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June 02, 2003 - Image 34

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Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2003-06-02

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22 - The Michigan Daily - Orientation Edition 2003

ARTS

AQUATIC RESCUE SQUAD
PIXA'S LATEST ANOTHER DIGITAL MASTERPIECE

BLUR
THINK TANK
PARLOPHONEViRGN REcORDS ,
Blur's self-titled 1997 release was
best known for its jock-rock sing-along
"Song 2," but discerning fans who stuck
around for the rest of the album were
treated to a wonderful makeover.
Abandoning the shameless Britpop
they had rolled into town on, Blur recre-
ated themselves as an art-rock ensemble,
and 1999's 13 furthered the transforma-
tion. The recent departure of Graham
Coxon, one of the planet's criminally
unrecognized guitarists, threatened to
stall the creative momentum, but amaz-
ingly enough, Think Tank is a complete-
ly realized and unique set of tunes high-
lighting frontman Damon Albarn's
ongoing flirtations with dance beats (see
"Girls and Boys" and Gorillaz).
The horn skronk of the opener,
"Ambulance," and the low-key soul of
"Caravan"prove the band is still capable
of sonic experimentation, while the '
vague remnants of Eastern melodies and
other world music on "Out of Time" and
"Jets" provide just enough sonic varia-
tion to keep things from getting stale.
While these are certainly triumphs,
it's the killer melodies on "On the
Way to the Club" and "Sweet Song"
that truly define the album. Blur's
third straight album of gutsy, intelli-
gent songeraft is easily their best, and
it's high-time for people to take
notice. There are few bands with the
talent, ambition and confidence to
produce such consistently successful
reinvention. ****
-Andrew M. Gaerig

ELECTRIC Six, FIRt; peer the rest of this year.
BEGGARS XL RECORDS With song titles like "Naked Pictures (Of Your
Mother)," "Electric Demons in Love" and the subversive-
taSly catchy surf guitar driven "Gay Bar,"
RFormally known as the not to mention their ultra-serious,
CAN STILL TAKE YOU OUT, Wildbunch, Detroit's own dirty agely over-the-top approach, it would
RESPECT TgE KINGS. disco-rock heroes, Electric Six final be all too easy to dismiss the Six as a
ly get around to releasing their one trick novelty act. And while you
debut, aptly called Fire. This past can't help thinking of Tenacious D or
winter the local quintet caused rip- Andrew W.K. while Fire is spinning,
pnlies of joy through Britain and the the band's white boy funk antics are
continent when their single "Danger! ' udeniably seductive.
High Voltage" surprised everybody a Instead of killing the joys of Electric
foutside of Michigan by violently tak- Six with postmodern debates about
ing the charts hostage with its relent- whether to take these guys seriously,
lessly sleazy beat and '80s cheese lts just shake our rumps while mar-
-sax solo. veling that a single act has miraculous-
That track, with its classic open-i ly reconciled the tripolar opposites of
7ing lines "Fire in the disco!/ Fire in "'C0s music - disco, arena rock and
057 73 S9 the Taco Bell" and obligatory guest punk. Not an easy or dismissible
vocals by a certain Mr. Jack White, forms the centerpiece achievement by any means.
of Fire, a storming party record that is unlikely to find a - Scott Serilla
VOTED BEST NEW RESTAURANT
2O BEST THAI RESTAURANT
y -Current Magazine

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