AU's Student-Run Internet-Only Radio


AU's Student-Run Internet-Only Radio


AU's Student-Run Internet-Only Radio


Kyle Gordon is Great! No, Really!

The album art for Kyle Gordons album Kyle Gordon is Great.
The album art for Kyle Gordon’s album “Kyle Gordon is Great.”

To me, the best music is music with a point of view where there is a deliberate perspective that you can see the artist crafted the song from. Comedic music often has this strong point of view, as the artist must strike a delicate balance between making music that still sounds good while having lyrics packed with referential jokes relevant to the subject matter. Comedian and musician Kyle Gordon’s debut album “Kyle Gordon is Great” is able to strike this perfect balance, providing witty commentary on music itself while effortlessly matching the iconic stylings of the chosen genres. “Kyle Gordon is Great” is a masterclass in paying homage to a love of music while being knowledgeable enough about it to deconstruct and poke a little fun.

One of my personal favorites from the album, and what made Gordon go viral, is “Planet of the Bass,” a parody of ‘90s Eurodance. Performed by Gordon as DJ Crazy Times (one of his many pseudonyms on the album) and with vocals provided by Chrissi Poland (as Ms. Biljana Electronica), “Planet of the Bass” is as catchy as it is wildly smart. Crafted as if you are listening to a genuine DJ playing his set in a Bratislavan club and performed entirely in broken English, Gordon is able to transport you right back to 1997 like it was yesterday.

Lines like “When the rhythm is glad / There is nothing to be sad” and “Life, it never die / Women are my favorite guy / Sex, I’m wanting more / Tell the world, ‘Stop the war’” truly immerse you in the world of the music. Even the way that the three short snippets leading up to the music video release featured three completely different actresses playing Ms. Biljana Electronica (with none of which even being the vocalist for the track) plays into the real trope of ‘90s Eurodance groups replacing their female leads. These deep cuts of the music industry come from a place of true brilliance, and they carry through to the albums other tracks as well.

Likely my favorite song from the album, the third single “Girls Are The Best” smashes any doubt that Gordon (performing this time as pseudonym Tanya McCabe) is a one-hit-wonder. Parodying 2000s girlboss country music, I found myself listening to this one again and again. The overtly patriotic and religious exclamations, the violent outburst at the end yelling at the men in the crowd, the deliberate but inconsistent prudishness with swearing, and the surface-level social justice platitudes really drive this song home as one of the standouts from the album. It is so incredibly smart and wickedly funny while simultaneously sounding musically like it could’ve been sitting on a CD rack right next to Reba, Carrie, or Shania.

Every time I listen to the song, the lines “A girl can be a mother or defend our freedom overseas / Let’s give it up for our sisters in Iraq” and “You diss American women? Well, here’s my boot / Right up Bin Laden’s ass” stick so clearly in my mind for just how absurd, yet absurdly funny, they are. Although “Planet of the Bass” may be the most viral, I feel as though “Girls Are The Best” is the apex of the album with its truly cutting lyrics and a masterful sonic parody of country music to boot (no pun intended).

Another standout from the album is the pop-punk/emo parody “My Life (Is The Worst Life Ever)” under the pseudonym band My Wounded Courtship. Sung from the perspective of a high schooler who the other kids just don’t understand, the song is so clever in its structure. It ping-pongs between the hyperdramatic and dismal emo lyrics and heavy rock backing to short spoken word monologues about what his life actually is: being bullied by the basketball team and how nobody takes his rolly backpack seriously.

I truly feel as though this ties into one of the biggest strengths of the album being the characters he portrays via his pseudonyms. Gordon is a comedian at his core, and from DJ Crazy Times to Tanya McCabe to My Wounded Courtship he uses his talents as an actor and comedian to craft these characters that he performs each of the songs from. The music feels so genuine and accurate to its subject matter because Gordon is able to immerse himself into these tailored character roles as an actor would for a TV show or film. He isn’t just singing a parody song, but performing it as a character of that time would perform it, and this elevates the album to a level I have rarely heard even in other comedy music. 

As for the other songs from the album, they are all phenomenal and so unique. Sleazy and passionate ‘60s Bossa Nova parody “Ugliest Girl on the Beach” and drug and crime-filled (yet unusually homoerotic) western outlaw parody “Wanderin’” are both extremely well-crafted. Adult contemporary parody “I Love My Boyfriend,” where the singer gradually describes her boyfriend’s stature from human sized to monstrous behemoth compared to her ever-petite size, is unexpectedly hysterical and another standout.

Even the interludes between each song are hilariously clever. The album, structured to resemble a person flipping through radio channels and having a parody of a radio intro for each genre, was a stroke of pure genius. As a college radio DJ myself, “Radio Station #7: College Radio” genuinely left me in tears from laughing so hard. The breathiness in the mic, not knowing how to work the radio equipment, and saying “um” ten times on the very brief fifty second track solidifies this as one of my favorite parts of the album and a personal deep cut to the soul.

“Kyle Gordon is Great” is one of the funniest and most well-crafted albums I have heard in a long time. Truly like nothing I have ever heard before, I will continue to play this album on repeat to myself and to anyone I can convince to listen to it. I look forward to the day when Gordon releases “Kyle Gordon is Greater” and I have another fresh batch of songs to laugh, cry and positively rock out to.

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    Stephanie StLaurentApr 3, 2024 at 11:59 am