To begin, I missed April. The albums that came out in April are listed below but I’m not going to write about them because I only listened to one of them. I got busy and lazy and to be honest, a little burnt out on listening to so much comedy.
I will eventually go back and listen to Guy Branum’s record and Nate Craig’s new record but the only album I actually listened to front to back was Adam Cayton-Holland’s “Backyards” and it’s good. It came out on April 7th and I listened to it on April 9th. My memory is garbage. I liked it. Maybe you will too.
Onward, upward. Back on schedule. Comedy kept comedying in the month of May and your ole intrepid cub reporter Sean Sullivan was there to like it. May was also the first time I’ve been hounded by PR people asking me if I listened to their client’s record, which led to a couple of bizarre exchanges where I had to explain that I would try to listen (which I did) and that I would list at the bottom of the article with the list of records for the month of May (which I did) and that if it was one of my five favorite records, I’d highlight (which maybe I did, maybe I didn’t… I didn’t).
Without further ado, here are my 5 favorite comedy releases from the month of May that I think you should listen to…
…but I understand that you may not ever listen to because you are a person and you make your own goddamn decisions.
1. Sean White, “Dead and Gone”
In a month that saw releases from big established names like Jen Kirkman and Nate Bargatze, aspecialthing records continued their streak of releasing records by relatviely unknown comedians among their roster of well-known acts like Doug Benson, Bob Odenkirk, and Paul F Tompkins. I almost didn’t listen to this album because I’ve been so busy as of late but I am glad that I did.
This is a fantastic record from a comedian who has channeled so much pain to create something so cathartic. He really only tackles two subjects and he breaks them down within the first 30 seconds of the record: within a two year period, all of his family passed away and his wife left him. Dead and Gone.
I cannot recommend you listen to this record enough. The standout track is “Brotherly Love & Strange Gifts” and if you’re the type of person that wants to hear a track before they commit to an album by someone they don’t know, go to iTunes and buy that track. I’m not going to pretend that I have any idea what kind of alchemy he did to turn this much pain into comedy but it is heartbreakingly hilarious.
2. Jen Kirkman, “I’m Gonna Die Alone (and I Feel Fine)
3. Nate Bargatze, “Full Time Magic”
4. Shane Mauss, “My Big Break”
…If you are reading this article, then you know Jen, Nate and Shane and if you don’t enjoy their stuff, stop reading this article.
5. David Heti, “It was Ok, an Album of Comedy by David Heti”
Rounding out the top five is maybe the first 2015 release from Stand Up Records. I’m always intrigued by everything those guys put out. Over the past couple of years, they’ve really highlighted some really unique, unsung talent and David Heti is no exception. Channeling the nightclub years of Woody Allen, David Heti presents an album of impressively dark, complicated one liners. It is not going to be for everyone but that’s ok.
Adam Cayton-Holland, “Backyards”
Rain Pryor, “Black and White”
Guy Branum, “Effable”
Kenny Zimlinghaus, “Night Pageant”
Josh Sneed, “Unsung Hero”
Chris D’elia, “Incorrigible”
Jim Norton, “Contextually Inadequate”
Nate Craig, “Egghead”
Rye Silverman, “Intimate Apparel”
Murray Valeriano, “Rusty Cow”
Nate Bargatze, “Full Time Magic”
Dave Stone, “Hogwash”
Nikki Carr, “Trophy Wife”
Eddie Della Siepe, “I Think I’ve Changed”
Aaron Berg, “Comedy Coltrane”
David Heti, “It was OK, An Album of Comedy by David Heti”
DL Hughley, “Clear”
Craig Shoemaker, “The Last Stand (Up)”
Sean White ,“Dead and Gone”
Sue Smith, “Slutty Pretzel”
Jen Kirkman, “I’m Gonna Die Alone (and I Feel Fine)”*
Shane Mauss, “My Big Break”
Sara Hennessy, “Trouble in Saradise”