' action. Consider the singles. ‘Dusted'.
we are told. is a sordid tale of rape and bad heroin trips. but comes cocooned in a barrelling shimmer and shake of a tune. On ‘Gepetto‘. we‘re hearing dark childhood memories lightly skipping down the years. ‘Feed The Tree’ talks burial and remembrance. yet walks like pop on a (very catchy) stick. There are another twelve songs on Star. All equally evocative in the imagery stakes. all equally memorable in their grab- your-giblets-and-squeeze amiability. Me. I’m still limping and still grinning and most deﬁnitely Star-struck.
And so is Tanya. 'lt’s a lot harder than I thought it was gonna she reckons of her recent promotion to centre-stage. For ten years. she hovered on the sidelines. mostly in Throwing Muses with her half-sister Kristin Hersh absorbing the limelight. then later. more brieﬂy. in The Breeders.
‘That was mainly Kim’s (Deal. of Pixies) thing because it was her songs. But I did definitely learn a lot. I also gained a lot of confidence — it was like, “Wow! I can do something else". Everything is a learning experience — in everything that you do. you’re gonna learn something that you can bring into something else. That’s why I advocate playing in as many bands as possible!’ she enunciates with the firm conviction
5 frame of publicity. has served her well.
eagerly. beaverly and READY TO
of a presidential candidate.
Of course. Tanya ain’t as slimy as a presidential candidate. Her chat and her songs are bare-boned and fresh. stripping away allusory guff and evasive bluff. In this respect. her lengthy apprenticeship in other bands. foreverjust out-of—shot in the freeze-
With Belly she comes to the forefront
ROCK! Kind of.
‘lt’s a lot harder than I thought it was gonna be!’ she giggles when considering this fronting-a-band lark. ‘It’s not an easy job being entertaining. The weird thing about it is that you start making music and playing for yourself because you’re lonely and ugly and bored! And then all of a sudden everybody wants to talk to y‘all.’ she seems to draw]. ‘and you’re still lonely and ugly and bored.‘
Ten years. though — ten years of. certainly on this side of the ‘pond’. . half-lit stardom. Surely she’s not still so I
‘I’m a dinosuar of indie-rock. is that what you’re saying?’
Not at all.
‘The Jimmy Page of indie—rock!’
If you like. Certainly. speaking tenuous link-wise. Mr Page was known to dabble in the. urn. darker kinks in l
the psyche of our (un)earthly existence. just as Ms Donnelly likes to. But while his interests were positively satanic. hers are of a more gothic. fairy tale-ish hue. So while she can merrily say of Belly. ‘lt‘s a little bit more of a pop thing. because that’s what comes most naturally to me as a song writer,‘ also be aware of the subtleties and intrigue lying beneath the rejoinder ‘but the album’s a little bit spooky in some places.‘
Cue all manner of witches, moons. dead dogs and eerie frighteners. Star
ﬂits between all of these. Tanya’s voice manages to sound haunted and hallowed. at one moment echoing the purity of Sinead. at another tracing the anguish of P]. In the background a l country ﬂame flickers (‘Ooh. I love country music!’). ghostly silences say ‘howdy’ (‘Noise does not a good song I make!’). and mysterious voids go ‘Wooooo’ (‘There is something cool about a record . . . being spooky. And quiet.’).
This is Star. ‘All of my music does sound poppy but my lyrics are less so.’ Tanya Donelly puts it straight. ‘A strange combination.’ she muses. ‘I‘m still working on it.’ she teases.
Belly play Queen Margaret Union. Glasgow on Fri 1 9. Star is (m 4A0 Records.
for Romania. with all kinds of advanced gadgetry on board. Conﬁrmed so far are Fish. Dan (Nazareth) McCafTerty and The Party Boys. Tickets. going for £6.50. will be available soon. For information. contact Nick Donald or John Williamson on 041 332 5235.
9,; .5 . I ‘t‘. X l3 3 F . ’ Pantera: marked for me
I Tattoo freaks who want to eyeball on some of the most. er. appealing etchings in the business just need to trundle along to Tower Records. Argyle Street. Glasgow on Valentine's Day. where. from lpm onwards. Pantera will be signing copies of their new album. Vulgar [)ispltrv Of Power. Vulgar display of something. certainly
I Roddy Frame is back treading the boards. "I‘wo
years ago. he opened Bob
Dylan’s London shows. and now The '/.im has asked him back for two of the six Dylan concerts at Hammersmith Apollo this year. And since you're wondering. Frame is ‘currently putting the finishing touches' to the forthcoming Aztec Camera LP.
I Following the ﬁre and subsequent water damage at The Apollo in Glasgow last year. the recording studio part of the complex has reopened in the basement of Merchant City Music at 7 Garth Street (off Glassford Street). G1 lUT. and can be phoned on ()41 552 6290. Allegedly the first computer-automated studio of its kind in Scotland. Apollo will be able to offer digital recordings of ‘unsurpassed quality" to be made with direct-to-disk technology. Incidentally. studio partners Andy Haldane and Calum McLean had their first national Top 40 hit recently with TI'F's ‘New Iimotion‘ EP. and their handiwork can also be found on singles by Suburban Delay. Ultrasonic and Damian.
The List 12—25 February I993 31