Sunday, January 2, 2011

Album Review: Road Trip Relief Squad - Happy Butt

Happy Butt - Cheeky Fun to Help Reiiave the Rigors of the Road
Album Title: Happy Butt
Artist: Road Trip Relief Squad
Rating: (3 stars)
Review: The idea for Road Trip Relief Squad came while band members Carol Heywood and Tina Albrecht made the long drive from a weekend conference at 100 Mile House, Canada, back home to Seattle, Washington. Anyone who has gone on a road trip knows that after a few hours of sitting in the car, certain parts of the body go numb. But when some dance music came on the radio and butts began moving, a workout idea was born!

The resulting album, Happy Butt, is a fun and often-hilarious 33 minutes of exercises drivers can do to make road trips less painful on the butt. The seven songs that make up Happy Butt guide the listener/exerciser through a mini-workout of the butt and abs.
The music is really nondescript, but the banter between Carol and Tina will bring about a lot of laughter, especially if the listener is a fan of the Delicious Dish sketches on Saturday Night Live. The two women have a delivery that can only be described as monotone.
The opening remarks on “Beach Bum” are a little unnecessary and might have been left to liner notes or an insert.
It is hard to imagine actually doing the exercises while driving without ending up in a tree. What the CD does manage to accomplish is making the listener laugh—and that keeps the listener, whether driver or passenger, awake and alert. That’s a good thing. It is hard not to laugh during songs like “Cowabunga Crunch” when Eric calls out “I gotta have more cowbell!”
“Cheeks and Salsa” works out the butt and the Road Trip Relief Squad introduces us to a new word for butt: your gluteus maximush. This is one of the more lively exercise tracks. It definitely will create a few Happy Butts bouncing around.

If the banter between the members of Road Trip Relief Squad doesn’t bring a smile to your face, the titles of the tracks just might. Besides “Cowabunga Crunch” there’s “Cheeks and Salsa,” “Lose The Fat Blues” and “Beach Bum!” The titles are more than a bit punny, but they are lighthearted, just like the banter. During “Beach Bums” Carol quips that Doctor Andrew Wild says that the exercises are “utterly simple” which gets followed up with the remark, “that means even cows can do it.” Cow sound effects follow, and then maybe a groan or two from the listeners.

“Chillin” is a jazzy tune that has Carol and Tina helping their listeners to relax and get rid of stress. The Road Trippers help to take listeners to their happy places when other drivers on the road are being annoying.

The album ends appropriately with a sing-along of Dale Evans’ classic “Happy Trails.” Dale Evans is the patron saint of the Happy Butt project. After that song ends, every part of your body should be awake and maybe the long drive will seem a little easier on mind and body.

+It is hard to imagine seasoned travelers getting their Happy Butt on, but the humor and music are definitely suitable for families making long trips, especially families that are looking to keep the kids away from DVD players and other gadgets, and coax them into doing something more interactive. Happy Butt is cheesy fun!

Road Trip Relief Squad may not give you a gym workout, but what they do give you is a break from the monotony of a long drive, and they put a smile on your face as well. After listening to Happy Butt, your butt should be happy and so should you.

It is hard to tell how much healthier you might be after doing the Happy Butt workout, but if you are feeling happier at the end, the CD has definitely done some good.

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