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Sparks - Hippopotamus CD (album) cover

HIPPOPOTAMUS

Sparks

 

Crossover Prog

3.85 | 45 ratings

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omphaloskepsis
5 stars 90/100 Wow! Hippopotamus is my favorite Sparks album ever! Blindsided by Sparks' contagious catchy cabaret, Hippopotamus sideswiped me. Zee Mael brothers have outdone themselves. Decades haven't dulled the knife sharp sheen off the Mael's, instead Father Time honed, polished and focused the Mael Brother's song craft skills.

Top shelf, eclectic, humorous lyrics abound, Russell Mael waxes poetic on advantages of the ever popular go-to "Missionary Position" and his Spartan "Scandinavian" furniture collection. The sarcastic "Unaware" and "I Wish You Were Fun" poke fun at the fairer sex. You got to grin at Russell warbling, " So Tell Me Mrs. Lincoln Aside From That, How Was The Play?" Literary allusions and history lessons like Macbeth and Edith Piaf literally litter the hysterical lyrical landscape of Hippopotamus.

" Russell Mael, myself and my husband sing along and share knowing smiles listening to Sparks' wit, coupled with resplendent, gorgeous piano riffing of Ron Mael. Unlike other older rock vocalists, Russell's vocals are clean and operatic as ever. His voice is extremely unusual yet catchy. Somehow Sparks break new ground while staying seductively melodic. The Maels share a P.O. box on Memory Lane. Every song is memorable.

Ironically, I found title track Hippopotamus the weakest song, still you got to salute Ron and Russell for rhyming abacus, Hieronymus Bosch , anonymous, and Titus Andronicus with Hippopotamus instead of falling into the cliché "Rhinoceros rhyme trap"!

Hippopotamus, though an acquired taste, puts the POP back in Hippopotamus and equals or supasses Sparks 70's classics "Kimono my House" and "Propaganda". For fans of superior song craft, marvelous piano runs, operatic Germanic vocals, Beardfish and Zappa lyrical satire!

omphaloskepsis | 5/5 |

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