Los Angeles' Extra Fancy
may be the nation's most
famous unsigned band.
live shows and a deafening
street buzz have earned the
band extensive media cov-
erage -typicallythe sort
of hype reserved for a
"Everything issort of
happening the opposite way
from how it normally does,"
says bassistDA. Foster; The
band -which also includes
vocalist Brian Grillo, gui-
tarist Michael Hateley and
drummer DerekO'Brien -
has been playing in the LA.
area for nearly three years.
With great hype comes
great headaches, though.
The band is often pegged as
"homocore," a media tag
Grillothe only gay member,
says he could do without.
"[Our music] is not
'homocore,"' Grillo says,
"because there are three
straight guys playing along.
debut, incorporates the heav-
ierend of punkindustrial
mented by Grillo's husky
vocals and candid lyrics.
"When I first started this
band, I was at a point in my
life where I really needed to
startlooking at myself and
getting inside my head,"
Grillo says. "It's very liber-
ating to expose every little
detail about myself in front
of a bunch of people. The
col thing about this punk
movement coming back is
that people really seem
open to new things."
For more info, e-mail
the band at
Rob Hooper, L. of Southern
***** race car
I **** hat
k Urge Overkill
Exit The Dragon
I've figured it out.
See, Urge Overkill is less
a rock band than a per-
petual meditation on
the state of rock band-
dom. They've cultivated
image of swank that is
so breathtakingly cool it
threatens to take over
not just the band's music - but the entire planet.
Coolness has its cost, however, and in the case of
Urge, it means you can never dissociate the music
from the image. Which isn't a problem if you're in
the mood to just feel hip and be rocked, you know,
like Cheap Trick rocked. It's in the quieter
moments, like Exit's delicate "View of the Rain,"
that the coolness becomes a problem. Because in
your heart, you want to sing along with a line like
"Take a walk outside yourself/Get to know the per-
son behind the face/Is it someone you can really
love?" But you're afraid the boys in Urge would
laugh and call yoc a sissy.
Musically, rhe band continues to appropriate the
best rock riffs of the past 20 years, but I don't think
that's even a crime anymore. Urge is the best there
is at what they do - making dashing, disposable
rock history. And that's a compliment.
Spirit of '73:
the album celebrates the disco decade musically and
politically (1973 was the year of the Roe v. Wade
decision). Highlights include Joan Jett and Rock for
Choice founders L7 covering the Runaways' "Cher-
ry Bomb" and Eve's Plumb's faithful version of "If I
Can't Have You."
What's on the record is fine - it's what's not on
the record that's a bit disappointing. Where are the
big hitters? Sineid O'Conner, Salt-n-Pepa, The
Breeders, The B-52s and MC Lyte - all staunch
supporters of women's rights - were reportedly con-
tacted for the project. Sure, logistics can be tough on
a compilation, but jeez - where'd everybody got
So here's Hurricane
- a guy who's been
on the scene since Def
Jam's heyday in the
mid-'80s, who's DJ'd
for hip-hop innovators
the Beastie Boys for
nearly a decade - and
all he can come up
with is 13 tracks about
how fly he is. Mmm. Refreshing.
He's not very convincing, either. On tracks like
"Pass Me The Gun" and "Feel The Blast," Hurri-
cane posits himself as another gat-totin' player,
which isn't all that interesting, even if you do
believe him. And guest raps by Beastie Ad Rock and
Cypress Hill's Sen Dog only highlight Hurricane's
shortcomings on the mike.
To his credit, 'Cane raises the political stakes on
"Can We Get Along," and the maelstrom produc-
tion on "Where's My Niggas At?" could rival some
of the Bomb Squad's best work.
1. Yo La Tango, Electr-0-Pura, Matador
2. Fugazi, Red Medicine, Discord
3. Bjork, Post, Elektra
4. Foo Fighters, Foo Fighters, Capitol
5. Thurston Moore, Psychic Hearts, DGC
6. The Muffs, Blonder and Blonder, Reprise
7. Alanis Morissette, Jagged Little Pill, Maverick
8. Primus, Tales From the Punchbowl, Interscope
9. Matthew Sweet, 100% Fun, Zoo
10. Buffalo Tom, Sleepy Eyed, Elektra
Chart based solely on college radio airplay. Contributing
radio stations: KRNU, U. of Nebraska; KTRU, Rice U.,
Texas; KUCB, U. of Colorado, Boulder; KWVA, U. of
Oregon; WCBN, U. of Michigan; WFAL, Bowling Green
State U., Ohio; wUTK, U. of Tennessee, Knoxville;
WVUT, Virginia Tech; WWVU, west Virginia U.
The U. Radio Chart is sponsored by
Chunky, Soup should nevertheless keep Blind Melon
from the pit of discarded MTV bands. For now.
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Soundtracks are usu-
ally a dodgy investment.
Many times, the tracks
are tirowaways, filler or
siigs (Remember "Bat-
daice"?). Now, Clueles
the movie nay or may
not suck, but the sound-
track producers have
pulled together an immensely appealing collection.
In the standout single, Kim Wilde's '80s anthem
"Kids In America" gets a punked-out makeover by
the Muffs (why didn't someone think of this
before?). Otherwise, listen for Luscious Jackson's
disco inferno "Here," still groovy despite a too-busy
dance remix, and Coolio's gangsta-pop "Rollin'
With My Homies." Other strong contributions
come from newcomers Supergrass ("Alright"),
Husker-Du-esque punkers Smoking Popes ("Need
You Around") and the ever-perky Jill Sobule
("Supermodel"). This CD will make you feel
young, hip and beautiful all over again.
More reviews, more releases, plus sound bytes at
ROck for Choice
Various Artists A good example of a modern music biz phenom-
s tenon, Blind Melon became a Huge Rock Band
* ** when MTV picked up the "No Rain" video off
It took three years to their 1992 eponymous debut album. Now the band
get this record made, as has to convince us once again that their resourceful
skittish major labels, "blend of southern rock and trippy stylistic switch-
freaked by the Ice-T/ ups is worthwhile.
Warner fiasco, refused It is, in a way. The band has a knack for tenacious
ares with the poitics ..hooks, and although there's nothing as addictive as "No
of a pro-choice compila- Rain" on Soup, there are enough interesting moments
tion. So sisters did it for to keep your head ringing. Weirdness abounds -
themselves. gothic cellos ("Car Seat"), New Orleans horns
Featuring "girl bands ("Lemonade") and even a kazoo solo ("Skinned"). But
of the '90's doing covers of girl singers of the '70s," it all wears thin after a few listens. More brothy than
Anotha Day Anotha Balna
Blame Dr. Dre. All guns-and-ganja
hip-hop sounds essentially the same
these days - horror flick synth lines
over thick bass grooves. Ah, well. At
least Houston's South Circle throw ina
little southern funk and the sophisticat-
ed rhyme styles of rappers Mr. Mike and
Incidental Music 1991-95
Chronicling four years of b-sides,
split singles, EPs and compilation
tracks, Incidental Music 1991-95 is a
great way to get acquainted with this
most excellent band. For the initiated,
it's a great way to get the rarities
without spending a fortune on out-of-
trance music depended on metronomic
drumming and inventive guitar sounds
(think Velvet Underground). Luna's Dean
Wareham (formerly of Galaxie 500) has
this routine down pat, and his lovely lyri-
cal landscapes make Penthousefeel like
a slow barbiturate dream.
As their radio hit "Black Metallic" evi-
denced, Catherine Wheel can do wonders
with guitar dynamics. In fact, the tempta-
tion issto call the guitars on this CD "majes-
tic," but then you sound like a publicity per-
son. Oh, whatthe hell - they're majestic.
Check Rob Dickinson's duet with Belly's
Tanya Donnelly, "Judy Staring at the Sun."
The Wizard of Oz
Original Motion Picture
Divvied up into a Good Witch CD and
a Bad Witch CD, this collection has it all
- the songs, the score, outtakes, alter-
nate takes, extended versions and even
rehearsal demos. Plus a 48-page booklet
with photos, storyboards and production
The Presidents of the
United States of
The Presidents of the
United States of America
These wiseacres have taken up
enough space with their damn name, so
here's the quick skinny: In the
Weezer/Pavement vein, only more
punky, less ambitious and a lot funnier.
Features "We're Not Gonna Make It"
("'Cuz there's a million better
bands/With a million better songs.").
34 U. Magazinse August/September 1995