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January 14, 1993 - Image 16

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The Michigan Daily, 1993-01-14

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01

Page 8- The Michigan Daily-Weekend etc. -.January 14,1993

1

Two great tastes in one
You can have your flannel-brained grungesters and ambassadors of the "alternative nation" (whatever thatmeans) here comes two bands that represent the true breed of happenin' made in the U.S.A. Rawk and Roll. First up is
Madison, WA.'s Walt Mink. This post-Rush power trio is with the killer chops routinely blow minds with their complex stop-start key change mindfuck histrionics. They've got that loud-quiet dynamic thing nailed. It's all about tension,
kids. Way trippy but still firmly rooted in Mother Earth, the Minksters are (still) touring in support of their debut disc, "Miss Happiness." This cerebral romp through the twenty-something psyches of starchildren equally versed in Cream
as Nick Drake (whose "Pink Moon" they smashingly cover) is a gas. Live, they'll be tightening up a bevy of new tunes for their much-anticipated sophomore release. Get Minked, it's fun!
Behind curtain #2 is the Swirlies, a crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside quartet from Beantown, MA. Unlike everyone else in the world, I'm not gonna say they sound like My Bloody Valentine. The Swirlies just used the lovefuzz
acid drops of MBV's "Isn't Anything" as a springboard into a totally different head. Where the Valentines explode pop conventions and sends them hurtling into the stratosphere, the Swirlies eschew that whole pretentious
"netherworlds" trip, and cart their oceanic sugarblast musings down to the basement. Shelve the high-tech trickery; The Swirlies prefer good ol' fashioned creative ingenuity. Their new release, "What To Do About Them" is a blistering
collection of brill tunes old and new. From cacophonic masterpieces like "Tall Ships" and "Didn't Understand," to the glorious post-power pop monster "Chris R.," this sucker will rock your world. If these happy faces are half as good
live, prepare to be amazed. Walt Mink and The Swirlies will be making some really cool noise Friday night at the Blind Pig (206 S. First) Tickets are a measly $5 (p.e.s.c.) in advance, and 18 and older are more than welcome. Oh yeah,
and the Swirlies are also playing a set at The Lab later on that same night. Someone at The Pig will be able to tell you where it is.

RECORDS
Continued from page 3
Various Artists
Honkers and Bar Walkers vol. 2
Delmark Records
This second volume of 1950s sax
blowouts contains even more heavy
honkers and killer dillers than its pre-
cursor. Volume two has matured from
the duck fever, sausage pondering, and
pink Cadillac pining of numero uno to
gator calls, bean heads, and blue jean
stylin'.
None of the artists match the blow-
your-guts-out squankin' of Jimmy
Forrest and Jimmy Coe. Instead, the cd
But, if you want it hot,
Morris Lane and King
Curtis bracket this cd
with some passionate
wonking.
glides through steamy R & Bebop
instrumentals with Panama Francis's
and Charlie Ferguson's Orchestra's li-
bidinous grinds and spooky hair-rais-
ers. What some of these smoothies lack
in ear-aching sax appeal is made up
with gobs of reverb and hormone
drenched shouts from ecstatic teens.
Just when things are getting predict-

able, you stumble over Bill Harray's
cooky Walk Right In filled with sly
double entendres that slip right by the
furrowed browed moral majority and
like-minded FCC executive types. Jesse
Powell's 1956 remake (The Walkin'
Blues) lacks all of Harray's subtlety for
the benefit of dimwitted portions of the
R & B populace.
But, if you want it hot, Morris Lane
and King Curtis bracket this cd with
some passionate wonking. Lane re-
placed Arnett Cobb in the 1947 Lionel
Hampton Band, and the Cobbesian in-
fluence is evident in the 1951 session.
King Curtis, the last of the R & B
stylists, trucks with heavy footed assurity
on Rush Hour, whose opening reso-
nates with Bud Powell's Parisian Thor-
oughfare. The only thing missing from
this compilation is the live bar walking,
bug crawling showmanship of these
reed-biters...but you can imagine.
-Chris Wyrod
Trixter
Hear!
MCA
"Hear!" Is that an order? I guess it
would have to be.
There are three redeeming songs on
this album, the rest are pure filler. These
three are "Rockin' Horse," "Power of
Love," and "Bloodrock," which all
employ the same catchy hook. They

come as a package, interrupted only by
the suspiciously Tesla-like "Runaway
Train." Sadly, they are the only semi-
original material on the album.
Now "hear" this: we have enough
corny hard-rock tunes about following
our hearts ("As the Candle Burns"),
how wild the hard-rock lifestyle is
("Wild is the Heart"), and don't forget
the ever-popular good-to-be-bad motif
("Damn Good").
Hey, Trixter - get some original
song ideas and then we'll see.
-Kristen Knudsen
Keith Richards
Main Offender
Virgin
I never thought I'd say this, but
Keith Richards' new record is boring. It
used to be my favorite part of Rolling
Stones' records to hear Richards' meat
grinder voice tearing apart some raging
rocker.
But somehow his voice has
smoothed out (I often can't tell him
from his female backing singers) and
without the Stones' rhythm sections,
the songs are flabby and slow (not to
mention very weak lyrically). "Main
Offender" is a real disappointment.
- Steven Knowlton
Raymond Scott
Reckless Nights and Turkish
Twilights
Columbia
Imagine a wabbit hole being
overstuffed with dynamite - this is the
music you're hearing. The woefully
unheralded 20th-century musical giant
Raymond Scott is the Ur-Carl Stalling
in that he is the most distinctive of that
merrie maestro's non-classical sources.
You'll recognize many of his proto-
merrie-melodies if you've ever seen a
Looney Tune on the cathode tube. These
cleaned-up and compiled jazzy 78s dat-

French artists frolic
in the countryside

by Camilo Fontecilla
It's a general rule to beware of all
films that display framed pictures of the
stars on the poster, a la Agatha Christie
adaptations. "Impromptu," set in the

Richards

ing from the late '30s are many of
Scott's rinky-dinky standards, includ-
ing "DinnerMusic fora Pack of Hungry
Cannibals" and the ever-popular "Pow-
erhouse."
Scott archivist Irwin Chusid's liner
notes are thorough and most helpful in
looking into both Scott's genius and his
biography. Would you have guessed
that behind Scott's seemingly sponta-
neous, energetic music was a composi-
tional style not unlike the one employed
by Captain Beefheart for "Trout Mask
Replica"? He didn't compose on paper
- he composed on his piano and told
the members of his six-piece "quintette"
exactly what to play, and mercilessly
drove them through chronic practices
and rehearsals.
Though the hour of "Reckless
Nights"might seemlike themotherlode,
it is only the surface of Scott's visionary
musical depths, which ranged from pre-
scient innovations in ambient and elec-
tronic music (including inventing the
programmable sequencer) to working
for Motown Records. Hopefully many
more archives will be dipped into, so as
to present Scott in all of his musical
guises, and to make sure that Scott's
work can be heard-notjust read about
in footnotes.
- Greg Baise

height of the French romantic period, is
an exception. James Lapine draws to-
gether an ensemble that captures the
19th-century bohemian Paris art scene
(phew) with great accuracy. Essentially,
this movie is a festival of human energy,
sparked by love, lust and wit. Lapine
tames this energy without suppressing
it, and channels it into the fast-moving
storyline and characters' sharp tongues.
"Impromptu" recounts the mishaps
of androgynous novelist George Sand
(Judy Davis) as she attempts to seduce
the gifted but chaste composer Frederic
Chopin (Hugh Grant). Due toherliberal
lifestyle, she has managed to accumu-
late two children and a history of heart-
broken lovers. Of these, Felicien
Mallefille (Georges Corraface), hermost
recent suitor, seems most particularly
set on getting her back, and will do
anything to truncate her plans. What's
more, her friend Marie d'Agoult
(Bernadette Peters), who is living with
composer Franz Liszt (Julian Sands),
also develops an interest in Monsieur
Chopin and contrives to. covertly foil
George's objectives. The situation be-
gins getting juicy when they are all

invited to the country mansion of the
Duchess d'Antan (Emma Thompson),
a self-proclaimed patron of the arts.
Judy Davis excels as the masculine
and passionate George Sands. Hugh
Grant plays a prim and well drawn out
Chopin, Polish accent and all, and
Bernadette Peters is splendid as the
cunningand unhappy Mme. d'Agoult.
Mandy Patinkin is the writer Alfred de
Musset, another of George's ex-lovers,
and the perfect impersonation of a fop,
as is painter Eugene Delacroix (Ralph
Brown). Emma Thompson, butt of the
sarcasm of her guest artists, carries her-
self with such an affected dignity that
without question she becomes the most
comic character in this jumble that she
inadvertently sets up.
To make aperiod piecework, it's not
This movie is a festival
of human energy,
sparked by love, lust
and wit.
enough to make pretty costumes. James
Lapine recreates the style and flavor of
the period meticulously, spicing it up
with hilarious comic situations andcon-
trasting high passion. To mix these two
is not easy, but this movie serves them
both on the same silver platter. Remem-
ber to leave your family values on your
desk, though. There is nothing proper
about the way these people get what
they want. If you're willing to take the
risk, go out and rent the movie, and
don't get thrown off by the musicians in
the plot. They're only human too, you
know.

I I - L

tokanrg
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The University of Michigan Club

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Jan iuarv 19 and 20

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Beginners XWelcome!
Winter 1993 Pranctice schedu ic

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For more inftuniiaon:
YaIsu: 994-355X
Mary: 747-2945 Atri 747-3141

IMPROMPTU is available at Liberty
Street Video

A N N A R B O R
0* mpkrnj' '' 'rchcrd
SAMUEL" WONG, MUSIC DIRECTOR
AN ALL-AMERICAN LANDSCAPE
Saturday, January 16, 8 p.m. at the Michigan Theater
featuring
THE MIDWEST PREMIERE OF YAMEKRAW,
A Negro Rhapsody
by celebrated American Composer James P. Johnson
Performed with orchestra by noted U-M pianist William Albright

gammmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmqg
° e Fabber than
° the Fab 5! °
Badder than I
° the Bad Boys! I
° ~Grateful Dead°
Olympic
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01

MONDAY FRIDAY

SUNDAY

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