::Weird Al Yankovic::Poodle Hat::
Following up to his album “Running with Scissors", Al got back at it with his eleventh album “Poodle Hat". If you haven’t heard of this album, don’t blame Al and don’t blame the media. Blame Eminem. The rapper allowed permission to do a parody, but no permission to do a music video, so they canned the whole music video thing. However, despite its not so impressive sales, there is still a good time to be had here as there almost always is with the “Weird Al" Yankovic albums. So lets get to it, shall we?
Couch Potato (4:18)
: This is what I was talking about in the opening paragraph. This is a parody of Eminem’s “Lose Yourself". It’s about how everyone is obsessed with watching TV. The verses include taking jabs at all the stuff we love like HBO, Reality TV, TiVo, American Idol, and Oprah. The lyrics are perfect going along with the music and the rapping is superb. Overall, a very enjoyable song and if you hate Eminem as I’m sure a lot of you do, this is a nice song to listen to and giggle at.
Hardware Store (3:44)
: Very fast singing here. The song is yet again about a seemingly useless subject, but packed full of hilarious verses and jumpy choruses. Its about a new hardware store that opens up in a boring, nothing-to-do neighborhood and Al cant be happier. The opening verse is where his friend tell him the news, and everything after that is about how he’s gonna be the first in line and various things he’ll by, “Gotta get a ruler for every room in my house." Again, a fantastic song. But d*mn can this guy talk/sing fast.
Trash Day (3:11)
: A parody of “Hot in Here" by Nelly. It is about living in a dirty, trashy apartment. “There’s something rotten here, you better hold your nose." If you didn’t like the original song, you might not like this song. The music is a direct port from the original. As far as Al’s voice, it is the same screechy voice that so many people love to hate.
Party at the Leper Colony (3:38)
: This is a really interesting song. It contains a whole lot of idioms about the anatomy and uses them in a literal sense. “She cried her eyes out." and “Hey buddy, don’t gimme no lip." Its music is that of a classic jazzy/blues band, saxophone included. Again, a fun song to listen to, but not the greatest.
Angry White Boy Polka (5:03)
: This is what Weird Al is really known for. Taking a whole lot of famous songs and mashing them up into an accordion driven polka song. This time, the songs are:
"Last Resort" by Papa Roach,
"Chop Suey" by System of a Down,
"Get Free" by The Vines,
"Hate to Say I Told You So" by The Hives,
"I Fell in Love with a Girl" by The White Stripes,
"Last Nite" by The Strokes,
"Down with the Sickness" by Disturbed,
“Renegades of Funk" by Rage Against the Machine,
"My Way" by Limp Bizkit,
"Outside" by Staind,
"Bawitaba" by Kid Rock,
"Youth of the Nation" by P.O.D., and
"The Real Slim Shady" by Eminem.
Again, a stroke of genius by the accordion playing odd guy.
Wanna B Ur Lovr (6:14)
: A fantastic song about using the cheesiest pick-up lines EVER. One of the greatest lines is “You look like Venus D’Milo if I just cut off your arms." Fantastic. If you ever wanted a compilation of this kind of stuff, Weird Al has granted your every wish. The chorus is pretty much exclaiming how he want you to be his “Lovr" cuz he just needs someone to love. Anyway, this is one of the best songs on the album. Really funny and every time I hear it I catch another stupid pick-up line that makes me wanna cry.
A Complicated Song (2:10)
: Another parody. This time of Avril Lavigne’s “Complicated". It is honestly one of the best songs he might have ever made as far as parody’s come. He is pretty much using the word “Complicated" and finding rhyming words to make stories that make you proud of the life you have, no matter what the details. The first verse is about going to a party that nobody else came to and there was 19 XL cheese pizza’s and you take them home which leads to “Why’d you have to go and get me so constipated." That line drew me in like the fish that failed ‘Bait Avoidance Class’. Take that you French Canadian pop star hottie!
Why Does This Always Happen to Me? (4:52)
: Probably my favorite song on the album. It is about the tale of a man who gets upset over minor issues in the middle of major tragedies. My favorite verse is about a breaking news report about an earthquake in Peru and how so many people are killed and buried alive and Al is upset because it interrupted “The Simpson’s." This is a great showcase of Al’s creativity, if you needed a refreshment, and it is just a great song to listen to for a nice cheering up.
Ode to a Superhero (4:52)
: A nice parody of “Piano Man" by Billy Joel. He is basically re-telling the events of the “Spider-Man" movie. While in the process, he makes fun of how Spider-Man wears tights and a “power rangers mask." Really great imitation here. Right down to the “La-de-da" part toward the end.
: This is a song with a very country feel. It is a song composed entirely of palindromes, for those of us who need a schooling once again, a palindrome is a word spelled the same backwards, as it is regularly. “Ah, Satan see’s Natasha" It is a very clever song, but not much more than that. There is nice harmonica and other various country instruments, but that’s about it.
: A parody of “I Want it That Way" by “The Backstreet Boys." It is about how he just buys all these random things from eBay. An Elmo lunch box, a slightly damaged golf bag, a “Dukes of Hazzard" ash tray, all from eBay. It is a clean song with some nice harmonization. Later he celebrates over being highest bidder. Really nice song and a top notch-ish parody. And even at the end he mocks “The Backstreet Boys" by not entirely ending the song when it sounds like it should be over. For the last ten seconds he just rambles “Eeee" like he’s trying to say eBay. Great, great humor.
Genius in France (8:56)
: It begins as the story of someone who is pretty d*mn stupid. Talking about how he got negative numbers on his SAT’s, and how if he was any dumber, they’d have to water him twice a week, but considering the facts, he’s still a genius in France. Now honestly, its pretty cruel to the French people out there, but its still friggin funny. He goes on to describe how he looks stupid, has an embarrassing physique, and doesn’t get along with a lot of other people, but in France, he is da man. “Would you take zee picture with me? I say Wee Wee." And again with the wee wee for like, 10 seconds. I mean, a grown adult male will laugh when he hears wee wee. This is a fantastic way for Al to end the song. Nearly nine minutes of talking about a stupid person in France. Perfect.
Weird Al does NOT disappoint with this almost unknown album. If you liked any of his previous albums, then you will love this album. It has excellent timing, great lyrics, fantastic music, and the parodies are near perfection. Really, another fantastic album by one of the greatest parody writers of our time and possibly of all time.
Weird Al is:
"Weird Al" Yankovic - accordion, keyboards, sound effects, vocals, background vocals, clapping, shouts
William K. Anderson - harmonica
Kim Bullard - keyboards
DJ Swamp - scratching
Tom Evans - saxophone
Ben Folds - piano on "Why Does This Always Happen To Me?"
Steve Jay - banjo, bass, sound effects, vocals, clapping, shouts
Tommy Johnson - tuba
John "Juke" Logan - harmonica
Warren Luening - trumpet
Herb Pedersen - banjo
Joel Peskin - clarinet
Lisa Popeil - background vocals
Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz - percussion, drums, sound effects, vocals, clapping, shouts, laughs
Lee R. Thomburg -trombone, trumpet
Carmen Twilley - background vocals
Ruben Valtierra - piano, keyboards
Julia Waters - vocals, background vocals
Maxine Waters - background vocals
Jim West - guitar, mandolin, sound effects, vocals, clapping, shouts
Dweezil Zappa - opening guitar solo on "Genius in France"