What does Soloing Over Alanis Morissette sound like you may ask? Well, the question can be answered quite easily by reading this project's moniker. Apparently, it's a teen from the Chicago suburbs named Dave Gerhard and he's created one of the more pleasurable and certainly one of the weirdest WTFs I have come across.
I'm not necessarily sure how important my role is here since you can probably fill in the blanks yourself, but Gerhard takes a couple of Alanis's biggest hits and improvises guitar solos over them. To his credit you can tell he is actually paying attention to the songs and forming his improvisations around them--it's not a lame exercise in irony. "You Oughta Know" is a great choice for the opener because Alanis's relentlessly hilarious histrionics put the whole track in a state of constant climax, making the whole duration perfect soil for some burning, cathartic guitar leads. As a personal bonus this tape is the first time I've heard Alanis say "fuck" cause I'd only heard her music (censored) on the radio or in stores or whatever. I really like on the third track, where "Ironic" is the source material, when Gerhard occasionally sings along, murmuring "his very pretty wife" (despite the actual lyrics being "his beautiful wife"). I think singing along with slightly incorrect lyrics is one of the things can be called a universal human experience; relating to the tape is part or maybe most of the fun. The last track "SOAM Gets HEALTHY!" doubles the weird factor by adding some of HEALTH's bootyshaking into the soloing over "Thank You" (which is a weird enough song in its own right, or at least the music video is...) The result is some sort of inbred Alanis Morissette rave mix, somehow both sedate and rabid, even more bizarre than the Alan Jackson club remix cassingle I picked up at Goodwill last year.
Maybe it's because I grew up as one of those kids sitting in my room soloing over other people's songs but I enjoy jamming this a lot more than I thought was rationally possible. I can't explain why but it does me good to know some kid is out there releasing tapes of himself soloing over Alanis Morissette. Here's to hoping the next release has Gerhard soloing over Wesley Willis's song "Alanis Morissette". Worth checking out if it at all sounds interesting to you. And also props to the young label Speed Tapes for throwing their weight behind strange pleasures such as this.