Queer Music Reviews from QZE #18

These are CD and tape reviews that appeared in Queer Zine Explosion #18, published in June 2000. All reviews by Larry-bob.

Remember, buy your books and CDs from local independent stores, not evil corporate chains or on-line mega-stores (the discount is equal to the postage at Amazon.com--so go to your local bookstore--you might actually meet someone.) Local stores can do special orders and get your books for you in days. Also request your local public library purchase books and CDs you like.

For ease of use, I have put all the new reviews in this file. For older reviews, see Queer Music Explosion, Music reviews from QZE 16, Music reviews from QZE 17.

Black Kali Ma: You Ride the Pony (I¹ll be the Bunny) CD. This is the new band of Gary Floyd, formerly of the Dicks and Sister Double Happiness. I haven't heard Gary's last few solo albums, which by and large weren't released in the U.S., but it's good to hear his music again, and it's very ferocious and hard-rocking. (Alternative Tentacles)

Steven Gellman: Photobook CD. This CD takes the form of an album of photographs, each song like a picture. The music is acoustic, in a folk vein, with electric instruments on some songs. The song "Different" is about being queer, though that's more apparent from the context of the lyric booklet, with its quote about coming out from Armisted Maupin. For more information and sound samples, visit hiddenpoet.com. Hidden Poet Music, PO Box 501, Germantown, MD 20875.

Gypsy and Reno CD. A CD of torch song standards by Gypsy and Reno. You can check out their sound from the MP3s linked to from their website. Really, everyone who's doing cabaret performance needs to get to New York and see Kiki and Herb's post-modern cabaret act. http://www.mammothartists.com/gypsy&reno

Homocore Mpls: Live and Loud compilation CD. A first so far as I can figure - a compilation of queer bands playing live. Bands include The Need, Lucifag, Mas Scara, Tribe 8, The Butchies, Fashion Sense, Harum-Scarum, Stephanie McCarter, Sherman Electric, Slalom, and Fagatron. For more info, see the Homocore Minneapolis webpage at www.homocore.org. Lefty Records, PO Box 300002, Minneapolis, MN 55403.

Invaders From a Forbidden Planet: Queen City CD. Includes interviews with gay and lesbian teenagers, and then the content of the interviews is used as the inspiration for the songs. The music is guitar-based pop; the bass-playing is active and melodic and reminds me of Mike Watt at times. The band has a website and there's also info about this CD on the site of the youth group whose interviews appear on the CD.

Juliet: Rogue Amazon CD-EP.The title track is co-written by Juliet, Pamela Jones, and Magic, and is anevocation of women's power with soulful vocals over percolating rhythm. The other song is a cover of Grace Jones' "I Need A Man" - Grace is incidentally executive producer Pamela Jones' sister. There are two mixes of "Rogue Amazon" and three of "I Need A Man." Rogue Amazon Productions, PO Box 6187, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 80934.

Jon Gilbert Leavitt: "Pride" CD single. Jon Gilbert Leavitt's song "Pride" is sort of like Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start the Fire," only about gay subject matter, with a long string of historical items over a synth background. Jon Gilbert Leavitt, 117-01 Park Lane South, #D4G, Kew Gardens, NY 11418-1014. email: jgleavitt@aol.com

I got a lyric sheet for Limpwrist which is a new queer hardcore band whose singer is Martin of Los Crudos. I met Andrew from Philly who's also in the band, and the various members live in different cities. But hopefully they will record soon.

Rita Lynch: Far Away CD-EP. The title track is a slow, gentle number of vocals, guitar, with a rhythm section in the background, and the second track, Fallen, is in the same vein. The third track, "I am Obsessed," with its faster tempo, guitar bends, and desperate confidentiality brings to mind P.J. Harvey. Feels like the end of the world slowly builds, a dramatic end to the disc. Well-produced, and I like getting music in a small, well-chosen dose like this rather than the over-lengthy albums that seem too common these days. Email address is barbaradarby@compuserve.com

The Need: The Need is Dead CD. This second full-length record finds The Need more in the precisely timed guitar-drum metal that has been their live sound in recent times. The organ tinges are still here, though, especially on what would be the first side of the record in vinyl terms. The second side features the three-part ³Dark Sally² suite that features monster metal guitar riffs. A musically tight, inventive, and innovative unit, The Need¹s forceful power is not to be missed. See their rock opera (in collaboration with other forces including the folks who brought you Drag Attack and Nomy Lamm) The Transfused this summer in Olympia. www.transfused.com www.olywa.net/need (Chainsaw - www.chainsawrecords.com)

Paxton: Ginger¹s Dish CD-EP. The first two songs throw some drum loops into the mix of their power-pop sound. Sample lyric from the first track, "What's it like to be you?" -- "all the homos want to be beside you on the dancefloor" -- the song is about one of the beautiful club people who always jumps to the head of the line. "How the Love Turns Around" is a drinkin' ballad with a gorgeous multi-tracked vocal intro. "Closing," a solo acoustic guitar number, is about going through the belongings of a friend who has died, inspired by the passing of Paxton's bass player. Paxton's got a great rust-edged voice, and with his band creates great pop rock. Check the review of their full-length in QZE. Visit Paxton's website for more info. www.paxtonband.com

Prettypony: micro€pailettes CD. Noisy pop that bounces along uptempo. Lyrics are as queer-oriented as I could wish for, with tunes about teens into cybersex, cumstained sheets, and culture-appropriating academics. The unusual drum production helps set the record apart from the pack. email: homo_pony@hotmail.com Web: http://www.prettypony2K.com/

She-Devils: La Piel Dura CD. She-Devils are a band from Argentina. They're a hard-rocking trio - Patricia sings and plays bass, Pilar (who's holding a pink triangle button in her picture) plays guitar, and Lucio drums. Lyrics are in Spanish. Definitely recommended. email the band at sdvs@mundo.wamani.apc.org $13 para latinoam*rica (incluye env¹o), $15 world wide (post paid) to C.C. 16 Suc 27 B (1427) Cap. Fed. Argentina

Bedroom Productions LP. DJ Snax, who is the artist formerly known as Paul Bonomo of the band Fagbash, was kind enough to send me a vinyl LP of his music under the name of Bedroom Productions. http://www.elturcoloco.com/bedprod.html

Robert Urban: Elegies CD. At times moving into prog territory, it's a smoothly produced melodic rock album with openly queer lyrics. For more information, visit the artist's website. http://www.roberturban.com

Woof: Just a Bear tape. Two-song tape by this duo of bears. The title song is a bluegrass-tinged number about what else, being a bear. In case anyone reading this is clueless as to what a bear is, that means a big, hairy guy who likes other guys. The other song, ³Northbound Train² is a song about getting left for another guy. Paul Golio, 37 Rochambeau Ave, Dobbs Ferry, NY 10522.

Also received:

Kathy Acker: Redoing Childhood CD. (Kill Rock Stars)

The Haggard: A Bike Called Greasy CD. (Mr Lady)

The Little Deaths: Destinasyion: Sexy CD. (Heartcore)

Scott Free: The Living Dead CD. ( Leather/Western)

Fighter D.: This Is About You CD. (Heartcore)

The Pill: 7². (Heartcore)

Sarah Dougher/Kaia split 7² (Heartcore/Mr. Lady)

Sarah Dougher: The Walls Ablaze CD (Mr. Lady)

Brown Star: Due Damage CD (timmi-kat - www.mp3.com/brownstar)

Tami Hart: No Light in August CD. (Mr. Lady)

Arthur Loves Plastic: Second Avenue Detour CD. (www.mp3.com/alp)

Paul Manchin: Trinity CD. (paulm@hwcn.org)

The Moves CD. (Mr. Lady)

Randy Walker: Daylight never exposed so total a ruin CD (poorbastardsongs@yahoo.com)

Jallen Rix: Time on a Chain CD. (www.eighthnoterecords.com)

Garrin Benfield: Living a dream CD. (eighthnote)

Michael Rodriguez: Piano Impressions CD. (eighthnote)

Sir: Rock On! Love Agnes CD. (www.sirtheband.com)