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March 07, 1986 - Image 17

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The Michigan Daily, 1986-03-07
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Plan 9 mixes past blasts, new sounds

Granville: Ohio's little Ft. Laude

Plan 9-- Keep Your Cool and
Read the Rules
This nifty slice of psycho-grunge
sounds like it stepped intact from an
obscure corner of 1971. It is
astonishingly, brazenly true to its
heavy guitar ancestors, and falters
only when the synthesizer can't aptly
mimic the sound of a real organ.
But this isn't just a heavy-duty slab
of dinosaur rock, it also features a
couple nifty departures. "Machines"
features Devo-like synth work, a nifty
Indian-style drone, and affected
vocals. "Face in the Box" features
great sounding slide-guitar work, and
a nice, sycopated drumbeat.
Plan 9 manages to keep one foot
firmly planted in the revivalist
movement, but the other foot roams
free, stopping off arbitrarily, and it is
this combination that distinguishes
Plan 9 from the legion of retro-
rockers, and makes Keep Your Cool
-John Logie
Sweet Honey In The
Rock Feel Something
Drawing Me on (Flying Fish)
It is easy to forget the power of
voices raised in song. Yes, there are
voices and then there are voices.
Sweet Honey in the Rock are clearly
at the top of their game on their
acapella gospel collection entitled
Feel Something Drawing Me On.
Founded and led by singer/activist
Dr. Bernice Johnson Reagon, Sweet
Honey in the Rock uses this half of a
tandem release (the other LP, The
Other Side, shows the political side of
their repetoire) to celebrate the colors
of praise in the sacred song of Afro-
Americans and Africans.
One standout track is actually from
the white gospel tradition, a
Protestant hymn titled "Father, I

Stretch My Hand To Thee." This song
is transformed by a singing device
called "lining-out," in which notes are
held and savored, with
various singers pushing the note for-
ward one after another. One can
imagine birds in flight, streaking
ahead and then falling behind,
creating indelible images out of a
progression of moments.
"When I Die Tomorrow" is patter-
ned after a song performed by a
Liberian congregation. Here the
voices bounce off one another in a
marvelous swirl that builds off of and
blends with the pronounced vocal per-
cussion. This song is paired with the
West African funeral song
"Meyango" to wind up side one.
"Meyango" is harsh where "When I
Die . . ." is soothing, bluntly
declarative in a way that is at once
jarring and arresting.
More that simply a display of vocal
prowess, Feel Something Drawing Me
On powerfully and tangibly conveys
the emotional exuberance of the per-
formance. Moving from the con-
trolled precision of the R&B vocal
group style to the ebuillence of the
gospel ensemble with equal faculty,
Sweet Honey in the Rock has made an
album that manages to touch the
heart while lifting the spirit.
- Jeff Stanzler

I WAS HAVING trouble deciding
whether to go torone of the "in"
places for spring break-Daytona
Beach, Aspen, Ft. Lauderdale-but
my difficult decision was made in-
finitely easier when my friend Joe
suggested I stay with him and his
family in Granville, Ohio. I quickly
accepted Joe's invitation.
I spent seven days in Granville
(population approximately 3500); it
seemed more like six days but time
sure flies when you're having non-
stop, wacky, college-style spring break
When I came back from Granville,
a bunch of my friends who vacationed
in Ft. Lauderdale complained about
the weather in Florida. I smiled and
said "Aww, I feel for all those
Michigan students who didn't get
tan." The whole Ft. Lauderdale con-
tingent thought I was unduly hostile,
and agreed amongst themselves that I
made the comment only because I
was "stuck in Ohio over break."
What a bunch of groundless bunk.
Granville is a city rich in history, and
it has a library with hundreds of
volumes. Sure, it may not be
recognized as a spring hotspot, but
that's one of the main reasons I went
there. (I also didn't have enough

money to go anywhere else). See, we
people who are knowledgeable about
Granville know that Granville is sort
of a downscale Ft. Lauderdale
without the crowds, sweat, and high-
priced accomodations. For example,
a hotel on the strip in Ft. Lauderdale
might cost $100 a night. It didn't cost
me a penny to sleep at Joe's. Student
who stay in hotels in spring break hot-
spots tend to squeeze five or six people
into one room; for most of the studen-
ts that means sleeping on the har-
dwood floor. In Granville, however I
slept comfortably on a couch.
When my friends launched into a
discussion of their wild, beer-infested
revelries in Lauderdale bars I kept
down the urge to embarrass them by
telling stories about my own non-stop,
wacky, spring break fun.
I have repressed the urge long
One day Joe, his dad and I went to
Value City to buy Joe a pair of
sneakers (in the northeast we call
tennis shoes tennis shoes and other
varieties of shoes sneakers). The
selection was amazing. And the
prices? Well, they don't call it Value
City for nothing.
Value City was abuzz with activity.
There were people in every row of the
store examining merchandise. At the
very same time there were people
paying for things. One woman bought
a garbage can liner. People who were
neither examining nor paying for
merchandise left through the sliding
door exit, but one little kid tried to go
out the 'in' doors. That sure got his
mom mad.
While all this was taking place, Bill

Widlow, the floor manager, barked
out the day's specials and valuable in-
formation about the Value City
Layaway Plan. Turns out that for
most of the Value City furniture you
need only put five dollars down. Joe's
dad didn't been any furniture, but he
was just as caught up in the ex-
citement as Joe and I were. He almost
bought a coffee table.
It took a day or four of sitting
around before Joe and I recovered
from our trip to Value City. Don't
think for a second that we didn't have
non-stop, wacky, spring break fun
during our recovery. Joe's mom
bought us the ingredients for Oat-
meal/Bran Cookies, which we made
with hot Top-40 jams blaring from the
radio. Once our strength was back.
however, there wasn't a cookie recipe
in the word that could keep us college
nuts from hitting the bar scene.
Granville doesn't have a bar.
We road-tripped to Neward, Ohio
and went to a bar called Wendell P's.
Tuesday isn't a big bar night in
Newark, which was fine by us becuase
we all know what a pain it is to be in a
crowded bar with all the pushing, and
the slow service.
We ordered canned beer (they
didn't serve bottles, or beer on tap)
and the waitress brought it right over
to us. No wait. Around 11, things star-
ted to get moving. A guy came in and
looked around and left. At 11:30 two
people came in and sat down. When
Joe and I talked at the same time they
did, it sounded like a huge crowd.
Any college student knows the first-
class chow, is an important part of
non-stop, wacky, college-type spring

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Some peop/e say That the rest of' Ohio
someplace to stop on the way to Granvile.
break fun, so Joe and I left Wendell
P's and went to Pizza Hut, which was
right next door. Talk about full. We
got an extra large pan pizza with two
toppings. And Pizza Hut cola.
Our waitress turned out to be from
Granville and I asked her what she
liked most about the city. She an-

David Torn-Best
Plans (ECM)



David Torn is not just another hot
guitar player on the scene. Along with
incredible chops, Torn shows style,
empathy, and the compositional skills
of a mature player.
Best Laid Plans is Torn's first
album as a leader, and Torn hasn't
allowed himself to be subjugated by
changing his tone or style to suit
ECM's style (see Steve Tibbits, Bill
Frisell). His roots are in rock, and the
guitarists he most reminds one of are
Van Halen, Holdsworth, Hendrix anc
a bit of Fred Frith. He combines Eno-



The 80s have been narked by a return to traditional values, so Plan 9 put this portrait ol afamily harhecue on their record.

715 Brooks St.
(adjacent to Mack School)
New Swim Sessions Begin March 15, 1986
. Ann Arbor
Call 994-2898 nar or
for further Park s &
information Recreation

ish atonal power washes with in-
credibly fluid legato work (ala Allan
Holdsworth). Fans of Robert Fripp
will appreciate the "Hum Of Its Par-
ts" which sounds like a modern Hen-
drix tune. Other memorable pieces
are "Two Face Flash" with stinging
harmelodics and lagato work as well
as "Before The Bitter Wind" with
Torn's co-conspirator, Geoffrey Gor-
don flailing away at the trops.
-Jay Dorrance
The Fabulous
Thunderbirds - Tuff
Enuff (CBS)
Brothers can be a real pain in the
ass. And Jimmie Vaughn has a big
identity problem, thanks to his little
brother, Stevie Ray Vaughan.
01' Jimmie has been bouncing
around Texas for years garnering a
bit of critical acclaim and limited
record sales while Stevie's stock has
skyrocketed. But big brother Jim-
mie shows more originality, and with
the Fab Thunderbirds latest effort
Tuff Enuff, Jimmie might make a few
people forget about his "famous"

The Thunderbirds' sound is funky,I
Texas rhythm and blues with Jimmie1
Vaughan's guitars heavily influenced
by roots bluesmen like Albert King
and Jimmie Reed. The sound here is
tough, with a rockabilly beat provided
by producer Dave Edmunds. Tuff
Enuff opens up with the title cut, a
real rocker. Another hot pick is "Am-
nesia" with Geraint Watkins on ac-
"Wrap It Up," an Isaac Hayes
cover is a great choice given a rock-
out treatment. The show closing in-
strumental, "Down At Antones"
shows off the other half of the
Vaughan family on guitar. Watch out
little bro, big bro's coming through.
- Jay Dorrance
Jimi Hendrix -
Hendrix Plays Monterey
Even though Jimi Hendrix has
been dead 15 years, Reprise continues
to release material, making Hendrix
one of their most prolific artists (in

terms of albums released). In the
past this has led to some real gems,
The Cry Of Love, Live At Isle Of
Wight, and some incredible dogs, like
Crash Landing, etc.
Lately Reprise has shown a little
more respect by recalling and con-
solidating the Hendrix catalog. Hen-
drix Plays Monterey deserves to
stand on its own merits. This is one of
the most amazing sets of music ever
played. Although six of the nine cuts
were previously available, this album
has been packaged so well, it's a
"must have" for the Hendrix af-
"Killing Floor," the album's
opener, may be Hendrix's best guitar
showcase. He pulls out all the stops
All the Hendrix classics are covered,
from "Foxey Lady" and "Hey Joe" to
"Purple Haze." And the songs still
have their original life and power,
they're not burned by overplay.
Hendrix fans will, of course, buy
this album - but the rest of you, take
note ! Go get this one. It's hot !
- Jay Dorrance

(Continued from Page 4)
times, as on most of the other tracks.
The lyrics can be weak at times, as on
"i Can't Spell Romance," or "Your
Aces With Me" (both of which rely on
simple, hokey phrases)' but when the
playing gets hot, like on the in-
strumental "Roman Fingers," these
Ruins last okay.
- Beth Fertig
Clannad - "In a
Lifetime" (RCA)
A beautifully textured single,
comprised of the Irish band Clannad
and U2's Bone, and off the album
Macalla. The melody is soft and gen-
tle, with light and airy keyboards and
a springy bassline to hold it up.
Maire Brennan's sweet-but-strong
vocals work well with Bono's tremen-
dous power reserve - and both
singers seem exceptionally con-
trolled. However, the words are very
unclear, as the vocals are meant to
servemore as instruments in this at-
mospheric piece than as means of
verbal communication. "In a
Lifetime" is a very pretty duet which
may be lush musically, but is never
- Beth Fertig
Carla Bley -
Night Glow

out" but to meI
something special
Carla Bley's music.
play by the rules,

there's always dismiss Night Glow as pop-jazz trash
in keyboardist haven't taken the time to listen.
Bley refuses to
and those who The personnel is a combination of

west coast session-slickers with some
odd touches tossed in (Paul McCan-
dless, Steve Swallow). For most of
the LP the music alternately sooths
and prods your ears with Bley extrac-
ting incredible harmonies from the
all-star brass section. Side Two is
dominated by the "Wildlife Suite",
("Horns", "Paws Without Claws",
and "Sex With Birds"). Steve


546 Packard
Is sa ma as U....as

Deep Dish Sicilian Pizza wi
~12" X1
Ioz ~$ 6

Some neonle might call this a "sell- Carla Bley' s ','ight Glo w ' is no sell-out.

8 Weeked-'-March 7,1986

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