I THE SHAMEN SAGA, part 1005: Latest into on Scotland’s sordid, pagan, controversial (choose irom any one at several hundred tabloid adjectives) popsters. The Shamen are playing on Friday (24th) at the Queen Margaret Union, which just happens to be sponsored by McEwan’s Lager—the company with whom the Shamen had the recent run-in overtheirTV ad and Maytest (non) appearance. One suspects that the OMU are less than keen to continue their association with McEwan’s when the promoter issues a statement claiming that the booking oi
the Shamen is ’to get back at multinational companies screwing up Scottish independent music.’ Another interesting sideshow at the gig could be the expected picket by Christian iundamentalists, who seem to believe what they read in the ‘papers’. LISTEN can exclusively reveal that the Shamen’s Colin Angus is not the anti-Christ. Remember where you heard it lirst.
I THE RIVER DETECTIVES have just completed an arduous spell ol recording their debut album at Paladium Studios. Serious signs ol the mental strain involved in the recording process were evident when they were seen to have placed a Smash Hits poster oi Kylie Minogue on the studio door. Other signs at this studio-induced madness were copies ol Kerrangl and The Sun lying around the studio. Hopeiully none oi the three have been allowed to inlluence the album too strongly.
I ANSWERS are now being sought to the most lundamental question to be raised by the entire Nelson Mandela concert’s events. Where in God’s name did Jim Kerr get his new accent? And secondly, will anyone take him
I seriously as long as it persists?
l I COMING SOON the debut releases by l The indian Givers on the new No Mercy Record label. The label has been set up by Paladium Studios owner Jon Turner 1 and ‘an entirely mad band manager and sell publicist’ (his description, not mine) Dave Ramsden. The latter also claims to have used divine intervention to stop it raining on the recent
~ Meadows Festival. The big man above
, obliged until the appearance oi the
5 Alice House - which just goes to show
that Mr.Ramsden cannot pervert the course oi divine justice.
I LlSTENl’S GROVELLING apologies to Edinburgh-based solo artist Stephen Harrison, whose debut mini-LP ‘I Know Everything’ (with one side co-produced by Alan Rankine and Paul Haig) was reviewed underthe name oi Stephen Donaldson last issue, lor reasons unknown. Didn’t know we were going to do that, did you, Steve? Must’ve been something we ate. . .
I A NOTE FROM a new record label, Bil-Dot Records oi 157 Kensington High Street, London W8, has arrived on our doorstep, announcing that they are looking ior iresh new talent. ‘ll a band has spent many hours in a demo studio pertecting their songs,’ they say, ‘then the least we can do is give them live minutes oi our time listening to the tape.’ That sounds like an invitation to us. Tapes to the above address.
Ma? t. it. I Cindy Lee Derryhill: Who’s Gonna Save The World? (New Routes). The ominous ieelings brought on by the wall on the sleeve, leaning against a post in Anytown, USA, were uniortunately backed up by the content oi the album inside. Repeated listenings have resulted in appreciation ol the better lines in the withering ‘Oamn, Wish 1 Was a Man’ (‘l’d be sexy with a belly like Jack Nicholson/ Lord, I Wish 1 was a man/ Sayin', No lat chicks on the bumper ol my Lincoln’), but when Ms Derryhill embarks on a tortured Patti Smith trip the temptation to illp the needle on to the next track is just too hard to resist. Berryhili is not the next Suzanne Vega (but with such an inauspicious start ior your label you’ve got to make claims
like that) and her rootslest-is-best philosophy, as espoused in the monologue preceding ‘Whatever Works’, is disproved by the dated ioiksiness and meek, sentimental slop. (Mab)
I Various: Hot Cookies (Cooking Vinyl). What could possibly unite a radical reworking oi The Cramps’ Human Fly (by The Horseliies, using both acoustic instruments and technical hardware) with Sweet Honey In The Rock’s breathtaking a capeila ‘Chiie Your Waters Run Red Through Soweto’? Only the eclectic policy ol Cooking Vinyl records, one oi the hippest labels around. ‘Hot Cookies’ is a sampler oi the label’s wares, with amazingly diverse parameters. The above-named acts, the traditional-English-based sounds oi The Oyster Band, The Happy End, Michelle Shocked, S.E. Rogie, The Mekons and more. . . all add up to a delightiul stew oi what, at a pinch, could be called ‘roots’ music. And it’s cheaper than most 12in chart singles,
I Bob Dylan: Down In The Groove (CBS). The opening version ot ‘Let’s Stick Together’ is so truly horrendous that it makes listening to the rest oi this album a truly daunting prospect. Fortunately, the rest is not oi the' same standard, although it is hardly challenging or arresting listening. What I want to know is: (a) why Dylan does so many (bad) cover versions when he is widely considered one oi the greatest writers ol all time? (b) why he insists on some awkward arrangements, when a lot oi his best work came when he used the simpler acoustic lormat. Some oi the songs herein would delinltely benelit irom acoustic perlormance.
Perhaps it Dylan thought more about the track selection and arrangements this would not be such a poor album. Having said that no doubts can be cast overthe quality oi the musicianship, . when guests include various Dire Straits, Grateiul Dead, Eric Clapton and even Full Force. The problem is that while they provide maximum competence the end result is minimum excitment.
Having said that, this is not Dylan’s worst recent album, and nearly everything is betterthan his tracks on the recent Hearts at Fire soundtrack, irom which Had A Dream About You, Baby, reappears. Yet it goes without saying that everything is worse than, say, the songs on Blood on the Tracks. A llnal encouraging lactor: the one track oi real quality, Silvio, is co-written by Dylan, and suggests that
no Dylan album should, even now, be, completely ignored. ' *' Perhaps inspired by some perverse leellng ol pity, i did try to like this album. I tried very hard, but tailed.- (John Williamson). ' '
I MC Bronx: Top Cat Rap (100 2 One). The woodwork squeaks . . . and out come the novelty records. Exactly what it says, a rap about the animated leline version at Sergeant Dilko, this makes a lot more sense in context: a taster tor the upcoming tribute to thirty years oi Hanna-Barbara cartoons, with tracks dedicated to The Flintstones, Scooby Doo, Wacky Races, and the rest. I strongly suspect this will be a nauseatineg big hit, and at the moment, only the catchy llourishes oi brass are keeping it irom the back at the collection. Oh, 1 lie, I lie, l’ve played it twice in the last ten minutes. (Mab) I Radium Cats: Munster Madness E.P.(Mental). Edinburgh’s Radium Cats are mired in deepest swampabilly territory. ‘Munster Madness’ sees them gazing out at the world with the rest oi the Muster clan around them, and at course there’s a brlet rendition oi the ‘Munsters’ theme, along with such titles as ‘Howling In The Swamp’, ‘Screaming From The Grave’ and ‘Jungle Drums’. Needless to say, they have a great line in multi-coloured quills. It must also be said that, though they’re better live, they’ve got THAT SOUND oil to a tee, winning extra points ior the stand-up bass. (Mab)
— PLAYLIST JOHN’S LIST
1. Do Re Mi: The Happiest Place in Town (Virgin album).
2. Voice Oi The Beehive: Let It Bee (London, album).
3. Lavine Hudson: Flesh at My Flesh (Virgin, lorthcoming single).
4. .1le Take Me To The Girl (Jungle, 12‘).
5. Sam Brown: lt Makes Me Wonder (AaM, LPtrack).
6. Jullsa Fordham: Unconditional Love (Circa, LP track).
7. Tyka Nelson: Marc Anthony's Tune (Cooltempo, LP track).
8. The Steel Chain: Singing In The Rain (demo).
9. Nanci Grillith: Love at the Five and Dime (Demon, LP track). 10. Natalie Cole: Jump Start (Manhattan, old single).
I Edinburgh Musicians Collective Gig \'enue. ('alton Road. 557 3073. Lineup still to he announced.
I God Squad Music Box. Victoria Street. ? 2211 Hus. 9.30pm. Free.
I Exposure Preservation Hall. Victoria
Street. 220 38H». ‘).3t)pm. Free. Pres
Hall's hard rock night.
I The Volunteers (‘anns Man's. .‘vlorningside Road. 447 1484. 8.30pm. Free. Residenc}.
I Blaque Jacques Shellaque Negoeianis. Lothian Street. 225 6313. 9pm. Free.
4341. illpm. Free. L'nconfirmed.
I Live band Lord Darnle)‘. West Port . 229
TUESDAY 5 Glasgow
I Jive Ass La Taniere. Fox Street. 9pm. Free.
I The Indian Givers Bar Luxembourg. 197 Pitt Street. illpm. Free. Part ofa Bryl (‘ream promotion. The new line up has brought with it a huge improvement in the Indian (iivers' live set. and now the high quality songs are no longer undersold.
I Bobby Wishart Halt Bar. Woodlands Road. 9pm. Free. Residency — ofcourse.
I UnderThe Covers Music Box. Victoria
Street. 221) 1708. 9.30pm. Free. Acoustic Sixties cover band. over from Glasgow. I The Rootsie Tootsie Blues Trio Preservation Hall. Victoria Street. 226 3816. 9.3ilpm. Free.
I GOOD and Gone Negociants. [.othian Street. 225 6313. 9pm. Free. See Sat 25. I One Fine Weekend Lord Darnlev. W'esl Port. 229 4341. llipm. Free.
I Willy Logan (‘annv Man's..\10rningside Road. 447 1484. 8.30pm. Free. Residencv.
WEDNESDAY 6 Glasgow I And NOW The World Fixx. Miller Street.
This may he a good chance to see tovvhat extent their early promise has been fulfilled. (inod vocalist. with some light jazz touches.
I Naitan Halt Bar. Woodlands Road. Residencv.
I James Taylor Playhouse Theatre. (ireenside Place. 557 25911. 7.3(lpm. £10. £9. See panel.
I Eat The Peach Lord Darnlev. West Port. 2294341. liipm. Free. Largely-female. pop-orientated.
I Tam White Négociants. Lothian Street. 225 6313. 9pm. Free. See Wed 29.
42 The List 24 June — 7 July 1988