The true beauty of Flight Of The Conchords is in knowing that the band is actually a comedy act. Without being in the know one would probably listen to the Wellington, New Zealand duo and think them to be the worst band ever. I refuse to believe that effect is by design, since it completely defies the traditional logic of being in a band to make good music. Who practices the guitar — or any instrument for that matter — just to evoke that common facial expression of utter disgust and contempt, for what their ears were just subjected to?
To this writer's amazement, there is a huge market for The Conchords' brand of music. From the earliest beginnings, Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement struck the right chord with listeners. This cult audience later expanded with the help of a self-titled HBO show that perfectly visualized the band's humor and sensibility.
Having previously watched the show, listening to The Conchords' self-titled LP feels more like an audible refill of my Conchords on the rocks. Despite my seeming lack of enthusiasm for listening to something I've already seen with my eyes, there is still much to be enjoyed with the combination of McKenzie's clueless and Clement's deadpan vocal stylings; as experienced through the pseudo-techno apathy of "Inner City Pressure," the sympathetic feel-good joy of "Think About It," and the sort-of-gritty ghettoness of "Mutha'uckas."
It was difficult to listen to many of the songs without having my brain constantly trying to refer to the episodes each was featured in. The series opener began with what has to be both the most romantic and unromantic — maybe even insulting — song ever in "The Most Beautiful Girl (In The Room)" that has Clement vie for the affections of a gorgeous blonde, only to be rejected and later on — in the episode "Sally Returns" — wonder whether she was the one that got away. It is perfectly serenaded in the honest and genuine marital romance of "Business Time". The offbeat, yet steady lyrics of "Hiphopopotamus Vs. Rhymenoceros" grace the episode "Mugged" where the two get, you guessed it, mugged and later confront their attackers, which is also my favorite.
Flight Of The Conchords showcases their brilliance on two fronts. One is musical, because each song is undeniably pleasant, while the other is conceptual, because each song is filled with the most amusing storytelling.