Sunday, June 21, 2015

Your Album Cover is Scaring Everybody

Sam Harris - Self-Titled - 1984

VVer #1 picked this up at a Goodwill for its awful cover.  Funny right?  Deep regrets.  It seems possible that worse 80's Motown records have been made, but the VVers are willing to bet that this one is scarier than most.  How did this thing even end up on Motown?  A joke?  Maybe someone lost a bet?  A cry for help?  Was it the 80's that led to the once mighty Motown losing its clout, or this record?
Please, be frightened.
Let's examine the evidence:
Exhibit A:  The Back Cover (see above).  Scared yet?

Exhibit B:  The Music (the VVers have taken one for the team so you don't have to).  Bask in the maelstrom of 80's pop tropes (synths, canned percussion, ear-splitting histrionic singing) that worked moderately well for George Michael, Michael Jackson, Prince, and others... except in this case not nearly so listenable.  The second song on the LP, "Sugar Don't Bite" sounds so much like "Papa Don't Preach" that you'll likely just take this piece of garbage and toss it off your balcony and pop on True Blue instead.  Madonna's worst songs sound better than this cluster.  Turns out Mr. Harris recorded his tune two years prior, so Madonna must have been a fan.  Anything is possible.  From here, too many power ballads slow jam your face into infinity.  Is there more to say about these tunes?  One thing, the version he does of "Over the Rainbow" is without a doubt the most horrifying thing you will ever possibly hear.  Imagine Judy Garland spinning in her grave like a top.

Want to know why Sam Harris is singing "Over the Rainbow" on his debut LP?  Mr. Harris is in fact a product of reality television (not surprising at all) circa 1983 and that was his signature song.  He turns out to be the male vocalist champion of the very first year of Star Search.  Heard of Star Search?  No?  Think American Idol, but instead hosted by Ed McMahon and it's the 80's.  Sounds great, right?

Not to digress... but what about this album art?  Seriously, did nobody try and stop this from happening?  Who actually thought it was a good idea to dress up your singer in a horrifying suit made out of pieces of seven-inch gold and silver records?  Not to mention the silver glitter Converse All-Stars.  I mean, you've got to earn that level of bad Mr. Harris.  But you!  You just decided it was ok to go there.  How many people lost their jobs because of this album?  Think of the children!  Stop shouting!!!

Exhibit C:  The Front Cover.  He's got a tone arm attached to his lapel.  How many turntables were harmed to make this suit Mr. Harris?  HOW MANY!?!
Exhibit D:  The inner sleeve.
This f&@#(g guy.
Looks kind of cool in black and white, but the mullet...

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