Apologetix: Minor League – and – Doves in Snakes’ Clothing

Nearly 25 years on, Christian music’s premier parody band have refined their process to perfection: Select the greatest mainstream pop hits of the ‘70’s and ‘80’s (occasionally, the ‘60’s and ‘90’s), perform note-perfect cover versions, and biblically renovate the words. On their two albums released this year, Apologetix once again do three things so very well. First, they uncannily reproduce some of the most technically proficient pop songs ever recorded. Second, they brilliantly recontextualize as many of the original words as possible while totally changing the overall meaning of the song. Third, the new lyrics show a deep and broad knowledge of Scripture, rarely repeating a topic or passage even after hundreds of songs. Minor League surveys the twelve minor prophets of the Old Testament, covering songs mainly from the ‘60’s and ‘70’s this time around: Steppenwolf, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and the like. Apologetix’s love of the original songs shines through; even the lengthy coda to the original “Layla” is painstakingly recreated.

Doves in Snakes’ Clothing is a more typical potpourri album of parodies from Alice Cooper to The Cars. One does wish they’d turn their attention to current artists more often. Surely Coldplay or Nickelback are as ripe for parody as Elvin Bishop. But for the material they do choose, the results range from pretty good to pretty amazing.

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