Urinetown: The Musical

In the nightmarish world of Urinetown, an evil corporation maintains a stranglehold over a drought-stricken society by monopolizing the scarce toilets.

In the nightmarish world of Urinetown, an evil corporation maintains a stranglehold over a drought-stricken society by monopolizing the scarce toilets. Despite this distasteful premise—or, perhaps, because of it—Urinetown proved one of the year's most inventive offerings in its sold-out, Obie Award-winning off-Broadway run this spring. Now, the CD comes out in time for the comedy's Broadway transfer in late August. The wry wit of Greg Kolis' book shines through, but this is no mere lark. Mark Hollmann's peppy, syncopated, slightly off-kilter music delights—unusual and fresh but still catchy, well-crafted, and downright smart. From the quirky, brassy overture through the clarinet-laden "Cop Song" and gospel-flavored "Run, Freedom, Run," the five-piece band translates a toe-tapping score with drama, humor, and true art.—WH