The Perfect Quirk

Secret Agent 23 Skidoo

Underground Playground Records, 2014

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


Secret Agent 23 Skidoo plays the sort of music that lyrically is directed towards children, but musically fits any age. Though at the core you might call this garage rock, it intertwines reggae, blues, Motown sounds, hip-hop and rock into a party album with a worthwhile message. The message? Well, Secret Agent 23 Skidoo wants everyone to embrace their inner quirkiness instead of labeling them as flaws. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

To get his message across, many guest vocalists are on hand for this disc. And that, combined with the constant genre skipping, makes this almost sound like a various artists album. Fittingly, the first song “You're It” starts out with the sounds of kids on a playground before bursting into Afro-pop meets reggae meets hip-hop playfulness. “Unwind” follows and brings in the Motown spirit, and this leads right into the polka, gypsy, carnival hybrid feeling of “Imaginary Friend.” A couple guest vocalists, MC fireworks (Secret Agent 23 Skidoo's daughter) and Adam Strange, are brought in on “Third Pointed Back,” and Strange's adult voice complements the higher pitched sounds of MC Fireworks well. At the halfway point, Recess Monkey's Jack Forman provides a voiceover while a group of kids provide the chorus on the almost club friendly dance track "Pillowfort Pillowfight."

The second half starts out strong with the bluesy harmonicas of “PJs All Day” and continues on with the funky grooves of “Caught In The Screen.” MC Fireworks makes her best appearance on the beat driven “Time Machine,” where the relaxing reggae vibe sounds both casual and fun. The album closes on the horn heavy “Nightlight,” where sweet female vocals are mixed in to deliver a soothing exit.

Call it family music, kiddie rock or any other sort of combination of innocuous, uplifting music with a message, the bottom line is that Secret Agent 23 Skidoo is a supremely talented musician who offers something for everyone.

Rating: B

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2014 Tom Haugen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Underground Playground Records, and is used for informational purposes only.