All it takes is 3 chords and a dream!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

CD Review: Tally Hall - Marvin's Marvelous Mechanical Museum

Tally Hall – Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum
2005 Quack Records/2008 Atlantic Records

One of the greatest acts in the history of popular music managed to be witty, musically challenging, and mix different styles/sounds that were then popular in new ways you might not have thought of before. Despite not putting out a new record in nearly 40 years, they continue to outsell younger acts with their style, panache, and straight-forward love of music. It’s the spirit of their music that has made them nearly immortal, and the generations in between have longed for a successor to their spirit. I’m speaking, of course, of none other than The Beatles.

Today I introduce you to the torchbearer of their legacy, Tally Hall. On Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum, Tally Hall offer up a smorgasbord of sounds and styles that are sure to please your musical palate. Drawing from styles including rock, rap, pop and calypso, Tally Hall carry the day with the most original and dynamic recording I’ve heard this decade.

Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum is a masterpiece. Thousands of bands would kill to write/record an album like this once in their career. Tally Hall has struck gold on the first try. The album opens with Good Day, and provides a clear picture of what is to come. The song does not adhere to traditional rock song structure, bridging at a moment’s notice. There are hints of Queen here, but don’t get caught up in that comparison. The sounds here draw from many influences, but have catalyzed as something that only be called Tally Hall’s sound.

Greener is one of the most upbeat angst-filled relationship songs you’ll ever hear, and is a true aural treat. Welcome To Tally Hall utilizes a rap, harmonies, Motown horns and Rheostatics-like choruses to introduce the band to the world. This might be one of the most challenging songs on the album, and perhaps the most fun to listen to. Also notable is The Whole World And You, which is featured in the new Crayola 3-D chalk television commercial.

I am not going to cover every song, and I would list highlights but there would have to be valleys in order to contrast them. Just for giggles, check out Be Born, with a hint of Celtic/bluegrass influence, Banana Man with it’s calypso lilt, or the Mary-Kate and Ashley Olson inspired Two Wuv.

Look, albums like this do not come along very often. Once or twice a generation a band will release a recording like this. At worst, Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum should be remembered as one of the great rock albums of the decade. In fact, it might be the best thing to come out of pop music since Sgt. Pepper taught his band to play. Tally Hall is here to stay.

Rating: 5 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about Tally Hall at You can purchase Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum at most major music retailers.

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