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October 21, 1986 - Image 7

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1986-10-21

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ARTS
Tuesday, October 21, 1986

The Michigan Daily

pag4 7

Game

Theory: Play hard,

play fair

By Julie Jurrjens
Game Theory's Real Night -
time LP was one of 1985 indie
pop's finest moments. Their current
LP, The Big Shot Chronicles,
6n Rational records, may well rank
similarly in 1986. The San
Francisco-based band's leader,
Scott Miller, has emerged as one of
the most promising songwriters in
Fecent memory, occasionally
getting shackled with the dreaded
"New Dylan" tag. Big Shot has
unusual range for a rock record,
from the breezy pop of "Erica's
Word" to the spooky, experimental
"Like A Girl Jesus."
a Recently, The Daily spoke to
Miller, who will perform with his
band tonight at the BlindPig. The
Pig should be crowded if last year's
show is any gauge. Should be wild,
too, so plan to waltz the halls,
crawl the walls, whatever... The
local band Raygun's Brain opens,
tix avaliable at the door.
Daily: It's been around a year
.since you last recorded-- have you
started recording the next LP yet?
Miller: I'm writing it and it's
pretty close to being completed.
We'll record in a couple of months
maybe, but there's no great rush
since it's not going to be released
for a year. I might as well have the
ideas there to refine before I go and
record.
D: Do you look at Big Shot
differently now since it was recorded
over a year ago, yet was just
"recently released?
M: Do you mean have I started to
hate it yet? No, it still sounds
really good to me. It was sort of
designed that way. It's the sort of
record that takes stock of my
musical background, rather than
going out and trying something
,super different, which the next one
might be. I really wanted to to do
sort of a pre-packaged Great Record,
at least as great as I co il4 make
It
D: Then you're thinking about
doing something really wacked-out
next time out?
M: Well, on the wacked-out side.
Probably a lot of experimental
recording techniques. I love multi-
track recording, it's a real
interesting thing to do. I may
eventually produce Game Theory
records. I do half the production
with Mitch (Easter), he does a lot
of the engineering but we both
make the creative decisions. I think
d4yitch will produce the next, too. I
hear tell he wants to do it. I know I
want him to do it.
D:Bassist Suzi Ziegler left. Why
and who's in her place now?
IV: Suzi is gone, she's got this
'new boyfriend in a band called
Slovenly who subsequently signed
to SST. She really fell in love with
him and decided his band was a lot
better than the band she was in.
She's not playing with them now,
rbut I think she wanted to. Now we
have this guy named Guy Gassuan,
who was formerly in the New
,Breed, out of San Francisco, and
this woman named Donette Thayer,
who was in a band called the
Veil-she plays guitar and does
most of the backing vocals, which
is where we were a little weak
J ceodre- I wanted somebody who
; could really sing. It helps on the

" dual guitar parts, too, those twin
ZZ Top leads! ... We do "More
than a Feeling" now- no, not
really. We are doing "Kung Fu
fighting"-seriously!
D: So it's time for Game Theory
to lead the '70s revival, starting
with the next record, huh?
M: , Gee, you know, that might
not be a bad idea... Well, it does
have a lot of that Rat guitar sound
on it, the Rat distortion device, but
it's not going to be all that heavy,
it'll still have songs like "24" and
all that because that's the way I
write, that's the way my mind
works. A pretty melody is still the
basis of a song for me. I think I an
going to get a little more carried
away, though. If I really want to do
something that sounds unusual I

Album type of thing, go crazy in
the studio. I listen to records now
and think generally the less time
they spend in the studio, the less I
tend to like them. I really have
decided to like these sweated-over
monster albums. I'd like to do three
weeks in the studio next time
instead of 8 days. But it's not like
we're going to fly to Kyoto or
anything to do it...
D: Do you feel any pressure to get
hits, to really become mega-stars?
M: I think I'll jolly well do the
kind of music I want and don't feel
any huge debt of gratitude to the
record company, who are out for
themselves. My band seems plenty
happy with my music. They know
that Game Theory is not this really
hit-oriented thing. I have a couple
of things that it seems might be
hits, for the next record. But then I
also have a couple of these real
objectionable "Like a Girl Jesus"
type songs. Radio programmers
seem not to like that one. People
give me weird looks for it.
Sometimes I have to pinch myself
and remind myself that I still am
this person that a lot of society
would object to if they paid
attention to my lyrics... even
though there are lots of more
objectionable bands.
D: Do you think if you did get a
hit you'd have to phase that aspect
of your records out?
M: No, because if we did get a hit
I'm sure it'd have been an accident
and we'd probably end up going
downhill from there anyway. But I

want to go downhill with music I
can sleep at night knowing I've
made. It's entirely chance. I have to
go with the best ideas I have and
sometimes the best ideas I have
sound like hits. But sometimes I'll
be really pleased with myself for
coming up with something that's
really disturbing sounding. You can
get real tired of doing that kind of
surface sounding thing.
Right now I'm going to try and
produce my Sgt. Pepper album,
my This Year's Model, what
have you, and if at the end of that it
still looks bleak I may take it-,back
to the home taping stage and not
drag other people into this. But
right now, I think we're at a real
good non-hype stage. We do well
on the sort of 'cool' circuits,
college radio, and all that. We don't
get enough press for critical
backlash or anything. There's been
no lash, so there's been no
backlash.
D: How do you approach playing
live?
M: It'd be great if bands, no matter
how big they got, would keep
playing the same size place, and
just let the shows get more and
more riot oriented! I really like
playing and I really like the chance
to get wild on stage instead of
things being very controlled in the
studio. You get a toned-down
version of a song in the studio,
with every hair in place, and then
an overblown version on stage,
which I think is just fine, that's
what rock is all about.

Rational/Enigma recording artists Game Theory will be returning to the Blind Pig tonight. Pictured
above are (left to right) Shelley LaFreniere, Guy Gassaun, Scott Miller, Donette Thayer, and Gil
Ray. Showtime is set for 10 p.m.
getacuanted with TallyHalMnh

.. X

Troughout October, Tally Hall
invites you to get acquainted with
our International Food Court and enjoy
20% off* the regular price of any food
item all month, after 6:00 p.m.

Street Forum presents
_ _ _ An Evening With Senator

Carl Levin
"Shooting Straight from the
Hill"
Senator Carl Levin will give his
overview of the hot issues currently
being debated on Capitol Hill. An open
question and answer period will follow
his address.
Thurs. Oct. 23 " 7:30 p.m.
Hillel Auditorium
1429 Hill Street * 663-3336
Practicing Pharm. D.'s discuss
Car eer Optins
for
Doctor of Pharmacy Graduates
A U-M College of Pharmacy seminar
open to all students
Tuesday, Oct. 21-7 -9 p.m.
3554 C. C. Little Bldg.
(corner or Church & Geddes)
College staff members will be present to answer questions about
admissions to U-M Doctor of Pharmacy program.

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Come get to know us!
Liberty U
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Cafes Shops
A N N A R B OR

HOURS-Food Court: MonSat: 11 am-11 midnight, Sun: 1 am-9 pm.
Retail: Mon-Wed: 9:30 am-5:30 pm. Thuir-Frri: 930"am-9 pm,- "
Sat: 9:30 am-S:30 pm, Sun: 12 noon-S pm.

C O U P O N)w "7
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I Good Oct..--Oct..31.

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Consider a Career
in ommunications...
Marketing New Media Products
Communication Law and Policy
Broadcast and Motion Picture Management
Advertising and Public Relations
Managing Cable and Satellite Services
Designing Media Campaigns
Research on Media Markets and Audiences
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Telecommunications in Business or Non-Profits
If you're interested in any of these, come to a talk and Q&A about professional oppor-
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ALL MAJORS ARE WELCOME

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