Julie Brown

Trapped in the Body of a White Girl

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As the liner notes to the 2010 reissue of this album mention, Julie Brown was one of two major artists who can thank wacky radio host Dr. Demento for launching their recording career, the other being "Weird Al" Yankovic. Brown’s breakthrough novelty hit was “Cause I’m A Blonde,” which isn’t included on this debut album, but most of her other necessary cuts are, from the funny and funky title track to the too cute, Valley Girl-mocking “I Like ‘Em Big and Stupid.” The main attraction is most definitely the ‘60s-styled, girl group number “The Homecoming Queen’s Got a Gun” which hilariously updates the teen tragedy song for a post-gun control world. If it’s camp you crave, jump right to “Girl Fight Tonight!” which is ever so fierce with lyrics like “When you told him he looked like Rob Lowe/Well that was the last straw/So now I have to tell him/You wear a padded bra”. As far as the music, it’s totally ‘80s with thin synths, early samplers, and bright, cutesy melodies, all of which help the novelty numbers sound more fun, but there are a surprising handful of semi-serious songs here and unless you prefer the thin sound of the era, they’ll just seem dated. Fans of ‘80s pop will likely find them charming and might notice that Madonna’s 1989 hit “Cherish” sounds an awful lot like Brown’s 1987 cut “Shut Up and Kiss Me.” Giggle at the thought of the Material Girl being influenced by the Madonna-mocking comedienne Brown, then giggle harder at the plentiful highlights which are all awesome new wave goofiness, to the max.

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