record reviews

ROCK Jimi Hendrix

South Saturn Delta (Experience Hendrix/MCA) * ** ‘k

Just another Hendrix release scraping the bottom of the barrel? Wrong. South Saturn Delta mixes fifteen tracks from 1967 to 1970, running the gamut from manic feedback to sublime instrumentals, including some you won't have heard before. 'Power Of Soul' appears in all its pre-cut ’n’ paste glory, while ’South Saturn Delta' gets a little Jazzy with a couple of horns in the mix. ’Pali Gap’ is divine. If you know Hendrix, you'll love this; if you don't, skip it and get the recently released Best OHMCA) urgently. And turn the volume up. (MS)

The Leopards

They Tried Staying Calm (Creeping Bent) * k t *

. . . but those bits of their debut album weren’t so successful, so instead the Glaswegian trio concentrated on what they do best low—slung guitar swaggers, punk mayhem and psychobilly psychosis of a most frenetic nature. The Crampsy ’Theme E’, the howling crescendos of ’Surf On’ and any track with 'Dog' in the title are a blistering antidote to those bands who can't inject ClaSSIC influences with any life of their own. Of the non-nosebleed moments, only 'Starlings’ really passes muster, but otherwise all rock 'n’ roll life is here. Boolahaowl as The Leopards say. Whatever that means. (FS)

Kevin McDermott


For Those In Peril From The Sea (Tula) ‘k tar

Kevin McDermott is the Scottish pop star who never was, though his cruelly- overlooked Island Records debut should by rights have seen him scaling the charts shoulder-to-shoulder with Deacon Blue and Del Amitri. It would be nice to think that this record will break his run of underachievement. McDermott’s oft-baffling wordplay is backed up in exemplary fashion by the Orchestra, who can swagger when requned and prowde the reqwsite

Pizzicato Five: The coolest band on this or any other globe

48 THE LIST 10 Oct—23 Oct 1997

oomph on every song. Lightly seasoned with the idiosyncracies which no self-respecting maverick would ditch, it's still a nourishing dish with some tracks (in particular 'lcarus Landing’ and ’Hayley's Comet’) which could, given the chance, tickle the taste buds of arena-goers. (AM)


Shoeshine Chartbusters (Shoeshine) flint: at

For a modest little label started by BMX Bandit Francis Macdonald just a year ago, Shoeshine have a lot to crow about, and this handy sampler includes the A- and B-sides of their first six singles plus eight unreleased tracks. The cast list comprises various permutations of Teenage Fanclub, Eugenius and BMX Bandits members plus Radio Sweethearts, all turning in tunes of varying degrees of loveliness, and, the jewel in Shoeshine's boot, five bluesy tracks performed by Alex Chilton at the 13th Note. Radio Sweethearts’ reverential and samey country tracks aside, there's nary a dud among the bunch. (AM)

POP Pizzicato Five

Happy End Of The World (Matador) *‘k‘k‘k

The coolest band on this or any other globe are back with more 605 soundtrack swing, handbag circumnavigating boogie and stereophonic special effects. Few British bands today fulfil the cliched status of being big in Japan, the explanation being that the Japanese have assimilated all the best bits of pop and no longer need to look west. That being the case, P5 are probably the zenith of far eastern achievement and St Etienne can cash in their chips now. This is in fact a half brilliant record held back by too much technological mischief, but boasting the song title of the Millennium - ’Porno 3003: Music For Sofa’. (RE)


Loop Bites Dog (North South Records) * w ‘k

A flutter of cowbells, a shimmer of Eastern chants and you’re diving deep into Mystic Ambient Land. Yet Loop Guru are only partial members of the ethnic-rinse, twin chant-and-noseflute school of ambience. This is altogether more heady stuff: a carefully layered collage of dance-based beats with samples ranging from ethereal vocals to funky Fender Rhodes and John Taverner to gamalans. Although, once intricately constructed and looped, the songs have an annoying tendency to meander, Loop Bites Dog is worthy of repeated Iistenings. Electronic music to sip a cask-strength single malt to and still be sure of annoying the neighbours. (TD)

DANCE Various

Tony de Vit Live In Tokyo (Boxed Music) 1% * it * it

Last year, Jeff Mills gave us the edited highlights of his set at the Liquid

ROCK Bob Dylan

Time Out Of Mind (Columbia) 1H: air *ir

Bob Dylan hasn’t sounded this good in years. But then Bob Dylan hasn't written any new songs for years, using Good As I Been To You and World Gone Wrong to cover up for an extended bout of writer's block that’s lasted since his last LP of original material in 1990.

From the first few rasping lines of the reggae-tinged opener ‘Love Sick’. it's apparent that if Dylan isn't back up to the peak of his powers then he's getting close. It’s an album drenched in blues, almost straining under the weight of some weary, weary love songs. Producer Daniel Lanois has fashioned for him an organ-heavy background and much of Bob's time is spent in an off-kilter swamoblues not unlike something Tom Waits might

come up with.

For variety. there are a few diversions into Chicago blues, slow, downbeat country and the acoustic roadhouse workout of 'Dirt Road Blues'. At the midway point, there's even the relief of 'Make You Feel My Love'. a less disturbing romantic ballad. But after that he‘s back on edgy, ambiguous form. It's rounded off by 'Highlands', at sixteen minutes way longer than 'Desolation Row’ and served up like Howlin' Wolf on strong sedatives. People are calling Time Out Of Mind Dylan's best since Blood On The Tracks. They’re not exaggerating. (Alastair Mabbott)

Rooms in Tokyo. Now Tony de Vit who was single handedly responsible for taking the banging, hard-house sound known as Nu-NRG out of the gay clubs and into the commercial circun gives us over two hours of the set he played there last May He's not as tricksy a DJ as Mills, but he's every bit as energetic, Havmg forged the link between house and rave, de Vit is not ashamed to demonstrate it in a smoothly btiilding set that is guaranteed to get the sweat glistening on those torsos. (TD)


A Man In A Room, Gambling (Point) ***

In A Man In A Room, Gambling, swlptor Juan Munoz. describes ways of cheating at cards, underscored by Bryars’s evocative music. They were originally written in ten five-minute segments for separate broadcast on radio, and are best heard in isolation -- as a group, their repetitions dilute the intended impact The disc includes five of the pieces, alongside three longer works, Les Fiancai/les and The North Shore for the ensemble, and The South Downs, a duet for cello and piano They are all highly characteristic examples of Bryars" musm‘, although it is not the most compelling of his recordings. (KM)


. Pat Metheny Group

Imaginary Day (WEA) ***

It is to the guitarist’s credit that he has not only experimented With apparently

inimical partners like Ornette Coleman and Derek Bailey over the years, but also ensured that the more commercial Pat Metheny Group continues to explore fresh means of expreSSion within their popular ftiSion-style framework. Like the earlier Secret Story, his debut for WEA has an impliCit neo-narrative ’journey’ structure, incorporating an exotic spread of idioms and inspirations. As ever, the playing is impeccable, With Lyle Mays' characteristic keyboard inventions featured alongside Metheny’s sublime guitar work, including further explorations on hybrid inventions like fretless classical guitar and the 42-string

Pikasso guitar. (KM) i larla 0' Lionaird

The Seven Steps to Mercy (Real World) it t ‘k at

'Sean nos' is a form of Irish Gaelic traditional song (literally 'Old Style’) which has survwed for centuries: as

remarkably intense, darkly passronate

and subtly beautiful. Now in his 30'S. larla O’ Lionaird has been a celebrated

. sean nos singer Since childhood, and i has recently returned to live

performance as the voice in the cool Celtic grooves of the Afro-Celt Sound

i System. This album finds him Wielding