MUSIC RECORD REVIEWS
Philip Dorwerd reviews the Easter releases.
Got that Good Friday feeling? A little ‘Hung Up'? Paul Weller‘s the latter but. his new Go! Discs EP is bizarrely listenable with three cracking guitar tracks balanced with the surreal sonic ‘Kosmos’ as remixed by Brendon Lynch and already revered by the likes of Siam and Andy Weatherall. Never ones to miss a trick. those cheeky young disciples James have got one A. Weatherall to create a mind-bending 30-minute version of their new track ‘Jam-J‘ (Fontana). The normal version. weaving in and out of dub rock. isn’t much more accessible.
Like Weatherall, Sasha is an innovator and his phase-inating rhythms are always ajoyous occasion. This time the deadly deed is done to llysterix’s ‘Talk To Me‘ (Deconstruction) which squawks hypnotic wild moods upon which hysteria awaits. Come Saturday morning, everybody’s looking lost. A new saviour seems to emerge in the form of lladdaway. but not only is ‘Rock My Heart‘ (Logic) truly awful Euro-trance but it‘s a certain home banker for his fourth Top 10 hit. The black sabbath is saved by 'Wau Wau Wau‘ (WEA) from new rap prodigy lucas. With a chorus not a million Jehovahs away from Funkdoobiest‘s ‘Bow Wow Wow‘, this slinky laid-back groove that could well find itselfa chart position if Mark Goodier mistakes it for the new Blur single.
So to Sunday morning, and the good news that there is an amazing discovery in the (flick) Cave. Not only does this man sing like he‘s been raised from the dead but he looks like it as well. Seduction by his new single, ‘Let Love ln‘ (Mute). is a bit like being molested by a rotting lettuce, but still he’s a clever scribe as the ballad ‘Cassiel's Song’ proves. Running down Calton Hill is egghead Phunky Torso. who proves with his ‘Innocent EP’ (Triumph) that the funshine’s in Leith. Dance if you dare to acid overtures. deep Houses of Gaia and trancey states of flux. Rejoice.
' Jewel (london)
Marcella Detroit is a ballerina in football boots, an angelic voice that brings a tear to the eye like the removal of nasal hair with tweezers. She gets all Monalistic about the twenty years she’s spent knocking on the heavenly door of success (she co- wrote ‘Lay Down Sally’ with Eric Clapton), only to achieve it overnight. ; Today, she stands as a victim of her
i own excess. ‘Jewel’ is a disanningly
radio-friendly LP: ‘I Believe’ is
anonymous, ‘Perfect World’ smarts of
Wendy and Lisa in their post-amethyst
! period, while ‘You Don’t Tell Me Everything’ IS Belinda CarlisIe/The Go-
Co’s/crap (delete as appropriate). MDIleover, if you were expecting something radical then forget it; this is a woman who duets with Elton John and appears on the MDIIose Jack Dee’s show. If that’s not a recipe for Friday night pipe and slippers then I’m Michael Bolton.
Thankfully MDIltality is arrested with some Mlllisels of innovation; the bizarre ‘Art Of Melancholy’ is eccentric self-examination, while ‘Cool People’ disembowels wearers of Caultier underpants. ‘Detroit’,
' meanwhile, is an endearing account of her return to Motor City. It’s about going back to your roots, the sounds that you trust, the people that you believe in . . . Pipe, slippers, boy, do I dig that Michael Bolton! (Philip
THE SIMON THOUMIRE THREE
Waltzes For Playboys (Acoustic Radio) That ‘three’ is kind of old-fashioned, but their music does not fall into a similar category. Concertina wizard Thoumire - and just how does he get so much out of that little box? - is one of the most exciting young talents on the Edinburgh folk scene, while his collaborators, guitarist Kevin Mackenzie and double bass player Brian Shiels, are very much jazzers. The music they create, while not yet the finished article, falls somewhere in between.
Other than on two tunes by Macltenzie, the jan players make the
bigger concession to folk models, notably on the slower tunes (although even they deviate in subtle ways from the standard approach), but also on the various reels, jigs and general uptempo madness, where Mackenzie responds to Thoumire’s dazzling finger-work in a rhythmic comping style very unlike his usual mode, while Shiels weighs in with a buoyant walking bass.
The concept is a little under- developed in places as yet, but for the most part it is exhilarating stuff, and leaves us with the promise of exciting directions to come. The trio material is augmented by a couple of cuts on which Simon is paired with guitarist Sandy Wright, including the stately title track. (Kenny Mathieson)
'Vauxhall And I (Parlophone)
.llever been much of a fan of *Morrissey; too wrapped up in his own :tortured cerebrality, too prone to wallowing, too difficult to disassociate his music from his fans’ :collective patheticness, too much of a :myth. ‘Vauxhall And I’, though, sounds like he means it. Prodding you to this conclusion is the total brilliance of the first track. ‘llow My Heart Is Full’ is delicate and soaring, rising on crescendoing strings to a peak of pathos. lIot pitiable, but glorious. The 5 drifting guitars get slightly more atﬂllngd on the following ‘Spring- ;lleeled Jim’, caught up in snippets of
; sounds like Moz lyrics over Crowded I Ilouse melody, which in these . v. i circumstances isa top combination. a ‘ ‘lifeguard Sleeping, Girl Drowning’ has P i woodwind, the swell of the surf, and
, whispered poetry. ‘Vauxhall And I’ is
g the Morrissey album for non-Morrissey Q fans, because for once he sounds
3 dialogue from (no doubt) one of Morrissey’s darling urchin thrillers from the black and white 505.
Still don’t get the single — the title and tone are Morrissey-by-numbers - and ‘Billy Budd’ just sounds like one
i of the Smiths’ better b-sides. The
; ‘pendulous’ songs are the best, just
drifting and hanging and drawing you
in, like ‘llold On To Your Friends’, ,
wherein the admission of vulnerability ,5?
strikes a chord. ‘I Am llated For living’
humble. (Craig McLean) i
NINE INCH NAILS
The Downward Spiral (Island)
Iley, listen up everyone. Trent Ileznor has things to say; he wants to unburden himself of the bad karma clogging up his scummy existence. To wit - the human race is on the last lap. llh-huh. llow tell us something we don’t know, Trent.
This isn’t even fresh ground for line Inch Ilalls. Anyone who laid bets that Ileznor would be heard stealthily intoning words like ‘I want to fuck you like an animal . . . you get me closer to Cod’ someplace on a future opus can clean up at the bookies now. Credit where It’s due though - he does desist until track five, ‘Closer’.
Not that there’s anything wrong with playing the post-industrial prophet when other bands’ manifestos consist mainly of extolling the virtues of amphetamines. But Ileznor’s vocabulary is trite, especially in the industrial techno-rock field. In ‘lleresy’, he sees himself standing in the parched wilderness, screeching ‘Your god Is dead and no one cares/ll there is a hell I will see you there’, where others see him starring in a Mad Max cartoon apocalypse.
The likes of lllck Cave play the end- of-the-mlllennlum blues with more soul and ambivalence. lline Inch llails don’t modulate the cyberpunk tension
enough, and how do you expect
anyone to listen to you when you’re repeatedly stamping on their face? (Fiona Shepherd)
28 The List 25 March—7 April 1994