OWTK Kindie Album Reviews

Mr. Leebot – Robot Dance CD Review

If your answer to the question “what musical genre is missing from today’s kiddie music space” is “why, 80’s flavored electro-pop, of course!” and if you’re nostalgic for a time when music videos were actually shown on music TV, your brand of jacket afforded you access to a Member’s Only club, and you did your CD (or cassette) shopping from a little mail order catalog – then boy-o-boy do I have the perfect all-ages, kid’s album for you.

While “Robot Dance” is culled from an era of music that will never be considered my favorite, Mr. Leebot does his Devo-with-a-hint-of-INXS thing very, very well.

I never thought I’d hear instructions for constructing a paper airplane set to music, but if it was going to happen I cannot imagine a more fitting musical style then the blips, hisses and sythn tones employed by Mr. Leebot. I also can’t imagine an artist more capable of pulling it off.

His lyrical observations are spot-on and hilarious. Take “Gibberish” for example – 75% of the lyrics are pure nonsense wrapped around the rad chorus of “We’re speaking gibberish/ operating without a glitch / Like a ticklish zipperfish / with a mouth full of a liquorice.” Genius.

Ever wonder what Johnny Cash would sound like singing kid’s music as the frontman of Kraftwerk? “Letters and Numbers” gives us a hint. The song, from the perspective of a child who recognizes but still doesn’t understand how to utilize numbers or the alphabet, is sweet and filled with hope…the hope of someday being able to read and to tell time on dad’s watch.

Electronica and dancy-synth pop written specifically for the grade-school-and-under set is an under-represented form of family music, no doubt. Mr. Leebot’s “Robot Dance” doesn’t change that fact but if you’ve been longing for a gnarly 80’s inspired kiddie album, wait no more.


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