Review Summary: Holy comedy album, Batman!
In ‘Jam It in the Hole’ Electric Six sing, “Stop! We are good times. We're from the 80s and we're here to help.” The notion seems ridiculous at first, but as the music plays, and as time goes by, it literally feels like time is going backwards. Dick Valentine’s bizarre vocal performance mainly attributes to this as he does his best black man impersonation, totally ecstatic over what he’s preaching, except for one difference - this dude is babbling about the signs of the Zodiac. He doesn’t mean any of what he says, of course, but one can’t help feeling a bit creeped out by the whole thing - the singer’s fake performance is uncannily convincing. Afterward, when the dust settles, the reality of the situation sets in and the listener nervously laughs at his own stupidity. Strap yourselves into the rocket, kiddies, Electric Six aren’t slowing down anytime soon.
Now, I could go on about how unintentionally disturbing the album is, but I won’t, for good reason. Ultimately, it’s Dick’s vindictive willingness to do whatever it takes to be an embarrassment that packs the album with laughs. In a land where Weird Al is missing and The Lonely Island’s new singles are lacking, Electric Six are here to do what they do best – make a comedic album that is actually funny. Dick’s performances may make him out to be a crazed fanatic, obsessed with the apocalypse, but if the ridiculousness of that, in itself, doesn’t get you off your seat, nothing will. Electric Six work hard to loosen people up, and Zodiac
is the drug to do just that.
It doesn’t take much to realize that Electric Six is doing what they always do. They’re back with their usual loony approach to rock and funk, and make no effort to compromise or slow down. Pairing the singer’s psychopathic yells with eerie, female backing vocals is hilarious and really gets the train rolling. Once it gets rolling, it is impossible to stay still as it rocks along with catchy riffs, and the occasional piano, sax, etc. Really not a complex album, they make do with what they have, and it seems that’s good enough. It’s perhaps not as replay worthy as their older material, but this isn’t the kind of album you’d want to compulsively listen to anyway. For those who just want something to laugh about, Zodiac
is here to scratch your itch for you.