The Michigan Daily
Saturday, September 18, 1982
A concert of record
By Jerry BrabeneC
T HE LIVE recording sessions for
the Ann Arbor Music Project's
(AAMP) compilation album Cruisin'
Ann Arbor settled into a comfortable
and efficient groove Thursday night at
Joe's Star Lounge, featuring polished
sets by Madcat Ruth, Steve Newhouse
and White Line Fever, and George
Bedard and the Bonnevilles.
Wednesday's frenetic mood,
generated by opening night jitters, an
adventurous set by Mike Gould and the
Gene Pool Band, and the time tested
R&B of the Blue Front Persuaders and
the Urbations, gave way to a more
relaxed country atmosphere Thursday,
as if the crowd from Flood's had
migrated en masse to Joe's. Opening
night technical hassles precluded a real
sound check prior to the Wednesday
show, but by Thursday the sound crew
had the bugs worked out, and the
assured performances of all three
groups attested to both their own ex-
perience and the skills and hard work of
the AAMP crew and the staff at Joe's.
Peter "Madcat" Ruth continues to
amaze with his creativity and
professionalism, and his set with
bassist Jason Boeckeloo, opening Thur-
sday's show, established a warm rap-
port with the audience that would last
through the evening. Ruth's hot little
duo played like a five-piece band, on
favorite numbers like "Fishin' Blues,"
and others. The highlight of Madcat's
set was an extended harmonica caden-
za that utilized Ruth's full arsenal of
electronic effects in building up a
variety of sound textures that cap-
tivated the crowd.
Next, the sound crew briefly swar-
med over the stage in preparation for
Steve Newhouse's quartet, White Line
Fever. Featuring the writing and
singing of guitarist Kevin Brown and
bass guitar by Sailcatz veteran Wille
McGoon, Newhouse's set was strong in
country standards by Merle Haggard,
Buck Owens and Jerry Reed, and
finished up with a kinetic medley of
dance numbers that was a nonstop
history of Ann Arbor dance music, from
"Wipeout" and "Woolly Bully" to the
reggae hit "Johnny Too Bad." Brown
sang his originals "Playing Kansas
City on a Twelve-String Guitar" and
"Country Cowboys" like Ann Arbor's
answer to Jackson Browne, and teamed
up with Newhouse for some burning
lead guitar work on Jerry Reed's "You
Took the Rambler out of Me."
Headliner George Bedard runs a
more humorous, rockabilly influenced
country band that brings out his twangy
guitar and hayseed vocals on tunes by
country outlaws like George Jones and
EddiesCochrane. The Bonneville's
sound is rounded out by the the very
capable pedal steel guitar of Mark
The Cruisin' Ann Arbor project con-
cludes tonight at Joe's, and. the
highlights will soon be available on an
album featuring a cut each by all
twelve bands. The first three nights
have been great successes, and the con-
trasting moods and styles attest to the
variety and vitality of the local music
scene. The series winds up with the new
want sounds of Non Fiction, Boal, and
the Cult Heroes, so come down to Joe's
and take part in a bit of local music
history in the making.
Peter 'Madcat' Ruth blasts out some tunes last night at Joe's Star Lounge.
Aswad- Not Satisfied' (CBS)
Opening line to grab neophyte
reader: This album was not made by
Opening line to grab informed
reader: Sly and Robbie are NOT on this
Logical conclusion to Fred Neophyte
and Fred Informed: This so-called
reggae album sucks! Why, doesn't it
Verdict of Fred Reviewer: "Not
Fred N. & Fred I. (F&F): But Mr.
Reviewer, like, Sly and Robbie, man,
and Black Uhuru! They're the best sin-
ce . . (sob!) Bob Marley died!
(reverential bow of heads).
Your Upstart Reviewer (YUR): Sin-
ce Bob died, nobody has taken his role
as a mover of reggae music to new
heights and new areas. Uhuru are ex-
citing live but, to be honest, its last
couple albums, while good they are,
haven't touched its Showcase. And
before you mention it, I'm getting a lit-
tle bored of funny-named cowns chan-
ting what translates to "Oh boy, doesn't.
he wrldatink; let's smoke some pot"
over the same drum and bass line, and I
haven't heard the new Bunny Wailer
F&F: What makes these Aswad
people so great? (skeptical laughter)
YUR: Three reasons : a) what's
there, b) what's not there, and c) the
F&F: HAHAHAHA! Let's leave!
YUR: What's there: 1) warm har-
monies, 2) a horn section from planets
unknown (haven't heard this much
good horn playing since ska died), 3)
crackling blues guitar licks, 4) layer
upon layer of pretty keyboard sounds,
S 5) occasional decent (not great) words.
F&F: What about b) ?
YUR: What's not there: I even like
what's not played better than what is.
Reggae is about space. Space between
the notes. There is a lotta space here;
F&F: And the Thump?
YUR: Well, I'm a little embarrassed.
When I turn this record up loud, and the
drummer bludgeons his set par-
ticularly forcefully ...
YUR: It really hurts my chest and I
get a tingly feeling in my bones. I kind
of like it.
F&F: Wow, you're really sort of a
YUR: Oh, I forgot to mention one
thing: I guess even I am not satisfied.
F&F: (gasp) After all this! Why?
YUR: Because Aswad's dub albums
are a hundred times better than this,
and I'm waiting for the next one.
F&F: Can we wait too?
YUR: Have a seat.
F&F: We could never understand
these Jamaicans anyway.
YUR: (sound of loud inhaling,
followed by violent coughing).
-C. E. Krell
Robert Gordon-'Too Fast
to Live, Too Young to Die'
Stray Cats fans know all about Robert
Gordon, the person perhaps most
responsible for the New York City
revival of rockabilly starting about five
years ago. This album is a compilation
of representative Gordon works from
past LPs, plus three previously
unreleased numbers-a live "Black
SI OE ErvrnnI & EII r DIUIrI1
Slacks," and two Marshall Crenshaw
tunes, "Something's Gonna Happen"
and "Wasting My Time."
Gordon's fine cover of Crenshaw's
"Someday, Someway" is included, as is
his version of "Fire," which
Springsteen wrote especially for him
(Springsteen and the Pointer Sisters
both do it better unfortunately). The
excellent guitar contributions of Link
Wray on Gordon's second album Fresh
When Peter Gabriel delivered the
master tapes of his third self-titled solo
album to Atlantic Records, they
refused to distribute it on the grounds
that the material was "commercial
suicide." Gabriel took the tapes to
Polygram, who agreed to sign him for
easily prompt you to check under the
bed or in the closet for the beasts hiding
with Gabriel's imagination.
The current style of composition
Gabriel favors is based on percussion
and electronics, beginning with a basic
rhythm track and progr'essing to the
rinstrumentation and then, finally, to
the lyrics. This forces him to give equal
consideration to both sides of
songwriting. No two sound exactly
alike, but there is a conceptual air to
the songs on Security that harkens back
to "Biko" on P.G. III, with an accent on
native cultures and tribal rhythms ser-
ving as the core. From that point on, the
identity is Gabriel's alone.
No one pops up from the old Genesis
days to provide back up on Security;
even Robert Fripp, a three-time past
contributor, is missing. There are five
musicians essentially involved, in-
cluding Tony Levin of the resurrected
King Crimson, David Rhodes
fromRandom Hold, and synthesizer
whiz Larry Fast, plus minimal help
from a half-dozen or so others. Thew
songs don't move as regimentally as
before-instead, they jump with the
spastic handclaps in "The Family and
the Fishnet" or the percussion-fest that
closes out "The Rhythm and the Heat."
When they do keep a steady beat,
however, it's a gallup rather than a jog
you're in for.
Undeniably, Peter Gabriel is im-
proving consistently with each album
by exploring the limitations found
within the scope of a rock and roll ar-
tist. His greatness comes from a
willingness to look from side to side as
well as ahead at the boundless avenues
open to his unique interpretation, to
break through new grounds. Security is
a fitting testament of those ideals.
FIRST STOP FRATERNITY RUSH
this Sun ay . .unt . ..
S. Un iver.)
761 - 6133
Actor/singer Robert Gordon takes a ride back to the early days of rockabilly
in "The Loveless.''
Fish Special are better represented on
tracks like "The Way I Walk" and "Sea
Gordon can do Presley (the Jor-
donaires even back up on "The Way I
Walk") and Gener Vincent, but has a
simultaneously fresh and contem-
porary voice, especially on the more
recent Crenshaw tracks. He's equally
comfortable with ballads and very hot
rockers. My only complaint is that RCA
chose not to include "Are You Gonna Be
the One," an excellent original from the
1980 album of the same name. Also, I
wish I'd seen Gordon as a motorcycle
man in his movie "The Loveless."
I've heard rumors of a forthcoming
collaboration which, if true, would
combine one of pop rock's best
songwriters with one of its finest
a one album deal. Ironically, that
album turned out to be an artistic and
critical triumph, as well as his best
selling to date, and even earned Gabriel
some airplay on commerical radio with
the single, "Games Without Frontiers."
Subtitled Security, Gabriel's latest
LP has as distinct a personality within
its grooves as his past three. Although
most mucially similar to the last
release, it takes the ideas originally
hinted at there and expands them. Like
the Talking Heads on Remain in Light,
Security is an experimenting ground on
which Gabriel runs rampant: lyrics
aren't so much sung as spoken, drums
accent rather than propel the com-
positions, music seethes and pulsates
and continually leads the listener where
they would least expect. The result is an
album of intensely disturbing music
that, again ironically, gives one little or
no feeling of "security"-it could
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SUPERM4EMORY FOR SCHOOL
816 GE DOES
ANN ARB0R, M. 48104
Pr Ot'mi0JDOOR may 1 r..,0 C iOdecole'
Dance Theatre Studio
711 N. University (near State St.), Ann Arbor " 995-4242
co-directors: Christopher Watson & Kathleen Smith
day, evening and weekend classes
new classes beginning Sept. 13
N. Y. TIMES
5,t, Ave ,o eb e r 701-9700
SAT. SUN-12:50, 2:40, 4:40
6:30, 8:20, 10:10
MON-6:30, 8:20, 10:10
______________ .5 U .
I N .