Tater Totz

Mono Stereo

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Some might think one crazed Beatles demi-parody album from Redd Kross' Steve and Jeff McDonald would be enough, but happily the brothers and their crew of like-minded friends had other ideas. Thus this merry little blast of weirdness from 1989, featuring a hilarious Help!-inspired cover (only with four Yoko Onos striking the familiar poses) and another wiggy selection of songs, Fab Four-written and otherwise. Ono herself actually is the source of most of the covers this time around, with songs like "Sisters, o Sisters" and "Why?" taking turns, while Beatles cuts include "Rain," sung by the effervescent Shonen Knife, and a live Michael Quercio-sung "Tomorrow Never Knows." Quercio himself has never sounded quite so fey, with a hilarious intro claiming that "This is a song about control -- my control!," while what sounds like demented trombones play over the music. One of the odder choices is David Essex's "Rock On," which had been recently covered in a cheese-corp style by Michael Damian; Tater Totz do a rather better job, with Teasy Weasy Butler cranking the glam rock guitar. Various return guests from the first album appear, with Cherie Currie taking lead vocals on the opening number, a version of "Instant Karma" that actually sounds like more fun than the original. Jeff McDonald does a dead-on Lennon interpretation on "Strawberry Fields Forever," while he and Shonen Knife's Naoko Yamono do a full-on Lennon impersonation on "The Luck of the Irish." If there's a representatively off-kilter selection from this effort, it would have to be the Pat Smear-sung medley of Ono's "Who Has Seen the Rain?" and Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody." The lyrics from the former get sung over the music from the latter sans midsong a cappella overdub, making for a merry vision of Ono storming the stadiums circa 1976. A slew of unlisted bonus tracks concludes the CD, making it the version to seek out.

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