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October 11, 1991 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 1991-10-11

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ARTS

The Michigan Daily

Friday, October 11, 1991

Page 8

College bands gettin'
curiouser and curiouser

by Nima Hodaei
"It the people of Ann Arbor don't
enjoy our show, I'll personally run
erands for them," says Mark Amft
in a tongue-in-cheek manner. Amft,
and fellow Drink Me member
Wynine Evans, bring this same
witty, off-the-wall sense of humor
to their music, resulting in what can
only be described as a "unique"
acoustic duo.
Prink Me, who get their name
froto Lewis Carroll's Alice in
Woderland, defy easy classifica
tio6, and in fact seem to thrive on
thg( int. After all, a group which
em oys Fanta bottles, kazoos and
uk eles along with more conven-
tional instruments such as guitars
mut possess a certain level of mu-
sic~l imagination. As Amft says,
"V like little things that don't
ne amplifiers. But I have a lot of
litt toy things that I haven't got-
ten-around to using yet."
erink Me's musical offerings
rate from folk songs to country to
a tle bit of blues and even some
puo-thrash. Originally a hardcore
d ,out of New York City, Amft
anT-vans sought a change and de-
ci64l to experiment with a more
foIoriented approach. They carried
thi approach to new heights, pro-
'du ng very simple yet dynamically
inIruing songs. One listen to their
sop-to-be-released self-titled de-
bu"album is a journey through
clerly separate musical genres.
Ea song stands out on its own, but
tog ther, a very experimental puz-
zl egins to take shape.
aprink Me bring their musical
putgle to Club Heidelberg this
Frejy night. When asked what con-
ceggoers might expect at their typ-
icgy unusual shows, Amft replies,
"'Tey can expect a kind of benign

Dead Ringers
dir. David Cronenberg
The works of director David
Cronenberg are both fascinating and
creepy. His films promote his con-
cept of the New Flesh, in which sci-
ence creates a horrific bastardization
of the evolution of the human form.
His most famous film of this genre
is probably The Fly, but he first de-
veloped his ideas in early B-movies:
They Come From Within, Rabid and
The Brood.
As an example of his com-
pellingly grotesque philosophy,
The Brood has psychotic patients
physicalizing their anxieties
through open sores or, in one case, a
brood of little creatures who repre-
sent the Id and go on a killing ram-
page. Dead Ringers, one of Cro-
nenberg's most recent films, con-
tinues in the New Flesh genre, but is
much less shocking, much more sub-
tle and much more disturbing.
Jeremy Irons gives outstanding
performances in Dead Ringers as a
pair of twin gynecologists who are
more than a little abnormal. Elliot
is flamboyant and outgoing, while
Beverly is introverted and responsi-

ble for much of the medical fame
they've achieved. They have an un-
usual dependency upon each other;
they share patients, women, every-
thing. As one brother says to the
other, "You haven't experienced

necologists. The film opens with
old drawings of archaic medical
instruments and torture devices, and
the difficulty in distinguishing the
medical tools from instruments of
pain starts the audience off with an
unsettling feeling. The operating
room that the brothers use seems
like a chamber of a strange cult,
with the doctors wearing blood red
robes and masks, and the room lit
with a dim, eerie light. It's particu-
larly unnerving when one of the
brothers gets special gynecological
instruments for mutant women
made which resemble the drawings
from the opening sequence.
While Dead Ringers is not one of
Cronenberg's most exciting films,
it is one of his best (and based on a
true story!) It is also his most re-
cent, and the massive drug use dur-
ing the film's second half should be
a good lead in to his soon-to-be-re-
leased adaptation of William S. Bur-
roughs' Naked Lunch.
Dead Ringers will play Saturday
at MLB 4 at 9 p.m., and will be ,
preceded by Cronenberg's The Dead
Zone at 7:10 p.m.

Irons
anything until I have as well." One
wonders if, when they share a wo-
man, they aren't more concerned
with effectively having sex with
each other.
Cronenberg takes full advantage
of the fact that the brothers are gy-

-Brent Edw

Pesci busts balls in Sesa-slum

wards

Would you believe the members of Drink Me used to be "a hardcore duo
out of New York City"? Looks like Buddy Holly meets Dorf to us.

anarchy. We don't really know what
to expect before we get up there. We
succeed by connecting to people in-
dividually, rather than massively
grouping people together with a
common beat. We sort of reach our
audience one person at a time."
The band's stage show and gen-
eral sound has often been compared

to that other two-man acoustic
group, They Might Be Giants. Amft
quickly dismisses the comparisons.
"I don't think they're really valid,
but that they're just convenient," he
says. "Their records, and what
they're focusing on now, has noth-
ing to do with what we do. There's
See DRINK, Page 11

The Super
dir. Rod Daniel
by Annette Petruso
The Super is a lot like a Sesame Street episode for
adults. You have Louie Kritski (Joe Pesci), who
changes from Bad to Good over the course of the
movie. Then there's his bigoted father, Big Lou
Kritski (Vincent Gardenia), who also gets a heart by
the end of the film, though much less dramatically.
The tenement Big Lou gives Louie to run is filled
with thoughtful yet street-smart Latinos, such as
Marlon (Reuben Blades), and Black people, such as
cute kid Tito (Kenny Blank). Louie eventually learns
his lesson: that you should care about people and that
you shouldn't always follow your elders' examples.
Louie runs his building like his father would, col-
lecting the rent and letting the rest go to hell. But
the Kritskis claim that they aren't slumlords, since
they provide low-income housing for the less fortu-
nate. The complaints build up so much, however, that
Louie is taken to court, prosecuted and sentenced to
an 120-day house arrest in his own decrepit tenement.
Through the course of his stay, Louie repairs
things, at first only because they bother him. He
fixes the poor electrical wiring, for example, only to
be able to listen to his stereo better. But later, Louie
makes improvements because he wants to. He even
prevents his father's hired arsonist (Anthony Caso)
from setting fire to the place.

Parts of the oversimplified plot are a wee bit far-
fetched. After cheering the court on to convict Louie,
the tenement residents are actually nice to him when
he moves in. Marlon befriends Louie, for instance,
with an invitation to a game of three-on-three bas-
ketball. Marlon's motivation to take on shrimpy
Louie is unfathomable for reasons other than the
hyped-up sight gags that ensue. Hm. Sounds like a
Bert and Ernie sketch.
Then there's the "relationship" between Louie
and Naomi Bensinger (Madolyn Smith Osborne), the
pretty, young city attorney who prosecuted him over
the violations. Louie wants to get into her pants
badly. He asks her to go out to lunch, to come up to
his place and to have meaningless sex. She resists, but
is charmed once Louie has lightened the sexual pres-
sure, calling him "Louie" for the first time.
Touching. At least nothing ever happens between
them. Imagine Maria and Oscar the Grouch doing the
wild thing. Ugh.
Louie's character allows Pesci to repeatedly
demonstrate that he can amusingly play a screaming
asshole. He makes constructive use of his height and
his high-pitched voice, providing subtle comedy. But
though there are many funny scenes, The Super is ul-
timately a Joe Pesci vehicle which relegates every
other character to one-dimensionality. It's an amus-
ing modern morality tale, and not a very original one
at that.
THE SUPER is playing at Briarwood and Showcase.

"::
4
-"i

Monks of Doom aren't into
Gregorian chants... are they?

y,Jeremy Lechtzin
Pick any dull, pretentious hard-
tock band, say the Sisters of Mercy,
and for the sake of argument, call
them Christ. Then that would make
mie Monks of Doom the anti-Christ.
Whimsical, talented and inventive,
the Monks add smarts to hard-edged
guitar rock, creating a monastery of
musical mayhem.
5 Three of the Monks of Doom,
Victor Krummenacher, Greg Lisher
Ond Chris Pedersen, are former
iembers of the defunct band
Camper Van Beethoven. The fourth
iember of the Monks, David
mmergluck, used to be in the
pphelias (as well as Camper for a
prief time). Despite some Camper
Barry-overs, most notably the band's
4uirky approach to music, the
Monks have their own distinct
pound. Bassist and co-vocalist
krummenacher isn't bothered by the
fact that the Monks are billed as
former members of Camper Van
Beethoven, or that comparisons are
made between the two bands. "You
gotta play upon who you are and
what you've done... Eventually, I
think we'll just be kind of standing
on our own," says Krummenacher.
& The band's first album,
Soundtrack to the Film: Breakfast
an the Beach of Deception, has a
ense, dreamy quality about it. The
4tle of the record is taken from a

joke between Krummenacher and the
other band members. "Basically, I
would play the music we were
working on for people I knew at the
time," he says. "We weren't really
using a lot of lyrics at the time. It
was mostly instrumental at that
point. (People said,) 'Yeah, it's like
T.V. soundtrack music,' so I mean,
that's what I called it."

graph Company, are a little more
varied. They range from simple folk
melodies to pounding guitar
numbers, all with a touch of the
Monks' wry humor. With the
Monks, the listener is presented
with a patchwork quilt of sound and
lyrics, not just one basic idea re-
peated 12 or 14 times. "My feeling
is that, you know, bands should be

'I don't like to listen to a lot of college radio
stuff, because I just think it's so rigid in
format. You know, it's like the whole Sub Pop
label idea. Bands have a distinct sound that's
recognizable by the label? That's ridiculous. I
like grunge, I'm into it, I think it's a great
thing. But anything, when it becomes a cliche,
is pretty redundant'
-Victor Krummenacher,
bassist and co-vocalist of the Monks of Doom

The murky, movie-theme atmo-
sphere of Breakfast is a fine exam-
ple of the Monks tackling an area of
music on a whim, but then executing
it well. The band's attitude reflects
this half-serious, half-mocking ap-
proach. "Schlock T.V. effect, I
think, is really good, actually...
Obviously it's what a lot of people
have been raised with, so, I mean, go
straight for the throat," laughs
Krummenacher.
The songs on the Monks' second
album, The Cosmodemonic Tele-

willing to kind of push parameters
quite a bit," says Krummenacher.
"It makes things a lot more inter-
esting in the long run."
The band's forthcoming album,
Meridian, on Baited Breath
Productions, should prove to be a
good blend of their past albums,
with some new twists. "I think it's
a lot more refined. I think the
songwriting is improved on it, and
it's a little bit more cohesive," says
Krummenacher.
The Monks' wide variety of mu-
sical interests is apparent in their
diverse sound, unlike most bands
who cite a fashionable mish-mash of
interests but whose songs all sound
like bad Led Zeppelin (yes, the
See MONKS, Page 11

01

If Martin Scorcese ever decided to do children's television, the result might be Mean Sesame Streets. Joe
Pesci could be a psychotically violent version of Oscar the Grouch who whacks Reuben Blades' Luis.

'I
I
4
4
*1
4
9
4
4
9
4
4
p
I

The Broken Pitcher
courtroom satire about tipping the scales of justice

Look for it in the
Classifieds!

'- a
.t ,
,; , /
."! r * 0
'.
. t

by Heinrich von Kleist
University Players

p. ,. . . i.

Skating in the Dark
David Michael Kaplan
Pantheon
In presenting a life, even in the
case of a fictional character, the most
difficult task is eliminating the mun-
dane. The character must be in-
teresting, yet believable. David Mi-.

chael Kaplan, in Skating in the
Dark, has managed to produce an en-
gaging and realistic character named
Frank. Kaplan does not give us
Frank's life as a continuous event,
spaced out evenly over time. Instead,
he reveals him through a collection
See BOOKS, Page 10

Trueblood Theatre
Oct. 10 -12, 17 - 19 at 8 PM;
Oct. 13, 20 at2PM
Student seating $ with ID.

"MAGICAL ,..A FILM THAT IS
I NaK Al I. RANOtihTS ANi Rll0IIIFTS"

I

I

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