10- The Michigan Daily -Wednesday, October 16, 1996
Ladies undress at Ypsilanti concert
By Stephanie Jo Klein
Daily Arts Writer
Despite the fact that it was the 115th perfor-
mance of a 116-show tour for their third album,
"Born on a Pirate Ship," Canadian popsters
Barenaked Ladies literally rocked the house on
Monday night at EMU's Peasd Auditorium, shak-
ing the floor and shaking up the audience.
After opening band Geggy Tab warmed up the
crowd with their wild drum-
beats and hit song "Whoever
You Are;" the crowd was on RI
its feet and screaming for the T
Ladies. People danced in
their seats even before the
group arrived on stage, as EMU'S P
they listened to showtunes
from "Annie," "The Wizard
of Oz" and other Marvin Hamlisch goodies. When
the Ladies did arrive, though, the crowd went wild,
shrieking at the on-stage antics of lead vocalist
Steven Page and guitarist Ed Robertson through-
out the first three songs.
Page, with his glasses and slightly over-sized
frame, looks an unlikely rock 'n' roll front man,
but nevertheless gave an amazing show. Belting
out his throaty, delicious vocals, and kneeling in
front of the crowd to screech to a high note during
"Box Set," on stage Page exhibited none of the
slightly shy airs he gave off in a pre-show inter-
view with The Michigan Daily.
As he sat underneath a shady tree on the EMU
campus, Page said eight years after they started,
the Ladies have evolved into something more seri-
ous than the members originally aimed for.
"Eight years ago, it was just myself and Ed, the
guitar player,' Page said. "It was just two of us and
it was very much a lark. It wasn't something we
took seriously, because we didn't have anything
riding on it. The group has grown since then into a
five-piece and it's also become something that we
do for a living. When you have to rely on it to pay
the bills, you just at the same time try not to lose
sight of the fact that you do it because you like
Oct. 14, 1996
pounding out his
Monday's show definitely
made clear the fact that the
Ladies do love making
music. Between bassist Jim
Creeggan happily plucking
away, new Ladies' key-
boardist Kevin Hearn bob-
bing up and down, and hear-
ing drummer Tyler Stewart's
driving beats and yelling
approach writing lyrics, as if I was writing a
short story, and I try and give it the same kind of
layout and effect a short story has. Hopefully
each one is of a different genre of writing,
because I think musically each song is different
from the next."
The EMU crowd enjoyed the harmony-laden,
folky-pop anthems the Ladies put forth, even
though the group wasn't naked. Although Page
said some colleges have objected to the group's
name before, saying it needlessly objectifies
women, there was no trace of that sort of political
correctness at the show, as one frat boy even threw
an inflatable woman on stage.
Page said the name isn't something the group
would choose now, adding that when he and
Robertson were 17, the name fit. "It's something
we used to say when we were eight or nine years
old. Being in a band reminded us of ... the kind of
feeling we were doing something we weren't sup-
posed to be doing and we didn't really know why
we weren't supposed to be doing it."
The Ladies kept up the energetic, sugar-high
atmosphere throughout the show, with only a few
downbeat songs that let people sit down to breathe,.
with only couples standing up to dance. One of the
most intense points of performance was when
Creeggan, who looked like a skinnier version of
comedian Carrot Top, took the audience on a wild
ride with "I Live With It Every Day." Using a bow
on the electric bass, he played high and low, leav-
ing everyone's ear drums buzzing as he led into the
rest of the song.
And of course, in the end, after "Maybe You Can
Drive" favorites, "Jane," "Intermittently" and a
funky syncopated version of "Life, In A Nutshell,'
better than ever
BLACKstreet is back - half of 'em
anyway. Teddy Riley and Chauncey
Hannibal, the group's co-founders, are
still in the group, but Levi Little and
David Hollister - also featured in the
quartet's 1994 platinum-certified, self
entitled debut LP -are gone
Replacing them are newbies Eric
Williams and Mark Middleton.
They've never sounded better. 0
If their debut release signaled to you
the emergence of a fresh new group, then
"Another Level" is proof positive that the
best has yet to come. With 15 songs and
five interludes, "Another Level" is as
packed as the group's first CD. However,
This is a bunch of fully-clothed menl
"Ypsilanti in the mothafuckin' house!" it was
impossible not to tap your foot or sing along,
laughing all the while.
Some of the humor came from the Ladies'
impromptu material, ranging from a rap by
Robertson and Page about the phallic-looking Ypsi
water tower to their creative and simultaneous
homage to both video games and Michigan's own
Ted Nugent, as they sang "PacMan Fever" to the
tune of "Cat Scratch Fever." Audience members
also cheered for the Ladies' delightfully inventive
lyrics on "Be My Yoko Ono," off their first album,
"Gordon," in which they make fun of the screechy-
voiced bane of the Beatles.
Page said the lyrics he's penned are directly
linked to his personality. "I guess I have the mind
of a fiction writer," he said. "That's the way I
the Ladies let it all loose on "If I Had S1,000,000."
With audience members throwing open boxes of
Kraft Dinner, or Macaroni and Cheese, as we
Americans call it, to mirror the lyrics of the song,
the Ladies let it all hang out, with acoustic guitars,
brilliant harmonies and quirky lyrics shining in the
Once the cheese-dust cleared, the Toronto
natives returned to the stage for two encores with
even more energy and creativity than before. And
of course, they reminded the audience before they
left that to relive the glory they only need wait until
Nov. 19 for their new live album to hit record
stores. If that's still not enough, just head over to
Pease Auditorium and listen - the walls may still
,e\ 1 f
while with "BLACKstreet" you had to
wait until song nine before the jams start-
ed, "Another Level" remains hype from
start to finish.
BLACKstrcet leans heavily on the
more upbeat '90s R&B style as "This Is
How We Roll;" the album's first song,
shows. Following this is "No Diggity,"
featuring the lyrical vibes of Interscope
rapper Queen Pen and former Death
Row Records creative force Dr. Dre.
Hitting more on the '80s Keith Sweat
forms "Good Lovin'." While punchi
out a keyboard version of the mu*
used in 2PAC's "I Ain't Mad at 'Cha"
Teddy Riley begins "Don't Leave Me"
with sounds reminiscent of his dayswith
Guy. BLACKstreet goes even further
releasing a ballad-sounding remake of
"(Money Can't) Buy Me Love." If you
think Whitney did something when she
R&B-ized Dolly Parton's "I Will Always
Love You," then you gotta hear what has
become of this Beatles' classic.
Closing "Another Level" is a devoti*
to He who has made all that
BLACKstreet has done possible.:This
song, "The Lord Is Real (Time Will
Reveal),' follows one of the longest (over
4 1/2 minutes) and most beautiful inter-
ludes I've ever heard: "Motherlude."
Here, the mother of each member speaks
to her son from the heart.
- Eugene Bowen
Les Claypool and the
Highball With the Devil
Well, Les Claypool has done it again.
Just like he did with his band Sausage,
Claypool has made a record that is tons
better than his primary band, Prime'
And while he has some friends.
board, Mark "MIRV" Haggard first
among them, it is really Les's show.
As you might expect, bass is: the
watchword on this album. Often dark
and brooding, almost always the lead
instrument, Claypool's bass is tremen-
dously effective and endlessly more
palatable than on the last three Primus
albums. The same reliance on the
rhythm section is present, but thet .
matics are more subtle and engagii3.
Without the need to live up to expecta-
tions of a certain level of goofiness, the
song writing is much improved.
There's also a more interesting mix of
instrument songs, with distorted guitars
and electric-bowed backsaws among the
sonic-variance roster. Hey, Henry.
Rollins'"voice is one of the new sounds,
too. "Highball With the Devil" is a
frightening album, inasmuch as it showj
just how much Les can really do. WW
one side project album for every Primus
album isn't too bad. It should be enough
to keep everyone happy.
- Ted Watts
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Continued from Page 8
This society, however, does not d
with death very well, which can make
death even more painful that it needs to
"My mother died many years ago
and I guess what I am doing in my the-
ater is what I wish I had done then; You