OK, so there's only one review...
|My reviews are based on how a song compares to the PUSA
version, i.e. does it do justice, and also gives points for adding something a
little new and extra to the song.... as long as its cool. Songs are
rated on a scale from 0 to 10. In my
system, a 5 is a good score. Everything above it is better,
everything below is worse. Also taken into account is that this is a
fan made album, meaning you need to understand the whole point of why this
album was made as you listen.
Lets get straight and to the Point:
1) Ladies and Gentlemen Part I (The Cool Lee Iceberg
Tribute Cushing Accordion Band):
OK, this is a pretty good song to start off the
album, but I seriously wanted to skip past it only 10 seconds into the
song. My ears were cringing at the terrible chords that remind me of
when my 5 year old cousin used to "play" my piano. Ugh.
Not to mention the lead singer sounds like "the doc, Doug
Podell" (lets see how many of you pick up on that!) There is
some harmonizing in the back with an annoyingly high pitched whine. Lovely.
When comparing to the original, I can not ROCK to this song now
matter how much they tell me. To give it a fair chance I listened to
it 2 more times, and I suppose you have to appreciate this song for what
it is; a fan produced tribute to the greatest, and my favorite, band
of all time. With that in mind any score can be raised, so I decide
the always humorous accordion gives this song some value.
2) Kitty (The Vice-Presidents of the United States of
Wow! What a difference a song makes!
No Hiss, great quality, sounds just like PUSA instruments. Very
professional sounding. The bass line is tweaked just slightly to
make it rock a bit harder. The meowing is nice and playful, very
entertaining. The lyrics are unchanged and perfected. Very
much like the original, except obviously for the vocals. The singing
is definitely enjoyable though, but I can't tell if the lead has an
English accent or what. Whatever it is, I liked it and thought this
is one of the Best Covers ever done. My only gripe may be to build
up on cussing out the Kitty a little more.
3) Japan (Slaps Accelerator)
Nice little song this one is. What
immediately hits you, are the lead female vocals. Takes a little
getting used to, but it's pretty cool. This band does a very nice job
capturing this song. I can sense some real energy in a couple of the
members with their "wahoos, woos, kick-its, and of course Hi-yaaaaaa."
It sound like there is just one guitar player, but all the chords
are nailed, with a few personal twists here and there. As the song
repeats "when we hit Japan" so many times, I was kind of sad
there wasn't really any changing of melody and harmonizing, but it is soon
forgotten as we rock out till fade out. I'm glad the wahoos where
still intact too!
4) Naked & Famous (Angry Naked Cow Instrumental Mix)
As you probably guessed, this one's got no
words. Probably done on a computer. Kind of like a MIDI file
maybe. ALL the key riffs of the song are covered, and repeated and
repeated and repeated.... The song goes a whole 5:28 At around
the 5 minute point, the mooing begins, hence the angry naked cow I
suppose? Computerized music isn't my thing, but It's a really great
interpretation of this song. You can't really sing along to it, but
you could probably work out to it. I dunno, I suppose you either
like this one or you don't.
5) Twig (Porn Wah Extended Reverb Funboy Live Mix) (3 of
As cheesy as I thought it was gonna be, I
really like the Porn Wah Wah sounds flaunting throughout the song. Its
a really fun touch added to an awesome song. After an elongated
intro, that beautiful bass line comes pummeling through, nice and slow.
A little while later, the vocals start. They are pretty good,
but a bunch of times It seemed like he was messing up on the words, or he
got cut off or something. At the bridge this band really shines, as
they get this funkadelic groove thing going that really blows your mind.
Nice and long too. "ONE MORE TIME" Back to the
chorus, and we are on are way out to the end of the song, which it tries
to do about three or four times. I guess it was distracted by some
lunatic yelling about "Sister Marie Elephant" among other
things...... Oooooooooooookkkkkkkkkay. That was interesting.
Overall, a job well done.
6) Presidents I Will Miss You (Green Cheese)
The first original song on the album, and it kicks
ass! Very simple bass line that could easily get stuck in your head.
No drums, and I think a bass guitar in the back. The vocals
are very humorous, and very true. You'll be singing along in no
time. He reminds me of Ballew with this song by taking such a simple
tune, and mixing up the melody ever so slightly to keep your interest.
Its a real winner, a mover, and a groover. Great Job!
7) Back Porch (Shane Speal & The Prosthetic
If PUSA ever played at a Hoe Down, it would no
doubt sound something like this. Imagine the band in "Back to the
Future III" with a couple cigar box guitars and you'll have an idea what
this sounds like. This song has always been about having a good
time, and this band portrays it beautifully. I liked how there were
a bunch of people singing together the whole time. And the interlude
nonsense rambling is really enjoyable. The instrumental rock out
part was scrapped, and no extra drumming for "chicky on the
drums" Oh well, I still liked it.
8) Peaches (The Dingbats)
Sounds like a one-man show at first, but someone
seems to join in later. The whole song is very soft, unfortunately,
and kind of has a lot of hiss. The song actually is sung more as a
folk song, and kind of loses its rock edge without any long and heavy
chords. After the "LOOK OUT" part is a special goodbye
message to (guess who) the presidents. Take it away Dave.... Who I'm
assuming is one of the dingbats and not Dederer. Anyhow, that famous
chorus gets sung one more time, and the song is done.
9) Volcano (Sulphur Oxide Mixdown) (Game Program)
This is a very cool cover song. Surprisingly
it's a computer made instrumental song, and it's awesome. Volcano was
perhaps my favorite song from II, so it's surprising to me that I like
this cover despite sounding very different than the PUSA original. In
fact, I bet if someone had played it for me, I would never have been able
to make a connection between the two. But don't get me wrong, this
song is very worthwhile. It's very peaceful, not much like a
volcano. It kind of reminds of a song from a video game (Donkey Kong
Country, the Ice Stage) and for some reason I was also thinking of
In the Hall of the Mountain King. I don't really know why, this song
just gives me this whole Ice Cave type image. I had to struggle, but
I eventually recognized definite riffs from volcano, and they are
synthesized and arranged superbly. Top Notch song. I think I
could hear something mumbled into the microphone at the beginning and end,
but all I could definitely make out was "thank you."
10) So There (The Artist Currently Known As Turkeyboy)
Yup, another original song. Well, its
only got about four chords in this song, but this song really shines in
the lyrics. Turkeyboy shows his acclaim for The Presidents by
complimenting all three. It was also enjoyable to hear good usage of
the PUSA vocabulary spread about the song. Very simple words, that
definitely resonate with The Presidents sense of humor. (Chris why don't
you grow some Hair! Ha!) Each verse is capped off with a chorus of
So There x4. While not quite as catchy as "Presidents We Will
Miss You", It's definitely a good tribute song. At one point So-There
becomes So-lo, and Turkeyboy entertains your ears with a lovely rendition
of the meow mix theme. Great stuff.
11) Tiki God (live) (Insane Ian & Crotch)
Finally something to rock out to! I
always loved the drums for this song, and it retains its dominant presence
felt in this cover. Lots of fills and fast, crazy beats. Excellent!
The Guitar has got an awesome sound to it, but it is way too soft.
It should have been closer to the mic, so I could experience its
flowing power. The vocals are pretty clear, and dead on. You
just want to sing along by the time you're at "naaa na-na naa naaa na."
Good band + Good song = Good time. Afterwards, Ian reminds
everyone this song was by The Presidents, and his wild crowd of 2 or 3
cheers and applauds.
12) Lump (live) (FOG)
Second one up from FOG, lets see if they can
do justice to the Big Hit. I like the vocals better than
instruments got things taken care of pretty good as well. Boy does
this band take "everybody solo" seriously! It gets a
little hectic, but its all good. Nothing that new or different
however in this, but a solid PUSA cover none-the-less.
13) Sunshine (Punk Version) (Bereft)
OH MAN! This song is unbelievable!
I am soooooooo tempted to say The Presidents should have recorded it
this way. Bereft has taken this song to a new level. It's
totally recognizable, but it's punk. Another song sung with an
English accent, that is both hilarious and really cool. It's not
that English accents are funny, but it's putting it in context with a song
I've only heard by The Presidents. Lots of energy and feeling, make
this a great cover with lots of originality and personality on a classic
Presidents song. I'm just gonna have to whip out Pure Frosting
14) Wake Up (Mono Glory) (Static Box)
There are a lot of Presidents songs that I can
just listen to, and every single second of the song is pure bliss. It's
like they have found the perfect combination of notes and chords that just
strike you in the head non-stop the entire song. There is no other
word to accurately describe it than perfection. To me, Wake Up is
one of those songs. There is not one part I don't like, not one part
I think is kinda bad, not one part I think is pretty good. The whole
song is amazing from start to finish. Now that I've built that up a
bit, Let me say Wake Up (Mono Glory) is my Favorite Song on this album, but
not just for covering such an amazing song. After all, there were a
lot of amazing songs covered on this album. This song just reached
out to me, rejuvenating everything in me I like about the PUSA version.
When I hear him yell out "Ooooooh Laa la la" I can just
see him totally immersed into the music and the moment. Its an
awesome feeling. The instrumental solo is preserved wonderfully, as
is the entire song. Incredible layering of bass and guitar riffs.
The ONLY downfall to this one is that its Mono! Do not listen
to this song through headphones. In fact, this whole album to me
sounds better without headphones (I tried both). In case you have
not been able to tell already, this track is my PICK OF THE ALBUM!
15) Ladies and Gentlemen Part III (The Cool Lee
Iceberg Tribute Cushing Accordion Band)
I think Chris Ballew summed it all up nicely
in Kill the Cake when he said "something so perfect shouldn't go on
to damn long." This is the exactly the same as track 1, but with
updated lyrics. "Goodbye to three great gentleman, and even
though they are gone, well now ladies and gentleman, they'll live
on, rock on, live on, rock on. Believe me you are reading this in
your head better than it sounds. In fact, the lyrics are the only
redeeming factor to this song. At the end they applaud The
Presidents, all two of them. Oh well.
*Bonus Track* Born in Bellevue, Basketball Dreams/Magic
(Evil Petting Zoo)
If you can somehow make it all the way through
15 without turning it off, the hiss comes back on and a new band picks up
with two more songs. At first it sounds like the same band as tracks
1 & 15, but these songs are actually pretty good. Born in
Bellevue has some actual singing! And in the same key this time!
Are you going to the PUSA concert, going to the PUSA show! Next
they transition into a cover of the hidden track from the second
Presidents album. This is actually pretty funny, complete with
whispering and the same background tune. The funny part is that it's
not a little kid who needs help knowing what to say. Good enough to
get a decent score from me!
Overall, this is a really cool CD. There are some very good songs on
here, but more importantly, I feel this CD was a great way to pay tribute
to a band that's so special to so many of us. Obviously it is us who
this CD will appeal to, and that's good because that is who it is for, as
well as The Presidents. I hope Chris, Dave and Jason all realize how
amazing we think they are, and that we will continue to support them and
their music forever.
The combined average of ratings for all 16 tracks was 7.15625 And
I know you were all curious out to five decimal places.