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Cosmic Thing Import

4.5 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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58th Annual GRAMMY Awards
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 29 1989)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Reprise
  • ASIN: B000002LGY
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews
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1. Cosmic Thing
2. Dry County
3. Deadbeat Club
4. Love Shack
5. Junebug
6. Roam
7. Bushfire
8. Channel Z
9. Topaz
10. Follow Your Bliss

Product Description

Product Description

Love Shack; Roam, and Deadbeat Club highlight this 1989 smash!

Nirvana made a lot of things irrelevant when Nevermind was released in 1991, and among the most unfortunate casualties caught inside the blast radius were the B-52's. Just two years previously they had released their very first mainstream breakthrough album, Cosmic Thing. This album was featherweight, sun- kissed, playfully pansexual and, most importantly, danceable. Tracks like "Love Shack" and "Roam" reminded us there could be fun without responsibility. Alternately kitschy and lazy (some still insist that "Deadbeat Club" was a slacker anthem long before Beck's "Loser"), Cosmic Thing took the B-52's signature Trekkie-camp sensibility and slowed it down just enough to click on MTV and portable radio wonderfully. And let's be honest, anyway: would you rather road-trip to Kurt's sad refrain of "Well, whatever, nevermind" or Fred Schneider belting out "The whole shack shimmies!!" at the top of his lungs? (On second thought, don't answer that.) --Todd Levin

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
If "The B-52's" and "Wild Planet" were the keg parties, then "Cosmic Thing" is the 10-year college reunion: Great to see old friends again, but everyone's a grown-up now and conducts themselves with a better sense of decorum.

That's not to say "Cosmic Thing" isn't a good time, it's just not as weird, wild and wonderful as the music The B's were making at the start of the decade.

Wisely, the band chose the title track to kick off the album. A great party-sounding track, "Cosmic Thing" is an infectious upbeat groove where the drummer sounds like he's doing his thing using three sets of drumsticks. I think I detected a zither on this song as well. For sheer exuberance, this one surpasses even "Love Shack".

"Dry County" is a little more laid-back and reminds me a little of Scissor Sisters. The harmonies of Kate and Cindy really shine on this one as they back up Fred, who seems mellow here, fitting the song's lyrics.

There is nothing extraordinary musically about "Deadbeat Club", but the vocals make this one as good as it is. As the song opens, Cindy sounds like she's singing with a great big smile on her face. Kate soon joins her and their voices together can lift anyone's spirits.

The biggest hit the B's ever had was "Love Shack" (#3 on Billboard). Anyone who hasn't heard this song must have been living in a cave for the past 20 years. As far as party tunes go, "Shack" is to Gen X what "Louie, Louie" was to Baby Boomers. The song was featured in a memorable "Queer as Folk" sequence in 2002, and contains Cindy Wilson's famous line "Tin roof...RUSTED". The version that appears here is slightly longer than the radio edit. Though not my favorite song of theirs by a long shot, I can understand it's universal appeal.
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Format: Audio CD
"Love Shack" is the one song from this album that you probably can name without any hesitation. That's because to this day it's overplayed -- how many flashback lunch hours, etc., belt out this tune daily? Too many, considering that there are other great B-52 tunes that are hardly obscure ("Roam" from this album, "Rock Lobster", "Planet Claire", and "Private Idaho" from previous ones) that could be played.
But I digress . . . that "Love Shack" is overplayed is hardly an indictment of this album. Though not groundbreaking or history-changing, this album definitely is a must-own. Why? Simply because of the fun factor! It's a delightfully fun album from start to finish.
"Love Shack", if you manage to avoid the iterations on the radio dulling its impact, is a contagious party tune, as is "Roam" (which I prefer just because it hasn't been played to death). Of the remaining album, I also really like "Deadbeat Club" (a slacker anthem), "Junebug", and "Bushfire" -- all very up-tempo, fun songs.
As a fan of the B-52s, I can't say they've ever put anything that wasn't good. This is probably their second-best album behind their self-titled effort. It's fun, breezy, and something any serious music fan should have in their collection as a result.
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Format: Audio CD
It is doubtful that any music reviewer with any merit could discount the importance that the B-52's had on the late 1980's music landscape. However, it is also important to note that their importance and relevance started in the late 1970's, but they were then an underground group out of Athens, Georgia and not the mainstream dance group they became with the release of "Cosmic Thing".
"Cosmic Thing", the album, is quite possibly PERFECT. Eschewing their previous self produced music, the B-52's took a chance on a cutting edge producer by the name of Don Was (now he is as well known in music circles as anyone could be). Was, formerly of the group: Was Not Was helped the 52's weave an album on a monumental scale!
There is, quite honestly, not a single song on this album that is not dynamite. The first released and first to rocket up the charts was "Channel Z". This was a song about the sad state of affairs in America, though its meaning was undoubtedly lost to most who just loved its awesome dance beat. Next released is questionable, since just about all the songs took over the top ten songs over the course of the year. "Love Shack", "Cosmic Thing", "Roam" (now ubiquitous as the theme for a brand of anti alergy medicine), "Deadbeat Club", "Bushfire", "June Bug" (as Cicadaes are known in the Southern U.S.), "Topaz", and "Follow your Bliss" were all hits at one point or another.
If you were a dance club owner in 1989, you were certainly playing the B-52's or you didn't have your finger on the pulse of America's youth.
Although the B-52's are far less relevant to today's youth, they are still out there entertaining millions and making sure that we all have something to dance to and about.
Absolutely an unbelievably fantastic album!
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Format: Audio CD
The B-52's began life as a self-described "tacky little dance band" out of 1970s Athens, Georgia--and they sounded like musical refugees from a Twilight Zone episode that Rod Serling thought better of. But the band touched a techno-nerve, and before too long they had a record deal and a cult single ("Rock Lobster") that actually made the charts. But for all their fame, The B-52's very glitchy sound never had much in the way of airplay, much less big-time sales... until the release of COSMIC THING.
COSMIC THING spawned two major singles. The first one to hit--and the one that remains most durable--is "Love Shack," a truly bizarre but extremely infectious mix of funky rhythm and catchy melody dominated by Fred Schneider's ultra-silly, ultra-clever pseudo-rap--the song was and is a tremendous amount of fun, and while it lacks the truly weird edge of earlier B-52's cuts it remains one of the best dance party cuts I've ever come across, something that will get you on your feet faster than you can say "Bang Bang." The second hit, "Roam," was more specifically pop--but pop with a B-52's twist: a covertly sexy lyric and Cindy Wilson and Kate Pierson blasting out unexpected harmonies from beneath their dueling beehive hairdos.
But COSMIC THING has more to offer than just these two cuts: everything here is extremely well done. The downbeat "Dry Country" has a seductive swing to it; "Deadbeat Club" is super smooth; "Topaz" is a remarkable little thing, sweet and sour all at once; and the largely non-vocal "Follow Your Bliss" wraps up the set on an unexpected but effective note.
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