Record Reviews: June 1991
National Music Reviews
Dinosaur JR – Green Mind
The first I heard of Dinosaur JR was their cover of The Cure’s “Just Like Heaven.” I thought Robert Smith had redone the song, making up for the mistake he’d done that first time. I was dead wrong.
Now the band has left SST for a “major” and had a huge hit in Europe with their single “The Wagon.” Although America has yet to show as much enthusiasm in the band, Dinosaur Jr. is growing up fast and with Green Mind has shown they won’t soon be extinct.
Green Mind finds the Jr.’s mixing rockin’ tunes with balladish sings. J. Mascis’ voice is very distinct. Sometimes he doesn’t sound on key and he squeaks, scratches and rattles his vocal chords, but this only make Dinosaur Jr.’s songs more fresh and signature. The basic guitar and bass sounds are clean and straightforward but there’s always another guitar in the background making unique noises and adding another dimension to the songs.
Now that Dinosaur Jr. are on Sire they have a chance for more people to listen to their music and get some of the attention and success they deserve.
Don’t miss them at The Pompadour, Tuesday, June 11th, with Seattle rock gods Nirvana.
Lydia Lunch – Cow (Conspiracy of Women)
“If you can’t give good head, you can’t do anything, baby, so you better practice up tonight before you come to my hotel room, you know what I’m saying?”
Lydia Lunch has put her musical career on hold for ventures into writing and spoken word. Her latest release, Conspiracy of Women, is a verbal assault on her listeners. Lunch’s startling frankness is not for the easily offended. She makes shocking revelations about herself and others in a candid and unashamed way. Lunch has a sharp wit that offsets her controversial ramblings. When she speaks of champagne enemas, cock rockers, group sex, coke and the excess of the California lifestyle, there is something humorous behind the serious point she is drawing.
Lunch celebrates the excesses of life and living to one’s fullest potential while condemning a male dominated world of warfare and desolation to be a feminist. She’s more of a female terrorist.
Lunch issues a battlecry for women especially to stand and take hold on modern society.
Man-hater or humanity-lover? Lunch leaves that for the listener to decide. If you’re unsure of your sexuality or threatened by strong women, the COW might attack your sensibilities. Otherwise, open your mind and let Lunch’s ideas fill your head. No write up can do Lunch’s performance justice. So buy the CD and experience it for yourself.
Spirea X – Chlorine Dream
The rave sound is all the rage in England, long ago replacing house as the in fad. As bands like Happy Monday, 808 State, Charlatans, etc., continue to gain popularity now in America, a new, mulated rave arises from within the walls of 4AD. If screams from the latest two Wolfgang Press singles, but flows more subtly from the first release by Spirea X.
Following leader Jim Beatty, formerly of Primal Scream, Spirea X garnered much critical attention and was sought out by numerous record companies before choosing to sign up with 4AD. Chlorine Dream is the first of three EP releases before their full length album comes out in the Fall. The second, Speed Reaction, is now out as well.
Chlorine Dream is three moody yet groovy songs. The title song is a fast rave beat with beautiful harmonies layered over guitars and keyboards and a number of instruments and sounds. These are all layered over the beat which holds the song together and keeps it from becoming too otherworldly.
“Spirea Rising” and “Risk” are two slow groove instrumental tracks with ethereal voices rising and falling throughout the music.
Spirea X is a promising new signing from 4AD and shows the label’s commitment to continual forward movement. Pick one up today.
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