Kevin Driskill and Chad Arlint have worked many years at LHS. Most know them as principal and co-vice principal. But few know about the duo’s newly released sophomore album, Roll Call in an Empty Class.
Arlint’s stagename is Notorious Gnome, an interesting choice for the new artist, while Driskill has chosen the name xblueshuesx. This is a nod to the show Blue’s Clues, which he cited as inspiration for the record with the Notorious Gnome.
In Roll Call In An Empty Class, Notorious Gnome brings his grunge and metal inspiration to xblueshuesx’s somber melodies and rhymes. Some songs sound truly haunting and memorable like the intro “Substitute Bleachers,” where Notorious Gnome details his intense phobia of bleachers. The chorus really gets into the mind of a bathophobiac with, “Turn away from the bleachers, two sets on each side, yell for a teacher.” Then xblueshuesx adlibs in the background, bringing the anxiety to life.
xblueshuesx is no slouch on his tracks. His work includes a little piano string with an interesting incorporation of a tie hitting a mahogany desk, which serves as a percussive loop in the boombastic melody. The song is the one and only “Steve leaves,” an intense take on the costar of Blue’s Clues and his exit from the show. It includes heart-wrenching lyrics like, “Can you find the clue? Lost last season, why dude? You left without reason.”
Bobby Shmurda even makes an appearance on “Heated Dogs and People.” Shmurda’s interesting voice accompanies Notorious Gnome’s deep grunge vibe. Truly, this song will be remembered for its lines like, “That’s my dog house, keep it all chained now, I’m alive though, left the Gnome about a week ago.” It’s a great comeback for the incarcerated rapper.
Notorious Gnome makes sure not to forget about his metal inspirations with, “Through a Tire and Some Change,” along with a great drumroll and guitar riff. He delivers a great intro with, “On a cold winter morning, at some time in the night, in a stove now it’s hot hot hot, we run out of sight.”
The album has been critically acclaimed by Rolling Stone, Musicritic and Pitchfork. It was also reviewed by a critic with the name of Anthony Fantano, who said, “This is the best thing since melons. Which is saying a lot, coming from the best teeth in the game, me, the God of reviews.” This is quite a bold statement by the flannel-wearing philanthropist. So is this album deserving of what it got?
This album is filled with interesting musical developments. This is the first time a toilet scrubber has been used in a piece of musical entertainment. Every song is a masterpiece. Absolutely zero flaws exist in the album. Because of this album, every reviewer on earth has finally collectively agreed on something. It’s been deemed the best album… ever. All music in production has stopped, and people now agree the age of music is over with the release of this album. Some call it the greatest musical media, and others call it the end of all audio creativity.