Motorcade Of Generosity



by Jimmy USER (5 Reviews)
April 12th, 2006 | 17 replies

Release Date: 1995 | Tracklist

I was talking to a good friend of mine who shares my love for the band Cake when he said something startling. He claimed that Cake writes the catchiest songs since The Beatles. I immediately racked my brain for an example that would crush his ridiculous musings, but was stunned to find I agreed with him. When I hear a Beatles song, I am forced to drop what I'm doing and sing along. It's not like I have a choice, there's something unexplainable about the Beatles that involuntarily makes you sing along. Cake has this unexplainable virtue as well, and their debut album, Motorcade of Generosity, perfectly encapsulates everything that Cake is.

Cake's sound is as unique as their songs. On every track on Motorcade you'll find John McCrea'a (lead singer/guitarist) deadpan lyrical delivery, and his instantly recognizable slightly distorted acoustic guitar. Greg Brown plays electric guitar and never fails to deliver catchy riff after catchy riff. Vince DiFiore plays trumpet, helping to differentiate the band from other alt/funk bands of the mid 90's.

More important to Cake's music overall is their songwriting. The songs throughout Motorcade are top notch, and there is hardly miss among them. The combination of memorable licks and riffs combined with McCrea's catchy lyrics makes for a rewarding listening experience that is varied enough to keep you interested.

The album starts out with a string of pop songs infused with funky guitar riffs. Comanche has a mexican flavor to it, and Ruby Sees All is the first track to really show off DiFiore on trumpet and Brown on guitar. Up So Close is a slower, sadder song with clever lyrics commenting on how the closer you are to a person the more distorted they become to you.

Pentagram is a classic track and will get anyone smiling. The upbeat tempo and cheerful melody will almost make you forget that it is a song about human sacrifice. Once again, the lyrics are a high point and intertwine brilliantly with Brown's guitar.

The next track, Jolene, is a favorite among Cake fans. It starts with a hauntingly beautiful intro and has some of the most beautiful/bizarre lyrics ever. When McCrea sings "I want to pull you down into bed/I want to cast your face in lead," you understand exactly what he means. The song ends with a delightful breakdown featuring a guest "vocalist" screaming over a funk infused riff-fest.

The next string of tracks, Haze of Love, You Part the Waters and Is This Love are more catchy pop style songs. Is this Love has a particularly notable alternating bass and guitar line. The lyrics are very strong throughout.

Rock & Roll Lifetyle is perhaps the most well known song from the album. It is a very cynical commentary aimed at aging rockers. I Bombed Korea follows in the same idea, as a commentary on the Korean War through the eyes of an aging vet in a bar. It showcases Cake's skill at writing sad songs in an almost ironic, upbeat style. Next up is Mr. Mastadon Farm, a very groove oriented track with strange lyrics. I'm not sure what they're supposed to mean, if anything, and I consider it to be one of the weakest tracks on the album. Many Cake fans absolutely adore this song though.

The last song on the album is also one of the strongest and is a perfect ending. Ain't No Good is one of the catchiest songs ever written and the quirky lyrics greatly add to the song. You'll find yourself humming this song long after the album finishes.

Overall, Motorcade of Generosity is a consistent, varied and catchy album which will hold up after the 2nd, 3rd and 100th listen, and that is why it easily earns a 5/5 rating.

user ratings (113)

Comments:Add a Comment 
April 12th 2006


Album Rating: 4.0

I love this album. My favorite tracks are probably Comanche just because of the odd la-la-la's and trumpet line. Jolene is insanely catchy and Rock n' Roll Lifestyle just makes me want to get up and rock out. I wouldn't say this is a 5/5, just because the country influences can wear thin but I still beleive this holds some of Cakes most well written and catchy songs.

Your review was decent, but I think you should go into more detail about each track. Instead of describing one aspect of each song like saying they are catchy and poppy you should explain why and tell us more about the vocals, lyrics, and instruments. You did a good job for a first review.

This Message Edited On 04.12.06

April 12th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

I prefer to give more general reviews as opposed to overly focusing on details. You are right that I should include more details though, thanks for the constructive criticism.

April 12th 2006


Album Rating: 3.0

I cant say this is a five just yet, but this is also the Cake album I've heard the least. Rock N Roll Lifestyle is great, and the band seems up to shape.

April 12th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

I thought long and hard before giving it a 5, seeing how many people on this site almost deliberately avoid giving it to deserving albums. I ended up deciding that since this is not only one of my favorite albums, but also because I believe it to be a classic album in its own right it deserves a 5. I stand by my rating.This Message Edited On 04.12.06

April 13th 2006


Good review that makes a good trying to capture this album really is. Despite of the fact it's just mostly simple pop songs. The devil really is in the details here, you just have to love those songs for that. Exactly NO bad track on this record. My favourite is surely Jolene, I didn't know that also "real" Cake fans go for this one...
The guitar riffs aren't too complicated of course. But with Cake everything sounds just a bit different than other bands and you recognize them immediately. And that's one thing why they'll always keep entertaining me (riffs as well as the band)

April 14th 2006


Not a five for me, somewhere around a 3.
Good review though.
And I'd have to say Abba wrote the catchiest songs since The Beatles.

December 14th 2006


Album Rating: 3.5

Nice review, I like how you described McCrea's delivery as "deadpan"

If this album's even half as good as Cake's others I've got to get it.

December 14th 2006


Album Rating: 4.0

You really should get it if you enjoy other Cake albums. It's a lot more country influenced and upbeat, I'd say it's their second best studio album behind Comfort Eagle and Fashion Nugget.

December 14th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

If you like cake's other albums, you owe it to yourself to get this one.

October 21st 2009


Album Rating: 3.0

This is CAKE's best IMO, the only rival it has is Comfort eagle.

March 22nd 2010


I like Ain't No Good and I Bombed Korea, but that's about it.

July 1st 2012


Album Rating: 4.5

one of their best! CAKE rules!

July 28th 2012


haven't listened to this.. is it as good as comfort eagle?

December 13th 2012


Album Rating: 5.0

I think it's as good if not better, but it's a lot different from comfort eagle so I can't say for sure if you'd like it.

January 2nd 2015


still worth getting for Jolene

January 2nd 2015


Album Rating: 3.0

Band is borderline annoying

Digging: Ross From Friends - You'll Understand

December 20th 2016


Album Rating: 3.5

Dannnncing and channnnnting in sacrificial rites

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