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Wednesday, June 24, 1998

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Posted By on Wed, Jun 24, 1998 at 12:00 AM

Release the hounds! Livonia's favorite son, Warren Defever, has put out a six-song EP to satiate his dedicated followers. While not as brilliantly as on HNIA's last full-length disc, Stars on E.S.P., Defever continues to churn out little quirky rock gems that sound as if they have been disassembled and then put back together with chewing gum and spit.

Ever the insular pop genius, Warren allows himself to rock out a bit harder than usual on this batch of tunes. Closer in spirit to HNIA's live shows than anything recorded in the privacy of Defever's home studio, this release showcases his '70s guitar style and the sweet vocal contributions of Ms. Erika Hoffman. From the bayou rock interpolated with an AM-radio arrangement on "Baby You Feel Me Up" to the slide guitar break on "Hot Tonite," Defever's ax-handling is deft and to the point.

Unfortunately, the songs where Warren sings are the least compelling. Still, the guy does come up with a realistic prog-rock excursion on the song "Wet." Cramming as many great ideas as possible into these half-dozen tunes was an ambitious but somewhat confusing move. Just when Warren finally gets things going, this darn thing is over (the last tune is a killer). If you can't wait for the next full-length CD and you already have the last one, come and get it!

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