Crash Test Dude is the first (authorized) live recording by any of the Dummies. In Brad's own words:
So, after the Give Yourself A Hand tour, I decided to do a
working vacation tour. I figured it would go something like this. I would
make a rockumentary of my tour in the redneck bars of Canada. The idea is
that me and my buddy Murray, who was Crash Test Dummies' side-guy guitar
player/back-up vocalist ever since the Worm's Life tour, would go out
and do a drunk acoustic tour. We'd play everything from CTD hits to my old
fave hits, everything from Tom Jones to Britney Spears. This is a raw,
crude recording, made at Ted's Wrecking Yard in Toronto, Canada. It is
full of satire, self-deprecation, and obscenity, so play it for your
children, and prepare them for the raw, crude thing which becomes
-Brad Roberts on Crash Test Dude
Crash Test Dummies are a five-person musical group, originally from Winnipeg, Canada. The band's material is rather difficult to classify, having changed throughout the course of four albums. Possibly, it could be described as an unusually literate, eclectic brand of pop. Their songs are characterized by whimsical, thoughtful, and dryly humorous lyrics, creative musical arrangements, and the unmistakable presence of lead singer Brad Roberts' distinctive voice.
Crash Test Dummies first appeared on the Canadian musical scene in the late 1980's and began to achieve commercial success with the release of their first album, The Ghosts That Haunt Me, in 1991. The album eventually reached quadruple platinum sales (400,000) in Canada, largely due to the overwhelming popularity of the smash hit single "
'Superman's Song', and earned CTD the 1991 Juno Award for Group of the Year.
However, the Dummies did not receive much international recognition until the 1993 release of their second album, God Shuffled His Feet. Particularly instrumental in increasing CTD's exposure in the U.S. market was the appearance of a new type of radio format: adult album-oriented alternative rock (AAA). These stations put the single 'Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm' in high rotation, with the result that by mid-1994 the album had passed the platinum sales mark in the U.S. (one million), and had also earned the Dummies three Grammy nominations and three more Juno nominations.
To date, GSHF has sold more than five and a half million copies worldwide.
In 1996, the Dummies' third album, A Worm's Life, was released to mixed critical and moderate commercial success. The singles were warmly received in some markets, but nothing matched the runaway success of either 'Superman's Song' or 'Mmm Mmm Mmm Mmm'. Still, the album went platinum in Canada in less than one month.
Give Yourself A Hand, the Dummies' fourth album, was released March 23, 1999. The album showcased yet another new sound for the Dummies, as it featured Ellen Reid singing lead vocals on three tracks, and Brad Roberts singing in a falsetto on several others. The whole sound of the album was much more electronic than the previous recordings.
During a much-deserved hiatus, Benjamin Darvill became the first Dummy to release solo material. Under the name Son Of Dave, Darvill first brought out the album 01, followed with B. Darvill's Wild West Show. Released on Ben's own label, Husky Records, the eclectic CDs received widespread critical acclaim.
The Dummies surprised fans in 2001 by putting their solo projects on hold for a fifth studio album and tour. Entitled I Don't Care That You Don't Mind, this CD saw the Dummies returning to their acoustic roots. Lead singer Brad Roberts compared this album to the Dummies' first, The Ghosts That Haunt Me, though he calls it more atmospheric and polished.