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  • Article

    Recordings

    Elvis Costello and the Attractions All This Useless Beauty (Warner Bros.) In his sleeve notes for this year's Goodbye Cruel World reissue, Elvis Costello congratulated us for purchasing his worst album ever. He was good to his word--until...

    by Serene Dominic on August 1, 1996
  • Article

    The Other Purple Dinosaur

    (symbol) Chaos and Disorder (Warner Bros.) The appropriately titled Chaos and Disorder, the latest in a flush of new releases by the Artist Formerly Known As Prince, sounds a lot like what's currently known as slop. It's a sketchy piece o...

    by Ted Simons on August 1, 1996
  • Article

    Contract and Expel - Famous parting shots from artists formerly "under exclusive arrangement" with their labels

    Had relations been warmer between him and Warner Bros., we might still be on a first-name basis with the Artist Formerly Known As Prince. He's made no secret of his disdain for the terms of his recording contract, to the point of shaving his facial h...

    by Serene Dominic on August 1, 1996
  • Article

    In Harmacy's Way

    Sebadoh leader Lou Barlow has been the reluctant godfather of experimental lo-fi since his groundbreaking acoustic four-track work on the Boston anti-folk trio's first two albums (Freed Man, 1989, and Weed Forestin, 1990). Those two records were foll...

    by Brendan Joel Kelley on August 1, 1996
  • Article

    Recordings

    Neil Young & Crazy Horse Broken Arrow (Reprise) Among the phrases you least want to hear from a musician, "Hey, let's jam" ranks down there with "So, she's your sister, huh?" and "Don't worry, it's not loaded." But at least ol' Neil isn't...

    by Roni Sarig on July 25, 1996
  • Article

    Wushu Clan

    One summer day A.D. 525, a Buddhist monk from India named Ta Mo arrived at the base of Mount Shaoshi in what would later become the Henan province of central China. He took in the scenery, thought or said something to the effect of "This is the place...

    by David Holthouse on July 25, 1996
  • Article

    Hope You Die Before We Get Old - The reunited Who and Sex Pistols cheat death one more time

    It is a Midsummer Night's Eve in a wooded glen somewhere in the wilds of Finland. The chill blue sky is full of cumulus clouds, the air is ringing with the music of Bad Religion, and I am surrounded by thousands of comatose Finnish kids in an alcohol...

    by Gina Arnold on July 25, 1996
  • Article

    Pick Up Your Microphones - Blunt talk on the Smokin' Grooves Tour with the Fugees, Spearhead and A Tribe Called Quest

    Who would have thought Elwood Blues would bring us the premier hip-hop tour of the summer and, so far, the decade? Dan Aykroyd's House of Blues--the juke-joint-themed chain-restaurant-and-music venue he established in 1992 with Hard Rock Cafe fo...

    by Roni Sarig on July 25, 1996
  • Article

    Soul Kitschin'

    Soul Coughing Irresistible Bliss (Slash/Warner Bros.) An East Coast slang term for vomiting, Soul Coughing serves well as a name for this 3-year-old NYC quartet that ingests, digests, then regurgitates a stylistic stew of rock, jazz, ambi...

    by Matt Golosinski on July 25, 1996
  • Article

    Threat Assessment: godheadSilo - S.O.S. (Save Our Speakers) Intelligence Dossier 396

    godheadSilo is a highly subversive experimental noise-punk duo whose base of operations is Olympia, Washington. Known audio terrorist activities include use of unnaturally low bass frequencies rendered at brutal volume. S.O.S. field operative reports...

    by Brendan Joel Kelley on July 18, 1996
  • Article

    Tune Town - Your guide to H.O.R.D.E. White-boy dreads and a hemp-cloth hacky sack are recommended, but no longer required.

    Here's what you've already been told about the H.O.R.D.E. festival: That it's the hippie Lollapalooza. That it's something for Deadheads to follow around this summer now that Jerry's gone. That it's an acronym for "Horizons of Rock Developing Everywh...

    by Roni Sarig on July 18, 1996
  • Article

    Pit of Despair

    Skinheads in a mosh pit are like barracudas in a swimming pool--they ruin all the fun, and if you see them coming, the wise move is to hop your ass out of there pronto. I knew better than to stick around when I saw a pack of skins pop from the c...

    by David Holthouse on July 18, 1996
  • Article

    Recordings

    The Grifters Ain't My Lookout (Sub Pop) Too often I'll forget a CD in my portable player until I go to put in another disc miles from home. Without the proper jewel on hand, I stash the stray disc in another case for safekeeping. Because ...

    by Roni Sarig on July 18, 1996
  • Article

    Dark Riders - Heavy-metal cowboys Pantera don't play none of that "hokey-pokey music"

    "I think the alternative scene is disgusting," says Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul on the eve of his band's new world tour. "I don't know how these bands can feel good about robbing a dead man's grave. To me, every one of them sounds like fucking Nirvan...

    by Lee Howard on July 18, 1996
  • Article

    Odelay-ee-ow

    Beck Odelay (DGC) What happens when a white guy from downtown L.A. starts hanging with kitschy Caucasians in Silver Lake? Does he lose his sense of hippity-hop? Does his swagger turn to slack? Does he even know who he is at the end of the...

    by Ted Simons on July 18, 1996
  • Article

    Farewell Songs

    Patti Smith Gone Again (Arista) When Patti Smith sang "Jesus died for somebody's sins but not mine" to open the first song on her first album, 1975's Horses, she was an emerging icon, a rail-thin protopunk thumbing her nose at the heavens...

    by Ted Simons on July 11, 1996
  • Article

    Playing With the King of Hearts - Suicide Kings stack the deck with roots country for the alt. rock set

    Suicide Kings' two front men look like the kind of guys your daddy warned you not to play poker with. Clad in timeworn cowboy shirts, scuffed, pointy boots and skinny-legged jeans, Bruce Cannole and Dick Taylor stick lit cigarettes in the necks ...

    by Marsha Mardock on July 11, 1996
  • Article

    Strange Angel - Laurie Anderson breaks her own rules--again

    "I'm stripping it down," says Laurie Anderson from her Manhattan studio. "I'm going to be the avant-garde of the technological backlash." Anderson speaks of her new live performance piece, "The Speed of Darkness," a program of songs and storytel...

    by David Holthouse on July 11, 1996
  • Article

    Skate Free or Die

    I didn't have a very patriotic Fourth of July. I burned most of the morning on a quest for a smut video and the rest of the day flaying my ears with punk rock and dodging skateboards. Let me explain. About a month ago, publicists in L.A. sta...

    by David Holthouse on July 11, 1996
  • Article

    Recordings

    The Kelley Deal 6000 Go to the Sugar Altar (Nice Records) There are roughly two kinds of identical twins in the world: Those content to live life as a unit (and perhaps star in Doublemint commercials), and those who separate to carve out ...

    by Serene Dominic on July 11, 1996
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