CD Reviews

Good News From The Next World
Simple Minds

If the band had put this one out in the mid-eighties when their style was thought of as tolerable, some washed-out thirty-somethings might have enjoyed it. Unfortunately for them and fortunately for us, time has marched onward, and this type of shit just doesn't cut it anymore. Pared down to Jim Kerr and guitarist/keyboardist Charlie Burchill the band foregoes drastic change (something that probably would have been out of their league anyway) and has decided to mire themselves in the glory days. Save your money on this one.
-Tom Cornell

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Dumb And Dumber
Various Artists

If the movie wasn't dumb enough for you, check out the soundtrack.
-Brian Bruxvoort


Pop music rarely sounds this consistently gorgeous and untampered. Listening to Ivy's quiet, precise pop, it's hard not to slip into a sunny place in your mind, where every day is a piña colada. Singer Dominique Durand's careful voice is the focal point of the tunes. Her sweet, French accent has an immediate effect, while the band's sense of mood and melody are uncanny. The band writes nifty jagged pop tunes that rival the stuff that made Velocity Girl's debut such a big cahoopa. And best of all, they can change up from the catchy hooks of "Don't Believe A Word" to the evocative textures of "Shallow." Realistic is an album that reveals itself more with each listen. It quietly demands attention, and it deserves it.
-Tom Cornell

Yes Darling, but is it Art? (Early Singles and Rarities)
Television Personalities

Up to this point, these recordings were extremely rare and terribly expensive as original singles. The Television Personalities helped pioneer the British punk movement, not by spiking their hair up and screaming for anarchy, but by recording their music independently and by being exceptional songwriters. Their songs were simple, perfect gems and have stood the test of time to finally be re-released on this brilliant compilation.
-Brian Bruxvoort

Body Of Water

Fabric have long been gaining momentum in the British underground. Their hard-core sound is a slap in the face to the trendy Brit sounds of Suede and Stone Roses. Metallic guitar riffs dominate the mix with screaming vocals writhing underneath, but a respect for lyrics and melody is there too. And because of that, Fabric have a lot of potential. If you can't find the album in your local record store, you can order it from Doghouse Records at PO Box 8946, Toledo, OH 43623.
-Tom Cornell

The Great Subconscious Choice
K's Choice

With a grandiose title like "The Great Subconscious Choice," you know, you're in for trouble, and the songs here are about what you'd expect. This folk duo owes a lot to the Indigo Girls and Tori Amos for their angst ridden, philosophically waxed lyrics and cheesy melodies. The effect is similar to eaten leftovers of a bad meal.
-Brian Bruxvoort


For Barkmarket, Lardroom is a teaser for what's to come. The five song ep is a predecessor to the next Barkmarket full length, slated for spring release. Barkmarket's sound is loud and ferocious. The band's big guitar noise plows through these five tunes relentlessly from the opener, "I Drown" straight to "Johnny Shiv." On the rest of Lardroom, Barkmarket has finally captured their potent live sound on tape. Look for 'em to make plenty of noise with the full album.
-Tom Cornell

A Pert Cyclic Omen
Electric Company
Onion/ American

The Electric Company is Medicine guitarist Brad Laner's ambient project. If you're familiar with Laner's feedback sculpting guitar style, the concept of this disc shows a lot of promise. Unfortunately, the Electric Company concentrates too much on Laner's skills as a beat looping guru, resulting in a quiet, repetitive album that will only put you to sleep.
-Brian Bruxvoort

As The World

Seems 70's progressive rock is coming back in style again, as it does every five years or so. Where British bands like Palace, IQ and Marillion spearheaded the last movement by following the blueprint left by early Genesis, this time, its Echolyn that's striking a chord with prog-fans. Their style and mission are best described by their tune 'The Cheese Stands Alone', a sort of tribute to the durability of prog-rock. There are plenty of music nerds out there who are craving to hear more of the prog-rock style. Echolyn should safely deliver this hermit following through their arduous post-pubescent period. It's impossible to determine what this eccentric audience likes, so make up your own assessment of the album.
-Tom Cornell

King Jesus
Brain Disc

Vodka vocalist Jenny Wade has one of those voices that takes some getting used to. It's not dainty or pretty. It's more of a guttural release that strains over the music. The music itself is an incredible sprawling mass of guitar wash and beats that bring to mind the Velvet Underground jamming with the Jesus Lizard. Pretty neat stuff.
-Brian Bruxvoort

The People's Fuzz

Return with us to those trippy, dope-fueled days of the 1970's. Flowerhead openly admit to being a throw-back to a bygone era, which the kids today are growingly fixated on. This latest batch of songs from the gang are ripe pickings for long summer days spent cruising around to nowhere stoned off your rocker. If you're not in that condition, forget about it, you'll be bored with The People's Fuzz.
-Tom Cornell

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