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Thursday, August 26, 2004
photo Noises Off! 'Sex-farce' comedy hits UA

Theater's transparency and best comedic efforts will riotously grace the University of Arizona next week when a play-within-a-play favorite turns decibel meters on with its loudly laughing audience.

Sept. 1-12, the UA's Arizona Repertory Theatre will present "Noises Off!," a stage play by British playwright Michael Frayn, in the Marroney Theatre.

The play, which also showed earlier this summer, follows an inept acting troupe on- and off-stage as they spend three months together rehearsing for, and performing, a touring British sex-farce. [Read article]

photo CCP’s new curator talks photography

Britt Salvesen can’t wait to get her carefully gloved hands all over the bounty of photographic treasures stashed in the confines of the Center for Creative Photography.

Now that she has been hired as the CCP’s new curator, she’ll finally get a chance to help make the best of the CCP’s impressive collection.

Salvesen, who for two and a half years, has worked at the Milwaukee Art Museum as the associate curator of prints, drawings and photographs, will officially join the CCP in October. [Read article]

photo Braff grows in "Garden"

"Garden State," written, directed and starring "Scrubs" actor Zach Braff, is a pleasantly surprising shot in the arm that has me mulling over what other supposedly vapid TV thespians may have the ability to create a film with similar weight.

Maybe this fall David Schwimmer will start production on a screen adaptation of Celine's "Death on the Installment Plan." Doubtful.

A monster of a departure from his quirky, ho-hum character on "Scrubs," Braff is all about the melancholy in "Garden State." He plays Andrew Largeman, a medication-addled struggling Los Angeles actor who makes ends meet by waiting tables at a Vietnamese restaurant. His biggest role was as a "special needs" football player in a made for TV movie. [Read article]

photo Camper parks at City Limits

It seems strange but appropriate that the concept of patriotism has fallen under the same famous definition given to pornography by Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart: “I know it when I see it.”

The word itself (“patriotism,” not “pornography”) is up for grabs and any person of any political persuasion can usually be found grasping at it with butter fingers.

Camper Van Beethoven seems to have captured something about the term in their music. While this patriotism is never stated directly, the sheer eclecticism of their records leaves the listener grasping at terms to describe any one song. “Eye of Fatima (pt. 2),” for example, channels the Middle East through its violin but with an Eastern European tinge in the rhythm. And that’s before they start singing and playing, for lack of a better term, rock. [Read article]

photo Noodles and... well, that's about everything

I thought my mom was crazy when she told me there's a restaurant in town that offers "nothing but noodles." After eating at Nothing But Noodles three times, I still think she's crazy, but the food at this restaurant rocks.

Not only are there great Mediterranean, American and Oriental noodle dishes; practically all of them cost less than $6. Most of the dishes start out vegetarian, but you can add chicken breast, lean beef, shrimp, tofu or veggies to any bowl for an extra charge. [Read article]

photo Kweller weird but engaging

Is he high, or is he just like that? I ponder this question every time he plays, and I believe the answer will remain a mystery.

But when it comes down to it, it’s Ben Kweller’s ability to make a bad day turn into a get-up-and-dance day that’s important.

And for me, his show, held Sunday night at City Limits, was the perfect cure for the back-to-school blues.

Although the intimate setting was much more inviting than his previous show at The Marquee Theater in Tempe, he seemed to lack the intensity he had before. [Read article]

photo Unicorns open with quirky rock

A good band is hard to find. A good opening band is more rare still.

When Canadian indie rockers the Unicorns stumbled onstage to warm the crowd up for headliner Ben Kweller on August 22, the mostly high school age crowd were treated to a good band. Unfortunately they seemed a bit out of place.

If it weren't for the fact that they play smart, funny, complex and catchy music, the opening slot might have been a total loss for the Unicorns, Kweller and the crowd alike. The opener, "I Was Born (A Unicorn)" is the perfect intro song: self-referential, boasting at least three melodic hooks, and short. Well, it's short on their album (this year's "Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?"). [Read article]

photo CD Review: Future Soundtrack for America

Various artists - Future Soundtrack for America
8 out of 10

It seems like every band is rocking against Bush these days. It always starts with the punk bands, because they're so anti-establishment. Even, apparently, the whorish corporate ones like Good Charlotte and Simple Plan.

Next comes the old-time rockers. Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi and U2 screaming for change in this country. [Read article]

Tucson and Campus Calendar


Jolie Holland - Solar Culture, 31 E. Toole Road. Cathy Rivers opens the gig for the singer/songwriter who combines folk, jazz, blues and pop. 9 p.m. $8.

(21+) Killswitch Engage with Autumn to Ashes, 18 Visions and CRAZYFIST - The Rock, 136 N. Park Ave. What's that you say? One metal band isn't enough? You need four? OK. 9 p.m.

Women's Equality Day Celebration - Pima County Tucson Women's Comission, 445 E. Speedway Blvd. Come and celebrate women's right to vote on the anniversary of that day. 5 p.m. Free. 624-8318. [Read article]

Last call move will provide more adventure

While working at a newspaper in Ohio, I had the strange fortune of writing a story on an amateur baseball player famous for his temper and venereal diseases.

His name was Clarence "Itchy" Walker, and he was the reason an entire community had been without alcohol for more than 60 years.

According to many news reports and history buffs from Itchy's heyday, he decided one night to have a few drinks at a roadhouse and, you know, punch as many people as he could. He was shanked later that evening. [Read article]

photo Honest band loves Tokyo audience

Audio Karate not good looking, makes good music

Although "Audio Karate" was not their first choice for a name (it was "The Goonz"), these childhood friends have developed a sound to fit it.

With influences like The Smiths, The Descendants and Radiohead, Audio Karate has made their music and their name by creating powerfully pounding melodies with musical formats all their own.

As is common for indie bands, Karate chooses to distance itself from the traditional ruthless dishonestly of the music industry. [Read article]

CD Review: Drive By Truckers - The Dirty South

Drive By Truckers - The Dirty South
8 out of 10

Proud traditions of southern rock live on in Drive-By Truckers' latest album, The Dirty South.

Listeners who cringe in fear whenever a Lynyrd Skynyrd or Charlie Daniels song begins will want to stay far away from Drive-By Truckers. However, those who know the lyrics to "Sweet Home Alabama" by heart will take pleasure in one of the latest additions to southern rock. [Read article]

CD Review: Electrelane - The Power Out

Electrelane - The Power Out
6 out of 10
See also: The Pretenders, Cat Power

The album title is a misnomer conjuring up jokes about how many emos it takes to screw in a light bulb. What these ladies from Brighton really achieve is a kind of sonic illumination.

In their second full-length release, Electrelane fearlessly explores styles ranging from indie to glam to punk to minimalist instrumentals. [Read article]

CD Review: G. Love - The Hustle

G. Love - The Hustle
9 out of 10 stars

Sounds Like: Music to play while having blended drinks with little umbrellas

See Also: Jack Johnson, Jamiroquai, Special Sauce, Ben Harper

This is a good album, and anyone who tells you otherwise is lying to you.

The album starts with its weakest, yet still likeable, song, "Astronaut." Then the songs begin to build momentum, each getting progressively funkier and more sexual in nature. [Read article]

photo CD Review: The Violettes (self titled)

The Violettes (self titled)
7 out of 10 stars

Sounds Like: Portishead after eating bad Indian food

See Also: Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Portishead, Jonas

The more I listen to this album, the more I realize how badly many bands suck right now. So I've decided to drop out of college and move to Minneapolis where I can associate with unadulterated indie bands like The Violettes. [Read article]

photo Interview with Killswitch Engage guitarist

Killswitch Engage has made a lot of noise in the heavy metal scene recently with their third album, "The End of Heartache," and new band members.

They performed on the second stage of Ozzfest last summer and showed up on MTV's fall 2003 Headbangers Ball tour. Joel Stroetzel, one of the band's original guitarists, took time out of their current tour to talk to the Wildcat.

Wildcat: You've said that frontman Howard Jones and drummer Justin Foley helped re-energize the band. I just want to know if you had to kill, switch, or engage anyone to get those guys into your band? [Read article]

photo "Without a Paddle" Sinks

"Without a Paddle" opens with a grainy-film home video circa 1970 of four young boys playing Indiana Jones. The song lyrics playing over the images are, "I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was younger" ("Ooh La La" by The Faces).

If you've seen "Rushmore," you've heard the song. Regardless, the song is basically a summary of how you will feel when you leave the movie. I wish I knew what I know now, when I was 99 minutes younger. [Read article]

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