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  • Article

    Rotation

    Semisonic Feeling Strangely Fine MCA In the increasingly disposable world of '90s pop, Dan Wilson is a hooksmith without peer, and one of the most shamelessly sentimental songwriters of his generation. But then, what exactly is Wilson's gen...

    by Zac Crain on April 2, 1998
  • Article

    Static

    Ego run amuck?... It had to be the easiest $1,000 Houston's Ezra Charles ever made. Hired by oldies station KLDE/94.5 FM to open for creaky classic-rockers Three Dog Night at the Children's Festival in Hermann Park March 21, the insufferable leader o...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 2, 1998
  • Article

    Clubland

    Richmond Strip entertainment mogul and City Streets owner Jeff Meineke has been keeping plenty busy. He recently presided over the massive image overhaul of Blue Planet, turning it into Powerplant, a high-end Outer Loop partier's Taj Mahal -- and one...

    by Hobart Rowland on April 2, 1998
  • Article

    Hard to Kill

    A recent MTV Online editorial opined that heavy metal is "the dog bone buried in the background of pop culture these days." If that's the case, then Megadeth's singer, guitarist and residing conscience, Dave Mustaine, is undoubtedly one of the fierce...

    by Paul J. MacArthur on April 2, 1998
  • Article

    Tangled Web - From Mexico to L.A. via Alaska and El Paso, Tito Larriva has seen it all -- and more

    The phone call finally arrives around 6 p.m., four hours late. The connection crackles and hisses as if it resents the human intrusion; Tito Larriva's voice on the other end sounds hollow, distant. The imagination reels. This is, after all, the prima...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 26, 1998
  • Article

    Real-Life Product

    This is the story of O -- Lil' O, to be exact. On a Friday morning, Lil' O, the street and studio persona of 20-year-old Houstonian Ore Magnus-Lawson, tears into the parking lot of a West Houston pool hall in a black Honda Accord. Sauntering into the...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on March 26, 1998
  • Article

    Static

    SXSW '98: Taking it as it comes... Griping has always been part of the South by Southwest Music Conference, where for five dizzying days in Austin, the pissing and moaning is as copious as the tepid beer and leathery barbecue. Going into this year's ...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 26, 1998
  • Article

    Rotation

    Cheri Knight The Northeast Kingdom E-Squared As a member of the great Boston band Blood Oranges, Cheri Knight was alternative country before alternative country was cool. But among those in the know, Knight's singing and songs had long been...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on March 26, 1998
  • Article

    Radio Shy

    Kicking off their spring tour here in Houston, Radiohead have broken the record for the fastest sellout in Aerial Theater's brief history, packing the place faster than even the reunited Jane's Addiction could. This from a band with only one hit sing...

    by Craig D. Lindsey on March 26, 1998
  • Article

    Conference Kudos and Crud

    Best Hollywood Cameo: Director/sometime guitarist Robert Rodriguez jamming like a man possessed with Tito and Tarantula at Waterloo Brewing Co. Best Reason to Annex Canada: Vancouver-based PURE's potent showcase at Liberty Lunch. Best Proof That ...

    by David Simutis on March 26, 1998
  • Article

    Funk Revival

    It's easy to forget now just how huge Grand Funk Railroad was during its '70s heyday. Critics may have dismissed the band's brand of meat-and-potatoes hard rock, seeing it as nothing more than soundtrack fodder for suburban-basement bong blowouts. Bu...

    by Bob Ruggiero on March 19, 1998
  • Article

    Sparking Interest - David Rice finally throws the switch on greenelectric

    When David Rice finally got down to work recording greenelectric, his debut CD for Columbia Records, he couldn't have been farther from his element. Stowed away in the converted remains of an old grain mill in the rolling countryside outside of Bath,...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 19, 1998
  • Article

    Static

    Hole lotta litigation... It's become mighty tempting to assume that Houston's Manhole doesn't exist anyplace but in court documents. After all, the female-led metal/sludge outfit has seen more action in front of a judge than before paying audiences o...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 19, 1998
  • Article

    Rotation

    Van Halen Van Halen III Warner Bros. The loss of a charismatic frontman usually spells trouble for any band, but resilient pop-metal veterans Van Halen seem to have turned that maxim on its ear. Having weathered both the showy, cock-rock po...

    by David Simutis on March 19, 1998
  • Article

    Tough Customer

    Her phrasing is reminiscent of Billie Holiday; her deep range brings to mind Sarah Vaughn. She's won several awards and made classic contributions to the history of jazz, including a universally acclaimed duet release with Ray Charles. But perhaps wh...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 19, 1998
  • Article

    Static

    More than a one-trick pony... Any band that aims for greatness needs a steadying element -- an authority figure, if you will. For Houston's Horseshoe, that used to be drummer Eddie Hawkins, who, during his four year-stint with the somewhat hapless ac...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 12, 1998
  • Article

    Rotation

    Robbie Robertson Contact from the Underworld of Redboy Capitol There must be a few folks out there still pining for the simpler days when Robbie Robertson wasn't such an insufferably pretentious do-gooder. For those disenfranchised follower...

    by Sande Chen on March 12, 1998
  • Article

    Starved for Respect - The Hunger aren't after your sympathy, but they could use a pat on the back

    The drive from downtown Houston to the Hunger's office-park rehearsal facility is only about 15 minutes. But as far as the Inner Loop's hipster set is concerned, the place might as well be on the other side of the earth. And in a way, it is. Hun...

    by Hobart Rowland on March 12, 1998
  • Article

    Child of Fate

    The performance is almost flawless -- a real stadium crowd pleaser. But in a small venue like Cody's, signs of tension are evident at first, despite the show's tight choreography, pulsing R&B grooves and seamless harmonies. It seems the time is now f...

    by Marlo Cobb on March 12, 1998
  • Article

    No Monkey Business

    The Space Monkeys hail from Manchester, a working-class enclave far from the of-the-moment trendiness of London. That bleak spot is also the hometown of the long-defunct Joy Division, and of the more recent English phenomena Stone Roses and Oasis. ...

    by David Simutis on March 12, 1998
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