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January 13, 1995 - Image 10

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-01-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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HARLEM SPIRITUAL ENSEMBLE SINGS SONGS FROM THE LAND

'Vid Grid' scrambles past and future fun

By BRIAN A. GNATT
Geffen records has launched itself into
the multimedia world of interactive soft-
ware with their CD ROM rock-video-
moving-puzzle- game "Vid Grid."
The idea behind "Vid Grid" is the
same as puzzles have been for hundreds
of years - take an image, break it into a
number of pieces, and then put it back
together. However, when that image is
an actual music video that is playing
while you're trying to piece it together,
it seems clear that the traditional card-
board puzzle needs to catch up with the
90s, and walk itself down to the nearest
recycling center.
Plain and simple, "Vid Grid" is an
awesome, ass-kicking piece of soft-
ware that any music fan should own.
The game features 10 top name videos
including Peter Gabriel's "Sledgeham-
mer," Guns N' Roses' "November
Rain," Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Give It
Away" and a rare video of Jimi
Hendrix's "Are You Experienced?"
There are five levels to "Vid Grid,"
Level 1 being the easiest. To begin,
players choose from any of the nine
regular videos (excluding one that can
only be seen after completing all five
levels), and the game breaks the video
into nine pieces (three by three). After
the video begins to play, use the mouse
to pick up, and then drop the pieces in
their correct position. The video is the
time limit, and when it is over, so is your
time.
The first level is fairly easy, and
being familiar with the videos also helps.
For example, most people have seen
Aerosmith's "Cryin"' on MTV more
times than they would like to remem-
ber, but finally it all pays off. Matching
up parts of Alicia Silverstone's head is
actually fun, and gives the video new
life.

After the first level though, the game
gets exponentially more difficult. The
puzzles increase from nine pieces, to 16
and 25, and the game also adds new
playing twists. When the game begins
to screw with the video's orientation, it
starts to get tricky. In one mode, the
entire video is pl.yed upside down, and
in another the video plays right side up,
but some of the pieces are upside down,
and you have to figure which those are,
flip them, and then solve the puzzle.
However, these are still solvable.
Then puzzle movement moves away
from the simple pick up and move
mode to a perfection mode, where ev-
ery piece has to put in its correct place
orelse the entire puzzle scrambles again.
There is alsoaslider mode, wherepieces
cannot be picked up. They have to be
slid around the puzzle only through
open spaces. This makes the game ex-
tremely difficult, and sometimes even
virtually impossible.
Although some modes are more diffi-
cult than others, some videos are also
t/)'q
4 .\ h

much easier than others. Van Halen's
"Right Now" is easier than most because
the words in the video can be matchedup
easily in the puzzles. However,
Soundgarden's "Spoonman" is the most
difficult, because of the constantly mov-
ing shots andcinematography. Metallica's
live track for "Enter Sandman" is also
difficult because of the dark background
in the video.
If you just want to play around with
the game, there is a custom mode where
the player chooses the combination of
videos and levels of difficulty. How-
ever, the only way to find the hidden
10th video is to get through all ive
levels of "Vid Grid."
Thevideoquality ofthegame isexcel-
lent for CD ROM, but the sound isn'i- as
good as an audio CD, because the audio
had to be compressed to fit both video and
audio onto the one disc. However, "Vid
Grid" is an excellent and essential game
foranymusicenthusiast,andclearlypoints
to what the future of puzzles will be made
of.
MINIM c

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In honor of the 1995 celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, the University Musical Society presents the
Harlem Spiritual Ensemble which will perform a concert FREE to the the public at Hill Auditorium at 7 p.m. on
Sunday.
Founded in 1986 by Francois Clemmens, the Harlem Spiritual Ensemble is dedicated to preserving the sounds
of the traditional Negro spirituals. In the nine years since its founding, the Harlem Spiritual Ensemble has
garnered dozens of international praises and awards for its presentation of the American slave legacy through
songs sung using a type of vernacular and emotional spirit unparalleled by all except for the slaves
themselves.
The Harlem Spiritual Ensemble - comprised of six singers, a pianist and a percussionist - does not perform
gospel songs; the members sing spirituals.
"There is a difference between spirituals and gospels," Clemmens explains. "Spirituals are folk songs - music
from slavery - and depend on the rich, natural texture of the human voice for its power. (Gospel music) is more
urban, more composed and employs more instrumentation. Spirituals are, esentially, songs from the land."
The FREE tickets may be picked up today or Friday inside the Burton Memorial Tower from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. or
on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tickets may also be picked up on Sunday at Hill Auditorium from 5:30 p.m.
until the start of the concert at 7 p.m. There is a four-per-person ticket limit.'

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