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March 11, 1980 - Image 6

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1980-03-11

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a0

Page 6-Tuesday, March 11, 1980-The Michigan Daily
ROMANTICS A T MICHIGAN TPA TRE
Riding the new wav to success

By STEVE HOOK
We'll start at square-one: The
Michigan Theater, which is suited for
passive, restrained concert-viewing, if
any, should not present musicians who
expect their audience to boogie.
Weather Report can satisfy at the
Michigan Theater, but a band like the
Romantics, which evolved on the
Detroit-East Coast nightclub circuit,
invites participation by its listeners; it
virtually requires participation (i.e.,
dancing, et al.). This is restrained, if
not prohibited along the long, arcing
rows of the theater, especially down
front, where a sprawling orchestra pit,
situated where a dance floor would be,
creates an aggravating distance bet-
ween the musicians and their audience,
a circumstance which is unjust to both.
Even passive viewing is compromised
in the theater's gradually sloping,
movie-suited auditorium. This dilem-
ma prevailed there a week ago Satur-
day, sadly enough, and discolored an
otherwise inspired performance by the
Romantics.
Their appearance followed Steve
Nardella's band, an off-beat "rock-a-
billy" boogie-woogie combo from Ann
Arbor. Nardella dominated the
spotlight with lead vocals and guitar,
and, on occasion, an outstanding har-
monica ability that rivals Madcat Ruth.
They seemed most at home jamming to
"Back in the USSR," with the keyboar-
dist, acoustic bassist and drummer
each displaying their- ,unorthodox
styles.
AFTER A lengthy intermission, the
Romantics appeared, clad in their now-
customary red-leather jackets and
narrow ties, and burst into the opening
licks of "When I Look in your Eyes."
Rhythm guitarist and lead vocalist
Wally Palmer, whose boyish appearan-
ce is similar to that of Paul McCartney,
led the band through their familiar
repertoire (solely consisting of the
songs on their first and only album).
Lead guitarist Mike Skill and bass
guitarist Rich Cole kept pace with
Palmer, along with Jimmy Marinos on
percussion.
With the Romantics, rhythm is
everything (as in the chord
progressions in "What I Like About
You") -- there are few solos, or fluc-
tuations in meter during their com-
positions. These songs are short and
sweet blends of all four instruments - a
carefully conceived synthesis of inter-

01

The Romantics, Detroit's premier new wave group, are composed of (left fght): guitarists
Mike Skill, Wally Palmer and Rich Cole; and drummer Jimmy Marinos.

working guitars and percussion,
providing a backdrop for Palmer's
lyrics.
Like the album, the Romantics are
just fine on stage, but only for awhile.
Their formulaic style, tight and
repetitive, is enjoyable for a finite
period of time, after which it becomes
tiring. Was this because we weren't
allowed to dance? Given the physical
constraints of the Michigan Theater -
this music is dance music, after all, and
by being unwillingly confined to obser-
vation, the grating nature of the
Romantics' "power pop" is compoun-
ded for the listeners. i
Aside from this, however, one won-
ders how far this repetitive style can
go. "What'll they do next, what ct they
do?" mused a Romantics fan during a
post-concert discussion in the lobby.
LIKE MOST "new wave" bands (a

label which is used with grave ap-
prehensions, as it has served, like most
labels, to confuse rather than clarify),
the Romantics, with their energetic,
back-to-basics rock and roll, appeal to
the legion of uncompromising rockers
who want to get on their feet again, af-
ter a decade of synthesizers, guitar
solos, and dry ice. Of all the charac-
teristics of new wave, the deter-
mination to involve active, rather than
passive, listening seems to stand out -
a characteristic of the original spirit of
rock and roll. Suddenly, the emphasis is
back on the music - on stage, the
Romantics, like so many refreshing
new bands, base their appeal on
passionate, unceasing melodies, rather
than pretentious special effects and
self-serving theatrics. This approach is
shared by others: - the Ramones, the
Clash, the B-52's, and others whose in-

stinct emphasis on energy and
rhythave brought them together
under ttidy "new wave" label.
This clearly a step in the right
directiohowever overdue, after an
era in wh musical innovation and in-
tegrity e sadly under-valued in
mainstrei rock. But popular tastes
have a wof shifting, and it is this
semi-hapnard characteristic of
popular tanthat dictates mercilessly
what artistill prosper and what ar-
tists will not
The Romics have been perfor-
ming sinceArly 1977, and their
straight-forwi honest style is just
now, hundreqf "Tell it to Carrie's"
later, being ajeciated on a national
level. -As this le suddenly becomes
fashionable toe whims of popular
tastes, so do themantics.

Drugs spill through KyberPass

BENMFIT CONCEMRT
T UESD AY, A PR IL 1-8:40 PM -: MCIA HAR
MICH I A N HMECHIGANE
T ICK ETS: $8.50 and $7.50 o on sale Tuesday, ,e
MARCH 27, 28, 29
CENTR, OFAM ANDLOCL HUGERMR. FLOOD'S
GROUPS.FORINFO 995-5940
Album on Sale
For more information call 995-1978
SCHOOLKIDS
523 E. Liberty $4.99

as warvweakens Afghl

KHYBER PA SS, rfghan-Pakistan
Border (AP) - The famed Khyber
Pass has become the major exit route
for opium, marijuana and hashish traf-
fic leaving Afghanistan in the 10 weeks
since 80,000 Soviet troops occupied the
land-locked country.
Prior to the Soviet intervention,
Afghan police operated at checkpoints
along the Khyber Road, forcing drug

traffickers to use mountain trails to
bring their goods into Pakistan or to go
through Iran.
IN RECENT weeks, however, Afghan
police forces have been hard hit by
desertions and by guerrilla activities,
and the checkpoints that once existed at
points leading up to the Khyber Pass
are no more.
Under a longstanding Afghan-

an poice
Pakistani agreem;, civilians are
allowed to cross the "der between the
two countries withokven showing an
identity card, and, a typical day,
several hundred Afgis carry heavy
bundles of farm proe into Pakistan
without being searche
Among the things ticarry through
the crossing at Torkh,-just east of
the 3,400-foot-high Kier Pass, are
opium, cannabis and hiish. All three
crops are freely roduced in
Afghanistan.
ON THE WAY bac often after
buying Western consurr products not
found in Marxist-run Aanistan, the
Afghans are frisked by khan soldiers
who seem interested c in finding
hidden arms. There - no Soviet
soldiers in sight.
The production of opiuls one of the
main sources of revenue farmers in
the rugged and impoverisi region.
In Washington on Mond, U.S. Drug
Enforcement Administra Peter B.
Bensinger said heroin'om Iran,
Afghanistan and Pakistan replacing
shipments cut off in a ckdown by
federal authorities. Helso said
political disorder in the thr countries
makes it easier forcriminal
organizations to smuggle e heroin
and opium out across the bders.

1A

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HOUSING DIVISION
WEST QUADRANGLE
RESIDENT STAFF APPLICATIONS
FOR SPRING/SUMMER 1980
Available Starting March 11, 1980
In 1500 SAB
POSITIONS INCLUDE: RESIDENT DIRECTOR AND RESIDENT ADVISOR
Resident Advisor positions require a minimum of 55 credit hours. Graduate status preferre
for the resident directors positions.
QUALIFICATIONS: (1) Must be a registered U of M student on the Ann Arbor campus
(2) Undergraduates must have completed a minimum of 55 credit hours and have a 2.
cumulative grade point average in.the school or college in which they are enrolled. (3) Grad,
uate students must be in good academic standing in the school or college in which they ore
enrolled. (4) Preference will be given to applicants who have lived in residence halls a4
University level for at least one year. (5) Proof of these qualifications will be required.
Current staff and other applicants who have an application on file must come to this office tc
update their application form. Staff selection and placement shall be determined in the
following order:

i. Current staff in WQBN* who have been reappointed for the

- .,

. 1

il

I

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