TALLER TALES Bill Willingham and vanous
(DC Vertigo) O
This 'A Sandman Presents' offering has various Supporting characters from Neil Gaiman’s opus brought to the fOre. But Bill Willingham fumbles the ball completely: instead of the rich. dark and thought provoking text we have come to expect from these myths. we get cruddy jokes and surface gloss. Merv Pumpkinhead turns up in a woeful James Bond pastiche and new character. assistant librarian Danny Nod. is simply childish. Perhaps worst of all is how the world of the Dreaming is handled. reduced to a fantasy. comedy Hollywood. This is a pure desecration of what was a magnificent concept. Avoid like the plague if you have any
90 THE LIST 8 Q? Jan 200-1
affection for the source material. (Henry Northmore)
TANK GIRL: APOCALYPSE! Grant/Pritchett/ Gascoline/Bond (Titan Books) 0000
The iconic fem fighter returns with a fourth collection of tales crammed full of blood. guts. erm. babies and trips to Mars. Dark humour. vibrant colours and clever swipes at contemporary Cultural icons abound in Apocalypse! which finds Earth on the brink of extinction thanks to the Blood God Baal. and Tank Girl pregnant with the next Messiah.
Not one for the faint hearted. this is a fast- paced action comic with witty one-liners. an outrageous and addictive plot and the ‘take no prisoners' attitude of the heroine herself and her
chauvinistic squeeze. Booga the mutant kangaroo. Another winning read from a legendary series. (Camilla Pia)
AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL STRUM AND DRUM: GREAT MOMENTS IN ROCK’N’ROLL Jeff Orff
(Alternative Comics) 0...
Strum and Drang
creel Willem ii Rail .i' [fall
Embedded somewhere in a hickville Yankee world where kids listen to old Violent Femmes tunes and wrestle with damp peace bangles by lake and bonfire side. Jeff Orff's bathetic scratchy strips are certainly pretty unique. He is on the fringes of the New Subversive Political Cartoonist movement in the US which includes Ted Rall and Lynda Barry (whose Ernie Pook 's Comeek is probably the nearest touchstone here). Orff details arcane. intimate and lonely moments lived on the fringes of urban cool. There are memories here that are clearly not Orff's own. maybe from an old Allman Brothers
" WE'RE GOlNé TO GIVE HIM
biography or a Lester Bangs essay (in his sweeter moments). This is a tender. strangely restOrative ride. even if Orff can't really draw for shit. (Paul Dale)
SURREAL THE BANANA/SKIN JOKE Malcy Duff (Own) .0. «- ft“ . ‘
Duff's self-published trawl through slapstick psychosis and what seems to be the Lorelei myth is impressive indeed. lt ploughs a path somewhere between Johnny Ryan's Angry YOUl/l Com/X and Richard Sala's Evil Eye series. Structurally and instinctively. this work suggests a dark talent. Over its 14 pages it tells a disturbing. if barely coherent. tale of misanthropy and temptation. Duff may just be a talent to watch and collect for the underground connoisseur. To order a copy contact malcyduff<a>hotmail.coin. (Paul Dale)
455m -. ﬁrst i"
Taller Tales: Sandman fan beware
TERRY LEE HALE
Tender Loving Hell: The Best of Terry Lee Hale
Born into an army family in 1953 in San Antonio. Texas. Hale decided to go it alone and follow the model of his folk heroes (Morrison, the Grateful Dead. Dylan and Guthrie) by drifting from San Francisco to Chicago and beyond. By 1994 he started making records of his own. after years of writing (mostly unsuccessfully) for others. This selection from five of his albums is actually pretty cool. He's pretty much unknown here but in Germany and other parts of northern Europe he has quite a good following. Part Johnny Cash. part Harry Nilsson. his songs are painful redneck elegies to life in the slow lane. Some of the tracks on here. such as Clieyanne and Rainer 's Song. are really impressive.
BOBBY CONN The Homeland (Thrill Jockey) 000
The whole point of Bobby Conn is that he's a loony. The extrovert American performer is all sassy sleaze and camp glam and. as his last album The Go/deii Age proved. he's adept at consuming all those appropriate musical references and spitting them out in new and original sounds. The Home/arid is Conn's political record. unlikely as that may seem given
his obsession With seedy, glit/y glamour of all kinds. and while he mostly doesn't let his anti American stance cloud the feelgood retro R'n'R Vibes. there is a certain introspection here that fails to match the mans full on moments of the past. (Doug Johnstone)
DJ Garth — Revolutions in Sound (Grayhound Recordings) 0..
‘Cra/y times we're livin‘ in.‘ declares the inlay to this inoffensive house record. before suggesting that 'above all else music has the power to connect people.‘ While it would be great if there were a significant correlation between the popularity of house music and the relative tolerance and Wisdom of world governments. one senses DJ Garth should really set his sights on making people move their feet. Garth is one of the San Francisco scene's bigger cheeses. and this compilation draws from artists (Rocket. Ambusher. Audio Soul Project) on his Grayhound label. It's bassy. funky stuff: veiy nice. but with little to distinguish itself from the herd. (James Smart)
LILLC l RONlCA
FROG POCKET Moon Mountain of the Fords
It's surely the destiny of all British electronica
acts to be compared to Aphex TWin, as Richard D James takes over the