Ween

La Cucaracha (Chocodog / Rounder)

Phases & Stages

Ween

La Cucaracha (Chocodog/Rounder)

Half the fun of listening to Ween is trying to discern how much gravitas informs their strange and singular musical ambiguity song by song. Next to 2003's comparatively straight-shooting Quebec, Ween's first studio album in four years is flush with quick right turns. It's easy enough to ferret out intentions when Mickey "Dean Ween" Melchiondo bellows, "She's gonna be my cock professor" on big, dumb rock opus "My Own Bare Hands," but what about "Woman and Man"? The 10-minute guitar-shredding epic bears more than a passing resemblance to Santana, but is it truly a soul sacrifice? Likewise, "Spirit Walker," with its string arrangement and lyrics, wouldn't be entirely out of place on a John Denver LP. By the time David Sanborn shows up to play cocktail sax on "Your Party," you don't know whether to laugh or sway in time to the music.

***

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