Mar 052003
 
Authors: Casey Cisneros

Shanti Groove

It is almost time to start preparing for the Lyons

Blue Grass Festival and to get in the

mood start with Shanti Groove.

Shanti Groove’s album stays true to its folk roots.

All of the songs start with the fast

twanging on the banjo and rush out of the speaker like

a freight train.

Most of the album is instrumental, such as “Boy

Howdy”, “Light Up Lonesome” and “Free Bumper Hop.”

“Free Bumper Hop” throws some variation into the mix,

making the banjo and guitar come off sounding psychedelic,

showing some rock influence.

The song “Green Moss” has down-home singing and

harmonies capped off with the

infamous guitar vs. banjo showdown at the end.

Over all Shanti Groove plays with a lot of energy and

would be enjoyed by any Blue Grass fan.

The Music that is on the new album by Three Degrees

of Freedom jumps into a genre of music which is getting really

full of bands – acoustic rock.

Ever since Dave Matthews hit the music scene with

his acoustic guitar by his side, more and more bands have went

the acoustic route, but then their music runs into brick walls.

Three Degrees of Freedom runs face first into

sounding the same on every song on the album. The formula for each

song goes like this: a catchy acoustic guitar intro, Paul Cox’s almost

emo sounding singing and the same sounding rhythm

as the last song they played, but with a different guitar solo.

The lyrics have an easy conflict feeling to the words.

Three Degrees of Freedom plays with some talent

on their album but it seems like after you hear just one song

you have heard all of them.

Xeren

Shirley Manson, eat your heart out: Xeren is better than

Garbage, and that is still pretty bad.

Xeren takes electronic music and hard rock, puts it

together and makes a pretty bad MTV clich/. The Song “You Need Me”

is like a testosterone version of a Garbage song. It is driven by

heavy rock and a repetitive, but catchy hook to the

song. The lyrics give off a very competitive

personification to them. Some thing someone would listen to

to get ready for a heated foos ball game.

The song, “Everything” is sang like the whinny Bono,

from U2 with a 1980’s sound to the music. Why couldn’t the eighties

music end with the eighties?

“Blackbox” has simple lyrics and a repetitive beat like the KTCL

whore Daft Punk. And to round the package out is the slow acoustic piece,

“Why Do” which strays away from the electronic music. If you have a taste

for Garbage, Bono or Daft Punk give Xeren a listen, or don’t. It’s really up to you.

Starless

After the first listen of To Sleep: Perchance to

Dream by Starless, the lyrics leave the listener asking, what

kind of drugs was the band on when they wrote the words?

The lyrics seem to have been pulled out of a hat at random and

Thrown together to make a song. But after listening to the album

a few more times, the poetic nature of the lyrics starts to make sense.

To Sleep: Perchance to Dream is filled with songs full of conflict,

emotional ups and downs and religious connotations open for a lot of

different interpretations. The almost emo lyrics are accompanied with

a raging distorted guitar, heart-thumping bass, heavy drums and out of

place soft guitar melodies. Starless has a hard rock feeling with a little

industrial twist to it. Starless doesn’t come off as catchy music but it is

definitely good art. This is an album for any indie rock fan.

Get out of the cold weather and warm up with the new

album by Soul Thieves, Microphone in the Sugar Bowl.

This album is full of fun summer time rock songs that will fool your

senses into thinking its eighty degrees outside. Their style of music is

comparable to Blues Traveler, Hootie and the Blowfish or Counting

Crows. After listening to this album just once all the way through it has you

singing along. Michael St. James sings with so much power in his voice, while

he spouts out love songs. The drums are hard hitting through almost the

whole album and the acoustic guitar parts set the mood for each song

perfectly. The only problem with Micro Phone in the Sugar Bowl lies in the

monotonous lyrical content. All that the songs talk about is love. They even go so

far as to use the line, “When will I stop writing love songs about you” as

the chorus in “Starting Tonight.” But this Album is still rockin’ even if the lyrics

do some serious symping.

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