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Why Does the Sun Shine / Jessica / Whirlpool / Spy
They Might Be Giants
Why Does the Sun Shine / Jessica / Whirlpool / Spy
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Children's Music
 
  •  Track Listings (4) - Disc #1

Learned from a 1959 children's educational record, the title track of the four-song Why Does The Sun Shine? is a little science lesson that's (literally) textbook TMBG--half ridiculously geeky, half ridiculously tuneful, a...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: They Might Be Giants
Title: Why Does the Sun Shine / Jessica / Whirlpool / Spy
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Elektra / Ada
Original Release Date: 9/14/1993
Release Date: 9/14/1993
Album Type: Single
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock, Children's Music
Style: Sing-A-Longs
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 075596627221

Synopsis

Amazon.com
Learned from a 1959 children's educational record, the title track of the four-song Why Does The Sun Shine? is a little science lesson that's (literally) textbook TMBG--half ridiculously geeky, half ridiculously tuneful, and a longtime favorite of their live sets in a much more rocked-up version. It's backed up by well-intentioned but fairly pointless covers of the Allman Brothers' archetypal Southern-rock instrumental "Jessica" and the Meat Puppets' "Whirlpool" (arranged around twin saxes), and an original called "Spy" that the band claims is its "homage to secret agent themes and free improvisation," but has more to do with the onstage mayhem it provides, with John Linnell "conducting" the whole band in single-note blasts. --Douglas Wolk

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CD Reviews

Much as it pains me --
J. T. Nite | Mesa, AZ USA | 08/14/2000
(2 out of 5 stars)

"It pains me to not recommend any TMBG album, but I have to disagree with consensus on this one. I liked this version of "Why does the sun shine?" unti I heard the faster, more rocked out version on "Severe Tire Damage." I liked the sparsely instrumented "Whirlpool," until I heard the 10-times better original. "Jessica" is fine, but not a compelling reason to buy an album. "Spy" is on John Henry, identical except for the improv at the end.I would only recommend this to those who want everything TMBG's ever done. Kinda bugs me that this one is still available, but the GREAT EP's for "The Guitar" and "Istanbul" are not to be had."
Does for astronomy what Potsie did for anatomy
Kenton Larsen | Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada | 01/26/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)

"It worked for Potsie on Happy Days.You remember the episode: Potsie, unable to memorize anatomical terms for a school test, writes a song called "Pump Your Blood" and subsequently passes the test with flying colors."Why Does the Sun Shine?", the title song from this EP, does for astronomy what "Pump Your Blood" did for anatomy. Sample: "The sun is a mass of incandescent gas/A gigantic nuclear furnace/Where hydrogen is built into helium at a temperature of millions of degrees." Everyone!The glockenspiel-driven ditty is actually from a 1959 educational recording called Space Songs, and the Giants play it deadpan. The result is perhaps the most hilarious or annoying song of the band's catalogue, depending on your sense of humor.The disc also includes a peppy, instrumental rendition of the Allman Brothers' "Jessica" and an accordion-based version of the Meat Puppets' "Whirlpool".Ultimately, the EP is a fine between-albums stopgap, but it falls short of the band's insanely catchy originals.If you're in the market for something to drive folks nuts at parties, or you're the Potsie of the astronomy set, this one's for you."
4 original songs exclusive to this Mini-Album
S. R Robertson | Oh Henry? | 04/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"You only get these TMBG songs on this stand-alone single, and it's worth it. "The Sun Is A Mass Of Incandescant Gas" is a great semi-childish song that features that educational ego that they have only done previously with "Mammal". The remake of the Almond Brother's "Jessica" is decent, but the backdrop remake of the Meat Puppets' "Whirlpool" is great, done with echoing horns. The alternate version of "Spy" is, in my opinion, better than the version on "John Henry". Get a great single and learn about how the Sun is a mass of incandescent gas...at the same time."