Spike Jones' free-for-all approach, satirizing and parodying everything in sight, came into its own during World War II, a time when his humor provided needed relief for troops abroad and those waiting at home. Not Your Standard Spike Jones Collection brings together three discs (over three hours of music) of material from radio transcriptions recorded during the war. It isn't surprising, then, that a number of Jones' songs poke fun at the enemy, nor that his first gold record was "Der Fuehrer's Face." While Carl Grayson's delivery, complete with a bad German accent, is funny enough, Jones' band's musical commentary provides the perfect backdrop. Of course, certain songs like "You're a Sap Mister Jap" will seem offensive today, but these transcriptions serve as a historical document as much as entertainment. There are also great versions of classics like "Sheik of Araby" and "That Old Black Magic," with Jones and his musical partners turning the most romantic song inside out. Bells, whistles, trombones, and banjos raise a ruckus, reminding one of a New Orleans jazz band that refuses to take its work seriously. Listeners will also not want to miss such oddities as "Boogie Woogie Cowboy" and "City Slicker Polka." The 79 selections on Not Your Standard Spike Jones Collection provide a welcome overview of the bandleader's work from the 1940s and a nice snapshot of the era.
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AllMusic Review by Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2
Track Listing - Disc 3