Filler Quick Scans

Eugene Chadbourne /
Jimmy Carl Black

Pachuco Cadaver
Fire Ant

AS TRIBUTE ALBUMS mostly suck, perhaps it's appropriate that the music world's most unlikely and reluctant icon should be given the "treatment" by one of our most inscrutable and willing iconoclasts. Joined by ex-Mothers Of Invention drummer Black, Chadbourne gets into a free-spirited and free-form state of mind we acolytes call "Beefheartian."

The duo nails it from the git-go with a sneaky update of "Buggy Boogie Woogie," Chadbourne picking through a mutant jazzrock extrapolation and Black thrumming happily along. A country-blues "Willie The Pimp" and a bottle-neckin' "Sure 'Nuff 'N' Yes, I Do" follow. Then it's time for the Trout Mask Replica portion of the program, and since the original album resembled chaos to many upon its release, so too might this endurance test. Hey mamas and dadas: Nobody said it was gonna be easy! (Write: Fire Ant, 2009 Ashland Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28205)

--Fred Mills

P-Funk All-Stars

Dope Dogs
One Nation Records

HEEL TO THE MASTER, Snoop Dogg and company--George Clinton and P-Funk are back. Getting up there in years, Clinton hasn't lost a step in his music or his wit. Dope Dogs, the most recent release by Clinton et al, has everything you'd expect from the Detroit funk ensemble: lysergic-bent Hendrix guitar work, Battlestar Galactica vocals and underground comic album art. P-Funk tips the hat to those who've aped their groove, and then shows how it's really done. If you hear Public Enemy, Dr. Dre, and the Beastie Boys in the mix, its no mistake--Clinton was literally making people move while they were still in diapers. Add Clinton's CIA/War on Drugs conspiracy lyrics and disses of everyone from George Bush and Oliver North to radio blowhards Rush Limbaugh and Ken Hamblin, and you've got a seven minute party.

--Sean Murphy

Skinny Puppy

The Process

USELESS, BUT MARKETABLE. First off, this whole industrial/goth/dance schtick became passé the minute Nine Inch Nails hit the Woodstock stage. And alterna-nihilism the choice of musical America? As if! "I'm sticking pins and needles in the stinking rotten flesh..." sings Skinny Puppy without a trace of irony in "Candle." To paraphrase the Butthole Surfers, going down to Florida, gonna let a death metal band stuff a red hot tire iron up my ass. In the meantime, watered down stuff like SP and Ministry sells because it's all image and no guts.

Still, kids will be kids, so they need role models. The band goes out on a high note leaving behind a dead junkie. As any spark of creativity is missing on this final record, the overdose makes for a great PR hook, one which American has not been slow to exploit. Was that Skinny Puppy--or "Sheep" or "Lemming"?

--Fred Mills

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