Crispin Hellion Glover

Big Problem Does Not Equal the Solution. The Solution = Let It Be.

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Most actors who want to become rock musicians tend to take traditional routes. Kevin Bacon tried his hand at blues-rock, Johnny Depp and Keanu Reeves took on alternative, and even Russell Crowe played in a pub rock band. But Crispin Glover took a much different approach to making music. Sounding like a cross between King Missile and circus music, The Big Problem is one crazy slab of sound. Glover's voice (which has an thin, endearing tremble) serves as the narrator to the world of nonsense he's documented on this album. Occasionally he takes the listener by surprise with a melody. Both the hypnotic "The New Clean Song" and the soothing "Never Say Never to Always" are actually pretty good songs hidden among the madness. But mostly he rants and raves in a stream-of-conscious manner over the genre-hopping music. Most of the time this works in his favor; in fact, his Residents-esque cover of "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'" is a nervy delight. The original songs, like the hilarious "Clowny Clown Clown," can be equally entertaining. But sometimes he runs headfirst into his own limitations, like on his disturbing attempt at rap, "Auto Manipulator," a harsh tribute to masturbation that lacks any subtlety at all. A good portion of the material is taken from his books of poetry, which are definitely crazy but not always engaging. But Glover is a very original entertainer, making his musical mark with this weird collection of songs. Fans of edgy, bizarre music will probably enjoy this one immensely.

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