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Jay-Z/``Reasonable Doubt''

On his debut disc, Jay-Z hits you with rap's trends - Mary J. Blige riffs, Foxy Brown rhymes, Isley Brothers loops and more fashion info than Cindy Crawford For the porn star of the same name, see .

Cynthia Ann Crawford (born February 20, 1966, in Dekalb, Illinois) is an American supermodel, MTV television personality, celebrity endorser, cover girl, and actress.
. But his sassy sas·sy 1  
adj. sas·si·er, sas·si·est
1. Rude and disrespectful; impudent.

2. Lively and spirited; jaunty.

3. Stylish; chic: a sassy little hat.
 way with a lyric transcends the material on ``Reasonable Doubt'' (Roc-A-Fella/Priority).

``I've been around this block too many times/Rocked too many rhymes/Cocked too many nines,'' he raps on ``22 Two's.'' Instead of apologizing for his hustling days, he treats his street career like any CEO (1) (Chief Executive Officer) The highest individual in command of an organization. Typically the president of the company, the CEO reports to the Chairman of the Board.  - as a way to make money that has risks and rewards.

On ``D'Evils'' he admits greed has corrupted him, and on ``Regrets,'' he allows that getting paid has its price. Like the Notorious B.I.G, with whom he shares the mic on ``Brooklyn's Finest,'' Jay-Z is living better now, but hasn't completely left the hood behind. Three Stars

SOURCE: - Tonya Pendleton



Does the world need another Marilyn Manson
For his band, see Marilyn Manson (band).

Brian Hugh Warner (born January 5, 1969), better known by his stage name Marilyn Manson, is an American musician and artist known for his outrageous stage persona and image as the lead singer of the
? We didn't need the first one, but here's similarly structured New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of
 shock act Psychotica anyway.

The group's eponymous debut for American arrives minus frontman front·man  
1. also front man A man who serves as a nominal leader but who lacks real authority.

2. Music A leading singer with a group.
 Patrick Briggs' flashy visuals (at Lollapalooza lol·la·pa·loo·za also lal·la·pa·loo·za  
n. Slang
Something outstanding of its kind.

[Origin unknown.]
, Psychotica's eye-catching opening slot has earned it buzz band status) and you might be hard-pressed to understand the interest.

``Flesh & Bone,'' ``180'' and ``Barcelona'' are built on collisions of industrial instrumentation with razor-sharp hooks and delirious de·lir·i·ous
Of, suffering from, or characteristic of delirium.
 manic energy. Those tracks are good.

Otherwise, a cacophonous ca·coph·o·nous  
Having a harsh, unpleasant sound; discordant.

[From Greek kakoph
 mix of guitars, heavily distorted vocals and keyboards sinks too many cuts in cartoonish muck. One Star

SOURCE: - Howard Cohen cohen
 or kohen

(Hebrew: “priest”) Jewish priest descended from Zadok (a descendant of Aaron), priest at the First Temple of Jerusalem. The biblical priesthood was hereditary and male.

Sponge/``Wax Ecstatic''

Like Bush, Sponge has taken a beating from critics who liken lik·en  
tr.v. lik·ened, lik·en·ing, lik·ens
To see, mention, or show as similar; compare.

[Middle English liknen, from like, similar; see like2
 the group to a musical pawnshop, dealing solely in secondhand angst and used emotions. There's some truth in the charge, as ``Wax Ecstatic'' (Columbia), the Michigan band's follow-up to its breakthrough album, ``Rotting Pinata,'' doesn't break any new ground, and its dark, angular, moody guitar rock lacks the emotional resonance of, say, the Afghan Whigs.

Still, also like Bush, the quintet can rock with a hooky intensity when it wants to, especially on rollicking rol·lick·ing  
Carefree and high-spirited; boisterous: a rollicking celebration.

, up-tempo songs such as ``Silence Is Their Drug,'' the sax-inflected ``My Baby Said,'' and the title track. When things slow down, as in ``The Drag Queens of Memphis,'' ``Velveteen'' or ``Have You Seen Mary,'' Sponge is less striking.

And depending on a consumer's point of view, the 11-song (including a hidden track), 42-minute album is either a welcome display of restraint in this era of hodgepodge 15-track, hourlong CDs or just plain stinginess Stinginess
See also Greed, Miserliness.


Benny, Jack (1894–1974)

the king of penny pinchers.
. Two Stars

SOURCE: - Cary Darling


Harry Connick Jr./``Star Turtle''

Call it coincidence or cross marketing, but Harry Connick Jr. has just released an album with a space theme. The premise: Connick, who also appears in ``Independence Day,'' serves as a New Orleans tour guide to an alien visiting Earth.

Musically, ``Star Turtle'' (Columbia) is the second New Orleans funk album by Connick, once a performer with jazz pianist and heir-to-Sinatra big-band singer ambitions. It feels earthier and looser than 1994's ``She.''

``Reason to Believe'' gallops by with flair and a wink, and while the lyrics in ``Just Like Me'' sound just as dumb as they read, the music is a small pleasure.

Talking about New Orleans is to talk about groove, however, and Connick's solid band offers plenty of that in ``How Do Ya'll Know, Little Farley'' and ``Boozehound booze·hound  
n. Slang
One who drinks alcoholic beverages habitually and excessively.
.'' But what's missing in Connick's music is grit and a lived-in feel. Try as he may, Connick still comes across like a tourist of funk rather than a local. Two Stars

SOURCE: - Fernando Gonzalez

Prince/``Chaos and Disorder''

This 11-track, 39-minute-long, rock album by Prince (or whatever he's calling himself these days) is a peculiar follow-up to last year's underrated ``The Gold Experience.''

Recorded in part at South Beach Studios and originally intended for private use only, ``Chaos and Disorder'' (Warner Bros BROS Brothers
BROS Benefits and Retirement Operations Section (King County, Washington)
BROS Barnes and Richmond Operatic Society (London, UK) 
.) smacks at first like a kiss-off to his label, a way to fulfill his contractual obligations and move on.

But the Purple One can't help himself. There are forgettable for·get·ta·ble  
Fit or apt to be forgotten: a movie with very forgettable characters.

Adj. 1. forgettable - easily forgotten
unforgettable - impossible to forget
 rockers (title track, ``I Like It There''), standard-issue funk (``Dig U Better Dead'') and unneeded curiosities ('60s West Coast folk rock revisited with ``Dinner With Delores'').

But there are also some inspired turns, such as the country-r&b-jazz revue of ``Right the Wrong,'' the blues boogie ``Zannalee'' and ``I Rock, Therefore I Am,'' a delightful mess of a mix of funk, hard rock and r&b with some toasting, rapping and a tip of the hat to Marvin Gaye thrown in for good measure. Two Stars

SOURCE: - Fernando Gonzalez


LeAnn Rimes/``Blue''

The story behind the title track of this 13-year-old's best-selling CD is fast becoming country music legend. ``Blue'' was written for Patsy Cline, but a plane crash in 1963 took her life before she had a chance to record it. The song waited for a voice worthy of the traditional torch country ballad. Garland, Texas, native LeAnn Rimes fills the bill.

Possessing pipes well beyond her age, Rimes might be the most impressive youngster to cut a major country hit. The last comparable artist is raspy rasp·y  
adj. rasp·i·er, rasp·i·est
Rough; grating.

Adj. 1. raspy - unpleasantly harsh or grating in sound; "a gravelly voice"
grating, rasping, gravelly, scratchy, rough
 Tanya Tucker, who at age 12 in the early '70s struck with the adult-oriented ``Delta Dawn.'' Rimes' poise and controlled yodel yodel or yodle (both: yō`dəl), type of wordless singing, joyous in nature, usually associated with the Swiss. It is, in fact, practiced throughout the Alps and, as an importation, in the mountains of Kentucky.  on ``Blue'' is equally remarkable. Commercially, ``Blue'' has crossed over to Billboard's pop singles chart, something that eluded Tucker, not to mention today's hot Shania Twain.

The full-length CD is good as well, mixing other traditional torch/country tunes (``Hurt Me'') with contemporary country material (``My Baby''). It's on the latter that Rimes runs into trouble: Most of ``Blue'' (MCG/Curb) is lyrically suitable for her age and experience, but ``My baby is a full-grown man'' sounds awkward coming from one so young. How full-grown can he be, LeAnn? Three Stars

SOURCE: - Howard Cohen

Gretchen Peters/``The Secret of Life''

Gretchen Peters has written lots of hits, including Martina McBride's career-making ``Independence Day,'' voted 1995 song of the year by the Country Music Association.

``The Secret of Life'' (Imprint) is her first album, and while it's not likely to make her as big a star as McBride, Patty Loveless, George Strait or others who have taken her tunes to the top of the charts, she proves to be as good an interpreter of her own material as anyone.

The hint of huskiness in her voice makes Peters sound like Roseanne Cash at times. She's less interested in Cash-like confession than in hook-conscious songcraft, but that doesn't diminish the emotional power of her songs, whether they're about restlessness (``Waiting for the Light to Turn Green'') or rejection (``On a Bus to St. Cloud'').

On ``Border Town,'' ``This Uncivil War,'' ``A Room With a View'' and the title track, she displays a sharp eye and empathy for the hopes, struggles and little victories of everyday people. Three Stars

SOURCE: - Nick Cristiano


2 Photos

Photo: (1) Jay-Z taps into rap's latest trends on ``Reas onable Doubt.''

(2) Psychotica's music suffers without its visual component - singer Patrick Briggs.
COPYRIGHT 1996 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Article Details
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Title Annotation:L.A. LIFE
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Article Type:Sound Recording Review
Date:Jul 26, 1996

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