The Unspeakable Chilly Gonzales Review
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Rap and classical may be two different types of music, but they don’t have anything else in common, do they? They have different methods, different moods, and, of course, different audiences. But, believe it or not, they do have at least one thing in common: Chilly Gonzales.

In his ground-breaking (though some might prefer to call it “preposterous”) new album, The Unspeakable Chilly Gonzales, the eccentric producer/pianist/artist combines grand orchestral arrangements with rap lyrics to create a sound that’s completely and utterly unique. It’s a risky move—and the resulting album is definitely unsettling. After all, it feels completely out of place to hear an artist talking about various parts of the male anatomy while accompanied by an ensemble of strings and brass. At the same time, though, there’s something just a little bit naughty about it—something irreverent and rebellious—that makes it so much fun.

Gonzales infuses the album with his own quirky sense of humor. In a voice that might remind you of Weird Al, he offers up the typical trash talk, along with commentaries on sex drugs, limos, and gigs, as well as slippers, South Park, and takeout. His rhymes are witty and clever and delightfully tongue-in-cheek—but when you hear that first burst of drums and horns come bounding in on the first track, “Supervillain Music,” you’ll know that he’s not just messing around.

The Unspeakable Chilly Gonzales may seem like it’s just a joke—an idea so bizarre that Gonzales couldn’t possibly be serious—but the music will change your mind. From symphonic melodies to Latin rhythms, from sweet and melodic to bold and powerful, the musical arrangements are striking—and sometimes completely stunning. They’re dramatic and theatrical and absolutely grand.

On the track “Who Wants to Hear This,” Gonzales contemplates the strange style of the album. He’s clearly well aware that it’s more than just a little bit crazy—and he wonders whether anyone will anyone will listen, or if he’s “way too whack to even download.” But, in the end, in his closing track, he decides that maybe it’s best to simply “Shut up and Play the Piano.” And I agree—because while his orchestral rap stylings definitely aren’t the norm, they sure are a whole lot of irreverent fun.

The Unspeakable Chilly Gonzales is definitely a novelty—but it isn’t the kind of novelty that quickly wears out its welcome. It’s the kind that you can enjoy through the entire album, marveling at the music, the humor, the sheer insanity of it all. And you might even find yourself going back to listen again, when the mood for something completely different strikes.

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