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March 08, 1985 - Image 5

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The Michigan Daily, 1985-03-08

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ARTS
e Michigan Daily Friday, March 8, 1985 Page 5

Todd's
By Hobey Echlin

IT TAKES an incredible amount of
talent and an even greater sense of
originality to be successful in modern
music today. Bands like U2, R.E.M.,
and the Violent Femmes are three
examples of bands that have clung to a
rootsy originality and confidence in ad-
ding their own chapters to modern
music. A fourth example is Crosswire,
well on their way to establishing their
own genre in contemporary music.
Crosswire is a collaboration of the
members of two of the best American
hardcore bands of the last five years,
Negative Approach and the Allied.
These were two of the bands that helped
establish Detroit as one of the strongest
hardcore punk scenes in America over
the last five years. But hardcore has
worn its thrash existence thin.
And so, with the breakup of Negative
Approach following their "Tied Down"
LP in 1983, and with the dissolution of the
Allied in 1984, some of the founders of
the Detroit hardcore scene found them -
selves disillusioned with the floun-
dering scene and the now cliche thrash

gets wir
sound.
Then last September, Bud Burcar of
the Allied joined with old N.A. mem-
bers Chris Moore and Rob McCulloch
and with bassist Kurt Marshky to form
Crosswire. The result has been one of
the most dynamic compilations of for-
mer hardcore players since the
critically acclaimed Rank and File
formed in 1981.
Chris Moore writes most of
Crosswire's original songs on guitar
and sings, while Rob McCullough plays
lead guitar in a manner far removed
from the fuzzy power chords of his N.A.
days. Kurt Marshky adds a solid
backup to Chris and Rob's harmonic
guitar leads, and also adds to the sound
with several high-note bass lines, ala
Violent Femmes. Bud Burcar displays
extraordinary talent as Crosswire's
drummer, as he provides sound footing
for the band's varying tempos and
changing needs, while his drumming
adds an element to the band in his
precise execution that make him
almost a "lead" drummer.
Before you expect these guys to be
able to walk on water, understand their
average age is about 20, with Bud being

the oldest at 22, and they've only been
together for about 5 months. Chris is as
new to guitar as Kurt is to being in a
band.
But the point is, Crosswire is the kind
of band that can come out of a practice
session with new songs strictly from
improvisation, as well as from the
talented song writing of Chris and Rob.
Their hardcore roots work in two ways.
They are as experienced and
professional as you can get without
being legally able to drink, and as
primed for innovation in producing
something much more substantial than
typical trash. Don't think of them as
hardcore-gone-80's or techno, like the
Effigies. All have done away with the
hardcore fads and only Rob still sports
a bleached head of hair, maybe because
it won't grow out fast enough. But when
you're that good, who gives a damn
what you look like.
With influences ranging from the
post-punk U2 and R.E.M. to the pre-
punk Damned and Stiff Little Fingers
and shying away from the cliches in
between, you can be sure thisis no copy
band, Theirs is a sound as novel as U2
- with every song that seems to

suggest too prevalent as influence come
two more that squelch that notion and
confirm their originality.
So far Crosswire has been somewhat
limited to playing bars, opening for
bands ranging from typical Heavy
Metal to the Butthole Surfers. This
hasn't stopped audiences from being
unusually receptive to their expanding
twelve-song set. The fact is, Crosswire
is so new that you can't help but ap-
preciate them, no matter who they
warm up for.
Right now Crosswire is lining up
several dates at Michigan State and
Central Universities, and hopes to play
Ann Arbor, possibly at the Halfway Inn
or a club, in hopes of bringing their
sound to the college mind.
This evening Crosswire will be
playing their own show at Todd's bar at
8139 7 mile, West of Gratiot. Such
shows, Bud explained, will give audien-
ces a better taste of the band, as
Crosswire will have infinite freedom to
play their set without time limitations
or other hamperings. Experience what
may be the band of the 80's and perhaps
the most deserving band since U2, the
new Crossfire.

'ed for sound

Ensemble benefits from diverse approach

Folk Fest star returns
Texas singer-songwriter Nanci Griffith, who made a big splash in her Ann
Arbor debut at last month's Folk Festival, will make her first appearance at
The Ark this evening. A sort of homier version of Joni Mitchell, Griffith has
been a rising star on the folk scene for the last few years.

lw

By Neil Galanter
He had to moonlight as a taxi driver
at one point in order to keep his ensem-
ble together and to keep food on his
table, Formerly a junior high school
teacher, Michael Feldman now is the
head of the St. Luke's Chamber En-
semble, which he founded ten years
ago. The twenty piece ensemble, which
is made up of twenty highly skilled
chamber musicians and "ensemble-
players", will be performing here for us
in Ann Arbor, this evening at 8:30 at
Rackham Auditorium.
Some "M & M's" and a "Z" believe it
or not will represent the composers on
the evening's fare. The "Z" stands for
Ellen Taaffe Zwilich's Double String
Quartet, and out "M&M's" are a
Mozard Divertimento, and a Men-
delssohn Octet, which is also a double
string quartet. Although the repetoire

that the group will perform for us in
Ann Arbor is standard for the most part
(minus the Zwilich of course), the en-
semble has a list of activities, projects,
and ideas which go beyond the or-
dinary. They have toured with the ever-
so-popular Vienna Boys Choir and
played with the Twyla Tharp dance
company. Opera takes a part of their
life too because this season they will be
playing their Carnegie Hall Debut and
using Handel's Operas as their
vehicles.
Feldman claims that the groups goal
is to, "weld all of their various ac-
tivities into an institution with its own
home, a secure financial base, and a
full-time salaried employment for its
core players, as well as new activities
for the associates of the group. We CAN
be all things to all people,",he insists.
The group is definitely all things and
by doing all things they end up getting
a much larger, wider and broader

audience than those chamber ensem-
bles which only play the standard
material. St. Luke's has a wide audien-
ce which includes children, for by in-
stituting a myriad of programs for
children called "Children's Free
Opera", (in response to severe cuts in
New York City Schools Arts Programs)
they have attracted over530,000 school
age youngsters during the past eight
years. Presently, the ensemble is proud
to be the city's prime arts program
provider for children. Even more sur-
prising, the chamber group could even
end up attracting some of today's
teenagers. Feldman claims that com-

missioning an opera from a major rock
star is among the ensembles very near
future plans. Michael Jackson and
Stevie Wonder are justttwo of the
possible stars to be contacted.
Sounds worth checking out doesn't it?
Well, no problem at all. Tickets are still
available in all price ranges, the top
seat only costing $10 and the lowest
price seat a mere $5. You can get them 4
at the door or at Burton Tower in the
ticket office of the University Musical
Society. Remember, concert time is
8:30 p.m. in the spaciously seated
Rackham Auditorium. It should be a
more than interesting evening.

,r

4
4

}

kinko's IRISH
The Campus Copy Shop
LIGHT GREEN PAPER 40
DARK G REEN PAPER 50
THROUGH MARCH 15th
Open 7 days a week/Mon.-Thur. till midnight.
540 E. LIBERTY ST. 761-4539
Corner of Maynard and liberty

-,,,,

ii

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'Rigoletto' done masterfully

WANT TO GET INVOLVED IN YOUR
STUDENT UNION?
The Michigan Union Board of Representatives, comprised of stu-
dents, staff, faculty, and alumni, provides policy and user advice
in the operation and planning of The Michigan Union.
MUBR has nine student positions open for 1985-1986. Both grad-
uate and undergraduate students are eligible.
BENEFITS INCLUDE:
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-practical experience in policy setting, public relations,
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Applications and Information Sheets available at the
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APPLICATIONS DUE THURSDAY, MARCH 14, 1985

%P -w w w W W W W w w w w w w w w ~
U U

By Mike Gallatin
T he use of subtitles familiar to
audiences of- opera on television is'
a relative rarity in live productions.
One of Beverly Sills most interesting
innovations as musical director of The
New York City Opera National Com-
pany is the introduction of English sub-
titles for live performances. Verdi's
Rigoletto performed at the Power Cen-
ter Tuesday evening is one such an ex-
periment and a successful one at that.
The final effect, rather than distrac-
ting, is to clarify the action onstage
without interfering with the dramatic
flow of the plot. In Beverly Sills' own
words, "We've broken the biggest ob-
stacle to enjoying opera; the langauge
barrier." In opera, emotional situations
are crystallized into lyric sections
where vocal display and spectacle take
precedence over story-line, but in this
case there is much to be said for the
discriminate use of subtitles explaining
the narrative material of the recitative.
The orchestra in the pit was a bit
small, which at moments failed t'o
highlight some of the symphonic in-
terludes preceeding each act though
there did result a quality of sound. In
Verdi's opera, the orchestra itself is
another protagonist of the drama ad-
ding touches of color, such as the
lightning flashes of the piccolo in the
storm scene of Act IV. Recurring
themes or motifs generally do not iden-
tify a person or an idea but serve in-
stead to recall a previous occasion in
the opera. More than just serving to
remind the audience of this previous
occasion, it also serves to remind the
characters on stage. Moreover, there
are few pauses for seco recitative or
cadences strategically placed for ap-
plause. Rather, the incidents blend
together in the 19th* century's finest
realization of continuous opera of a non-
Wagnerian variety.
The melodramatic aspects of the
libretto afford some amusement in
mode:rn day. While originally offending
the censors, the moral of the story with
its oversimplistic definitions of good
and evil, belief in superstition, and
hackneyed conception of feminine vir-

tue now appears more comic than
anything else. In this respect
Sparafucile, the paid assasin, as played
by Gregory Stapp, added an almost
light-hearted touch to his "Honor
among thieves" aria to his daughter,
Maddalena in Act IV. His .charac-
terization of villiany as the apotheosis
of the incarnation of evil comes across
more as a Dickenesque caricature than
as a Mefistofele. His final escape, like
Iago's in Otello, is a concession to
Italian melodrama that you can catch
the devil but you can't hold him.
Rigoletto himself is troubled by his
inability to avoid the repercussions of
the original curse by Monterone. Mark
Rucker struggles with the role of the
Fool gone wrong with admirable
tenacity and his bewilderment at being
unable to change the course of his
unhappy fate came across with the
required pathos. Gilda's high point, as
sung by Candace Goetz, was her duet
in Act II with the disguised Duke's
departure, "Addio, addio, speranza ed
anima" (Farewell, farewell, my hope
and spirit). The soprano's sensitivity to
the pity and terror aspects of this duet
in her coloratura was truly chilling. She
was but one excellent example of how
well-talented, young professionals can
do under the proper veteran direction of
legendary greats like Beverly Sills.

/- *
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