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September 08, 2004 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 2004-09-08

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12 - The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, September 8, 2004

ARTS

THE HOTTEST PICKS IN ENTERTAINMENT
FROM A DAILY ARTS WRITER
"Futurama" Season Four DVD - You can own these now-classic
cartoons on DVD. Fry, Bender and Leela continue their antics in the
fourth season, which was recently released. The show is something
of a cult classic, but has a large popular following as well. With
drunken robots and limboing bureaucrats, why would you miss out
on this set?

ONE SMALL
VOICE
BjORK SINGS IT ALL
ON NEW ALBUM
By Alex Wolsky

D'aily zArts iEditor

I

"The Dark Tower VII: The Dark Tower" - The finale to a book
series that Stephen King began more than 30 years ago; this is a bit-
tersweet moment for fans of the legendary gunslinger and his ka-tet.
The book hits store shelves on Sept. 21, and promises some answers
after the last cliffhanger ending in "The Song of Susannah." The
quest for the tower has taken the gunslingers and readers through
countless adventures. How will King end his prized fantasy series?
Will they reach the tower in time to save the universe?

Bjdrk was born on the edge of the world. Volca-
noes, ice storms and darkness are all elementary
realities throughout the land. Each year, a hand-
ful of tourists will fly into Reykjavik, Iceland,
rent a vehicle with four-wheel-drive and drive
across the mainland of Iceland, which is com-
pletely covered in glaciers, and drown in a flash
flood or some other catastrophe. To those native

"Garden State" - If you were impressed with Zach Braff's performance
on "Scrubs," you will be blown away by his work in "Garden State." This
summer's introspective romance was written, directed and primarily acted
by Braff. It will be interesting to see what is next for this young, talented and
cute rising star.

to the area, this is as common
as the sunlight - it's a reality
that comes with living at the
point of no return. Icelanders
celebrate living on the edge
to uncharacteristic extremes:
They drink too much and

Bjork
Meddila
Elektra

Ken Jennings - A: He is the most Suc-
cessful contestant in "Jeopardy" his-
tory. Come on, if you do not know who
this man is, you must have been living
in a box for the last three months! This
"Jeopardy" tyrant has won more than
a million dollars and there no end in
sight. After a seven-week hiatus Jen-
nings made a triumphant return,
proving to audiences every-
where that Trebek still
has it, despite Regis
and his "Millionaire"
whoring.

work too hard. They enjoy whale blubber and
celebrate the days of summer like children who
know they'll live forever.
Bjork is the only Icelandic person many people
know. She is her country: an eccentric, unwaver-
ing individual who puts everything she has into
every project. To her, music is a divine dance -
an existential platform in which she becomes an
extraordinary machine that looks inward to proj-
ect out her own transposed vision of her home-
land. For four solo albums, she's tip-toed the line
between playful, romping pop and the avant-garde
like a glass doll, skipping only to the rhythm of
her own heartbeat. Vespertine and Homogenic,
her two most adventurous albums preceding this
year's stunning Medulla, found Bjork reced-
ing into humanity's noise, flirting with the first
undulations of life. Medulla finds her completely
encompassed within it.
With help from a wide range of beatboxers
(Rahzel of the Roots, Japanese phenom Dokaka),
vocalists, songwriters and Inuit choirs, Bjork
has created an album entirely constructed by the
human voice. From the Gregorian chant-based
"V6kur6" and the a cappella "Show Me Forgive-
ness," to the almost cloying chorus of "Who Is
It?" Medalla comes equipped with a vast array of
tracks that tread disparate emotions and dynam-
ics, keeping the album far from wearing thin.
With Medulla, Bjork and her collaborator's have
effectively challenged the preconceived notion of
electronic music. The electronic manipulation
of her voice allows Bjork, beatboxer Rahzel and
throat-vocalist Mike Patton to reach frequen-
cies outside the human range. On the warbled,
"Where is the Line?" Bjork's gentle soprano hov-
ers above Patton's growl and Rahzel's machine-

gun beat. The pin-point
production and edit-
ing by Mark Bell,
Matmos and Mark
Stent holds together
an environment in
which many differ-
ent voices combi
and use each r
to create rfet
whole Through-
out the album, Bell
uses Patton's gro
to accentuate.
own vocal avl ey. He
crafts i ation where
the multiple voices push
and pull on one another,
making the whole stronger.
Not all songs are exactly as
musical as "Where is the Line?"
Some, like "Show Me Forgiveness'
and "V6kur6," are more traditional a
cappella works, with Bulgarian Women's Choir
harmonies fleshing out Bjrk's solo voice. Oth-
ers, like "Desired Constellation," feature digital
minimalism extending and enhancing the vocals.
Then there are songs like "Triumph of the Heart"
that border on hip-hop terrain by putting the
beatbox front and center.
The most impressive aspect, however, is that
Bjork uses electronics and vocals to create pop
music. The work has beats, melodies, hooks,
choruses and all the other things we associate
with pop, but here all the beats and melodies are
voices. Some of the voiced beats are recognizable
as beatbox Dokaka's pops and tongue-twisting
glugs; other beats and melodies are entirely the
product of sampling and effects processing.
What brings everything together is Bj6rk's Ice-
landic aesthetic. There's something guttural, pri-
mal about the human voice, especially when it's
doing something other than singing. The grunts,
chirps, hums, whistles and moans all speak to
the primal power of sound that has been a part of
human history since the very beginning.
Bjork somehow connects the dots on Meddlla,
blending her most surrealistic concepts with her
pop leanings and in effect, she simultaneously
makes one of the most challenging records in
years and the most accessible. While Med/lla
may appear to be a conceptual stunt, or a gim-
mick that finds one of modern music's most inno-
vative vocalists going too far, the end result is a
gorgeous extension of Bjork's ideal: mixing the
earthy with the ethereal.

"The Daily Show's"
election coverage
- With the bub-
bly personality of the
presidential candidates
this year, "The Daily
Show" and Jon Stewart
should be required view-
ing before you make your
decision at the polls this
November. Stewart's biting
commentary adds interest to
rather dull candidates, and the
show often proves a necessary
counterpoint to slanted political
games.

If you see the ring, you die.

Courtesy o Comedy Central

Young Buck hits the target in his debut

By Evan Mcarvey
Daily Arts Writer

Straight Outta Ca$hville is ripe
with a gasping and filthy personal-
ity befitting Buck and his Southern,
mush-mouth drawl. The plethora of
samples, from Nancy Sinatra on "Bang

Why is it that the littlest brother
always seems to have the most fun?
Since we last left the G-Unit family,
Lloyd Banks has been shouldering the
burden of being 50 Cent's lord-in-wait-
ing by tossing every roughneck instru-
mental and world-beater verse into his
debut, The Hunger For More. Banks
did a fine job, but he's still attempts to
catch up to Get Rich or Die Tryin' and
its six million sold.
Meanwhile, Young Buck slides in
like Dennis the Menace (albeit with
a mouth full of diamonds), and damn
near manages to steal the show from
everybody.

Bang" to Eastern
European operatic
vocals on "Thou
Shall Not" are
tailored to Buck's
verses. It's all a
nice, boisterous
spread of criminal

Young Buck
Straight Outta
Ca$hYlle
Interscope

rap. It also might be the most dramatic
album in praise of robbery and drug
dealing since early rap pioneers The
Ghetto Boys.
The lead single "Let Me In" has a
singable hook, "I know you gonna let
me shine and get mine/ I know you
gonna let me in with this nine," and

Be all you can be... In the army.
the soon-to-be follow-up single has
Young Buck as the most dangerous

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SPEND A SEMESTER
OVERSEAS

(and stay

in the U.S.)

soldier of crunk on the Lil' Jon vehi-
cle, "Shorty Wanna Ride."
Parties rage on and Young Buck
keeps stealing other people's weed,
but at some point you get worried.
Ca$hville is so attuned to Young
Buck's strengths and drawbacks as
an MC that there's no path ahead for
future releases. Much like they way
the producers of Lloyd Banks took
his natural way of spinning lengthy
narratives and crammed it into the
radio-ready 16 bar format, Ca$hville
is so focused that Young Buck looks
quite directionless at the disc's close.
Sure it's custom tailored, but the G-
Unit production/hype dreadnaught
may have cut the clothes too tight.
Younger brothers need room to grow,
remember?
Daily Arts
Mass Meeting
Thurs. 7 p.m.

"

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Learn in the vibrant, multi-cultural community of Honolulu. Enjoy a5
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language and customs. It all adds up to a semester you'll never forget.

:( ! 1 VM

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