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Now in our sixth calendar year
PCR #266  (Vol. 6, No. 17)  This edition is for the week of April 25--May 1, 2005.

"XXX: State of the Union"
 by Mike Smith
In With The Garbage, Out With The New (Order)
 by Vinnie Blesi
Andy Lalino's Departure .... The Omac Project .... The Day of Vengeance"
 by John Lewis
The Exodus of Andy....Buccos Score Huge....King Kong News....King Kong '31
 by Matt Drinnenberg
The Man of Steel....Great Americans....Agree With....No Way!...Jaws: The Story, Part 16
 by Mike Smith
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Couch Potato Confessions by Vinnie B.

In with the Garbage, out with the New (Order)

GarbageOnce in a while I will hear a new song and know right away that I love it. While most music takes repeated listening, this was not the case the first time I heard the song "Queer" from a new group called Garbage back in 1995. Yes, it is hard to believe that the first CD from this group was 10 years ago.

Over the course of those 10 years their output has only been 4 CDs, including their new release, "Bleed Like Me". With a rawer sound than their previous 2 releases, "Bleed Like Me" harkens back to their original CD.

At the time their first CD was released Garbage was relatively unknown. I saw them in a small venue in St. Petersburg Fl., The State Theatre, as they played to small crowd. At the time they were touring in vans. Later, Top 40 radio would pick up the track "Stupid Girl" and Garbage began their meteorite rise to fame. No more touring in a van.

Garbage's second CD, the not-so-cleverly named Version 2.0, had good songs but suffered from overproduction. Just because you can record a gazillion tracks doesn't mean you have to. Some of the classic recordings of our time were recorded to just 4 tracks! They followed up Version 2.0 with the pompous "Beautiful Garbage" which reflected how much they had gotten away from the original vision of their first CD.

Now after a hiatus and a breakup the band is back with a strong release that puts the trash back into the garbage. The cd has plenty of classic Garbage sounds such as "Bad Boyfriend", "Run Baby Run", and the first single "Why Do You Love Me". The best and most surprising song on the cd is the title track, "Bleed Like Me", with its desperate lyrics and down tempo style. The final track "Happy Home" is also one of my favorites with a dirge anthemic ending and poignant lyrics. The only downside to this cd is the ballad, "It's All Over But the Crying" and the senseless "Boys Wanna Fight".

Of course, there would be no Garbage without the diva herself, Shirley Manson on vocals and lyrics. With a toughness and sexiness that I can only compare to Chrissie Hynde of the Pretenders, it is ultimately her edginess and raw sensual prow that propels this CD.

New Order
Also out this month is a new CD from the group, New Order, "Waiting for The Sirens Call". Probably needing some beer money, this essential new wave group continues to put out CDs. I was initially excited when I heard the first single, "Krafty", as I heard a catchy electronic pop song that hinted at New Order's sound when they were good. Upon listening to the CD I became more excited as the first 4 tracks, including "Krafty", all share their same signature sound and have more energy than anything I have heard in recent years from New Order. Unfortunately, after that it quickly deteriorates.

Most of the remaining tracks try to sound hip and contemporary by incorporating elements of current electronic music. And then the female backup singers start and that was about all I could take.

While I am sure this will be a big hit for New Order in Europe, overall it is another disappointing, somewhat boring release from a group that should probably have hung it up already. If the CD was just the first 4 tracks I would call it brilliant, but instead I would have to say it is tedious and best taken in small doses, like English biscuits and tea.


Order Garbage from Amazon.com

Order New Order from Amazon.com

Catch new Garbage tracks on Strange agent Radio

"Couch Potato Confessions" is ©2005 by Vinnie B.  Couch Potato main graphic by Vin Blesi and Nolan Canova.  Webpage design and all graphics herein (except where otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2005 by Nolan B. Canova.