RECORD REVIEWS MUSIC
I Charlie lladen a The Liberation Music Orchestra: Dream Keeper (DIW) the Liberation Music Orchestra has been one of Charlie Haden‘s most popular projects. in large part because it has harnessed some impressively free-ranging improvisation within the highly accessible framework of Carla Bley‘s colourful arrangements. often of popular or revolutionary tunes. Live. they can get very self-indulgent. but on record the arrangements are given full weight. 'Dream Keeper‘ is a mini-suite which incorporates Spanish and South American liberation songs within Bley's own music. ‘Rabo de Nube‘ and Iladen’s ‘Sandino‘ carry on the Latin theme. ‘Nkosi Sikelel'i Afrika‘ gets an extended treatment. and the album ends on the gospel-saturated ‘Spiritual .‘ complete with choir. The large ensemble is along the usual lines. with the addition of Branford Marsalis on a couple of cuts. (Kenny Mathieson) I Frederic Bzewsltlz North American Ballads & Squares (hat ART) American composer and virtuoso pianist Rzewski has made a virtue of moulding often challengingly contemporary music out of themes culled from folk and protest songs. as in his mammoth The People United Will Never Be Defeated. This disc is a rather more accessible example of his work. notably in the four North American Ballads. which draw on both jazz and folk themes and motifs. The Squares are more spikily formal. but equally intriguing. The tradition of 'composer-performers is a long and venerable one. as a recent Masterworks recording of adopted American Bela Bartok playing selections from his piano compendium Mikrokosmos (Sony) reminds us. Also included is his electrifying trio piece Contrasts. with violinist Joseph Szigeti and clarinetist Benny Goodman. (Kenny Mathieson)
I Ian McCulIoch: Lover Lover Lover (East West) What. another one? After I’m Your Fart , and Mac‘s own version of ‘Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye’. a Leonard Cohen cover is hardly the freshest thing one could do right now. Not that Mac would worry about being predictable so long as he‘s brilliant - and.
. slips into a scary.
undeniably. the song suits him a lot better than that white polo-neck he's taken to sporting lately. A hit. I hope. (AM)
I 2 Tone Committee: Being From A Word Struclt Surlace (23rd Precinct) That‘s right. 23rd Precinct is the label that‘s run from Glasgow’s invaluable dance/rock record shop of the same name. and this 33rpm single alone is enough to justify its existence. The main reason you should get hold of it is the third track. ‘Hangman‘. a nasty piece of work taken at such a furious speed that the rap
incomprehensible babble. Edgy and vital. (AM)
I Mouth Music and Matti Maclnnes: Blue Door Green Sea (Triple Earth) Martin Swan‘s procedure of blending Gaelic songs
with modern studio sounds is a hit and miss thing. and here the stern. clinical rhythm track with its one-note synth-bass ‘boing' fights against Mairi Maclnnes‘s traditional vocal style with no winners emerging. Nothing gels. and the backing tracks themselves are. frankly. offputting creations. (AM)
I Blalte Babies: Rosy Jaclt World (Mammoth) Sadly. the Blake Babies album Earwig got generally overlooked in the tidal wave of US talent that swamped Britain in the late 805. Don‘t letthe same happen to these five g tracks of superior American indie rock. Gently persuasive and. in the case of the first song. ‘Temptation Eyes’. delicious. (AM)
I Float: Crazed Up With Happiness EP (Telepathy) Great bass intro. great ascending and descending jet plane roar of a riff. great dicking about without actually pinning down the chorus. Angular and funky and swaggering more cleverly erratically than most otherfolks. (CMcL)
I Pele: Megalomanla (Polydot) Another bout of innovation from the cinemascopic range of Pele. Searching for the young soul rebels. Pele have cornered them hiding out as hillbilly ragamuffins. And this is their theme tune in all its airwave-friendly.
I Eddl Beader: What You Do With What You’ve Got (RCA) Another anodyne balm from the divine Miss R. Too Utopian and utterly. utterly ghostly bewitching to cut through the chaff. Like its exemplary parent album. this is too good forthe humdrum likes of you and me. (CMcL)
I PM Dawn: Reality Used To Be A Friend Of Mine (Gee SII’BBI) And the question begs to be asked: Has dusk settled on PM's Dawn? Hell. no. Riding high Stateside. they‘ll be riding high this side too. thanks to gently hip. chugging. chart-friendly CJ Mackintosh remixes. Add to the ﬂip side aTodd Terry Remix of ‘A Watcher‘s Point OfView‘. where the usual PM Dawn Beatle-style rap is turned into a house record. and you can't lose. Morning has broken. (PO)
I Konspiracy: It’s Alright (Shut Up And Dance)This song is extremely annoying for three reasons: one. it‘s practically impossible to dance to because the beats are so frenetic: two. one line. ‘lt‘s alright to love me. baby'. is repeated ad nauseam; three. you end up singing this line at various points throughout the day and look like an idiot. It‘ll be a hit. (PO) I SIy & Lovechild: Spirit OI Destiny (Citybeat)/Dodge City: The Road In FrontOI Me (4th & Broadway) If the hype's anything to go by. both of these acts are destined for big things. Working their way through the London Clubland. the unusually talented Sly & Lovechild fuse thronging. soulful vocals with a pulsating. hard-edged beat. Similarly. Dodge City worked their way up through the London jazz scene with a sound that borders on jazz vibe . tempered with a strong hip hop groove and a heavy dose of soul and R&B. (PO)
I Marl Wilson: My Funny Valentine (Dino) Ex-beehive queen lets her hair down — literally — for a new life as a chanteuse of songs like the title track and ‘Cry Me A River‘. Radio 2 might go forit. but I’m not puttinglarge wodges of money on a full- scale career revival. (AM)
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The List 14 — 27 February 1992 33