steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

review
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info opinion

Andrew Wagner

"Thank You, But Our Princess Is In Another Castle" CD

Losing Blueprint

Genres: indie pop, folk rock, comedy rock

Andrew Wagner
12A Day St.
Waltham, MA 02453

 June 17 - 23 2002

The comedy rock genre isn't very fertile ground nowadays.  Championed by aging bozos like Weird Al and They Might Be Giants, it seems as though the style is becoming a bit passť.  As such, when I was confronted by Andrew Wagner's new album, I wasn't expecting much.  However, much like Wagner's main project, Holy Mary, Mother of Bert, this album was completely fantastic.  Not only were the songs catchy and marvelously written, but the lyrics were also fantastic, excelling in a sort of "corny but also clever" way.  Not only that, Wagner's few instrumental pieces succeed on their own, proving that there's more to his music than just a couple of jokes.

On this album, Wagner plays the traditional dork - interested in nerdy subjects like mathematics and, as the album's title suggests, video games.  He plays the part perfectly, creating wonderful, yet somewhat geeky, songs that are living examples of wordplay perfection.  "An Allergic Reaction" is set in a doctor's office, in which a girl is being tested for allergies.  Wagner's character is predictably outspoken in the story, and the lyrics are amazingly well-done, using imagery to create a perfect, almost poetic song.  By the end of the story, the girl's mother has left, embarrassed, because she has forgotten her insurance card, and Wagner is left alone and dejected.

Other songs, like "Congratulations on your Decision to Become a Pirate" are more comedic.  "Congratulations..." features Wagner proclaiming his love to a pirate with a series of humourous one-liners and word trickery ("I would swim five hundred nautical miles to freeboot one of your patch-eyed, gold-toothed smiles").

Throughout Thank you..., Wagner shows that he truly is multi-talented; he is both a great songwriter and an excellent comedian.  If you've enjoyed his material with Holy Mary, Mother of Bert, you're in for a real treat.  Ladies and gentlemen, this is Wagner at his best.

84%

Matt Shimmer