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  • Article

    Big drummer boy - Funland's Will Johnson steps out from behind the kit

    When his phone rings at the allotted time--precisely at midnight, as per his request--Will Johnson is fast asleep. His voice groggy, his words at first a random mishmash of syllables and hazy thought, Johnson explains he got home from the library ear...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 19, 1995
  • Article

    Out there

    Heartland, but no soul Walk On John Hiatt Capitol Records A perennial journeyman on his fourth label in 20-plus years, Hiatt has seen his shots at fame come and go; once a new-waver pegged as the Elvis Costello of the Heartland, later r...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 19, 1995
  • Article

    Smash or trash? - Pumpkins double the pleasure and pain on Mellon Collie

    "I'm a martyr. It's part of my insanity." --Smashing Pumpkins' Billy Corgan in the December 1994 Spin Billy Corgan is not the average, anonymous and faceless Rock Star. His offstage persona can't be separated from his music because who he is in...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 19, 1995
  • Article

    Roadshows

    Diva do and don't Since departing the Supremes in 1970 and parting company with the talents of Motown's hit-making songwriting factory (Holland-Dozier-Holland), Diana Ross has soared upon and sunk beneath the crashing waves of Stardom. She has b...

    by James Mardis on October 19, 1995
  • Article

    Out Here

    Heavy, not metal Love American Style Caulk One Ton Records Caulk's debut EP Learn to Take wasn't metal, not really, though the novice could mistake it for such; it was actually pure noise heaped upon impure noise, and if there was an ac...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 19, 1995
  • Article

    Out Here

    Looking back, forward Rollin' Blues The Hash Brown Band Browntone Records If rock and roll's stuck in low gear, if jazz is for snobs, if country's gone pop and pop's gone south, if R&B's turned into barber-shop-quartet-soul, then the el...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 12, 1995
  • Article

    Roadshows

    Scary Monster The Concept Album is a frightening beast that allows an artist to live out his most self-indulgent tendencies; if the pop-musician writes short and self-contained songs that are meant to tell a story, the creator of the Concept Albu...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 12, 1995
  • Article

    Beating meat - "Taz" Bentley explains why he left the Rev for Tenderloin

    It was early in January of 1995, and way too early in the morning, when Tenderloin lead singer Ernie Locke received the call. His head groggy with sleep and the irritation that someone would ring him up at 4 a.m., Locke answered the phone to discover...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 12, 1995
  • Article

    Heart-shaped box - Velvet Underground set charts the still-unknowable

    Critics like to say the Velvet Underground is the second most influential band of the '60s behind the Beatles, which is fine enough if you believe the Rolling Stones or the Who or even the Jefferson Airplane didn't spawn their own evil brood in equal...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 12, 1995
  • Article

    Out there

    The artist still known The Gold Experience Prince Warner Bros./NPG Written off as dead or dying by those who proclaimed him a genius just a few years ago, Prince (pronounced "Prince") is now just another R&B artist who releases albums w...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 12, 1995
  • Article

    Love indie style - The new Caulk album signals make-or-break time for Aden Holt's One Ton label

    Aden Holt stretches out his 6-foot-9 frame on the floor, lying on his back with his Subway dinner in his lap and his head propped up on the back of a futon. Underneath shocks of messy blond hair, clad in his homemade "Deep Blow Someone" T-shirt and b...

    by Arnold Pan on October 12, 1995
  • Article

    Roadshows

    Eat the impeach Yet another of modern-rock radio's sudden one-hit wonders, the Presidents of the United States rose from obscurity in Seattle to ubiquity on radio and television without a moment's notice. It's a funny thing about so-called "alte...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 5, 1995
  • Article

    Out There

    Sucking in the '70s Exit the Dragon Urge Overkill Geffen Records If Saturation was the good KISS album Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley never made because they couldn't, then Exit the Dragon is the bad album KISS made over and over again. ...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 5, 1995
  • Article

    Mad about the boy - A tough, witty, and wicked Boy George dismisses the memories

    Boy George has about a half hour to spare on the way back to his New York hotel, but he sounds as though the morning has treated him well. Speaking on a phone from the back of his limousine, he laughs often and speaks bluntly, not hesitating to defle...

    by Jimmy Fowler on October 5, 1995
  • Article

    Dance this Mess around - They're punk, they're pop, and in love with teen queens and Marcia Brady

    The so-called punk revolution of the '70s has given way to the punk ad campaign of the '90s: Mohawks and green hair and tattoos are back (did they ever really go away?), short and sharp songs are the order of the day, and "anarchy" has become synonym...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 5, 1995
  • Article

    Out Here

    Growing pains Shoegazer Buck Jones Independent release A band that has changed lineups more times than Johnny Oates' Texas Rangers--they have been, at various times, a four-piece with two female singers, a three-piece with a male and a ...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 5, 1995
  • Article

    Rock and rollercoaster - After mulling its future for two years, Funland releases its first album

    "We're not looking for a shot at the big time. We just want to make great music." Funland singer-guitarist Peter Schmidt says he likes to do interviews, if only because they force him to think about the things he has often relegated to memory. A...

    by Robert Wilonsky on October 5, 1995
  • Article

    Strait to hell - George Strait saved country music. Then he killed it

    Country radio does not exist. It's a misnomer, a myth, the great lie--Top 40 hiding behind a Resistol hat and a pair of Tony Lamas. Country music itself is an antiquated term, a marketing tool--pop music hiding behind twangs and pedal steel guitars a...

    by Robert Wilonsky on September 28, 1995
  • Article

    Roadshows

    You're a poet and you know that Heather Nova is a woman of pedigree - claims the Velvet Underground and Neil Young as childhhood heroes, shares bills with Pearl Jam Neil Young and Pavement and Bob Mould, records with sometime-U2 producer Youth. ...

    by Robert Wilonsky on September 28, 1995
  • Article

    Roadshows

    Jeff's boogie There was a time when only one man in the world generated guitar sounds that millions of musicians now take for granted. Though John Lennon plucked the first note of feedback ever produced on vinyl ( intro to "I Feel Fine" in 1964)...

    by Josh Alan Friedman on September 21, 1995
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