Rhythm & Views 

Ben Lee

Aussie Ben Lee has abandoned his trademark catchy guitar-pop songs to make an odd, quasi-concept album that irks more than it inspires.

The Rebirth of Venus intends to be a celebration of traditionally feminine qualities. I imagine that Lee considers Venus to be a thoughtful yet exuberant rallying call for the death of irony and cynicism, a sort of "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding" for 2009, but it's so clumsily handled that the reverse occurs: Out-of-date stereotypes and simpleminded political musings are exalted.

I could feel my usually generous heart wither when listening to the highly distasteful "I'm a Woman Too": "I move with the flow of the seasons / I don't make sense but I have my reasons / so hear me roar / when I'm ignored." Do the bookstores in Australia only stock second-wave feminists' texts?

"Boy With a Barbie" is chock-full of more cringe-inducing lyrics ("boys with their Barbies / and girls with toy armies / we don't have to play by their rules / boys being prudes / while the girls make their moves / we don't have to play by their rules!"), but at least it's a decent dance song if you tune out the insipid lyrics.

Can we please call a moratorium on life-affirming little-kid choral interludes? Lee drags out the moppets on no fewer than six irritating tracks.

On "Bad Poetry," he sings: "I love you so much / please don't show anyone this stuff / it's between you and me / this bad poetry." If only ...

More by Kristine Peashock


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

The Range

TSO Presents 007-themed Show Next Weekend

Boris Blows Your Mind (and the Rest of Your Body) Away

Laughing Stock: Odd as Ever; Ever Laughable

More »

Latest in Rhythm & Views

  • Rhythm & Views

    American Monoxide “In Flight Mode” (People In A Position To Know)
    • Dec 18, 2014
  • Rhythm & Views

    Wight Lhite “Beyond the Satellites” (Paisley Shirt Records)
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Vintage Vinyl

    Frozen Sun “Got to Get Away”/ “Jamm Part 1” Capt. Zoomar Records, FC6902, 1969
    • Oct 12, 2017
  • Know Your Product!

    Stars Pick Their Top 5! This week: Trackstar the DJ
    • Oct 5, 2017
  • More »

Facebook Activity

© 2017 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation