Sparks “Exotic Creatures of the Deep”

by Chris Devonshire-Ellis

December 8th, 2008

Sparks are two brothers, Ron & Russell Mael, who are from LA and have had a 30 year career in avant garde pop music, with occasional hit records. Their sound is rather unique, and recently brings together vaudeville, classical music, electronic music and just some general off the wall weirdness. Their lyrics, one of the strongest parts of their charm, are always biting, witty but with undertones of melancholy and a desire to be loved. This, their latest CD, is a very odd collection of new songs indeed. While not for everyone, each seperate song is a story in itself, often telling strange tales of lust, romance and breakups. My favorite tracks: "Let The Monkey Drive" and "Strange Animal" (whose chorus when I first heard it seemed to repeat "The Wall Street Journal" -it’s actually "What a Strange Animal"). Weird pop music at its finest. Their website:, downloads also at