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November 23, 1993 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-11-23

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A

's

.kooky enough to enjoy

Well, it's no Oscar winner but with Anjelica Huston (Morticia) and Raul Julia (Gomez) how bad could it really be? At least it's good for a couple laughs.

PAW

If you're looking for a way to start your Thanksgiving weekend, try Paw and
Flop's concert at St. Andrew's tonight. Hailing from Kansas, Paw packs
enough guitar raunch to qualify in the ever-popular grunge sweepstakes but
are also sensitive enough to be one of the favorite bands of the ethereal
folk-rockers, the Red House Painters. Paw's debut album, "Dragline,"
encapsulates their midwestern take on alternative perfectly; their live shows
are also rumored to be smashing.
On the other end of the spectrum is Flop. Although they're from Seattle,
* they sound very little like Mudhoney, Alice in Chains or Pearl Jam.
Throughout their excellent albums, "Flop and the Fall of the Mopsqueezer"
and the brand-new "Whenever You're Ready," Flop chums out a series of
irresistible pop songs that pack the best of the Kinks, Big Star, Cheap Trick,
Buzzcocks and Nirvana into one lovely three-minute treasure.
Make sure you make it to St. Andrew's tonight at 8 PM to catch the a
concert that showcases what commercial altemative is today. And that's a
compliment. Tickets are only $5 in advance, but you must be over 18 to join
in the fun.

Crush, Sr.
The Clown Sessions
Rockville Records/Dutch East India
Trading
NBC's smash-hit television sitcom
"Seinfeld" has been described as a
show about nothing. Likewise, Crush
Sr. can be called a band about noth-
ing. Their new release "The Clown
Sessions," a collection of songs origi-
nally recorded in the late '80's, is
extremely unconventional. The songs
do not follow the typical verse-cho-
rus-verse structure of most pop songs.
Instead, Crush Sr. either omit the cho-
rus completely or insert breaks char-
acterized by weird guitar noises.
The gems on the album include
"Crush Theme," a garage-band rocker;
"Pig Palmer," a unique punk song;
and "Couldn't Make It Over The
Bridge," a Neil Young-ish ballad.
I Many of the other tracks seem to drag
on without a point - much like
"Seinfeld."
This sense of frivolity is not the
only common reference-point be-
tween Crush Sr. and "Seinfeld." The
band's singer, Ron Ward, plays
Kramer's double on the television
show in "Seinfeld." Quite often,
Ward's wacky showmanship and zany
lyrics are what holds Crush Sr.'s songs
together. For example, in "Corndog,"
Ward sings "Got a corndog in my
pocket / It's a four-pound sausage / If
you got the mustard, I got the time."
Some of the other songs, such as
"Livin' Like a Pimp" and "Sexy Fish,"
are interestingjust based on their titles.
In the end however Crush, Sr. lacks
the one element that "Seinfeld" has
- consistent humor. The band writes
in the liner notes that "no band ever
had more fun making a recording
than did Crush, Sr. making The Clown
Sessions."Perhaps not. Unfortunately
the "fun" for the audience is limited
on this effort. However, there are some
good songs, maybe enough to make
"The Clown Sessions" a worthwhile
purchase. But, at the same time, some
tracks are boring and rather forget-
table. Flip a coin.
- Matt Carlson
Ghost of an American
Airman
Skin
Hollywood Records
In the limitless wake oftheR.E.M.
jangle comes "Skin," from Ghost of
an American Airman, a band from
Belfast, Northern Ireland. Ghost, com-
bining interesting but overly simpli-
fied lyrics with a bland, featureless
sound, has made an album which is ...
well, nice, I guess.

they catch a groove, but it is com-
pletely lacking in daring or ingenuity.
The album is edgeless, taking no
chances with its '80's pseudo-intel-
lectual style. You almost want to hear
them scream or swear or something,
just to make themselves remotely in-
teresting. The one thing that "Skin"
does accomplish is to prove that bands
can't keep on copping their sound
from R.E.M. and still maintain the
listener's interest.
- Josh Herrington
Altered State
dos
Warner
It's kind of ridiculous to think
about the marketing strength of drugs
these days. This is especially bizarre
considering the generation from which
we've been spawned. Altered State
makes use of this trendy marketing
ploy, but the music is where the band
really excels.
The tunes have a happy and up-
beat feel that pulls the listener into the
music. The musicians are all excel-
lent, especially guitarist Curtis
Mathewson whose musical sensibil-
ity is a rarity. Creative twists in the
songs make repeated listenings both
necessary and enjoyable. Stand-out
songs include the acoustic "Life on a
Skateboard," the samba and horns of
"Licking the V ..." and the effective
opener "This Just Might Take Me
Down".
Their influences include King's
X, Led Zeppelin, the Beatles and a
mixture of 90s influences. About half
of the songs are radio ready ballads,
but they're enjoyable anyway. Al-
tered State probably evolved from a
pop metal framework, but their
songwriting and identity overcome
any traces of that genre; they are
songwriters first and foremost.
This is an exciting band. They
leave the anger and depression of
modern rock music behind in ex-
change for a positive vibe. The music
may leave you wondering where
you've heard it before. For many parts
(such as the intro to "Strong as I Am"
which sounds a lot like a piece off of
Pink Floyd's "The Wall") your won-
derment will be warranted. However,
the quality of this record will tran-
scend all traces of unoriginality.
Potheads and music lovers rejoice.
Musical offerings of this caliber don't
come around very often.
- Gianluca Montalti
A Tribe Called Quest
Midnight Marauders

the story teller, pocket sweller,
sportin'-the-R&B-analogies fella in
the crew. If Mr. Mohammed reaches
any deeper into the jazz stacks he
might end up playing the sax. The
rhythms aren't recycled from the last
album but arejust as thumpin', smooth
yet (of course) gritty ruff.
But Tribe reaches back further then
the boom-bap, dark jazz and soul that
characterized "The Low End Theory,"
adding creative and stylistic varia-
tions reminiscent of "People's Instinc-
tive Travels and the Paths of
Rhythms." Large Professor and Skeff
Anselm each produce a track, the other
11 songs are all Tribe. One question
which lingers is whether Jarobi is
back with the group or not - he is
mentioned, but not pictured and he
does not give thanks. Whoever is in
the group, the album is pivotal. A
Tribe Called Quest is on track for the
year to 2000 and "Midnight Maraud-
ers" must be purchased by all. Right
now.
- Dustin Howes
Boredoms
Pop Tatari
Reprise
The Boredoms have come to our
nation, bringing screaming in-tongues
onto the music scene for the first time
since God knows when. The seven
member Japanese noise group has
released their first major label US
album, and it is quite likely this year's
most fascinating record.

"Pop Tatari" is not an album that
can just be listened to, it must be
open-mindedly experienced so that
its chaos and cacaphony are not mis-
taken for anything less than brilliant.
It brings a motley collection of styles
together to create a peculiar sound.
The opening track consists of 30 sec-
onds of high-pitched mechanical
whining, and provides a beautiful
white noise contrast to the muddled
elements of the rest of the album. And
a pleasant muddle it is. Jazz, blues
and rock are only the tip of what it
involves, and are about the only de-
scribable styles. Other styles involved
have yet to be named, but perhaps
"Flintstone tribalism with a Hallow-
een feel" is an appropriate, if silly,
appelation.
The voices on the album are rivet-
ing. War cries, gibbering, demonia-
cal screams and frog imitations all
contribute to the greatness of the al-
bum. The vocalization of the lyrics
(in Bore-language, a Japanese-En-
glish-Nonsense construction) ranges
from singing through the teeth on
"Molecicco" to growling and sexy
intonations of "Poy." Lyrics are defi-
nitely lacking, but the vocals more
than make up for that.
Boredoms are like a dream in that
they are very hard to pin down, and
they fly all over the place. They are
Hendrix, Mr. Bungle and a construc-
tion site in Okinawa all jumbled up.
It's noisy. Try it.
- Ted Watts

I 1

.gh they will forever be cursed as the band from MTV's "The Real
.eigndance is actually a solid, driving rock & roll band. Besides,
local band so you should get out and support their show tonight
d Pig. Doors open at 9:30 PM, with advance tickets selling for a
for those who are 19 and over.
le Now
I you Friar fans get movin' and go buy your tickets to that long
ent ... the FRIARS CONCERT! Tickets go on sale today for their
10 concert. We know how long you've been waiting for this so
your chance to get tickets. And when they sell out, don't come

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