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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Edward Murphy

Posted By on Wed, Aug 6, 2008 at 12:00 AM

Ann Arbor's Charlie Slick has developed a live show reputation locally that's now bordering on "legendary." Glitter ... bubbles ... lights ... chaos ... and, most importantly, dancing. Those are the elements one will find at a CS show, where Slick's maniacal energy has been known to get even the most introverted hipster shaking it on the floor. The album title is probably more a nod to the comic actor's brief foray into music (as in "Party All The Time") than his movie roles. After all, Slick has a knack for taking the cheesiest elements of '80s pop and new wave and making them sound fun and even relevant. This is due in large part to the earnestness behind Slick's tawdry synth-beats. Yes, songs like "Let's Have a Sushi Party" are as double entendre-filled as the title suggests. But such naughty bits share time with tracks like "Allan," a song that borrows heavily from early Depeche Mode and finds Slick pleading to a friend who's moved away: "Allan, move back to Michigan, don't you want to be my friend again?/'Cause when we talk on the phone, oh, it seems like you understand."

The album's 32 minutes go by in a flash. In fact, it's over before one can say, "More sushi, please!" Does the disc capture the sound and feeling of a Charlie Slick show? No. But that would be impossible, regardless of budget, talent or time. What the album does do is give fans a memento — something to tide them over between "Charlie Slick Experiences." The local "fun police" will undoubtedly hate this record, but Charlie Slick won't care. And if any of those folks should accidentally wander into one of his live shows and hear him sing, "Let's get down baby, we'll get down baby ...," their feet will probably obey, despite themselves.

CD release party Saturday, Aug. 9, at The Elbow Room, 6 S. Washington St., Ypsilanti; 734-483-6374. With Lightning Love and Tonight.


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