Other Music New Release Update
August 8, 2001

In This Week's Update:

Outsiders reissue
Saturday Night Fish Fry: New Orleans Funk & Soul comp. 2
Arling & Cameron
Da Beatminerz
Makoto Kawabata (fr. Acid Mother's Temple)
De Facto
Cut Chemist/Madlib single
"peteri'mflying" French electronica comp.
Gary Usher Brian Wilson tribute
Karsh Kale
Brazilified comp.
The Wire August 2001

Bertrand Burgalat's "Quadrille" soundtrack

Just In: "Club Tricatel"

Featured New Releases:

THE OUTSIDERS "CQ" (Pseudonym, Netherlands) CD $14.99
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Our pal John just sold an original vinyl copy of this album for
$400, we kid you not. But that's not the reason you should
purchase this long-awaited reissue. (Besides sporting five bonus
tracks, this CD is worth way more than that...) The Outsiders were
without question THE best rock'n'roll band Holland ever produced
(Group 1850 were every bit as mighty but more on the Psych tip),
and in our opinion, one of the best Garage Rock bands ever. The
Outsiders played scuzzy, amphetamine-fueled R&B that had the
gritty snarl of The Stones, the propulsive rhythmic firepower of
The Who, and the primitive minimal precision of Music Machine. But
The Outsiders as Holland's band-of-the-moment were declining in
popularity following their eponymous first album. Personnel
changes and their inability to meet their teeny-bopper fanbase's
teeny-bopper expectations had taken their toll. So they sucked it
up, regrouped and unleashed "CQ" on an unsuspecting world. "CQ"
("Seek You", phoneticians?) was released in 1968 and was their
insanely ambitious attempt to do the Concept Album thing ala "S.F.
Sorrow", "Sgt. Pepper's", and the like, only a lot darker and way
heavier. Outsider frontman Wally Tax and Love's Arthur Lee were
perhaps the only songwriters of their day who could absorb the
disparate strengths of The Kinks and The Byrds and radiate back
something entirely original: introspection with cryptic lyrics
that SWUNG. In "CQ", we also hear the origins of sounds that would
much later characterize post-punk icons like Swell Maps and
Television Personalities. (Compare The Outsiders' 'Misfit' with
Swell Maps' 'Let's Build A Car'; tell us 'You're Everything On
Earth' doesn't conjure TVP's 'The Painted Word' or even classic
David Bowie.) A truly visionary album that absolutely explodes from
your speakers. Should director Wes Anderson ever mount a sequel to
his superb film "Rushmore", he would do well to exploit the
undeniable strength of "CQ" in the same way he utilized the
underheard classics by The Creation. Welcome, dear friends, to
the next level. Highest recommendation! [DH/JG]

[V/A] "Saturday Night Fish Fry: New Orleans Funk & Soul" (Soul Jazz, UK) CD/LP $18.99/$18.99
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Creole soul and Cajun(que) funk dredged from the swampy
underground, history inscribed in even just the names of the
songwriters: Toussaint, Quezergue, Creaux, Batiste, Bocage, etc.
22 songs of the city as the fermented crossroads of cultures:
French, Haitian, African, Native American, etc. Everything flows
in call and response musical sums, hiccuping rhythm sections,
planking percussion, vivid ghosts of ragtime and barrelhouse
piano, jazz's godfather looming over the proceedings. This comp,
collecting tracks from the late '50s to the late '60s (all primal
and funky, a few quite ahead-of-their-time). From great versions
of classics (the Dixie Cup's stark 'Iko Iko'), to rare tracks from
solid pioneers (Lee Dorsey, Eddie Bo, Dr. John, Meters) and lush
funky soul mavericks (Betty Harris, Wild Magnolias) to the super-
obscure 45 (Salt, Oliver Morgan, Bobby & the Heavyweights, more).
This disc is the best collection of this stuff out yet (beats Vol.
1, even) and has a stout 22 songs on its slim silver surface. The
ejected adjective "rockin'!!!!!!" only tells but a fraction of the
story. [RE]
CD  //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=502632810053&refer_url=email
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PHOENECIA "Brownout" (Schematic) CD/LP $12.99/$12.99
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It's a long-held belief that all music emanating from Miami can,
sooner or later, be reduced to a simple connection with early 2
Live Crew, MC Ade, Pretty Tony, Dynamix II, and other pioneering
Bass artists. Those prescient records made possible a generation
of electronic music. Phoenecia, with "Brownout", are gradually
shedding these influences. Their title refers to a period when
power stations reach a period of critical demand, electrical
devices run at a slower rate and street lights covering the
Southern Florida freeways are lit by what look like 40-watt bulbs.
A decisive change for Phoenecia can be heard in the slow,
contemplative way in which the record moves, almost as if it were
being powered by a 40-watt generator itself. And, most
surprisingly, the textures and shapes of "Brownout" have a far
greater affinity for classic '70s roots dub than the Roland
Corporation's range of standard techno equipment. Jazz drummer Max
Roach once asked whether the beat lies in the drum strikes or
between them. This album is an electronic dub record where the dub
implements are put to use in between the beat. They slip into the
cracks, peer around, then disappear again. Metallic baffles sound
like a submarine emitting a faint sonar pulse at 200 fathoms into
the yawning gaps of the Marianas Trench. While certain sound
features remain constant, others are restlessly shifting and
squirming, like sea creatures. "Brownout" is, without doubt,
Phoenecia's magnum opus, the place where the ideas found in their
preceding 12"s come to full fruition. [TH]
CD  //perl-bin/OM/CD_Add_To_Cart.cgi?sku=65067000182&refer_url=email
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ARLING & CAMERON "We Are A&C" (Emperor Norton) CD/2xLP $14.99/$14.99
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For their fourth album as Arling & Cameron, the versatile Dutch
duo perfect their "All-In" approach to music, incorporating a
myriad of new styles into their songs while gently parodying the
genres which they imitate. As you can imagine, they don't take
anything too seriously -- proudly proclaiming themselves (in a
hilariously awful white-guy rap) "two fruits from the musical
tree" on the album's title cut. They go on to tackle everything
from Teutonic electro-pop on 'Dirty Robot' (featuring icy-cold
vocals by Stereo Total's Francoise Cactus) to R&B balladry on the
deliciously sappy 'Born In June'. Over 14 tracks they destroy the
blues ('Multiplication Blues'), revisit sunny '60s California
('Ocean Drive'), and take the piss out of techno riot-grrls
('Don't You Fuck') among many other things. It's not only their
sense of humor but also their complete mastery of this music that
has A&C songs turning up these days on commercials advertising
everything from cheap denim to luxury automobiles. It's also the
reason you may find yourself pushing "repeat" rather than "skip"
over more than a few of this album's shimmering singles. [TC]
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DA BEATMINERZ "Brace 4 Impak" (Rawkus) CD/LP $15.99/$12.99
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Like Nas, take a trip down (hip-hop's) memory lane back to the 93-
95 era where, before Biggie became larger than life and Jay-Z
crowned himself King of Brooklyn, Bucktown was repped by the
grimiest of crews in Smif N Wessun and Black Moon. The structure
of vital tracks like 'Who Got the Props', 'Sound Bwoy Bureill'
and 'Bucktown' popped with a verbal ferocity underscored by murky
jazz samples, booming rim shots and a ragga-tinged bass courtesy
of the production crew of brothers DJ Evil Dee and Mr. Walt, known
professionally as Da Beatminerz. As their name implied, they,
along with Diamond D and Lord Finesse's Diggin In The Crates
posse, searched high and low for the most obscure rare grooves,
and flipped and re-contextualized them into standards of
creativity for East Coast hip-hop. Fast-forward to 2001, and
they've stepped to the front with a supporting cast of guest MCs.
With an equal balance between thoughtful but lesser-known mic-
technicians like Talib Kweli, Krumbsnatcha, and What What, along
with uptempo party joints rocked by the Flipmode Squad and Naughty
by Nature, "Brace 4 Impak"'s guest appearances never sound forced;
rather, each track seems customized for its performer. Most
surprisingly, 'Open', which features the seductive vocals of Caron
Wheeler (yes, of Soul II Soul fame) provides a breather of late-
night quiet storm bump and grind in a sea of grit. Ultimately,
it's a record that handily documents the essentials of hip-hop--
beats and rhymes with soul and conviction. [KC]
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MAKOTO KAWABATA "You Are The Moonshine" (mar/ino) CD $13.99
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In which current Wire cover star Kawabata takes time away from
Acid Mother's Temple, Musica Transonic, Toho Sara, Father Moo,
Mainliner, etc. to release this solo work of shimmering guitar
ambience, industrial-strength textures, and harrowing excursions
to other worlds of sound. "An obsession with ancient East Asian
cosmology and universal vibrations has been added to Kawabata's
already hyper-active speed productivity. It would seem that his
years of musical osmosis, cross-genre cross-cultural wave fusion,
and gleeful experimentation have finally begun to pay off in
spades. The intense luminosity that he achieves with just one
guitar on this release takes his personal drone-world into
another, shining dimension. A dimension that seems to consist of
shivering, aching fields of light, whose multiphasic shifts are
seen as much as heard."-Alan Cummings, from his liner notes. Three
extensive soundscapes, 69 minutes, one-time edition of only 150
copies, and we've got the last 10 (for sale) known to exist in
this dimension. [JG]

SPACEK "Curvatia" (Island, UK) CD $24.99
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Following a massive single ('Eve'), and delivering bumped-up
remixes of Silent Poets and the Underwolves, Spacek drops their
full-length debut. Steve Spacek's "Curvatia" is easy to classify
as "Space-Age D'Angelo." But upon deeper immersion, this is about
as varied as R&B gets. Musically, this shadowy South London trio
builds love songs replete with stabs of silence. Taking something
from Jay Dee and Timbaland, Spacek's half-thump liquid beats roll
through each track as strange Matmosian samples and Herbert-like
strings turn over and over. Vocally, Spacek is closer to legendary
Too Pure trio Long Fin Killie, a breathy, genuine effort of aloof
but emotive force. Perhaps the most peculiar aspect of "Curvatia"
is the lyrical contribution of one Shanti White, who most recently
can be heard on the new (some say "unconventional") Res album.
Ms. White battles stereotypes and cliches by writing deep, half-
phrased poetics, sung eloquently by Mr. Spacek over grand, rolling
basslines. As in 'Getaway,' a metrical vision where imagery pops
like flash bulbs. "Crashing through walls and panes of glass / I
never climbed the stairs so fast / I gotta get away." In the urban
mode, their deserted landscape is reminiscent of another South
London bunch, the Tindersticks: grimy, tender, faded. "Curvatia"
is a vacuum-born genesis of seduction, densely composed of
numerous elements, yet occupying a space on its own--an alien love
song. As Ms. White puts it on 'Language,' "I want to speak another
language / But I don't know what to say." Rumor has it Spacek will
drop on Mos Def's Good Tree label sometime before the end of the
year. [DD]

AMM "Tunes Without Measure Or End" (Matchless, UK) CD $16.99
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The unique alchemy that is AMM in the live context translates
rather strangely to the recorded medium. I mean, what can possibly
top the sight of three mild-mannered-enough-looking should-be-
pensioners settling in behind seemingly innocent and familiar
instruments and then proceeding to dismantle our fundamental
conceptions as to which way is up? Is that percussive passage
emanating from Eddie Prevost's drums or Keith Rowe's guitar? That
melody originating from John Tilbury's piano--or is it from
Prevost's cymbals, ferchrissakes?! The three players listen to
each other as they have for nigh-on 36 years and improvise, nay,
instantaneously compose intricate mosaics never to be repeated.
The profound feelings of displacement and disbelief are somewhat
harder to come by when listening back to AMM records, but close
your eyes and they will follow shortly thereafter. [JG]

NIOBE "Radioersatz" (Tomlab, Germany) CD $14.99
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Yvonne Cornelius is Niobe. This, her first CD, takes as its most
profound influence the quirky soundtrack recordings of the '50s,
like "Vertigo" or "5,000 Fingers of Dr. T". "Radioersatz" is like
finding a soundtrack tape buried in a tin can for 50 years,
pulling it out and hearing that the layers of iron oxide have
fused erratically, made avant-garde by the accident of time.
Mostly instrumental, it has a feel not far from Penguin Cafe
orchestra or General Magic, similar to Curd Duca's "Easy
Listening" series (only less loop-oriented), more drawn out and
creatively structured. Cornelius herself sings, sometimes like a
torchy heroine, other times like Kendra Smith, or in abstract,
multi-tracked alien choruses. Idiosyncratic and tense, chirpy with
strings both sweet and pizzicato, static, bells, twitters....it's
25 minutes long, but slows time so carefully it seems like double
that. [RE]

COMUS "First Utterance" (Si-Wan, Korea) CD $19.99
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Comus apparently weren't having any of their era's feel-good
hippie shit when they stepped into Pye studios to record their
1970 psych-folk masterpiece "First Utterance". Perhaps this record
could only have been made in the aftermath of the Manson Family
murders the previous summer, or maybe Comus just reflected a
general vibe of disillusionment with the "Summer of Love". Anyhow,
they managed to expertly channel such 19th-century gothic
masterpieces as Lautreamont's "Chants du Maldoror" (Songs of
Dawns/Evil), or Joris-Karl Huysmans portraits of satanism and the
15th-century mass murderer Gilles de Rais in his novel "La-Bas".
And while in the early twentieth century the surrealist poets
Breton, Desnos, et al were exploring the occult and the macabre,
it wasn't until "First Utterance" that these themes were so
explored in music.  Comus are somewhat akin to the first few
Tyrannosaurus Rex albums--imagine Marc Bolan singing less about
unicorns and more about rape, pillage, and murder, and you have a
fair approximation of "First Utterance". Woodwinds, dark string
arrangments, and propulsive hand drumming abound. As a side note,
this album has long been an OM favorite, and in fact the first
track, 'Diana', is the only song I've ever heard played in the
store twice in a row due to popular demand. Highest
recommendation. [MK]

NOVISAD "Seleya" (Tomlab, Germany) CD/LP $14.99/$11.99
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Is 'true' ambient music supposed to have a calming, slightly
delirious effect? Most ambient musicians strive for that halcyon
goal, yet any music, really, is 'ambient' if it's playing in the
damn background. Novisad's gentle pulsings and buzzings are no
extreme departure from the genre as we know it, but as it drifts,
you realize it's in constant churn rather than repose. This is
Kristian Peters' second record, and first in 3 years (his first
was made when he was 18, to give you an idea of his age now). As
the record progresses, it moves out of icy electronic realms into
one where the sounds of acoustic instruments (harps, banjos,
guitars, piano, etc) are being diluted, dissolved, blurred, like
when you throw water on a page filled with writing in ink.
Incredibly mature for one so young, it actually starts out
unremarkable and by the end of the 38 minutes you're completely
impressed. [RE]
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ALFIE "If You Happy With You Need Do Nothing" (XL) CD $13.99
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Seems the most potent sales pitch that XL have for Alfie is that
they were signed by Badly Drawn Boy; they deserve better than
that, as this debut has it's own sweet and unique merits. Their
songs don't unfold quickly like a flat sponge dipped in water
springing instantly to life, instead, they build songs over time,
alternately revealing new facets in slithery-Beatles melodies,
strings and bells, their intricate, folky arrangements bolstered
by pretty droning harmonies. There's as much violin as guitar
here, in sounds that suck you up as they carry along, as if
creating their own gravity. This is Lovely British pop that's
miles and miles away from Britpop OR the Belle and Sebastian
style, homespun and patchwork (not lo-fi, however) more like late-
'60s psych popsters but without the utter silliness. Recommended.

DE FACTO "Megaton Shopping" (Gold Standard Laboratories) CD $12.99
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De Facto is Omar Lopez and Cedric Za Valas (from At the Drive In--
Lopez and Co. began their foray into dub soundscapes and funky
instrumentation before the band split up). Soulful keyboard,
groovy basslines and dubbed-out beats are splayed throughout,
inspired from the same '70s rare-groove samples the Beasties love
so much. In a subtle smoke-a-spliff-in-the-studio manner, "Megaton
Shopping" blends piano percussion, trumpet and Spanish vocals in
parts. But the only manipulations are the space dub forays on
songs like 'Fingertrap' -- De Facto proudly professes that no
samples were used on this recording. As a result, the straight-up
Latin meets Caribbean jams (as on 'Descarga De Facto') shine
through. Fans of June of '44's 'side project' HiM would appreciate
the parallels. [LG]

CUT CHEMIST/MADLIB "Bunky's Pick" (Stone's Throw) CD single $5.99
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A three-song single with a duration of 21 minutes--Cut Chemist
lays down nearly 8 minutes of choppy turntable funk (funky soul
like the "Brainfreeze" project), Madlib's contribution is 6
different remixes of soul vibraphonist Billy Wooten's 'In The
Rain', plus the original. Great and novel.

SENKING "Silencer" (Karaoke Kalk, Germany) CD $15.99
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Jens Massel's newest points in a simpler direction, and one that's
seemingly derived from the dub excursions of Pole and deep-sea
diving of Vladislav Delay rather than Massel's previously
acknowledged debt to mu-Ziq and Aphex Twin. A thrumming, slab-of-
wood bass is the constant throughout, but one element of dub's
palette, used in conjunction with watery static, real-life echo
sounds on everything (as if the whole record was made in a long,
empty hospital hallway). Almost mournful in its limits, the pace
here is gimpily slow, but the sounds are placed with a regal
precision that is quite utterly conscious. 33 minutes. [RE]

[V/A] "formotiondiscomfort,callflightattendantforbagdisposal" (Peter I'm Flying, France) CD $13.99
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An unusual electronic compilation from nascent label Peter I'm
Flying (this is their first release). The artists here (most of
whom also record for labels like Alice In Wonder and Gooom
Disques) combine skips and beeps into bumpy beats with rafts of
sighs and air organ melodies, harsh snare drums, scissor snips.
These tracks resemble those on Canada's Suction records labe l--
but with an important distinction: minus any retro pretensions.
Agitation, underwater drum'n'bass, reconstituted IDM, classically
diverse structures. The best overview of French underground IDM at
the moment! W/Anne Laplantine (also known as Michiko Kusaki),
O.Lamm, Mils, Shinsei, Mitchell Akiyama, more. [RE]

GARY USHER "Add Some Music To Your Day" (Poptones, UK) CD $16.99
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In 1970, Gary Usher (producer and writer of a huge chunk of
California's pop scene throughout the '60s, from the Beach Boys
and the Byrds to hot rod and surfing records) decided to try to
break into the (then quite lucrative) easy-listening/background
music market, and do his friend Brian Wilson a royalties-based
favor in the process. He inflated Wilson's songs into a towering
orchestral balloon, with such '60s touches as harpsichord, vague
samba and exotica effects.  Believe it or not, this is best
listened to super loud, where the hugeness has an epic charm, the
minor-key parts a skyscraper of sadness, orchestra like a huge
ocean liner sailing past your nose. [RE]

LESSER "Mensa Dance Squad" (Tigerbeat 6) CD $10.99
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Master of the imaginary audio blender set to 'spazz',
Lesser's "Mensa Dance Squad" is short attention span music taken
to a caffeinated extreme. Skipping and blurting like a mixture of
gabber and someone with a Kate Hepburn-ish syndrome: their hand on
the volume knob and a basket hodgepodge of samples (techno, hip-
hop, even David Bowie, etc.). Wraps up w/a great Kid 606 remix (9
minutes) that compounds all the factors I've just described. [RE]

KARSH KALE "Realize" (Six Degrees) CD $15.99
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Karsh Kale, a young New Yorker, has spent the last several years
performing and collaborating with many of the best in the Asian
Underground scene, usually on his signature electrified tabla
drums. His work w/Talvin Singh or Bill Laswell (on "Tabla Beat
Science") resonates strongly on this debut, which blends tabla,
flute, and layers of Indian vocals with sweeping synths and
sputtering drum'n'bass or trance grooves. This is a formula you
may be familiar with, but slick production and top-notch
musicianship elevates "Realize" beyond the ranks of simply old
news. [JM]

[V/A] "Brazilified" (Quango) CD $15.99
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Light and faintly edgy selections of Brazilian club music and
vintagy pop. With lots of hand-percussion, the hip names are here:
Jazzanova, Truby Trio, Da Lata, Easydelics. Very similar to
compilations on Irma, and would find a total home at the 18th
Street Lounge, though it's actually a little tiny bit rough (a
good thing!!) for the most preciously unsnaggable ears. Covers
1997-2001, with skipping rhythms, un-twitchy electronic drums and
keyboards. [RE]

THE WIRE "Issue 210" (The Wire, UK) Magazine $7.00
Acid Mother's Temple on the cover, Invisible Jukebox w/Laurie
Anderson (a little befuddled), Morton Feldman primer, Fennesz, the
Swedish Avant-garde, Drew Daniel of Matmos on Enoch Light, Delia
Derbyshire obituary, more.


PLUNDERPHONICS "69 Plunderphonics 96" (Seeland) 2xCD $27.99
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Elvis, Dolly Parton, and The Platters are sucked into a swirly
vortex of crescending collage, and the effects are hallucinatory.
The whole thing almost sounds like variations on 'A Day in the
Life.' Pop culture whores, myself included, live and breathe to
hear stuff like this. Get it now if you want it, as this set is
certain to disappear soon -- every sample is completely
unauthorized. A classic of audio terrorism, back in stock for a
short time. [DH]

BERTRAND BURGALAT "Quadrille" (Tricatel, France) CD $16.99
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Back in print after a two-year absence! Bertrand's 1997 soundtrack
to the Valerie Lemercier film "Quadrille" is lushly orchestrated and
ornately executed -- very "soundtrack-y" and very unlike his proper
debut LP "The Sssound of Mmmusic". Mostly instrumental, but there
are two tracks sung by Lemercier herself. Maybe not for the casual
BB fan, but essential for hardcore devotees (like us). [TC]

Just In:

[VA] "Club Tricatel" (Tricatel, France) CD $16.99
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A wild and surprising dance-party collection put together by
the fine folks at Tricatel. Billed as "16 punchy gems"  the disk
features tracks from old favorites (Fantastic Plastic Machine,
Arling & Cameron, Yoshinori Sunahara, Dauerfish, etc.) and some
VERY unexpected guests (The Knack, Rock Steady Crew, Can,
Kriss Kross)! Includes a great song from Corduroy (RA above).
Overall an odd mix, but it works quite well. [TC]

This week's contributors: Kris Chen [KC], Tom Capodanno [TC],
David Day [DD], Robin Edgerton [RE], Lisa Garrett [LG], Jeff
Gibson [JG], Duane Harriott [DH], Tim Haslett [TH], Michael
Klausman [MK], Josh Madell [JM].

The Big Picture:

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