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I Spent Money on This? Sunday, October 26, 2008

Posted by JB* in albums, I Spent Money On This?, JB*, music, Reasons why I was single, shitty music, Since no one reads this on the weekend, Things That May Suspend Your Man License.
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The rundown of lame discs I have owned takes us to the Lord this week. Get religion… after the jump.

The Album – The Benedictine Monks of Santo Domingo de Silos, “Chant”
The Year – 1995 (album released 1994)

The Story
Somehow, a disc of Benedictine Monks singing centuries old prayers climbed the Billboard Charts to as high as number three and sold three million copies in the United States. Now, maybe the high chart ranking can be attributed to a slow period of new releases – after all, Milla Jovovich, while hot, didn’t exactly stir up the scene with “The Divine Comedy” – despite boobs on the cover – and not even yours truly had gotten on board with Our Lady Peace’s debut, “Naveed”. Plus, the world was still four months naive of Hootie & The Blowfish.

Yet the members of the order went on the road, appearing all over the world (and NBC) in support of the album, ultimately selling six million copies. One of which, sadly, was to me, about a year after the release. While some people go off to college and dabble in drugs or lesbian sex, I, evidently, dabbled in religion.

The Good
Rhythmic and easy to listen to this probably was a decent album to have to study to as I started college – consistent, not overly loud or with spikes of crashing music.

See – a nice relaxing sound after a stressful day… or a roommate could us it as background music to go with the incense to cover the smell of the joints he is lighting up. Religious music to go with the religious paraphernalia, right?

As an added bonus, the Benedictine Monks’ cut likely ended up feeding orphans in Bolivia… or adding another layer of shiny gold covered tin to the Vatican. Either way, I get karma points for it, right?

The Bad
For starters, the whole thing is in Latin. My Latin is terrible. For all I knew at the time (pre-Google, minimal Yahoo, remember), these Spanish Monks were war criminals in hiding singing about lima beans and efficient trains.

Secondly, it was a disc of religious chants. As an eighteen year old… probably not the thing to have eminating from your dorm room to woo new friends and women.

Worst of all, the popularity of the album led to two more discs, a Christmas release, and parodies such as pop songs set in religious-chant style (including the so-wrong-it-is-funny “Do You Think I’m Sexy” and “Losing My Religion”) and a kid’s book/disc combo I actually feel compelled to buy now called “Grunt“.

Verdict
We’ll give this one a solid 4-out of-5 “What the Hell?” marks… an ill-formed decision which probably never made much sense.

Join me next week as I continue to tally the thousands of dollars spent on ill-fated purchases of music, probably with one a little more complex this open-and-shut case. And don’t tell my mother, lest she want me to pay her back.

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Comments»

1. Greek McPapadopoulos - Sunday, October 26, 2008

Ah, NOW that reference from “The Critic” makes sense.

2. Bill - Monday, October 27, 2008

I was never aware of the parodies. I’m going to have to search those out as they sound great.

Am I wrong in recalling there was a release of some of these chants with techno beats behind them? I could have sworn there was – unless I just dreamed it up from being lulled into sleep by the dulcet tones of the Benedictines.

3. Jerkwheat - Monday, October 27, 2008

Bill, I think you are right – I seem to recall some techno-monk action as well.

I remember the Chant phenomenon well and I’m positive that every genre possible tried to get in on the act.

4. JB* - Monday, October 27, 2008

I heard a couple of them (or maybe one, continuously) while in the UK last summer/fall, eminating from the dance club across the street.

Of course, they also played The Price is Right theme song over a Techno Beat. And the Baywatch theme song, a lot.

Now I have a YouTube goal.

5. Mrs_JB* - Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I think you might want to re-consider that childrens book purchase – as your son is here, holding a train, begging “let me go! let me go!” while I play this YouTube video.
And while you were dabbling in religion, it seems that I was a bit more mainstream in experimenting.


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