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New Radicals was an alternative band formed in 1998 by Gregg Alexander. Alexander envisioned a band composed of loosely associated members who would be changing constantly. The band, headed by Alexander, released a single album, Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too in October of 1998. The album was somewhat diverse, alternating between enthusiastic and almost cheerful ("Mother We Just Can't Get Enough") and depressing yet hopeful ("I Don't Wanna Die Anymore"). Their first single, "You Get What You Give", became a cult hit and helped the album go gold in the US. The band began to tour in the spring of 1999, but their busy schedule left the band (especially Alexander) exhausted. In July of 1999, Alexander announced that he was disbanding New Radicals both because of his lack of enthusiasm for the project and so he could pursue a producing career.

The track listing for Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too (with commentary):
  1. "Mother We Just Can't Get Enough"
    It's sometimes a bit hard to tell on this track whether the lyrics refer to a woman or drugs (I think it can be taken either way). In any case, it's a fairly upbeat song and a good start to the album.
  2. "You Get What You Give"
    The song that made New Radicals a one-hit wonder. Inspiring at times, politically incorrect at times, but overall an upbeat song with a bit of a moral...somewhere...
  3. "I Hope I Didn't Just Give Away The Ending"
    A huge departure from the previous two songs, this one is sad and depressing. It deals with drug abuse and the consequences and is generally...not very cheerful.
  4. "I Don't Wanna Die Anymore"
    A bridge from the slow and sad "I Hope I Didn't Just Give Away The Ending" to the much more cheerful "Jehovah Made This Whole Joint For You". Again, this song (seems to) deal with drug abuse and rehabilitation, but has a more hopeful tone to it.
  5. "Jehovah Made This Whole Joint For You"
    Talks about a "non-conformist" who gets caught in the crowd of other non-conformists. Interesting song and a good break from the previous two.
  6. "Someday We'll Know"
    One of my favorite songs on the record. A "missing you" song that makes it easy for you to envision what he is talking about.
  7. "Maybe You've Been Brainwashed Too"
    The title track is a bit...well, very, strange. For one, it doesn't follow the lyrics from the CD case insert, and it just...I can't really describe except to say wierd.
  8. "In Need of A Miracle"
    Despite the title, this is a fairly happy type song. As close to a love song as you'll get on this record (except maybe "Flowers"), but fast and upbeat.
  9. "Gotta Stay High"
    Another example of the pro-drug song the album is littered with. I don't really like it, but to each is own. Sounds similar to "In Need of A Miracle", but a little slower.
  10. "Technicolor Lover"
    Equal parts interesting, comical, and just plain wierd (there's a strange hooting sound in the background that the singer makes...you have to hear it), this is actually one of my favorites. One of those songs you can't really describe, but cool.
  11. "Flowers"
    The closest thing to a love song on this record, but it mixes some pop and rock in with it. And yes, the title does refer to drugs.
  12. "Crying Like a Church On Monday"
    Not the song I would have chosen to finish the record, but not terrible. More like "I Hope I Didn't Just Give Away the Ending" than anything else.

Overall, I like this record. If you don't mind (quite a few) drug references and stuff like that, it's worth the 15 bucks.

  • VH1.com:New Radicals:Biography. http://www.vh1.com/artists/az/new_radicals/artist.jhtml?_requestid=145813, MTV Networks, 5/1/03
  • MCA Records | New Radicals | Main. http://www.mcarecords.com/artistMain.asp?artistid=62, MCA Records, 5/1/03

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