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Issue #19 June 2000

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Little Red Rocket
The Clientele
John P. Strohm / Sonny Sixkiller
Ladytron
Davenport
Go-Rin-No-Sho
Jaco's Invention


Little Red Rocket
It's In The Sound

Monolyth Records
12 song CD

Usually not one to judge a CD by its cover, I was intrigued by the clever artwork gracing the debut disc by Little Red Rocket. So much so, I would be highly disappointed if the music didn't live up to the impressive packaging. They didn't let me down.

This four-piece band hailing from Athens, GA has a cool serrated pop sound in the vein of Elastica. This is more than likely a result of the smooth sounds of the dual female vocal team of Maria and Orenda Rocket. Their voices blend together perfectly, providing unforgettable pop harmonies in the foreground, bouncing among musical styles that vary from the semi-ska trumpet calls in I Believe In What You Do to the garage punk guitar riffs of California. The band drifts just as easily into the ethereal sounds of Love and the Doors-like Italian Song. But the real clincher here is the brilliant Lies, a song that balances an anxious trip-hop groove with a sticky sweet pop chorus.

If anything, Little Red Rocket is giving indie pop music a much needed shot in the arm. This record is sure to make some waves and maybe put their little town on the map again.

MISH MASH Mandate: A connection is made.

Little Red Rocket Website


The Clientele
i want you (more than ever) / 6 a.m. morningside

Elefant Records
7" yellow vinyl single

Listening to this record is like finding a lost gem from the days of the British Invasion. The Clientele takes us on a surreal journey to the late 60s with a wispy psychedelic timbre that flows along effortlessly.

i want you (more than ever) is a perfectly soothing pop song that features a gentle rhythm under softly sung vocals and jangly guitar lines. The b-side is the short but memorable 6 a.m. morningside, a song that elicits the more melancholy moods of Simon & Garfunkel, yet stamped firmly with a British accent.

An undeniable classic and a must-have for vinyl junkies.

MISH MASH Mandate: Lost and found

The Clientele Website
Elefant Website


John P. Strohm / Sonny Sixkiller
Invisible World / Pass The Baton

Vital Cog Records
Split 7" vinyl single

For the second platter in their Super Heroes of Rock, Vital Cog serves up the dynamic duo of John P. Strohm and Sonny Sixkiller. A terrific team-up and more fabulous comic book artwork make this one another great find.

Mr. Strohm is a straightforward rocker. His Invisible World shows off jangly & fuzzy guitar chords topped off with a Tom Petty (or maybe Matthew Sweet) styled vocal delivery. The guitar solo blares with Neil Young-like feedback and sounds ready to explode. Very nice. Sonny Sixkiller continues to put their knack for anxious indie pop on display with Pass The Baton, a song kicks in with plenty of guitar and attitude from Kara Lafty. And just for fun, when you think it's over, it's not...

MISH MASH Mandate: We can be heroes

Vital Cog Website


Ladytron
Commodore Rock

Tricatel Records
4 song EP, 25cm vinyl
Tricatel 25cm Club

There are only four songs on this record, but it's overflowing with ultracool Euro dance rhythms which are sure to get you moving. Lighthearted and fun, Ladytron keeps our attention solely focused on the all-important beat.

The quick and lively Playgirl uses sweeping keyboard sounds that float over staccato hand claps, while Commodore Rock has more of a harsh, drum-n-bass feel to it. He Took Her To A Movie is a brilliantly nonchalant pop song that relies on the repetitive title phrase for its irresistible hook. The fast and furious space-age lounge music of Olivetti Jerk reminds me of Esquivel set on a too high speed.

This one is worth the kitsch factor alone, not to mention the fun you'll have spinning it into blissful abandon.

MISH MASH Mandate: Kitschy Club

Tricatel Website


Davenport
Davenport

Phloamdilly Records
7 song CD

Centering around the duo of keyboardist/vocalist Gregg Ward and bassist/vocalist Jason Peterson, Davenport embodies a classic pop rock sound along the lines of Jellyfish and Ben Folds Five. The songs are catchy and creative, keeping the sound fresh on each and every tune.

This Married Life begins the record with an upbeat piano-centered song that could very well be Ben Folds if he picked up a guitarist along the way. The Beatlesque verses of Say The Words employs a cool organ sound blended with moving vocal harmonies that merges into an overstated 70s-styled chorus. Proving they have more than one trick up their sleeve, Davenport shifts gears into the quiet and anxious I Can't Die and move on into the acoustic groove of Sticks and Stones. They turn up the guitar rock with I Don't Remember and then close out with the psychedelic This Time.

With all the different styles in the mix, you'd think there would be a lack of focus, but they do a great job of holding it all together. The result is a tight collection of pop songs that shows off a great amount of talent.

MISH MASH Mandate: Tight tunes

Davenport Website


Go-Rin-No-Sho
Inner Light

Troupe Records
10 song CD

Bringing heavenly thoughts down to earth is no easy task, but Christian rapper Go-Rin-No-Sho skillfully blends his positive messages with in-your-face rap lyrics in this powerful performance. His voice is strong and direct, similar to Guru and Chuck D, with a style that doesn't pull punches.

Go-Rin-No-Sho doesn't shy away from profanity or violence--but he only uses it when necessary for emphasis, as in the hard-hittingOne + One: "See the strong survive, so what a brother got to die, no one else gives a sh*t, so why should I?" This street-level mentality brings this record to life, presenting it with harsh reality without watering down the uplifting message.

Brutally honest and uncompromising, this is an album that should make any rap fan sit up and take notice.

MISH MASH Mandate: Down with the King

Troupe Records Website


Jaco's Invention
Jaco's Invention

Jaco Music Production
5 song CD

Michele and Danny Jaco, the duo that is Jaco's Invention, bring their bluesy rock tunes to life on this five song EP. Danny provides the solid guitar foundation, while Michele's vocals float and flutter with plenty of misty-eyed soul.

They go for a straightforward rock sound with Eagles Fly Alone, a song that celebrates individualism with its spirited lyrics: "It's a little bit harder to trust the wind / to lift your wings up to heights they've never been." The funky feel of Cinderella's Wish proves they have a few tricks up their sleeve, showing off an edgy underside that is pure classic rock.

This is as solid as an EP can be, resembling a full release, but without putting all the cards on the table. Definitely worth a closer look.

MISH MASH Mandate: Solid rock

Jaco's Invention Website


Other Indie Review Sites

Music Dish

Brian Connelly's Lunatic Fringe at Muzikman.com

Shake It Up Power Pop



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