Underdog Victorious [Explicit Lyrics]

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
It's been four years between studio albums for Jill Sobule, so you'd imagine the singer-songwriter would be positively bursting with quirks, strangeness, and charm -- an expectation that's readily met on this typically endearing disc. Underdog Victorious has more than its share of breezy moments -- like the summery stoner anthem "Cinnamon Park," which borrows the central riff from Chicago's "Saturday in the Park" to good effect -- but Sobule's really in her element when she spins more intricate tales. Those that inhabit the dark side, such as the prostitute's lament "Tel Aviv," tend to be equally stark in terms of sonics. When the mood lightens, as on "Joey" -- a ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
It's been four years between studio albums for Jill Sobule, so you'd imagine the singer-songwriter would be positively bursting with quirks, strangeness, and charm -- an expectation that's readily met on this typically endearing disc. Underdog Victorious has more than its share of breezy moments -- like the summery stoner anthem "Cinnamon Park," which borrows the central riff from Chicago's "Saturday in the Park" to good effect -- but Sobule's really in her element when she spins more intricate tales. Those that inhabit the dark side, such as the prostitute's lament "Tel Aviv," tend to be equally stark in terms of sonics. When the mood lightens, as on "Joey" -- a tribute of sorts to '60s icon Joey Heatherton -- so do Sobule's melodic instincts. That giddiness also pops up on the hidden track, "Saw a Cop," which picks up more or less where "I Kissed a Girl" left off. Sobule, who declared herself bisexual some years back, ending speculation about that latter song, delves into the topic in a more serious manner as well, decrying the "ex-gay" movement on the anthemic "Under the Disco Ball." Underdog Victorious offers plenty to chew on but packs enough sweet and creamy centers to make that a pleasant task.
All Music Guide - James Christopher Monger
Singer/songwriter Jill Sobule's quirky tales of love, loss, and human frivolity would seem precious and cloying in the hands of a lesser interpreter. Underdog Victorious, her first release of all-new material since 2000's Pink Pearl -- she put out a retrospective the following year -- features all of the sarcasm, wit, keen observation, and big-sister charm that fans have come to expect from the tenacious New Yorker. Sobule inhabits each of her characters with an equal amount of empathy and motherly whimsy, whether it be Third World prostitutes "Tel Aviv", "Strawberry Gloss"-wearing teen princesses, or closeted boys wilting beneath the Bible-clenched fists of intolerant fathers "Under the Disco Ball" -- the latter, with its refrain of "they have a scheme/they have a plan/to take the children of our land/turn them into stylists and women who play golf," is like 1995's "I Kissed a Girl"'s younger sibling. Sobule is a true pop aficionado, and her melodies have never suffered from the run-of-the-mill, singer/songwriter trappings of the genre, so when she builds an entire song off of the piano riff from Chicago's "Saturday in the Park" -- the ludicrously catchy first single, "Cinnamon Park" -- it never feels calculated. The title track is the real gem here; with its Mott the Hoople-like chorus and Mick Ronson-era Bowie guitar lick, it captures all of the sunshine, self-deprecation, and joy of simply being allowed to be a musician with a big burning heart. Sobule's voice lacks the sometimes icy pretension of oft-compared, hip contemporaries like Aimee Mann. In fact, a better comparison would be the perpetually underrated Cyndi Lauper, another mischievous pixie whose "New Yahk" accent and spirited irreverence often overshadowed her more somber and challenging offerings. It's this homegrown accessibility that provides much of the aptly titled Underdog Victorious' engaging warmth, and besides, it's hard not to root for an artist who closes her record with a surprisingly heartfelt and genuine ode to misery without sounding the least bit whiny.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/2/2011
  • Label: Imports
  • EAN: 5038622110420
  • Catalog Number: 948188
  • Sales rank: 155,215

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Freshman (2:21)
  2. 2 Jetpack (3:03)
  3. 3 Cinnamon Park (3:23)
  4. 4 Tender Love (2:46)
  5. 5 Underdog Victorious (3:31)
  6. 6 Under the Disco Ball (1:31)
  7. 7 The Last Line (3:56)
  8. 8 Tel Aviv (3:32)
  9. 9 Joey (3:55)
  10. 10 Nothing Natural (2:28)
  11. 11 Angel/Asshole (2:59)
  12. 12 Strawberry Gloss (3:45)
  13. 13 Thank Misery (2:16)
  14. 14 [Untitled Track] (2:31)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Jill Sobule Primary Artist, Organ, Guitar, Drums, Moog Synthesizer, Omnichord, Sounds, Casio
Patrick Buchanon Guitar
Dennis Diken Drums
Jim Hoke Clarinet, Flute
Brad Jones Organ, Bass, Piano, Rhythm Guitar, Electric Piano
Al Perkins Pedal Steel Guitar
Michael Rhodes Bass
Neal Rosengarden Trumpet, Classical Guitar
Chris Carmichael Violin, Viola
Ross Rice Piano
David Henry Cello
Will Kimbrough Slide Guitar
Robin Eaton Bass, Harmonica, Background Vocals
Mickey Grimm Percussion, Drums
Rob Burger Piano, Casio
Bill DeMain Electric Piano, Background Vocals
Marykate O'Neil Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Chris Woods Engineer
Jill Sobule Composer, Sound Effects
Robert Lamm Composer
Jim DeMain Mastering
Brad Jones Producer
Roger Moutenot Producer
Griffin Norman Cover Photo
Robin Eaton Composer, Producer
Susan McEowen Art Direction
Bill DeMain Composer
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