(Dreamworks O.

and underwhelming. ‘Bleach’ (live 0“


(MKM 00.

away with.

‘Everything' (Atlantic 0


After the success of At The Drive-In you expect more from Sparta. three of the five which made up this mighty fine group. But ‘Austere'

). is a disappointing angsty rocky electronic affair that is rather dull

) from Easyworld. on the other hand. is definitely worth a shot with its friendly pop rock feel. A perfect anthem for the kids with more sense. Carrying on in the rock vein is Gold Blade. Those expecting a tribute to Angus et at will be sorely disappointed but

) does have a strong and welcome punk influence.

On a more laid back note White Buffalo bring a brooding and intense sound (and dare I say it even a hint of country) with ‘Porcelain Skin'

). A change from their heavy guitar rock but one that they manage to get

On the other hand, lost love. tears and all boys are bastards are the themes for M2M’s

punchy tune this loses its oomph to become another casualty headed to Dullsville.

So let us all thank the wee man up above that there is still some decent music and we have a Single Of The Fortnight from the Hives (pictured). ‘Main Offender‘ (Poptoneszelstar 0000 ) is a welcome blast of jagged vocals over heavy guitar riffs which many may recognise as the soundtrack to Kylie's bucking bronco Agent Provocateur ad. All from a bunch of guys who have no qualms about wearing tight trousers. rocking out and selling their souls for rock'n’roll. Bless. (Jane Hamilton)

). Despite the

()0th l RY LINCOLN Mettle (Narwhal) 0000

A debut album from London» based country rock troubadours Lincoln. Mettle is an atmospheric and claustrophobic record. and is a very British take on that hyper trendy alternative country thang.

Mournful horns and strings pop up occasionally amongst minimalist arrangements reminiscent of l. ow or local panoramic heroes the Zepliyrs. while co— singers Alex Gordon and lracey Van l)aal take turns at flipping your heart inside out Willi gentle charrii. Apparently recorded lit a haunted Scottish castle this is a spooky record (and that's not even considering the shit scary artworki. but it's worth bravrng the ghosts for. this is some

heaw Mett/e all right. (Doug Johnstonei

ftOOlS HOOK STEVE EARLE Sidetracks (Arteiiiisl 0000

Well sure. it's only a grab bag of preViously uncollected bits and pieces; and sure. there's a pointless cover of ‘My Back Pages' land even a reggae tune). But this is Steve t arle. for goodness' sakc.

lake in the latest from the finest liner note writer in the business. enjoy a couple of instrumentals With Sharon Shannon and the Irish neighbours. sun yourself to a charming faux-bluegrass version of

108 THE LIST 0213 May 2002

t owell George's ‘Willin". bflStIO with the rantings of actiwst Abbie Hoffman and if Earle With the Fairlield Four on 'Ellis Unit One' doesn't do something to your neck- hairs. seek medical adVIce lllllllOdlillOly. (Ninian Dunnett)



(Caber) O...

The all- acoustic Scottish Guitar Ouartet's self- produced debut CD has been available from the band for a wee while. but now gets a Wider distribution as a Caber release. to coincide With a spate of gigs around the country.

they play the odd standard live. but the imaginatively arranged compositions here are all originals. The music IS firmly rooted in jazz. but draws on a Wide variety of other influences as well. including rock. folk and flamenco. Malcolm Macl arlane. Nigel Clark. Kevrn MacKen/ie and Ged Brockie are all distinctive stylists and strong soloists. both important assets in a group playing on such sunflar instruments. (Kenny Mathieson)


KAREN MATHESON Time To Fall (Verticali O.

lhere used to be a place for records like this. It was on Radio 2) before it went trendy. Or on tSl/(ls light entertainment shows: the pleasant lady singer to pad out the I itt/e And large show. Where it fits now. I don't know. though fans of Capercaillie are likely to be curious.

Bar the odd stinker of a lyric. there's nothing hateful about the singer's second solo album. but there's nothing to get worked up about either. It's not gutsy enough for country. not admnturous enough for world. not rootsy enough for folk. not fun enough for pop. (Mark l-islierl


THE BELLRAYS Meet The Bellrays (Poptones) 0000



It's 1974. You're in your friend's garage in suburbsville USA and more than anything, you want to rock. So let go!

While at first listen you might be tempted to dismiss this [A gang as just another bunch of retro wannabees. with self-confessed influences including the Stooges. the Who and Parliament. it's worth sidling up. putting an arm round their collective shoulders and getting to know them a little better.

At times it's pompous and prog. but the sweet spirit of those kids in the garage infuses the off- kilter drums. ploughing guitar and Black Crowes- esque vocals with something refreshing. It doesn't smell like teen spirit. more a fry-up in a soul kitchen with your favourite leather jacket on. luck in.

(Louisa Pearson)

lNSlltUMt NlAt HIP HOP DAVID JACK Texture Freak

(Knife lighting Monkey) 0..

l rom electro laments and clanky musical potato painting to beat heavy. highly strung dramas. Texture l-reak runs the gamut of hip hop emotion which is. adriiittedly narrow path. Only in creating real atmosphere does instrumental hip hop truly transcend its origins. Only on a handful of tracks does [)awd Jack do this. instead he keeps things interesting Willi plenty of random found sound and cut'ri'paste treatment on all manner dialogue and vocal snippets.

On a couple of tracks he stoops to dip a toe in that mucky pond marked

‘Glitch electronica. Keep Out!' and comes out smelling of roses as opposed to obscurist. wantonly unpleasant shit. Not exactly groundbreaking stuff here. but more than enough to make yOu giggle. dance and stroke at intermittent periods. (Mark Robertson)

jazz. they are never allowed to imprison the music. Shipp makes the whole thing sound like a natural extension of his

than simply a grafting together of idioms. and does so in highly

enjoyable fashion. (Kenny

JAZZ MATTHEW SHIPP Mathew“) Nu Bop WORLD (Thirsty Ear) .000 TARIKA Takira

Pianist Matthew Sliipp combines his regular avarit-ja/x quartet (featuring saxophonist Daniel Carter, the great William Parker on bass. and druriimer Guillermo E. Brown) Willi the hip- hop rhythms and s‘ynth of FLAM for this latest release in Thirsty Ear's innovative Blue Series. The jazz, musicians work out in style across the unaccustomed rhythms and textures. and if the

(Sakay) «no


It’s great to have them back. Beating the Stone Roses, Elastica and Stereo MCs to claim the record for longest time between albums, the

Breeders have finally got around to releasing the

follow-up to 1993’s spectacular and hugely successful Last Splash.

Of course nine years don’t leave lives untouched and it’s a different Breeders that line up in 2002 but a no less effective one. The general atmosphere on “fitle TK is one of relaxed, if slightly sinister quirkiness. There’s no ‘Cannonball’ here, no international hit singles, but there is a bunch of great, slow-burning, offbeat rock’n’roll classics which ooze nonchalant class.

The philosophy is stated in the stumbling chug

of album opener ‘Little Fury’ as Kim Deal declares ‘I will sing title TK/If I don’t pass out’, and you believe it. Deal’s voice is as gloriously

disturbing and sexy as ever, and she still sounds

like she’s singing and indeed living on the very edge of existence.

And her weirdly seductive way with words is also still razor sharp, as lines like ‘Victory’s a blue and bruisin’ voice/I’m leaking pure white noise’ in ‘London Song’ is testament to. But there are no stand out tracks, instead there is a subtle continuity of feeling that sucks you into Breederworld and resists any attempt to pull free.

Now with a stable band established, including Kim’s twin sister Kelley back on guitar, it can only be hoped that it’s not another nine years before the next one. (Doug Johnstone)

metronomic beats do not have quite the flexibility of

musical directions. rather

Remember the Roriette's 'Be My Baby"? Then have fun with ‘Malalako'. the wild Tarika version. sung in Malagasy. French