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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 7, 2000)
Rouse’s Midwestern roots
shine through on ‘Home’
■ Album’s relaxed feel
fits in with artists such as
Neil Young and Wilco.
By Josh Krauter
Josh Rouse’s new album,
“Home,” should sound familiar to
anyone who has spent long hours
driving on Interstate 80.
“Home” is the sound of the
Midwest. It’s full of relaxed, melod
ic songs that take their time, but
don’t hang around too long. It’s the
sound of highways, cornfields, half
empty bars and the clash between
rural and urban life.
It s also an album that tits com
fortably between Americana rock
schools old (Neil Young, Tom Petty)
and new (Wilco, Son Volt).
Rouse, a Nebraska native
(though all Web sites and press
releases mysteriously never mention
a hometown, just thp state) who
moved around a lot as a child, knows
what the Midwest sounds and feels
Oddly enough, Rouse cites ’80s
Brit-rock such as the Cure and the
Smiths as primary influences,
though “Home” doesn’t give this
The music is simple, with lyrics
tap dancing between cliche and sen
timent, and arrangements spare,
with just a few guitars and drums
peppered with the occasional violin
Most of the songs are about
recent memories and introspective
moments, the words neither pro
found nor embarrassing.
On “Directions,” Rouse tells a
friend (or maybe himself) that his
life has gone somewhere it wasn’t
supposed to go.
“Don’t like the direction you
have come to/Seems to lack the
attention it used to/Stay out all night
and get high with your
friends/Wonder why you don’t get
anything done,” Rouse sings, but
this is not a sappy, anti-drug song.
in the next verse, Rouse still is
unsatisfied when the song’s subject
gets his life together.
“Don’t like the direction you
have come to/Now it has the atten
tion it used to.” Nothing too pro
found, but it’s a nice little ode to pes
simism and the mundane that just
seems to fit Midwesterners best.
In “Hey Porcupine,” a nice com
panion piece to “Directions,” Rouse
sings to someone who is probably an
\ TITLE: Home
LABEL: Rykodisc Records -
FIVE WORDS: Pleasant,
solid, yet slight album.
“I heard you’ve cleaned up and
you’re going back to school/What a
The rest of the songs are mostly
about relationship problems, nostal
gia and driving back home, but, at
less than 40 minutes, Rouse knows
when to exit.
It’s a good thing, too, because
“Home” would have been a tough
listen if it had been longer. Rouse is
a competent songwriter, but only
about half the songs are memorable.
The rest are as bland as mile markers
Backstroke,” and “Hey Porcupine”
are the only really good songs, with
“Directions” and “Afraid to Fail”
And for every good line, such as
“Watch the way you backstroke
across the room,” there is another,
such as “As you waltzed in, the room
became a glow” that would probably
only work on “Dawson’s Creek” or
some other show I’ve never seen.
But Rouse shows promise, and if
he builds on the strong parts of
“Home,” he’s going to come up with
an album that will make it all the
way down the highways, dirt roads
and Interstates without a nudge to
the fast forward button.
‘Exterminator’ a mix
of techno and rock
By Cliff Hicks
As techno goes mainstream, a lot
of rock bands have tried to blend tech
no tactics into their folds, but very few
Primal Scream’s last album, 1997’s
“Vanishing Point,” touched on a few
techno elements, but never really cap
tured a full-force techno rush. Still, the
band was starting to experiment in that
The Primals have never been able
to be pegged into a musical field -
they’re chameleons in a music world
full of stagnation. Their first album,
“Screamadelica,” took ’60s groove
laced wanderings and blended in slow
er acid-house beats.
They followed this with “Give Out
But Don’t Give Up,” a record that was
as squared-jawed a rip-off of ’70s
Rolling Stones as possible.
“Vanishing Point” captured the
dark ’80s aimlessness and hopeless
ness, which left everyone wondering -
In 1998, guitar-god Kevin Shields,
the man who is, was and will always be
My Bloody Valentine, remixed “If
They Move, Kill ’em,” one of the tracks
from “Vanishing Point,” for the single’s
In 1999, Bobby Gillispie, the
Primals’ mastermind, was a guest to
Bernard Butler on the latest Chemical
These two events changed the band
more than anyone could have guessed.
On “Exterminator,” we find the
Primals cranking up the volume so far
that the tones start to blur, like staring
into the sun too long. This is the sound
of a band cranking it up far beyond 11.
From the opening crash of “Kill All
Hippies” to the closing buzzes of
sr Primal Scream
LABEL: Creation Records
1 FIVE WORDS: Rock meets
techno on overload.
“Shoot Speed/Kill Light,” the Primals
are reinventing themselves into a new
sound, a new face for music.
Both Shields and the Chemicals
make appearances on “Exterminator,”
and their influence throughout the
whole album is unforgettable.
Much like My Bloody Valentine’s s
defining work, “Loveless,” there is
always something going on.
Sometimes the guitars roar and over
load any stereo, other times they bend,
whine, swirl and distort.
Shields himself mixed a track on
the album, “Accelerator,” and it’s easy
to recognize his sonic thumbprint from
the start. It’s the track that keeps all
equalizer bands in the red no matter
how quietly it’s played.
It s hard to categorize
“Exterminator” as an album - it’s such
a masterful blend of rock, noise, tech
no, orchestral meandering, rushing
breakbeats and deadpan vocals that it
Take, for example, “Blood
Money,” which keeps a steady drum
beat the whole time but adds ’60s spy
jazz over it, then compounds it with a
overwhelming bass line, then drops in
what sounds like a harpsichord. And
this track stays instrumental the whole
time. Contrast it against “Accelerator”
and you’ll think you aren’t listening to
the same album.
“Exterminator” (or, as it’s written
on the album’s cover, “Xtrmntr”) isn’t
without faults. It’s nice to see Shields’
remix of “If They Move, Kill ’em” on
an album, but it’s also stuff Primal fans
have heard before. And while the two
versions of “Swastika Eyes” are fairly
different, one of which was mixed by
the Chemical Brothers, did we really
need both on the album?
The biggest hindrance is that the
Primals don’t have a U.S. distributor
right now, so the album’s only available
on import. Still, even the big chains are
carrying the import version, which
should tell you just how good this
Experience the noise, the beauty,
the fusion. Get “Exterminator.”
Fat Tuesday Celebration!
Straight from Fort
New Orleans Buffet
Comer of 11th & K
$1 Mug Night
$1 Mini Pizza
from 8pm to midnight
2 for I Calzones
All day Sunday
Come hear the ASUN Candidates @
Daily Nebraskan/RHA-sponsored debate
at Nebraska Union today at 7pm
4 Crispy Corn Tacos
Stop in Wednesday For
“TACOS & TACHAS”
803 ‘Q’ ST.
Authentic Chicago Style Deli
Free Drink with Sandwich Order
Live Music 6:30 - 8:30 Tues-Sat
No cover, AH Ages
4201 “O” St. 438-6388
Nail Sets $30
use no MMA
Celebrate Fat Tuesday with Us!
' . March 7, 4pm
Hanks forced to drop
pounds for Island film
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - A slim
mer Tom Hanks is due in Memphis
next month to film parts of a movie in
which he plays an island castaway, a
Hanks plays a workaholic Federal
Express executive who survives a
plane crash and is stranded alone on a
small island in the film “Cast Away,” a
20th Century Fox and DreamWorks
studios production with Robert
While on the remote island, Hanks
has to completely transform himself
both physically and emotionally in
order to survive his circumstance.
Madonna gets serious
about love, motherhood
NEW YORK (AP) - Madonna
enjoys being in love again but isn’t sure
she’s ready for marriage.
In the March 13 issue of People
magazine, she calls her romance with
film director Guy Ritchie a “serious
But on the subject of marriage, she
said: “I don’t know about that. We’ll
cross that bridge when we get to it, if
we get to it.”
Madonna, who divorced actor
Sean Penn in 1989. also acknowledges
she still has feelings for former
boyfriend Carlos Leon, the father of
her 3-year-old daughter Lourdes.
German show allows for
little privacy for subjects
BERLIN (AP) - Residents on a
24-hour German TV show will now be
able to duck from the omnipresent
cameras’ range, the producers of the
“Big Brother” series agreed Monday.
In turn, media regulators meeting
in Munich postponed a decision until
March 14 on whether to order the
show off the air.
Under fire for violating residents’
dignity, the show’s producers said they
would set up a camera-free room in
the house where residents could spend
an hour a day in privacy.
The show is based on a series of
the same name in the Netherlands,
where cameras and microphones
monitor five men and five women for
100 days, 24 hours a day - even in the
Infrared cameras observe resi
dents when the lights are off in the two
communal bedrooms, and there also is
a camera in the toilet - though produc
ers say it’s there only for security.
The audience periodically gets the
chance to vote to kick someone out of
the house, and the person left at t> c
end wins $125,000.
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