Artist: Eric Herman
Album: The Incredibly Spaced-Out Adventures of Jupiter Jackson
Age Range: 6 to 10
Description: The Washington-based Herman is best known for his music (including one undeniable classic), so his latest album, a concept comedy album, is a bit of a departure. Not too much of one, as Herman's always had a higher laugh ratio than most kids albums, but in recording an album of comedy sketches, he definitely steps further out on that limb.
There's a supposed theme to the album -- it's an hour of radio broadcasting from the XYZPDQ Satellite Radio Network -- but it's unimportant. This is humor for your favorite 8-year-old of varying degrees of sophistication. Don't be deceived by some of the titles -- "Monday Science" and "Archaeology Hour" are probably the two most immature (in a good way) sketches. "Monster League Baseball" is particularly pun-filled. There's also a pleasing thoroughness to the album as a whole with phrases repeated in different sketches, and the "ads" and public service announcements having a certain... circularity. (You can listen to preview clips here.)
The album won't erase the memory of the classic comedy albums of your own youth, but it's amusing, and also serves to emphasize how comparatively rare albums like this - audio comedy targeted at the mid-elementary school crowd - are these days. Recommended.
Note: I received a copy of this album for possible review.