CD Review of The Tale of Season 4 and the Oceanic Six by Previously on Lost
Recommended if you like
Novelty records based on TV shows
Label
independent release
Previously on Lost:
The Tale of Season 4
and the Oceanic Six

Reviewed by Jim Washington

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Available for order through .

F
irst off, an admission: we music writers do not always know everything about every band in the world right off the top of our heads. When we write authoritatively that a certain album is a band’s tenth, not counting the EP Live in Tulsa, or that the songs reflect the trauma of the lead singer’s recent bout of dropsy, we’ve done some research. Often it’s no more than reading the press releases that sometimes accompany a review copy of a CD.

Ironically, I almost immediately misplaced the release that came with a little disc by an outfit calling themselves Previously on Lost. I still have the paper lotus flower that also came with it, but that’s not terribly informative. I’m not too worried, however, because this is a pretty straightforwardly uncomplicated recording. Some friends who are fans of the show “Lost” got together, possibly in a garage or basement, and recorded some charmingly amusing tunes on what may or may not be a Yamaha home organ.

The songs are based on 12 episodes of the show’s fourth season, as the CD’s title makes pretty clear (again, I figured this out for myself), plus a live 13th track recorded at what sounds like a lively viewing party for the season finale. Quality-wise, the music here is super low-fidelity. Production values are pretty much nonexistent. The music and singing is something like the Chipmunks doing “South Pacific.” The lyrics, and the “let’s put on a show” spirit of the enterprise are pure entertainment, however.

It probably goes without saying that anyone who doesn’t watch the show is not the intended audience here. But “Lost” fans will certainly revel in songs such as “The Ballad of Sayid Jarrah,” which chronicles the journey of everyone’s favorite Iraqi torture expert from breakdancer to assassin, or “Male Role Model,” in which island child Aaron (son of Claire, grandson of mysterious doctor dude in the cabin) considers which guy on the island he should take after. “Can I trust a man who can’t decide about his beard,” the child thinks of Jack. “Or is always on the verge of tears, just like me?”

“Be My Constant” is another highlight, a love song between Penny and Desmond as they become unstuck in time. The bouncy “BFF” and the live finale showcase the band’s sense of fun, with interjections and crowd interaction. Obviously obsessive fans, they even bring up a few good plot points – like, why didn’t Jin try to jump off the freighter before it exploded instead of just gazing at the departing helicopter and “looking awesome?”

No one is taking this for anything other than what it is – a goof. But it’s a highly listenable goof, at least for the moment. Novelty records, of course, have a short shelf life. When’s the last time you pulled out your copy of “Pac Man Fever”?

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