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  • Article

    Regarding Henry

    Henry Rollins Electric Ballroom November 16, 1996 Damn. I wanted to rip into Henry Rollins so bad I could taste a bloody scrap of his black Gap tee shirt on my tongue. Power Book ad-posing, 7-Eleven coffee-chugging, "Baretta" guy in bette...

    by David Holthouse on November 21, 1996
  • Article


    Gene Autry Blues Singer 1929-1931 (Columbia) Aside from containing Gene Autry's best recorded work--that is, those songs cut long before the Tioga Springs, Texas, country boy kicked his dirt-farm past to become the sort of sterile singing...

    by Serene Dominic on November 21, 1996
  • Article

    Partners in Crime

    Susanna Hoffs Susanna Hoffs (London) Bad pop songs never die, they just get banished to remote parts of the world where people's tastes are less developed. Thus it was on a recent rip to Finland when I heard the Bangles' appallingly bad 1...

    by Gina Arnold on November 21, 1996
  • Article


    Karen Carpenter Karen Carpenter (A&M) Both A&M honchos (Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss) thought the solo album Karen Carpenter spent much of 1979 making was a bomb, and wanted it diffused without a public hearing. So did brother Richard Carpe...

    by Robert Wilonsky on November 14, 1996
  • Article

    The Crenshaw Redemption - Marshall Crenshaw goes back to the drawing board and comes up with a shiny new Miracle of Science

    In 1982, when up-and-coming video stars were trying to look like supermen of suave, Detroit-born singer Marshall Crenshaw came on like a mild-mannered Clark Kent, albeit one with a secret weapon--an encyclopedic knowledge of pop music past and presen...

    by Serene Dominic on November 14, 1996
  • Article

    Mexico Blues - Los Lobos moves from East L.A. to Chicago and the Mississippi Delta on Colossal Head

    "We like fractured, broken sounds," says Los Lobos sax man Steve Berlin. "We're looking for that broken AM-radio sound, a certain poignancy that is more soulful, especially in this 32-bit digital world." For Colossal Head, its first album of new...

    by Chris King on November 14, 1996
  • Article

    That's Just Peechee

    "Supergroup" is one of the lamest, most cliched labels a music critic can slap on a band. The term conjures the image of conceited, balding, fallen guitar gods posed riding the cash cow on a reunion tour. Doubtless, Berkeley, California's the Pe...

    by Brendan Joel Kelley on November 14, 1996
  • Article

    Shaking and Stirring

    Various artists Shots in the Dark (Delphonic Sound) Oranj Symphonette Oranj Symphonette Plays Mancini (Gramavision) Inspector Clouseau may still be the anti-Bond, but the man who wrote his theme song has become the very epitome ...

    by David Holthouse on November 14, 1996
  • Article

    What's the Best High There Is?

    High on the Vibe Saturday, November 9 Sixth Avenue and Jackson I am god. At least, that's what Sunshine told me and 1,427 of my fellow deities near the climax of Dubtribe Sound System's two-hour live house-music performance at High on the...

    by David Holthouse on November 14, 1996
  • Article


    Wesley Willis Fabian Road Warrior (American) That thud you're hearing is the sound of thousands of hardworking songwriters smashing their heads against a wall. Why? Because Wesley Willis--a tone-deaf, schizophrenic singer whose songwritin...

    by Serene Dominic on November 7, 1996
  • Article

    Graham Parker Perks Up - Rock's premier tough-but-tender songwriter flips on the tough switch again with Acid Bubblegum

    Angry young men? Billboard's overrun with 'em. Angry old men? Congress has cornered the market. But angry middle-aged men? Not a big draw. At 45, Graham Parker finds himself between a rocker and a hard sell, despite his protests that he's "as me...

    by Serene Dominic on November 7, 1996
  • Article

    What's So Funny About Peace, Love and Understanding? - Dubtribe aims to help "reclaim your house nation" . . . but wants to keep you dancing while you're at it

    The music we've come to know as techno, at least to some degree, has gone the way of earlier "underground" musics such as punk, heavy metal and hip-hop: It's been commercialized. Granted, the techno one hears behind TV sneaker and beer commercials is...

    by Frank Smith on November 7, 1996
  • Article

    History in the Faking

    Gary Allan Used Heart for Sale (Decca) Dolly Parton Treasures (Rising Tide/Blue Eye) The modern-day male country singer is a pop star now, a pretty boy in a store-fitted Stetson and pressed Wranglers. He's more prefab than passi...

    by Robert Wilonsky on November 7, 1996
  • Article

    Preacher Man

    Chuck D Autobiography of Mistachuck (Mercury) He's still the toughest-talking man in hip-hop, the self-proclaimed "Prophet of Rage" taking on the profits of rage that would dismiss him as the forgotten fossil--which, of course, he is when...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 31, 1996
  • Article

    Jamaican Whoopie - Arizona's ska kings trace roots of reggae

    Ska came first. Not reggae. But Rasputin died easier than the misconception that it's the other way around. As the popularity of ska continues to swell--both for traditional ska acts like Hepcat and the Pie Tasters and ska-flavored pop tarts like No ...

    by Allen Sloan Torpie on October 31, 1996
  • Article

    Ten Scariest Concept Albums of All Time - Dreck or treat

    If your patented audio Halloween greeting is that old, dusty Chilling Thrilling Sounds of the Haunted House album, here's a suggestion: This year, dump it and pipe out something that will inflict some genuine psychological damage. That's right, surro...

    by Serene Dominic on October 31, 1996
  • Article

    Here's Another Letter to the Big 5 Click (et al.):

    Strange, how it feels, thinking you would-be Tony Montanas may be gunning for me. Strange, and not much fun. What I notice most is the thirst. It started last Wednesday afternoon, about four hours after the first of several local promoters, musicians...

    by David Holthouse on October 31, 1996
  • Article

    Gone Today, Hair Tomorrow - One man's Poison is another band's comeback

    Here was the future of rock 'n' roll. Here was the fabulous C.C. DeVille--would-be guitar hero, flat on his stomach and platinum hair askew--dreaming rock-star dreams on the nearly bare floor of Poison headquarters, circa 1985. Just a quiet moment fo...

    by Steve Appleford on October 31, 1996
  • Article

    Here's a Letter to the Big 5 Click:

    Dear fools-- I caught your wack excuse for a live set at the local hip-hop talent showcase last Friday (10/18) at Electric Ballroom. Your beats were tired, your rhymes had more bites than the house virgin in a vampire's castle, and your delivery ...

    by David Holthouse on October 24, 1996
  • Article

    Hit Me With Your Rhythm Shtick

    Sheep on Drugs Double Trouble (Invisible) Test Dept. Totality (Invisible) Sheep on Drugs and Test Dept. both have recently released albums on Invisible Records, and are now together on tour. Beyond those commonalities, the two B...

    by Frank Smith on October 24, 1996
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