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Gnarls Barkley - St. Elsewhere

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St. Elsewhere

Gnarls Barkley

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Who is Gnarls Barkley, and how did he ascend to the top of the British charts with a song that brings an eerie clarity to the cloud of mental illness? (Hint: It wasn't just the fact that Britain began factoring download data into its chart equations.) If St. Elsewhere sounds like one of the best rap-based pop productions since the second Gorillaz album, then look no further than the common link, producer Danger Mouse. And if the vocal performances are twisted with the type of unbalanced wisdom not seen in pop music since Sly Stone (or at least OutKast), credit Cee-Lo Green, the former Goodie Mob seer/sage/freak. A pop album straight through, St. Elsewhere is as good as Danger Mouse's two earlier landmarks (Gorillaz's Demon Days and Danger Doom's The Mouse and the Mask), but not because of any inherent similarities in the three records. The reasons for greatness here include DM's uncommon facility for writing (or sampling) simple hooks that stick, his creation of productions that entertain but don't detract from the main action, and his ability to coax a parade of enticing vocal performances from Green. The hit "Crazy" and the title track are perfect examples. Over detached backings, Green croons, growls, scats, and generally delivers fine neo-soul vocals while Danger Mouse blankets the tracks with choruses of disembodied harmonies and a well-placed string section or crackling organ to conjure an appropriately minor chord atmosphere. The focus on instability doesn't end there -- paranoia, suicidal tendencies, and multiple personalities are all in the cards, and there's also "Necromancer": "She was cool when I met her, but I think I like her better dead." Then, just to make sure listeners understand this is a concept album and not a message from a mind playing tricks on itself, they drop "The Boogie Monster" (although even the lyrics here can give pause: "I used to wonder why he looked familiar, and then I realized it was a mirror"). With the help of Danger Mouse's platinum ear and intricate vocal productions, Green is revealed as a top-notch post-millennial soul singer. Even when he's floating another mass of wise, serene gibberish, DM simply drops another production trick to keep things tight. Much like DJ Shadow's Private Press, Danger Mouse relies on samples from the downcast end of obscure '60s pop -- prog, psych, and Italian soundtrack music (his most valuable lieutenant here, Daniele Luppi, has the requisite Italian connection). Although Gnarls Barkley topping the charts was a slight fluke, the excellence of St. Elsewhere could have been seen coming a mile away.
© John Bush /TiVo

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St. Elsewhere

Gnarls Barkley

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1
Go-Go Gadget Gospel
00:02:19

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Ced Keyz International, Piano - Nicolas Flagello, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

2
Crazy - album version
00:02:57

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Gian Piero Reverberi, Writer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Ced Keys International, Piano - Gian Franco Reverberi, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

3
St. Elsewhere
00:02:30

David Piltch, Bass Guitar - Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Daniele Luppi, Arranger, Organ, Synth Bass - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Barry Clarke, Writer - Celia Humphris, Writer - Stephen Brown, Writer - David Costa, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

4
Gone Daddy Gone
00:02:28

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Bass Guitar, Electric Guitar, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Gordon Gano, Writer - WILLIE DIXON, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Dr. President, Keyboards

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

5
Smiley Faces
00:03:05

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer, Music - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Dr. President, Bass Guitar, Electric Guitar, Organ - Mark "Exit" Goodchild, Additional Engineer - Menta malone, Backing Vocals - Tomika Walden, Backing Vocals

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

6
The Boogie Monster
00:02:50

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Armando Trovaioli, Writer - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Dr. President, Bass Guitar - Angelo Francesco Lavagnino, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

7
Feng Shui
00:01:26

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Mark "Exit" Goodchild, Additional Engineer - Nino Nardini, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

8
Just a Thought
00:03:42

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Composer, Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Daniele Luppi, Arranger, Synth Bass, Moog - Cee Lo Green, Composer, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Eddie Reyes, Acoustic Guitar - K. Peek, Writer - Kevin Peek, Composer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

9
Transformer
00:02:17

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Mark "Exit" Goodchild, Additional Engineer - Marlene Moore, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

10
Who Cares?
00:02:27

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Daniele Luppi, Arranger, Organ, Synthesizer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Keith Mansfield, Writer - Chris Tedesco, Trumpet

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

11
On Line
00:01:49

David Piltch, Bass Guitar - Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Daniele Luppi, Arranger, Mini Moog - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Eric Bobo, Drums

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

12
Necromancer
00:02:57

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer, Music - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Daniele Luppi, Arranger, Organ - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Ced Keys International, Synthesizer - Dr. President, Electric Guitar

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

13
Storm Coming
00:03:08

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Daniele Luppi, Orchestra Leader - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Chris Tedesco, Trumpet

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

14
The Last Time
00:03:25

Cee-Lo Green, Vocals - Ben H. Allen, Mixing Engineer, Audio Recording Engineer - Gnarls Barkley, MainArtist - Danger Mouse , Producer, Writer, Mixing Engineer - Kennie Takahashi, Mixing Engineer - Cee Lo Green, Writer - Mike Lazer, Mastering Engineer - Ian Langley, Writer

© 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd ℗ 2006 Gnarls Barkley under exclusive license to Warner Music UK Ltd.

Album Description

Who is Gnarls Barkley, and how did he ascend to the top of the British charts with a song that brings an eerie clarity to the cloud of mental illness? (Hint: It wasn't just the fact that Britain began factoring download data into its chart equations.) If St. Elsewhere sounds like one of the best rap-based pop productions since the second Gorillaz album, then look no further than the common link, producer Danger Mouse. And if the vocal performances are twisted with the type of unbalanced wisdom not seen in pop music since Sly Stone (or at least OutKast), credit Cee-Lo Green, the former Goodie Mob seer/sage/freak. A pop album straight through, St. Elsewhere is as good as Danger Mouse's two earlier landmarks (Gorillaz's Demon Days and Danger Doom's The Mouse and the Mask), but not because of any inherent similarities in the three records. The reasons for greatness here include DM's uncommon facility for writing (or sampling) simple hooks that stick, his creation of productions that entertain but don't detract from the main action, and his ability to coax a parade of enticing vocal performances from Green. The hit "Crazy" and the title track are perfect examples. Over detached backings, Green croons, growls, scats, and generally delivers fine neo-soul vocals while Danger Mouse blankets the tracks with choruses of disembodied harmonies and a well-placed string section or crackling organ to conjure an appropriately minor chord atmosphere. The focus on instability doesn't end there -- paranoia, suicidal tendencies, and multiple personalities are all in the cards, and there's also "Necromancer": "She was cool when I met her, but I think I like her better dead." Then, just to make sure listeners understand this is a concept album and not a message from a mind playing tricks on itself, they drop "The Boogie Monster" (although even the lyrics here can give pause: "I used to wonder why he looked familiar, and then I realized it was a mirror"). With the help of Danger Mouse's platinum ear and intricate vocal productions, Green is revealed as a top-notch post-millennial soul singer. Even when he's floating another mass of wise, serene gibberish, DM simply drops another production trick to keep things tight. Much like DJ Shadow's Private Press, Danger Mouse relies on samples from the downcast end of obscure '60s pop -- prog, psych, and Italian soundtrack music (his most valuable lieutenant here, Daniele Luppi, has the requisite Italian connection). Although Gnarls Barkley topping the charts was a slight fluke, the excellence of St. Elsewhere could have been seen coming a mile away.
© John Bush /TiVo

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