Fiona Shepherd can hardly contain herself at the prospect ot this lortnight’s rocktastic releases . . .

One of Teenage Fanclub‘s great qualities is their don't-give-a-shit attitude. Likewise with Eugenius. So when they read that Nomian and Eugene‘s seasonal collaboration. the Reg Presley number ‘Summertime‘ (Fire) recorded using the moniker Famous Monsters is a pile of novelty glam silliness it‘s comforting to know they won‘t give a shit.

As pristine as Famous Monsters are dog-eared is the debut ‘Breaking Waves‘ HP from The Knot Garden. Its polite strummings are precisely the trigger for me to switch off but if you find passion in the likes of Martin Stephenson and Gary Clark this will be your glass of Chardonnay.

As unapologetic as The Knot Garden are polite is the latest release from Urusei Yatsura. a band who are wasting no time building up a healthy catalogue of vinyl releases. 'Siamese’ is simple. straight to the point and then on through the crash barriers and comes courtesy of London‘s Che Records. a label taking a healthy interest in things musical. Glaswegian and orbiting round The 13th Note pub.

As swinging as Urusei Yatsura are punching is Capone And The Bullets‘ ‘Dance The Blues Away‘ (Maximum Stun Records). an evocative live ska four-tracker with the welcome endorsement of Buster Bloodvessel. Fun for all the family.

As robust as Capone And The Bullets are rubber-limbed is the new ‘Terrorise' EP (Friedfly Records) from Glaswegian nouveau rockers Auntie Rose who could give Gun a run for their money. or compete with young. lofty rockers like Reef and Moist.

As instinctive as Auntie Rose are studied is The Oelgados‘ second release ‘Lazarwalker‘ (Radar Records/Chemikal Underground) which sounds assured in a hell- for-leather indie onslaughi kind of way.

As laid-back as The Delgados are fired-up is what Livingston expatriate. ex-Silverfish vocalist Lesley Rankine is up to these days. Ruby is ranting Rankine. some computers and a producer

and ‘Parafi'in' (Creation) is hypnotic trance-pop in seven remix flavours.


Zeitgeist (China Records)

The first thing you think is: Zeitgeist? Irony or what? The next thing you think is: The Levellers and irony aren’t even on speaking terms. They’re still honest, jobbing musicians thumping their tubs and mounting their soapboxes guilelessly in the grand folk tradition, while all around them their peers are making arch statements and procuring their sound from a highly self-conscious smattering of classic pop influences, and defining the zeitgeist. The Levellers, meanwhile, haven’t so much missed the bus, as not bothered to turn up at the stop. Well, good luck to

them. Their music is beyond fashion.

Their appeal is beyond ; comprehension.

Kicking off with their driving Rational lottery satire, ‘llope Street’, things go rapidly downhill. There are moments of playful acoustic jamming like ‘Just The One’, a tribute to the famous last words of many an apprentice alcoholic, but the downside comes on ‘4am’, an unremarkable boorish beer bop.

Too many tracks fall into overly ponderous territory and you find yourself holding out for the moments when it sounds like they still have some fire in their belly, like ‘Leave This Town’, a rousing attempt to address the wanderlust and claustrophobia of small town life. Fans should dig it but there will be few new converts on the campaign trail. (Fiona Shepherd) |



; Southpaw Orammar(ROA Victor)

, Great to see the old RCA Victor logo ' on the sleeve, just like those old

i Bowie and Presley records.

i Morrissey’s eye for design details is ,9 unimpaired by the passing years, even i if Southpaw Grammar is largely bereft I of the tunes that made Your Arsenal

. m

i and Vauxhall & Ithe best albums he’d made since the demise of The Smiths. l Boorer, White and chums blast out

i the same splendid rumble they did on f the last album and tour - no

! complaints there; Moz’s hard-man i { affectations are small price to pay for

such muscular, intense playing - but the songs themselves generally lag behind. Spencer Cobrin’s two-and-a- hall-minute drum intro to ‘The

Operation’ is one of the most

exhilarating pieces of percussion on a

rock record in the last twenty years, but the ensuing song fails to measure

up. As we already know, ‘Oagenham

Oave’ is marvellous. Of the two ten-minute-plus epics that

; bookend the album, ‘The Teachers Are Afraid Of The Pupils’ is a genuinely

; menacing highlight, while ‘Southpaw’ ; is too flimsy to sustain itself over that : length. On the whole, not a high point, 1 but still showing signs of life that

were well submerged in real

disappointments like Viva Hate.

I (Alastair Mabbott)

ROBERT MITOHUM Calypso - Is Like 80 . . . (Rev-Ola)

‘All the girls is changin’ to chicks, all the fellows changin’ to cats.’ It sounds like one of Reeves and Mortimer’s skewed products, does Robert Mitchum’s calypso record, but no. Sometime in 1957, His Laconic Coolness sauntered into a Capitol studio with a bottle of rum in one hand and a five-year recording contract in the other, just in time to catch a ride on the calypso wave which briefly broke across the hepper daddies of America. The results of the sessions are now re-released by Creation’s revival subsidiary Rev-Ola, the same

people who in the past have brought you the musical works of Leonard

L llimoy and William Shatner. An , exercise in summer kitsch? Well, maybe - if it weren’t for the fact that

Mitchum’s legendary irony is well in place from the start, along with his

~ godawful cod-Jamaican accent. In the

words of someone who knows: ‘What a

big chancer.’ There is, however, one huge reason

for you to buy this record. As a bonus,

Rev-Ola have included Mitchum’s

: legendary rockabilly magnum opus ‘Thunder Road’, a bootleggin’, liquor-

swillin’, bangin’, twangin’ hot-rod

classic long hard to find. Listen to this i and think of drug busts, brawls,

booze and love and hate.

(Damien Love)





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contractual reasons).

At The Wigmore Ila/I (East West)

Julian Joseph’s four-concert series at the Wigmore Hall in London last year broke new ground in several directions, bringing jazz to that venerable classical recital hall (a trick be repeated at this year’s Proms), and the pianist together with four new collaborators, three oi whom are featured here (Andy Sheppard is the missing man, presumably for

Joseph has quietly established himself as the most inventive and imaginative of the new pianists on the London scene. He has a lovely touch at

the keyboard, and navigates a distinctly unclichéd route through the harmonic structures of the tunes he plays which is heard most explicitly on his solo medley, but is evident throughout the set.

There are no drums, leading to a lovely, crystalline, uncluttered sound on three trio selections each with clarinetist Eddie Daniels and saxophonist Johnny Griffin (including a deliciously slinking reading of Oriff’s classic ‘The Cat’), all featuring Alec Oankworth’s usual superb acoustic bass work, and a fascinating piano duet with Jason Rebello on llerbie Hancock’s ‘Maiden Voyage’, which also serves to emphasise how much of

; a loss Rebello’s concentration on soft-

focus funk has been to jazz. llighly recommended. (Kenny Mathieson)

88 The List 25 Aug-7 Sept 1995