Music Reviews

Tommy Boy’s Greatest Beats

Various Artists

Tommy Boy

Tommy Boy seems to lack vision in recent times, as evidenced by the release of Tommy Boy’s Greatest Beats. TBGB is marketed on Tommy Boy’s Web site (the GB timeline stuff is super nice – you can watch some of the songs’ videos via RealPlayer, but it denigrates to a timeline of predominantly Coolio and K7 hits and US news events – foreshadowing the need for the release of this 4-disc set; see below for URL) as a chronology of important musical developments in the history of the Tommy Boy label. Why that specific approach is supposed to appeal to the average Tommy Boy listener is an etiological mystery. However, what is glaringly apparent is the mileage Tommy Boy is wringing out of latent Afrika Bambaataa and Stetsasonic media drool.

Included are some good basics that most won’t mind having around on CD, even if you already have them on vinyl (tracks by Afrika Bambaataa, Stetsasonic, De La Soul, Digital Underground, and G.L.O.B.E. and Whiz Kid’s “Play That Beat Mr. DJ,” which I am particularly excited about, as my K-Tel Electric Breakdance record warped badly 5 years ago). Then there are the tracks that land somewhere between danceable and tolerable (Queen Latifah, Coolio, Total feat. Notorious B.I.G.). The final third fall nothing short of over-the-top inane (Information Society; RuPaul [although I did almost find a use for this at work last week]; Club Nouveau, god help us!). What were they thinking (mail insights to leroy@ink19.com)? People to whom the idea of a Tommy Boy box set might appeal would surely have the flame in their wallet extinguished by the mere mention of Club Nouveau. It’s one of those comps that makes you want to invest the time and labor to edit and re-record it on your friend’s CD burner. Tommy Boy, 902 Broadway, 13th Floor, New York, NY 10010


Recently on Ink 19...

New Music Now 011: Nora O’Connor

New Music Now 011: Nora O’Connor

Features

On today’s New Music Now, Judy Craddock talks to our musical guest, Nora O’Connor, about her solo album, My Heart, and the captivating new music she’s listening to right now. Tune in for great music, and more ’90s references than you can shake a scrunchie at.

Big Time Gambling Boss

Big Time Gambling Boss

Screen Reviews

Writer Kazuo Kasahara and director Kôsaku Yamashita transcend genre conventions to create the memorable film Big Time Gambling Boss. Phil Bailey reviews.

Frank Bello

Frank Bello

Features

Frank Bello’s new memoir Fathers, Brothers, and Sons: Surviving Anguish, Abandonment, and Anthrax takes us from a New York childhood, to Anthrax stadium tours, to fatherhood with the charming informality of a conversation with an old friend. Then I’m Gone, Bello’s first solo EP, provides accompaniment. Joe Frietze reviews.

An Interview with Starberry

An Interview with Starberry

Interviews

Rising musician Starberry blends rock and roll and post-punk for a refreshing punch that sticks around. Elijah McDaniel talks with the New Jersey artist about creativity, falsettos, and grinding the internet.

%d bloggers like this: