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Monty Python Sings

4.8 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 11, 1992
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Years of sidesplitting songs from Flying Circus and Python movies are distilled into one 25-track CD: Always Look on the Bright Side of Life; Sit on My Face; Lumberjack Song; Every Sperm Is Sacred; Spam Song; Bruce's Philosophers Song; Brian Song , and more!

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Though this seminal British comedy team is better known for authority-tweaking absurdist wordplay and surrealist visual hijinks, music has always been an essential element in the troupe's twisted universe. Monty Python Sings collects 25 musical Python nuggets from the team's album catalogue, including such beloved ditties as "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life," "Lumberjack Song," "I'm So Worried," "Spam Song," "Bruces' Philosophers' Song," "I Like Chinese," and "Knights of the Round Table." With so much Python music gathered in one place, it's impressive to note just how many of the sextet's musical excursions have become cult classics. --Scott Schinder
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 11, 1992)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Virgin
  • ASIN: B000000WIA
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,378 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Daniel J. Hamlow HALL OF FAME on October 22, 2003
Format: Audio CD
And now, for something completely different. There are 25 songs taken from Monty Python's TV series, movies, and other comedy albums, some that are so memorable, it isn't surprising to hear someone singing them at a whim, other obscure ones that are downright hilarious and/or gross, and those featured in their TV show and movies. But others are like, "Gordon Bennett, this is so naff! What'd they include it in 'ere for?" Consequently, I'll not go through every song, but be warned if I do get silly--Python tends to do that to people.
"Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life", sung by Eric Idle and the crucified prisoners at the end of Life Of Brian, starts out the album. Basically: "life's a piece of ****, when you look at it/life's a laugh and death's a joke, it's true/you'll see it's a show/keep'em laughing as you go/just remember that the last laugh is on you." A breezy, humorous, but pointed look at "the final word."
"The Lumberjack Song" is by far THE classic Python song. In this rendition, Michael Palin leads off by a weather report, before he sings, "I didn't want to do this for a living. I wanted to be... a lumberjack!" and the rest is history. Note: if anyone hears me singing "I cut down trees/I wear high heels/suspenders and a bra", PLEASE don't take me seriously. I'm an environmentalist and would NOT cut down trees. Yours etc. D.J. Hamlow, Mrs.
The brief "(Not the Noel Coward Song)" from Meaning Of Life is a 41 second laugh-out-loud ditty on "your wife's best friend", the one sung before Mr. Creosote comes into the restaurant.
"Oliver Cromwell" sung by John Cleese, is set to Frederic Chopin's Polonaise No. 6 and is a delight for English history buffs.
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Format: Audio CD
I was so happy to find this collection. I've loved Monty Python series and movies and admired the multi-talented group. Nothing was too holy for them to be laughed at - and so should it be, laughing at something makes even the most horrible and difficult things shrink down to a size, where we can look at them and deal with them. And yet they always maintained quality in their work.
This record is a good example: it has songs from the series and such movies as 'The meaning of life', 'The life of Brian' and 'The quest for the holy Grail'. Of course, Eric Idle shines here with his 'Always look on the bright side of life', hilarious 'Penis song' and 'Bruces' philosophers song' being the author and composer of all these and many others. And as a performer... well, you can't listen to his voice without bursting into a huge smile. 'Always look on the bright side of life' really saves the day, no matter how bad things look.
The subjects are varied, some of them laugh casually at sex, such as 'Sit on my face'. It wasn't at all awkward to listen to them, because the ambitious, very serious way everything is arranged with violins, flutes, male choirs and symphony orchestras lifts the songs from being a bit naughty to something absolutely irresistible. You can only laugh and sing along. And can anybody go to church and listen to hymns seriously after hearing the lovely boy choir singing Eric Idle's 'All things dull & ugly'?
'Bruces' philosopher's song' and 'Knights of the round table' weren't technically as good as others, unfortunately. I was going to give four stars, but had to give the fifth one for Michael Palin for making 'Finland', even if it's clearly made by someone who's never been here - and I understood that's just the point. Sorry, Michael, we don't have mountains. Only some fells, none of them even a mile high.
Have a laugh, get this. The songs are so well made, that you can listen them still, when you already know the joke.
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it's a good idea on the whole. music was always a fertile ground for Python satire. and indeed, if you're a true Pythonian, "Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life" means just as much to you as that dead parrot sketch or the Fish-Slapping Dance. but the execution leaves a few questions open.
perhaps most obviously, there's the omissions. where the hell are "Traffic Lights" and "I Bet You They Won't Play This Song On The Radio"? someone's already gearing up to mention that they are readily available on the immediate predecessor, the 2-disc Python retrospective The Final Rip-Off. that's true, but as it happens a handful of other ditties ("Lumberjack Song," "Henry Kissinger," "Sit On My Face") ended up pulling that very double-duty. so really, what's two more overlaps?
(actually, the question i'd really like to ask is the other way around: The Final Rip-Off clocks in at about an hour and 57 minutes, leaving more than half an hour's worth of potentially useful cd vacant. so why not work "Galaxy Song," "The Meaning Of Life," and "Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life" into there somewhere?)
then there's the truncations. "Spam Song," "Finland Song," "Eric The Half-A-Bee," and "Bruces' Philosopher Song" are each a little "off" for being detached from the skits from which they sprang. the "spam. spam, spam" refrain is just bizarre without the buildup of the waitress and the middle-aged couple debating the merits of the substance in question. (whereas the intact sketch is such a mundane slice of everyday life, huh?)
and inevitably, there are songs herein we could live without, particularly "Penis Song" and "Accountancy Shanty." (thank God both are only about a minute long.) but then of course, how many cds do you have on which every single song is a masterpiece?
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