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March 16, 2005 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2005-03-16

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0 March 16, 2005
arts. michigandaily. com

RU E9iditS Mil


__ 5

By Kat Bawden
Daily Arts Writer

Courtesy of Credit

Apparently the elevator doesn't respond well to groping

MobMus Band looks
*to find unique sound

By Chris Gaerig
Daily Arts Writer
Mobius Band's brand of electronic
pop is one that's seen immense radio
play and publicity in recent months.
With the emergence of the Postal Ser-
vice and other like groups, smaller,

similar artists are
receiving the rec-
ognition they've
craved for quite
some time. Mobi-
us Band's latest
release, the City

Mobius Band
City Vs. Country

Vs. Country EP, exhibits their abil-
ity to integrate driving guitar riffs,
soft vocals, electronic glitches and
catchy hooks.
City Vs. Country has two distinct
sounds that intertwine and separate
frequently: electronic and guitar
driven pop. There are tracks that
combine the two seamlessly and oth-
ers that keep them virtually separate.
The ability to shift between the two
without losing the group's identity is
one of the EP's greatest successes.
"Starts Off With a Bang" and "I
Had a Very Good Year" are filled
with spastic drum machines and spo-
radic computer generated sounds.
The digital glitches fill negative
space and give the songs a warm
essence. The delicate vocals com-
bined with the instrumentation to
create a cocoon of sound. Both tracks
eventually morph into a short guitar
bridge before transforming back to
their original processed sound.
Mobius Band proves that they can
work outside of a digital field and
electronic free with "Year of the

President." Nearly all of the instru-
ments on the track are organic. The
group sheds the keyboards during
the choruses, opting for controlled
guitar feedback; however, soft com-
puter generated hums can be deci-
phered in the background of the
The lyrics leave a bit more to be
desired throughout City Vs. Coun-
try. They are generally inane and
make little sense, "So sick of music
I It's not like I choose it." Where
the words fall short, the melodies
take over. The hooks are infectious,
and the croons fill the tracks with a
strange friendliness.
City Vs. Country's biggest down-
fall is its lack of experimentation.
Mobius Band doesn't offer anything
original on this release: run-of-the-
mill melodies and lackluster instru-
mentation. They prove their musical
ability and show their craftsmanship
on the EP but its not enough to get
them the recognition they are obvi-
ously striving for. Mobius Band is
too small to hit the mainstream and
not interesting enough to be wor-
shiped by the indie-music elitists.

Regina Spektor, the object of musical affection
for such kings of hipness as The Strokes, has finally
released her first full-length album, Soviet Kitsch,
in American record stores. To = =
her fans who glued themselves Regina,
to her del ightfully personal Spko
website as the only reliable Spko
source for her music; who fol- Soviet Kitsch
lowed her performances at Sire
various Manhattan caf6s; and
who found themselves wooed
and drooling from the moment she coyly appeared
onstage as the opening act for The Strokes, Kitsch is
a mouthwatering prospect.
In tune with her previous artistic outings, Kitsch
shows Spektor as an artist elusive to definition. Her
songs are piano-driven with her free-spirited mezzo-
soprano vocals - at times strong chants, childishly
trill or uninhibitedly improvising - racing across
octaves. The musical genre dangles between folk,
classical, jazz and pop - a rare balance sustained by
Spektor's energy and willingness to experiment.
In her songs, she skips among being vivacious,
silly and helpless. She's sweet enough to be perpetu-
ally awe-struck and heartbroken, but gutsy enough
to tell a man, "You're children are grown / And you
haven't made your wife moan" and "Maybe you
should just drink a lot of coffee / And never watch
the 10 o'clock news" as she does in "The Ghost of
Corporate Future."
The track "Chemo Limo" exemplifies Spektor's Just like Tori Amos. Minns the suck.
emotional and categorical versatility: The melody

Courtesy of Sire Records

begins as winding and plaintive, and her voice hops
feisty from note to note. Then, she sing-speaks with
a Spanish Harlem accent, beat boxes and loops back
to that wispy sadness. On "Ode to Divorce," she
sings, "I need your love / So won't you help a brother
out / Won't you help a brother out?" Though her
repetitive playfulness can be unnerving in the way
talkative kids can be both endearing and annoying,
she reminds listeners that music can't be taken too
seriously. Her concurrent vulnerability and free-
spiritedness create an image of Spektor as revealing

as the characters in her songs.
Spektor's music shows people uncontrived and
uninhibited. She's recorded various moments that,
in their different forms, blanket the human experi-
ence. As she sings, "Things I have loved I'm allowed
to keep," on the song "The Flowers," the listener is
cajoled into nostalgia, remembering observations,
arguments, first kisses, needs - some that may not
even be their own.
The main theory of psychiatrist Carl Jung is that
of the "collective unconscious," the reservoir of our

universal experiences as humanity. We are never
fully conscious of this basin of happenings; nonethe-
less it affects all of our actions and emotions. Regina
Spektor's songs are a manifestation of Jung's theory.
She ties strangers' stories together with seams of
fidgeting piano solos and bold vocals. She drags a
microscope across a bustling and bursting world,
letting it linger over protagonists in their moments
of confusion, irony and sillyness - experiences
too real to be helplessly lost amongst the swollen

Ensler's play 'Floating
Rhoda' staged by RC

By Andrew Klein
For the Daily

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The University will once again host a
potentially controversial play by the pro-
lific Eve Ensler, author of the intensely

debated "The
Vagina Mono-
logues," as the RC
Players prepare to
stage three perfor-
mances of "Float-
ing Rhoda and the
Glue Man" this
weekend at the
Residential Col-
lege Auditorium
in East Quad Resi-

Rhoda and
the Glue Man
Thursday through
Saturday at 8 p.m.
$3 Students
$5 non-students
At the RC Auditorium

value and a negative portrayal of males,
RC senior and Director Megan Shuchman
believes that while "Floating Rhoda" is
"honest in its portrayal" of an abusive rela-
tionship, there is "empathy for both sexes"
as the play seeks to "focus on the problems
of society that lead to such behavior."
Despite flyers that highlight the pro-
duction's sexual aspects in a lighthearted
manner, there is no denying that this ear-
lier piece of Ensler's work contains just as
much emotional weight as its more con-
frontational successor. The play features
intense displays of physical abuse coupled
with titillating scenes of sex. But Shuch-
man argued that "within these two plays,
there are two different versions of shock,"
and "Floating Rhoda" is more versatile.
She explained that this play "is more uni-
versal than 'The Vagina Monologues,' "
and that its message can "transcribe to any
group in society." She worked with the
production of "The Vagina Monologues"

RC alum Devon Dupree and LSA senior Megan Metlugh, front, rehearse a
scene with the rest of the cast of the play yesterday.

for three years and explained that while
"Rhoda is not necessarily a representation
of every woman," the lives she and rest
of the characters lead are more readily
Shuchman was more than enthused
about her cast, which includes solid vet-
erans such as LSA senior Zach Spencer
and RC senior Erin Kaplan, who both
appeared in the Rude Mechanicals' ver-

sion of Shakespeare's 'A Winter's Tale,"
and rising talents like RC sophomore
Anna Rose Kessler Moore, who shined
in this winter's RC Player's "Evening of
For those who may have missed "The
Vagina Monologues," this play is the per-
fect opportunity to re-evaluate not only
one's opinion of Ensler, but more impor-
tantly, Ensler's message.

dence Hall. Although some believe "The
Vagina Monologues" only resonates with
audiences thanks to over-the-top shock


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