Electric Six

I Shall Exterminate Everything Around Me That Restricts Me from Being the Master

  • AllMusic Rating
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

As over the top as ever, Electric Six continues to satirically embrace the excess of sex, drugs, rock & roll -- and excess itself -- on I Shall Exterminate Everything Around Me That Restricts Me from Being the Master. Lyrics are fueled by an annoyance with present-day society (most notably: computers, fast food, television personalities, politicians, and Lenny Kravitz), but these themes are barely noticeable when paired with the throbbing dance beats and the campy Jack Black-ish mannerisms of Dick Valentine, who maintains the party atmosphere throughout. A high-concept album isn't necessarily what E6's fan base is looking to hear -- they want to have fun -- and it's nice to see that Valentine hasn't lost his acute sense of bombast. The macho swagger is still an important highlight of his shtick, and he continues to invent ludicrous catch phrases like "put a little mustard on it" and bellow them with a completely straight face over a kick drum and a noodling clarinet line. He questions whether his vocals were too sexy in "Dance Pattern," he hits the bottle with Ronald McDonald in "Down at McDonnellzz," and he breaks out his rhyming dictionary on "Rip It," with the absurd closing line, "Put me in motion/Drink the potion/Use the lotion/Drain the ocean/Cause commotion/Fake devotion/Entertain a notion/Be Nova Scotian." Sharing a lot of stylistic similarities with Switzerland (Electric Six's former album, not the country), this record could easily be labeled a counterpart to their last one. Songs are considerably darker and more experimental than the disco-influenced singles on their early releases, but even though the group has broadened their range, the hooks are still abundant. "When I Get to the Green Building" is a radio-friendly ballad in the vein of U2 and the Eels, and "Lucifer Airlines" an electro-jam that mirrors the loose swagger of Prince's "Erotic City." These are some solid moments, and the genre-spanning variety keeps the album interesting, but the group's best songs are always the energetic dance rockers that made them popular. There are enough innovative ideas on this record that it feels fresh, but it never strays too far from the Electric Six formula, making for an entertaining romp, as usual.

blue highlight denotes track pick