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Bob Mould, "The Last Dog & Pony Show"

Bob Mould gives us hissecond post-Sugar release, "The Last Dog & Pony Show" this week.Bob still has the gift of being a songster, and the songs are all solidon this release. "Megamanic," however gets my vote for the 'should havebeen left as a b-side' category as Mould twiddles the knobs on a'drum-n-bass' style music with Bob rapping over it (more frighteningthan amusing). If you're looking for a solid pop/rock record heavy onthe bright guitars and melody, this one's for you. 
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Godspeed You Black Emperor!, "F# A# infinity"

From Montreal, Canada comes my vote for best debut album of the year. godspeed you black emperor!,whose disc, "F# A# (infinity)" is the first CD issue of their debutrecord (previously on Constellation, now on Kranky). This nine-pieceband is described in their bio as drawing influencing sounds from EnnioMorricone, 17 Pygmies and Savage Republic, my impression is one of TheRachels and Angelo Badalamenti get an "spaghetti Western" soundtrackalbum produced by Steven Stapleton. There are three tracks in this +60minute disc, each song is of epic proportion with about five distinct"movements", the voices are only brief spoken-word, the otherinstrumentation consists of guitars, lush strings, bagpipes, drums andother various sound effects. Overall, a stunning debut record, by anystandards, and this is definately a band NOT to miss on their brieftour around the USA. Check the Kranky website for details.

11781 Hits

Big City Orchestra, "Collected Works of Od McUb"

If you've ever heard a CD by Big City Orchestra, you know just what notto expect. This disc consists of various people reading selections fromthe cut-up books of Od McUb, who, according to the liner notes (nudgenudge wink wink? or is it true?) spliced together various books whileliving in Holland in the years 1911-1918 to give himself something newto read. The Silverman, Ed Ka-Spel, and Monte Cazaza are among thosewho read selections. Ka-Spel's book describes how to gather ultrasoundsto keep in jars (be sure to have your mom pokes holes in the top first!)by digging in your backyard. All texts seem to have been recorded in asingle take, and boo-boos are left in. The Silverman, for instance,cracks up over `tri-cyclic antidepressants'. The music is quitevaried. Kan't-Spell and the Silver dude are not credited with providingmusic, and as far as I can tell, they didn't. But who can tell? Ican't. The music in some pieces adds sound effects to highlight thetext. In other pieces, the music gets Merzbow noisy and obscures thetext. The CD, as usual for BCO, ends with selections from asound-effects library. Make no mistake, this is DIFFICULT music. I'msure I won't listen often, but nonetheless, I like it.
11028 Hits

"A Tribute to Spacemen 3"


While I'm not big ontribute discs, this one has really grabbed my attention. "A Tribute toSpacemen 3" features some wonderful tracks like Mogwai's pretty versionof "Honey", Bardo Pond's heavy sonic "Call the Doctor", along withLow's haunting "Lord Can You Hear Me Call?" and Bowery Electric's"Things'll Never Be the Same". My only real beef with this is thatthere's too many songs from S3's "Playing with Fire" and nothing fromother great albums like "Recurring", leaving me wonder how muchSpacemen 3 these bands really listen to.

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