REVIEW: The Lonely Island – Turtleneck & Chain

the-lonely-island-turtleneck-and-chain

Aritst: The Lonely Island
Album: Turtleneck & Chain
Genre: Comedy/Hip Hop
Label: Universal

Anyone that follows UTG should recognize my love for comedy releases. Being from the middle of nowhere, much of my comedic knowledge has been translated through album releases. From Weird Al to George Carlin, I’ve spent many years being entertained by humor on wax. However, I recently found myself in the predicament that rarely occurs – a comedic album that lacks humor. I had heard for years such titles existed, I just hoped no one I admired would ever release one.

Do you remember the first time you heard “I’m On A Boat”? Probably not. However, I am willing to bet you remember, however hazily, at least one of the thousands of times you’ve head it since then. Unlike most comedy records, The Lonely Island’s Incredibad carried such praise and hype that it crossed into the mainstream and suddenly, musical comedy become top 40 fodder. The album, thanks heavily to the popularity of “Boat,” went on to win the guys in Lonely Island tons of comedic honors and awards, leaving many to wonder what the trio would do next. The answer, it appears, was to do much of the same, only this time with half the creativity.

If you can make me laugh, that’s one thing, but if you can make everyone I know laugh, that’s another altogether. The Lonely Island obviously fall into the latter category and as such, gave me huge hopes for their new album, Turtleneck & Chain. However, I’m here to let everyone know the curtain has fallen and this once unbelievably creative trio have gone from genius to seemingly not trying in the slightest. Aside from the songs that already had the SNL treatment (notably “I Just Had Sex,” “The Creep,” and “Mother Lover”), few, if any, come across as funny. Comedic, yes, but nothing about them is actually funny. Even when the group recruits music greats like Snoop Dogg or Michael Bolton, there is simply no escaping how obvious and forced each track feels. There’s no surprise left, just well-worn lyrical territory and club ready beats.

I wanted to love The Lonely Island’s Turtleneck & Chain, but ended up feeling myself trying to force emotion ALMOST as hard as they were trying to force comedy. What started out as a unique comedy project has become nothing more than dick and fart jokes set to amazingly well produced beats. While that may be enough for some, I’ve come to expect much more from this trio and feel you as fans should too. Buy the singles on iTunes and see some live standup instead. I guarantee you’ll have more fun and, most importantly, actually laugh.

Score: 4/10
Review written by: James Shotwell

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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  • Frankiev1979

    I think it’s a really good album. Agree to disagree, right buddy? Ha ha. But seriously, it sounds like you were in a bad mood or something, cause the album is GREAT!

  • Frodo 69

    Here’s my review of James from Under The Gun Reviews:

    “James is kind of a dick.”

  • Lance

    I think it was mainly disappointment that resulted in the low score. You really do expect more after the success of the first, and this follow up is… underwhelming at times. Just my two cents.

  • Daniel

    James, I agree completely. Even back in their first SNL skits, it was obvious that they were given to drawing the joke out too long. This album is the unfortunate extension of that habit. Maybe they’ll come back with a sharper album in another two years, but I still think they were best when they were talking about how badly they wanted to watch The Chronicles of Narnia movie.

  • Lame

    I was pretty much on the same page, any of the songs that had all ready been released as a video on SNL Digital side was good, but then again I had all ready watched the video 5 times, so there wasn’t any thrill in listening to it in the car, all the skits are just fucking annoying, and the new songs might have a good line or two in it, but not much else./ Really disapointed.

  • Hayes650

    I really dug this album. I actually thought it was better than the 1st one. The music is really good sounding which might be “throwing” you, but the jokes are still top notch “retarded” which is even more impressive for how icy it sounds. Just my incredibly on point opinion!