Making Music Happen



Muse Sick ll llour Mess Age (Def Jam/Island)

To their first LP, we yelled ‘What on earth?’ With their second, our faith was bolstered. Their third got mad creative and left some in the dark. Others swore that after one listen they saw a Black hand in Blake’s ‘The Ancient Df Days’. But by their fourth, Chuck D’s 98 Chevrolet was definitely struggling in the quicksands of global expectation. The fifth was simply out of line. And so to the sixth. Though many have lost faith, most have been waiting patiently for the prophet and

jester to come correct. I was sure they would, I was sure.

In an interview with ‘ltepresent’, Chuck D lambasted those who judge too quickly, but after one listen I don’t want to hear this again. Damn, because we need the blade of his tongue to knife the white supremacy that still squats in our hearts, but a blade without the handle of real power-beats will pierce nothing. Perhaps PE need to forget about their global audience and answer to the Bronx, Brooklyn, the underground. Only thus does hip hop keep on the straight and narrow.

Meanwhile, wait for the 12in remixes and keep faith. (Ewan Allinson)


floats those words.

Corgeous Ceorge (Setanta)

As the increasingly frazzled Julian Cope careers off the rails to join Monissey on the s|agheap, it’s good to Heaven’ and ‘Subsidence’ Wthh can” know that the sly, caustic lyric is still 3 bear the tragi-comic baritone hallmark safe in the hands of their I contemporary, Edwyn Collins, and it’s | W979 theY "0‘ “filter” in EdwYn’Si

an absolute joy to partake of the rich, i finest adenoidal tones. And there’s the atmospheric backing on which he

l Elsewhere there’s a Spectorish strain to ‘A Girl Like You’ and ‘If You Could Love Me’ is infused equally with the spirit of Bacharach and David and

I swinging 60s beatpop production

' numbers. There’s the acoustic, countryish laments of ‘llorth 0f

. of Lee Hazlewood or Leonard Cohen

? glories of ‘Dut Of This World’ and ‘The f Campaign For Real Bock’, which may

or may not be a witty snipe at The

Levellers and Stone Temple Pilots. ‘Corgeous Ceorge’ is a feast of

, bygone pop sounds - a trait which

hasn’t stopped Blur’s ‘Parklife’ from

entering the nation’s record

collections. (Fiona Shepherd)

You can hear the florid effects of fraternlsing with Setanta labelmates The Divine Comedy, and ‘Low Expectations’ and ‘You Got It All’ readily sport the arched-brow persona favoured by other Lord Fauntleroys like The Auteurs’ Luke llaines.


Everybody’s Cot Dne (Fauve/llhythm King)

‘ECD’ goes the acronym, and Echobelly should be justifiably self-obsessed. ln ‘Everybody’s Cot Dne’ the band have made a full-on, full-frontal pop record that brooks no discussion: these lyrics and these tunes are just right, right? Sonya Aurora-Madan manages to discuss her colour, patriarchy, drugs and ill-advised loves in a bullish, spare, convincing voice. llo right-on flag-waving nor cause-carrying - when she sings about ‘half the population, one per cent of wealth’, about ‘glvlng her a gun’, about ‘me me me me me me’, she comes from the heart, not from the hype.

The hype hoopla, of course, is there to trip Echobelly up now. Three great singles in less than a year? llo way can they keep up that momentum. Then the opening pistolwhip of ‘Today Tomorrow Sometime llever’ immediately stakes its claim as single four. Dr should it be ‘Call Me llames’? By now, the easy references - and they’re more Blondie than Smiths, more Jam than Suede - have been trampled into the dirt. ‘Everybody’s Cot Dne’ has guts, grace and sheer rock ’n’ roll.

Already, they’re planning. The follow- up is to be produced by Steve Lllywhlte in February. True genius never rests on its laurels. (Craig McLean)


Izaaaanl Queen of

.: opera

Edinburgh may be

" basking ill a veritable

galaxy of stars this week. but it is in Glasgow that the great opera diva Montserrat Caballe gives a solo appearance with the

' Scottish Opera Orchestra

and conductor Jose Collado. Born in Barcelona in 1933. the magnificent Caballe is now 61 years old. yet her voice remains remarkable lll its power to thrill. A flawless technique. her infamous phrasing and true and intelligent musicianship all add up to make her one of the leading international sopranos of the second half of this century. both from her countless performances and over 80 recordings.

She became known to an even wider audience through her recording of Barcelona with the late Freddie Mercury. But behind all this starry stuff of fame is a fascinating history. It is hard to believe. for instance. that Caballe was singing for several years before her exceptional talents were recognised. It was in 1965. with a by all accounts stunning performance of Donizetti's Lllt‘l‘eZla Borgia in New York's Carnegie Hall that her reputation really took off. She may have been virtually unheard of in the USA up until then. but overnight Caballe became almost a household name. Invitations flooded in to perform at opera houses throughout the world after the historic New York debut: La Scala, The Met. Vienna Statsoper, Covent Garden. Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires. Glyndeboume. Verona . . . the list is endless. The roll call of conductors she has worked with is similarly

impressive: Abbado. Mtlti. Mehta. von Karajan.

Giulini. Davis. Ifyou can

possibly hear her in Glasgow. go.

Glasgow Royal Concert

Hall‘s current foray into opera does not end with

Caballe‘s evening of great

: operatic arias: on Friday 26. there’s a rare chance

to witness a semi-staged production of Wagner‘s Flying Dutchman with the RSNO and Walter Weller. (Carol Main)

Montserrat C aballe plays Glasgow Royal Concert

Hall on Fri 19.

The List l9 -2.3 August 1994 '5 I