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January 29, 2003 - Image 7

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ARTS

The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, January 29, 2003 - 7

----I

HATE
THE DELGADOS
MANTRA
By Andrew Jovanowski
For the Daily

While their 1997 debut, Domes-
tiques, found the Delgados sound-
ing like the Pixies, each album
since has been a gradual shift away
from soft-loud/stop-start indie
rock to this intelligent pop master-
piece. Hate fully realizes the Del-
gados' potential adumbrated in
2000's Mercury Music Prize-nomi-
nated The Great Eastern. The band
sounds less like the Pixies and
more like the lovechild of post-
rockers Mogwai and Sigur R6s or
Vonnegut if he were a bubblegum
pop band lyricist. They make
black-humored self-hatred stylish,
fun and thought provoking.
With songs
"C h i 1 d ~
Killers" and
"The Drown-
ing Years,"
one might
expect Hate
to be an exer-
cise in hatred
and depres-
despite its
gloomy sub-
ject matter,
the overall
feel of the
album is
almost uplifting, albeit disquiet-
ingly. Much like the Kinks'
Muswell Hillbillies, Hate com-
bines satire with great musical tal-
ent to present the troubled nature
of our everyday world. The band
succeeds in mollifying lugubrious
songs with orchestral sweeps and
enough infectious choruses and
hooks to get them stuck in your
head - but all without diluting
their meaning.
Hate sweeps gracefully from
lullaby voices and beautiful
orchestration to cacophonous dis-
tortions and back again. On "If
This Is a Plan" and "Favours"
especially, the harmony of these
disparate elements effectively
highlights the simultaneous pleas-
ure invoked by the perfect unity of

rock and classical instruments and
pain and self-loathing conjured up
by the scintillating lyrics.
The production of Dave Frid-
mann (The Flaming Lips, Mog-
wai) may seem, at times, a bit
heavy-handed or over-orchestrat-
ed. It is almost as if he tried too
hard to fit the Delgados into his
production scheme and thereby
stifled the band's songwriting.
But, as rumor has it, the band
brought an cssentially complete
album to Fridmann, who just pro-
vided an outside ear and a little
touch-up work.
Regardless, songwriting has
always been a strength of the Del-
gados. Alun Woodward's slightly
coarse voice sometimes seems out
of place in the majesty of the
music, yet he can still write amus-
ing, frightening songs. His "All
You Need Is Hate" perverts "All
You Need Is
Love" into
three minutes
of efferves-
cently mor-
dant pop
goodness.
Whereas
Woodward's
voice is wry
and rough,
co-vocalist
Emma Pol-
lock's is
more poetic
and melliflu-
ous, but can
be equally
sardonic. "Woke from Dreaming"
is delectable melancholic poesy,
gracefully adorned with choir,
subdued strings and piano.
An album of contradictions,
Hate is meant to provoke thought.
Even though the songs are deliv-
ered poppily enough to get stuck
in your head, their dark social
commentary will give you some-
thing to think about long after the
album has ended. The Delgados
almost make the perfect pop
record: Despite some arguable
over production, Hate is virtually
destitute of any trace of manufac-
ture and fun to listen to, yet full of
meaningful songs whose value
appreciates with each listen.
RATING: * * * *

SHORT TAKES
CROOKED FINGERS
RED DiIL DAWN
MERG~ E oRDs
Eric Bachmann's throaty,
infectious vocals and archaic
guitar work with mid-90s indie
icons Archers of Loaf has gone
mostly overlooked since the
band broke up, but his post-
Archers solo project, Crooked
Fingers, has garnered a fair
amount of praise. Bachmann
now employs mostly acoustic
instruments, layering his alco-
holic folk tunes with plucked
guitars, violins and banjos. Red
Devil Dawn remedies the homo-.
geneous tempos and arrange-
ments that plagued his previous
release. The arrival of horns and
nandolins spices up the mix,
and Bachmann turns in his best
lyrical performance yet, all sung
through a Waits-ian, early-AM
murmur. Slum-folk. ***
-Andrew M Gaerig

By Sarah Peterson
Daily Arts Writer

When people think of art, they typi-
cally think of paint on canvas, or
sculptured stone; and similarly, when
people think of technology, they think
of impersonal machines. Both genres
have a strict stereotype surrounding
them. Entity, the Ann Arbor Computer
Artist coalition, howev-

itself to the conference's incredible
success. Over the years, immedia has
attracted speakers and artists from
over 30 different countries. Also, the
event has gained support from such
digital media companies as SGI,
Apple Computers and NIQ.
Trying to picture what technologi-
cal art consists of might be slightly
tough, but looking at groups that have

er, has a completely dif- M n =

Arts, technology unite in new exhibition

*ferent view.
This Friday, the 8th IMMED
annual conference and A
exhibition of digital and At the M
electronic art, otherwise Opens Frid
known as immedia2003, 31. Run
will open at the MediaFr
Union. The conference En
will highlight the blend-
ing of art and technology. It will pres-
ent "the sense of the power of the
relationship between human beings
and the electronic world, proving time
and time again that the line drawn
between technology and art is increas-
ingly blurred."
Immedia2003 is a completely stu-
dent-run event. This fact only lends

IA2003
edia Union
day, January
ns through
uary 8.
ntity

come to this event
before might shed some
light. For instance, last
year one of the featured
artists was a group by
the name of Fortune
Cookie Dreams. This
group adapted Frank
Zappa's classic album
Joe's Garage into a

with performances, there were many
exhibits that embodied the beautiful
mix between art and technology that
is immedia.
This year highlights of the event
include the Midwest Product perform-
ance, the Kit Clayton lecture and
installations and electronic music. In
the words of Jean Tomaro, curator of
the event, "immedia is evocative and
interactive, an art exhibition that the
viewer can actually participate in.
There's something for everyone."
This year, the group is expecting
around 1,500 people for opening
night, which is an increase over last
year's attendance. As Tomaro makes
sure to point out, the show would
never have come together, though, if
not for the hard work of a certain
group of dedicated students.
Friday promises to be a unique mar-
riage between art and circuitry. In one
place, students, and local and world
artists will get together to showcase
their creativity. Tomaro looks forward,
saying, "Opening night will be a
reflection of the outstanding art show-
cased in the exhibition; intelligent,
exciting and tons of fun."

media melt style that
combined modern dance, video, ani-
mation and theatre to create a new and
innovative performance. Golan Levin,
a digital artist/performer, composed
and presented the Dialtones Telesym-
phony, which was a concert made up
completely of the sounds of the chore-
ographed ringing of the audience

members' cell phones.

Also, along

NBC movie portrays other side of 'War'

By Douglas Wernert
Daily Arts Writer
War is hell. There's just no other phrase for it. In
Uzbekistan, where civil war has broken out and one
side has al-Qaida backing them, the situation can get
worse. "War Stories," an NBC movie event, follows
around four journalists in their search for the "big
story," and the subsequent events shed
new light into the atmosphere of a
country in conflict and the horrors that

Lombard) is a fine secondary character who will do
anything to get an exclusive interview or a lead story.
A trip to a refugee camp reveals the hopeless-
ness and despair of the people forced to live in a
war-torn country. When the camp is unintentional-
ly blown up by U.S. troops the next day, Ben and
Nora find themselves with a breaking story. Pho-
tographs Nora took show the possibility of tanks

are just a part of life for anyone sur-
rounded by war.
The story revolves around Ben and
Nora, a newly formed journalist-pho-
tographer team who are sent from their
respective newspapers to find out more
about the militant Islamic Movement of
Uzbekistan. This group, with the supportt

around the camp, which suggest that
the IMU used the refugees as a
human shield. The resulting conse-
quences for Ben and Nora include
questioning, kidnapping and the ter-
rible aftermath of an ambush. The
duo show the nerves of steel required
to even step foot in a warzone, let
alone stand in the line of fire.

courtesy of NBC

WAR STORIES
Tonight at 8 p.m.
NBC

Faster, faster, must go faster.

of al-Qaida,

is trying to overthrow the government with the claim
of government oppression. Ben (Jeff Goldblum) is a
fearless, experienced, hard-working writer who is fully
aware of the task at hand. Nora (Lake Bell) is a nerv-
ous photographer who wants to learn why al-Qaida
took the life of her sister on Sept. 11. The other jour-
nalists in the area all vie for the same stories and enjoy
the companionship of one another. Gayle (Louise

The movie is extremely well-done.
At the beginning, a tremendous collage of images
of our times sets the tone and provides a nice lead-
in for the following drama. Goldblum and Bell gen-
erate genuine interest with quality performances
and reactions. The script, with references to the
chaos of Sept. 11 is thought-provoking and smooth.
The plot does take an improbable and over-drama-
tized turn near the end, but the raw elements of the
show and the emotion one takes from this more

than make up for it.
"War Stories" stares its topic right in the face,
and presents the cold, brutal, sometimes extreme
truth. Both sides of the conflict are examined, and
both are represented well. It will keep you on your
toes and occasionally shock you, but you will have
a more complete awareness of our nation's current
global crisis, and a look at "the other side" as well.
The key phrase of this movie, repeated several
times, is "There is no such thing as truth. That's
why they call them stories." Real or not, "War Sto-
ries" deserves a look. That's the truth;

the michigan daily

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