15 Songs, 33 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

You-can’t-stop-rock-and-roll narratives are older than the form itself – think of John Lee Hooker’s “Boogie Chillen.” Tenacious D’s cinematic quest in The Pick of Destiny, however fictitious and knowingly hilarious about the semi-ineptitude of Jack Black and Kyle Gass, does ring true about small-town kids’ insistence on claiming a piece of the music’s magic. Drawing on Rush’s 2112 and Styx’s Kilroy Was Here for thematic cues and everything from Heart to Eddie Vedder for music, the soundtrack album is loving parody — tough to pull off except for true believers like Black and Gass. It also helps that they’re smart enough to hire Meat Loaf to play Black’s religious, anti-rock father, and to realize that the visual joke is only half the appeal: Dude’s vocal cameo on “Kickapoo” is one of Pick’s seemingly out-of-nowhere highlights. School of Rock, indeed.

EDITORS’ NOTES

You-can’t-stop-rock-and-roll narratives are older than the form itself – think of John Lee Hooker’s “Boogie Chillen.” Tenacious D’s cinematic quest in The Pick of Destiny, however fictitious and knowingly hilarious about the semi-ineptitude of Jack Black and Kyle Gass, does ring true about small-town kids’ insistence on claiming a piece of the music’s magic. Drawing on Rush’s 2112 and Styx’s Kilroy Was Here for thematic cues and everything from Heart to Eddie Vedder for music, the soundtrack album is loving parody — tough to pull off except for true believers like Black and Gass. It also helps that they’re smart enough to hire Meat Loaf to play Black’s religious, anti-rock father, and to realize that the visual joke is only half the appeal: Dude’s vocal cameo on “Kickapoo” is one of Pick’s seemingly out-of-nowhere highlights. School of Rock, indeed.

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