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March 22, 1996 - Image 10

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-03-22

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10 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, March 22, 1996
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the verve pipe * vilains
photograph, cup of tea

{'" .

These Cows just want to have some fun.
Band is too weird to be a cash cow

Unique group not ready to ride in the

the

verve

pipe

villa ins
available at Schoolkids' for only

By Ted Watts
Daily Fine Arts Editor
It's been about a year, but the Cows
are coming back to the area. The
band's been around for about nine
years and are about to release their
eighth album, "Whorm." In that time,
the band has had their ups and downs,
but has always stumbled through them
THE COWS WITH
MOUNT SHASTA
AND THE PLUMBOBS
Where: Majestic Theater
When: Saturday, March 23, 1996
Doors open at 9 p.m.
Call 313-833-9700 for ticket
information
to create some of the most entertain-
ing modern music around, based on
distorted guitar, bass, drums and vo-
cals.
Bassist Kevin Rutmanis spoke of
various tribulations, from broken re-
lationships because of touring, to a
dog's attempt to have sex with him
during this interview. The dog seemed
to bother him the most.
But he still enjoys his work. The same
cannot be said of former drummer Norm
Rogers: "I think he just got sick of the
traveling and was burnt out. He just said
to us after our last batch of touring last
spring, 'Guys, I've had enough.' And we
were 'Well, is there anything we can do to
make you want to stay?' 'Naw, I'm just
really sick ofall the traveling and shit.' So
I think the playing just wasn't really any
fun for him any more, and when that
happens, the touring really sucks. So we

hada few months off, regrouped, decided
we wanted to keep going, so we found a
new guy, who we just really love a lot.
He's great.
"His name is Fred Votel. Actually,
we've known him since we started be-
cause he was in anotherbandaroundhere,
called TVVC, that started around the
same time we did. He was a youngster,
about 20. Thor kind of kept in touch with
him over the years. I didn't see him that
much. And then those guys weren't doing
anything anymore, so Freddy came and
played with us a few times and it was
obvious right away that he's much better
than pretty much any drummer you'd
care to name. So we recorded an album
with him, did a couple short tours and we
just got back from six weeks in Europe
and he was fabulous every night. "
The lineup isn't the only change for
the band. The sound on "Whom" is a
significant progression for the group.
Some songs on it are extremely re-
moved from what people have come to
expect from the band.
"The Warden" moves fairly slowly
and evilly, entrancing the listener with
the smoothness of the music and the
crackly vocals. The wild vigor that
the band has become known for is less
prevalent, and the more subtle sound
the band hinted at on their last album
is becoming more pronounced.
"It was the first time we were able to
record an album totally live, vocal tracks
included. There's almost no overdubs
on this album. 'Whom' is by far the
livest album we've ever done, which I
think helps the performance," Rutmanis
explained.
Oddly enough, the album still sounds
a bit more produced than previous al-

mainstream rodeg
bums. "That is weird, because it took
two weeks to record that album. But it's
still just 16 track, nothing fancy."
Soon you'll have a chance to compare
some of the band's earlier work with the
new album, as a compilation of material
by the band is soon to be released. "AmRep
has a relationship with Atlantic, and I
think they didn't want to keep our whole
back catalog in print, so they put as much
of our first three records (on AmRep)
one CD as they could fit and put it out'
together." There won't be anytracks from
the band's actual first album, which is
controlled by an extremely small label
that doesn't really seem to want to let
people hearthe album, asitremains largely
unknown.
But the .Cows shouldn't remain
largely unknown. Soon after theirgig in
Detroit this weekend they'll be touring
with Primus, even returning to the a
in two weeks. And while the bandf
preciates the exposure the tour affords
them, they make a third to a fourth of
the money they would at their own
shows, which is as good an argument as
any to buy their merchandise at the
shows: When you subsidize bands you
like, you might very well conitinueto
get albums from them.
The Cows remain fairly unmarket-
able because of their fairly intense con-
tent, however. There is little risk*w
encountering them on MTV in the fore-
seeable future. "A lot of labels look at
us and scratch their heads because they
really like us but can't figure outhow to
make any money off of us." It is there-
fore up to the fans to support them. So
just go and do it, or maybe the dog
Rutmanis encountered during the inter-
view might come after you.

Meet the Verve Pipe at

U U

Give us

a

piece o

your m

J

A summer is a terrible thing to waste. Particularly when Grand Valley
State University makes it so convenient to catch up or pull ahead
while you're home on break.
GVSU is offering an expanded course selection this summer
at our campuses in Allendale and Grand Rapids, and Centers in
Holland and Muskegon. It's a perfect time to pick up that class you
missed because of scheduling conflicts or to choose an elective not
offered by your college or university.
Registering as a guest student is as easy as making
a phone call. Tuition is affordable and classes are taught by faculty,

DlLfY /dr

4

I

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