Music Superlatives: The week of October 30th

All the important music questions answered from best album cover to best transition from verse to chorus. (Pixabay/Creative Commons)

All the important music questions answered from best album cover to best transition from verse to chorus. (Pixabay/Creative Commons)

I am back with another handful of shoddily researched answers to the most important questions in music history.

Best Album Cover in Music History?

Answer: Why Try Harder - Fatboy Slim

This is the album cover to Fatboy Slim’s 2006 greatest hits album, “Why Try Harder,” and it features Christopher Walken in all of his glory. The weirdness of Christopher Walken truly knows no bounds. The most normal explanation I have for this album cover is that, during the photo-shoot, Walken insisted on impersonating a vampire, stalking the hallways of the hotel they were in. The photographer, having nowhere near the stones to tell Walken what to do, let this happen and took the strangest photo of his career as a result. At worst, this was a candid photo of Walken mid acid-trip and, because of the consummate professional attitude of the actor, he still looks clean and presentable even on psychedelics. The true background of this album cover is this music video for the Fatboy Slim song “Weapon of Choice.” If any reader was intrigued by weird Walken on the album cover, this music video is a must watch because it is pretty much four minutes of the weirdness turned up about a hundred notches.

Best “Skrrt Skrrt” on Culture?

Answer: “What the Price” - Migos

The pivotal “skrrt skrrt” from Migos’ “Culture” is the one that comes in the chorus of the album’s best song, “What the Price.” The chorus is delivered by the duo of Takeoff and Quavo, with Takeoff rapping the initial lines and Quavo giving an auto-tuned response. The “skrrt skrrt” is delivered by Takeoff here, I think. I can’t say for certain but Takeoff does have the line leading up to the “skrrt skrrt,” then Quavo chimes in with a quick “goin’ up,” which leads me to believe that Takeoff says it. If this is true, it is far and away Takeoff’s best contribution to the album, followed by his verse on “Slippery.” The “skrrt skrrt” here sounds like it descended from the heavens. This is the Sistine Chapel of Migos hooks and Takeoff is an unlikely Michelangelo.  

Best Opening Line in Music History?

Answer: “Yeah” - Usher / “I Am Trying To Break Your Heart” - Wilco

Two very different answers to this one. My right brain is telling me Usher and my left brain is saying Wilco. After a series of Lil Jon’s trademark ad libs, “Yeah” opens with a clear and concise summary of the entire song when Usher sings, “In the club with the homies!” No more words need to be said. Everyone listening to that first line is currently in the club with the homies or wants to get their homies together and go to the club. Usher knew what this song was: a club banger. What better way to start a club banger than with a line that references clubs in a fun and inclusive way? The left brain says Wilco because the opening line to their now classic 2002 album “Yankee Hotel Foxtrot” is fantastic use of the English language. The line comes after a short acoustic intro and goes, “I am an American aquarium drinker/ I assassin down the avenue.” In eleven short words, singer Jeff Tweedy confuses and amazes in equal amounts. The words fit together perfectly in the melody and they paint a vivid picture of the singer going through a bad breakup. The line is also the first, and only, time I have heard assassin used as a verb and it is something I might start using.

Best Transition Between Verse and Chorus?

Answer: “Brandy” - Looking Glass

This might be the most specific category yet but the transition is undeniable. The song goes from sounding like a carnival to a mellow day at the beach in a second. Looking Glass thoroughly peaked with “Brandy” and it is, in large part, due to their transitions between chorus and verse.


Teddy Craven is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at edward.craven_jr@uconn.edu.