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January 07, 1994 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-01-07

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Fun in the Wintertime
We know it's snowy and cold outside, but what better way to escape the
winter blues than by joining ska masters Gangster Fun Saturday night at the
Blind Pig. Gangster Fun warms up the house everytime they take the stage,
and are a sure bet to kick out the winter chills. Ann Arbor locals Train of
Thought open the lively festivities. Call 996-8555 for more info.
What's so Funny?
Hold your horses everybody. Detroit's Second City Comedy Troupe has
canceled their January 14 show at the Michigan Theater. We have been told
that refunds are available at the point of purchase. Apparently, if you're
interested in seeing them you still have to make the jaunt out to Detroit.
True Alternative Dancing
It may not be the Nectarine or The Shelter in Detroit, but the People
Dancing Studio (111 Third St.) is holding a Dance Jam tonight at 10 p.m.
Promising a nightclub atmosphere without the smoke and alcohol, you can
boogie down to songs from varied artists for $3. Call 996-2405 for more info.
Hee-haw!
There's going to be a rockin' evening of bluegrass/country music at the
Ark. The RFD Boys will be there, and if you haven't heard of them by now,
we don't know where you've been. They've been playing here since they
were students at the University in the '60s. Whoa. Members, students and
seniors can catch them for just $7.75 and others for just $1 more on Saturday.
I'll Never Forget my College Daze
Tonight you can go to Chrysler (on North Campus, that is) and catch the
second flick from the gifted filmmaker Spike Lee, "School Daze." Lee's own
school days serve as a basis for this film about campus life in the'60s. Though
Lee was never really big until his third film, "Do the Right Thing," "School
Daze" did win him critical acclaim. And it's free, so get there at 5 p.m.

Val Kilmer, Sam Elliot, Kurt Russell and Bill Paxton think about what they want on their tombstones. We think Val looks like a pepperoni man.
'Tombstone' shines without Clint Eastwood

Robert Dick
Third Stone from the Sun
New World Records
While it's easy to lose Robert
Dick's newest release in the haze of
recent Jimi Hendrix tributes and "ex-
periences," Dick's take is a bit differ-
ent - Bob plays the flute.
Adapting Hendrix tunes to the flute
may seem as ill-fitting as strumming
a Shostakovich opus on a ukulele. Yet
Dick fills in all the emotion and virtu-
osity of Hendrix's approach.
Dick explores the personal drive,
life choices and aesthetics that pro-
pelled Hendrix's music. By looking
beyond the blue notes and now-fa-
mous licks,Dick delves into Hendrix's
seemingly limitless creativity and in-
tensity.
Dick isjoined by the Soldier String
Quartet, guitarist Jerome Harris and
drummer Jim Black on the odd tunes.
Covering some of Hendrix's most
familiar ground, these remarkably
fresh arrangements explore the rhyth-
mic drive and lucid melody of Jimmy's
' craft.
In the title tune, Dick's flute
musings and flute-amplified speech
propel Hendrix's rendition beyond
the third planet from the sun to an
uncharted sound universe.
"Pali Gap" is more confined than
Hendrix's original solo exploration;
but it finds Jimmy's inner beauty with-
out his outerdestructiveness. "Tycho"
employs dark overtones in a blues
planctus fit to eulogize Hendrix's
death.
Slinging an array of flutes ranging
from piercing piccolo to undulating
bass flute, Dick's most impressive
renditions are his solo works. He
pieces together Hendrix riffs and co-
das, using them as touchstones for
powerful improvisational flights.
Mastering new flute techniques, such
as circular breathing, tongue flutters
and multiple overtones, Dick aptly
pays homage to his inspiration's vir-
tuosity.
Slightly changing Hendrix's sonic
colorations on "Greenhouse," over-
laying flocks of flute whispers for a
Tuva-esque Hendrix rendition, and
sublimating meter on "Purple Haze,"
Robert Dick's renditions are not life-

less lithographs. His winds cry with
the spirit of Hendrix.
- Chris Wyrod
Mudhoney
Five Dollar Bob's Mock
Cooter Stew
Reprise
Mudhoney's fifth release, "Five
Dollar Bob's Mock Cooter Stew," is
a magnificent EP and is the band's
best album yet. Mudhoney has al-
ways shown how excellent they can
be, especially on their Sub Pop singles
like "Touch Me I'm Sick," but on
their albums, they have demonstrated
an on-again, off-again imbalance of
song writing skills. On their albums,
Mudhoney delivers about 50 percent
excellence and 50 percent medioc-
rity.
This is not the case on the band's
second major label release. lEach of
the seven songs is strong from the
sonically trashy "No Song III" to the
blues of "Between Me & You Kid" to
the garage rock of "Six Two One."
What's this, no grunge? Hell no! When
the big northwest explosion of '92 hit
the music industry, Mudhoney seemed
to be unfortunately thrown in with all
of the tiring metal bands like Alice In
Chains and Soundgarden who took
'70s rock titans Led Zeppelin and
Black Sabbath as major influences to
form a "new" form of music. Yawn.
Mudhoney sounds like they dug
deeper in the rock & roll mecca with
garage/R&B bands from the '60s as
influences. If the record executives
had pulled their heads out of their
asses and had wiped the dollar signs
from their eyes long enough to listen
to the music they might have realized
this.
On "Five Dollar Bob's Mock
Cooter Stew," Mudhoney is excep-
tionally tight and Steve Turner's lead
guitar is furiously driven. Some may
find Mark Arm's vocals a bit annoy-
ing (sensitive ears be forewarned!),
but his whining/singing fits
Mudhoney's garage-trash sound per-
fectly. This is the best release yet
from an already great rock & roll
band.
- Matt Carlson

By CHRIS LEPLEY
Finally. After years of holding our
breath we've finally got a good movie
out of Hollywood Pictures. "Tomb-
stone" is an honest-to-God shoot-'em-
up super-cool Western which tells the
Tombstone
Written by Kevin Jarre; directed by
George P. Cosmatos; with Kurt
Russell, Val Kilmer, Michael Biehn
and Bill Paxton
story of WyattEarp and Doc Holliday,
the shootout at the O.K. Corral and
everything that led up to it, and fol-
lowed it. Despite a little waffling in
the direction, and the presence of a
few too many useless women just to
provide historical accuracy, the movie
has the epic feeling of old fashioned
good vs. evil conflicts, where the he-
roes would like to pretend they're evil
because they agonize over splattering
somebody's tiny brain against the barn
wall, but the audience never doubts
who are the good guys and who are
the bad guys.
On the good guys side are some of
the best actors working today. Kurt
Russell takes top billing as Wyatt
Earp, an ex-law man who just wants
to come out west with his brothers
and his drug-addicted wife Mattie
Earp (Dana Wheeler-Nicholson) and
make a peaceful life for himself. Ha!
A peaceful life in the old west where
gangs of outlaws ride around shoot-
ing Catholic priests? Not for long can
a righteous man such as Wyatt Earp
stand by and watch innocent townsfolk
be ground under the heel of oppres-
sion and violence. Which is a good
thing, because a Western in which
nobody gets shot would be a boring
Western indeed.
Wyatt holds out for his peaceful
life for quite a while, pausing only to
dally with traveling actress Josephine
(Dana Delany) and open a card game
in a local saloon. An old friend of
Wyatt's wanders into town. Enter Val
Kilmer as Doc Holliday, a southern
gentleman with a penchant for drink-
ing, gambling and shooting people.

When the peaceful town of Tomb-
stone, Arizona is disrupted by the
Cowboy gang, Wyatt's brothers Virgil
(Sam Elliott) and Morgan (Bill
Paxton) step in to become the law.
Curly Bill (Powers Boothe) leads
the Cowboy gang, but after he bites it
Johnny Ringo (Michael Biehn) takes
over in true psychotic fashion. Al-
though Wyatt is supposedly the focus
of the film, it's the tension between
Doc Holliday andJohnny Ringo which
provides the most memorable scenes.
Two gunfighters speaking Latin to
each other as one twirls a revolver and
the other spins a whiskey glass is a
sight rarely seen, and beautifully
played by both actors.
And, all in all, it's the acting that
stands out in "Tombstone." It seems
like every actor in the English-speak-
ing world showed up for this movie.
Jason Priestley takes a few scenes as
Billy Breckenridge, Michael Rooker
plays Sherman McMasters, there's

Mr. Fabian (Billy Zane), Barnes (John
Corbett of "Northern Exposure"),
Frank Stallone as Ed Bailey, Billy
Bob Thornton (the writer of "One
False Move") as Johnny Tyler,
Charlton Heston as rancher Henry
Hooker (I guess that cameo in
"Wayne's World 2" just wasn't
enough for Charlie this year) and last
but not least, Wyatt Earp himself (well,
a descendant, anyway) as Billy
Claiborne. Robert Mitchum even does
the narration of the film.
Every performance is inspired, and
all of the characters have distinct traits
and quirks, even if they're only on
screen for a few seconds. The story
itself is where the biggest problems
lie, with not enough time being given
to characters and plot development.
Sometimes you just have no clue
what's going on, and characters seem
to die for no conceivable reason.
Michael Rooker's McMasters, for
example, shows up being dragged

behind a horse. Wyatt groans "They
got McMasters," and the audience
groans "What? When? Did he go
somewhere? What happened?" The
film tries very hard to stay true to
history, depicting the romantic rela-
tionship between Wyatt and Josephine
tastefully (even if it's a little silly),
but not many of the historical aspects
make sense. They just seem tossed in
for effect and accuracy.
Despite script problems and plot
confusion, "Tombstone" is a classic
western with memorable perfor-
mances by a host of great actors. Val
Kilmer's Doc Holliday is the quintes-
sential tortured hero, and Michael
Biehn's Johnny Ringo is atrue psycho-
killer. Even though Clint Eastwood
doesn't make an appearance, he's the
only actor missing from this ensemble
cast, and it is possible to make a good
western without him.
TOMBSTONE is playing at
Showcase.

THE SEVENTEENTH
ANN ARBOR

Alo

FEATURING
*>MICHBLESHOCKED
. RICHARD THOMPSON1\
* BELAIECK &
" THE FLECKTONES
JIMMIE DALE GIORE ~
TISH HINOJOSA
DAVID :
BROZA 1
CHERYL 1.-.::
:THE HOUSE BAND
e nan an nnmmas

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