Sunday, April 22, 2012

"Genius is pain!"

Yesterday, I defended John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band from the charge of being akin to "the world's most privileged man having a tantrum." I hope I didn't give the impression that I think the album is above criticism or that John's abrasive, self-serious manner on it (or elsewhere, for that matter) doesn't present some challenges. In fact, I agree with the Pitchfork reviewer's implied view that JL/POB was worthy of a spoof and that National Lampoon's "Magical Misery Tour" utterly nailed it. Listen for yourself below. (Caution: It's NSFW.) The vocal is a serviceable Lennon impersonation, but the testy piano line fits the bill quite well, and the lyrics work expertly because they were in fact pilfered from John's famously frank 1970 interview with Rolling Stone, which put on full display his unwieldy, contradictory self. Yes, John could be a monstrous asshole.

Here's "Magical Misery Tour." See if you can detect, in the melody, echoes of "I'm Losing You," a song of John's that came out a decade later.

(If the video is removed, go here.)

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