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June 09, 2003 - Image 9

Resource type:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2003-06-09

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JUNE 9, 2003

Honey, I shrunk the Field Day Festival

By Todd Weiser
Dily Artator

NEW YORK - Saturday's Field
Day Music Festival was a success for
merely taking place. After weeks of
legal squabbles, promoters were forced
to condense the two-day superstar-
billed camping/concert extravaganza
into a one-day affair, and move it from
a grassy field in Calverton, N.Y., to
stoic Giants Stadium in East Ruther-
ford, N.J. Disappointed fans showed up
from all over the world to endure a
day's worth of rain for the likes of
Radiohead, the Beastie Boys, Beck and
more. And while the rain dampened
spirits for most of the day, Radiohead's
closing set erased all misgivings.
The fest's expected 50,000 atten-
dance was radically downsized in the
move to Jersey, and the event seemed
justifiably disorganized given the short
prep time. Failure on the part of the
state of New York and Suffolk County
to supply enough security necessitated
the move, and the crowd's displeasure
reared its head when a "Fuck Suffolk"
T-shirt drew a large cheer when shown
on the two jumbo screens.
Some of the fest's most anticipated
acts were lost in its abridgement,
including such as Sigur Ros and Inter-

pol, and most of its hip-hop contingent,
including the Roots, N.E.R.D. and the
Streets. Still, as if this was not enough,
an official came on a minute before
Beck's set was to start to announce that
Mr. Hansen "took a spill" backstage
and was hospital bound.
Worried about riots? I was. But the
rain-soaked crowd took it in stride,
instead throwing their enthusiasm on
an extended Beasties Boys set list.
Drawing most of the songs off their
1999 record Hello Nasty, and com-
pletely avoiding old-school classic
License to Ill. With the rain finally
stopping five minutes into their set, the
middle-aged rappers performed an
unscripted high-wire act. Yet, even as
the boys stopped to repair mistakes and
lost memories, they kept it ill.
Earlier performances featured all too
brief sets (Beth Orton, Spiritualized,
Liz Phair), energetic second stage per-
formances (Ours, Thursday) and the
thumping techno of Underworld that
brought life to the poncho-clad specta-
tors. A cheerfully clumsy performance
by Elliott Smith and Blur's Britpop
explosion highlighted the rest of the
day's activities. But in the end, the night
belonged to headliners Radiohead.
Throughout their two hour set,
Thom Yorke and members leaned on

The little one is called Thom.
new LP Hail to the Thief, starting with
the bassy percussion of single "There
There." Even with the album not offi-
cially being released until Tuesday, the
crowd cheered loudly as they recog-
nized each new track, forcing Yorke to
joyfully bemoan, "Everyone comes up
to me saying, 'Great record.' It's not out
yet!" The startlingly beautiful newbie
"Sail to the Moon" brought a blissful
hush over the crowd only outdone by
the violent loud-soft interchange of
"Paranoid Android." With Yorke's cries
of "Rain down, rain down / Come on
rain down on me," the early flow of
despised water received a welcome
invitation from the entranced crowd.

Dude, why'd you have to lock Ludacris in the trunk? Oh, right, the rapping.

Napster killers make explosive return

By Zach Mabee
Daily Arts Writer
John Singleton's "2 Fast 2 Furious"
has its high-octane moments, but on the
whole, the film disappointingly remains
at or below the speed limit.
Paul Walker returns in the sequel as
Brian O'Connor - this time without
his badge, which he lost for allowing
Vin Diesel's character to escape in the
first installment. After apprehending
O'Connor at a busted street race, the
police offer him an ultimatum: help us
bust corrupt inter-
national business- 2 Fast
man Carter Verone 2 Furious
(Cole Bauser) or
go to prison. At Quality16 and
O'Connor wisely Showcase
chooses the for- Universal Pictures
mer but insists
upon partnering with his childhood
friend Roman Pearce (Tyrese) to com-
plete the job.
Now, as many acute observers have
already noted, much of "2 Fast" pro-
gresses more like a "Grand Theft Auto"
scenario than like a feature film. Take,
for example, the initial test of Brian and
Roman's merits as getaway drivers:
Verone assembles a group of potential
candidates and tells them that the first
pair of drivers to recover goods from
his Ferrari gets the job. Accordingly, the
men flee on foot to their vehicles and

then race to their destination, making a
playground of the interstate, and in the
process, causing one of the candidates
to be crushed by two semis.
This chase, like the majority of those
in "2 Fast," is well-orchestrated and fre-
netic, but the premise itself makes the
entire episode seem rather foolish and
more game-like than life-like. More-
over, the screenplay by Michael Brandt
is vapid, and although the script isn't
intended to buttress the movie, the char-
acters themselves lack flair and appeal.
If action is our sole criterion,
though, and all previous criticisms are
thus moot, then "2 Fast" succeeds. The
driving stunts are not only chaotic:
they are colossal. The opening race
scene through Miami streets at speeds
in excess of 120 miles per hour obvi-
ously doesn't soothe the palate of
today's viewers; to intensify the situa-
tion, the cars jump a raised drawbridge
as though it's a skateboard ramp. And
this scene is merely a sampling of
what's to come, namely in comparison
to the concluding chase scene which
features trucks flattening police cruis-
ers and hundreds of street racers col-
lectively fleeing the law and scattering
throughout Miami.
In retrospect, maybe too much Paul
Walker or the dull screenplay makes "2
Fast" terribly mediocre; regardless, the
film's worthwhile scenes of action and
mayhem are ultimately trumped by
mistakes and shortcomings elsewhere.

By James Pfent be disappointed.
Daily Arts Writer Indeed, Metallica have completely
Music REVIEW ****I changed their approach. Bob Rock's
spare production is the most obvi-
The title says it all: St. Anger is ous alteration, and it takes some
the most aggressive Metallica album getting used to. That said, it fits the
yet, and as such it is a blessing for songs well, as do Hetfield's vocals,
their fans. At first, it's shocking to which exude more character and
hear the band play with such inten- emotion than ever before. For the
sity, after years of heavy -first time, James screams,
blues-rock experimenta- taking the already manic
tion. Then again, they've Metallica songs to a new level. But
gone through some trying St. Anger this isn't all Hetfield's
times recently, including show; St. Anger is a collabo-
James Hetfield's rehab Elektra Records rative effort, unlike the
stint, bassist Jason New- band's earlier albums, a.k.a.
stead's departure and the Napster "The Hetfield-Ulrich Experience."
debacle, not to mention endless But perhaps the most surprising
cries of "sell-out." change is the complete lack of gui-
Not surprising then is Metallica's tar solos. While the songs work
rediscovered brutality, which is any- without them, some lead playing
thing but awkward. here or there
St. Anger reminds' couldn't have hurt.
the listener just The songs them-
how much ass this selves show both
band can kick similarities and
when they want to, differences when
and how much fun compared with
it is to hear. Het- previous material.
field's lightning- Every track boasts
speed riffs and numerous tempo
Ulrich's thunderous changes and
double bass drum- quiet/loud dynam-
ming are reminis- ics, which the
cent of the old i it band has done
days, but this before (albeit not
album is by no recently), but the
means a creative step backward. Those relative lack of melody and catchy
hoping for Master of Puppets II will choruses is quite new.

All of this would add up to com-
mercial suicide, were that possible
for Metallica. Instead, it'll be one of
the most furious, inaccessible and
uncompromising albums ever to go
multi-platinum. It'll also be nearly
as controversial as the Load albums;
many will love the album, and just
as many will likely hate it. Hell,
some have already accused the band
of jumping on the nu metal band-
wagon. Nevertheless, Metallica have
made the album they wanted to
make, without taking cues from any
current bands or trends. St. Anger
isn't nu metal; it's just metal, pure
and simple.

SOFT FOR DIGGING (NR) ......................................................300, 7:00
BUNNY (NR) ...........................................................1:O, 5:00,9:00
CITY OF GHOSTS (R) ...............................................1:15, 3:40, 7:15, 9:40
L'AUBERGE ESPAGNOLE (R) ..........................................1:05, 3:35, 7:05, 9:35
THE MATRIX RELOADED (R).... .............................1:00, 4:00, 7:00, 9:45
DOWN WITH LOVE (PG-13) ..................................... 1:15, 3:15, 5:15, 7:20, 9:25
THE ITALIAN JOB (PG-13) ....................................... 1:00, 3:15, 5:30, 7:30, 9:45
THE IN-LAWS (PG-13)........................................................ 3:25, 7:30
ASSASSINATION TANGO (R) ............................................ 1:10, 5:15, 9:30
(734) 994 1000 www.madstonetheaters.com dRememba:.fllAhoza h4ho 6pm, 04dq $5.50!

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