would not work with another horn player after Shorter. and the current line-up keeps to that pledge. with bassman Gerard Veasley. drummer Michael Baker and percussionist Robert Thomas Jr making tip the band.
The resulting music reflects Zawinul‘s acute musical sensibility. expressed in compelling melodies and a rich intermingling of rhythmic and instrumental textures. although for these cars it lacks the freshness and individuality which marked out Weather Report from the field, or which now distinguishes the rather different direction taken by Steve Coleman. whose alternative route to a jazz-funk fusion is discussed elsewhere in this heavin fusion-laden issue.
‘The new band is great. It was a wonderful combination before. but this is different. It's harder not to clash with two melody and harmony instruments up there. but I have more control over what is happening in the music now. The sound has always been a growing thing. and with electronics. especially analogue electronics. I have been able to create just what I wanted in terms of soundsf
Joe Zawinul still reckons he knows which way the wind blows. and is out to prove it — not that he needs to — all over again.
The Zawinul Syndicate play at the Queen '3' Hall in Edinburgh on 16 November. and the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow on I 7 November, as part of the Ferguson Jazz series. See Listings.
The funniest single around right now, and one packed with overlapping melodies, is Five Thirty’s ‘Air Conditioned Nightmare', a psychedelic pastiche straight from the Swinging London oi I Was Lord Kitchener’s Valet, Rickenbacker guitars and love beads. 80 well do they set the scene, that an anachronistic reference to a current Cabinet member makes it all the stranger. The band’s singer, Tara, attempts to explain.
‘The song came out of a bit of a dream sequence. I dreamt I saw a UFO one night and, like you do when you try to write a song, you’re always on the lookout for some new approach to write a song about, and I just turned it from that into a scenario; a child inside a UFO that was the Messiah and came down to London and had to get a cab to
. ‘ ~ ~
Piccadilly to address the people — who I
reierto as the pigeons. I wanted to go
into the attitudes he would incur during '
this, and the things that the layman
would say to him, and “Is your name Douglas Hurd?" just seemed poignant.’
Five Thirty are almost like The Jam on acid. Why is it that ﬁlls influences are stronger than ever right now?
‘The 60s gave rise to some geniuses in music, like The Beatles and Hendrix, and people realised you could be a genius in contemporary music, and I suppose things still haven’t recovered from that. They were so far ahead of their time that what they did still doesn’t sound dated. There is so much to draw on. It's all about eclecticism anyway. The same thing applies now— you take a bit of this, a bit of that and make it your own. I’ve never really looked into the history of where our sound comes from. I try not to define it too much, because I feel it limits things if you do that.‘ (Alastair Mabbott)
Five Thirty play The Venue, Edinburgh :3 Fri 9 and King Tut’s, Glasgow on Sat
-, - .- I, ’r'. 7,4,
Marion Carey. librettist with Paragon Ensemble
Now in its tenth anniversary season, the Glasgow-based Paragon Ensemble is not content to rest on its well-earned laurels and spend the year patting itself on the back. Far lrom it. Alter an ambitious birthday programme last month, a move to a permanent office and the recently created post of full-time administrator, November sees the launch of a new venture — Paragon Opera Project, or POP as it otherwise seems to be known. The first production is The Loving of Etain, a special commission by composer Edward McGuire — his first opera — and
librettist Marianne Carey, which will be performed in Glasgow on Friday 9 and Saturday 10. Described as ‘A Celtic myth portraying the epic struggle between mortal and immortal . . . jealousy. . . betrayal . . .conilict. . . and love eternal‘, Etain is, says the group’s artistic director David Davies,
. ‘McGuire at his best. Absolutely
beautilul. It’s very much inlluenced by
- folk music, but all original McGuire,
right from the lirst few bars of the overture. The great thing about any McGuire score is that it all works so well musically.’ The cast assembled by Paragon is a young one, with five singers covering something like 39 roles. ‘They've all been doing a lot at interesting things in the last couple of years and are very much rising stars at the moment,’ says Davies. ‘There‘s no chorus. This is chamber opera, with an orchestra of fourteen players, and some very interesting percussion, including a pair of garden shears.‘ Already, there has been considerable interest in taking Etain on tour, both in
. the UK and abroad, so it looks as it
Paragon Opera Project will live up to its acronym. ‘Yes,’ says Davies, ‘I think it will be popular. It’s userlriendly, listener friendly and composer friendly. No hassle at all.’ (Carol Main) The Loving of Etain, Friday 9 and Saturday 10, New Athenaeum Theatre, RSAMD, 100 Renfrew Street, 332 5057. See Classical Listings.
EV WGISSV'IO ZV 0180M '9 )l'lOJ UV 1H9” 07 NW 98 83018 '8 X308
three newies and hey presto! - grindcore meets dancefloor and a raucous good time ensues for all. The title track welds shufﬂing drums to fizzing powerchords. and while vocalist Sice prefers ‘intoning' to actual ‘singing‘. the resultant noise frenzy is captivating to the max. And ifthe adrenalin rush of the ilk displayed on ‘Aldous' and ‘Swansong‘ is an axiomatic trait. then the Boo Radleys are set to do great things for that crazy world of rock‘n‘roll. ((‘Mcl.)
I Bleach: Eclipse EP(Way Cool) Sleeve ofthc fortnight. but the praise collected so far by this three-piece‘s debut has perhaps been over-done. ‘Crimson 0' would fit far too snugly into the lower reaches of Peel‘s Festive Fifty. where similarly unfocused meanderings have resided for the better part of a decade. The other two tracks waver between outstanding and underwhelming. ‘Wipc it Away' being the missing link between Joy Division and early Fuzzbox. Plenty ofpotential. only some of it glimpsed. (Mab).
I Baby's Got a Gun: Take the Ride (No Mercy) In the past I‘ve been impressed by the Babes‘ turbo- driven leather-clad rock. but they‘ve Chosen an awful chant to announce their arrival. Apparently. it was deemed the most obvious and catchy track they had. but ‘na-na-na' songs have to be very strong in other respects if they‘re destined not to embarrass. And this isn't. (Mab)
I Inspiral Carpets: Island Head EP (Mute) Inspiral
(‘arpets are such an
anomaly. Is this bunch of
organ-toting 60$ revivalists really on TV every other week. and if
f they weren‘tswept along in the Manchester wave
i would they ever make it
' within gobbing distance of
a camera? As Island Head
i shows. they have as much
musically to do with bagginess as The Thanes. Other groups are blazing
, trailsintothe 9()s.lnspiral
Carpets are still directing traffic. (Mab)
I Del Amitri: Spit inthe Rain (A&M) The Dcls strike another blow in their bid to be the Faces of the 90s. and Justin ('urrie their Rod Stewart. (‘alifornia will clutch them to its bosom. (‘an the cover of Rolling Stone be far off? (Mab)
The List 9 — 22 November 199033