Alastair Mabbott pulls his crackers.

‘That‘s not music, that's just noise!’ How many times has one of your favourites suffered that insult? Too many, no doubt, but in the case of ‘lnk Parasite', a split single by Hailstorm and Armanen on the Dunfermline-based Pylon label. it’s actually true. Of course, you could just achieve the same effect. at much less cost, by lowering your needle on to sandpaper. a la Aphex Twin. And for no money at all you could have a copy of a free four-song 7in by Danl Of The lleplicants. ‘So Far Spitfire' (d/S trigg). lt‘s


flu Yorican Saul Talkin’ loud

louie Vega and Kenny ‘llope’ Gonzalez (aka the Masters At Work) have produced an absolute masterpiece. Their debut album confirms the early promise they revealed when they unleashed the stunning ‘ilervous Track’ in 1994. That one record - with its jazz, hip hop, Latin and house elements altered many people’s perception of what ‘dance’ music was all about.

Two years on and MAW are clearly ! light years ahead of their peers. The

soul or house, it explores each genre to the max. So Instead of finding an insipid jazz-house fusion for example, what you get is straight, freestyle jazz. Check ‘Shoshana’ for a real Latin jazz experience.

Elsewhere, Jocelyn Brown guests on one of the most powerful vocal tracks you’re ever likely to hear. ‘lt’s Alright, I Feel It’ sees Brown exaltlng the sheer power of music to lift the spirit while Tito Puente provides the percussion. it’s so strong it verges on gospel, but with a house flavour.

George Benson adds soul to another jazz-tinged number, ‘You Can Do lt’, while the legendary iioy Ayers pops up on ‘Sweet Tears’ and ‘lloy’s Scat’.

Truly an outstanding collection of

music. (Jim Byers) _ a

I album doesn’t just dip into jazz, rap,

\ m

contribute the most instantly memorable song, ‘Amateur Cops’, and

idiosyncratic, mannere: VARIOUS their three tracks mark them out as $33gfffgg‘n‘hgufrggggp 3, Boats Against The Current (Hedonist worthy of future investigation. The Productions) lleptune Allstars - interesting, but so

ten times the price. Edinburgh’s Pilotcan could pass themselves off as Americans on 'Five Minutes On A Tuesday Night’ (Rock Action). as they sound a bit like Dinosaur Jnr snuffling around some of their past glon'es. it does thejob. though. in its own slack way. But at least there’s one problem Pilotcan don‘t have to contend with, and that‘s how to make bombastic rock without it coming across as plodding stodge. The Manics understand. But

This compilation acts as an emotional Paic'lf that a PaSSiIIQ hiPPV Milli" farewell from an Edinburgh-based attempt t0 W88! them by Mistake - record company most of us have never give W31 ‘0 i0"? Slices 0' “Willie heard of, so are, frankly, unlikely to Walling lyrical dOiflg his ill" (almost) miss, us puma" (an): is the (cast medieval thing. No completist will decipherable track listing known to want to be without them. Life With man .. keep a pen and papal hand, so Nixon and Hiccup boast the 0' you nave! have (o "'3' to again - reflective, literate sonng'ltel'S but fledonlst must have had many seem to be to Hedonist’s particular vim.” too, (1 u", so'ecflons an taste. And as if to underscore the anything to go by. Boats Against The diVe'SiW 0' “'9 Pioiect. Uflion Current is equivalent to tive-and-a- “lifeless found 0" Wiih a couple 0' half EPs from a diverse package of conifaSiiflil dancev melts. ‘I New? bands, lireamt’ being a particular corker.

Peace campaigners Coping Saw (Alastail Mam")

Three Colours lied haven‘t a clue, and their ‘Nuclear Holiday‘ (Creation) is a prime example of a rancid genre.What is going on in Alan McGee’s head?

It’s Christmas, so in the frenetic days ahead. you‘ll need moments to find a quiet comer for yourself and chill out to something mellow. Our recommendation is ‘Leavin’ by The Tony lllch Project. who have been the big swingin’ dick in the US Top 40 for most of the year. it’s smooth and addictive, augmented on the remix by a very cool guitar sample from Roy Ayers’ ‘Daylight’. Mr Jack's ‘Wiggly World’


Adventures In Stereo (Creeping Bent) Before you allow the name to conjure up boftin images of stereophonic test recordings, llob Crainer’s BBC Sound Workshop, and the unearthing of early experiments in electronic music for inclusion on kitsch easy-listening compilations, let it be said that Adventures in Stereo may not be sophisticated in their recording techniques but neither do they come across like a lo-fi Aphex Twin. Adventures In Stereo are warm, featherlight, cuddly and beatastlc. They fit eighteen songs into just over half an hour, which in these days of two-hour Smashing Pumpkins albums is a fleeting delight. They have also [rifle the first album of the spring,

m_l which will be Wha hot water bottle

__ Christmas gift. (Fiona Shepherd)

and a fragrant meadow in the undoubtedly perishing water we have ahead of us this year.

This debut is basically the material from Adventures In Stereo’s two 7in EPs to date plus some extra tracks which sound like they were captured on cassette in that nanosecond between candyfloss hitting the tongue and evaporating to a sugary tang. If the name is still a mystery to you that’s probably because .llm Beattie and Judith Boyle had enough of hype in their last band Spirea X who, in turn, aroused interest because of Beattie’s role as erstwhile Primal Scream songwriter. flow the duo are ingenuous hermits recalling the sweetest sounds of the 60s. Forget the llonco Buttoneer - this is the perfect

(Extravaganza) is the very opposite. a hyperactive house stomper that, if the fates turn against us, could be ubiquitous at

create them in a computer’. And that goes for movie stars and just about everything else as well.


knees-ups over the festive The technology at Willi! here is a Eggsgenfiggsgt mam Men With Broken lfearts(Curb/llit) software package developed by "Mm-i has‘ A Christmas mm “notations or the wmlams producer Chuck lloward and his team,

which has enabled them to isolate flank Snr’s vocal lines from his old acetate-based recordings, made before multl-track tape recording. Clean as a whistle, they become the basis for modern digital standard studio recordings in which the three llanks share lead vocals on a selection of pristine new versions of llank Snr’s songs (plus a couple of

ascendency get together to cut an album. llmm, yeah, but didn’t ol’ llank Snr die in 1953? So llank .inr and his son, flank lll, sing along to some old liank Williams hits, right? llothing too new there.

llot quite. There is some serious technological manipulation going down here, another major step in a digital tidal-wave which has wide-

single coming out, ‘Step By Step‘ (Arista). I hear they’re filling pics with it.

Flatshare ads are free


reaching implications. As llank Jnr solos). The shape of thlngs to come? says himself, maybe the day will come You bet it is. But the biggest surprise? see page 106 when they don’t need singing stars Just how damned good the record has

anymore - ‘they might just be able to turned out to be! (kenny Mathieson)

4s The List 13 Dec 1996-9 Jan 1997