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September 25, 1995 - Image 8

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-09-25

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SA - The Michigan Daily - Monday, September 25, 1995

By Ted Watts
Daily Arts Writer
What do you call
that features ex-
Soundgarden and S
musically remainsr
sevenths? A Sea
Mondo cool drown
Truly, considering
such a group?
Having existed f
Truly has just rece
first full album, "
Kid Coma." On
about the reason
between concepti
"(The Seattle C
drove us to a co
explained Trulys
ist Robert Roth."
with what happe
years ago with N
the Pearl Jam thi
flying up and Seat
It's a nice place b
in '92 it was over
music industry t
they were the sam
pursuing bands i
late '80s, and it w
ing. We got offere
back then from
and we told them
was obvious thatt
stand us and theyv
in on Soundgarden
Pearl Jam, Nirvan
were looking for ac
us decide to write
Now that that's died

interesting story
comfortable making music."
an almost surf band The band had to extend before the
members of both Seattle craze to be turned off by it.
creamingTrees that Roth expounded: "I was in a band
in the area of minor with my brother and my best friend
ttle super group? from ninth grade, which was around
n rock? How about 1980. And we were in Olympia
that's the name of where there was nowhere to play,
nothing to do. It was a small town
for about six years, where you could have a band out of.
:ntly released their We moved to Seattle at the begin-
Fast Stories From ning of '87, all got jobs, had our
e has to wonder lives. By around '88 we were the
for such a delay Storybook Krooks. Sub Pop was in-
on and actualiza- terested, we were headlining Se-
attle clubs on weekends, had a good
raze) pretty much buzz on us. But then we broke up,
)ntrary position," right as record companies were
singer and guitar- starting to check us out. We'd basi-
"I'm really happy cally known each other and had been
ned three or four together too long."
qirvana. But then But then came Truly. "I started
ng and then MTV playing with Mark (Pickerel, drum-
te really changed. mer) in late '89 when he was still in
ut all of a sudden Screaming Trees. A friend of mine,
run with all these Kelly Canary was singer in the band
ype people. And Dickless, now she's in Teen An-
e people who were gels. Mark's girlfriend at the time
n spandex in the was bass player in Dickless and
vas really disgust- Kelly said that Mark was looking
ed a huge contract for other stuff to do and so I called
Atlantic Records him up to get together and play. I'd
to fuck off cuz it just written "The Color is Magic"
they didn't under- and he said 'We should record this
were trying to cash for a Sub Pop single.' Great. So in
, Screaming Trees, summer '90 we did a recording ses-
a, whatever. They sion before Hiro (Yamamoto, bass-
clone band. It made ist) was in the band. A week before
12-minute songs. the session Mark quit the 'Trees.
ddown, we're more Then we played our first show, with

Symphony S
By Emily Lambert
Daily Fine Arts Editor
Philharmonia fanatics must love Ann
Arbor. Residents can catch performances
by four University orchestras, a local
youth orchestra and any number ofneigh-
boring university and community en-
sembles. On top of that, the Detroit Sym-
phony is only a short distance away and
the University Musical Society brings
some of the world's best orchestras to our
doorstep year after year. With this abun-
dance of symphonies, it is amazing that
the city is able to support its own profes-
sional orchestra, comprised of residents
and talented University students. That
this ensemble, the Ann Arbor Symphony,
is a good one should make Ann Arborites
all the more proud.
The Ann Arbor Symphony
Orchestra's sixty seventh season opened
Saturday night with a flourish. Tal-
ented conductor Samuel Wong and his
musicians began the evening with an
animated performance of Berlioz's
overture to "La Corsaire," displaying
fine technique and inspired playing.
Summer was good to this ensemble,
whose sound has improved and richened
since its last performance.
The orchestra was joined by the ac-
claimed pianist, Norman Krieger, for
Tchaikovsky's "Concerto No. 1 in B
flat minor." The long opening move-
ment ended with such excitement and
fanfare that most of the audience, in-
cluding this shame-faced reviewer,
committed the cardinal sin of clapping
between movements. The pianist didn't
hold a grudge, though, and played the
gorgeous second movement with in-

ails high
credible sensitivity. Krieger nailed the
third movement's powerful cadenzaand
the warm reception he received at the
.concerto's end was well deserved.
"La Mer: Three Symphonic
Sketches," by Debussy, comprised the
program's second half. "La Mer," pos-
sibly Debussy's most famous impres-
sionistic work, was premiered in 1905
with a miserable, controversial perfor-

I I- -



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the Jesus Lizard, around October '90,
then decided we were going to be a
band. But we needed a real bass player.
Mark knew Hiro from Screaming Trees
and Soundgarden touring together, and
also Mark helped Soundgarden get
signed to SST when they released
"Ultramega OK." Hiro hadn't even re-
ally touched his bass since he quit
Soundgarden, which had been about a
year by that point, maybe a year and a
half. He likedour music and said 'Yeah,
From thatpoint, the band moved fairly
slowly. "When we put out our first EP
on Sub Pop, before it even came out,
Mark Moved to Ellensberg, opened up
a record store, and Hiro moved to
Bellingham, Washington and started
going to school, got a scholarship and
then got his master's degree (in physi-
cal chemistry). So the band has been
whenever we feel like doing it kind of
thing. But now with touring this record,
it's a full time thing for all of us."
But there were delays with the al-
bum, as well. "It was actually going to
come out a lot earlier, but then we were
part of Revolution, which is no longer
part of Capitol. We were originally part
of a boutique label called Revolution,
which was us and Big Chief. Anyway,
the people who own Revolution de-

cided to leave Capitol,and now they're
over at Elektra. They wanted to take
both bands with them, but Capitol
wouldn't let them take us. But when
we were on their label, we finished the
record. They said 'we want to release
this thing five months from now.'
Great. Ifyou're going to do that, we're
going to write some new songs, cuz
we want to be updated, we don't want
to go on tour on songs that are two
years old for a whole year, and then
they'll be three years old by the time
that's done. Basically we didn't just
go in and record the record. Some of
the songs are leftovers from Sub Pop
that never got used, then there was a
basic session in January of '94, then
another session in July '94, then we
finished mixing in September in New
York City, then mastering didn't re-
ally get done until January. It was a
real long process," said Roth, also
explaining that "when we were mak-
ing this record I was putting on Dr. Dre
and Snoop Dogg whenever we got a
break." That might explain something.
So that's Truly's story, and the story
behind "Fast Stories for Kid Coma."
Expect them back in the area in late
winter. And when they get here, go see
them and see what all this history has
led up to.

mance. Its difficulty stems from the
complex and dense instrumental tex-
ture that characterizes the work. The
Ann Arbor Symphony tackled the con-
stantly evolving, nuance-filled piece
with style, and was considerably more
successful than that initial orchestra
which introduced the piece at the be-
ginning of the century. Despite a few
small blips, the wind soloists captured
the music's shades with artistic preci-
sion. The strings, led by concertmaster
Stephen Shipps, poured emotion into
the wave-like phrases.
With Maestro Wong at the helm for
his fourth year, the Ann Arbor
Symphony's 1995-6 season looks prom-
ising. This is an orchestra the city can be
proud of.

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Here Is Drivin' N' Cryin' - Rest in peace, boys.

Thursday, September 28

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Drivin' N' Cryin'
Wrapped in Sky
"I am an Indian," singer Kevin Kinney
groans as the Georgia threesome open
their sixth album. Funny, because he
doesn't sound much like an Indian. He
sounds like the bastard-child of Michael
Stipe and Bob Dylan, writhing in pain,
dying of boredom. Understandable, for
Drivin' N' Cryin' are neither the first nor
the last in a long line of bland-bands to
crawl from the stagnant swamp of south-
ern-fried folk-rock where Dullness and
Mediocrity reign supreme (witness Sir
Hootie and the fish that blow).
A quick glance at the sleeve reveals
John Porteras the producer. He's worked
with the Smiths, Billy Bragg, Roxy Mu-
sic... that's a plus. But then there's the
embarrassing band name which recalls
crap glam-metal bands of the '80s like
EnuffZ'Nuff... -7 pts. Peter Buck plays
dulcimer and mandolin on two songs? +5
pts. Have you heard the news, though?
Drivin' n' Cryin' have contributed atrack
to NORML's "Hempilation" album... -6
pts., but understandable too; if you think
about it, they sound like halfthe bands on

the HORDE tour.
The big problem here is that thejingly-
jangly half-songs on "Wrapped in Sky"
lack life. With the exception of "Right
Side of Town", the verses match the
choruses with almost no variation. Re-
petitive these fellows are. At least say,
Blues Traveler, are good at fooling you
into thinking you're not hearing the same
chord progressions over and over again.
As farasthe lyrics go, they're eithertoo.
abstract or too frequently steeped in Na-
tive American imagery. Hence, the
album's best moments sneak in during
the instrumental breaks- of "under-
ground umbrella", for example. The shiny,
happy "Leader the Follow" is slightly
infectious, yes, but only to the degree that
"the Hokey Pokey" is- irritatingly so,
Also disappointing is the impression
that one gets that Drivin' N' Cryin' are
not meeting their own expectations. They
try so hard to be diverse, but instead of
something fresh and new, we get "Light",
which is both "Where The Streets Have
No Name" and "Desire" rolled into one
second-rate imitation.
Back to the swamp with this one.
- Thomas Crowley

~u w svstem and l oT ts oaCln too u us Tf!'~'" na



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