Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias

They really put the "t" in "Los"!
*special introductory paragraph!
*Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias
*Italians From Outer Space
*Snuff Rock EP
*Skite
*Radio Sweat CD

Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias were a lovable motley group of British rock and roll funnymen who set the fields of flame alight with laughter from the mid-'70s through the early '80s. Their colorful palette of wide-ranging musical parody was designed to make you not just smile but actively chuckle as you boogied, slamdanced or did your little toodly-doo thing. They seem to have been fans of the Bonzo Dog Band, Monty Python and English wits of that type, but their humor was a bit more coarse, obscene and rockin' than their predecessors. Had Ween been around in the '70s, they would perhaps have been considered "American contemporaries" of A.Y.L.T.P. No no, not "Weird Ayltp" Yankovic! Ha ha! See? Just the very notion of this band makes me crack out in giggles of fuckoffery! Talk about your shit-eating grins! Talk about the front part of your legs below the knee and above the ankle devouring white meal of dried and hulled corn kernels!

(grit-eating shins)


Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias - Transatlantic 1976
Rating = 8

Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias introduced themselves to the world through ten succinct and occasionally witty works of stylistic parody. Specifically, they parody (a) funk, (b) early rock and roll, (c) sleazy '70s country-western, (d) reggae, (e) acid rock, (f) southern rock, (g) Lou Reed, (h) Frank Zappa (I think), (i) old-timey religious country-western, and (j) art rock. If you like any or all of these styles, consider yourself a fan of Alberto Y Lost Tr;a jesus I'm tired.

My cholesterol is really high, I just found out. So no more Pizza Uno 5 nights a week for me! Fuckin' cheese. Tasting all good and then trying to ruin my body. What an asshole. I should write a book called Who Moved My Cheese (Into My Arteries, Where The Bastard Just Sat There and Hardened)?. I've even already come up with a tagline: "It came from a cow, so I assumed it was healthy!" Yes, now it's all falling into place.

I just glanced at a headline on Yahoo! that says "Altruistic love related to happier marriages," and I thought it said "Autistic love," which kinda freaked me out because that's not the sort of thing you can fake. I also have two non-existent movie lines (LOUSY movie lines too) running through my head during private moments all the time. One is "I wouldn't say I'm unconcerned. UNDERconcerned maybe..." and the other is "Yeah, but that kind of thing's almost impossible to prove!" If you're a big-time Hollywood movie producer and would like to base a film on either of those lines of dialogue, let me know and I'll shoot you over a standard contract.

A gigantic group comprised of CP Lee, Jimmy Hibbert, Bruce Mitchell, Les Prior, Tony Bowers, Simon White and Bob Harding, Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias filled their debut album with lots of guitars, blue words and sex jokes, all produced very well so you can hear everything. The jokes are everywhere: in the lyrics, the music, the delivery, the asides... Many are clever, others are grotesque and offputting. Here, let me give you a few billy samples of their strengths and unstrengths:

FUNNY, HALF-SENSICAL RHYMES: "Hand me the switch and the sausage roll/I gotta make you suffer like a lump of coal"

GROSS UNFUNNY SEX GAGS: The Elvisy rocker "Pavlov" features an intro about performing cunnilungus, and lyrically only goes downhill from there. Similarly, the narrator of sweaty country shit "I Like Gurls" vomits on at length about the ugly, stinky, hairy women that he finds attractive.

STELLAR MUSICIANSHIP AND SPOT-ON PARODY: Very few bands (Ween is one) can jump so effortlessly back and forth between so many unrelated genres and manage to sound authentic at each one.

OBVIOUS SOCIAL COMMENTARY: "Jesus Wept" insinuates that radio and TV evangelists are really only after your money. HOW COULD THIS BE!?!?

LAUGH-OUT-LOUD MUSICAL HUMOR: The acid rock epic "Follow The Guru" takes the listener on an endless mystical voyage through dark guitar harmonics tapping, synthesizer bwoops, funky rock riffs, gigantic DRAMATIC rock melodies, jam-out guitar solos, pitch-manipulated vocals, soaring echoed lead hooks, mindblowing backwards guitar effects, a meditative "cool down" middle section filled with wind chimes and eerie ambient space-sound, a return to balls-out-and-flapping Deep Purple/Led Zeppelin hard blues rock, and a fantastic (fake) in-studio aside ("Hang on - I can't reach the bass part.... Shit!") before coming to a close with the longest "laugh-til-you-cry" series of false ends you will likely ever hear.

GENRES THAT SUCK: Is there anybody in the world (including the band members) who actually enjoy every single genre represented on this record? I mean, I would enjoy the funk and most of the rock stuff even if it wasn't funny, but reggae? Gross drunken '70s country/western? Bakersfield preacher music? I don't know. Small complaint, I know, but it does say something when a song that cracks me up as much as "Dread Jaws" still wears thin really fuckin' quickly simply because - well, it's reggae. HOLY SHIT, I just realized something.

Do you people know I have a song called "Disco Jaws"? The joke is that I'm making fun of '70s pop culture, pretending that the song was a timely earnest attempt to combine the hottest musical craze with the biggest blockbuster of the year -- but Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias had apparently done the same exact thing (but with reggae instead of disco) DURING THE ACTUAL SEVENTIES. Christ, how fuckin' behind the eight-ball (heroin) can I be!? Well, just for the record, I hadn't even heard of this band back when I recorded "Disco Jaws." And my song's catchier, say leading experts. Still, can you beat hearing a guy with a fake Jamaican accent say of a shark that "for too long he has plagued Babylon"?

Sure you can! With "Disco Jaws"! ("He'll bite you, bite you - cuz he's Disco Jaws! Bite you, bite you - cuz he's Disco Jaws!" - aww, come on! Who's with me!?) But enough about my failed musical career and hairline.

But that's not all! (about Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias' first album) They even take aim at specific artists! "Anadin" is a classic, presenting Lou Reed as the commercial jingle pitchman for Anadin headache medication, reciting lines like "Take your little pills-pills" in a voice that sounds even more bored than the REAL Lou. I could be wrong about this next one, but I'd swear that "6.45" is a parody of Frank Zappa's slimeball "radio material" from the '70s -- "Dirty Love," "Dinah-Moe Humm" and that kind of thing. It's all sleazy with horns and shit, the vocals are low and in the front of the mix, and its lyrics contain such Zappa-esque diamonds as "Went on down to Main Street, looking for some snatch" and "Hips like a snake with diarrhea and lips like a little girl." And although "Mandrax Sunset Variations 1, 2 and 3" is a parody of the pretentious boring psychedelic Hawkwind/Gong art rock drug community as a whole (complete with utterly basic rock riffs, meaningless poetry, pointless Shakespeare recitations, and the announcement "This is your Captain speaking. Your Captain is knackered."), the closing riff is very clearly a reference to Pink Floyd's "Echoes," an actual song by Pink Floyd from the album Meddle called "Echoes" by Pink Floyd.

I like this band. There are definitely some 'misses' on this record, but when they're on, they're way on - and they're on quite often. You have to have a sense of humor to love this sort of thing (obviously), but much of the music can be enjoyed on its own merits, if you like these genres at all. The funk song is funky, the Southern rock song is full of Allman Brothers-style harmonized guitar riffin', the acid rock epic does rock epicly and acidically - it's just that the band is also "taking your piss."

And "drinking it."

I'll close this review with the spoken closing section of "6.45": "I think it's getting bigger! I can feel it getting - oh. Oh well."

Reader Comments

t_trudeau@tru.ca
Hey! I opened my radio show with "Disco Jaws!"

nasher53@gmail.com
Hi...just thought I'd mention that when I first saw the Albertos in '74, along with all the rest, they also did a pisstake of Alan Ginsberg....costumed with a sheet, plastic glasses/nose and half a football for bald head....as far as I know no-one else ever parodied Ginsberg...but then whaddo I know...?

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* Italians From Outer Space - Transatlantic 1977 *
Rating = 10

You'll laugh so hard, you'll be shittin' somebody ELSE'S pants, let alone mine! You'll be pissin' vinegar and gorghin' zola! You'll be overheatin' and wearthemeatmin'! Best of all, you'll be carrying a fat bankroll of laughter and wearing a wet suit of uncontrollable bowels after 45 minutes with Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias tickling your rib-condomed dickle with the scandalous entertainment of humor! That's why I declare Italians From Outer Space not only the greatest Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias LP, but in fact one of the finest comedy rock albums ever released in 1977.

This is not a mere carbon copy of their self-titled debut, so get that whisker out of your ass right now, Ol' Whisker-ass. You fucking Whisker-ass. Who the fuck do you think you are, coming over here with that whisker up your ass and trying to p

This is not a mere carbon copy of their self-titled debut, so don't think that for a second. Instead, this release combines the genre parody of that album with an egantic number of funny spoken skits and in-studio gags that bring to mind the finest work of Monty Python's Flying Circus, which is sort of the Fridays of Great Britain. Unfortunately, the volume is all screwball because they talk a lot quieter than they rock, but that's no reason to scudgenut (or sludgeboat) a CD this witty and wonderful.

Terrific musical parodies include:

- A nostalgic piano/guitar/pedal steel/violin song about a long-gone dog. Although he's not gone for the reason you might expect! <--(foreshadowing)

- A beautifully-harmonized early '70s soft rock pop tune, apparently on the subject of 350-lb Greek crooner Demis Roussos (and this was even before his plane was hijacked in 1985!!! Albertos clairvoyance, anyone????) (Probably not, no)

- A "rhythmic dialogue" experiment that you'll easily recognize as a Frank Zappa send-up even before you notice that its title is "Invocation Of The Fundamental Orifice of St. Agnes"

- A punk song featuring the classic 'revolutionary' verse, "Come on, bass player/You can join in too!/Play a counter-rhythm/While I go sniff some glue!"

- An on-spot Bob Dylan parody lamenting the execution of Angolan War of Independence mercenary Costas Georgiou

- A macho hard rock song led by a tough guy singer who almost immediately forgets all the words

- A rednecky funk rocker highlighted by Barry White making ridiculous and poorly double-entendre'd rhymes

- Southern-fried three-chord boogie about oral sex. The title? "Wholefood Love"!

- Two doo-wops (GET IT? WOPS??? ITALIANS???? Never mind.), which is one too many quite frankly, but oh well.

- A sorrowful country-western track with piano, pedal steel, acoustic arpeggios, and a singer who starts crying during the final verse

- Two more Southern boogie rockers with Thin Lizzy-style dueling lead guitars. Why so Southern boogie-ish, Messers British People? This is a question we all pose sometimes.

Skits and giggles include:

- A haughty British party interrupted by a crude woman (i.e. man in falsetto) shouting, "It's getting bigger! You know it'll never go in that wittle bitty hole! Anybody got any Vaseline???" Although she's not saying it for the reason you might expect! <--(eyeshadowing)

- A Firesign Theatre-esque skit that involves a detective flirting outrageously with a crime victim's daughter right in front of him (ex: "I bet you've never seen one of THESE!" *zipper noise*)

- A FANFRIGGINGTASTIC parody/cover of the intro to "Bob Dylan's 115th Dream," whose inclusion of just a few extra seconds of group laughter makes it clear exactly how STUPID it is that 95% of music fans (including me) find that intro 'hilarious'. IT'S NOT FUNNY!!! (This parody is, though.)

- Barry White accidentally phone-romancing a Pizza Place

- A side-splashingly guffawable Money Pylon-esque skit in which a gross British lout keeps screaming to his wife that he wants bacon. It would sound funnier if I didn't describe it so shittily.

- An angry British judge slowly and methodically condemning a man to death.... for his REFUSAL TO BOOGIE! (*segue into Southern boogie song*)

- Many other things

In short-form, Italians From Outer Space is a never-concluding smorgasbord of absurdity, silliness, catchy hooks, diverse song styles, brilliant humorism, smart-as-beans ad libbing, strange pop culture references, terrific vocals, zany comedy skits, talented musicianship, and all-around quality scumball entertainment. Nineteen tracks worth! I can't figure out what that is on the album cover though. Can anybody?

Well tough shib, I'm playing Tago Mago anyway.

HA! Krautrock humor! I like jokes.

Here's a joke I made up just now, as proof that I like jokes:

Q: What do you get when you cross Lindsay Lohan with a dining room table?
A: A prostitute with four legs!!!!

Hmm. Maybe it's not 'jokes' I like at all.

Oh, I remember! It's 'blokes.' I'm gay.

Gay on LIFE, that is!!! Ha ha! The only 'blokes' that interest me are the kind you'll find inside a pair of RIPE MELON-SIZED TITS!!!!

Wait - what the hell are those guys doing in there? Get outta there, you!

Reader Comments

rkolke@shaw.ca (Richard Kolke)
Hey Mark:

Itís nice to see someone else who not only appreciates the finer things in life but has the necessary time to waste reviewing them on his own website.

The cover of Italians from Outer Space would appear (to me, anyway) to be a footprint of a pointy-toed Italian shoe on the surface of the moon next to the strut from the lunar lander and what I used to think was a jar of spaghetti sauce (not too sure any more).

You might also be interested to know that if you e-mail CP Lee at cp.lee@ntlworld.com he will be happy to sell you a copy of his autographed book about the Berts (titled When We Were Thin) as well as boot DVDís of the bandís appearances on BBC Sight and Sound and Rockpalast.

After I received the above swag in the mail I asked him about the ultra-rare single Cruising With Santa and he ripped a copy to CD and mailed it to me for free (!). Very nice man.

Add your thoughts?


Snuff Rock EP - Stiff 1977
Rating = 7

Today I slept until 5 goddamned 15 in the evening -- for a full SIXTEEN HOURS of sleep! That's why this review is going to be short - it's almost bedtime!

The Snuff Rock EP is a very short punk rock parody (4 songs, 9 minutes), pulled from the Albertos' popular stage show Sleak, apparently about a rock star guy who is talked into committing suicide onstage. I don't know much more about the context, but these four songs are full of suicide references - the ultimate rebellious punk rock act being that of suicide, I guess. Sound a bit ripped off from National Lampoon's Lemmings? That's because it probably was!

However, the first song ("Kill") is awesomely catchy with its "Now I Wanna Be A Good Boy" riff, overdone Brit-punk accent and hilariously over-violent lyrics ("Gonna cut me liver out and nail it to your door!"), and the set-closer "Snuffin' Inna Babylon" is a hilarious and appropriate stab at the strange penchant of early punkers to adopt Rastafari reggae as a secondary influence. The other two are passable, but no great steaks really. The vocals on "Gobbing On Life" certainly do resemble those of Mr. John(ny Rotten) Lydon, but the slow protopunk music is total Dictators, not Pistoly at all. And you'd be hard-pressed to even identify the by-the-numbers punker "Snuffin' Like That" as a parody if somebody didn't inform you of its status as such. And that's the whole record! Whee!

So that's one great song, one witty Rasta joke, one accurate Johnny Rotten impersonation and one basic punker. And the entire concept was ripped off from National Lampoon, only to be later (failingly) appropriated by Mr. GG Allin. It's unfortunate that Snuff Rock has become so rare because it's a fun little record that's worth owning, but it's not anywhere near good (or lengthy) enough to justify the amount of money you'd have to pay for a copy. Goddamn you, the partial equilibrium supply and demand economic model originally developed by Alfred Marshall!

Okay, it's 6:43 PM. Time for bed! (*fucks something*)

Reader Comments

sttheresem@hotmail.com
You are taking this group serious, they deserve that...
Kill is a Damned fine song!
Gobbing On Life is like you said very Rotten.
Snuffin' Like That is impossible to define except that it is not serious.
Like most punkgroups.
Snuffin' In A Babylon is a parody of a parody and impossible to understand outside the context.
My favourite EP of all time. And thank you for reviewing it!

ron@roneve.co.uk
I saw the stage show, Sleak, at Camden's Roundhouse in the early 70's - one of the funniest shows I've seen and a truly great parody of rock bands and their entourage.

Add your thoughts?


Skite - Logo 1978
Rating = 7

It's all snowy today! That didn't prevent me from sleeping until 4:20 PM though.

Skite reveals my ignorance of late '70s British pop culture; I simply don't GET a lot of these parodies. Half of the songs are great compositions in and of themselves, but I know there's more going on here than meets the ear for dinner, and it infuriates me that I lack the anthropological background to appreciate the subtleties of its referential offerings. For example, I absolutely love the fast, fun glammy "Heads Down, No Nonsense Mindless Boogie," but there's no way in Heck I would have known it was a Status Quo parody had I not read so online -- because, aside from "Pictures of Matchstick Men," I don't really know what Status Quo sounds like! Likewise, who the hell is "Mother Superior" supposed to sound like? It's a great tune, mixing a George Harrison-style vocal melody with tough late-70's rock tones, but surely that's not ALL it is. This is a joke band! What's the joke? Please tell me if you know! Same with "God Is Mad"! Same with "Rockin' Sav' Yer'"! Same with "23"! Same with "Peter Parker"! Not "Juan Lopez" though because I can tell that's ABBA.

So, having admitted my arrogant American ne-er-do-wellism, let me try to describe what we have here in terms of actual music sounds. It's a return to the multi-genre parody action of the debut album (with no skits or anything) but there definitely seems to be more in the way of "parodies of actual artists rather than genres as a whole" than on that release. For what I do recognize and get, "Juan Lopez" is an absolutely gorgeous vocal-tastic ABBA sendup that's far, far more beautiful than any ABBA song I've ever heard; "Thank You" is a catchy, biting and funny Sex Pistols send-up bemoaning the death of punk; and neither a reggae cover of "Where Have All The Flowers Gone?," nor a doo-wop cover of "Anarchy In The U.K.," nor especially a strangulatingly pointless 'dub' version of the reggae cover of "Where Have All The Flowers Gone?" do a thing to justify their appearance on dried vinyl. If the whole album were as bad as those three songs, I'd exclaim, "Skite? More like SHITE!!!" But it's not; it's actually quite an enjoyable record.

The word "Skite" has several definitions in Scotland and North England, including:
1. a quick, oblique blow or stroke; a chopping blow.
2. a joke or prank.
3. the butt of a joke or prank.
4. a person whose opinions are not taken seriously; one held in mild contempt.

There! Wasn't that insightful???

I'm so upset about this. I've looked everywhere online to try to find more information about these songs, but I can't find ANYTHING! So what I've provided for you here is essentially a worthless, information-free review of what I know to be a good album, but fear might actually be a GREAT album if only I knew what the devil they were trying to accomplish in half of the songs. Say, you know what? Perhaps you're British or smart. Let me try to describe a few of the others for you - maybe you'll be able to figure out what they're supposed to be:

- "23" - A very low-voiced British man talks about how 'macho' and 'mean' he is atop goofy synths and 3 or basic new wave notes. ????

- "Peter Parker" - Starts with echoey guitar, dramatic dialogue, slide guitar spacey ambience and a drumroll, then goes into Pink Floyd's "Careful With That Axe, Eugene" but with vocals that sound like Genesis P-Orridge, then turns into Devo-ey disco, then gets really ugly, then goes into a double-guitar harmonized lick and concludes with cacophonous piano noise, drum thumping and a false end. ?????

- "Rockin' Sav' Yer'" - Fast fun Southern-tinged goodtime rock and roll that begins with the lyrics, "I'm maiden British; you wouldn't think it from the way I sound/I've practiced for years just to get my vowels round/I'm a legend in my lifetime - don't you think that's neat?" ?????

- "God Is Mad" - Very sci-fi-ey, with phased drum effects, oddball synth noises, a basic tonic-subdominant-dominant piano line, a ridiculously happy triple-sax solo in the middle, and robotic voices reciting great irreverent lyrics about God's plan to smite all people who wear false teeth or eyeglasses ("If there is a God, why must he be sane?/He's probably a raving fruithead, out of his tiny brain!") ?????

Anyone? If you can explain these four tracks and "Mother Superior" for me, consider yourself the official reviewer of this album!

In celebration of today's record-setting snowfall in Manhattan, here are some snow jokes for your family:

Knock knock!
Who's there?
Snow!
Snow who?
Remember that shitty Canadian rapper 'Snow'? Him!
Ew. Go away.
Please. I'm so lonely.

What's the difference between snow and sweet sweet Colombian cocaine?
One makes your skin turn cold and blue - the other comes from the sky!

Why did the snow cross the road?
The wind blew it
Why did the Olympics cross the road?
Michelle Kwan blew it!

What do snow and Linkin Park fans have in common?
They're all a bunch of flakes!

What do snow and a traffic light have in common?
If it turns yellow and then red, there's something wrong with your kidney!

There, now that you've had a great time, etc., whee!

Reader Comments

Bristolianish@aol.com
looking for albertos on cd and found your reviews

I bought skite brand new in 78 ish and it's still a favourite album .. though like to many of us I admit to rarely playing vinyl these days.

just like to make one or two comments ..

Peter Parker is pure parody of Syd Barrett ex floyd front man and acid victim.. he did a song called vegetable man that involes getting on the bus and paranoia .. its a not so subtle joke.

23 is a parody of british punk icon and alas 6 years dead blokey called Ian Dury. Check him out. His "New Boots and Panties" Album was a classic.

Of course cp lee went on to front supercharge .. alas I am still looking for a version of "she moved the dishes first"

thanks for your informative website

(the next day)

being thinking around the other two tracks that were puzzling and I have it sussed I think!

It's a clever double skit because both tracks are take offs of other bands that were themselves skit merchants.

God is Mad is a piss take of a mad group called The Bonzo Dog Doodah Band - Roger Ruskin Spear even used to play with them

Rocking Saviour is a piss take of a "fake" Country and Western Band called the Hank Wangford Band - Hank Wangford used to sing in a fake american accent and parodied country and western songs. He did one song called Jogging with Jesus! Hank Wangford was the alter ego of Dr Samuel Hutt - in real life he was a Doctor!

well it's a theory anyway and would fit the Alberto weird sense of humour - I can't remember mother superior I'll have to play it and come back to you

(a few months later)

I was wrong about cp lee I was thinking about someone else .. sorry!

mother superior is pure pink floyd psychedelia .. there is no mystery there!

by the way, on the album "Mandrax Sunset Variations" they are los trios on the front cover and lost trios everywhere else including the spine ... weird or what

Dominic
Hello,

On your Alberto pages, the song 'God is Mad' is in fact a DEVO spoof. Listen to Are we not men? & you will get it!

Brynly Clarke
23 is (parody of) Ian Dury

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Radio Sweat CD - Overground 1996
Rating = 7

This CD is credited to "CP Lee and Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias," and there's a blimingly good reason for this: Les Prior, Tony Bowers and Bob Harding are nowhere to be heard from! I guess they cleared out after Skite. Undaunted, CP, Jimmy Hibbert and Simon White carried on with some replacements for a few more years before throwing in the trowel. This 65-minute CD is separated into three sections: (a) the six-song Radio Sweat EP, supposedly released on New Hormones records in 1980 (rating = 9), (b) five "Live Trax" from late 1982 (rating = 6), and (c) four "Bonus Trax" from 1979 and 1985 (rating = 6). Perhaps I'll discuss each section separately, if time permits.

But first a piece of good news: I was out of bed by 1 PM today! Yes, only 12 hours of sleep for ol' Prind, so things are looking up. Granted, it was a Monday so I really should h - but let's not talk about that. Chalk it up to "Opportunity Cost'!

The Radio Sweat EP is one of the absolute funniest things that Alberto etc. ever produced, utilizing a "radio show" format to intersperse the usual musical parodies with fake commercials and hilarious dialogue by DJ Mike Barnes. It's not just the dialogue that's witty: it's his (their?) friendly, hapless delivery of lines like "Oh, it's just coming up to news time now - Whoops! There it went. Well, never mind; plenty more news where that came from" and (after a record fades out), "Yeah! And that was... rubbish. Peel must have left it in there."

And then there's the commercials. Oh, the commercials! Like the super-macho advert for Swanson's Fish Fingers which shouts, "They've got BALLS! Cod balls free with every order!" or the pitchman who enquires, "How good's your memory? Can't remember, eh? Then why not try... umm... these things...."

Oh yes, and then there are the other parodic radio bits, like the angry Rastafarian DJ complaining about the White Man only giving him one hour of airtime per week, a seemingly endless series of ludicrously rotten DJ jokes (DJ: "What do you do for a living?" Caller: "I'm a security guard." DJ: "Well, that sounds like a very SECURE job!"), and the real gasser of an opinion poll phone-in question ("And the subject tonight is whether or not you agree with the plans for the ratification of the SALT treaty, and what effect do you think a policy of unconditional unilateral disarmament would have on the balance of free trade in the Keynesian marketplace..."). Did somebody say "funny"? No? Well, somebody should, to support my hypothesis.

You know what this stuff reminds me of? The Young Ones! Not the main characters, but the little bits and pieces that other characters do, like "Nozin' Around" and that sort of thing. It's that sort of "a joke every 1 1/2 seconds, so pay attention" script. But wait - there's MUSIC on here too! Six songs, as a matter of fact, including a screamingly hilarious (if you're familiar with the original version) disco cover of Magazine's "Shot By Both Sides" by 'The Village Idiots'; a "Moldie Oldie" Elvis parody recorded "all the way back in 1979" (!) by 'Biscuitbarrel Bodine and the Crackers'; another Elvis parody for no clear reason (this one by 'Kilowatts'); a creepy psych-garage ballad about a cake that bleeds and cries when cut (maybe a parody of the Velvet Underground's "The Gift"?); a mockingly overhappy nonsense-ska-pop parody by "Ex-Lax's Midnight Runners"; and an absolutely ingenious American country-western protest song lamenting the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan (imagine Mr. Show's bearded "Blow Up The Moon" country star singing "Bite The Bullet Ivan!" and you've got it). Man. What a great EP! Spoken funny, musical funny - and CP even managed to 'score' the BBC's nuclear war warning tapes and include them at the end of the broadcast. It hardly even matters that the other two segments of this CD are kinda substandard because this 28-minute EP is so Christfuckingly hilarious!

Please, before I continue, I must share with you the first verse of "Gabble Natter Chatter," the Dexy's Midnight Runners parody I mentioned earlier. Imagine this being sung against a very happy horn-driven three-chord melody:

"Tony's in trouble - in trouble with the law!
Tony's been in trouble with the law before!
Well, he'd like to be rich - he's sick of being poor
That's why Tony's in trouble with the law!"

Also, the entire disc seems kinda muffled. Not sure why. But let's move on to the "Live Trax" section. These five previously unreleased tracks demonstrate that CP Lee's 'real' singing voice is fuckin' weird. He sounds like his throat is fifty feet in diameter and he's just shoving air up from his lungs and letting the throat swoop and swottle around randomly to turn the air into words as they meet the air. Alternately, Jimmy Hibbert sounds like a growly gravelly little funny guy who should be hanging out on Frank Zappa albums. A couple of the songs are catchy ("You Made A Hostage Of My Heart" is interspersed with newscaster reports about the terrorist group that is holding the heart hostage, and "Telephone," following a fun Monty Python-esque on-stage commercial, starts rockin' and reelin' as if it were in Auckland, New Zealand), but the others (Elvis Costello soul-pop, go-noplace funky rock-disco, Caribbean tribute to Sgt. Bilko) don't do much to suggest that a good Radio Sweat follow-up was in the works. God - then it takes them for fucking EVER to finish the concert because they slowly, boringly introduce every single faceless musician on stage while bleating out the riff from "Can't Turn Me Loose." One might think that such an egotistical exercise might be a parody of Ringo Starr's All-Starr Band or some other chart-topping stadium act of the day, but unfortunately it's just LAME.

And finally the "Bonus Trax." To make a short story a sentence, "Ou Est Madeline?" would be perfect for rock radio play if not for its sub-demo sound quality and lyrics about wife murder; "Table Love" is a doowop piece a crap about balling a table; "The Ballad Of Robin Hood" is ska with horns and a great fiddle; and "Alcoholotta Trouble' is a very synthetic but catchy mid-80s track with lead vocals by a guy from East Enders, which I've never seen. You probably won't laugh at any of these, but a couple of 'em have great hooks and the oth Hey! Let's win one for the Gipper!

So I was winning one for the Gipper the other day, and all of a sudden this guy walks into a bar and says to the bartender, "Gimme a diary - a bill." Bartender says, "Sure thing!," pulls his pants down, takes a liquid shit in a glass, and hands it to the guy who drinks it down with gusto. Guy next to him says, "Holy Christ! I thought you just wanted something to write in!" Guy says, "No, he gave me what I asked for. (*turns to the bartender*) Right, Bill?"

So much for humor. Let's try a bawdy limerick.

There once was a man from Nantucket
Who sat on a red rubber bucket
Along came a lass
With fine silken ass
The man said, "Your shirt's out; please tuck it."

Hmm. Didn't turn out quite as bawdy as I'd hoped, but I couldn't think of anything else that rhymes with "Nantucket." Maybe I should have had the guy come from "Penisville" or something.

But the bottom line is clear: Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias are tailormade for your record collection, whether you come from near nor far. However, if you're searching online, be sure to also try typing the band name as "LOS trios (etc)," because only about four people in the world seem to realize that the word is actually "LOST." Even though it says so on every fucking album cover.

Pricks.

Reader Comments

Bristolianish@aol.com
by the time this album was made Les Prior had died of leukaemia.

Jimmy Hibbert later left and made his fortune in the world of childrens animation.

C.P. Lee is a profesor and author

Bowers went into a band called Duratti Collumn and later Joined Simply Red.

Jerry
When i saw them they did a rock opera called Norman about a bloke with no arms or legs, they brought him on in a suitcase

Another of their gigs I went to the drummer hurled his sticks repeatedly to the sky and caught them again. Awesome. Then, at the end of the gig he threw them over the audience, they came back to him on the elastic we couldn't see.

They were supporting Thin Lizzy, the audience voted with their feet soon after Thin Lizzy came on - they left, they'd already seen the best act they were going to see that night.

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