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  Listen Up! 11/27/02 Listen Up!

Wednesday, Nov. 27

Various Artists, “Musiques d’Asie,” Naïve Records. The title is French for Asian Music, in case you don’t parlez-vous much. I slapped in disc two, full of amazingly beautiful, lyrical Chinese music, and a whole lot of Indonesian stuff, including the ever-popular percussive gorgeousness of gamelan music. I haven’t listened to this sort of stuff in a long time. It really is extraordinary.

Slobberbone, “ Slippage,” New West Records. Slobberbone sound like a sloppy version of the Wallflowers, without the melodic interest that may imply. These guys learned to play well enough to pick up a few bucks in bars, but not well enough to justify breaking out of them. Their attempt at singing the Bee Gees “To Love Somebody” as if it were an outtake from “Exile on Main Street” may be ambitious, but their reach is ridiculously far from their grasp.

Roots, “Phrenology,” MCA Records. I only heard a couple cuts, but they are magnificent. These guys are mixing hip hop with contemporary dance music, and they’re pushing their sound into directions that are beautiful and entirely different from what they’ve done before and what anybody else is doing. I don’t know about you. I can’t keep up with all the incredible music coming out these days. This record screams at me to pay more attention.

--Steve Pick



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