1' In the Park, the Tennents Live Festival


DAVID BYRNE David Byrne (WEA) Funny how a man whose most prominent publlc characteristic is a nervy diffidence can look and sound so exceptionally )oyous when he’s making music, but David Dyme is, as others have noted in the past, a funny chap. And like the man himself, ‘David Dyme’ is chock-full of quizzical meditations and self-deflating pronouncements of the absurd kind. Paul Simon could learn a thing or two here. In the comparatively small- scale, intimate setting of his current

. part of his musical landscape. The one

embraced so wholeheartedly with ‘llel Momo’ (when he fronted a full-tilt South American big band) have been so fully absorbed and Integrated into his music that they’ve lust become a

exception to the rule is the annoying ‘You And Eye’, on which he spreads his ethnic influences more than a smldgeon too thickly. in the main, though, this is fine stuff with some dizzyineg exuberant songs. Dyrne has the humility to understand that he doesn’t automatically deserve our attention. lle’s here to entertain us. So even his lndulgences - and there are a few here are ultimately engaging.


line-up, The Latinisms that Byrne (“33‘3" "abbot" _ . choose as the soundtracks to their { white wine and projected earnings parties; music for people who don’t SEAL like music. Seal (ZTT/Warners) Like an artist who doesn’t know when

llever, ever )udge by a cover. First glance here, and you’re thinking, 3 Seal’s made the smartest move ever ' and become the Silver Surfer. Mention of deml-gods Wendy and lisa in the credits heighten the anticipation and you’re all set for some cosmos- strafing astro-funk pop . . . but no! All this shorn nudity is instead attempting to convey that we’re getting the serious, inner-self stuff here; the real Seal deal.

So what does this entail? Well, to be frank, the kind of bland, coffee-table music young people in evil suits

the painting’s complete, any promising song sketches are completely obliterated by layers of over- production, and topped off with lyrics painful and embarrassing, not due to their honesty but their trite clumsiness.

From this featureless mass, it’s hard

: A Bose’ deserves special mention for ' the ‘llobin Df Sherwood’ flourishes

which bring so vividly to mind

; memories of the dwarves’ dance in ‘Splnal Tap’. Save your money. Buy some shampoo. (Damien Love)


lDleDll lifefonns (Virgin)

physics class. ‘lifefonns’ is undoubtedly astonishing, in the way that only a 90-minute-plus sonic re- creation of a space lab, machine tool factory and your common or garden tropical rainforest can be. As globe-

The sleeve art is sumptuous, lloger Dean meets Latin-American folk art at a convention of fractal fantaslsts. The accompanying manifesto comes on rainbow-hued plastic sheet. ‘Explorations into the great unknowns are discredited,’ it expounds, ‘only relevant in the most escapist sense for a world which cannot cope with the complexity, chaos and strangeness of here and now.’

That’s that cleared up, then: Future Sound Of London are pretentious eggheads, the ambient version of the geek who always came top in your

trotting, cosmos-trekking, couch- potatoing background music goes, ‘Lifefonns’ takes some beating.

But as for any great neurological/ phsychological/metaphsyclal/ecologic al import - well, that’s lost the huffing and puffing of elitist dance bofflns seeking to foist some brave-new-world import onto their distended collection of random sounds. As with The Drb’s latest, exploring the further reaches of the ambient ether is not too dissimilar from poking about in the hidden crevices of your own belly-button. (Craig McLean)

we -..-‘-.:a. 31".,

‘- THE SPIN oocrons

Turn It Upside Down (Epic)

A triumph of anti-style over content. With their second album proper, The Spin Doctors are the same as they ever were - organic, natural, easy - only more so. ‘Turn It Upside Down’ is a free-flowing, on-runnlng product of over 500 shows touting a debut album

But if you suspected that ‘Pocket Full Of Kryptonlte’ was two great singles and a cast of supporting D-sldes, you’ll be pleased with ‘Turn it Upside Down’: it’s exactly the same.

With little sense of direction or forward motion, Spin Doctors’ songs

that eventually sold six million copies.

! chug on, playing to the galleries full of fans of ‘real music’ and old-fashioned rock ethics (le songs don’t have to be any good, just long, vague and full of look-mum-no-hands jamming). ‘CIeopatra’s Cat’ is the first single and utterly ridiculous, an overstretched folly that seems to exist purely to serve notice that Chris Barron knows his lioman and Greek classlclsm.

Elsewhere, the bass grooves disappear into the sunset, taking the melodies with them. Only the knockabout exuberance of “You Let Your Heart So Too Fast’ and ‘Mary Jane’ offer anything that rises above the morass of dull proficiency. Woke up this momlng, got me them dodgy- codgers-puntlng-anaemlc-blues blues. (Craig McLean)


Darnlen love sorts through the new releases.

'1 Can‘t Imagine The World Without Me' (Fauve) sees Echobelly doing the clever thing and starting off with a whistle. Mad riffing leads to a 60s dip in underwater guitars and trumpets. allowing breath recovery for the

quick sprint to the sudden-


death ending. itchy. incessant whispering is always a good start too,

5 especially when backed up by Public Enemy

kung-fu kicking to the Shaft theme. Coupled with a lyric free from excessive Americanisms dealing with black British experience and. dealing death to BNP scum. it looks like GliltSllDt's

‘Colourcode' (Vinyl

Solution) is one of life‘s

essentials. As indeed is

'Numb' (Go!Beat). the

debut from Portishead. A

to single out any track, but ‘Kiss From .

kind of older. more sussed ‘Dub Be Good To Me'. fending offchcesy

advances in a lonely nm'r t hell, live radically ; different takes serve

notice that the Portishead's creative well runneth over.

In a scuzzier part of

, town lurk fucked-up girls with attitude. three-minute

songs and guitars capable of slicing through

concrete. ‘Seether'l‘All

Hail Me' (Scared Hitless) comprise the first blast from Veruca Salt. the former all buzzsaw harmony about swelling anger. the latter a nasty grind with background

yells about. . . I‘m not sure i want to know,

T in the Park, July 30th and 31st at Strathclyde Park

really. Sheer laziness to mention The Breeders here. so i won‘t bother. From a similar neighbourhood. but with a more wistful slant. come iale. ‘14 08 93‘ (Sub Pop) finds elements of the Valentines, Belly and a

' sleepy Sonic Youth

cropping up across both ‘Not Happy‘ and love Letter'. which can't be bad.

Sounding as though they‘ve got cleaner hair, lvy contribute the mini- album ‘Later‘ (Seed). which is gorgeous, sun- bleached stuff. singer Dominique reminiscent of Nico spinning sugar- coated in heaven. Back on earth, ‘Ella Gonda Mu’ (Nation) by llzma is hardcore transglobal dubtrance chillout music. sort of. A frequently pleasant place to put your head. though beware dark eastern European undercurrents which may induce nightmares in the more susceptible.

The List l7—30 June 1994 33