughout the whole album. What more do you want? Once again TMBG is a a nerd/alt rock band and if you like the genre than it doesn't get any better than this. I'm not a huge nerd/rock fan but this stuff is just magnificent. If you've heard some of TMBG's music than you should not hesitate to buy this, if you are new to this band than this would be the percfect album to start out with.

Overall 4/5

Pros: Very Clever lyrics
A good variety of instruments
Cathcy songs
Some of the best alt/rock of the 90's

Cons: Some may not like the nerdy vocals
The lyrics may be hard to understand.
Some tracks are not needed.

Comments are always awesome and it would be nice if you could rate my review, helpful or not.

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user ratings (115)

Comments:Add a Comment 
September 21st 2005


good review man, but the vocals it what kills the band for me.

The Powdered Milk Man
September 21st 2005


nice review...i like this cd a lot

and the phenomenauts might go on tour with they might be giants...i would sell my soul to see that.

The Powdered Milk Man
September 21st 2005


nice review...i like this cd a lot

and the phenomenauts might go on tour with they might be giants...i would sell my soul to see that.

September 21st 2005


double post.

September 21st 2005


Album Rating: 4.0

They Might Be Giants on tour with the phenomenauts would be amazing!!!!

Thanks for the comments, and keep them coming. Also please click if my review was well written or not, I would appreciate it.

This Message Edited On 09.21.05

April 9th 2006


Album Rating: 4.0

somewhere on napster i found a group of young schoolchildren singing particle man. It was quite hilarious, im pretty sure TMBG put it on one of their 230198203812031 b-sides and rarities compilations. but yeah, great album, after buying this i went around and was able to sucessfully turn alot of my friends into diehard fans.

April 13th 2006



August 1st 2006


Album Rating: 3.5

great review. a good giants album, but not my favorite either. minimum wage is funny, even though its really short. do you have sever tire damage? its a live album of them. thats my favorite album of theirs. 3.5/5

May 15th 2011


I've decided that the latin breakdown in Your Racist Friend is the greatest thing ever

June 29th 2011


Album Rating: 5.0

"The lyrics might be hard to understand" ... I suppose, if you don't speak English, you'd be correct. Otherwise .... NEG

February 16th 2012


not to put too fine a point on it

February 16th 2012


triangle man
triangle man
triangle man hates particle man
they have a fight
triangle wins
triangle man

suck it dylan

October 9th 2013


Minimum waaaaaaaaaaaage!!! *chutchaa*

Digging: Emptiness - Nothing but the Whole

October 9th 2013


thats their best song too

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