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December 08, 1999 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-12-08

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The University Euphonium and Tuba Ensemble presents a recital
of works by Bach and Chopin, among others.
School of Music, 8 p.m., free.

abe Sdiiwta&dl

Tomorrow in Daily Arts:
Check out Weekend, etc. Magazine's look at the next
millennium and the would-be apocalypse.

18

Wednesday
December 8, 1999

Boys Choir continues
to impress, succeed

By Greg Bibens
For the Daily
With the frigid weather lurking and
the first snow fall blanketing the
ground, many have begun to prepare for
the winter holidays. One group in par-
ticular has done just that. The world-
renowned Boys Choir of Harlem will

I,
Boys Choir
of Harlem
Hill Auditorium
Tomorrow at 8 p.m.

share its holiday
spirit as it per-
form its concert at
the Hill
Auditorium this
Thursday in its
third University
Musical Society
performance.
Under the
direction of music
phenom and BCH
founder Dr.
Walter J.
Turnbull, the 35-
person touring

conclude the first half of the program.
The second act will invite the audi-
ence into the more contemporary age of
jazz and blues of Gershwin and
Ellington. Gershwin's famous
"Rhapsody in Blue" and "I've Got
Rhythm" and Ellington's "It Don't
Mean a Thing (If It Ain't Got That
Swing)" are among the highlights of the
second half. In the spirit of Christmas,
the choir will close their program with
the Chistmas standard "O Holy Night"
and the Brazilian "Psalms150," which
will show the true musicianship of the
collective voice.
And it is this collective voice that has
thrived ever since its beginning, more
'than 30 years ago. It has nurtured an
extensive resume. The choir has per-
formed locally, nationally and interna-
tionally, and has been the focus, along
with its founder, of several national
media presentations.
Performance venues have ranged
from the Manhattan Plaza AIDS
Project, to the Pepsi Black History
Month Celebration, to special resi-
dencies at several colleges and the-
atres nation-wide. The choir has com-
pleted more than 14 international
tours and has performed at special
national venues, including The
United Nations, The White House
and U.S. Capitol, The Cathedral of St.
John the Divine and Madison Square
Garden, among others. Its latest pop

album, entitled "Up In Harlem," is on
sale now.
Since its formation by Turnbull in
1968 as the Ephesus Church Boys
Choir, the award winning-ensemble
has become recognized international-
ly as a top non-profit vocal organiza-
tion. Today, the Boys Choir of
Harlem is recognized as an educa-
tional institution, comprised of a
boys choir, a girls choir, the Choir
Academy of Harlem (an alternative
college-preparatory public school),
student and family support services
and a Summer Music Institute.
It is within this institution that educa-
tion is expanded, music is explored and
individual integrity and hope is
restored. As their mission statement
relays, "The Boys Choir of Harlem pre-
pares inner city youth to become disci-
plined, confident, motivated, and suc-
cessful Americans."
Today, BCH, is open to all children
regardless of race, creed, color or sex.
Though members are from all boroughs
of New York City, the majority of the
choir members have grown up in "eco-
nomically disadvantaged" single-parent
families in Harlem, a part of Manhattan
known for both its culture and, recently,
crime. According to the U.S.
Department of Education's standards,
97 percent of the BCH student body are
deemed "at-risk for high school
dropout" before enteringTurnbull's pro-

Courtesy of co ^m6a Artists Management
, Gershwin and Bach this Thursday.
Join Turnbull and his critically
acclaimed choir as they demonstrate
their musical sensation this Thursday in
a third appearance under the University
Musical Society auspices. Rush tickets
for students will be available at the
Michigan Union Ticket Office on
Thursday for S10 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
and at North Campus Pierpont
Commons from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
- Tickets are $28, $22, $18, and $12
(sold at UMS box office),
(734) 764-2538.

In its third decade of existence, the Boys Choir of Harlem presents works by Ellington

ensemble, selected from a concert choir
of 200, will perform a selection of
pieces ranging from Bach to Gershwin.
There will even be a holiday segment to
help bring in the winter season.
The choir will present a plethora of
musical styles, presenting the first act
of their program with songs from the
classical periods of Bach and
Monteverdi. Five spirituals, including
"Go Down Moses" and "I Can Tell the
World" arranged by Moses Hogan, will
'Website
shows
p'omise,
bad titles
By Peter Cunniffe
For the Daily
The day people can legally down-
load movies off the Internet has
finally arrived. Web distributed
movies are no longer limited to felo-
niously obtained, poor quality
bootlegs of "The Blair Witch
Project." At Sightsound.com
(wwwsightsound:corm) films with
high picture quality can now be rent-
ed or purchased.
The most impressive quality of
these films is the absence of the usu-
ally jerkiness associated with
movies taken off the Internet. This
feat is achieved by downloading
whole movies and not having to deal
with internet traffic-susceptible
streaming.
The only catch is these films have
to played on Microsoft Windows
Media Player for security purposes
(sorry, no Macs allowed). Pirating of
the films is prevented by the instal-
lation of a licensing key that is
downloaded onto a user's hard drive
with the movie and is necessary to
view it. The key expires after a cer-
tain period of time for rentals.
This should be a glorious day for
movie buffs everywhere and espe-
cially college students, whose high
speed internet connections make this
technology especially attractive.
So far, Sightsound.com's available
titles include some of the most terri-
ble movies imaginable.
Sightsound.com admits to carrying

gram. But, past statistics have acknowl-
edged that 98 percent of the graduating
choir members have gone on to college.
As part of the preparation, the institu-
tion continues to expand educational
resources and college preparatory pro-
grams, including the addition of a
Multi-Media Library and Learning
Center and computer and language
learning labs.
Once enrolled, it is through the use of
music and-choral study that each mem-
ber is molded into a future citizen of

America. With the discipline fostered
by Turnbull, members acquire the skills
necessary for team work and concentra-
tion and develop a sense of self-respect
and respect for those around them.
As Turnbull said in the Center of
Substance Abuse newsletter, "A choir is
a good starting place for building char-
acter, and integrity ..." This Thursday
the choir members will bring these
characteristics as well as their musical
ability to Hill Auditorium, encouraging
the holiday spirit.

i

Fantomas shines in Detroit

Courtesy of Troma Team
"The Toxic Avenger" is perhaps the most respectable film available on Sightsound.com.

only independent films at the
moment, but neglects to mention
:hat they are probably the worst
-,ovies ever made. Anyone up for
'Dogs: The Rise and Fall of an All-
Girl Bookie Joint?" Or how about a
fun evening of "Killer Condom?"
Some extreme sports videos and
classic terrible movies such as "The
Toxic Avenger" and "Tromeo and
Juliet" are also carried on
Sightsound.com.
Most surprisingly, the
"Sexual/Erotic" section, which real-
istically is the part of the site most
likely to attract customers, contains
only four movies, a shockingly small
number in the giant pornography
outlet that is the internet.
Sightsound.com really should have
waited until it had some real movies
to sell or at least descent indepen-
dent films before launching its site.
Aside from its roster of unappeal-
ing, traditionally produced films,
Sightsound.com will also be the
venue for the release of the first
movie specifically made for distrib-
ution over the internet, "The
Quantum Project," a $3 million,
part-CGI film about the mystical
experience of a physicist.

It is disappointing that the first
movie ever made for the internet
sounds like it will be absolutely ter-
rible and about on par with
Sightsound.com's other products.
But Sightsound.com is not limited
only to bad movies. It also has a sec-
tion that sells independent music.
Again, the site really should have
waited until it could sell some well-
known work before launching this
feature.
Some of this music may actually
turn out to be be very good, but why
would anyone pay for music they
have never heard of when they can
get it for free at MP3.com?
There is nothing worth visiting
Sightsound.com for at the moment.
A web site dedicated to providing all
.the movies people would never rent
from a conventional video store does
not seem to be a terribly good busi-
ness plan.
Sightsound.com would have a
great concept if they could manage
to get a hold of anything a sizable
number of people would want to
watch and they are working on that
goal at the moment. But for now at
least, its back to "The Blair Witch
Project."

By Ted Watts
Daily Arts Writer
Throw together Mike Patton and Trevor Dunn from
Mr. Bungle, Buzz Osborne from the Melvins and Dave
Lombardo from Slayer, and you get the noisy combo
known as Fantomas.
More to the point you get them in the festively deco-
rated with colored lights and homeless people winter
wonderland which is downtown Detroit.
Initiated by Patton as more or less a solo project, the
band's initial output was quite experimental and indi-
vidual. The rest of the group signed on for an album and
mixed in some richer sounds and some different exper-
iments.
Hardly anyone thought the band would do anything
resembling a tour, but somehow Fantomas snuck into
St. Andrew's Monday night to a surprisingly well
briefed crowd familiar with the
,, sometimes murky output of the col-
lective. The quartet pulled off the
- impossible and translated their self
Fantomas titled debut to the stage.
St. Andrews Hall, Opener Kid 606 seemed chosen to
Detroit be even more oblique than the head-
Monday, December 6, liners. If you picture a subwoofer
1999 hooked up to a laptop and a guy
with an interesting rhythmic sense,
then you have pictured Kid 606. His
set was like an amusement ride that
comes close to vibrating out any
dental work you might have; fun but
bordering on dangerous to your
bodily structure.
Fantomas took the stage around 10:15, after eerie
shadows of Buzz's huge hair had been dancing around
the backdrop. Patton began by baiting the crowd by
pointing out the city was the point of genesis for a cer-
tain musical celebrity. At the negative crowd reaction,
Patton quipped "You're booing me? You grew up here.
It's your fault. Kid. Rock."
In spite of also threatening to play all of Kid Rock's
hits, Buzz's prints were all over the guitars and Patton's
experimental side underlay the structure of the whole
thing. Lombardo's stomach punching drumming was
also strong in the mix, especially on the Slayer medley.
This is an odd choice; Lombardo is not one of the
more high profile members of the band, and is also no
longer with Slayer. The very inappropriateness of it may

be the reason for its inclusion. Even more sonically out
of place was a funky little love song, contrary to the rest
of the set. While punctuated by a super-fast hardcore
verse or two, the song was largely a straight ahead bal-
lad. Intended as a little something to clear the palate, it
usefully broke up the strong and somewhat " uniform
program of the evening.
The set as a whole was full of recognizable tracks,
quite the feat considering the less than catchy nature of
the album. Vocals were more on the order of primal
vocalizations, arranged in a musical way, and song
structure was largely short, chaotic and noisy while
retaining a compelling order, somewhere between the
John Zorn noise jazz and the general noise rock camps.
There's a certain level of excitement when you're
dealing with either members of Mr. Bungle or the
Melvins. When the two get combined, there is a crystal-
lization of expectation; people who like one or the other
are excited, and those who like both are nearly foaming.
This complicates matters when the combination is
nothing like its component elements. This can be good
like chocolate mixed with peanut butter, or bad like
"The Flintstones meet the Jetsons."
This concert favored the Reese's side, but the crowd
was largely well behaved. During the many silent paus-
es within songs the rowdiest fans were screaming out
various song titles from the members' other bands. With
any big band this pretty much has no effect; all it did at
St. Andrew's was make Patton threaten Kid Rock songs.*
Monday's concert was promising for the future of
Fantomas. If the band continues in this direction, it may
become a genuine underground supergroup. Still, when
Patton asked people if they were going to call in to the
local radio station and request a particularly cacopho-
nous number, everyone knew he was kidding.
The band's behavior on stage does not exactly
inspire wide popularity either. All four men largely
stood around. Patton himself was planted behind his
effects table as he has been in his recent outings, in
contravention of his traditional mode of hyper-kinetic
behavior. This may allow him to perform more com-
plex vocal acrobatics, or maybe he's just gotten lazy.
Either way, it seems to be an increasingly entrenched
position.
The constituent members of Fantomas continue to
work with their other groups. Just hope they keep their
mutual collective going and nurture it into a raging
avant Apollo strumming randomly on his lyre.

A'

_______________________________________________

URO P
1-1-
lri

Informational Meeting
For Undergraduate Summer 2000
Research Fellowship Opportunities
When? Wednesday, December 8,
6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Where? Angell Hall, Auditorium C
IAl l C I ilul~ ,A-ienrlarrirm i ucec

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