Bo Burnham – Inside

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Artist: Bo Burnham

Album: Inside

Label: Attic Bedroom, Corp. & Imperial Records & Ingrooves & Republic Records

Release Date: 10 June 2021

Location: United States

Written by Keszia

Acutely offensive and controversial, the American comedian, musician, and filmmaker, Robert Pickering “Bo” Burnham first found popularity on YouTube circa 2006 and his career took off from there. However, his fourth comedy special and fifth album, Inside almost didn’t happen.

Bo took a 5-year hiatus from the spotlight as he started to experience panic attacks while on stage. In January 2020, he decided to end his hiatus and make a return to performing, and, well, we all know how that year panned out. Thankfully, he decided to produce the special (and album) from the confines of his home. Bo has an amazing talent for finding the right way to structure a song and idea and covers topics I’d never think about turning into a song.

We’re absolutely spoilt with this 20-track album, featuring songs about the internet and Instagram, FaceTime, sexting, turning 30, Jeff Bezos and being an intern, I guarantee you will find a song that speaks to you. Not only is there a range in topics, but Bo’s tracks range in duration and style. If you want something that sounds a little polka, it’s in there. Or some 70s techno? That’s there too. There are even some slow ballads when you’re feeling a bit moody – And let’s not forget the moody songs that sound like a dance track!

He jabs at his impact on the world with Comedy:

The world is so… fucked up

Systematic oppression

Income inequality

The other stuff

Ant there’s only one thing that I can do about it

While – while being paid and being the centre of attention

Challenges you to walk in his shoes in Goodbye:

Hey, here’s a fun idea

How ‘bout I sit on the couch

And I watch you next time?

I wanna hear you tell a joke

When no one’s laughing in the background

But then, he’ll also treat us with such gems from Welcome to The Internet:

Welcome to the internet, what would you prefer?

Would you like to fight for civil rights or tweet a racial slur?

Be happy, be horny, be bursting with rage

We’ve got a million different ways to engage

And a very relatable moment from FaceTime with my Mom (Tonight):

She says, “Oh, look who’s here, say hi to Dad”

He says, “How ya doing, bud?”

I say, “I’m not so bad”

And that’s the deepest talk we’re ever had

One of the most atmospheric tracks has got to be All Eyes On Me, which earned him a Grammy for Best Song Written For Visual Media – the Inside special also attracted other awards at the 2021 Primetime Emmy Awards and Hollywood Critics Association. I quite frankly have too many favourites from Inside, which may not make me an effective reviewer, though I challenge this thought – he simply has a lot of fantastic tracks. Though, if I had to tell you to listen to 3 songs to test your likeability to him as an artist, I would suggest Comedy, Welcome to The Internet, and Goodbye.

As a long-standing fan of Bo’s music, Inside was not something I was expecting, which threw me for a loop when I first saw it on Netflix in 2021. I personally think this album is great as a standalone, but if you have Netflix, I highly recommend watching the special there too.

Overall if you’ve got a dark sense of humour or want to laugh at, then immediately question yourself, or if you want to try something new, I would highly recommend listening to this album. Bo is an artist I’ve followed for some time, and I am personally excited to see what he produces next.

Listen to Inside on Spotify.

Watch Inside on Netflix.


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