Dennis Bagwell – A Random Litter of Thought (CD)

I thought this album had an introduction that was spoken word, but then would go into something that was perhaps a little musical. That is not the case with “A Random Litter of Thought”. What Dennis Bagwell does on this album is essentially what all perzine creators do with their zines. The minor amount of instrumentation that works as the backdrop for tracks on “A Random Litter of Thought” is the equivalent of a picture or a collage as background. The use of rhyming during tracks like “Does God Have E-Mail?” starts to grate on listeners’ ears after about a minute and a half. The shortness of some of these thoughts are much appreciated; something needs to break up the similar-sounding tracks here. Perhaps the most interesting chunks of dialogue during “A Random Litter of Thought” have to come during the movie quotes during tracks like “A Table For Two …in Hell”.

The fact that a majority of the thoughts on this album use the same rhyme structure is another strike for Dennis Bagwell. I understand the necessity for creating a theme, but when someone recreates the same thing almost thirty times during a disc, individuals cannot be expected to stick with the program. The fact that these are not political discussions per se also makes individuals weary of listening to nearly an hour of these aural poems. The fact that some of the writing is not really up to a Pynchon-like level (such as ”Turds smell bad, and people do too”, from “The World is a Toilet”) just makes it that much harder for individuals to stick with Bagwell throughout the entirety of this album. The one thing that could be done for future albums in this vein is to go and modify more of the vocals on these tracks. This means that individuals could make Bagwell’s vocals into their own instrument, as well as differentiating the material that is present on the album from each other.

Perhaps if Bagwell did the opposite of what the rappers do and put more in the way of musical tracks as a spacer between these vocal tracks, the same ennui listeners feel would be diminished considerably. There are slam poets and other barbershop rappers that do what Bagwell does on “A Random Litter of Thought” much better than Bagwell could ever do. Skip this album.

Top Tracks: None

Rating: 2.5/10

Dennis Bagwell – A Random Litter of Thought / 2006 Batteryface / 29 Tracks / http://www.poetrypoem.com/dennisbagwell / http://www.batteryface.com / Reviewed 02 August 2006

[JMcQ]

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