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Wednesday, January 30, 2002

Happiness

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Fridge is honest about its songs. Read a song title (“Cut Up Piano and Xylophone,” for example) and you know its composition. Happiness, the fourth release by the London trio, is straightforward and engaging. It sucks you in and keeps you interested with only a hastily scattered trail of...

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Alive to Every Smile

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

The story of the Trembling Blue Stars is an oft-told tale: Boy meets girl. Boy and girl fall in love. Boy and girl form OK jangle-pop band called the Field Mice. Boy and girl break up, as do Field Mice. Boy develops pathological addiction to girl, forms new band...

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When We Were Small

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

In his short story, “The Child Screams and Looks Back at You,” Russell Banks (that lucid conjurer of memory and redemption), addresses the nature of the state of forgiveness, protection and grace we bestow upon those we love, particularly family. In doing so, he zeroes in on the essence...

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Big Boi & Dre Present … OutKast

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

A little more than a year ago, Andre 3000 and Big Boi of OutKast christened themselves “the coolest motherfunkers on the planet.” That declaration of funkadelic supremacy was accurate, given that Stankonia, the album on which said declaration appeared, had more bounce to the ounce and assumption-smashing bravado than...

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Skin

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Problematic is the evolution of an out-of-control ego. Luckily, Melissa Etheridge found an appropriate career match for her psychosis. The woman boils in a stew of obsession — fanatical on obtaining, maintaining and regaining (once lost) the possession of a lover. This monomania verges on ostracizing the audience because...

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Gotcha!

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

I’m swiftly becoming a fan of this guy. Without descending into the no man’s land of so-called smooth jazz (a music that should never have been associated with any form of jazz whatsoever), Jamaican-born Ranglin plays a style of music on his guitar that is easy on the ear...

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Pause

Posted By on Wed, Jan 30, 2002 at 12:00 AM

With the entrance of Fridge onto the scene in 1997, a virtual cult emerged around the diced, spliced, then refabricated sounds the trio had to offer. Kieran Hebden, the one man behind the project Four Tet, and also a member of Fridge, set out on his own path alongside...

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Wednesday, January 23, 2002

Soap

Posted By on Wed, Jan 23, 2002 at 12:00 AM

The High Strung doesn’t exactly sound like an uptight rock band. High … probably. Girl problems … yeah, man, for sure. But that doesn’t seem to get this band down. At the end of the day, it seems a little sense of humor and a small but significant dose...

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Sketches of My Culture

Posted By on Wed, Jan 23, 2002 at 12:00 AM

On the opening track of Sketches of My Culture, “The Journey,” Harvard professor Cornel West follows the “guttural cries” of the middle passage to the musical “joy” — from gospel to hip hop — that has sustained African-Americans through continued racist encounters. Amid spoken-word segments and musical thumbnails, West’s voice,...

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Amethyst Rock Star

Posted By on Wed, Jan 23, 2002 at 12:00 AM

Nuyorican poet and American recording artist Saul Williams' new album, Amethyst Rock Star, works on all the levels that Cornel West’s opus does not. Amethyst, produced by Rick Rubin (Beastie Boys, Johnny Cash), is an angry, psychedelic, conflicted monster of a hip-hop record filled with drum ’n’ bass breakbeats, upside-down...

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