Richard Cheese
"Aperitif For Destruction"

(Surfdog Records 2005)Richard Cheese - Aperitif For Destruction

Chances are, by this point, that you might have already caught a glimpse of Richard Cheese performing on television or seen a link to one of his songs online as they circulated on blogs and by word of mouth. Comedian Mark Jonathan Davis, under the guise of Richard Cheese, did something any one could have done: he created a boring, un-hip Rat Pack-type guy that sings pop songs (usually the racier ones) in a lounge act style. His sixth album, "Aperitif For Destruction" covers all the hits and throws in some, if you will excuse the unintended pun, cheesy jokes to go with it.

Consider it a challenge to not laugh at 2 Live Crew's "Me So Horny" as Cheese transforms it into a tender ballad. Piano takes over the infamous guitar riff of Guns 'N' Roses' "Welcome To The Jungle" and transforms Alice In Chains' "Man In The Box" to a rhythmic samba number. Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know" becomes perky, horns add flare to the number while Metallica's "Enter Sandman" gets remade like the Chordettes' "Mr. Sandman." Cheese goes for easy laughs on tracks like Bell Biv Devoe's "Do Me" as a strung out joke, "We Are The World" where he changes "we are the children" to "keep Michael Jackson away from your children," a Phil Spector gun joke on "Been Caught Stealing," and an upbeat "duet" with a Stephen Hawking impression to Jackson and Paul McCartney's "The Girl is Mine."

Cheese is a one trick pony. "Aperitif For Destruction" does only one thing and that is what Cheese does. The album quickly becomes tedious and more amusing than laugh out loud funny. If nothing else, Davis sure is committed to the Cheese character. But a little less of those canned sound effects next time, eh, guys?


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