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December 03, 1990 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1990-12-03

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The Michigan Daily - Monday, December 3, 1990 - Page 7

a mell
like fish
by Brian Jarvinen
0 K, Classic Rock Quiz time:
What was the first band to emerge
4m the break-up of Jefferson Air-
plane way back when? No, it wasn't
tie sappy Jefferson Starship, it was
Hot *@#%in' Tuna, mann, and
While the Airplane have been reduced
to a two-song footnote on the radio
and the requisite greatest-hits CD
package, Hot Tuna is alive and well,
blowing minds and tiny bar-rooms
idto the stratosphere from coast to
Hot Tuna formed as a vehicle for
Airplane guitarist Jorma Kaukonen
and Jack Casady, musical pals since
their high school days in the '50s, to
play all of the classic blues, folk,
hard country, urban blues and what-
ever else caught their fancy. In a
decade punctuated with numerous
new guitar virtuosos the likes of
Hendrix, Page, Clapton and Garcia,
, aukonen quickly gained his own
'putation for brilliant electric leads
and intense finger-pickin' acoustic
work. Many fans are still occasion-
ally convinced that Jorma's fingers
are doing the talking, but many oth-
ers who listen to Hot Tuna get lost
with a huge smile trying to absorb
the intricacies Casady fills the lower
frequencies with.
After a lot of touring and numer-
*us albums on RCA throughout the
'70s, Hot Tuna relaxed their efforts
slightly in the '80s. Kaukonen re-
leased solo albums on Relix records,
including Quah, which some of his
devoted fans consider the best exam-
ple of his prowess on the acoustic
guitar. But Jorma & Jack were soon
together again, playing in an electric
four-piece or as an acoustic duo a lit-
,Ae more often.

"Ain't you glad that shotgun blast was only in a movie Dennis?" "Yeah
Peter I sure am."

The two of them appeared in this
manner at Sully's in Dearborn last
spring; shortly before the encore one
excited head blurted out "acoustic
space music mann here we go!," and
I couldn't have coined a better de-
scription myself. Jorma & Jack
filled Sully's with an awesomely
complex sound that went far beyond
anything Pink Floyd has done with
any amount of electronics since
"Green Is the Color."
Of course tonight at the Blind
Pig they will be playing an electric
show but it could easily be as in-
tense. Over the course of two shows
it would be surprising if they repeat
anything from their large repertoire.
Recently, a major label (Epic) fig-
ured out that Kaukonen and Casady
can still play circles around most
rock "musicians" and that a very
happy audience still loves Hot Tuna
for it.
Their new album, Pair A Dice
Found, at first sounds like the tense
efforts of a band who don't want to
screw up, but it quickly grows on
Campus Building.) Snow is Jan.
28th. For more info. call 668-8397.
The Ann Arbor Civic Theater
is auditioning for the musical
comedy She Loves Me on Sunday
Dec. 9th and Monday Dec. 10th at 7
p.m. at the A.A.C.T., 1035 S.
Main. Two female and six male
singer/actors are needed. For more
info. call 662-9405.

the listener, especially Kaukonen's
"Happy Turtle Song," an acoustic
instrumental that immediately brings
to mind his incredibly soothing
work on Burgers. That song and two
covers, "Parchman's Farm" and "San
Francisco Bay Blues," have been
kicking around Tuna set lists for
awhile now.
Their new single, a well-timed
cover of "Eve of Destruction," may
or may not earn them more than
trivia-question-answer status on clas-
sic radio. Whether our country will
wake up to a morning of reconstruc-
tion remains to be seen, but depress-
ing Time magazine cover stories
will be the last thing on anyone's
mind at the Pig tonight.

Continued from page 5
Betty Boo
By making an irresistible blend
of the closely-related genres of rap,
house and disco, Betty Boo has cre-
ated an instantly likeable record with
Boomania. Like the cartoon art on.
the sleeve, it's bright, energetic and
Although just about every song
on the record is a well-crafted gem,
"Doin' the Do (7" Radio Mix)" is
especially good. Structured like most
current rap songs (rap verse/sung or
sampled chorus/verse/chorus /bridge/
chorus, etc.), this tune is an instant
dance classic. Other outstanding
tunes include "Hey DJ/I Can't Dance
(To That Music You're Playing)"
and "Where Are You Baby?" which
should have an dance floor sweating
profusely. t
Despite the tight music and
Boo's excellent vocal delivery, how-
ever, some of the songs suffer from
a lack of depth. This is especially
true in the lyric department, where
the topics are restricted to love and
boasting. (I can't count the number
of times the words "Betty Boo" ap-
pear on this record). Also, some of
the songs are a bit too simplistic,
making Boo sound like a hipper ver-
sion of Paula Abdul at times. After
all, just a verse and a chorus do not a
great song make.
Yet these are very minor
complaints, especially to dance mu-
sic enthusiasts. As Janet Jackson
said, "Gimme a beat." This Boo
does, and very well.
-Mike Molitor
The Pogues
Hell's Ditch
Produced by Joe Strummer,
Hell's Ditch returns to a rougher,
folkier sound than Peace and Love.
Traditional Celtic forms are spiced
up with international flavor, giving
the album the feel of a travelog by
the London-Irish buccaneers. Hell's
Ditch takes up where "Turkish Song
of the Damned" left off, with its
Mediterranean temperament and
southern sanguiness.
On the title track the Pogues
sound like they should be playing
tangos in a Sicilian bar, though

Shane MacGowan rambles on about
bordellos and Jean Genet doing time
in prison. The exquisitely simple
"Five Green Queensand Jean" finds
the group, heady from wine, playing
in a Left Bank caf6 in Paris. "The
Wake of the Medusa" could very
well be the Pogues as a rai band on a
bacchanalian romp in Algiers. On
"Sayonara," MacGowan falls in love
with an Asian beauty, then recalls
another romantic hiatus on the
pained Tom Waits-ish ballad
"Summer in Siam."
In its carnivalesque sense of the
bawdy and the scatological, Hell's
Ditch is more like the debut Red
Roses for Me than any of the
Pogues' other albums. MacGowan's
writing goes for the jugular more of-
ten. Lyrics are pithier; there are
fewer romantic ballads. After the
drunken debacle of the last U.S.
tour, Hell's Ditch is something of a
relief; and there's a drinking song on
it too.
-Nabeel Zuberi

Souls of Black
Souls of Black, the latest release
by the veteran heavy metal band Tes-
tament is an exemplary demonstra-
tioq of the form. It contains the typ-
ical vocals that surpass the point of
pain, guitar screeching that toys
with your spinal cord, and an all-out
head banging inducing rhythm. In
other words, it's good. Being typi-
cally hypocritical, the first side is
seems short although it consists of
six songs and the flip side feels
longer despite the fact that it only
has four. The album contains noth-
ing extraordinary, but "Beginning of
the End" seems to be the groups
lone attempt at doing something a
little different, even though it ends
too quickly. This album is prime
bait for the seasoned listener or the
novice wanting to break into the
World of Heavy Metal.
-Kim Yaged

HOT TUNA appear at the Blind Pig
for two shows at 8 and 11 p.m. Tick-
ets are $12.50 in advance at
Schoolkids' and $15 (including rep-
rehensible service charge) at Tick-

These people look pretty happy for a group that just put out an album
called Hell's Ditch. Maybe they've been drinking. Shane MacGowan?


Save the LP!
. Daily Arts


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previous stage experience for The
Last Supper at Uncle Tom's Cabin I
The Promised Land. Auditions are
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University Court (behind the Central


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Telephone 763-0379 for more in formafion

The Office of International Programs
Information Meetings for
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GREAT BRITAIN (Essex, York, London, St. Andrews)
Tues., Dec. 4, 1990
7:00 pm 443 Mason Hall
GERMANY (Freiburg)
Weds., Dec. 5, 1990
7:00 pm 443 Mason Hall
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7:30 pm B-115 MLB
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