Thursday, December 4, 2008

Shame-Based Man

Bruce McCullough
Released in 1995 by Atlantic Records and WEA International

You may remember Bruce McCullough as the short, lovable guy from the Kids in the Hall who would occasionally up a cabbage on his head. In 1995, shortly after the end of the Kids in The Hall he released a solo comedy album called Shame Based-Man.

It contains mostly spoken word and musical numbers, a few of which appeared on the Kids in the Hall, such as the "Daves I Know" song (which is a song about Daves he knows) and a speech about America (which is a place where a young man has to ask himself which does he love more - his girlfriend or his car) and a song about being a Doors fan. The album contains many more original bits though, such as a pleasant conversation between a stalker and the woman he's stalking, a brilliant song about being unhappy (where Death of a Salesman is his bible) and a lot more, such as a commentary about the vigil he witnessed for Kurt Cobain in Seattle, and a song about being fat.

I guess the brilliance of this album comes in the writing. Bruce McCullough is arguably the best writer of the Kids in the Hall, and it shows here. I think what is best about his writing is that it's funny not because he is writing quick one-liners or "clever" jokes, it is because he captures reality so well and skewers it so effectively.

For example, in the track "He Said, She Said" it shows the conversation between a man and a woman in a relationship with the woman saying things like "I love you baby, I love everything about you, I even love your handwriting. You know what I mean?" with the man responding "Yeah."

The woman then saying, "I love you baby, just sometimes I'm not sure, sometimes I wish there was more."

The man replies "Sure."

I should point out that because of this subtlety, this dry wit, this probably isn't the album for those who like a quick series of jokes and laughter without thinking. If you like that sort of humor then you probably aren't reading this, too busy laughing at your John Pinette album and making me wish you would die. For the rest of you, especially those who enjoyed the Kids in the Hall, this is the album for you.

It should be noted that this album is as funny as it is out of print. This album has been out of print for a while, but still obtainable for a reasonable price.

Back cover of my particular beat-up copy:

Booklet cover. Notice the feet.
The disc itself:

The outer portion of the inside booklet:The inner portion of the inside booklet. I apologize for the poor stitch-together. It was the best I could do considering how long this is.

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