Since Tally Hall’s latest album has recently been re-released nationally, it’s time to take a second look at the same songs they’ve been recycling for the last four years, because something needs to be done. Badly.
To be fair, Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum isn’t completely worthless. For example, it would make a decent coaster or maybe even a good doorstop. But that’s about the extent of its logical uses. The CD is such an atrocious attempt at music that at its best could be used to pick up confused little boys and at it’s worst is patronizing and racially insensitive.
Actually, MMMM is quite an accomplishment. It must be pretty hard to create an album where every single member contributes songs devoid of any positive musical qualities. Wolf Eyes have been trying to assault listeners aurally with grating noise at unbelievable volumes for years now, but even they haven’t been able to give listeners headaches the same way Tally Hall can.
But headaches aren’t the only reaction this garbage inspires. If you can make it past the first two tracks, “Welcome to Tally Hall” is the nadir of their unparalleled tastelessness. The faux raps almost seem as if they can’t possibly be intended seriously, but since they are, Tally Hall might be Pat Buchanan’s new favorite band. The song wears its racist hood subtly, but patronizing lyrics like “who’s to blame / the automated playas / I proclaim” and “no, turn it up more / So the grey in the back sipping ‘gnac can hear / He’s knocking down the shots like Bill Lambeer (sic)” are an affront toward anyone who actually takes hip hop seriously. Really, you’re telling me you would say “”Jiggle your bodiggle all over the place” or “we’re rapping with robo-electronic ebonics” to a black person’s face? While wearing one of those goofy-ass ties? Then why put it on your album? It’s not “cute” – it’s downright offensive.
That’s why it’s not so surprising that Tally Hall’s proudest moment was having a song featured on “The O.C.” – a show that, by the way, has never had a black character ever.
Everybody (under the age of 15) seems to think that Tally Hall is heading to bigger places (such as the Mall of America) but their (really stupid) shtick of wearing ties and sounding like a glorified Backstreet Boys wears thin upon (less than) a single listen.
Let me share a personal anecdote. This summer I was working a booth at Top of The Park, an annual festival aimed at families and teens that features live acts every night. Next to Shawn Mullins, Tally Hall’s performance was one of the most highly anticipated of the summer. As one very excited young fan approached the booth, I asked her “So who’s your favorite band member?” to which she replied “The one with the red tie.” So, naturally, I asked her “And why is that?” to which she replied “he’s the cutest.” So I said “oh, I can’t see the stage from here, what instrument does he play?” Her response was a blank stare and an “uh, I dunno.” Yep, those are Tally Hall’s biggest fans.
For anyone with any respect for music, the English language or race in America it’s clear that this band is one of the worst acts that is somehow, unfathomably, getting attention from purveyors of fine taste like MTV or Fox. To be clear, I’m not blaming the fans of Tally Hall; they have yet to form a social consciousness, or pubes, so they aren’t to blame for the band’s inexplicable rise. No one is to blame, really; Marvin’s Marvelous Mechanical Museum is more like a natural disaster than a terrorist attack. Soon we’ll all recover and return to rebuild once those little rascals responsible for Tally Hall’s hype get to high school. At that point Tally Hall will hopefully be long forgotten, just dollar-bin fodder for record stores in Hell.