- reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2004 3 Mar
- VeggieTales Theme Song – Rebecca St. James
- I Love My Lips – Stevenson
- Promised Land – Sanctus Real
- In the Belly of the Whale – Newsboys
- The Water Buffalo Song – Superchic[k]
- I'm So Blue – Paul Colman
- The Hairbrush Song – Audio Adrenaline
- The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything – Relient K
- I Can Be Your Friend – The O.C. Supertones
- His Cheeseburger – Tait
- Stand – Skillet
Ten years ago, an album called
Most will agree that the music of VeggieTales is brilliant, thanks to Big Idea's musical genius Kurt Heinecke. He has a keen sense of classical, opera, Broadway, and pop standards, allowing him to match music to the comedic slapstick and melodrama on the screen. Wit is essential, not just in lyrics, but also in selecting genre, arrangement, writing the melody, and the comedic acting of the voices. Whether you're watching or listening, you're always in on the joke, with a musical elbow to the ribs if things ever come close to sounding serious.
That's why most of
Same with Audio Adrenaline's straight-faced rendering of "The Hairbrush Song," which was originally a wonderful parody of Gilbert & Sullivan on VeggieTales. They've used this cover frequently in concert, but am I the only one who finds it plodding and lifeless? Superchic[k]'s "Water Buffalo Song" is not nearly as much fun as you'd hope, offering a headache-inducing example of repetition, and Skillet's version of "Stand" is merely loud.
Tait's performance of "His Cheeseburger" fares better, though the melodrama feels forced. A cover of "I Love My Lips" by Stevenson (Steven Curtis Chapman and his two sons, get it?) is cute because of Chapman Sr.'s cameo, but it's basic garage rock with canned humor. The same is true of Sanctus Real's little rendition of "Promised Land." Paul Colman does the best job of getting into the spirit of things with his crazy cover of "I'm So Blue"—he sounds like he's auditioning as a new character.
The best tracks are those originally used in the cartoons or as promo tie-ins, performed by bands with a gift for goofiness. It's not surprising that Relient K has a blast performing a spirited rendition of "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything," or that The Supertones do simple ska-pop justice to "I Can Be Your Friend," with both bands throwing in silly voices aplenty. Then there's "In the Belly of the Whale" from the Jonah film, performed by the Newsboys and a worthy successor to their hit "Breakfast." It's co-written by Steve Taylor, whose legendary lyrical wit is perfect here: "Woke up this morning kinda blue/Thinking through that age-old question: 'How to exit a whale's digestion?'/It might behoove me to be heaved/Head out like a human comet/(Hmmm … I wonder what rhymes with comet.)" Fans should also note that Taylor delivers the rap during the song's bridge.
Is the album worth your money? Generally not, but it is what it is. The album's a little light, and it's surprising that Nicole C. Mullen's "Theme from Larry Boy" wasn't included. While