“The Prophecy” is a leap back in time to the ballad era of the 80s with its abundance of synthesizers, powerful instrumentals and vocal tracks layered over vocal tracks. But make no mistake, this is no ordinary 80s-inspired album. Rather, Ninja Sex Party’s “The Prophecy” is actually a masterclass in musical comedy. For their eighth album — and fifth original album — NSP has demonstrated their growth in maturity and musical prowess with a collection of songs that are nonstop entertainment.
First, allow me to introduce you to Ninja Sex Party. As credited by Genius, each song of theirs is currently written by the two key members of the band, Dan Avidan, who sings vocals, and Brian Wecht, who plays the keyboard and synthesizer, as well as their producer Jim Roach.
There is fiction behind the band, which can be read about on their website and seen through their music videos, in which Avidan and Wecht play the characters Danny Sexbang and Ninja Brian, respectively. Sexbang is a Jewish Superhero (playing off of Avidan’s own Jewish faith) who in a Johnny Bravo-esque manner is always making attempts to woo the ladies, while Ninja Brian is a mute sociopath with a penchant for murdering Sexbang at the end of almost every song. Understanding the basics of these characters is important, as much of the humor in their music is based around them.
As you could guess by their name, much of Ninja Sex Party’s comedic material is based around sex and similar topics. Many could make the immediate presumption that the jokes they would hear would be immature and would rely strictly on that obscenity for the sake of the punchline. They’d be right, but not about “The Prophecy.”
Much of NSP’s early work rides on the obscenity, but for their fifth original album the band has shown clear evolution from this past. Most tracks don’t even bring up the topic and are hilarious entirely for their own reasons. My personal favorite from the album was “I Don’t Know What We’re Talking About (And I Haven’t for a While),” within which Sexbang describes a date he is on, as he becomes increasingly unaware of his surroundings.
Of course, Ninja Sex Party stays true to its roots and plenty of the lyrics to be found throughout the LP are sex-inspired. However, rather than just being lewd references to sex, they are often overly silly and absurd descriptions and innuendos. If not that, it’s the absurd delivery that makes the comedy more entertaining than it used to be.
In regards to composition, the track “The Decision Part 2: Ten Years Later” provides the perfect juxtaposition as to how the instrumentals backing NSP have gotten bigger and better. The track begins sounding like its antecedent, “The Decision,” from 2009, with just the sound of a standard beat and a synthesizer. Quickly thereafter it explodes into a big and powerful instrumentation.
Since 2015, Ninja Sex Party has been joined by TWRP (Tupperware Remix Party) as a backing band, but it is 2020’s “The Prophecy” that gives TWRP the spotlight they deserve. No phrase is more accurate to describe the awesome guitar solos and bass grooves than pure rock and roll.
The only thing holding “The Prophecy” back from being Ninja Sex Party’s best yet is the slight overreliance on non sequiturs for the comedy. There are frequent breaks in the songs where almost all of the music stops so that Sexbang can make a blunt statement about the happenings of the song. I understand this is a token of NSP, as they have been using this tactic since their early days.
Personally, I think this strategy worked better back then when the instrumentation of the songs were much more subtle. Now, too much comes to a halt for these bits and it’s more jarring than funny. The good news is that these bits are few and far between.
When it comes down to it, “The Prophecy” is a comedy rock album of epic proportions. Ninja Sex Party has come so far and has grown so much and they know this. Beyond the comedy and beyond the rock and roll, some songs strike genuine notes when they acknowledge this progress. With each and every track you can tell Avidan and Wecht are happy to be making this music, and those positive vibes project directly into the audience with this album. If that is what you desire, a good time, “The Prophecy” is the album for you.