MUSIC LIVE REVIEWS
Theatre Royal. 7 October. It’s a sombre court over which Elizabeth 1 holds sway in Scottish Opera's production of Donizetti’s Mary Stuart. Director and designer Stefanos Lazaridis's stark sets. aided and abetted by Davy Cunningham's lighting and Sue Willmington‘s monochrome costumes. underline the story's sense ofinevitable tragedy from the first notes.
This abstract visual approach widens out as the central dilemmas of the Scottish and English queens take a physical presence on stage. The playful innocence oftheir past floats around them in the shape of two shadowing girls. while the opposing arguments for mercy and execution are embodied in court counsellors Talbot (an imposing David Ellis) and Cecil (Stafford Dean). .
As Elizabeth. Japanese soprano Michie Nakamaru’sjerky movements convey the turmoil of a woman in love who is trapped by the pressures of religion and politics, while Australia’s Yvonne Kenny comes close to rivalling her compatriot Joan Sutherland with the composed dignity of Mary. The overall air of oppression may often be at odds with the coloratura swirls and bouncing melodies that are Donizetti‘s trademark, but if the music is at times pleasantly light. the brilliance of the staging adds a little more depth. (Alan Morrison)
There is one more perjomtance of ‘Mary Stuart' at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow on Tue 8. It moves to Edinburgh Festival Theatre on 2, 6 and 9 Dec.
6 Bottles of
Tom Moore Whiskey! SEE PAGE 96
Barrowland, Glasgow, 22 Oct. ‘l’ve decided to take my work back underground, to stop it falling into the wrong hands . . .’ And so, one of 1994’s most exciting albums, ‘Music For The Jilted Generation’, begins with its only blip, a shrewd spoken sample delineating its snob agenda. By implication, The Prodigy are into a real ‘them and us’ scenario. The possessive article in the title ‘Their Law’ is a pointed declaration of division, but within the unwieldy dance fraternity, Liam Howlett wants to erect more barricades, turning his nose up at the commercial rave music his group were initially known for.
Musically, it’s been a successful reinvention. Despite the frustrating fact that, live, The Prodigy’s music doesn’t sound as extreme as it does on record, even with the benefit of a ginormous PA, the hectic tangle of beats and samples is an undiluted thrill. But as for the rather dubious elitism that goes along with the desire for a certain cred appeal . . . it’s not working, Liam. Thankfully.
First off, the promoters have made this an all-ages show and the
A intelligent techno disciples Liam, just
1 anticipated school disco vibe is tempered by sightings of the occasional fleet-footed vet cutting a rug round the margins of the hall. Also, there really does seem to be a veritable cross-section of partygoers. So if you’re looking for an audience of
forget it mate. Your music makes too universal an appeal to the feet for
. that. So you’re stuck with mass appreciation.
It’s not that The Prodigy are off the wall. In fact, their show involves nothing that you couldn’t have predicted. Liam keeps a low profile in the recesses of the Mad Max set and mad dancer Keith looks like one of the zombies from ‘Night Of The Living Dead’, given a reanimating charge to his body.
What else do you need to know? They did ‘Ho Good (Start The Dance)’, ‘Dne Love’, ‘Poison’, ‘Voodoo People’, all pretty much the same — energised, hook-laden, frenetic techno. But this music’s not for pontificating over. Honestly, you just had to be there. (Fiona Shepherd)
COCO AND THE BEAN/SUGA BULLIT
La Belle Angele, Edinburgh, 28 Oct. Billed as a head-to-head, Suga Bullit take on Coco And The Bean to celebrate Big Beat’s first birthday at La Belle Angele. The club is aptly named and the bass bins are already working overtime as the DJs jazz up the expectant crowd with a hip-hop friendly selection.
By the time Suga Bullit hit the stage, expectancy levels have burst. It’s a while since they have been out live and the supporters club is out in force. No problem then, with programmer and DJ Sean’s phat hip-hop beats on ‘Fat Buby’. Forget the niceties of the ‘Unrefined' album, this is a full-on rap attack without the annoying exhortations that detract from so many US bands’ live sets. The Edinburgh massive is grooving and needs no further encouragement. A pity, then, that lzzie’s vocals are under-utilised and get lost in the mix.
Her delicate voice is the perfect counterpoint to Fazz’s aggressive vocals and Dean’s strangely American rap. If the Bullit’s beats are blistering, Coco And The Bean’s are positively stentorian. But slow. Way, way slow. Like a juggernaut grinding down the gears on a major incline. At 40 bpm and dropping, it’s a massive attack by any account, sly and grooving as Boseanne’s vocals slink out on the aptly named ‘Drifting’. With a couple of live sets on Radio Scotland behind them, this was the Bean’s first on- stage set, but you wouldn’t have known. Lex’s live double bass is jacked up to a sternum-wobbling volume, underpinned by a big grinding breakbeat, slow and sensuous, to match the soul-drenched sexuality of the vocal line.
In a gig of two halves, the Bullits and the Beans are chalk and cheese. For unpretentious hip-hop rap, Suga Bullit certainly got the feet moving, but to my mind, the Bean’s jazz-infused intensity takes the night. (Thom
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Concerts listed are those at major venues, for which tickets are on public sale at time of going to press.
I GLASGOW BARROWLAND (226 4679) The Almighty, 18 Nov; Shane McGowan. 19 Nov; Beastie Boys. 20 Nov; Paul Weller. 30 Nov: Oasis._7 Dec; Primal Scream. 9-10 Dec; The Cult. 13 Dec; Suede. 15 Dec; Saw Doctors. 16 Dec. I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511) David Essex. 22 Nov; Legendary 'Ladies of Soul. 1 Dec; Bootleg. Beatles. 12 Dec; Solid Silver 70s. 15 Feb. I GLASGOW OLD FRUITMARKET (227 551 1) Big New Year Bash. 29—31 Dec. I GLASGOW SECC (248 9999) Joe Cocker. 3 Dec; Cliff Richard. 4—6 Dec; Status Quo. 7 Dec; Gary Glitter. 8 Dec; Dina Carroll. 10 Dec; M People. 12 Dec; Eric Clapton. 15 Feb. I EDINBURGH FESTIVAL THEATRE (529 6000) Rocky Horror Show. 22—26 Nov; The Cranberries, 8 Jan. I EDINBURGH MURRAYFIELD (557 6969) REM, 27 Jul. I EDINBURGH QUEEN’S HALL (668 2019) Indigo Girls. 18 Nov; Nick Lowe. 4 Dec; Carter USM. 9 Dec; Roachford. 14 Dec. I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) Eternal. 30 Nov; Legendary Ladies of Soul. 3 Dec; Bootleg Beatles. 13 Dec.
I EDINBURGH OUEEN’S HALL (668 2019) Tam White‘s Eco-Drive Band. Cancelled; Carol Kidd Trio. 1 Dec; Craig McMurdo. 16 Dec; Michel Petrucciani. 20 Jan; Humphrey Lyttelton. 3 Feb; Eberhard Weber. 10 Feb; Courtney Pine. 17 Feb; Suzanne Bonnar. 24 Feb; Trilok Gurtu. 3 Mar; Wayne Krantz. 10 Mar. I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) Chris Barber. 19 Dec.
I GLASGOW CITY HALL (227 551 l) Tam White‘s Eco-Drive Band. Cancelled; Carol Kidd Trio. 1 Dec; Russell Cowieson Quintet. 4 Dec; Nigel Clark Quintet. 10 Dec; Michel Petrucciani. 21 Jan; EH 15, 22 Jan; Humphrey Lyttelton. 4 Feb; Eberhard Weber. 9 Feb; Courtney Pine. 16 Feb; Fraser Spiers. 19 Feb; Suzanne Bonar. 25 Feb.
I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 551 1) Terry Lightfoot. 22 Nov; Glenn Miller Orch, 24 Nov.
I GLASGOW RSAMD (332 5057) Trilok Gurtu. 4 Mar.
I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511) Celtic Connections. 5-22 Jan. I EDINBURGH OUEEN’S HALL (668 2019) Apu, 19 Nov; Wolfstone. 27 Nov; Christmas with the Clarsach. 18 Dec.
I GLASGOW CITY HALL (227 5511) BBC SSO. 26 Jan. 23 Feb. 9 Mar, 6 Apr. I GLASGOW CONCERT HALL (227 5511) Borromeo Qrt. 18 Nov; Emma Johnson. 6 Dec; Cancer Fund Concerts. 10. 16 Dec: Messiah. 11 Dec; Phoenix Choir. 13—14 Dec; BBC SSO. 20 Dec; John Williams. 24 Jan; Novosibirsk Philharmonic. 12 Feb; Leif ()ve Andsnes. 22 Feb; Maria Ewing. 7 Mar: Stuttgart Philharmonic. 28 Mar; Joshua Bell. 2 Apr; Melos Ensemble, 4 May; lvo Pogorelich. 2 Jun; Cecilia Bartoli. 7 Jun; Ravi Shankar. 2 Jul; Jessye Norman. 6 Jul.
I GLASGOW RSAMD (332 5057) Elena Shishko. 18 Nov; Curlew River, 24—25 Nov; Academy CO. 26 Nov; Paragon Ensemble. 27 Nov. 29 Jan. 26 Feb; Wind ()rchestra. 1 Dec; Glasgow CO. 4 Dec; Michael Collins. 9 Dec; Carol Concert. 13—14 Dec; Peter Seivewright. 16 Dec; BTSE. 16 Dec; Junior Concerts. 17 Dec: Christmas Concert. 19 Dec.
I GLASGOW TRAMWAY (227 5511) RSNQ. 27 Nov.
I EDINBURGH FESTIVAL THEATRE (529 6000) Vienna Boys Choir. 27 Nov; Scottish Opera. 29 Nov—l0 Dec; Messiah. 11 Dec.
I EDINBURGH QUEEN’S HALL (668 2019) Chamber Group of Scotland. 21 Nov; The Mega Concert. 22 Nov; Murray lVlclachlan. 23 Nov; RSAMD Chamber ()rch. 24 Nov; ESO. 26 Nov; Lyell Cresswell Birthday Concert. 30 Nov; Mitsuko Uchida. 5 Dec; Hebrides Ensemble. 6 Dec; Gina McCormack. 7 Dec; Concert Opera. 10 Dec; Meadows CO, 11 Dec; St Mary’s Choir. 13 Dec; BTSE. 15 Dec; Cappella Nova. 17 Dec; Jubilo. 18 Dec; Messiah. 21 Dec; Contemporary Violin, l 1 Jan; Brindisi Quartet. 23 Jan; Tommy Smith and Murray McLachlan. 4 Feb; ECAT Concert. 6 Feb; Balanescu Quartet. 17 Feb; BTSE. 23 Feb; Vellinger Quartet. 13 Mar; BTSE, 20 Apr.
I EDINBURGH USHER HALL (228 1155) St Margaret‘s School, 5 Dec; Frederica von Stade. 14 Dec; George Heriot’s School. 20 Dec; Malcolm Sargeant Cancer Fund Concert. 21 Dec; ERCU Messiah. 2 Jan; ERCU. 13 May.
3B The List 4—17 November 1994