THE MUSIC The Music (Hut) 000
To get the flag out with: ‘The Music are the new. . . [insert band here]' on it and parade it above the rock trenches may win you allies in the NME camp but this debut doesn't suggest the Music have the stamina to win the war and be home by Christmas. They do have energy and a haversack brimming with good ideas but Robert Nutter's incessant wailing and their fondness for a 'jam' (there's no track under four-and-a-half minutesl make this tiring at times. ‘Take the Long Road and Walk it' and "The People' are both Wild and wonderful but sometimes it sounds like they're playing from the bottom of a well. They
need a variety of textures and some judicious editing to see them through that long second-album winter. (Mark Robertsonl
HOP HOP SCARFACE
(Def Jam Seuthl 0000
With a veice like a bucket of molasses and an outlook that's even blacker. Scarface has always excelled at iniXing grimy street lore with big. bumpy beats.
For this. his sixth album. Jay-Z and Beanie Segal show up for ‘In Cold Blood' but fail to derail Scarface's centrifugal vocal force. The earthy ‘Keep Me Down' is tremendOLis. built on a twanging blues guitar riff while the Neptunes and Faith Evans combine to build a silver lining into the dark cloud of ‘Someday'.
Although there's many a hard luck stery here the overriding feeling IS an optimistic one. aSSuring us that a brighter day is coming. (Mark Robertson)
106 THE LIST 13—19 Sep 2002
THE MERCURY PROGRAM
A Data Learn the Language lTigerstylei 0000
When the likes of Tortoise
and Mogwai re— popularised (that's popularised not invented so don't write in complaining. rock l‘Ol‘de the notion of instru'i‘ental rock they opened the floodgates for siiitilarly- Spirited instrumental investigations that would previously been cast onto the lit/X purist's slag heap or left to rot as the under card for shouty indieboy rock acts.
Gyroscopic strands of vibes. guitar and bass Submerge a raft of rattling beats as this trio meander down some avenues that are already SOH‘GIIH‘GS a little too well-trodden. They redeem the'itselves however by retainng an
engaging melodic sensibility and some spiky. Surprising turns that prevents this from being a mere rollers soundtrack.
SPANISH HARLEM ORCHESTRA
Un Gran Dia En El Barrio (A Great Day in Harlem)
iPopedope Pykodisci 0...
More Nu Yorican soul from the old hands who created this remarkable sound in the early 70s. This is a kind of Buena Vista Social Club. Harlem style and the line-up is phenomenal. Oscar l-lernandez. Frankie Vasoue/. Ruben Rodriguw and bongo meister Bobby Allende are among the 12-piece ensembfe.
The tunes map a historical and geographical arc o influence from Pedro Flores compositioi‘. 'Obsessmort' from 19417 to delights from the 70s like Colon and Layoe's classic 'Liego La Banda‘. lt’s loud. raucous and funky as all hell. Someone turn on those fire hydrants. iPaul Dale:
lNOlE ROCK LEAVES Breathe
iB Uniguei 0..
The ghost of Ian McCulloch's past can't get no sleep. It materialised to grand effect on Coldplay's new record and weeks later Leaves have produced the second album possessed by his deep quiver. ‘| Go Down' is a hauntingly beautiful opener as guitar tremor and strings build and build into an astonishing chorus. and ‘Silence's striking falsetto soothes tense The Bends—ish guitars.
However. the second half of this debut sees the initial impact wear thin Wltll the di'agg'tingly repetitive Crazy" and the o\./erblo\..-~.in ‘Epitaph' sadly reminiscent of Mansun at
their most pompous. Yet when they get it right. Leaves' vast expanses of dark melody and sound make for weighty listening. (Camilla Piai
ALTCOUNTRY ROCK JOHN PARISH How Animals Move lThrill Jockey'i COO.
John Parish may not yet be as tamOus as the acts
he's collaborated with and produced for — Sparklehorse. Eels. PJ Habxey and Giant Sand -- but :f his second solo albtim's anythmg to go by. he certainly should be.
Co'iw‘g across like a
soundtrack to a
melanchou. '.'.este"n. Ho's;
A/‘I’Vl’I’s i'I/ WU l“
do'ir-nated by languid lilts.
eerie violin strains and shiii‘n‘ering slide guitar riffs. Up-ten‘pc indie bouts on Bernadette and 'Airptane B ues' ".'.’lll(2ll includes a contribution f'on‘ Polly Jean herself. lift the wood but generally this Is down-tin‘e listening that's perfect for those n‘any days when it rains outside. iCatherine Bromleyi
THE BUTTERFLIES OF LOVE
The New Patient (Fonuna Popll 0.0
Who said collapsible indie dead? Welcome back to alternative 80s. when C86 home taping ruled and half—hearted guitars could fall apart at any moinent. A delicate melody sways bety'xeen the t'.'.iinkling guitars of 'Dream Dr'ver'. 'Bad Habit' s sleepy Scott Walker over understated hack.ng and warm Wurlit7er. and ragged gu.tai's slippii‘g in and out of wah-y'xah lead ‘Diamond‘ in sultry bass backed Lou Reed cool.
The NO'N.’ Pat/er?! slides and scrapes at pop music. and under a tangled mess of scratchily tendei lo--fi lie gorgeous tracks to get lost |l‘.. It's just a case of digging out the gems. iCztiiiilla Pia»
THE SHINING True Skies
Two of this lot were in The Verve. once upon a time. So the Shllliflg don't even have to get out of bed in the morning to find their influences.
Of cOurse. the peerless alchemy of their previous band's long-night—of-the- soul csych rock is beyond then‘. but it's still iii‘possii;ie to put down their capacity for faultless. mid—paced indie anthen‘s. Produced by Youth. with songwriting
dutees 'argely split bet‘.'.'een Tong, Jones and singer Duncan Baxter. it's the collat orations between the whole band ‘.'./"l(lll really shine ipardon the pun: like the strutting "(llY‘~r£tl(l that is ‘Otiicksilyei'f or the tight- trousered led Zep sx'ragger of Show You the \‘tlay'. The past theirs and so is the future. IDayid Pollocki Hear more from the Shining on our free CD in issue Out Thu 79 Sep,
ROCK JOSEPHINE This is Not an Advertisement 'L'tllltiltli .0.
Straight outta Aberdeen! Josephine have much to recon‘n‘end them. Their sound is all Jaggy. unfu/xed guitars and disjointed rhythms. and they seem to have learned from bands such as the PiXies. Throwing Muses and Bis.
They Sing about the things that upset most lads and lasses these day s— friends behaving badly. vinyl buying escapades and trips to the pictures. Vocals are shouted across the studio. and the lyrics could be a lot worse. Frant c is the catchy'rord. but they”\.e also got the n‘elcdic muscle. as demonstrated in F/ute Song 2.). in which they" get at slow and wispy on us. Eske a crazed knife maniac suddenly giving his victim a tender hug. Definitely ones to ‘.'.'atch.