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 ()

Looney for Rooney

Rooney • indie • Run River North • folk rock

There is a striking absence of good rock music on the airwaves today. We have passed the glory days when kids and adults alike bonded over a couple of guitars and a drumset, as new heads try their hand at the more accessible sounds of electronic music and rap. There are those of us, however, who have not forgotten the thrill of playing air guitar and belting along to your favorite song. In his efforts to re-access this primal energy, Robert Schwartzman—the mastermind behind the once-upon-a-time inescapable worm of a tune “Where Did Your Heart Go Missing”—has re-formed his band Rooney. Armed with the upbeat verve of power pop and teeming with inspiration from British Invasion rock, Rooney will be bringing their revival efforts to Launchpad this Tuesday, Aug. 1. The opening performance at this 13+ show will be provided by the somehow simultaneously buoyant and melancholy indie jams of Run River North. The cost to share in the spirit and enthusiasm of revitalized musicians will be a mere $17, so don’t miss out!
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