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February 18, 2005 - Image 5

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2005-02-18

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Friday
February 18, 2005
arts. michigandaily.com
artspage@michigandaily.com

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Courtesy of Island

"I'm the real fifth Beatle!"

Brit-rocker Keane
wows local crowd

By Mary Catherine Finney
Daily Arts Writer

Courtesy of UMS

Members of the Soweto Gospel Choir perform together.

RAISING THEIR

VOICES

SOUTH AFRICAN ENSEMBLE COMBINES MUSIC WITH ACTIVISM

By Lynn Hasselbarth
Daily Arts Writer
While some art forms allow one to contemplate
in isolation, live musical performance compels
audiences to engage their senses. The South Afri-
can-based Soweto Gospel Choir provides such an

experience. Performing at Hill
Auditorium tonight, the Soweto
Gospel Choir exudes a vibrating
musical and spiritual pulse.
Under the musical direction
of David Mulovhedzi, the choir
brings together local talent from
the churches and communities in
and around Soweto, an apartheid
ghetto outside Johannesburg,

Soweto
Gospel Choir
Tonight at 8 p.m.
$10 students,
$10-$36 adults
At Hill Auditorium

gospel set to i live band. Keyboard instruments, bass
and electric guitars merge with the deep drone of an
enormous African drum. Handmade djembe drums
offer complicated rhythms and a range of tones that
compliment the choir's rich harmonies.
The choir draws on the diverse backgrounds of its
26 members, incorporating pieces sung in more than
eight different languages including English, Swahili,
Xhosa, Zulu and Sotho. "It is a great collaboration, a
blend of what each choir member considers 'home,' "
said Assistant musical director Lucas Deon Bok.
"We try to tell a story ... to speak of a journey,"
explained Bok. The first segment of the performance
will focus on traditional African spirituals that evoke
themes of the promised land, faith and hope. The
second section features a traditional dance that cele-
brates and welcomes the coming rain. The energized
clapping and stamping of the choir complements this
act of communal praise.
The final section gives voice to the struggles of
women in the African community. Pieces include a
traditional Zulu wedding song in which a male solo-
ist pleads, "Come with me down Paradise Road, this

way please, I'll carry your load."
Tonight's performance features music from the
choir's debut album, Voices From Heaven. Released
in 2002, Bok considers Voices to be a "miracle CD,"
produced after the choir had only been together for
a month. Three years later, the ensemble has become
an internationally recognized ensemble. Bok said that
today the choir rehearses and performs at a deeper
level, "with a more developed sense of friend-
ship."
The Soweto Gospel Choir extends this sense of
community out into the world. The choir's char-
ity foundation Vukani, which means "to arise,"
distributes funds to Soweto based AIDS orphan
outreach programs that receive no government or
private funding.
Proceeds from album sales and audience dona-
tions have been used to supply food, cooking
appliances, schooling fees and medication to hun-
dreds of children. Bok encouraged others to seek
their own meaningful path, hoping that "this per-
formance will inspire others to live their dreams
more fully and with optimism."

Energy was in the air Wednesday
night as the Michigan Theater was
swarmed with a diverse group of
music fans. From ____________
loyal teenage girls in K
Union Jack T-shirts
to still-rocking Wednesday,
thirtysomethings, Feb. 16
everyone was there At the
to seerthe headlining Michigan Theater
band, Brit-rock dar-
lings Keane.
Chicago-based group The Redwalls
opened the show. They may claim
to be from the Windy City, but they
sound like they're from Liverpool.
All four members wore sport coats,
shared mics on three-part harmonies
and their lead-guitarist sang with a
playful, Lennonesque scream. A
band that started off the evening by
insulting the audience clearly won
them back when listeners cheered as
The Redwalls walked to the lobby to
sign autographs.
After a short intermission, The
Zutons hit the stage with their
kinetic blend of rock, funk and soul.
The three guitarists and lone female
saxophonist staged a musical assault;
they never stopped moving, dancing
and shaking, eventually bringing the
audience to their feet in giddy com-
munion.
The Zutons' jaunty basslines and
driving beats on crowd favorites "Pres-

sure Point" and their closer, "You Will
You Won't" were the set's high points.
As the last chord of The Zutons'
dynamic show faded and the raging
applause of the crowd filled the hall,
it seemed unlikely that the subdued
piano-rock of Keane could sustain the
crowd's adrenaline rush.
The stage lights vanished, darkness
descended and the entire audience
went into hysterics before Keane set
foot on the stage. Bright white lights
framed the trio as they walked out to
shrieks and cheers. Singer Tom Chap-
lin danced around, bathed in a blur of
red and white light that eerily matched
his outfit, before introducing "Every-
body's Changing."
With their simple setup of percus-
sion, piano and voice, Keane's per-
formance could easily have become
tiresome and repetitive. However, their
charm captivated college-rockers and
teenyboppers alike. After testing out a
few new songs, including the memo-
rable "Hamburg Song," the band
returned to their current hit "Some-
where Only We Know" to close out
the set.
Throughout the show Chaplin was
visibly and audibly humbled by the
crowd's praise, expressing his grati-
tude over and over. Already used to
immense success in the UK, their
disbelief at receiving such a tremen-
dous reaction so far from home in
a Midwestern college town seemed
genuine. While their road to star-
dom in the States may have only
begun, Keane are most certainly on
their way..

South Africa made specifically for Blacks. Drawing
on the musical traditions of South African gospel
music, the Soweto Gospel Choir presents a dynamic
blend of a cappella folk anthems with contemporary

Latest
'Oddworld'
a solid
shooter
By Jared Newman
Daily Arts Writer
It's easy to groan at the thought of anoth-
er first-person shooter. With "Halo 2" still
spending plenty of
time in everyone's
Xbox, what could a Oddworld
game like "Oddworld Stranger's
Stranger's Wrath" Wrath
possibly deliver? Xbox
Even if it promises EA
"live ammo" - an
arsenal made up of
critters instead of bullets - and the abil-
ity to beat up foes in third-person mode,
what's to say that these features aren't just
a cheap gimmick?
As it turns out, those capabilities are
just cogs in the wheel of a solid game.
Add elements like cartoonish humor, an
interesting plot and well balanced game-
play, and "Oddworld Strangers Wrath"
is a winner. The game features the same
ugly-yet-cute artistic style as previous
"Oddworld" titles like "Abe's Oddysee,"
but takes place in a country western envi-
S

'Latin Project' delivers a
rich mix of genre to Hill

By Jeremy Davidson
Daily Arts Writer

Whereas some musicians might
take pride in labeling themselves
as performers of a specific musical
genre, the members of Jack DeJoh-
nette's Latin Project won't limit

Courtesy of EA

"All we need now is a Wal-Mart."
ronment. The main character is Stranger,
a bounty hunter with an over-the-top John
Wayne voice. Afflicted with an uniden-
tified illness, Stranger needs money, or
"moolah," for the operation and must col-
lect bounties by capturing outlaws wanted
in each town.
Although it may be tempting to use
the explosive or deadly weapons, more
"Moolah" is awarded for capturing vil-
lains alive. By knocking enemies to the
ground with either a melee attack or with
certain weapons, Stranger can suck ene-
mies up with his vacuum and then cash
them in at a bounty store in town. How-
ever, this means that players must endure
enemy fire and step out into the open
before downed enemies rise up if they
want to grab any bounties. Often, Stranger
will narrowly escape death after sucking
up a foe by using third-person mode to
dash to a hiding spot on all fours.
Fortunately, the health system is con-

ducive to this style of play. Stranger has a
normal health bar as well as a recharging
stamina bar to regain health. Though the
strategy of killing, sucking and hiding can
be repetitive, missions are short and the
boss battles are varied.
The dialogue and voice acting steal the
show. Many characters deserve praise, but
the best is the Chippunk. Part of Stranger's
live ammo, this chipmunk-like creature
rests on Stranger's crossbow and offers
high-pitched taunts like "You da man,
Smelly!" while he waits to be launched.
It's refreshing to have a game that's funny
and fun to play.
Besides an awkward control scheme,
the game's only shortcoming is its lack
of a "wow" factor. That said, it's a hard-
er game to come back to than meatier
shooters like "Halo 2." But once it's in
the Xbox, casual and hardcore gamers
alike may have trouble putting the con-
troller down.

themselves that
way.
Instead, in
just the oppo-
site fashion,
the group's
members pride
themselves in
taking their
music out-
side of a box
that other jazz

Jack
DeJohnette
Latin Project
Saturday at 8 p.m.
$10 students, $10-
$40 adults
At Hill Auditorium

sound cannot only be attributed
to DeJohnette. This project also
includes Jerome Harris on bass, Don
Byron on clarinet, Giovanni Hidalgo
on congas, Luisito Quintero on tim-
bales and bongos and Edsel Gomez
playing piano.
Harris has appeared on over 50
recordings performing both bass and
guitar; he has played instruments
from the accordion to the guitar and
plays and listens to genres from pop
to gospel to rock'n'roll. Don Byron
has also developed a reputation for
making a sound without boundar-
ies.
In addition to solid, professional
accompaniment for the Latin Proj-
ect, DeJohnette has a long and prom-
inent history in the jazz recording
industry.
He has played with jazz legends
such as John Coltrane, Miles Davis
and Herbie Hancock. He is consid-
ered in the jazz world to be one of
the most important jazz musicians
in generations.
DeJohnette has also recently
completed The Out of Towners with
Keith Sorrett and Gary Peacock as
well as Dan Byron's Ivey Divey.
Both projects were nominated for
Grammy Awards
This April, Dejohnette will
release two new albums after start-
ing to produce on his own label,
Golden Beams.

groups may fall inside of.
DeJohnette's newest group proj-
ect blends varied aspects from
many different musical genres;
consequently, this combination of
musicians produces its own unique
musical sound.
DeJohnette grew up listening to
records and the radio and has attrib-
uted his eclectic style to his reluc-
tance to categorize music.
"It was all music, and it was all
fascinating," DeJohnette said in a
written release.
However, the group's eclectic

DeJohnette combines rock, pop and
other genres in his brand of jazz.
The first is a duo project, called
Music from the Hearts of the Masters,
which features accompaniment by Afri-
can kora master Foday Musa Suso.
His second project will be a duo
with Don Alias. This will be the
first album on which the two have
recorded together.
Tomorrow's performance will be
the last of eight along the debut tour
of the Jack Dejohnette Latin Project.
The tour began on Jan. 26 in Burl-
ington, Vt. and will be making its
way to Hill Auditorium after play-
ing at Orchestra Hall in his home-
town of Chicago. Hopefully,
DeJohnette will save the best per-
formance for his last.

J7vII 1 / VI I

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