Sound — 7
I'm going to start by saying that I love Les Claypool. This review may seem harsh, but the fact is that I just am disappointed by his work on this CD. You'd be much better off buying a Frog Brigade or Primus disc. The sound of this album is simply bland. It lacks the creativity and catchiness you'd expect from him. The basslines are awesome, but they all sound relatively similar, and are reminiscent of Sausage due to that they are very busy. That is actually part of the problem. While the basslines are intense and very well made, they only occasionally get into a nice groove; they are more liable to feel tense. The guitar lines are basically nonexistent, they're thrown very far into the background and basically used as noise-creating devices to make the basslines sound cooler. The drumming is borderline annoying because of the extensive high-hat usage. Basically, the whole CD (save a few songs) feels like he's got no good new ideas and is falling back on bad ones. Mind you, there are some great songs on this CD. One Better is a very groove-filled (I really don't want to say "groovy") number that is just amazing, Filipino Ray is reminiscent of some tunes off of the Frog Brigade's Purple Onion, Nothin' Ventured feels like a b-side from Animals Should Not Try to Act like People, the instrumental Off-White Guilt, and there's the ever-lovable Robot Chicken theme song. The other songs range from mediocre (Rumble Of The Diesel, to unlistenable. I'm being generous with my grade because the good songs are really really good songs.
Lyrics — 6
Okay, the lyrics really ranged from the song. Back off Turkey, Phantom Patriot, and Iowan Gal are all extremely repetitive. They literally repeat one line over and over again. For Back Off Turkey it's "coming around again," for Phantom Patriot, it's "The Phantom Patriot" in an extremely annoying voice, and for Iowan Gal it's "I Got Me An Iowan Gal." The first time you listen to these, they seem alright, but after a time or two, it's just completely boring. One Better, Rumble Of The Diesel, and Filipino Ray, however, have great lyrics. Les' singing ranges, too. Everything ranges, this doesn't feel like a CD, it feels like a compilation. On some tracks, I love his voice, in others, it feels like he's trying to be as annoying as possible. It's really too bad.
Overall Impression — 6
This album feels like a bunch of B-Sides that weren't good enough to go on other records. It is simply not very good, save about a third-half the songs. The most impressive songs are easily One Better, Nothin' Ventured, Rumble of the Diesel, Robot Chicken, Filipino Ray, and Off-White Guilt. They are really good songs, and I would've prefered it if they had just cut the other songs off the album and kept those. Although, to be fair, the other songs are what make those 6 songs stand out. It's just a mediocre album that is nowhere near representive of Les' genius. I suggest getting Frog Brigade's Set 1 or Purple Onion if you want some Claypool that isn't Primus. If the cd were stolen, I would not buy a new copy, I would simply download the aforementioned good songs. It's really not worth the money people will pay, and I'm wishing I had waited for a review before picking it up. I listen to One Better and Filipino Ray constantly, though, they are genuinely amazing songs.