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Mandatory Fun

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - David Jeffries
Already accepted as a bona fide talent in the world of parody -- his musicianship, comedic timing, his pop-culture reference awareness, and his great wordplay are all well-documented -- the only thing that matters when it comes to "Weird Al" Yankovic albums is how inspired the king of novelty songs sounds on any given LP. On his 14th studio album, Mandatory Fun, the inspiration meter goes well into the red, something heard instantly as Iggy Azalea's electro-rap "Fancy" does a complete 180 thematically on the opening "Handy," the song now heading toward the local home improvement store where the craftsmen vogue in their orange vests and blow sweet come-ons like "I'll ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - David Jeffries
Already accepted as a bona fide talent in the world of parody -- his musicianship, comedic timing, his pop-culture reference awareness, and his great wordplay are all well-documented -- the only thing that matters when it comes to "Weird Al" Yankovic albums is how inspired the king of novelty songs sounds on any given LP. On his 14th studio album, Mandatory Fun, the inspiration meter goes well into the red, something heard instantly as Iggy Azalea's electro-rap "Fancy" does a complete 180 thematically on the opening "Handy," the song now heading toward the local home improvement store where the craftsmen vogue in their orange vests and blow sweet come-ons like "I'll bring you up to code" and "My socket wrenches are second to none." Pharrell's "Happy" becomes "Tacky" and Al's amazing ability to follow an everyday poke ("Wear my Ed Hardy shirt with fluorescent orange pants") with something brainy and reserved ("Got my new résumé, it's printed in Comic Sans") surprises once more, but for end-to-end "wows," it's his brilliant redo of Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines," now the smug and twerking "Word Crimes," which gives copy editors, English professors, and grammar nerds a reason to hit the dancefloor ("And listen up when I tell you this/I hope you never use quotation marks for emphasis!"). Hardcore and hilarious musical moments start to happen when Imagine Dragons' "Radioactive" becomes "Inactive," a singalong anthem for the sluggish and the slovenly ("Near comatose, no exercise/Don't tag my toe, I'm still alive") with a dubstep-rock bassline that sounds like Galactus burping. Better still is the every-Al-album pop-polka medley, this time called "Now That's What I Call Polka!" which polkas-up Daft Punk ("Get Lucky"), PSY ("Gangnam Style"), and Miley Cyrus ("Wrecking Ball"), and with more Spike Jones-styled sound effects than usual. As for the originals this time out, the "you suck!"-minded "Sports Song" will be unavoidable under Friday night lights once a teen gets hold of it, while the ranting and wonderfully weird "First World Problems" sounds more like the Pixies than anything the Pixies did in 2014. Wonders never cease on Mandatory Fun, and neither do the laughs.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/15/2014
  • Label: Rca
  • UPC: 888430937529
  • Catalog Number: 4309375
  • Sales rank: 263

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Handy (2:56)
  2. 2 Lame Claim to Fame (3:45)
  3. 3 Foil (2:22)
  4. 4 Sports Song (2:14)
  5. 5 Word Crimes (3:43)
  6. 6 My Own Eyes (3:40)
  7. 7 Now That's What I Call Polka! (4:05)
  8. 8 Mission Statement (4:28)
  9. 9 Inactive (2:56)
  10. 10 First World Problems (3:13)
  11. 11 Tacky (2:53)
  12. 12 Jackson Park Express (9:05)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
"Weird Al" Yankovic Primary Artist, Accordion, Keyboards, Vocals, Background Vocals
Monique Donnelly Background Vocals
Scottie Haskell Background Vocals
Steve Jay Bass, Keyboards
Joel Peskin Clarinet
Jim Self Tuba
Julia Waters Background Vocals
Lisa Popeil Background Vocals
Wayne Bergeron Trumpet
Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz Percussion, Drums
Amanda Palmer Vocals
Mike Uhler Cornet
James King Saxophone
Jim "Kimo" West Banjo, Guitar, Keyboards
Suzanne Yankovic screams
Maxine Waters Background Vocals
Mike Bolger Tuba
Technical Credits
Luiz Bonfá Composer
Lee Oskar Composer
Nile Rodgers Composer
Greg Errico Composer
Bernie Grundman Mastering
Steve Jay String Arrangements
Joe Little Composer
Maureen McDonald Composer
George Robertson Composer
John Ryan Composer
"Weird Al" Yankovic Arranger, Composer, Lyricist, Producer
Jon Turner Composer
Thomas Bangalter Composer
Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo Composer
Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz drum programming
Pharrell Williams Composer
Rafael Serrano Engineer
Dave Way Engineer
Jean Baptiste Composer
Sacha Skarbek Composer
Wayne Hector Composer
Robin Thicke Composer
Brian Warwick Engineer
Stephan Moccio Composer
Jay Levey Management
Julian Bunetta Composer
Arthur Richardson Composer
Jason Pebworth Composer
George Astasio Composer
Benny Grotto Vocal Engineer
Josh Ramsay Composer
Carly Rae Jepsen Composer
Meghan Foley Art Direction
Kesha Sebert Composer
Henry Walter Composer
Ross MacLean Composer
Josh Mosser Composer
Armando C. Perez Composer
Ed Drewett Composer
Jef Martens Composer
Stefan Gordy Composer
Skyler Gordy Composer
Lukasz Gottwald Composer
Keri Oskar Composer
Mark Foster Composer
Erin Beck Composer
Priscilla Renea Hamilton Composer
William Adams Composer
Daniel Wayne Sermon Composer
Daniel Coulter Reynolds Composer
Benjamin Arthur McKee Composer
Kurtis McKenzie Composer
Walter De Backer Composer
Tavish Crowe Composer
Clifford Harris Jr. Composer
Kenny Oliver Composer
Jamie Sanderson Composer
Ryan Lewis Composer
Ben Haggerty Composer
Charlotte Aitchison Composer
Amethyst Kelly Composer
Jai Sang Park Composer
Keon Hyung Yoo Composer
David Listenbee Composer
Breyan Stanley Isaac Composer
Alexander Lansang Illustrations
Ria Del Rosario Illustrations
Jonathan Shave Composer
Ella O'Connor Composer
Alexander Junior Grant Composer
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