and a twangy hillbilly dirge called 'Passing Through’, both as memorable as the title track It’s downbeat stuff, With no chirpy choruses, and very little that sounds strained or contrived (AM)

Wingless Angels

Wingless Angels (Island Jamaica)

3t * 1k at

Back in 1972, while recuperating from the recording of Goat’s Head Soup, Keith Richards bumped into some musicians on a beach on the north coast of Jamaica Alter twenty-five years of playing together whenever the opportunity arose, Brother Richards, the 'albino o.‘ the group’ and these five men ‘- members of the i'Vyai‘Jirig/ir Rastalarian sect, who chant down oppreSSion over an ancient sounding heart-beat drum pulse - assembled in the back yard of the gurtarist’s villa high in the hills and, surrounded by a chorus of night insects, finally recorded this album: an aching, breathing, sad- ioyous record where the atmosphere leaking into the spaces between songs is as important as the music itself (DL)

Preacher Boy

Crow (Wah Tup) s

Hailing from Frisco, the roots'y Preacher Boy can turn their hand to practically any style gomg, but that alone can’t pull Crow out of the mire It's their leader Chris Watkins and his Linengaging songs that are the problem, The Capstan full-strength rasp is impressive at first, but over fourteen tracks it’s torture, an unvarying bull-moose roar no matter what the musical context And there are a lot of those flying past. Preacher Boy bounce from raggle-taggle to country pastiche booze songs to tango to Jazz to reggae, even injecting a little heavy metal thunder But it all seems very pomtless, and to little avail on a record which you may long to escape from well before the end (AM)

Badmarsh 8r Shri

Dancing Drums (Outcaste) is w What With Cornershop riding high in the charts, now couldn’t be a better time for Outcaste Records artists to shout their philosophy from the rooftops. Like Tiinder and co, DJ Badmarsh and multi-instrurrientalist Shri are dedicated to making Cutting- edge dancefloor sounds using

record reviews

ROCK Fugazi End Hits (Dischord) a it w *

'The world,’ said Mar'illion, 'is totally fugazi’, Not that those prog rock puffs knew anything, they wouldn't last two minutes in a room With WashingtOn DC's hardcore quartet. Fugazi and their label Dischord have kept the spirit of independence flying since l988 low- priced releases and gig tickets -— and a decade later, they’ve come up With their best disc yet' an album of hard- edged integrin and musical sophistication Oh yes, this isn't ,iust full—on rioise, it’s what, art-puiik7 Check the coriipos‘itional counterpornt of gurtars and bass on 'Arpeggiat'oi" for writing skills Here’s a sound With balls and brains, and it puts FUQa/Il in a class of their own. (AM)

Nosferatu Lord Of The Flies (Hades) at: s

Genres come and genres go but goth refuses to die, probably because it is music made by and for the undead and, indeed, The Damned's Rat Scabies plays on this album. His presence alone suggests that this prime slab of 'classic’ goth is being played for laughs. There's the titles - 'Witching Hour', ’Darkness Brings', ’Six Feet Below’ and ’(Come On) Taste My Virgin Blood, You Soul Sucker' (readers, can you spot the one I made up?) There's the Eldritch- indebted vocals of Dominic Lavey. There’s the arrangements, especially the overwrought church organ finale of the title track It's all so camp and over-the-top, they have to be taking the piss. Either that, or I'm the next ritual sacrifice. (FS)

Ricky Ross

The Undeveloped Heart EP (Internazionale) it sit-sis

A maxi-single or a mini-LP, take your chorce. Whichever, it does feature some of the tastier Ross offerings to be heard in some time. The leading track is a remix of a song which shows off the kind of wrStful yearning the ex- Deacon Blue man does best. The remaining four are sparse sketches demos, basically including the appropriately dark and hollow ’Ghost'

The mAKE-UP: the ultimate rock 'n' roll religious experience

46 THE [131' 2—l6 Apr 1998

balance is struc k‘ sometimes it's like

Prince: dirty boy

ROCK The Artist/Prince

Crystal Ball (NPG) s'r sir sir st:

It says a lot about our times that the God-like genius of the Sly Stones is proclaimed from the rooftops by earnest young fellows who balk at the very mention of Prince. Perhaps the weird kids of 2050 will be more attuned to the whole funk Duke Ellington dirty pop wonderland of his music, and less afraid of the cool-police. He brings the avant-garde dancing into the hairdressers.

Following the monstrous glory of the triple Emancipation set, Crystal Ball is another daunting edifice, four discs' worth. the first three compiling, in non-chronological order, fourteen years' worth of previously unreleased recordings; Prince’s Bootleg Sessions. From 1983's 'Cloreen Bacon Skin' (which, with its absurdly Beefheartian title. sounds like nothing less than an agitated Tom Waits trying on his minimal James Brown for size, and mentions someone called Alfred repeatedly, desperately) on, there's more going on in one of these tracks as in entire albums by most other artists. The fourth CD is the strangest of beasts, a mostly acoustic collection of new material recorded late in 1997. worth the price alone. Funny, beautiful and mad as hairy toast; the work of a man exposed to The Wizard of Oz far too early. (The Writer Formerly Known as Damien Love)

coulda been contenders' Now, With their first proper long-player, Cec i! pull of the most astonishing rebirth since l Lazarus woke up and smelt the coffee Mellow harmonies are undercut wrth tense gtiitars, singles past and present keep the moshers happy, and the rest of us gaze in wonder at the panoramic landscape of showstopper ’Charm

traditional Asian instruments A

listening to a Bollyvvood soundtrack, but mostly it’s drum ’n' bass exotica A remix of The Dave Pike Set’s classic 60s sitar groove ’Mathar’ (’Indian Vibes’ to you and me) is JUSl one indication of how infectious and commercrally appealing these Outcastes really are,

(FS) Wrestling' Mansun have said they want to make a more gtiitar-based Karate album later this year if it's half as good In Place Of Real mS'ghl (SOUlheml l as Subtitles, they’re IWice the band «it :2

they think they are (Alvlor)


Semi-Detached (ASilvl) s us is

Well, this is what they promised —- a

: heads-down, knees-up rock ’n' roll

f album that shifts away from the doom and gloom of 1995's Inferna/ Love

Therapy7's latest has bursts of concentrated energy that come from spending weeks rather than months in the recording studio, but even though it kicks off with the crashing brilliance of Current single 'Church Of NOise’, it doesn’t match the instant rush of Troub/egum Andy Cairns and his team let go wrth their particular brand of gciitar rock that’s acceptable to indie ears, balancing edgy moments of rough-vOiced paranoia and glorious singalong choruses. Semi-Detached in name only; there's no half-measmes here (Alt/tor)

There are times when this concise (nine tracks in half an hour) album from Bostonian quartet Karate is so understated it’s practically not there, but generally its laidback exploration of guitar textures chimes creatively With what's going on in Scottish alternative Circles There‘s staccato rhythms, defiant vocals, guiet-bit-noisy—bit dynamics and an overall lazyitis which suggests that Karate are a Frankenstein’s monster comprising bits of Mogwai, Arab Strap and The Delgados Scary blSCUllS (FS)


Subtitles (Parlophone) sir, w: e a First came the FugaZi-style riffing of early singles like ’No Excuses’ Then it descended into the dull metal chugging of mini-album Bombar Di’dd/ah 'Ah well,’ we thought, ’they