Monday, July 04, 2005

Review: At the Bottom of the Sea - Ralph's World

With his first, self-titled Ralph's World album, Ralph Covert immediately set the standard for 21st century kids' music -- musically diverse and lyrically targeted at kids while winking at their parents.

It is not a criticism of his second kids' album, At the Bottom of the Sea, to say that it's just like the first CD, only more so. At the Bottom of the Sea is even more musically diverse than Ralph’s World, from the country stylings of “Honey for the Bears” to the faux-Beach Boys sound of “Surfin’ in My Imagination” to the pirate chanty “What Can You Do with Your Baby Brother?” The parents will probably bob their heads happily during the “Banana Splits” theme song; my wife especially appreciates “The Coffee Song,” which obviously bears the imprint of having been created waaay too early one morning (a wild guess on my part which Covert has confirmed in subsequent interviews). Even his rendition of "Itsy Bitsy Spider" has enough subtle humor to keep the parents amused while maintaining a simplistic approach to the song that will hold the attention of the very youngest.

Given that Covert’s daughter is probably a couple years older than when he wrote the songs on Ralph’s World, the songs on this album are targeted mostly at kids between 3 and 8. Covert's popularity means that if any non-Disney CD is to be found at a Best Buy, it's his; otherwise, the usual online suspects are the place to go.

If you liked Covert's other Ralph's World CDs, you'll like this one. Recommended.


Anonymous said...

Covert strikes me as a bit creepy. His songs are a bit self-absorbed and, frankly, not very clever. The times I have seen him, I have not been very impressed.

Stefan said...

Thanks for the comment!

I've not seen Covert in concert, so I can't comment regarding his performances. I can understand the "self-absorbed" comment, if by that you mean he can be just as interested in slyly amusing the parents as he is in entertaining their kids.

But I do think he's just as clever as the other major kids' artists -- he's just as likely, though, to do something really sweet.

Anonymous said...

I don't find him creepy. We have seen him several times in concert and even booked him for our twin daughter's birthday party at home. He was terrific (he even helped out serving smoothies).
Self absorbed, yes, what artist isn't?