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March 03, 1983 - Image 5

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1983-03-03

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ARTS

The Michigan Daily

Thursday, March 3, 1983

Page 5

':Dreams can come true

By Larry Dean
' HE CALIFORNIA music scene has
undergone a major resurgence
these days. What with X wowing the
critics, the fans (including Bob Dylan,
who was sighted backstage at an X
how with son Zeke in tow), audience-
oers-hell, just about everyone except
the radio listeners and buyers, and the
silly and artificial hard-core bands
creating a stir-not to mention more
"sophisticated" outfits like Romeo
Void-the Californian circuit would
seem to be quite alive with vibrant new
music. -
The Dream Syndicate are not hard to
categorize. Indeed, that is perhaps the
easiest thing one can note about them:
their influences (Dylan, the Velvet Un-
Sierground, '60s psychedelia overall)
show through every speck of white-
noise guitar and twisted, ironic vocals.
Steve Wynn has his Lou Reed down flat
(no pun intended) and he knows it.
However, that doesn't stand in the
way of their ability to rise above mere
comparison. Their debut, The Days of
Wine and Roses, was a more than
unexpected surprise for me-it nearly
knocked me off my feet. "Tell Me When
1It's Over" kicks the whole glorious
conglom off and I knew from that
moment on that I had severely
misjudged them. Wynn is Reed-like,
yes, but his voice is more bemused than
cynical, and though the timbre is what'
causes most folks to compare him with
Reed, he sounds fresher and sincerely
unrehearsed (in a good manner-look
at how Rod Stewart's voice has
decayed, for example) than emulative.
Perhaps the best song on The Days of
Wine and Roses is a composition by
second guitarist Karl Precoda (a true

musician's moniker) called
"Halloween." Again, I was hesitant
when scanning the record jacket and
checking out these song titles, but once
it got down to the groove-thing, the
world was a better place. "Halloween"
is a sinister-sounding song, built up
from a quiet rhythm guitar to the in-
clusion of snatches, spits and bites of
raunchy, distort-o-matic feed-back lead
work; drummer Dennis Duck's skins-
work propels the whole schmeel along
metronomically. It is long and very
Underground-ish, but it has the benefit
of Chris D's (from the Flesh Eaters)
production and the thumping of Duck's
drums to let us know this is 1983. And
besides, there's that edge of timeliness
to The Dream Syndicate's music that
distinguishes them from bands of the
past; it's undescribeable, but it's there.
They have definitely come along at the
precise time.
The members of the group-besides
Wynn, Precoda, and Duck, there is
bassist Kendra Smith-came together
in January of 1982 to play their first gig
at the aptly-named Club Lingerie in
Hollywood. Soon afterward, they cut a
cheap demo tape in a friend's living-
room studio. Feeling assured and
believing in what they had going as
members of the Syndicate, they.
pressed a 12-inch EP on Wynn's own
Down There label, which promptly
gained them attention from a number
of local recording companies. Finally
signing with Ruby/Slash, they cut Wine
and Roses and the rest is (almost)
history.
This could be one of the finest bands
to emerge from the LA scene since The
Doors. Not only do they prompt critical
plaudits galore, but their live shows are
said to be great fun-good natured, in-

tense, rocking-everything you're not
supposed to expect from and up-and-
coming, fledgling band.
Commercial success does not seem a
real possibility for the Dream Syn-
dicate as of yet. Their music is too
"harsh-versus-hypnotic," too much a
study in contradictions to make it in the
big biz. Smith gives a pretty singing
performance on "Too Little, Too Late,"
very much like the Underground's
Nico, as a matter of fact, but even it, at
its gentlest, most lilting moments, isn't
radio fare. So let's hear it for non-radio
fare!
The Dream Syndicate are going to be
at Joe's Star Lounge tonight. The cost is
little - $4.50 at the door, which opens at
8-for what promises to be a lot of
musical entertainment. It Play is
opening up for Wynn and crew, and
that's a definite bonus.
The title song of The Days of Wine
and Roses rocks and rhymes like a
Dylan song; the voice sounds like Low
Reed impersonating Bobby Z. On a
good afternoon; the music sounds like
the Velvets meet the Strawberry Alarm
Clock and try to play like the Byrds;
this preview is trying to sound like
some positive hype for a very good new
band who happen to be bringing their
exciting new music to Ann Arbor
tonight.
Forget about that idiotical chem
paper-dump Chaucer-fling down
your paint brushes and see The Dream
Syndicate tonight. . . four folks who
rise to the challenge of shrugging off
favorable, but nonetheless limiting,
comparisons with the ease of playing
their own hot and inspired music. As
Wynn puts it: "People play this music,
not machines." Hoo-ray for that!

ANN r
L2 INDIVIDUAL THEATRES
50+ Aw at kibtrry Tit-97"
A comedy for
the incurably
romantic
SICK
DUDLEY MOORE
STAR OF "TEN"A "ARTHUR"
DAILY - 6:45, 8:30, 10:15
AWARD
15 ACADEMY,
NOMINATIONS
INCLUDING
BEST ACTRESS
MERYL STREEP
H1 V
. ,LLy
711
f.
SOPHIEFS
CHOICE
(R}
DA I LY. 6:4 5, 9:30
r

Dream Syndicate rocks at Joe's tonight.

WOMEN AND POWER
THURS., MAR. 3.8 PM
MARY KAY BLAKELY & JANE MYERS, JOURNALISTS
"THE POWER OF THE FEMALE WORD"
WOMEN'S LIVES
CONVERSATIONS ON HOW WOMEN GROW & CHANGE
Fri., March 4:
JEAN KING, As ACTIVIST ATTY. & FEMINIST ORGANIZER
At Noon
Lunch (Home-made Vegetable Soup) is available at $1.00
GUILD HOUSE, 842 Monroe (662-9184)
Program i3 sponsored by Guild House Campus Ministry and funded in part by Michigan
Commission/ United Ministries in higher education.

Debut for local

By Rob Weisberg
'iXtIDEO ART" and "perform-
ance art" - it must be hap-
pening on the coasts, right? Indeed it is,
but it's happening here too, as locals
will be able to discover when Perfor-
mance Network presents "Michigan
Video" (Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday
and Sunday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.).
Video art is the art of using a video
camera and possibly a microphone and
turning out something comprehensible
(not MTV) if not necessarily
recognizable. The technology has only
ecome accessible within the last
decade, but relative to filmmaking it's
cheap, convenient, and shockingly im-
mediate - one can view a piece
minutes after recording it. Consequen-
tly the art is spreading like wildfire,
and because it's so new, everybody has
a different way .of going about it.
"Video art has yet to be really
defined," says Performance Network
cofounder and "Michigan Video"
coproducer Michael Perry.
Although performance art is a much
older form than video - dating back to
the no-holds-barred art scene of the six-
ties (yes, Warhol was involved) and
before - it is even less definable. Most
often "performance art" brings to
mind "multimedia" - often invloving

media not associated with the.
traditional theater, including video,
and the dreaded term "avant-garde".
On this weekend's slate there are two
such works, both of which entail
audience participation - Tom Bloomer
and Len Farnsworth's Bunker One
(performed only on Saturday and Sun-
day), sort of "an exploration of nuclear
Psychology," according to Perry; and
Ralph Nire's Communion, which is
based on the relationship of an audience
to video. There will also be two in-
stallations which Perry terms "video
Sculptures," one of which will also in-
volve the audience.
Perry hopes this weekend's show will
lead to monthly performances at the
network beginning in the fall. An April
date is already set for which pieces will
be selected competitively. "There is a
void in Michigan for this sort of
showcasing," explains Perry. "Video is
showcased in some places-here we have
Ann Arbor Community Access
Television, which is a cosponsor of
"Michigan Video". Galleries around
Detroit periodically showcase a single

video
artist alone or as a part of another
show. This is an attempt to centralize a
scattered performance and video art
field that does exist in the Detroit and
Ann Arbor area and around the state."
The Network got the video ball rolling
last fall with a very successful presen-
tation of the San Francisco Video
Festival's touring show. Perry hopes
the interest that that event created will
carry over to this weekend's show. In
the long run, success could mean fun-
ding via grants- the Network currently
is totally self-sufficient with regular
video performances, and a general
"support system" for local artists.
Community Access' Martha Schmidt
even has hopes for a touring show. Then
everyone will know it's happening here,
too.

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WORL

- r
A POETRY READING BY
CZESLAW MILOSZ
Visiting Walgreen Professor
THURSDAY, March 3, 1983, at 7:30 p.m.
RACKHAM AMPHITHEATER
(FOURTH FLOOR, RACKHAM SCHOOL OF GRADUATE STUDIES)
CzeslawMilosz, the 1980 Nobel Laureate for literature,
will read his own poetry in the Polish original.
English translations will also be presented.
THE PUBLIC IS CORDIALLY INVITED

HOUSING DIVISION
y WEST QUADRANGLE
RESIDENT STAFF APPLICATIONS FOR SPRING/SUMMER 1983
AVAILABLE STARTING FEBRUARY 28. 1983 IN 1500 S.A.B.
POSITIONS INCLUDE: Resident Director and Resident Advisor
Advisory positions require the completion of a minimum of 48 undergraduate credit
hours toward program for Resident Advisory positions; Graduate status for Resident
Director positions. Qualified undergraduate applications may be considered for the
Resident Director positions.
QUALIFICATIONS: (1) Must be a registered U of M student on the Ann Arbor Campus
during the period of employment. (2) Must have completed a minimum of 48 under-
graduate credit hours toward program by the end of the 1982 Fall Term. (3) Preference
will be given to applicants who have lived in the residence halls at the University level
..for at least one year. (4) Undergraduate applicants must have a minimum of a 2.50
cumulative grade point average in the school or college in which they are enrolled.
Graduate applicants must be in good academic standing in the school or college in which
they are:enrolled. (5) Preference is given to applicants who do not intend to carry heavy
.,academic schedules and who do not have rigorous outside commitments. (6) Consider-
'ation will only be given to qualified applicants who will be available both Spring/
Summer Terms. (7) Proof of these qualifications will be required.
/^..........t ..4-" ___J ..tLw.. .....-. :w....l.+ -....t ____ tw tL:- - Jwww.-. wt ... rwn... ieww iwwtewrw.

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Individuals with strong backgrounds in the
following disciplines should consider
joining our 35-person engineering team;
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0 Applications sore for home computers
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" Digital and analog electronic hardware
design
* VLSI custom circuit design
" Computer music and sound development
General computer is located in Cambridge,
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We will be on campus Monday, March 7th,
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