The Sophtware Slump succeeds on many levels. One, it has one of the most wonderful examples of cover art in Rock History; two, it is a viable and beautiful concept album, and with what a concept; three, It contains some of the most beautiful pop-rock songs ever created by the hand of man.
The concept is a simple one - the conflict of computers and nature, and Grandaddy exploit this to its full. There are paeans to a strange Tulgey Wood-esque landscape littered with "vacuum bags" and "Oily Rags" and populated with deer ('Broken Household Appliance National Forest'), odes to the futility and sadness of science ('Chartsengrafs') and, at the album's core, the story of Jed the Humanoid, a robot created to do good who becomes depressed and dies of alcoholism. The twin songs of 'Jed the Humanoid' and 'Jed's Other Poem' are complex studies of the issue of artificial intelligence, and are far more beautiful and deep than Spielberg's A.I could ever have been.
The cover art reflects these concerns, with broken keyboard keys forming the title and band name over a stunning cold backdrop of mountains and meadows. Wonderful.
In all, a perfect piece of art, one that should adorn any self-respecting music fan's shelf. Unmissable.