Review Summary: Kidz Bop: the revolutionaries of business as usual
It was very tragic realizing that I had forgotten to submit my incredibly long review for "Kidz Bop 4" after having listened to the CD. Goddammit fate. It's been requested that I review a Kidz Bop album a number of times, and I couldn't have picked anything else other than the 4th edition released in 2003.
If you grew up in the 2000's, you've probably been tortured by the dreadful Kidz Bop TV commercials that you simply couldn't escape if you were a child who was raised by the TV. Look, it's become transparent that the music industry feeds on numbers, almost all of the "Now That's What I Call Music!" CDs have been certified platinum in the United States since 1998. Compiling a playlist from the Top 40 radio hits isn't hard, and they somehow always make them terrible because, well, it's a horrible idea. This is even more apparent with Kidz Bop. The Kidz have no skills whatsoever. The funny thing about it is that the lead vocals of these tracks aren't even performed by children, only the backing vocals in the song are sung by the untalented Kidz. It came as a surprise to me that a Kidz Bop album has never received anything higher than a gold certification in the U.S, and for a good reason. If you've ever heard about the 1997 "The Most Unwanted Song", you'd know that generally, the public doesn't like children's choirs. Especially when they're trying to sell you things.
Believe it or not, the music here isn't all bad. This was understandably the most successful Kidz Bop album at the time of release. It's easily the most memorable of the albums, followed up by the unforgettable eponymous debut of the Kidz (that's the one with "All Star"). Here we have the Kidz Bop album with the best selection of tracks. None of the original songs are bad, and the songs on "Kidz Bop 4" aren't even that insufferable. Sure, the production value is exceptionally smaller than the original songs, and the instrumentals practically sound like MIDI files, but the adult lead singers of these tracks actually deliver a decent cover performance. Since Kidz Bop is essentially glorified karaoke, I have to admit that this is some outstanding karaoke. The tracklist's highlights include Evanescence's "Bring Me to Life" (which I used to play with my friends to get a classic reaction), Christina Aguilera's "Beautiful", Jimmy Eat World's "The Middle" and even 3 Doors Down's "When I'm Gone". Truly some excellent original songs, and the covers here don't necessarily suck all of the dignity of the originals, but honestly, the real problem here is that Kidz Bop is a terrible idea.