Best New Children's Music 2012 / OWTK Kindie Album Reviews

Flannery Brothers – The New Explorers Club CD Review


The Sound: Giddy, acoustic pop-rock.

In the Cafeteria, They Sit With: Dog on Fleas, Todd Wees, Ratboy Jr.

Best Moments: Relying on nothing more than a barely mic-ed ukulele strum, some whistling, and the expansive wonder of the blue sea, “Sea Glass” glistens.  The Flannery Brothers are truly a goofy pair, but with lyrics like “Walking down the coastline / taking my sweet time / seaweed / sea stars / seagulls / sunshine / and then I saw a little twinkle down along the periwinkle”, they show their range and prove that they can get pretty, well, pretty.

I generally look down on high fives, feeling like an awkward frat boy every time my hand goes skyward to meet up with another, but with “Hi 5 Dance” the brothers Flannery transform the familiar stadium celebration into a dance kids will love. And okay, okay, I’ve done it too. You know, it feels kinda good to have that off my chest.

Swallowing a bug is something I also, as a rule, frown upon but darn if the Brothers don’t make it sound like one of the funniest accidental incidents ever (“Swallowed A Bug”). This, I have not done…and that feels good too.

Summer’s all over, but the horns, shakers, and sunny-day-imagery of “Big Kite” will warm you and your kids up a little bit during these overcast and chilly Autumn weekends.

Bonus Thoughts: To celebrate the release of “New Explorers Club”, the Flannery Brothers are giving away another new album for FREE! Yes, you’re reading that correctly.  The zany duo from Maine is so confident you will buy their new disc, they are handing out a complimentary digital copy of the 12-song remix album “Dance Song For Silly Kids” to any and all.  Score it here.

Bonus Bonus Thought: I’m showing the entire CD spread up top because “The New Explorers Club” has one of the best art layouts of any kindie CD released this year.

Okay, Time to Wrap it Up with a Nice Little Bow: Other than finally being able to identify a parrot from a pirate and perform a new hand-slapping dance, your kids probably aren’t going to learn a thing from “The New Explorers Club” – and that’s what makes this uncomplicated album so terrific.  Flannery Brothers seek only smiles and an honest chuckle. And, at least in my household, they get lots of both. Like the peaceful expression on the face of a sleeping child, this disc is a simple pleasure that has the ability to make an entire day sunnier than it actually is. 

If there is a theme with the Flannery Brothers, it’s making everything – swallowing bugs, lying down on the “Kitchen Floor”, finding a “Quiet Place” – sound like the coolest thing in the world. As you might imagine then, it’s kinda impossible to be sad when this CD is spinning.

“The New Explorers Club” is the feel-good kindie album of 2010.

*A copy of “The New Explorers Club” was provided to OWTK for review. The opinions expressed above are unbiased and true – no arm twisting took place in the review process.

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