Alibi V.17 No.13 • March 27-April 2, 2008 
Saul Williams dishing out a knuckle sandwich

Music Interview

Saul Williams

You should be screaming Niggy Tardust at the top of your lungs

It's tough to get a read on rapper, actor and slam poet Saul Williams. He seems to have a great deal of faith in the average person, but he's not interested in catering to anyone's tastes. His work is at once purely self-assured and fragile. Williams’ poetic verse quietly but forcefully makes the case for change while the riotous sounds behind him demand it.

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Ethel

Jazzed

A String Quartet Named Ethel

Musically omnivorous group plays with itself and its audience

Calling Ethel a string quartet is like calling Jimi Hendrix a blues guitarist. It’s perfectly accurate and almost completely misleading.

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[click to enlarge]

Flyer on the Wall

“Fuck Face!!”

Torture Victim, Last House on the Left, Calling Kevorkian and Vetalas love kittens while simultaneously hating your guts this Saturday, March 29, at the The Compound (all-ages, $7), 7 p.m. (LM)

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Fashion

Southwest Tastemakers

Kiss spring's perennial blush of coy colors and prim construction goodbye. For the next three months, autumnal layering and earth tones will ram headlong into the nubile silhouettes of summer. The new vernal look is literate, lithe and flecked with mud.

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Sonic Reducer

Gonzalo Rubalcaba Avatar · Jim Noir Jim Noir · DeVotchKa A Mad and Faithful Telling

From the CD’s opening seconds, the ethereal touch, musicality and instinctual rhythmic excitement of Cuban pianist Gonzalo Rubalcaba captivate the ears, heart and brain. Sidemen Yosvany Terry (saxes), Mike Rodriguez (trumpet, flügelhorn) and Albuquerque’s Matt Brewer (bass), who sometimes seems to share a brain with Marcus Gilmore (drums), collaborate with stunning precision. Original compositions from Rubalcaba, Terry and Brewer, whose indirect, disturbingly beautiful “Aspiring to Normalcy,” is a high point, join Horace Silver’s “Peace” (trio) and Alejandro Garcia Caturla’s “Preludio Corto No. 2 for Piano,” arranged for quintet by Rubalcaba. Avatar delivers lyrical contemporary jazz played at a very high level. (MM)

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EVENT HORIZON ()

Why Not?

Why? • indie rock, alt.hip-hop, alt.rock, pop, folk • Go Dark • experimental

If you want a reminder—and not from Radiohead—that hip-hop is everywhere, even in the indie rock that millennials are sorta into (but only after they listen to every goddamn thing they can find by Kendrick Lamar) then trip, trip, trip on down to Sister on Monday, Feb. 19 at 8pm for a recital of sorts by Cincinnati alt-rappers cum indie rock stars, WHY? Founded by a dude named Yoni in the distant and unremembered aughts, WHY? has gained traction among rockish young audiences with their pop-nuanced mash-up of rocanrol and hip-hop. They got all kinda crazy rhythms, jams and flows going on betwixt rock references and may do some drugs; their latest effort is called Moh Lhean, after all. Additionally, the critics at Allmusic have judged their music as “quirky” which oughta count for something, amirite? They do have some pretty righteous tuneage, including works like “George Washington,” “White English” and “Into the Shadows of My Embrace.” Seriously, this one's worth the price of admission and if you're into skinny jeans and man buns, then damn, get out there, girl! The cover is $15 to $18, 21+.
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