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  Listen Up! 7/8/03 Listen Up!

Tuesday, July 8

Various Artists, “Jazz & the Sunday Times,” Concord Special Products. Nothing screams Charley Tuna more than pictures of an upper middle class woman sitting in a breakfast nook wearing a white cotton bath robe while reading the Sunday New York Times. It’s not about good taste, it’s about tasting good. Remember that when you listen to this collection of pleasant but never exhilarating jazz from the Concord label. There are some great players here, but if you want them to taste good, i.e. play the kind of music that made Stan Getz, Clark Terry, Art Farmer, and Ernestine Anderson, to name just four, truly worth knowing, you’ll dig a lot deeper than this overly mellow album. I know that bath robe probably feels good, but it’s a little too perfect, know what I mean?

Queens of the Stone Age, “Songs For the Deaf,” Interscope Records. There are Vintage Vinyl employees aplenty who swear this band is the greatest thing in the world. I think they are occasionally catchy, infrequently offensive, and mostly no big deal. Great rhythm section on this one, with Dave Grohl playing drums. The songs just lay there much of the time, though.

--Steve Pick

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