Nail in metal's coffin
That letter from ASKA's entertainment lawyer, Paul Webb, was hilarious ["A kick in the ASKA," Letters, April 25]. Obviously trying to make himself look good by somehow putting a shine on shit, Webb blames writer Michael Corcoran for trying to prejudice the public into hating metal and hard rock.

Thanks, but trust me--we already do. Where is the Basement? Where is Z-Rock? Headbanger's Ball? On The Rocks? Thankfully, long gone. Webb challenges Corcoran to come to the band's "welcome home" show and "stand in awe of the band's sheer blah, blah, blah, whatever..." ("Welcome home?" How about "Stay Away" party?) I challenge Michael to go to the show and try and restrain himself from jumping up on stage and beating the shit out of their lead singer on sheer principle.

As the "hair bands" of the '80s settle into becoming the "wig bands" of the '90s, more and more we--the innocent public--tend to get caught in the crossfire of their loser rhetoric and severely misguided marketing. We're forced to sit there and try not to laugh while the Dee Sniders and Jethro Tulls and the Vince Neils of the world continue to pollute our surroundings with bad records produced by Rick Rubin, Starplex-packaged wheelchair comeback tours, and blowjob interviews on Howard Stern talking about how the old days were a blur.

These geriatric poodle-people (and their lawyers) just refuse to let go of the old days, still doing whatever it takes to try and convince us that real rock and roll is only created by overweight men in patent leather, Spandex jumpsuits, and fake biker gear. In reality, they're trying to fulfill their end of the unreasonable, long-term contracts they made back when it looked like that kind of music might stick around for a while.

Like AA counselors, these guys brag about the band being (like The Scorpions, Weezer, Ozzy, and Aerosmith) drug-free. How then could they possible be any good? Rock and roll without drugs is like...well, sports or TV without drugs. It's almost hypocritical. Maybe drugs are what ASKA really needs to catch up to this decade. I suggest speedballs or Ritalin.

Surely as "they near their major label deal" (a lawyer's words, go figure), they'll also realize they're just that much closer to the cut-out bin. Then it'll be time to break up or change styles again; back to something already worn out, like grunge or fake mall punk. They got their Observer Music Awards nomination by default--the Guitar Center herd seems to be really thinning itself out--in a category that shouldn't even exist anymore, anyway.

I think we should listen to the lawyer and all go to their show when they get back, to stand in awe of our local tribute to Spinal Tap. One day we'll all be able to say, "ASKA? What a dumb name. Were they a metal band? Oh, yeah--the Quiet Riot look-alikes." Oh, and remember--lawyers always tell the truth. It's their job. Here's hovering over tour backstage deli platter.

Jeff Liles

Picking wisely
Gee whiz! It must be nice for the Observer staff to know that no matter how many stories they run exposing hate crimes, police brutality, and racial discrimination, their publication is sure to labeled "anti-minority" the first time they criticize anyone who isn't a white Anglo Republican ["In brown and white," Letters, April 18].

Oh, por favor! Can we get real? I don't pretend to like every item I read in the Observer; in fact, many items--your anti-Catholic cheap shots, for example--I find quite tasteless. But on most minority issues, I find myself agreeing with the Observer more often than not. And one need only glance at a politically gutless publication like La Fuente to realize that a more "minority-friendly" Observer might not necessarily be an improvement.

I must confess that I would like to see more articles about Latinos in the Observer--but not if the end result is the journalistic equivalent of cotton candy. And, yes, Barbara Renaud Gonzalez, I do support Victor Morales in the U.S. Senate race. I just feel we Latinos have better things to do in this political climate than to pick fights with everyone who doesn't agree with us 100 percent. Besides, we need all the political allies we can get.

Rogelio Mendoza Jr.

Gooooal! Goooal! Gooooal!
David Pasztor's spoof of the Arlington Morning News was not only hilarious but fairly accurate as well ["Good morning, Arlington," April 25]. But beyond that, we at the U.S. Air Hockey Association appreciate the author's dropping the tongue-in-cheek sarcasm long enough to give our sport a well-deserved plug. Consciously or not, Pasztor must have been aware of the connection between Arlington and great air-hockey.

Wil Upchurch, a resident of Arlington, is well-known in air-hockey circles nationwide, having finished second in the 1995 U.S. International Championships in Colorado. Upchurch put his current No. 3 world ranking on the line at the '96 Nationals in Houston last month, and in addition to Upchurch, several other pro-level players call Arlington home.

Mark Robbins
Fort Worth

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