Mitch Friedman “Sing Sing”

Somewhere between They Might Be Giants, Allan Sherman and XTC lies the world of Mitch Friedman. After he’s shown us his Game Show Teeth a few years ago, he is now sent to Sing Sing (a prison for the musically weird I guess).

Opening with a muppets like chorus of prisoners singing “Me Not Right,” it leads to the bouncy and quirky “Previously Unreleased.” Mitch’s vocal shifts make him an ever changing chameleon – like a Robin Williams routine, you never know which “voice” will pop up in the chorus. While some will find it endearing, others may hear it as over used novelty. In any case the music is interesting enough, “Ice Me Nice” is an over-the-top reaction to global warming and “Hazy Recollection” is a nicely done story of criminal arrogance. A faux Bond theme with Jude Cown “The Spy” is full of so many cliches I was waiting for a punchline (that never arrived).

Eventually the goofiness recedes and straight catchy pop shows up with “Spring (Is Waiting For A Chance To) Spring” and impressive “The Last Nice Day” with its shifting styles from acoustic to heavy rock. Most entertaining is “Tribute Band” an enjoyable tune about a musician “in a tribute band to myself.” Add to this special musical guest stars Dave Gregory (XTC), R. Stevie Moore, Adam Elk (The Mommyheads), Andrea Perry, Lane Steinberg (The Wind), Jude Cowan, Indigo Street (Shy Hunters), and Daryl Bean. Overall a very entertaining listen.

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