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  • Article

    Spirit of '96 - Last year showed pop still has more than a ghost of a chance

    How do you solve a problem like this introduction? How do you catch a cloud and pin it down? 1996 was many things--a flibbertigibbet, a will o' the wisp, a clown--but more than anything for music, it was a time of transition. With "alternative" rock ...

    by Matt Weitz on January 9, 1997
  • Article

    It was a very good year - 1996 lived up to its predecessor while presaging great things to come

    If 1995 was the year of the umpteenth British Invasion (Oasis, Blur, etc.) and the domination of the true underground by the amazing cross-pollinations of dance music, 1996 wasn't far behind in brilliance. In '96, the feeling that pop music still has...

    by Philip Chrissopoulos on January 9, 1997
  • Article

    Dallas' ace of bass - Life's a busy bed of roses for the Baron

    As Eric Halfvarson savors his plate of beef mole at cvila's restaurant on Maple Avenue, the Dallas-based international opera star ponders a dilemma: Although many bookings in the classical music business occur far in advance (he's presently working o...

    by Laurel Ornish on January 2, 1997
  • Article

    Out Here

    Electra glide in blue Small Spinning Ginny Last Beat Records There truly is nothing new under the sun anymore, and to describe a band by placing it in a handy niche is no longer tantamount to calling it unoriginal, but the only way to d...

    by Matt Weitz on January 2, 1997
  • Article

    Out There

    Sound and fury... Test for Echo Rush Anthem/Atlantic The think-rock of Rush has always been problematic. Early masterworks like 2112 (1976) succeeded even if they are lyrical Cliffs Notes for college freshmen. (2112 is based on Ayn Rand...

    by Alex Magocsi on January 2, 1997
  • Article

    The little punk that could - Benji Bollox moves from Dallas drudgery to London legend

    Looking quite the quintessential young punk rocker--bright red Docs, platinum spiked hair, dark and mangled clothing--Benji Bollox could well be mistaken for the typical misguided suburban kid, half-heartedly chasing after the mirage of a lifestyle 2...

    by Richard Baimbridge on January 2, 1997
  • Article

    You've got to hide your love away - Hard Night's Day to continue despite departure of founding member

    First, a clarification: It appears that when Street Beat relayed--rather breathlessly--that popular Beatles cover band Hard Night's Day had moved into the big time by taking off on a brief national tour, it was having its perineum tickled by new hand...

    by Matt Weitz on January 2, 1997
  • Article

    Roadshows

    You don't miss your water New Year's Eve gigs are plums for musicians and bands. Banner business nights, they usually pay quite well, and the band that lands one close to home can usually minimize road expenses while spending most of the holidays...

    by Matt Weitz on January 2, 1997
  • Article

    Water from a deeper well - TV special documents the building of Wrecking Ball

    Emmylou Harris has been a respected country artist since her first major label release, 1975's Pieces of the Sky. Arriving right in time for the advent of country-rock and enjoying a hefty batch of advance credibility through her association with Gra...

    by Matt Weitz on December 26, 1996
  • Article

    Roadshows

    A flat natural-born good timin' man "Every day I tell myself it's temporary," Gary Stewart sings at the beginning of his 1974 hit "Drinkin' Thing," a monument to self-delusion and dependency written by Wayne Carson, who also wrote another Stewart...

    by Matt Weitz on December 26, 1996
  • Article

    Great ambience - Getting Sofa-conscious with Roshonnda Red Quotet

    Out of the initial chaos of seemingly unrelated instrumental noodling that is slowly rising this Friday night at the State Bar, a sound is taking shape and gathering momentum. It's the sound of a 1957 Cadillac being started in Tibet on a cold day, fe...

    by Richard Baimbridge on December 26, 1996
  • Article

    Cruising the neon glories - The Vas Deferens Organization searches for the timeless

    "EEEeeeeeeuuuggghhhh!" Playing opposite to type, the local music writer is utterly sincere as she twists her face into a rictus of pure disgust. The effort--which pulls the corners of her mouth down and the cartilage around her nostrils up, and for ...

    by Matt Weitz on December 26, 1996
  • Article

    Out There

    Cult of personality Evita Cast recording/soundtrack Warner Brothers Records Whatever you may think of her personally, Madonna's credentials in the realm of popular music are unimpeachable. She began her career as a coy teen queen singin...

    by Arnold Wayne Jones on December 26, 1996
  • Article

    Out Here

    Queso que nada? Cosa Caliente The Recliners RCM Recordings One of the hardest things to get a sense of is humor, which many people confuse with mockery, forgetting that making fun has always been territory staked out by those who can't ...

    by Matt Weitz on December 26, 1996
  • Article

    In spite of his ignorance - Van Dyke Parks, the eternal odd man out, finally comes out to play

    Van Dyke Parks does not talk. He speaks, pronounces, proclaims, mumbles and grumbles, chuckles and chortles. But he does not merely talk to waste his words; every syllable has meaning, every breath great implication, every silence great weight. Weari...

    by Robert Wilonsky on December 19, 1996
  • Article

    Out Here

    Birds of a feather Deep Fantastic Blue Darden Smith Plump Records Baptist Hospital Boo Hewerdine Discovery/Warner Brothers Darden Smith and Boo Hewerdine are the Hardy Boys of the modern singer-songwriter set. The two pals--wh...

    by Rick Koster on December 19, 1996
  • Article

    Good vibrations - After a brief setback, local prodigy is again on track

    The apartment complex that Dewaylon McCoy, his mother Eva, and little sister Nashayla share isn't really scary--it's just a little bit overpacked and anonymous, one of those places that compel you to say "oh, it isn't that bad" when greeting first-ti...

    by Matt Weitz on December 19, 1996
  • Article

    Roadshows

    More than skin deep Now that Nashville is only slightly less beauty-conscious than the fashion industry--to make it in pop country these days, you gotta be a cute li'l ol' thang with a perfect figure, bright eyes, flawless hair, and a stunning sm...

    by Matt Weitz on December 19, 1996
  • Article

    Eighth place in your face - Some sticky PR won't hold Slow Roosevelt back

    The rain bombs out the street before Peter Thomas, and he wonders if the adverse weather will significantly affect the turnout this Saturday night. He and two bandmates, Aaron Lyons and Mark Sodders, stand under the overhang of the Dogstar, one of th...

    by Howard Wen on December 19, 1996
  • Article

    Out There

    The big bang Jesus Christ Superstars Laibach Mute Records Sinsational Pig Nothing/Interscope Records If the world were about to end in a tremendous bang, Laibach would be the first in line to write the soundtrack--such is th...

    by Philip Chrissopoulos on December 19, 1996
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