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December 13, 1994 - Image 17

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-12-13

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The Michigan Daily - Tuesday. December 13, 1994 - 17

tRECORDS
Continued from page 9
Life" (hey, is that a lost Pearl Jam
song?) provides a fine backdrop for
Buckley to flex his vocal muscles.
Following the choirboy-sweet "Cor-
pus Christi Carol," it also underscores
Buckley's incredible range. He seems
as comfortable with his falsetto as his
4 raspy middle register.
With "Grace," Buckley proves that
he can not only overtake his father's
shadow, he can leave it in the dust.
With that voice, Jeff Buckley can do
anything. Here's hoping that he con-
tinues to try. Often.
- Jennifer Buckley
,5 Chinese Brothers
Singer Songwriter Beggarman
Thief
1-800-Prime-CD
It's difficult to classify the 5 Chi-
nese Brothers and therein lies much of
their appeal. As the title of their first CD
suggests, the band relates to the tradi-
tion of the singer/songwriter, but there
are strong traces of country, soul and
old-fashioned rock'n' roll in all of their
music. "Streets of Baltimore" is straight
from the Gram Parsons songbook while
"All I Need" references, in rapid suc-
cession, Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan
and Peter, Paul and Mary.
Musically, the band's strength lies
in the harmonies of Tom Meltzer and
Kevin Trainor, who also contributes
some imaginative lead guitar lines, and
the distinct presence of Neil Thomas's
piano and organ. Meltzer and bassist
Paul Foglino turn out evocative sketches
of people vaguely dissatisfied with their
lives, falling in love with waitresses and
nostalgia. Meltzer, apparently lacking
confidence in his songwriting abilities,
wishes, in "The Real Fast Car," to "write
a song as good as 'Visions ofJohanna"'
and wonders, "How will I know I've
done it? How will I realize? / When I
sing it will a vision of you dance before
my eyes?" He need not worry. Though
he may not be at Dylan's level, his
writing is of high quality and catchy and
the band's playing is excellent. With
only an occasional failing, most nota-

bly the silly "Paul Cezanne," "Singer
Songwrtier Beggarman Thief" is a fine
album.
- Dirk Schulze
Gladys Knight
Just for You
MCA Records
With the release of her second
solo album since her break with the
Pips, Gladys Knight is back, un-
touched and unchanged. Her husky
alto voice has remained virtually un-
changed over the years. In "Just for
You," however, a new edge can be
found in her singing style. This is
probably due to the contributions of
hit producers, Jimmy Jam, Terry
Lewis and Babyface in making this
CD.
Simplicity is Knight's trademark.
Her voice and music are about as
straight-forward as they come. "Just
for You" proves to be no exception.
Songs like "Next Time," "I Don't
Want to Know" and "Home Alone"
define the honesty and clarity of all
the nine cuts in this CD.
Knight has never had the most
spectacular voice. The Pips sounded
better (bet that's why she fired 'em).

But what her voice lacks in prowess it
makes up for in power.
Gladys isn't flashy, and neither is
her music. This is what makes her
such a memorable person, and "Just
for You" a remarkable CD.
-Eugene Bowen
Donna Summer
Christmas Spirit
Mercury Records
Christmas, the time of holiday fes-
tivities and stuff, is rapidly approach-
ing. Just look in your local record
store and check out all the Christmas
CDs available. While browsing, you
may come across Donna Summer's
"Christmas Spirit." Buy it.
Donna Summer has brought us
some Christmas favorites like "White
Christmas," "0 Come All Ye Faith-
ful" and "0 Holy Night," as well as a
few lesser knowns like "Christmas Is
Here" and "Christmas Spirit" that are
sure to become favorites.
Donna doesn't sing these songs
the way they were originally sung,
either. Her (pseudo-) operatic voice
brings and added dimension of beauty
to her songs.
-Eugene Bowen

You'll want t akaotti

By FRED RICE
All right, so everybody has papers
and exams to deal with over the next
couple of weeks. You probably don't
have time for the movies, especially a

IF I Don't Want to
Talk About Rt
Directed by Maria
Luis Bermberg;
with Marcello
Mastroiani and
Luisina Brando
subtitled one. And look at the title of
this Argentinean import. There can-
not be a more difficult flick to recom-
mend to a friend.
A friend asks you, what did you
see? You say, "I Don't Want to Talk
About It."
Uh-oh. Dumb joke. But let's not
judge a movie by its title.
The story opens in the 1930s, in an
isolated town. Luisina Brando plays a

mother, living in a state of denial over
her daughter. She can't admit - and
she doesn't want anyone to bring up
the fact - that her daughter is a little
person. Then a mysterious, but
wealthy world traveler arrivesin town.
played by the legendary Marcello
Mastroiani. He can't help falling in
love with Luisina's kid.
Honestly, "I Don't Want to Talk
About It" makes for a good study
break. It has a little bit ot something
for everyone. There is comedy.
There is a touch of magical realismn.
There is high drama and romance.
All of the elements blend together
into a lyrical, fairy tale-like narra-
tive that captivates you.
Of course, pediaphiles should be
forewarned about the romance. The
aging Mastroiani brilliantly under-
scores his uncontrollable obsession
with the 15-year-old in bursts of manic
behavior. Whether he has a cold sweat
from seeing the girl on a horse or
drunkenly challenges a passerby to a
duel, he lounges around in many of
the scenes. He has fun, and does a
good job while he's at it.

BraXnd o as ihe mother is coolly
man ipulative. She di hes out a mix of
bitter nasti ness and sy comic tension,
comic espei ially mn a scene where
she threatens to implicate the town
priest in a most scandalous affair.
Alejandra Podesta as the daugh-
ter, builds up the shell of innocence
and earnestness about her character
and gently cracks it when she meets
the only people that treat her hon-
estJly. as an adult.
It's a shame that parts of the film
overstay their welcome and drag on at
a drowsiness inducing pace.But most
of the moments exude a tremendous
charm and elegance. Not the elegance
of one of those cotton-picking Mer-
chant Ivory productions, but a softer
elegance o f less pretense, that comes
from its more earthly characters.
,And those of you with Spanish ex-
ams on the horizon will all benefit from
the crisp stereo sound that makes the
lines of the characters ultra clear. You
see? You can take a break and prepare
for finals at the same time. Yippee.
I DON'T WANT TOTALK-ABOT
IT is playing at Ann Arbor 1 & 2.

Continued from page 12
the world to be a Detroit band, the guys
in the band actually met and formed
right here in Ann Arbor, where three
members were students at the Univer-
sity. "Some of the best gigs we ever
played were at the Heidelberg," said
bassist Matt O'Brien of the olden days
when Big Chief spent most of its time in
Ann Arbor. Though most of the band
members now live in Detroit, Ann Ar-
boris still important to them; hopefully,
the band will play an Ann Arbor club
sometime in the spring.
Originally from various parts of the
Midwest (with the exception of guitar-
istPhilDurr, whohails fromGermany),
the band members converged on Ann
Arbor in the early-to-mid-'80s. They
hung out as friends long before they
decided to put a band together. In fact,

O'Brien has known Henssler ever since
he was 13 and a roadie for Henssler's
punk rock outfit, the Necros. "We never
had any expectations when we got to-
gether," said Henssler of the band's
initial intent to just hang out and have
fun with it.
For a bunch of friends that never
had any big plans when they started,
Big Chief has been surprisingly suc-

cessful. While avoiding overnight
superstardom as in the case of (insert
name of punk rock band A or grunge
rock band B), the band has been on a
steady climb toward success since
they formed in 1989. Now, finding
themselves signed to the giant Capi-
tol Records and playing the occa-
sional late-night talk show, the band
seems to be quite happy with their

direction. About Capitol's treatment
of the band, Henssler had this to say:
"I'm very, very happy, and I do not
have one thing to bitch about."
If you want to catch Big Chief at
a nice size club while you still can
(and you should really have your
head examined if you don't.), this
Saturday's show at St. Andrew's
would be the perfect opportunity.

Be sure to be there early and be
prepare d orock.
BAG (HIF.: 1bi ow I roof off of
St Andre, Hall this Saurdav.
Doors open at 9 p.im.t>r those of you
18 and over. Tickets are a measly $10
in advance. Make sure you get there
in time for the opening sets by the
Goats and Dandelion. Call (3/3)
961-MELT.

Q uestlon
Th
A FILMBY JOHN SIMBLETON
[[A N G 6

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COLUMBIA PICTURESP S
A NEW DEAL rooimn
A FM BY JOHN SINLEION
"HIGHER LEARNING"
STARRING JENNIFER CONNELLY ICE CUBE
OMAR EPPS MICHAEL RAPAPORI
KRISTY SWANSON
ANfl AIIflF FIHIIR llNF

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