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October 13, 1994 - Image 12

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-10-13

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Weekend etc.- Thursday, October 13, 1994
Discussing R.E.M. with all but the man on the moon

With the release of their latest
album, "Monster", R.E.M. has once
again demonstrated their ability to
tadically change style and produce
great music.
R.E.M. fans cross the musical
spectrum, and their ever-changing
sound has added followers and lost
some fans along the way. With their
last four albums, from Green to Mon-
ster, they have burst into the main-
stream-- and this no doubt irks many
R.E.M. faithful. Here, three fans dis-
cuss how Berry/Buck/Mills/Stipe
have changed from "Gardening at

Night" to "yo, can't find nothing on
the radio."
JL: I heard that Jefferson Holt and
Bertis Downs finished off all of the
"pizza" at Wharehouse Records on
Monday night.
SG: Yeah, and did you know that
Black Francis has led a coup in Ath-
ens, and will now sing lead for R.E.M,
the B-52s and the Butthole Surfers?
JL: Well, there's a definite Pixie-
like sound to this album, notably
"King of Comedy." And that line
about being a "sad tomato" sounds
like a line only Mr. Francis could
MF: Personally, my first exposure

to this album occurred last week as I
sat reading on my Greenwood Ave.
porch. Three strapping young lads
wearing backwards baseball caps,
with Greek letters embroidered on
them, were tossing around the pig-
skin asking Kenneth what the fre-
quency was... That is sad tomatoes,
my friends.
SG: You will never hear them
asking Driver 8 to take a break, dude.
Seriously, their ability to change sty-
listically is remarkable. The chimy
guitars and muffled lyrics of "Chronic
Town" through "Fables" changed to
the hard driving rock of Life's Rich
Pageant and Document which evolved
into the melancholy pop of "Out of
Time" and "Automatic" which
JL: I am disappointed though we
don't have the pleasure of enjoying
the vocals of Mikey Mills, long hair
and all, who still seems unable to
assert himself socially. Poor guy,just

can't seem to land a date.
SG: Yeah, I saw "Superman" on
the MTV Softball joke. He was the
pitcher and nobody wanted to talk to
him. LL Cool J even said that he was
a loser.
MF: I can't understand his limited
role, vocally, throughout all of their
albums. Every song he has sang lead
has been superior to the sometimes
straining voice of Mr Stipe.
"Texarkana," "Superman," and
"Maps and Legends" all are some of
the band's best. "Its CRAZY what we
could have had!!!!" Ouch. Either
sing that an octave lower buddy or
pass the mic to Mills.
JL: I too think Mills is underrated,
but the above is coming from a boy
who co-chaired the Flint, Michigan
Murmur fan club when he was in the
4th grade. Yet now he is more into
The Beautiful South and the Trash
Can Sinatras than R.E.M. But after
that horrible experience at

Wherehouse the other night, when all
of Markley converged on South U
and Church, I might too abandon Stipe
and Co. for The La's.
SG: La's Shmas. Who cares who
else listens, if it is good, it is good.
When their tour begins, I am sure that
the two of you will be there while our
friends from Phi Upsilon Kappa are
in line for the next Spin Doctors al-
bum. Pure unadulterated crap. By the
way, a common misconception is that
R.E.M. is stage-shy. The fact is that
this band made a name for themselves
in the early days by playing shows at
Churches Fried Chickens all over the
MF: Wow, you're just filled with
fun facts Sammy. You are right
though, not even the 89X poster chil-
dren can contaminate the auditory
pleasures this band provides. And
speaking, of a tour, I can't quite tell if
I'm excited or nauseous. On one hand,
I don't have to see B-sides and Boot-

legs entitled, "Radio Song-The tower
of Luv bug mix." ( Since REM re-
fused to go on tour after producing
Out of Time, Warner Bros. released
some not so well know sub-standard
renditions of their work.) On the other
hand, Stipe did vow never to go on a
stadium tour and the idea of seeing
R.E.M. at the Palace of Auburn Hills
sends chunks oozing up my esopha-
gus. Do I smell sell out?
JL: Ooh,FPam, you know just what
I really need.
SG: In no way did they sell out. To
sell out, you change your music to fit
an audience. "Monster" is perfect
evidence that they didn't do this. If
they wanted to sell-out, they wouldn't
have made an album so inaccessible
as "Monster". They would have made
an entire album of "Stand" and
"Drive". "Monster" is inspired from
within, not from without.
JL: Too bad that Kurt Cobain
wasn't around to hear it. "Let Me In"
was for him.

'People' has the times and trials of Simpson

By KIRK MILLER Schiffer/David Copperfield marriage,
The '90s have been kind to "People" has been there to show us
"People"; from Nancy Kerrigan to the triumphs and tragedies of people
anorexic actresses to the Claudia just like you and me (except they're
a wy

rich, famous and have ten times the
dysfunctions). However, with the ar-
rival last week of the complete guide
to the O.J. trial, "People" has taken
IThe Magazine Column I

Jeff Daniels
In person & on screen
To benefit The National Institute For Burn
Medicine & The Purple Rose Theater


the next steop in reclaiming the crown
of trashy exposes from the "National
Enquirer" and "Time."
As a quick program guide, it's a
keeper; there are big glossy pictures
of the dead and accused, a rundown
on all the major players (55 at last
count), a murder timeline, and even
the now obligatory critique of the
media. You know, the media feels
really bad about exploiting this, so
they must end with their weekly con-
fessional to absolve them of sin. Ab-
solved? Great, back to the trial.
It's kind of like buying a program
at a concert, or a football game, for
that matter. There's a Who's Who
guide to the players, although this is
rather skimpy and nothing we haven't
seen before. True "People" facts that
only America's favorite entertainment
magazine could provide are
notorioulsy absent; there is no men-
tion of perennial houseguest Brian
"Kato" Kaelin's recent decision to
move in with Charlie Sheen. When
Charlie was dating other X-rated porn
stars, "People" was there; why stop
The rest of the hit list is little more
than a head shot followed by a brief
description of their role in the trial.
Instead of spreading these out over
eight pages, "People" might as well

have gone the extra yard and made
them into trading cards, which they
would fit perfectly on. As the recent
skyrocketing of prices for O.J. foot-
ball cards proved, kids would kill for
the chance to collect and trade this
wise investment ("I'll swap a Robert
Kardashian for a Paula Barbieri.") In
five years the Kato card might be the
same collector's dream as the Elvis
One way "People" has tried to
tackle the issue delicately is by giving
the whole thing an ironicsnarky twist.
The controversial cup of melted ice
cream at the death scene was deemed
worthless as the "evidence melted
away under scrutiny." Whoa, stop
me, I'm dying here! That's entertain-
By the end the whole issue comes
out like a bad Encyclopedia Brown
story, only missing the last phrase "If
you haven't spotted the flaw(s) inr
O.J.'s testimony, turn to pages 155-
180 to find them." At one time I felt
magazines like "People" were the only
ones who should be running a story -
like this, because it is so out of touch
with the real world. However, as we
see how justice is really being served
for the rich, the state of race relations
in America today and the controversey
over television in the courtroom, the
O.J. trial as moved beyond glossy
tabloid fodder into something much
better served by a well-researched,
book-length novel long after the trial
is over. For now "People" is over
stepping its bounds as a fun trashy
read. Stick with the Best-Dressed list
and Sexiest-Man awards for now, and
leave Americas Most Wanted for the
real writers.

At Michigan Theater
Sunday, October 23, 1994
6:00 Jeff Daniels Autograph session
7:00 Open film discussion with Jeff Daniels
7:30 Purple Rose Of Cairo
9:00 Dessert and Coffee
$100.00 Patron dinner
$20.00 General Admission
$12.50 Student Discount
Visa & Master Card Accepted
For Ticket Info Call:
National Institute For Burn Medicine
(313) 769-9000

4eto 4t.,

O.J. seen in "Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult" as Det. Nordberg.


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