Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Caught On Tape: "Weird Al" Yankovic - 'Smells Like Nirvana'

"It's hard to bargle nawdle zouss??? With all these marbles in my mouth"

Though I never felt it to be one of Weird Al's greatest song parodies, 'Smells Like Nirvana' remains one of my all-time favorite music videos from the mock-rocker. While the song itself may focus on the premise that Nirvana's lyrics in 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' were a bit hard to decipher (refer back to opening quote), the video picks up on a whole slew of nuances from the original. Part of what makes the video work so well is that it so true to the original. From the spotlight in the face, all the way to the kid running off with the high-hat symbol towards the end, this video shows a strong attention to detail. To a casual viewer, the setting, colors, and filming techniques are often inseparable from the formula used for the Nirvana video. One of the details that I find particularly amusing is the bass player's ability to bounce around awkwardly like Krist Novoselic.

"Weird Al" successfully takes on Kurt Cobain's angst-ridden persona as the viewer is witnessed to a bevy of Leslie Nielsen -grade sight gags. Farm animals make their appearances, and gargled water, kazoos and a janitor on tuba carry out parts of the solo. The video triumphantly concludes with an all out mosh pit of long-haired, flannel-ized teenagers losing body parts.

As amusing as I find this video, it's still impossible to beat a classic. Watch both, and try to find as many parodies as possible. Then, check to see if you caught as many as these Wikipedia editors.

Kurt Cobain apparently loved it... and now you can too.

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