TAKING THE EDGE OFF A GUILLOTINE ACT

SCREED

The moral to this story? Don't hire an Alice Cooper tribute act to perform at a family fair. Then again, perhaps the fair honchos thought Rowe was paying tribute to the current clean, sober, golf-playing, PTA-member Alice Cooper. But that would be boring.

More Hard-hitting Investigative Journalism: I'll take this opportunity to satisfy a couple of callers who are miffed about KJZZ-FM's decision to drop the shows Reggae Street, Afro-Pop Worldwide, Mary MacPartland's Piano Jazz and Rhythm Review. In particular, people were steamed because they had donated money to the station, ostensibly to support those shows, only to have them disappear.

"Those shows ran for a year or longer, but they didn't meet their [financial] goals last October, then they were dropped in February," explains program director Scott Williams. "Anybody who wrote in for a refund got one--only a couple people did it; all you have to do is put it in writing to the general manager of the station." There you go.

But Seriously: What is the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion? Go to Boston's on Sunday and find out. But first I'll give you a hint: The charismatic Spencer used to be in New York's Pussy Galore, which consisted of three guitars, no bass; humans and critics alike thought the band was brilliant or worthless, nothing in between. Spencer is one of the more dynamic stage performers in the fabulous history of rock. Kind of a retarded, angry young Elvis. Look, I know this is true cause I asked my wife. The Explosion's sound is made up of fractured chunks of noises, mainly from guitars that sound like they're breaking. But it works.

I telephoned Mr. Spencer himself, just to see if he could describe his band any better than I did. Here's what he said: "What the fuck do you want me to say? We're a serious band, but I think what we do is crazy. There's funny things in it, but I think rock n' roll is a crazy thing, and it's even better if it can make you laugh. But then again, we're not a fuckin' joke band." And if that doesn't help, then take note that Doo Rag, Tucson's self-styled blues enigma, is opening up. As one Bill Mitchell wrote to New Times in the March 9 issue, "I found the members [of Doo Rag] to be barely adequate musicians." That's good enough for me.

Go See: Forget about INXS; taking the stage before the boys from the Land Where Water Drains the Wrong Way will be one of the great hard-edged pop bands around--and there are plenty right now--Material Issue. That's on Monday at Veterans' Memorial Coliseum. genepool and from Boulder, Colorado--the town that brought you Big Head Todd--comes Love Lies. Both will open for Caroline's Spine on Friday at the Roxy.

Fun! Fun! Fun! In closing, I thought I'd do a good deed and pass on what look to be a couple really fun activities for all you bored kids out there. I found them in a book called Way Out Ideas for Youth Groups. The first one is called Funnel Trick. Here's what to do: "Place a funnel in a boy's pants (in front). Have him tip his head back, then place a nickel on his forehead. The object is for him to drop the nickel into the funnel three times in succession. The third time pour a cup of water into the funnel while his head is tipped back."

The other trick is called Skydiving Lesson, but I think it would probably be more exciting if, instead of telling you the rules, I just showed you the picture. Have fun!

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