My kids don’t generally like the same music as me, and that’s okay. Hell, that’s how it’s supposed to be! I can’t imagine my mother relished driving me around town to the steady aural diet of Dead Milkmen and Anthrax that nourished me in my formative years, but as a parent sometimes you just have to take that hit.
This doesn’t mean I don’t share my passions with my brood, and, as a guy whose friends routinely release songs about Pokémon and My Little Pony, I know I’m lucky to regularly find tunes that we all enjoy. Still, there are times when my choice of a drive-time soundtrack is inappropriate or just plain unappealing to the kids. That’s why I found the latest Rockabye Baby! collection so intriguing.
The music of The Clash touches on themes like the destructive effects of unfettered consumerism, the high human cost of war, the oppression of the working class and the hard-fought triumph of the outcast – fascinating musical storytelling for me, but not so much for, say, my five-year-old. Rockabye Baby! side-steps this by rearranging a dozen of The Clash’s finest into lullaby-style instrumentals.
Kicking off with the upbeat heartbreak of “Should I Stay or Should I Go” and closing with a damn-near chipper take on “Straight to Hell,” Lullaby Renditions of The Clash hits all the high notes of a greatest hits comp. “Train in Vain,” “Rudie Can’t Fail” and “This is Radio Clash” join “London Calling” and “Rock the Casbah” in a veritable flurry of bells, wood blocks and xylophones.
While the limited instrumentation can get a little predictable and many of the band’s more delicate deep cuts would’ve perfectly translated to its chirpy sound – the lack of “Washington Bullets” is almost criminal – Lullaby Renditions of The Clash has an infectious pop sensibility that can simultaneously please three generations of listeners. And with liner notes that include fun Clash-inspired games and snacks, it’s a solid addition to your kid-friendly musical arsenal.
Review material provided by: Shorefire Media