Democracy in Action

Democracy in Action

Outsight brings to light non-mainstream music, film, books, art, ideas and opinions.

Published, somewhere, monthly since July 1991. Feel free to re-print this article.

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Now, let’s see if I can keep this up. I have found the Internet a convenient
tool for letting local, stated and federal reps know my feelings on all sorts
of political topics. In this “DEMOCRACY IN ACTION” I am going to try and let
you know of one or two topics each month. The first topic is covered in Internet
. This is about the Internet Non-Discrimination Act that will make the
Internet tax ban permanent. The bill breezed through the House of Representatives
and is now in committee at the Senate. Get
the latest on the bill
. “Today we are one step closer to permanently ensuring
that Americans are free from new taxes on their e-mail and Internet access,”
said bill sponsor Rep. Christopher Cox (R-CA), “New taxes discriminating against
Internet users would be unfair to our economy and our society. It is time to
permanently ban them.” Find out where your Senator is on the issue by contacting
him or her through the Web… This next item
is a Federal court case, but you should be aware of it. The band String
Cheese Incident
is trying to succeed where Pearl Jam failed by taking on
Ticketmaster in court. The band is party to a lawsuit filed in the U.S. Federal
Court in Denver, Colorado during August. The band’s ticketing company SCI Ticketing
filed the lawsuit claiming that ticketing giant Ticketmaster has monopolized
the ticketing industry, using its immense market power to prevent competition
for the sale of concert tickets. Because Ticketmaster has exclusive dealing
arrangements with so many venues and promoters, they have closed out independent,
artist-driven ticketing companies like SCI Ticketing. Also, this monopoly allows
Ticketmaster to set its own rapacious service charges. Mike Luba, co-founder
of SCI Ticketing, says, "For bands like The String Cheese Incident, who
depend on heavy touring and lasting fan relationships in order to succeed, services
like direct artist-to-fan ticketing are essential. It allows fans to enjoy the
complete String Cheese experience, from beginning to end," Luba said. "This
involves giving the fans unprecedented attention for the essential part they
play in the artists’ career, and being able to offer fans SCI performances in
high quality venues and with affordable prices." The band has a page for
the lawsuit on its Web site…


The fertile Acid Mothers Temple collective produced two new albums on the Strange
Attractors Audio House
label. Often music from this psychedelic family is
fiery and even challenging. But, the Rebel Powers album Not One Star Will
Stand the Night
is eerie and otherworldly while remaining tranquil. This
is the debut of a side project that includes Kawabata Makoto, Cotton Casino
and original AMT drummer Koizumi Hajime with Telstar Ponies guitarist David
Keenan. This is a minimalist and spacious album of disembodied composition.
More of an unfettered catharsis is the noisy burst coming forth from Tsurubami
on Gekkyukekkaichi. Here Makoto works in a trio with Emi Nobuko (drums)
and Higashi Hiroshi (bass). This soul-purifying opus, which blasts without ever
becoming totally unhinged, hearkens to pre-AMT days when these three were members
of Tenkya Na Ta.

to or Buy Rebel Powers at
Listen to or Buy Tsurubami at


The Projekt label’s publishing project
is Beneath the Icy Floe. The premier issue of the half-sized serial features
Human Drama as the cover story. Inside, the pages are black and white with articles,
interviews and a review section. Of course, the focus is the Projekt roster,
but the entire darkwave genre is sampled for subject matter. Bands featured
include Claire Voyant, Steve Roach, The Brides and Voltaire… While in Bradenton,
Ontario I picked up a mini-zine called The prog.ra(m) . This is the zine
arm of a collective representing “grass roots audio video culture”. The group’s
Web presence is just as tentative and
promising as this Issue 0. The group is looking to reach out to independent
artists, apparently mostly in the video realm, and promote the same… The
(POB 174, East Tawas, MI 48730) is a tabloid that claims to be "Northeast
Michigan’s Funniest Paper" and is a collection of anecdotes and jokes somewhere
on the spectrum between "bumper snickers" and The Onion. Anyone from
Michigan’s "Up North" or the whole American population between rural
and "rurban" living will appreciate the humor from Church Bulletin
bloopers ("Remember in prayer those who are sick of our church…")
to humorous stories and funny lists ("Top 10 Signs You’re Being Stalked
by Martha Stewart")… Another tabloid Reviewer.
This free San Diego newsstand mag covers music, books, film and more. There
are always a lot eye-catching photos in each issue, even though they may be
black-and-white. For instance, Issue 316 has the artwork of Kate Wentz as well
as GG Allin and Cramps pictures. There is always something titillating to, like
the photos here of the working ladies of Club Exposé… Friction
sent in the debut issue of this thick, perfect-bound journal
of culture, music politics and more. This is the first of an annual print version
of the site’s content. Among the excellent articles is a story on Mexicans making
a living off trash heaps and traveling with South American revolutionaries.
There is a great interview with Joe Strummer as well as a series of short interviews
with indie rockers on what makes them tick and how they balance their music
and non-music lives…


Midnight Syndicate releases the first official Dungeons & Dragons role-playing
game soundtrack. This features orchestral instrumental music blended with sound
effects. This is the formula Midnight Syndicate uses in its other soundtracks.
In aiming to allow DMs and players to enhance their gaming experience, "Our
goal was to create the ultimate musical accompaniment to Dungeons & Dragons",
said Edward Douglas of Midnight Syndicate. "We wanted to create a disc
that was both a practical tool for players to use and an exciting musical journey
that fans can enjoy even when they’re not gaming." Ed Stark, Design Manager
for Dungeons & Dragons, says, "The D&D soundtrack is just amazing.
Every track really touches on something core to the Dungeons & Dragons experience.
You can cue up single tracks and run them to repeat for particular scenes, or
you can just let the music play in the background." For more info, visit
the official Midnight Syndicate Website.

to or Buy at


The reformed DKs invited Jello to perform at the 25th anniversary show in Los
Angeles that happened August 19. "We are absolutely serious in asking Jello
to rejoin the band on our anniversary," said Dead Kennedys bassist Klaus
Flouride at the time. "This is not a prank or a publicity stunt. Last evening
we sent word to Biafra and his representatives informing him of this offer.
We wanted to make sure he was informed in advance, so he knows that we are serious
in asking for him to participate. We’d love it, and I think the fans would love
it, if we could just bury the hatchet." Showing that the most important
of American political hardcore bands has not buried the hatchet, Biafra says
it all is a publicity stunt. Quoth Jello in his own press release, "To
put it mildly, this reeks of false advertising. They obviously aren’t serious
or they would have called me on the phone. Instead, their message came through
their lawyers and their publicist." Throwing in a few barbs, Biafra asks,
"What’s the matter, not enough Hot Topic bozo teens flocking to stuff cash
in their bikinis? Are they having that much trouble selling tickets to a bar
that holds less than 600 people? If they really want to, ‘bury the hatchet’,
why won’t they stop suing me? They have been dragging me through court for almost
six years now, and have refused attempts to compromise and settle. I feel sorry
for anyone duped into paying top dollar for a ticket because they heard, ‘I
might be there’. But I hardly think I’m ‘letting fans down’ by refusing to be
part of a nostalgia scam." In the release from the DKs, East Bay Ray suggests,
"This isn’t about nostalgia, there are serious problems in the world right
now and Dead Kennedys’ message of questioning authority and thinking for yourself
is more important than ever before. Maybe we could settle our differences and
play together while we are all still able to do so." While we may never
see a DKs reunion, even for a night, there is a new Dead Kennedys DVD that does
work for the nostalgic. It is distributed by Music
Video Distributors
and called In God We Trust, Inc. — The Lost Tapes.
This is video from original recording of In God We Trust, Inc. (The audio
masters deteriorated which meant the released EP was from a later session.)
Video of the recording is included with live footage from 1979 to the bands
penultimate performance with Biafra in 1986.

to or Buy at

DVD Reviews *********************


Waterfall Home Entertainment over a couple new, handsome distributed through
Music Video Distributors.
Both are subtitled The Journey and one is on Beatles, the other
on Elvis Presley. As would be expected, both are biographical and attend
to the highlights of the subject matter chronologically. Beatles: The Journey
has much in common with another Waterfall title, George Harrison: The Quiet
. That is, we see much of the same footage and Harrison’s death is a
prominent chapter. The story is from a British point of view. That is, instead
of a band springing fully formed upon the international scene with arrival in
America and an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, we focus on a hard-working
Liverpool band. Much is done to analyze early, pre-fame decisions like membership
changes and gigging. The Australian tour, the first real and significant international
Beatles event, gets more coverage than America. This is a well-thought package
of Beatles storytelling, but Elvis: The Journey is more slipshod. The
narrator is breathless and rushes through an overview of a rich and complicated
life in just over an hour. (Beatles: The Journey is nearly identical
in length but does not seem rushed at all and strikes the viewer as more complete.)
Most interesting here is the detailed look into Elvis the GI through footage,
photos and a revealing service buddy. Both editions feature audio CDs of interviews,
not music, as well as 32-page booklets on their subjects.

to or Buy Beatles: The Journey at

to or Buy Elvis: The Journey at

Albert Collins
In Concert

Master showman The Iceman puts on a dynamic, animate electric blues performance
in the 1988 concert recorded on this DVD. Collins’ band is a real feature of
the show and they stretch out on a lengthy intro before Collins takes the stage.
This intro and the rest of the show exhibit the sensible, understated blues
playing of second guitarist and John Mayall veteran Debbie Davies. The three-man
horn section is Chuck Williams and Sam Franklin on saxophones with Gabel Flemmons
on trumpet. There is a rhythm section of long-time Collins sideman on bass Johnny
B. Gayden (Son Seals, Johnny Winter) and drummer Soko Richardson (John Mayall,
Ike & Tina Turner). The closing number is "Frosty" with special
guest Duke Robillard. The title of this song is one of chill-sounding pieces
that led to him becoming The Iceman, although the playing is as hot on this
instrumental as on the rest of the set. Other standout tracks include "Mastercharge",
"Blackcat Bone" and the vocals duet with Davies "I Got that Feeling".
The set draws largely off the then-current Collins albums Cold Snap and
Ice Pickin’. It is amazing to watch Collins get crisp and precise notes
and accentuating string bends effortlessly out of guitar in his unique style
finger picking with a capo clamped high on the guitar neck. (4)

to or Buy at

Isou Hashimoto, Director
Shiryo No Wana 2 (Evil Dead Trap II)
Unearthed Films/Eclectic DVD

This Japanese horror flick with English subtitles nods to Hitchcock and Herschell
Gordon Lewis as it covers the spectrum of horror angles. Hitchcock is summoned
in a blood spraying shower killing and the Freudian motivations of a man with
a haunted past. Well seasoned with rough sex and bare skin, this mix of stylish
horror, female flesh and buckets of blood summons to mind the giallo
directors of Italy, particularly Lucio Fulci and also Hitchcock-inspired Dario
Argento. (3.5)

to or Buy at

The London Suede
Introducing the Band
Wienerworld Presentation/MVD

Goth pop band The London Suede found a perfect artistic match when they joined
forces with the now late filmmaker Derek Jarman. This richly featured DVD is
a celebration of the Jarman-Suede art of decadently large film backdrops on
stage and often-homoerotic imagery that enhances the band’s lyrical message.
This is two hours of concert footage with the backdrop films shown separately
with the songs as videos. There is also a lot of candid footage of the band
on tour in Europe. The tour footage dates from 1994 and also here is exclusive
archival film footage from the band’s personal collection. (4)

to or Buy at

CD Reviews *********************

Dengue Fever
Dengue Fever
Web of Mimicry Recordings

This sextet has an interesting sound featuring Cambodian vocalist Chhom Nimol
and saxophonist David Ralicke, who has toured in Beck’s band. While Nimol delivers
bright, multi-tracked vocals in her trebly Oriental inflection, Ralicke juxtaposes
nicely on saxophone for a well-rounded sound. Guitarist Zac Holtzman (Dieselhead)
provides angular, repeated guitar patterns that seem just suited to this Cambodian-indie
rock concoction. This was just the idea of Zac and his brother Ethan (Farfisa
organ) who went to Long Beach’s Little Phnom Penh Cambodian community to enlist
a singer that could deliver the vocal style they came to love from ’60s Cambodian
rock music. They lucked out when they found Nimol, a Cambodian pop start from
a long line of entertainers that has even performed for the royalty of Cambodia.
This album contains a mix of the Cambodian ’60s rock the band started covering
along with originals sung in Khmer. (4)

to or Buy at

The Remedy Session
The Remedy Session
The Redemption Recording Co./Recovery

This Fort Lauderdale trio offers a full sound, it could be a two-guitar ensemble
we are listening to here, but it is just the guitar, bass and drums trio. The
main vocalist is Chris Polito, but the tight female rhythm section of Alex Osuna
(drums) and Lori Marsh (bass) offers its own vocals often in chorus and this
adds to the songs. Dashboard Confessional fans may be interested in this because
Lori is married to Mike Marsh of that band and was thus able to hook Polito
up with Chris Carrabba’s vocal coach resulting in his polished delivery, unusual
in indie rock. (3)

to or Buy at

The Act
The Act
The Act

The Act calls its music "electro-glam-punk." This really surfaces
on such tracks as its ode to the modern man "Self-Sufficient Guy".
This gothic ode to the technophile bachelor is an ominous call from ’80s post
punk, a new wave visitation into the indie rock scene. Another unusual topic
is in "Love Slave", a song about a Russian mail order bride. This
4-song EP, produced by Bryce Goggin, just whets the appetite. The band is going
over great live in New York City, so we hope to hear more from them in the future.

Juicy Juju Records

Erin Harpe (vocals/guitar) leads this world-pop group with a bright, bouncing
sound drawing heavily on dub. Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth (Talking Heads/Tom
Tom Club) produced this post-dancehall Boston quartet sophomore release. This
lets you know the attention this ensemble of jubilant sunshine sounds is getting.
Lovewhip’s formula is to blend Africa highlife, soukous and juju with Jamaican
reggae and ska in dance-pop delivery that takes these tropical rhythms into
club accessibility. (4)

Stroking the Moon
Alternative Tentacles Records

This is a hard rock ensemble with a trio arrangement of violin, cello and drums.
Listen casually and you would think that the string instruments in this band
were guitar and bass, though. The band has a heavy, tight delivery with a lot
of heavy double-stops on the stringed instruments to summon guitar-like sounds.

to or Buy at

Feast of Wire

After two releases of thrown together tracks (Even My Sure Things Fall Through,
The Hot Rail
), Calexico regales us with a cogent, cohesive blend of their
pristine, melodic, multi-instrumental alt-country. The Tucson project of Joey
Burns, who studied classical music, and John Convertino (Giant Sand) continues
to forge a compelling, rich experimental sound out of Southwestern styles with
nods to Ennio Morricone’s spaghetti Westerns soundtracks, jazz, and surf. (4.5)

to or Buy at

Cooking Vinyl

Cracker’s David Lowery (Camper Van Beethoven) is upset with the music industry
and his reaction has been to put out Countrysides. This homage to honky-tonk
music was prepared sub rosa under the cover of the name Ironic Mullet in roadhouses.
Check out the QuickTime video of Lowery telling off a Virgin executive and you
will have an excellent visual aide to accompany the story of the corporate brush-off
in "Ain’t Gonna Suck Itself". This isn’t alt-country to much as redneck
country run through the Cracker mill. The album was done in spite of Cracker’s
label (Virgin) unwillingness to release it and "Ain’t Gonna Suck Itself"
summarizes that story and offers an anthemic chorus to the corporate music industry.

The Tone Sharks
Four / Five / Three
Louie Records

Percussionist and drummer Dave Storrs continues to be a Northwest wellspring
of exciting free jazz. This ensemble has two drummers and two bassists for an
incredibly fluid and limber rhythm section. The post-Mingus ensemble circles
melodies in a loose, cartilaginous fashion with vocalist Mark Bakalar snapping
in and out with avant-bop vocals. This is fun, free jazz culminating in the
casual experimentation and spontaneous composition of "Wake up Mark – Page
Keep Going – She Sells Shark Sales" as if we were hanging in rehearsal
room of The Tone Sharks. (4)

Midnight Spook-Show

Fans of Misfits and The Damned arise! Here is a new low-budget sound of low-budget
horror. The group even has the Elvis-esque lead vocalist and ghoulish chorus
of backing vocals that Misfits made so famous in its own B-movie homage. This
6-song EP is the group’s debut and it should be noted guitarist/vocalist Bobby
Calabrese is bassist in The Christy and Jim Calabrese (bass/vocals) once sang
for goth-metal project Cast of Shadows. What the trio (all Calabreses) lacks
in execution it more than makes up for in attitude and style. This is a promising
debut. (3.5)

Death Before Dishonor/Nourish the Flame
Taking it Back
Spook City Records

Boston band Nourish The Flame is a cookie-monster band of a metal/hardcore blend
with shades of grindcore. Nourish The Flame takes the first half of this split-CD
and each band has an intro and outro to its half. It is the instrumental intro
from Death Before Dishonor immediately following the outro from Nourish the
Flame that is the highpoint of the album. Death Before Dishonor has less tortured
vocals and does group vocals, but this vocal style in general has been done
so many times before that the long instrumental passage of the two tracks back
to back becomes the most interesting part. (3)

The Vacancy
A-F Records

Anti-Flag’s Chris #2 produces this album from Pittsburgh rock band The Vacancy.
While the vocalist seems somewhat strained to carry it out, this group does
a rowdy indie pop with a rooted, post-punk sound. The music is largely upbeat
with an early ’80s feel, but no keyboards. (The "no keyboards" is
a good thing, and there is plenty of loud, distorted guitar.) This is a debut
PL of seven songs from the group. (3)

to or Buy at

In This City
Touch & Go

Enon fuses trip-hop and breakbeat elements on this stylish electro-pop CD. The
title track is present in three different mixes spread out over the CD, which
gives an unfortunate repetitiveness to the album when listening all the way
through. The instrumental mix of "Murder Sounds" is a funky but noir
bit like dance music from Bauhaus. This standout track is also lightly seasoned
with dub elements. This enhanced CD contains three videos of songs off High
. (3.5)

to or Buy at

Third Grade Teacher
Third Grade Teacher
Pinch Hit Records

Are you hot for teacher? Sabrina Stevenson really is a third grade teacher in
the Los Angeles Unified School District, but is also hot to take over the world
fronting her dramatic post-punk rock band. (Check
out the audio interview I did with her.
) This is not your normal schoolmarm.
This singer with Blondie-inspired stage moves instructs the faithful on the
joys of herbal intake in "Roll it Up" with a message for legalization.
The music is powerful stuff and this is a great album worthy of much attention
for this hard-working L.A. band. (4)

to or Buy at

GG Allin and ANTiSEEN
Murder Junkies
TKO Records

This is the 10-track 1991 album of Allin with ANTiSEEN that defined what being
a murder junky is. While it is all bloodlust on the opening "Murder for
the Mission", one cannot but feel some comic relief on the rap-inspired
"I Love Nothing". This re-mastered album includes an eight-page booklet
of color photos. The murder is further beefed up with five bonus tracks from
the Violence Now 7″ as well as from GG’s final recording session in 1993
as GG Allin & The Carolina Shitkickers. Bursting at the seams with explicit
language, this is a continuation in TKO’s Vault of ANTiSEEN series brining
up from the vaults archival ANTiSEEN material. (4)

to or Buy at

David Thrussell
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack: The Hard Word
Metropolis Records

Thrussell’s soundtrack features a lot of tinkling piano offset by bass sounds,
recalling the chilly soundtrack to Halloween. This is largely subtle,
understated music that must work as both evocative and suspenseful for the film.
Thrussell, the man behind Snog, uses little that is electronic instead offering
a classically inspired score relying heavily on strings and hors. His only previous
film score was composed for Angst and this sophomore effort is very sophisticated
and mature. Hopefully Thrussell will do more scoring in the future. This is
an excellent album to play in empty buildings at night. (4.5)

to or Buy at

cEvin Key/Ken Marshall
The Dragon Experience
Metropolis Records

Having helped found Skinny Puppy and spent time in Doubting Thomas, Tear Garden,
and Download, cEvin Key is an icon of electronic music. This album reaches into
Key’s archives for works recorded and written 1984-5 to be reassembled into
the present form of a post-psychedelic headspace in 2003. It is Ken Marshall
(Skinny Puppy, Download) that helped refine this music into the weird and otherworldly
ride that it is. As a result, none of this sounds mid-’80s, meaning either Key
was way ahead of time or a lot of reworking was done for the pristine, thoroughly
contemporary results. Masterfully moody without being impressive, this is a
good record of slick beats with creepy sound bites (voices) from one of the
greats. (4)

to or Buy at

Mando Diao
Bring ’em In

The two-guitar indie rock band Mando Diao reaches its highpoint on this album
at "Paralyzed", a Rolling Stones-inspired rocked with urgent mobility
and horns. The indie rock ‘n’ soul on this album has the energy, enthusiasm
and unchained delivery of garage rock on the amped up tracks. The group offers
charming teen beat on such smiling, sunny numbers as "P.U.S.A.". This
is an exciting and promising debut from the Swedish band. (3.5)

to or Buy at

Daniel Patrick Quinn
Suilven Recordings

Jura is an "hour-long ambient drone piece", as described by
the composer. It is a detached, floating piece that slowly evolves, organically
offering oases of keyboard melody found on a start, entrancing desert of drone.
The high-pitched, low-level wail that is the background drone is an electronic
sound that recalls a church organ. Occasional reverberated sounds could be distant
bells. The sense evokes and empty, high-domed church dimly lit. (3)

From Monument to Masses
The Impossible in one Hundred Simple Steps
Dim Mak Records

This sophomore release from From Monument To Masses was recorded at Louder Studios
in San Francisco and engineered by Tim Green (The Fucking Champs, Nation of
Ulysses). Green has taken many opportunities to step away from these two bands
to engineer exquisite productions by Unwound, Tribes of Neurot, Melvins and
more. This is a very organic indie rock taking elements of ambient music and
breakbeats to go beyond a post-punk formula. The music has a lot of structure
and depth from incorporating these albums given an indie-progressive feel akin
to Godspeed You Black Emperor and Larval. This deep music resonates as an impression
of the subconscious. Rather than sing lyrics, the band chose to offer a smorgasbord
of soundbites from 9/11 news clips to Chomsky elucidating the causes of terrorism
to Bush snippets to Arundhati Roy and more. Thus the album succeeds as a single
opus (the tracks blend seamlessly) echoing the fitful dreams of world globally
obsessed with terrorism, its causes, effects and responses. (4.5)

to or Buy at

Out of Reach
EFA Medien / Marginal Talent

The hallmark representative of krautrock, Can inspired a cornucopia of musicians
with a spate of organic, experimental albums released on EMI and then re-released
on its own Spoon Records label. However, Out of Reach (1978) never came
out on Spoon. Holger Czukay had left Can at this time (to rejoin later), so
the vocalists we have are the Nigerian Rebop Kwaku Baah with bassist Rosko Gee,
both coming to Can from Traffic. Baah was instrumental in giving an African
touch to British pop and both musicians bring a percussive as well as pop influence
to the Can sound. The result is very reminiscent of Cream at times, like on
"Pauper’s Daughter and I". This song is followed very nicely by "November"
which guitarist Michael Karoli gives a very Latin feel, making this song sounds
like a loose jam to arise during a Santana concert. All seven of the tracks
are featured here digitally remastered by Dirk Buro. (4)

to or Buy at

David S. Ware String Ensemble
Thirsty Ear

It may be Ware’s string ensemble, but he is still blowing horn in this group.
He has three string players with him. One of which he is much identified with:
bassist William Parker. There is also Mat Maneri (viola) and Daniel Bernard
Roumain (violin). Drums come courtesy Guillermo E. Brown and Matthew Shipp is
on hand armed with a sonic creation powerhouse, the Korg Triton Pro X, an 88-key
music workstation sampler. However, Shipp supports the music strategically and
never overpowers taking more the approach of an electric, if treated, piano.
Ware appears almost as a sideman as the three string players create moody and
mysterious, serpentine sounds. The album is Ware compositions for the string
trio that Ware sensitively supports in his playing. (4.5)

to or Buy at

Primordial Undermind
The Shells of Revolution
Emperor Jones

Calling itself a "modern acid-rock collective" the Primordial Undermind
is part of the contemporary indie psychedelic movement. Guitarist Eric Arn of
Crystallized Movement leads the Austin band. The band offers fluid, shape shifting
sounds on the lysergic track that eschew a clean, modern sound for something
more rugged and analog. This guitar-led trip has more to do with Hawkwind then
Sonic Youth giving this band a ’60s throwback feel as evidenced on "There
is a Time". Someone have Phil Smee do an album cover for this group! (4)

Pansy Division
Total Entertainment!
Alternative Tentacles

After a five-year break in recording, Pansy Division makes its Alternative Tentacles
debut with Total Entertainment! Brimming over with renewed excitement
by the queercore pioneers, this album explodes with energy and a spectrum of
musical styles. I am sure the band gets the crowd to sing along to the anthemic
album opener "Who Treats You Right". The proudly gay quartet plays
rock with a big bottom suggesting Cheap Trick inspiration but with a post-punk
joy that suggests Blondie. (3)

to or Buy at

Various Artists
Shout, Sister Shout: A Tribute to Sister Rosetta Tharpe
M.C. Records

Mark Carpentieri has done the world a heap of good by creating such a compelling
and shining tribute to criminally forgotten gospel guitarist Sister Rosetta
Tharpe. Featuring Maria Muldaur and through much of her effort, this compilation
is a who’s who of female artists covering the Sister’s songs. This includes
Joan Osborne, Odetta, Michelle Shocked, Victoria Williams and more. Many of
the tracks feature the gospel-tinged blues of vocal group The Holmes Brothers.
This is an excellent collection of material dynamically delivered and running
the spectrum from the spiritual ("Two Little Fishes and Five Loaves of
Bread") to secular ("I Want a Tall Skinny Papa"). It was that
breadth of her art that caused such controversy in Tharpe’s career and overcoming
that adversity through her talents made her an inspiration to the talented artists
on this CD, like Bernice Johnson Reagon of Sweet Honey In The Rock who performs
"Precious Memories". (4.5)

to or Buy at

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