RECORD REVIEWS MUSIC
I Teenage Fanclub: Deep Fried Fanclub (Fire) To kill time until their next album proper in May. The Fannies release this odds- and-ends compilation of A-sides. B-sides and tracks previously unavailable on long- player. It's essential for the completist. ofcourse. but that doesn‘t make it any less shatneful an exercise in barrel- scraping. Deep Fried Funelnb shows them in their poorest light. and stands as a warning for any band that if they're going to toss off a cursory jam as a B-side then someday it‘ll come back to haunt them. The best tracks are the sublime ‘Everything Flows’ and ‘God Knows It's True'. with ‘So Far Gone' and their ramshackle version of ‘The Ballad OfJohn And Yoko‘ trailing behind. Best not to mention the others. With one poor contractual obligation album. The King. already under their belts. Deep Fried Funcltd)
is a record the Teenage Fanclub legacy could do without. (Alastair
M abbott )
I Band Oi Susans: Wired For Sound (Blast First) It may be just a plank of
wood with six strings on it
to you. but Band Of Susans live for the sounds they can coax out of their axes. ()pen strings that
.drone on an epic scale.
overtones of crystalline brittleness and lucidity. the kind of intensity that can only be achieved by turning an amp up to II . . . in these terms. Band ()f Susans are way past Sonic Youth and catching up on the massed-guitar orchestras of fellow New Yorkers Glenn Branca and Rhys Chatham. Half of this two-CI) set (covering 1986—93) is given over to instrumentals. Quite why they bother with lyrics at all is debatable given that
their vocals are swallowed
up in dense. mantra-like riffs invariably over- reliant on the ‘dirge' pedal. Sonically and texturally. this is a chronicle of an impressive seven-year mission. But don't go looking for tunes you can whistle in the bath. (Alastair Mabbott) I Kim Fowley: Outrageous/Good Clean Fun (Rev-Ola Who says they do everything better in America? Probably anyone who‘s ever compared Jonathan King to his US counterpart Kim Fowley. Producer. impresario. specialist in novelty singles. Fowley has the added advantage of being completely barking into the bargain. Creation Records understand his personal
brand of madness. which is why their reissue arm Rev-Ola has slapped two vintage Fowley albums on one CD. Draw lines between Arthur Brown. Captain Beefhean and early Mothers and somewhere you‘ll stumble across the utterly deranged and apparently live Outrageous. Nominally divided into twelve tracks. it‘s tnore of an extended freak-out. 'T/IL’ s/tm‘I-lluil't'd people of.»’lmerieu are truly the t1/f(’ll.\' ()fotll' sort-('1): ' being one of the more intelligible snatches of his acid-drenched babblings. (food ('leun l’un lampoons the worst excesses of Haight Ashbury nonsense with plenty of bizarre studio experiments and spoof phone calls to fill it out. (Alastair Mabbott)
I John Lee Hooker: Chill Out (Virgin) The seductive
title track. with John Lee‘s
lean. sinuous vocal supported by Carlos Santana's spacey guitar. sets the tone fora laid back set which won't go down as vintage J.I..H.. but which has its share of highpoints. It has a thrown-together feel which the slick packaging can't disguise — some of the tracks (like ‘Chill Out itself and ‘Serves Me Right To Suffer" with Van Morrison) are unissued cuts from earlier sessions. and he re-visits the likes of ‘One Scotch. ()ne Bourbon. One Beet" yet again. The solo and duo tracks are great. though. and that unique voice can still send a shiver straight down the spine. (Kenny I‘vlathieson)
I Henry Cowell: Hymn and Fugueing Tune (Koch); Piano Music (Smithsonian) Cowell remains less familiar than the likes of Ives or Copland. but he is every bit as deserving of attention. and every bit as individual a creator in a distinctly American idiom. The four works for chamber orchestra on the Koch disc make an ideal introduction to his music. being at once highly accessible and marked with his own idiosyncratic touch. The folk derivations running through them are echoed even more strongly in the fascinating and more experimental piano music. played by the composer himself. Recommended. I Beethoven: The Creatures oi Prometheus (Teldec) Following their acclaimed symphonic cycle. Harnoncourt and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe turn their hands to
a much rarer beast in the shape of the complete music for this ballet. which is usually heard only in overture form. While not as consistently realised as the great symphonies and concertos. it is far from being a minor work. and receives a suitably concentrated. powerful performance.
I Berg: Songs (Sony) The sheer beauty and opulence ofJessye Norman's voice could have worked against her in this repertoire. which demands operatic expansiveness but also nimble control and range. As it turns out. though. she is in her eletnent throughout. both in the orchestral cycles Seven Early Songs and .‘I/Ienberg Songs (with Boulez and the LSO) and a selection of Lieder with pianist Ann Schein. Great singing on still undervalued songs.
I Schubert: Lieder (Teldec) More great singing from an American soprano. this time the delightful Barbara
Bonney. in a composer who could hardly be more central to the Lieder tradition. Her voice has a very pleasing. airy freshness. and her technical control of breath and diction is well nigh unimpeachable throughout a well-chosen and highly expressive recital. which includes a number of Goethe settings alongside staples like ‘Die Forelle' or ‘Gretchen am Spinnrade'.
I Heich: Tehillim (Elektra Nonesuch) This label has become something of a focus for the original tninimalists. and their excellent recent disc of John Adams's Churn/2e1- Coltt'el‘lo is now followed by a new recording of Steve Reich's first large scale. conventionally sung vocal composition. 'l'elzi/lim. lt dates from 1981 and his transition into a more expansive style of writing. has held tip pretty well. although the later T/tree Movements for Ore/term: is less impressive. (Kenny Mathieson)
GLASGOW THE PLAZA
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The List l0-23 Mar IWS 39