Wesley Willis

Fabian Road Warrior

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For a short time in music history, Wesley Willis became famous for being the first functioning schizophrenic to carry on a music career. He rambled on aimlessly in interviews and head-butted fans at concerts. American Records honcho Rick Rubin even wrangled Willis into recording an album for his label. But this is a one-joke affair, as every Willis song follows the exact same pattern. They all have the exact same keyboard part (slowed down or sped up to change pitch) with Willis spouting nonsense over each track. Each song even uses sound effects in place of a guitar solo. Most of the lyrics revolve around beating up a celebrity, fawning over a rock band, or plugging his favorite corporations. Occasionally Willis throws in comments about his mental condition, which tend to be sad bursts of reality between all the nonsense. But mostly this is a very repetitive, strange album. What makes it even more bizarre is the moral question that comes with an album like this: Does this album mean to make fun of a schizophrenic or showcase his songwriting skills? Either way, it is only good for a few laughs but gets dull after a few listens. Fans of the bizarre will probably enjoy this; otherwise, this is not something that translates to fans of most other forms of music.

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