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November 22, 1996 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-11-22

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Women's Glee Club Annual Fall Concert
The Women's Glee Club and the Harmonettes will be performing their
annual fallconcert featuring a cornucopia of pieces, including "A
Ceremony of Carols" by Benjamin Britten. The concert begins at 8
o'clock on Saturday night at Hill Auditorium. School of Music Dean
Lynne Aspnes will be playing the harp. Tickets are $5 for students, $7

November 22, 1996


,When 'Chenry Pi~e' gets a little stale W(v
Wrrant fights to stay alive in the alternative music erap}_
i. r .< mu.N.rr

By _lmn A. Gnatt
tiArts Editor
Nrvana's power chords and Pearl
Jam' genuine lyrics may have thrown
} '80!i"air bands like Warrant, Cinderella
and Motley Crue off the charts, but
altrntive music hasn't killed them all
ye ome are still hanging on to their
maggr label ties by an unraveling thread,
buL thers like Warrant have moved on
to underground indie labels, completing
the flip-flop that took place in the music
world at the beginning of the decade.
For Warrant, the days of "Cherry
Pie" are long gone - no more big hair,
no more stadiums, no more spraying
girls with firehoses on MTV and no

more big bucks from major record
In reality, many of the '80s hard rock
groups traded places with the top-selling
alternative bands of today. In the post-
grunge era, Warrant
calls indie label
CMC International P
home, along with
L.A. Guns, Yes and
a few other hard Saturd
rock buddies.
Warrant has with LA. Guns andE


After the reality of Warrant's situa-
tion set in, the band went through a
complete facelift. Members cut their
once poofy hair, grew their sideburns
and traded the torn
acid-washed jeans
E V I E W for some more
respectable wear.
Warrant The music has
, doors open at 8 p.m. changed signifi-
At Harpo's in Detroit cantly too, with the
ng Tango Tix: $13.50 songs taking more
of an Alice In

released two albums
on the label, the most recent being "Belly
to Belly" which hit stores last month.
With original members Jani Lane
(vocals), Erik Turner (guitar) and Jerry
Dixon (bass), Warrant is carrying on,
facing the fact that the days of selling
out arenas around the world are over.
The band still hits the road playing
clubs, bringing classics like "Heaven,"
"Down Boys," "I Saw Red," "Uncle
Tom's Cabin" and of course, "Cherry
Pie" to its fans.
"It's a struggle," Lane admitted in a
telephone interview with The Michigan
Daily. "But we just get out there and
play everywhere where they have elec-
tricity. and do that street-level kind of
marketing for the band, and as long as
the people keep coming out, we'll keep

Chains or Stone Temple Pilots feel as
opposed to the standard hair band
shtick. Nevertheless, radio and MTV
aren't interested in the new Warrant,
and the band has been unsuccessful
breaking into the mainstream.
"It's very difficult to get radio play
right now with the stigma that sur-
rounds the band, although the band
sounds much different than it did back
in the 'Dirty Rotten' and 'Cherry Pie'
days," the 32-year-old Lane said. "I
don't think bands like us will get played
until it becomes a little less fashionable
to hate us, and the alternative thing
becomes a little more passe and redun-
dant, which it's on its way to."
Lyrically, Lane has been reaching
deeper into his soul to write more per-

sdnal songs for Warrant and for an
acoustic-based solo project he's been
working on. He said when Warrant was
on the Columbia record label for its
debut "Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking
Rich," and the "Cherry Pie" and "Dog
Eat Dog" albums, he wasn't allowed to
write some of the darker songs which
he would have liked to write. Now that
the band's image has changed, he said
he's been able to write more songs from
his heart.
"I had a lot of positive and a lot of
negative things happen, but I was never
allowed to talk about the negative
things, because that was a no-no," Lane
said. "We were supposed to be a happy
hair band from California."
Even though Warrant is still cranking
out the tunes, it would be difficult to top
the double-platinum success of 1990's
"Cherry Pie" -- the song, the video and
the album. The steamy video featured
model Bobbi Brown (who Lane later
married) being sprayed by band mem-
bers with a firehose, having a piece of
cherry pie dropped in her lap and suck-
ing on her finger. With lots of juicy t &
a shots, the video epitomized the sex-
laden hard rock video.
"'Cherry Pie' sort of became our
nemesis," Lane said. "I took it very
tongue and cheek, and it was supposed

Warrant in 1996 with frontman Jani Lane (
to be fun and not taken seriously, and it
was supposed to be bubblegum-pop-
metal-rock whatever you want to call it
- a fun song.
"Of course we were marked as sexist
pigs after the video," he continued. "I
knew we weren't. I'm very respectful
towards women. I've never been that
kind of a person. The video was sup-
posed to be funny, and it was taken (to
be) very sexist. For God's sake, I ended

up marrying the girl that I was suppo -
edly treating like a chauvinistic pi-. in
the video. We're divorced now, but t
because I'm a sexist pig."
Success or not, Lane said he
Warrant plan to chug on, doing W
they like doing best - making nmus.
"Whatever we did, we did it well, sore
need to apologize," he said. "It wa'jp
back then, and it's a bit passe now; >
you move on and try to stay relevaiI

Warrant during the band's heyday.


still 'Mimn
By Mark Feldman
Daily Arts Writer
Trying to live up to the success of an
album is nearly as difficult as having a
successful album in the first place. The
Crash Test Dummies, still best known
fortheir 1994 album "God Shuffled His
Feet" and its top-10 single "Mmm
Mmm Mmm Mmm," are doing just that
this year, having recently released the
follow up album "A Worm's Life" and
embarking on a world tour that hits
Detroit tonight.
How does the new album compare to
its predecessor? "This record is more
aggressive," singer Brad Roberts said in
an interview with The Michigan Daily.
"The drums are mixed louder, there's
more guitar, less synthesizer, the pro-
duction is less slick. I'm very happy
with it."
One thing that hasn't changed,
though, is the fascinating array of topics
covered in his lyrics. Roberts' musings
on animals, science, unusual children
and inanimate objects are as present as
"I'm trying to avoid writing about the
more cliched subjects in pop music,
because I'm interested more in bending
the rules. So ani- _
mals tend to creep
in, Roberts said.
"I like to give the
point of view of a
narrator rather than
an outsider" At the F
And while sever-

Basement Arts
By Emily Achenbaum
For the Daily

Basement Arts' latest student production, "No Man's
Land" by Harold Pinter, may sound like a play with minimal
appeal to college students: It's the story of an old man who is
about to die. But don't brush this play off. If you have ever
had out-of-town friends wear out their welcome when crash-
ing in your dorm room or if you have ever been unsure about
your future, you can relate to this play.
"No Man's Land" is the story of Hirst (Rob Sulewski), an
old, rich man who invites a guest, Spooner (James Ingagiola),
into his house for a drink. Hirst has two servants (Mandy
Politziner and Jeff Steiger) that he is completely dependent
on, giving them more power over him
then he has over them. Spooner is poor
and Hirst tries to convert him into being P I
another one of his servants, a plan that ~)N
goes awry. N
Rob Sulewski, who stars as Hirst, has Th
previous experience working on Pinter's s
dramas. Last January he was involved At the Arena Theat
with a production of "The Pinter
Review." Sulewski then came across "No Man's Land" and
introduced the play to Basement Arts. Though not Pinter's
most frequently performed piece, the theme of finality, with
appropriately hilarious moments, stuck out to Sulewski.
Sulewski also has been credited as director of "No Man's
Land," which is only a quarter correct. The four members of the
cast have been sharing the responsibility of advising each other.
"This is a different type of experimental theater; no direc-
tor," Sulewski explained. Instead, the four actors have been
equally critiquing each other, creating a group direction of the
piece. "It's like the audience is always there, even in
rehearsal," Sulewski said. "The input we are getting from one
another is helpful. We are getting specific comments."
Sulewski has found being a director as well as an actor in
the play a welcomed challenge. Usually seated in the director's
chair, he finds it a nice break to get up on stage. However, the

tackles Pinte;
dual role brings more pressure. "To a certa extent, a direcr
can hide during a performance," Sulewski said. On centcr
stage, however, there's no place to hide. Suiwski has found it
difficult to be in a scene and then be able to separate himiil f
enough from it to step back and critique 4, but he says tie
experience has been rewarding and has had a positive imipact
on the cast and the production.
With the experimentation in this play being its method of
self-directing, the cast has chosen to keep the productio'nes
true to Pinter as possible. There is no cutting of lins or
stage directions. "We're trusting Pinter implicitly," "
Sulewski with a smile, his respect for the playwright appar-

o Man's Land
rough Saturday at 7 p.m.
turday matinee at 4 p.m.
er (in Frieze Bldg.), Free.

The cast is also explaing the themes
Pinter laid out as much as possible.
Sulewski explained that the play has
overtones of "finality and finishedness."
He feels the play addresses issues we
will all face, if we don't already face
them now.
"This play gets to the point of existen
but then there's more then that," Sulew.

es Benjamin Darvill, Ellen Reid, Brad Roberts, Mitch Dorge and Dan Roberts.


and his experiences as the source. "I
often get (my lyrics) from a conversa-
tion, a book I've just read, a quote from
the news on TV, or a commercial. I take
the fragments I write down and look for
a theme. You have to be real critical
when you write lyrics, and keep going
until it's good," he
E V I E W As far as the
Crash Test music itself is con-
Dummies cerned, both "A
Worm's Life" and
Tonight at 7 p.m. 'God Shuffled His
al Oak Music Theatre Feet" are full of
instantly appealing melodies and studio
tricks reminiscent more of '80s and ear-
lier British pop such as XTC and
Squeeze than of modern rock.
"We have become studio freaks

because of XTC," Roberts said, "which
is very much in opposition to the whole
'alternative' thing."
In fact, the Dummies regularly cover
XTC's "The Ballad of Peter
Pumpkinhead" in concert. But their
influences are not limited to XTC. One
of Roberts' first favorite childhood
songs was Charlie Daniels' "Uneasy
Rider," and he became a certified mem-
ber of the Kiss Army at age 12; it was
none other than the legendary Ace
Frehley that inspired him to learn gui-
The Crash Test Dummies are an
eccentric outfit, and that eccentricity
should come out very well in concert.
There ought to be a place for a band like
this in any time, and a place beyond that
of a one hit wonder.

said. The play is not plot-heavy or too serious. He promi~ps
moments of hilarity and quite an ending.
"(The ending) is really quite a piece of gold. I don't itt
to give it away," Sulewski said. He explained that the ali-
ence will have a good time because it will enjoy what is lbeg
portrayed. He hopes the audience will walk away thinkng
about its own situation and its own purpose. "TIte play aes-
n't give answers, but better articulated questions," Sule*ki
At some point, everyone wonders what they are going t),o
with themselves, and then they move on. The interestingI
in "No Man's Land" is that Hirst has done it all, he is a-6
man, possibly dying, who has reached the end of his lifeOut
he still has the last part of his life to live out. 'No MW 's
Land" asks what should be done when there's reay noting
left to do.

Folk artist Curtis returns to Ark on Saturday

al internet newsgroups exist solely for
the purpose of finding the hidden
sources of Crash Test Dummies lyrics
in obscure mythology or other unlikely
places, Roberts often uses only himself

By Eugene Bowen
Daily Arts Writer
A good friend of mine once
described contemporary folk artist
Catie Curtis as a white Tracy Chapman.
Students have a chance to feel the

power of Curtis' diverse messages when
she returns tomorrow to the Ark.
Curtis, a social
worker prior to the
release of her first PR
album "From Years
to Hours,' said in a
recent interview
with The Michigan
Daily that she
"found the work pretty satisfying, doing
home visits with the elderly. It was an
opportunity to provide some pretty con-
crete support systems for frail, low-


income, elderly people. But tohe whblk
time, the goal has really been to
music whe* I fe I
was ready. Music
E V I E W has been the cOn-
atie Curtis stant threed
throughout my
Saturday at 8 p.m. life."
at The Ark Cri ecie
Tickets are $11. Curtis derid
how she gets ideas
for the socially conscious leanings her
music oftentimes takes, saying, "I get a
lot of material from really perso


Highlights from the 313-99-MUSIC -

Urphans of the stonn

a silent film classic
with live orchestral
accompaniment by the


.." ,n r7


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