8A -The Michigan Daily - Monday, February 19, 1996
Spirited gospel chorales keep the faith
By Eugene Bowen
Daily Arts Writer,
On Saturday nights, most Univer-
sity students' lives revolve around ac-
cumulating as much sin as possible
upon their souls. But last Saturday
night became one of song, repentance
and prayer, at least for those 300 who
attended the 2nd Annual College Night"
"We have not come to simply per-
form for you," said University Gospel
Chorale Vice President Tonya Frazier.
"We are here to worship with you."
Worship was certainly the word of
the day, and the Gospel Chorale made
that clear. With some 70 members, the
group hit things off with an upbeat
song, "Stranger in Galilee." Choir
members started off standing still, but
Feb. 17, 1996
when the time came for them to move,
they moved. And this wasn't just any
ol' side-to-side motion; this was side-
to-side, forward-and-back and 'round-
n-'round all in the name of the .Lord.
This reverberating energy was kept air-
plane high with "99-1/2 Won't Do."
The Gospel Chorale's most spectacu-
lar song was also its slowest. Perform-
ing "Now Behold the Lamb," the choir
sounded like Kirk Franklin's extended
"Family." Special mention goes to
sophomore Stephanie Culber and first-
year student Emmanuel Dizon for their
outstanding solos during this song.
"Now Behold the Lamb" wastruly beau-
The night was young when the Univer-
sity Gospel Chorale walked offstage and
the Michigan State University Gospel
Chorale took over. The group swayed
like a man-made tsunami through the
high-paced "Any Way You Bless Me."
Other unforgettable performances in-
cluded thesuperb "Holy One"and "Noth-
ing Else Can Protect Me."
Next, the Voices of Western Michi-
gan University Gospel Choir - 15
women, one man strong-took Michi-
gan State's place on stage and per-
formed a virtually a cappella "Down by
the Riverside." With different sections
of the choir repeating different verses
of this age-old spiritual at different
speeds, the Voices hyped the crowd in
every way imaginable.
The Voices garnered much respect
with the slow-sung, emotion-packed
"Praise the Lord." Ninety percent of the
song is simply a constant repetition of
its title. So simple a song, yet with so
powerful a message, "Praise the Lord"
is a superb reminder of what so many of
us need, yet fail to do.
The final song sung by the
University's Gospel Chorale was as
much of a shock to the audience as it
was to the visiting choirs who were
invited to join as one mass choir. The
song was "Shout (In Jesus' Name),"
and that's what everyone did. There
was a sea of colors on stage: the Univer-
sity Gospel Chorale in deep blue robes
with a kente cloth overlay, Michigan
State's white and yellow robes with a
black frontal covering and the Voices
members who wore no robes. The Uni-
versity Gospel Chorale's choreographed
hand, leg and entire-body motions sent
the visiting choirs in a quick daze. But
in the blink of an eye, everyone had
caught onto the motions.
As one University Gospel Chorale
member stated: "We may attend differ-
ent schools, but we are One in the Spirit
and One in the Lord." Well,just wait'til
The 2nd Annual College Night Gos-
pel Extravaganza was as uplifting to the
spirit as its music was pleasant to the
ears. The combined efforts of three dif-
ferent university choirs instilled a sense
of urgency in the worship of God. At a
time when religious conviction is
viewed as corny, out of place and even
almost un-American, the 2nd Annual
College Night Gospel Extravaganza
showed how truly enjoyable a relation-
ship with the Lord can be.
'Beloved cries flawe4
Singers perform at the Second Annual Gospel Extravaganza on Saturday night.
Continued from Page 5A
into what can only be called avant-silly
- in a good way, though. "Peace Mu-
sic" delves into ambient/ethereal terri-
tory, and "Airplane" melds nearly all of
Pizzicato Five's weird, silly, stylish sounds
together. As to be expected with a group
as fashion-forward as this, "The Sound of
Music" is beautifully packaged in a mod
white digi-pak and comes with a "Carte
Pizzicato" fanclub membership card.
The "Unzipped" EP is the micro-mini
version of "The Sound of Music," featur-
ing songs that were included in the Isaac
. Mizhrahi fashion documentary ofthe same
name."Happy Sad,""If IWereaGroupie"
and"CDJ" (all on "The Sound ofMusic")
and a remix of "Happy Sad" appear on
"Unzipped," making it the perfect appe-
tizer to Pizzicato Five. If there's any
justice, not only the hills but the clubs,
parties and runways of the world will be
alive with "The Sound Of Music."
- Heather Phares
Little High Sky Show
Is there such a thing as old-school Irish
folk-rock? If there is, the Drovers might
have been cool "back in the day." Songs
like "Thanks for the Ring" (off of 1993's
"Kill Mice Elf") were good old, foot-
stomping, mandolin-plucking, down-
home jams. The band also put on a stellar
performance as mega-babe Madeleine
Stowe's fellow musicians in the 1993
thriller "Blink." For a while, it seemed
like there was nowhere to go but up.
Unfortunately, the music on the Drov-
ers' latest release, "Little High Sky
Show" doesn't quite live up to the soar-
ing quality its title implies. The band
has made some major sound overhauls,
including the decision not to include
female vocals or the quirky little instru-
ments featured on earlier recordings,
and instead to jam on and on endlessly
in some strange, cerebral combination
of "My Bloody Valentine," "The
Waterboys" and "Phish."
Oh,yes, it's bizarre. But apparently it's
not impossible. The title track "Little
High Sky Show" is actually nothingmore
than afive-minute long instrumental piece
with a few mumbled words in the back-
ground for ambiance. If the music was
great, perhaps that could be forgiven, but
the upbeat folk rock of days gone by has
been thrown aside in favor of a droning,
repetitive, almost electronic sound.
"She's as Pretty as Brian Jones Was"
(also off of "Kill Mice Elf') featured a
bit of the same numbness. The differ-
ence there was that the songs were
nowhere near as extended and the words
were actually intelligible. "Singlewing"
and certain parts of "The Bag" (a 22-
minute long collection of tunes at the
end of the album) are the only songs
that rely more on musical talent than
shimmery engineering tricks (courtesy
of alterna-god Steve Albini).
The Drovers are not playing music to
slug down Guinness and puke to any-
more. Apparently "Little High Sky
Show" is just another album for psy-
chedelic drug users to contemplate while
they drool and stare at their wallpaper.
After all, it's obvious that the "high" in
the title wasn't referring to the heights
the music would reach.
- Kari Jones
Rare on Air: Volume Two
"Rare on Air" is the second volume of
live performances from KCRW's radio
program "Morning Becomes Eclectic"
and features both up-and-coming artists
as well as established performers in a
stripped-down format. As with all vari-
ous artist collections, the quality of the
selections is, well, varied. However,"Rare
on Air" is unusual among this type of
album, as the vast majority of the artists
turn in worthwhile performances.
The album gets off to an almost un-
beatable start with four of the most
interesting artists recording today. The
Japanese female hip-hop duo Cibo
Matto performs their spooky, haunting
trip-hop ballad "Sugar Water," Bettie
Serveert plays their rainy-day classic
"Palomine," Belly's Tanya Donnelly
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from all degree programs. Summer internships
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Tuesday, February 20th
7:00pm - 9:00pm
Michigan League Building
If you are unable to attend, please see our
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contact Terry Gorham at e-mail address
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