The Credibility Gap

The Bronze Age of Radio

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Originally released on Waterhouse in 1977, The Bronze Age of Radio highlighted the Credibility Gap's best bits through that medium. Similar to National Lampoon and Firesign Theatre, the Credibility Gap -- Harry Shearer, David L. Lander, Michael McKean, and Richard Beebe -- spent most of the early to mid-'70s working on radio. Unlike Firesign's radio program, there was no ad-libbing; the Credibility Gap didn't improvise. The material was well rehearsed, which makes the rapid-fire dialogue, especially perfected by Shearer, move the pace along but doesn't compensate for the lack of humor. Like the Lampoon radio show, which was also scripted, it is of the era; some of these bits weren't meant to be heard out of context. Among the 11 cuts are a rock & roll takeoff of the famous Abbott & Costello routine "Who's on First," several fake radio ads based on ethnic stereotypes ("Spots"), obvious swipes at Nixon-era government ("Tricia's Honeymoon," "The L.B.J. Tape," "Senator Kennedy's Next Speech"), juvenile sexual innuendo posing as highbrow ("I, Othello"), and painfully long bits that go nowhere ("The Last 'Big Picture'," "The World's Greatest Man Pageant"). The 2007 reissue of The Bronze Age of Radio will appeal to those who remember these bits the first time around, but most will not be amused.

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