Michael Cera’s ‘true that’ Review: So Melancholy, So Cool, So Damn Long
Remember that a heartfelt, supremely uncomfortable a cappella rendition of 'These Eyes' in Superbad? Well someone gave that kid a banjo and a Wi-Fi connection and told him to go to town.
Hold up, Rita Ora. Beyoncé has a new protégé/rival, and his name is Michael Cera. Cera sent shock waves up and down Williamsburg last night with the surprise release of his album true that, otherwise known as Michael Cera’s infinite album because damn this thing is long. The 18-track non-visual album is currently available for streaming on Michael Cera’s Bandcamp, because Bandcamp is indie and weird and Michael Cera is cooler than you.
Your first thought while listening to this album will probably be, “Wow, Michael Cera does a really good Michael Cera impression.” Everything from the quirky artist description “Michael Cera was born in Canada in 1988 at the tender age of zero” to the adorable accompanying photos to the simple, sincere sound is exactly as it should be. Plus, the reference to Cera’s Canadian heritage lets us imagine that Justin Bieber was really just trying to make lo-fi, twang-tinged indie folk music all along. Remember in Superbad when Cera’s Evan performs a heartfelt, supremely uncomfortable a cappella rendition of “These Eyes”? Well someone gave that kid a banjo and a Wi-Fi connection and told him to go to town.
A mix of instrumental tracks, lovely ballads and solemn covers, true that is music to make sweet, twee love to (just remember to use protection and/or let Jennifer Garner adopt your baby). The sound is all melancholy, alternative, and adorable, like if She & Him became just Him, and He was sort of lonely and bummed about it. Even more remarkable is the fact that Cera appears to be playing all the instruments and singing vocals—between this and his innate sense of rhythm, it's quickly becoming apparent that Michael Cera was the stud of his high school jazz band. And if you're wondering if there's folksy whistling on this album…did you even have to ask?
So is there any difference at all between Michael Cera’s true that and Beyoncé’s Beyoncé? Honestly, not really. In “What Gives,” Cera samples what appears to be a child’s voice, which is a blatant attempt to rival Blue Ivy’s vocal stylings on “Blue.” “Sexy Danger” has all the wild, sensual energy of “Drunk in Love,” but with absolutely no words! And while we’d love to hear a Michael Cera cover of the iconic “Blow,” it bears noting that any of the lyric-less tracks on this album COULD be about cunnilingus—after all, Michael Cera does love blow.
The main (only) difference between Beyoncé and Michael Cera is the sort of activity these artists inspire. For example, a great time to listen to Beyoncé is when you're in the mood to stand in front of a mirror for 66 minutes and 35 seconds whispering “I am Sasha Fierce” over and over again. It’s also good music for pumping yourself up to burn down a building or win a dirty custody battle.
Meanwhile, here are some suggestions for appropriate things to do while listening to true that:
Get really high.
Fish in the Hudson, then humanely release the fish back into the wild.
Be unemployed in Williamsburg.
Take an Instagram at a coffee shop.
Draft a series of sensitive texts to your ex.
Look out the window of a Greyhound bus on a rainy day.
Throw one of those uncomfortable parties where the music is just upbeat enough that you kind of want to dance, but you know that’s not the cool thing to do.
Roll some more joints.
Get really high again.