Brother Russell - Radio Jihad

Sunday 1st June 1997
Brother Russell - Radio Jihad

STYLE: Comedy
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
LABEL: Vinyl Communications 94
FORMAT: Cassette Album

Reviewed by Mike Rimmer

A very difficult album to review. To give you some background, a lot of conservative radio in the USA generally tends to encompass extreme right wing political views and extremely legalistic approaches to faith and society. Judgmental attitudes and DJ ego are hidden in a false spirituality and the lack of grace expressed by the phone-in hosts on these stations would probably shock you. They certainly upset Brother Russell and his chums who have conducted a campaign of humourous prank calls to a number of different "Christian" phone-in shows to lampoon the presenters' thinking. This CD is a compilation of these calls and sometimes they are absolutely hysterically funny. One star is Melba Moor who sounds like a harmless old lady but packs a hysterical punch whether talking about communism, mixing Groucho Marx and John Lennon with Karl Marx and Lenin or pretending to follow the extreme anti-Clinton political views of the presenter and consequently receiving a visit from the Secret Service before being assassinated live on air! Sounds a little sick? Just very cleverly performed! The irony, sarcasm or just plain silliness in setting up these radio presenters made me laugh out loud but some of the skits are a bit too close to the bone. Yet there are examples in the Bible where God's servants used strong humour to attack the false religious practices of the day. So beyond being a real laugh, this raises huge questions as to how ordinary Christians can challenge the fundamental faults of some right wing religious thought. Erm...I guess this is one way and you might not agree with it or you might find it funny. I did! Ultimately, I wouldn't touch this unless you have an extremely Pythonesque sense of humour, aren't easily offended (because there are a couple of examples of strong language) and you dislike the right wing American way!

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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