NPR logo 'Pretty on the Inside' and the Ugly Truth

'Pretty on the Inside' and the Ugly Truth

Pretty on the Inside

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Monday's Pick

  • Song: "Pretty on the Inside"
  • Artist: Ceann
  • CD: Rave, Rant, Lose Pants
  • Genre: Folk-Pop

Ceann's music transports listeners directly to their local pub. hide caption

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Music can take listeners places — open spaces, natural vistas. The music of Ceann (pronounced "key-ann") takes them straight to a table at the local pub, with cold pints at the ready. The band's second disc, Rave, Rant, Lose Pants, keeps its focus narrow, specializing in good-natured musical celebrations of drunken debauchery.

The title of "Pretty on the Inside" telegraphs the gag from the start, but there's no way of predicting exactly how far it's going to go. The chorus is the least of it — "You're pretty on the inside / and that's better than not pretty at all / You're pretty on the inside / It's just too bad I'm an outside kind of pretty guy." With every verse, it induces more flinches and grins, as Ceann explores its shallowness more deeply: "You're really sweet / On paper, you're exactly the kind of girl I'd like to meet."

For all its vacillation between horrible and hilarious, there's something about "Pretty on the Inside" that rescues the song from throwaway silliness. Ceann possesses both chops and wit, and for those who've always heard that it's what's inside that counts, it's sort of refreshing to hear the external so unapologetically placed in the spotlight. But hey: It's better than not being pretty at all, right?

Listen to yesterday's 'Song of the Day.'