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October 18, 1993 - Image 8

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Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-10-18

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

8 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, October 18, 1993

Unrest falls short of goal
Stereolab outshines Unrest at St. Andrews

0
S

By HEATHER PHARES
The performance Stereolab and Unrest gave last Thurs-
day at St. Andrew's Hall disappointed none and surprised
many. Both bands showed that they are among the best at
what they set out to do: find new solutions to the pop
puzzle.
Stereolab was the big surprise (and success) of the
nrest with Steroolab
t. Andrew's Hall
tober 14, 1993
evening. They gave a performance that managed to be
hypnotic and hypercharged at the same time. Their trade-
mark organ-dominated sound made bodies sway and
pulsate, and the vocal interplay between Laetitia and
Mary was complemented by the Moogs and organs nicely.
Even when their amps picked up radio signals, Stereolab
kept their cool and churned out lots of lulling, groovy,
loud melodies, such as "Jenny Ondioline," the single from
their latest album, "Transient Random-Noise Bursts with
Announcements" as well as selections from "Space Age

Bachelor Pad Music," "Peng!" and others. All in all, it was
a unique performance that blew the audience away with its
volume and force.
Unfortunately, they were a tough act for Unrest to
follow. While the band was musically proficient, techni-
cal difficulties hindered their performance from achiev-
ing the level that Stereolab's achieved. Most unfortu-
nately, the vocal mics were too quiet in the sound mix; one
could barely hear Bridget and Mark near the beginning of
the show. To add insult to injury, one of guitarist / singer
Mark's strings broke toward the end of the performance.
But these problems did not snuff out Unrest's charm
completely; the group was instrumentally tight, espe-
cially the drummer, Phil. His ferocious attack gave the
songs a looser, heavier feel than might be expected from
the band's rather precious recorded sound. But the standout
songs gave the audience its money's worth: "Make Out
Club," "Light Command," "Cherry," "Isabel" and "West
Coast Love Affair" pleased the crowd immensely. But,
again unfortunately, once Unrest were beginning to hit
their stride, it was time for them to leave the stage. Despite
the glitches, the concert was an enjoyable, fun show that
more or less satisfied the audience's craving for some of
the most original-sounding pop being made today.

Ever since "Nevermind," the rules of the game have changed drastically within the rock & roll world. Bands that
would never have gotten a record contract three years ago are inundated with offers and money. Every once in a
while, one of these bands will make something worthwhile and with "Envy," Eve's Plum has made an auspicious
debut. They borrow and steal from anything they get their hands on, from R.E.M. and Jane's Addiction to the Beatles
and the Doors - it's likely that you'll be able to hear your favorite band somewhere in "Envy." And that is a
compliment, because the band mixes all of these diverse influences into an accessible, enjoyable sound - it may
not sound completely original but it does sound good. In many ways, Eve's Plum is a perfect example of post-
Nirvana pop; Gumball guru and Teenage Fanclub / Posies producer Don Fleming even contributes some guitar,
While their grinding guitars are straight out of contemporary college rock, Colleen Fitzpatrick's emotive vocals are
derived directly from classic rock. Because they cover so much territory, it's hard to resist the group's sound. Eve's
Plum will open for the thundering, alternative-rock power-trio Eleven at the Blind Pig tonight. The doors will open at
9:30 and don't hesitate to go - there's no cover charge. And if you're worrying that you'll miss buying the new
Pearl Jam album because you're at the show, don't fret - Schoolkid's Records will be selling the record at 12:00
for a measly $10.99 on CD. You can't lose with this one.

0"

Stillborn
State of Disconnection
Century Media Records
In the genre of metal music, there's
a fine line between the exciting and
themundane. Bands such asMetallica,
or even the more recent Therapy?, are
clearly among the former, adding char-
acter and interest to the metal move-
ment through musical ingenuity and
creativity. However, these are pre-
cisely the elements that Stillborn's
"State of Disconnection" lacks.
An overview of the characteristics
of basic metal shows how very little
Stillborn drifts from the norm. First,

power chords: Check;next, bass lines
which match those chords exactly:
Check; low, phlegm-jarring vocals:
Check; and finally, band members
with hair so long you could shave it
and have dental floss for at least a
decade (sweaty dental floss, nonethe-
less): Check. Stillborn is also bla-
tantly transparent in lyrical content.
Random lines like "created just to be
destroyed / out of the fire and into the
void" ("A Wonderful Time") or "I
don't wanna be / a puppet on your
string / Ain't gonna let you clip my
wings" ("Non Serviam") demonstrate
the triteness infecting "State of Dis-
connection."

The music has the same essenti
flaws; rarely does Stillborn throw any'
variation into the generic death-
chords. Although listeners who enjoy
such low-frequency romping might
find this element of "State of Discon-
nection" desirable, they can find many
more talented bands who use the same
technique more successfully.
"State of Disconnection", Still-
born blatantly ignores one very im-
portant fact - there's more to metal
music thanjustheadbanging. Today's
listeners can find far more interesting
music to suit their moshing needs.
And they do.
- Josh Herrington

It was a cool show. What can we say? Unrest and Stereolab are definitely bands on the rise.

9

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