I Natural Life: Natural Lite (Hollywood) Natural Life are so Green card-waving cco-conscious that the CD of this, their debut album, even has a recycled cardboard casing. bumming an extra 40p onto the asking price which is all fairly laudable. as were their first three singles, ‘Strange World'. ‘Natural Life‘ and the excellent writhing Egypto-dancc of ‘The Promise‘. all of which are sensibly included here. What are less impressive are their sub~Seal acoustic strolls through the mainstream rock ethic that pervade the second side. where they lose their message of vibed-up positivity by virtue of the vapid earnestness of the supportingtunes. (Calvin Bush)

I lioney Tongue: Nude Nudes (Playtime) Harsh tones. abrasive guitars and bludgeoning rhythms are the currency you would expect from ex-Perfect Disaster and part-time Breeder Josephine Wiggs, but with the percussive assistance of Spiritualized‘s Jon Mattock she has produced surprise which swings, lopes and hesitates rather than bruises. Honey Tongue don’t quite trawl the same depths of hazardous emotion that PJ Harvey rub our faces in, but the two frontwomen present their material in a

Natural Lite similar vein, with sparse. traditional arrangements

on which to hang their

upfront vocals. Where Polly is most definitely

lady-sings-the-blues. : Josephine is a lisping Nico

utilising jazz-influenced ducking and diving vocal phrasing. Not a triumph of variety. but a curiosity to

submerge yourselfin.

(Fiona Shepherd)

I Del Leppard: Adrenalize (Bludgeon Rillola) They are heavy metal‘s

' cro-magnon ubermensch.

- They release a new album every four years. which

1' everybody on the planet

then buys. They ride

. rock's gnarly beast,

bare-backed and

bubble-permcd. They are

hard noisc's burly

blacksmiths, forging red ; hot riffs. their

anvil-headed masculinity

: decreeing that they ‘Make

Love Like A Man‘ (‘Don't

;‘ call me gigolo. don 'r call

5 me Casanova, just call me on the phone, well baby

i come on over'). They are

the bestest. cartooniest. heterosexiest rockgod

.' overlords. They are not . Manic Street Preachers. . (CraigMcLean)

I Primus: Sucli On This

5 (Interscope) Fresh from

: Bill And Ted's Bogus

g Journey. Primusthrust

- forward a quick live

, release before descending forthe imminent kill

supporting Rush at the SECC. Sensibly, they‘ve

; opted for an older ': recording - early ’89 - and

Honey Tongue

it comes off very well indeed. They stay tight through stop-start breaks and sly. quirky rhythms. switching suddenly from mayhem to a laid-back

drawl. A live band, to be

sure, with Les Claypool’s vocal bickering lifting tracks like ‘Harold Of The Rocks’ above the norm. ‘We‘rc Primus. and we suck.'They don’t. but I can think of other bands who should borrow that line. (Gavin Inglis)

I John Tavener: The Protecting Veil (Virgin) This

I work for cello and strings

was acclaimed on its Proms debut in 1989. and

g the first recording justifies

the praise heaped on it. A

; dark. brooding piece shot ; through with startling outbursts from the strings,

it draws much of its appeal from the singing cello line

which runs almost

, unbroken throughout, and is ravishingly played = by Steven lsserlis.

Tavener has established a distinctive voice in

contemporary music, and this piece must now stand

' alongside the best of his vocalworks.Graham

Fitkin has yet to achieve that degree of individuality. but the static harmonies and

' pointed rhythmic cycles of . the three pieces on Slow

(Argo) reveal a lively imagination and well- developed structural sense. (Kenny Mathieson) I Schubert: Symphonies 5 a 8 (Decca) Herbert Blomstedt’s tenure with the San Francisco Symphony has already produced spectacular results, notably a superb

. cycle of the Nielsen

symphonies, but they are

: equally at home inthese masterpiecesof the

central repertoire. The playing is impeccable, as is the fresh but authoritatively- judged interpretation (the sunny mood of No 5 is not at all

overdone here). Highly

recommended, as is the set of Chopin’s Piano

. Sonatas by Leif Ove Andsnes on Virgin. The

young Norwegian is

' tipped for mega-success. : and with good reason on the evidence of his playing


here, and on an earlier

. disc of Grieg and Liszt Concertos. On the subject 3 of Grieg, his rather

neglected Chamber Music

is collected on a three-disc set from Chant Du Monde, although it may appeal more to converts than the simply curious. (Kenny Mathieson)

I Leon Redbone: Up The Lazy River (Private Music) If anything, this is an even odder set than Sugar, but no less wonderful. Redbone plunders the by-ways of the vaudeville and early jazz tradition in his inimitable fashion. and throws in a few homogenous original

compositions for good measure. He is so laid-back that it is a wonder he can still stand up, far less make infectiously likeable records; as usual, the sidemen and women (not to mention dog) are excellent. Back at home, meanwhile, two doyens of the British trad-jazz scene, Messrs Lyttelton and Bilk, take a more orthodox slant on Ar Sundown (Calligraph). (Kenny Mathieson)

I Anthony Braxton: Quartet (Birmingham) 1985 (Leo Records) Leo’s second complete concert release from Braxton’s 1985 tour characteristically features an almost entirely different set to that on the earlier London one, also freshly re-issued on CD. This is questing contemporary music - jazz hardly seems the appropriate word played by highly inventive musicians, with the splendid Marilyn Crispell on piano, Mark Dresser on bass, and percussionist Gerry Hemingway. Leo also issue a delightful solo piano set by Sergey Kuryokhin, Some Combinations of Fingers and Passion, which switches registers - from American jazz through to Russian folk tunes with accomplished ease , but comes out sounding idiosyncratically individual at every turn. (Kenny Mathieson)


I The Pineapples: Cacahuates EP (Rapture) Produced by Kramer, these New Yorkers’ debut four-track comes with one scorcher (the parched vocals and hook’n’pull anti~gravity rhythms of ‘Leave Your Waste'), one easy tap-in (the too-Pixies ‘Dr Strange’) and a coupla exciting near-misses (‘Stand On The Edge’ and ‘House Of Pain’). (CB)

I llch Beach (Rising lligh Records) From deep within the bunker of House comes yet another track of great trace-lighting beauty courtesy of Caspar Pound and ex-Shamen singer Plavka. To be served on ice, before a roaring log fire in the late night darkness. (CB)

I Mario Bros: Gonna Be (Hull Duality) Y’all ready for this? No, nothing to do with that super wee Nintendo man, but a Finnish HM band who have been converted to Farrakhan‘s Muslim faith. They take a basic techno backbeat, inject Rebel MC-type triblebass. then have the audacity to sample The Proclaimers' ‘l’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)‘, on top of which they add a hom-playing performing seal.

Ridiculous, crap and an Auchtermuchty lawsuit in the post (PO)

I Don-E: Love Italics The World Go Round (island) When you sift through the hype and record company bullshit (‘The future is an index of possibilities 'which only the music can

I fully articulate.’), you can

actually find a very talented singer-songwriter. ‘Love . . .’ is a fresh summer groove not unlike Stevie Wonder‘s recentJungle Fever material. Most promising. (P0) P8: Ladies, he’s got all the bits, if you know what I mean.

I Nitzer Ebb: Ascend (Mute) Fussy packaging which eventually yields four mixes of one song plus extra tracks. The squelchy remix of ‘Lakeside Drive’ is the best thing on offer; apart from that it's testosterone overkill. Do Nitzer Ebb . aspire to anything more progressive than flexing their masculinity? (FS)

I Midway Silll: BetterThan Before (Roughneck) You expect more from Midway Still: melodies that light your way to bed , riffs that lodge tenaciously in your head thwarting those fence-vaulting sheep, a volume that would keep Rip Van Winkle from peaceful slumber, and here they are sounding like absolutely anybody at all. Frightening. (F8)

I Lalhach: Wirtschatt lst Tot (Mute) The continental KLF deliver their take on the theme music from Hallowe'en. Insidious keyboard pulse and lacerated guitar spar for supremacy , wielding cleavers when you’re not looking. But oblivious to . the punch of understatement, Laibach also feel it incumbent upon themselves to push this thriller into the realms of schlock with camp Germanic yodelling. Some knockwurst with your nightmare, sir? (FS)

I Hugh am And The Velvet Underpants: Satellite Baby Space Baby (Bail) Did anyone expect The ’Pants to reach their second single, and without corporate sponsorship? Maybe it's Hugh’s

capacity for . self-premotion , or hey, maybe it’s their catch-all scope - the lead track is a Casio-composed bid for the techno stakes, ‘Stamp Collecting' goes for that thrashy punk market, and ‘Vote Monster Raving Loony’ is their topical protest gambit. So crap it’s vital for your sanity. (F3)

I Ann Consuelo: See The Day (Champion) Of late, Champion’s title hopes haven’t been as successful as a certain gentleman from Croy’s. However, off the ropes they will come , out to dance their way around Top 40canvas once more. Ann Consuelo (formerly Subterrania) is a knockout piece of Swedish house which gets your southpaw fist pumping in the air, forces your hips to duck and . dive , and your feet to lead a merry dance around the ring. Quite remarkable. (P0)

I Breed: Gonna Let You Be (Dance Zone) Cosmopolitan or what? Echoes of Charvonne and Loletta Holloway, as soaraway vocals crash headlong into ltalian style rumny piano hook. Yet it’s straight out of Londons D~Zone; a three track 12in featuring the above , and two versions of ‘Keep Movin’ On’, a bleepy version-with Record Mirror’s James Hamilton chanting ‘Oh no, not more sub bass’, and a rather stylish Northern Soul attempt. Combined, it hits your D-Spot full on to give maximum sweaty secretions. (PO)

I Mint Condltion: Braakin’ My Heart (Mil) Mint Condition (crap name) wre discovered at a local black music showcase by demi-gods Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. The second UK release on their Perspective label , this was a Top 10 hit Stateside and it shows: ‘timely’ watertight production from J ellybean Johnson makes for a slow moving synth string-orientated sentimental slush, where the macho frontman gives a heart breakin’ plea for mercy. You’re more likely to break wind. (PO)

I Jagdeep Slngh: Who’s Gonna Love You? (Nora Protein) The everyday story of an Asian guy from a fairly orthodox - background who meets George O’Dowd and signs a record contract. I was expecting some sort of incomprehensible rap spurted bhangra rhythms. but no, this a rather nice slice of British soul. Verging on that Kenny Thomas sound, it may well creep into the Top40 but, with its summery feel, methinks it has been released at the wrong time

I of year. (PO)

The List 10— 23 April 1992 31