‘In Tents’ is the new children’s CD by the band Recess Monkey that features 16 tracks. Or maybe I should say it’s their new album that features 16 tracks of circus music that kids would like. This CD is one of the odder albums I’ve listened to, as well as the booklet inside the case. Right from the start of the first song, “In Tents” sets the mood and tempo of the album. This song has a upbeat, sugary high level of energy, with the circus theme. All the songs have titles that would relate in one way or another to being at a circus, “Popcorn”, “Bouncy House”, and “Human Cannonball” to name a few.
I liked the circus theme to the album, it makes the songs different, a little fun, and it does feel like I’m at a circus listening to the songs. The lyrics are fun and at times made me laugh, especially with the song “Human Cannonball”. Though it’s not the lyrics, the beats, or the theme that had me not liking ‘In Tents’. What took away most of my enjoyment from the songs was how the songs where being sung and the format of the songs. As I listened to the CD, a lot of the time it didn’t sound as if the songs where being sung but rather had this talking down to sound. It’s that way when adults talk to kids that are on the edge of understand the adult but still young enough where the adult thinks the kid has to be told in a simple way. This is what I was hearing in most of the songs and it got on my nerves.
As for the formatting of the songs, most are done where the lyrics repeat way too much. This repetitive nature of the lyrics does however work for kids, and since this is a children’s CD I would figure that the kids will like this format. All it did for me was get on my nerves and made me want to skip to the next song. Aside from that little setback, there are some sounds being used in the instrumental portions that I really enjoyed. My favorite was with “Human Cannonball” with the bopping sound that’s used. Most of the songs have a well played beat and rhythm to them and I think if the vocals had a more rock sound to them I would have enjoyed ‘In Tents’ a whole lot more.