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the educational album - released September 1997 - Reviews
it's not the sucky album!!
the educational album reveals to us that a) the internet is a great learning tool; or b) the internet is an ever-mutating worthless pile of broken links; or c) the piz is the best band in the world.
"a language lesson in five parts" proves a fitting start for the educational album. for one thing, it gets us all in the mood for learnin'. plus, it gives the listener a somewhat-confused reorientation of perspective, indoctrinating us into the land of ridiculousness just in time for the remainder of the album.
as you can probably tell from the song "macramé," macramé and its (side) effects on the nervous system are still an under-researched area.
there seem to be subliminal messages in "little johnny could really ride a pony"...
"the girl with the funny twitch (original version)" shows its true colours as a nkotb tribute of sorts.
"blood on the saddle" is a cowboy song with the piz all gathered around the campfire, yet somehow the accoutrements of modern life enter into this timeless masterpiece...
"attack of the grizzly bear" and "dismembered and bloodied torso" quickly follow the camp-out like the second two-thirds of a cowboy-gone-horror movie. delightful!
"the monkey song (old version)" is maddeningly paced with (aptly) accentuated yelling.
"a is for albigensian" has some crazy bass, and who ever suspected the religious connection to butthead before hearing this song?
"cornwallis in the fray (annoying version)" is obviously a touching and intimate moment for the band and its fans...
"don't hit my car" is strikingly peace monkey flimpful in its execution, and for good reason, i don't doubt.
"john" was played in complete darkness by the piz, and you can tell.
"psychedelic song (super extra long version)" reveals to us the breadth of what was only a second or two of secret sound on the original circus maggots cassette...
the girth of "steven is the fat king" is hard to comprehend, but it's impossible to miss the point here...
a daily dose of the quaint "bathroom song" is said to stimulate good kidney health, and i believe it.
the instrumental "as the rainbow fades" brings precisely that eponymous image to mind...
"i'm an ugly bastard" used to be my song before the lyrics were applied, so now i have to fight feeling insulted every day for the rest of my life about this...
"planet 6," that wonderful blue-gray glowing treacherous planet... an instrumental, very cinematographic and 60's, too, with a bit of anonymous snoring at the end... perhaps the sleeping giant of the planet.
"the druid song"... another song done as a class assignment (the other being "a is for..."). this one is catchy, with notable lyrics ("he didn't invent the dime") and fascinating timing throughout.
"get out of the bathroom" is largely instrumental, with a cheech and chong influence thrown in at the end.
a surreal sound expression, the "peanut man" features a peanut/misc. vender with the sales skills of a jehovah's witness, and (apparently) food that speaks, advertising itself for consumption, etc.
"my name is sussssy (take 1)" is a favourite among piz fans, and it increases spelling skills in children ages 5-8!
"the phone song" completes a time-honoured tradition in the drainage pipe and at other venues at which the piz play...
"don't step to this" is one of the shortest raps on record.
"bobby"... there's some understorytelling going on here in the mix..
in "spontaneous comb," the piz members go a capella and, in the nature of their communal performance, show great camaraderie and cooperation in this medley of 'greatest hits.' a charming and wonderful commercial for themselves.
what follows is a very rich and velvety recording of "pancakes & broccoli (live)," a song that the piz does with great gusto when in concert. ("next up is the piz.")
"outer space"... answering machines in space, what'll the piz think of next??!
over fifteen minutes long, the marathon "homework" is an exercise in itself (and not a loop; it's all done live!). the song is supposed to be homework-like via two specific aspects: "boring" and "repetitive." in the techno generation, i must say that i can find enjoyment and nuances of variation in even the longest piz songs, even the ones that were created specifically to make listeners groan.
from the "language lesson..." through "homework," this is, overall, an extremely interesting album. you're sure to learn something, and the band shows surprising consistency and perseverance by sticking to the theme of education... in its own way, the educational album is definitely on par with other 'theme albums,' for instance, say, the beatles' sgt. pepper...
We liked a few songs.
- The Konshu Kabuki
compilation of outtakes from the one band that never had any. this album does not exist but it's amusing entertainment nonetheless.
- Mr. Salty