The Barrys serve up an enormous and unruly combo platter of geek punk, idiot blues and experimental pop on their 74-minute self-titled debut. But generous sonic portions of analog-enhanced hijinks is not what sets them apart from most Denver-based bands: Committed to revolutionizing rock and roll the way McDonald's revolutionized the hamburger, the entrepreneuring quintet also offers a franchising opportunity for all wannabe rock stars. "This is the light at the end of the bleak tunnel you call your life," proclaims the franchise agreement from Barry Corp. included in the group's disc: "No more silently crying in the shower. No more listening to Morrissey as you masturbate. No more anonymity -- just fame, loud guitars, sex and ludicrous profits!"
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Matching P.T. Barnum's business sense with the musical spirit of early Devo or Ween, this long-player shuffles its deck of jokers thoroughly between hands. Running the gamut from spoken-word metal ("Dave's Dilemma") to concussed hoedown ("I'd Piss on a Sparkplug"), the tunes traipse through a dose-inflected land of elves and monkeys, seashells and syringes. In the wig-tightening process, the band also manages to pull off a cockeyed lullaby in honor of "The Ole Pencil Vendor," a sour-smelling codger who's "showing his goodies for free." Uninhibited, profane, absurd and tons of hummable fun, The Barrys is a refreshing change of pace not only for the adventurous music it contains, but for the scam it so wholeheartedly embraces. (www.thebarrysmusic.com)