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March 06, 2001 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2001-03-06

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Professor shares poetry....
Professor Alice Fulton reads from
Felt, her new collection of poems,
tonight at Shaman Drum. 8 pm.


michigandaily.com /arts

MARCH 6, 2001



Weezer finds
self knee-deep
n tour, hype
By Luke Smith
Daily Music Editor
Behind the catchy ruefulness of "Buddy Holly,"
and the irony-rich wit of "Undone (The Sweater
Song)," it appeared Weezer was going to become a
.mainstay in pop music. Rivers Cuomo's infectious
ear for melody and catchy love
} songs Weezer would surely be a
staple of the post-grunge rock
movement. They would tour
Weezer and head back into the studio
putting out a new album every
State Theater year and a half. That is the way
Thursday at 7:30 p.m. pop music works, right?
Following the commercial
bust of Pinkerton, a concept
album mirroring Giaccomo
Puccini's Madame Butterfly, in
which Cuomo transformed the
morally bankrupt Captain
Pinkerton into a jaded rockstar
who sleeps with different
women from town to town; Weezer completely van-
ished from the limelight. One magazine falsely
reported that Cuomo had gone insane, burned all the
Pinkerton master tapes and could be found holed up
in a studio bouncing a rubber ball off the walls.
Instead, Weezer did indeed part ways after their
supporting tour for Pinkerton. Drummer Pat Wilson
took his side project the Special Goodness, on the
road, Brian Bell set out to make a name for the Space
Twins, and Matt Sharp ultimately left the band in
favor of his side project the Rentals who had a minor
radio hit with "Friends of P" on their debut album
Return of the Rentals.
Cuomo and Co. found a new bassist in former
Juliana Hatfield bassist Mikey Welsh, and set out to
record a new record in 1998. A few weeks into the
sessions Pat Wilson walked out due to the lack of the
Spring of 2000 brought Cuomo's recall to the
estranged member of the pop-quartet saying he had
material he was ready to present to the band, and
start Weezer back up as a full-time endeavor again.
The band regrouped, rehearsed and set out on a few

Get Up Kids, Ozma
bring pop-smarts to
Outloud's spring tou?

By Luke Smith
Daily Music Editor
1999's Something to Write Home
About lived up to its namesake entirely,
creating a stir on indie-label Vagrant
Records. Kansas-born rock quintet the
Get Up Kids began to develop a hard-
core fanbase with strong EP releases on
Doghouse Records, and fair sales fig-
ures for their 1997 full-length Four
Minute Mile. After taking a brief hiatus
last winter the Get Up Kids were nabbed
by alt- pop-punk trio Green Day for their
winter tour.
"Initially we had planned to take 2001
off," Get Up Kids drummer Ryan Pope
said. a plan which was promptly mon-
key-wrenched by hard to turn down
offers from Green Day, and a
Weezer/Yahoo! Outloud corporate
alliance. If the Get Up Kids had been
interested in touring they could have
headlined their own tour, but "It was a
good package and we are fans of the
band," remarked Pope. "Plus, there is a
lot of crossover between our fans, I
think." Pope couldn't have been more
correct, as the Get Up Kids finished first
in an online poll conducted by Weezer as
to who fans would most like to see them
tour with. Fellow tour special guests
Ozma were voted second in the same

Once the Outloud Tour is over Pope
said that the Get Up Kids plan to "take
time off, and write material and get into
a studio," to record the anticipated fol-
low-up to STWHA. Pope said he hopes
the record would be out in "late f11
2001, or early 2002"
The story is a different read all togeth-
er for California co-eds Ozma who have
built a considerable fan base in
California and have sporadic holdings of
fans throughout the country; the only
thing missing from their fairy tale is a
soft kiss on a sleeping maiden's lips.
Ozma's blend of pop chord changes,
harmony and melody, all wrapped inside
a careful wall of sound vaguely resemble
tour headliner Weezer. But where Rivers
Cuomo's lyrics explicitly describe *
experiences of a 20 something, Ozma's
tunes both reflect and invoke feelings of
high school nostalgia.
Pop-culturally aware songsmith
Daniel Brummel frequently ties staples
of his youth into his songs, "In Search of
1988," and "Lorraine," the latter of
which is a song hung around a '50s style
riff pining for the mother of Marty
Both bands have experienced posi
fan reaction on the first half of the tour,
and there's no question why.

Cortsyo Kr >Kch

"Hey could someone fix my collar? I'm trying to rock." Rivers Cuomo, ladies and gentlemen.

small club dates.
In the summer of 2000 Weezer played a few early
club dates in California, then were asked to join the
Warped Tour for a leg, and when the success of both
outings grew Weezer launched into a nationwide
club tour. The summer nationwide canvassing met
Weezer head on and they proceeded to sell out every-
where they played, tickets for Chicago and New York
lasted just minutes on internet pre-sales.
Fresh off of their summer tour Weezer headed into
the studio to record their follow-up to Pinkerton.
They tabbed Ric Ocasek (Cars' frontman, and pro-
ducer of Weezer's eponymous debut) for production
duties. Entering the studio in the wake of Christmas
Weezer wrapped mastering the day before their
Yahoo sponsored spring tour kicked off last month.
When the new album was played at Interscope
offices three weeks ago it was met with a complete-
ly different response than Weezer had expected. Just
a few days into recording the new record, Interscope
executives stopped by the studio to hear the new
material, and proceeded to voice their discontent
with Weezer's new material. However, when they

were played the completed version of the record they
recanted their previous statements, "loving" the new
material. However, Interscope promptly and quizzi-
cally pulled the original release date of April 17th
2001, leaving the release date in a musical purgatory
where the band has hung for the last four years.
Corporate giant Yahoo offered to sponsor a spring
tour before Weezer had even entered the studio to
record their third record. This unity between Weezer
and corporate American icon Yahoo upset many of
their fans - fans that take pride in the obscurity that
Weezer's absence has garnered.
Weezer's time away resulted in steady sales for
Pinkerton, and recently the album was certified plat-
inum, proving abscence makes the heart grow
Weezer storms into Detroit for the second time in
nine months this time at the State Theatre on
Thursday accompanied by special guests and
unsigned California quintet Ozma, and torch toting
indie-rockers The Get Up Kids. Both bands were
chosen via an online fan poll thru Weezer's official

Courtesy or vagrant Records
Members of the Get Up Kids chill on their porch with an odd-looking bald fellow.

Pinkerton still swimming
around five years later

Pinkerton, Weezer; Geffen
Released: 9.24.96
Somewhere between the Fonz
and Jonze, Weezer's cutesy
image was shed and irony rich
lyrics were left by the wayside.
Pinkerton s looser production
and autobiographical lyrics burst
at the seams with Cuomo's sing-
a-long choruses and intelligent
Instead of tongue-in-cheek
slackjaw rock, Weezer follows
their eponymous triple platinum
debut with 10 carefully penned
songs about Cuomo's reclusion
at Harvard following Weezer's
tour in 1995.
Painfully personal and still
rich with the melody and wit that

drove the band to success
Pinkerton ' songs were built
around the concept of Giacomo
Puccini's Madame Butterfly,
turning the enigmatic Cuomo
into a morally bankrupt rockstar
traveling from town to town
seducing women.
Puritanical rock and roll open-
er "Tired of Sex" displays
Cuomo's roots as a reformed
shredder with a Scorpion-esque
display of soloing. "Across the
Sea," was written around a letter
that was sent to Cuomo from an
overseas fan. Cuomo took the
letter almost verbatim and turned
it into the first verse for the song;
he is sharing royalties with the
fan. Hook-y and riff driven "El
Scorcho" is arguably the

strongest track on the record.
Gang-vocals and obscure falset-
to harmonies, driven by a double
time interlude collide in an end-
ing that oozes pop. In "Pink
Triangle" Cuomo is again shut
down, this time by a lesbian.
Rivers Cuomo has recently
recanted his feelings on
Pinkerton, saying the record was
like "waking up after a party
where you got really drunk and
spilled your guts."
Drink up boys. Drink up.

Get Up Kids
off and running
Somthing to Write Home About Get
Up Kids; Vagrant records
Released: 9.28.99
Marching the indie-flame to the
giant torch and lighting it on fire in
with their 1999 release Something to
Write Home About, the Get Up Kids
joined a major/minor label in Vagrant
and improved the quality of their
sound immensely from their
Doghouse debut LP Four Minute Mile.
Raucous octave sliding guitars and
power chords swirl together behind
beguiling lyrics and are swathed in
Matthew Pryor's blaring high-pitched
vocals. Obtaining their fans from the
emo / pop rock / punk crossover some-
where hither between Green Day and
Cheap Trick, the Get Up Kids music is

an energized blast in the face of cur-
rent stock rock.
Opening track "Holiday" causes an
involuntary twitch of humming and
foot-tapping teetering towards an
epileptic rock seizure. "Action and
Action" is a slow tear-jerking ballad.
Something to Write Home About
loosely follows a theme of losing
someone and moving on, cultural uni-
"I'm a Loner Dottie, a Rebel,"
makes the pop-aware chuckle with its
not-so obscure Pee Wee Herman ref-

Ozma come
Rock and Roll Part Three,
Ozna; Tornado Recordings
Released: 1.15.00
Their online biography
quips "You know the story,
five California kids who fell
in love with melody"and fall
they did. Nationally
unknown, and at the same
time holding fans in narrow
crooks of European coun-
tries, quasi-indie rockers
Ozma's Rock and Roll Part
Three has been out for
almost a year.
Brimming with adoles-
cent angst, and clever lyrics
these five 'kids' from

California have all taken a
collective semester off and
headed out on the road with
Weezer and the Get Up Kids
on behalf of Yahoo's
Outloud! Tour.
RRP3 is excruciatingly
catchy and wistful. Nostalgia
runs wild through Ozma's
tunes, which explicitly
describe the difficulties 0
growing up, and heartache,
as if these kids were a few
years removed from adoles-
Dynamically the band
loves the loud/soft contrasts.
"Natalie Portman," exploring
more than a feigned obses-
sion with the sexy Amidala,
crawls in with a keyboa
hum and peaks in a fury o
guitars and the helpless
Brummel lyric "There's
nothing I can do."


Prague Chamber to perform at Hill

By Jim Schiff
Daily Fine/Performing Arts Editor

It takes a special kind of orchestra to
perform without a conductor. The
Prague Chamber Orchestra is such an

j! 3 ;Prag ue
Hill Auditorium
Wednesday at 8 p.m.

ensemble, com-
prised of 36 tal-
ented musicians
who each take
part in directing
each other. On
evening, this
unique group
will join the
Beaux Arts Trio
for a spectacular
evening of popu-
lar 19th-century

While the majority of the orchestra's
repertoire draws from the classical peri-
od, with composers such as Haydn,
Mozart, and Beethoven, they have per-
formed works as far back as the High
Baroque period, and as recent as twen-
tieth-century pieces by Prokofiev and
Stravinsky. Wednesday's program
includes Rossini's "Overture to
L'Italiana in Algeri," Janacek's "Suite
for Strings," and Mendelssohn's
"Symphony No. 4 in A Major, Op.90."
The highlight of Wednesday's con-
cert, however, will probably be
Beethoven's rarely performed "Triple
Concerto in C major for Violin, Cello
and Piano, Op.56." On this piece, the
Beaux Arts Trio will perform the solo
sections on their respective instru-
ments: Menahem Pressler on piano,
Young Uck Kim on violin, and Antonio

been invited to perform in many of the
world's major music centers, such as
London, Paris, and New York.
Apart from performing on stage,
Beaux Arts Trio dedicates a substantial
amount of time to educational and cul-
tural programs in North America. They
participate in a concert series every
year at the Metropolitan Museum of
Art, the Celebrity Series in Boston, and
the Library of Congress, where they are
in residence. Pianist Pressler is a pro-
fessor at the Indiana University School
of Music. He has found that "to teO
the things you really know - to give
that to a young person is enormously
satisfying and important"
A major contributor to the Trio's
longevity is Pressler, who has been with
the group since its conception. "The
works in the trio are much designed for

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