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February 09, 1994 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-02-09

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8 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, February 9, 1994

Pawin' their way to

Nirvana spawned a musical monster that is
still rearing its ugly head. The term "grunge" is
now being used to refer to almost any new band
with long hair and electric guitars.
This broad generalization of "grunge" has
created a rush from music producers to sign any
band that fulfills the supposed grunge formula.
Subsequently, many new bands have understand-
ably been hesitant to label themselves as "grunge."
This is not the case with Paw, who calls itself
"country grunge" because "labels are ridiculous
anyway, it's all just rock 'n' roll."
Paw is a band from Lawrence Kansas that has
been taking the college music scene by storm.
Their combination of sensitive, intelligent lyrics
against a hard rock background has helped form a
new sub-species of grunge that is being called the
Midwest sound.
When asked why bands from the Midwest are
being given a chance, Charles Bryan, the bass
player from Paw responded, "Everybody is tired
of going to the big music cities and that is why it
is refreshing to have somebody from the Midwest.
The whole thing caught on and there's tons of
bands in Lawrence now."

Paw has had a very positive r
their record company and has fou
basically able to do as they plea
ducers did for us was help us get o
tapes," he said. "They don't tell u
if they did, we'd tell them to fuc
Although Paw may be indeb
they are not overly pious. "Helme
Nirvana, but we're not going to d
emerging sound, and Nirvana w
out, which helped bands like us
were at the right place at the rig
music is good ... you're not going
get signed just because Nirvana
Paw will be playing this Thur
Pig and the show promises to
experience. "We don't ever just
wish it was over right away. We a
really hard." The Blind Pig is tI
intimate environment that Paw th
fying this show's potential for g
Even though Paw's music is
guitar-driven, their lyrics are con
ligent, which appeals to an old
audience. In fact, "there is a surg
the show and he told us that whil

grunge success
elationship with listen to the album. How cool is that?" But Paw
and that they are also appreciates the younger audiences as well.
se. "All the pro- "We like the all-ages shows and we like to see
ur sounds on the younger kids come out because you never even
s what to do and think about them buying the albums. They're not
k off." even old enough to smoke yet."
)ted to Nirvana, - One of the many attacks on the new crop of
t sent flowers to grunge bands is that they are not authentic. Some
io that. It was an bands have been criticized for jumping onto the
as the first band grunge bandwagon, but this is not the case with
. Thankfully we Paw, in referring to the liner pictures from their
,ht time, and the stellar album "Dragline," Charles had this to say:
to come out and "We're musicians not models. We all had beards
did." and old clothes on, that's just the way we looked
sday at the Blind back then. There was nothing fake about it. I never
be a powerful really realized it, but man, we look like a country
stand there and group."
lways try to play Paw is a band that is concerned about their
he type of close, music and their audience. Even though many of
rives on, magni- the band members have cut their hair, there's no
reatness. reason to worry about Paw sticking to their roots
hard, heavy and because they still "pull off that grunge thing."



spicuously intel-
er, more mature
eon who came to
e he operates, he

PAW will pay with Doughboys and Stabbing
Westward on Thursday at the Blind Pig. Show
starts at 9:30. Tickets are $5, and are available
at anv TicketMaster outlet. Call 763-TKTS.

MPaw sauRe W ould'egeit,
Paw say they play "country grange." Who would've guessed it, eh?

Chorale indulges in'Fantasy'

What's your idea of a fantasy? Well, maybe the Arts
Chorale will be able to indulge you. This Wednesday they
will perform Ludwig van Beethoven's Choral Fantasy,
and it promises to be an intense evening.
Arts Chorale director Jonathan Hirsh described the
Choral Fantasy as a piece about "nature, harmony, the
harmony of life and how it comes about from the conver-
gence of all the forces of nature." Written around the
middle of Beethoven's career, the piece has a rather
unique origin.
"It was written as the finale for a very long concert in
which Beethoven presented a piano concerto, two sym-
phonies, his mass, a couple of other pieces, and this piece
was composed to unite all the forces who had performed
in the concert," Hirsh explained.
Hence the structure of the work, which involves six
vocal soloists, the piano soloist, the choir and the orches-
tra. It is principally an orchestra work, with a choral finale.
"The orchestra introduces the piece, the piano presents
the main theme, then there are several variations (on the
theme) and the chorus finally comes in to emphasize the
theme again, and bring the whole thing together," Hirsh
The Choral Fantasy has been compared on many
occasions to Beethoven's Ninth Symphony - some call
it "a poor man's Ninth"- but Hirsh resists that compari-

son. "People have compared (them) because (of) th
choral finale, but (the Choral Fantasy) can't really star
up against the Ninth symphony in stature," he explaine
"It really has to stand on its own merits."
And the Choral Fantasy does indeed have its ow
merits, which goes back to why the piece was selected.'
doesn't have a lot of responsibility for the choir, but whl
it does sing is very exciting. It showcases the orchestr
and the piano soloist," Hirsh said.
The Campus Philharmonia will play, and the pian
soloist will be School of Music Professor Louis Nagel. A
an added bonus, the Arts Chorale invited choirs from ar
high schools to sing with them-Milan, LivoniaFrankli
Livonia Stevenson, Ypsilanti and Northville - whir
they did for musical and for recruitment reasons. "It
something that we think would be a good way to publici
the Arts Chorale to prospective incoming students," Hir
said. Each choir will also do pieces of its own, as will tf
Arts Chorale.
If all goes well - as Hirsh is certain it will - the Ar
Chorale will hopefully make the high-school concerta
annual event. But there are no guarantees, so you shou
definitely make plans to get to this one.

THE ARTS CHORALE wsg. five area high school
choirs will perform Beethoven's Choral Fantasy plus
other pieces Wednesday at Hill Auditorium. The
concert begins at 8 p.m., and admission is free.


Mazzy Star
he So Tonight That IMight See
nd Capitol
d, Now that the Cowboy Junkies have
decided to flex their collective rock
un 'n' roll muscles, fans of that band's
"It sleeper "The Trinity Sessions" may
at find themselves looking for a simi-
a, larly narcoleptic replacement. The
answer might be Mazzy Star's latest,
no "So Tonight That I Might See." Open-
As ing with the gentle electric strum-
ea ming of the hushed "Fade Into Her,"
in, the record establishes its dark, ambi-
eh ent mood early and sticks to it almost
's religiously, from the ultra laid-back
ze tones of "Blue Light" to the almost-
sh bluesy "Wasted." Hope Sandoval and
he David Roback again handle the ma-
jority of the writing and playing on
rts the album, with the exception of the
an beautifully sublime "Five String Ser-
ld enade," penned by Arthur Lee.
Unfortunately, the very aspect of
"So Tonight That I Might See" which
lends it its reluctant charm is the same
element that causes a feeling of wea-
riness by the time the last few tracks
roll around. Mazzy Star is pleasant
and understated and quite nice by
candlelight, but the record simply
grows tired without anything to life
its mood.
Roscoe Mitchell &
Note Factory
This Dance is for Steve
Black Saint
Having spent a good deal of his
formative years restructuring notions
,of jazz and music, Roscoe Mitchell
turns toward melody on "This Dance
is for Steve McCall." His skilled
improv surges are still present through
out this CD; but he leaves much of the
sound layering up to the Note Fac-
Detroiters Jaribu Shahid and Tani
Tabbal have spent a good deal of time
with Mitchell and his music, extend-
ing the Chicago-based exploratory
aesthetic to the next industrial center
and generation. The other members
of the Note Factory round out adouble
bass, double drum ensemble. Their

bottom-heavy sound creates an
opaque density.
"Ericka" opens the recording with
a delicate lyricism supported by
bowed-bass undertones, melting into
pulsing hand drum rhythms and
Mitchell's multi-tonal improv fury.
Dedicated to drummer and fellow
AACM-er Steve McCall, the title
may stem from the percussive focus
of these songs (or vise versa). Tani
Tabbal and Vincent Davis provide
the polyrhythms, while Mitchell -
the interminable multi-instrumental-
ist - and bassist William Parker toss
in their own percussive additives.
Together they create an orchestra
of timbres in the brief percussion col-
lages "Uptown Strut" and "Ah." They
carry the pointillist piano and bass
interjections in "Variations for String
Bass and Piano," Matthew Shipp's
abrupt piano style adding to the
The dense sound-scape is most
effective in "The Rodney King Af-
fair." Parker's and Shahid's deep
strings combined with the duo per-
cussion and Mitchell's masterful
range of the entire sax family makes a
whirlwind of sound... an appropriate
remembrance of L.A.'s twisted chaos.
-- Chris Wy rod
Near Death Experience
Century Media
It's always sad to see a revolution-
ary band fall from grace. The Cro-
Mags' legendary 1986 release, "The
Age of Quarrel," defined the New
York hardcore sound and attitude.
Fights between the main songwriters,
bassist Harley Flanagan and singer
John Joseph, led to seemingly con-
stant lineup changes. Both Flanagan
and Joseph were members of the
Krishna faith and these fights suppos-
edly concerned who was the most
righteous Krishna (no, I'm not kid-
ding). Flanagan kicked Joseph out of
the band and took over the vocal re-
sponsibilities on 1989's "Best
Wishes." John Joseph was out of the
band for five years until he reunited
with the band and released 1992's
mediocre "Alpha-Omega." Recent

fights between the two, rumored to be
over stolen money, led to Flanagan's
departure. "Near Death Experience"
has John Joseph's awesome vocals,
but there is little else redeeming about
these songs.
Ah, if only the music was as inter-
esting as the politics of the band. The
music is more like boring heavy metal
than the energetic hardcore that im-
mortalized their debut. Joseph tries a
rap style on "War on the Streets" that
he attempted with great success on
"Alpha-Omega." This time, however,
it sounds tired and contrived. The
most successful single on their last
record, "The Other Side of Madness,"
mysteriously appears on this record
as well. It is supposedly another ver-
sion, but it sounds exactly the same. It
may be time to hang up the hat be-
cause the magic is gone. Joseph is still
great, though, and should be watched
for in the future.
- Gianluca Montalti
Redd Kross
Mercury/ Polygram
Redd Kross are a band that straddle
the line between punk and pop culture
and have their tongues planted firmly
in cheeks. This unusual contortion
does not affect their abilitynto create
and perform fun, quirky music, how-
ever; they've been around for nearly
15 years and on this album, they have
found the perfect mix between the
bubble gum of Debbie Gibson and the
avant garde of Thurston Moore (both
of whom the band ranks among its 4
personal friends). They love the Par-
tridge Family as much as Sonic Youth.
Their music is cheesy fun that
holds up well on repeated listenings;
tunes such as "Jimmy's Fantasy"
"Lady in the Front Row" "Visionary"
"Pay For Love" and "Saragon" mix
the bands soaring harmonies, guitar
technique, pop structures, and love of
kitsch into an irresistible confection
of an album. "Phaseshifter" is a must
for hipsters (Weiland of Stone Temple
Pilots "loves" this band, but don't let
that stop you) as well as fans of witty
bubble gum power-pop. May Redd
Kross be groovy for another 15 years.
- Heather Phares


f f #

APR? 27 19871
2 h
1 98,


.................................... . . .
L ast year students made 186,000 visits
to our Residence Hall Libraries.
It's no wonder - students can borrow
hn,kcC1t vine e serres. lanauaa


li braries
is in your
hall. So


Your Uncle Sam. Every year Army fees. They even pay a flat rate for text-

:: ° i

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