Sweet Insanity is a cancelled album by American singer-songwriter-producer-Beach Boys mastermind Brian Wilson. It was slated to be released as a follow-up to his self-titled debut album.
Following his first album, Brian was still under the control of his psychiatrist Eugene Landy and a second self-titled album intially named Brian was in the works. Some of the producers from Brian's debut came back (including Andy Paley who recalled the album's recording as an unpleasant experience) while notable newcomers include Bob Dylan and "Weird Al" Yankovic. One song off the album ("Smart Girls") was co-produced by Beastie Boys associate Matt Dike
Two iterations of the album were produced but none of them were accepted by Reprise Records. Considering that Brian didn't think people would like the album, he canned it, despite having good memories and thinking he made some of his best work on it. The album went through two rebirths: first as a bootleg, then as an album which also included songs from the Paley Sessions (Gettin' In Over My Head, released more than 12 years after Sweet Insanity) yet the songs were rerecorded with altered lyrics. Considering the fact that Eugene Landy is heavily associated with this album, it is unlikely that Sweet Insanity will be officially released as is.
Sweet Insanity is best remembered for its rap track "Smart Girls" but some Beach Boys fans view this album as one of Brian's finest works in his entire career.
- "Intro (Concert Tonight)" (0:16)
- "Someone To Love" (3:57)
- "Water Builds Up" (3:18)
- "Don't Let Her Know She's An Angel" (3:39)
- "Do You Have Any Regrets?" (3:43)
- "Brian" (also titled "Thank You") (3:21)
- "The Spirit of Rock'n'Roll (3:23)
- "Rainbow Eyes" (4:18)
- "Love Ya" (3:05)
- "Make A Wish" (2:57)
- "Smart Girls" (4:09)
- "Country Feelin'" (2:42)
- "Hotter" (3:50)
Something, oh something, oh something to troooooooope:
- A Cappella: "Intro".
- Album Title Drop: "Rainbow Eyes".Rainbow eyes, perfect fantasyYou thrill me with your sweet insanity
- Badass Boast: "Brian" and "Smart Girls" (but mostly "Smart Girls" since it fits into its rap genre).My name is brian and I'm the manI write hit songs with a wave of my handSongs of surf and sun and sandI make great music with my band
- Heavy Meta: "The Spirit of Rock'n'Roll" as a whole, however the song's genre is closer to hard rock.
- I Just Want to Be Loved: "Someone To Love"Someone, oh someone, oh someone to love (that's what I really need)Someone, oh someone, oh someone to love (I'm tired of make-believe)
- Large Ham: Brian is particularily excited on "Someone To Love" and "Smart Girls"Big brains are AWESOME, dude!
- Lyrical Cold Open: "Intro", "Water Builds Up", "Do You Have Any Regrets?" and "The Spirit Of Rock'n'Roll".
- Miniscule Rocking: "Intro" (lasting 16 seconds) is the abridged version of "Concert Tonight" a previously recorded yet unreleased song by Brian.
- Mythology Gag: "Smart Girls" is full of references to previous songs by The Beach Boys. Said mentionned songs are "Surfin' USA", "I Get Around", "(When I Grow Up) To Be A Man", "409", "Surfer Girl", "Fun, Fun, Fun", "Barbara Ann", "Sloop John B", "Help Me Rhonda", "Good Vibrations", "Wouldn't It Be Nice", "Don't Worry Baby" and "God Only Knows".
- Nerds Are Sexy: "Smart Girls".As time goes on I've seen the lightIntelligent chicks are dynamite
- Nostalgia Filter: "The Spirit Of Rock'n'Roll".The memory still holds us togetherNo matter if we're young or old
- One-Word Title: "Intro", "Brian" and "Hotter".
- The Power Of Music: "Brian".Music's been my saving graceBeen my ticket to a better placeBrought me riches, brought me fameMany people know my name
- Rearrange the Song: "Water Builds Up" was the initial version of the song "Let's Go To Heaven In My Car" which turned out to be recorded for the movie Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol.
- Five songs from the album would end up on Brian's 2004 album Gettin' In Over My Head rerecorded with different lyrics.
- Special Guest: "The Spirit of Rock'n'Roll" features Bob Dylan and Electric Light Orchestra's Jeff Lynne (as well as former Beach Boy David Marks on guitar).
- Take That!: Brian directly mentions (in a bad light) his parents, his cousin Mike Love and one of his brothers on "Brian".Feelin' shut out, no one caredNot my mother, not my brotherCrazy beatings by my father(...)My cousin says I ain't the sameCriticized I changed my game
- Title Drop: On all songs except "Intro".
- A Wild Rapper Appears!: "Smart Girls" is the only track featuring rapping.