Volume 92, Issue 36

Friday, November 6, 1998

bigger than the post


Slim and Spenser super

You've Come A Long Way, BabyVirgin

You may already have heard of Fatboy Slim, thanks to his infectiously catchy summer smash, "The Rockafeller Skank."

As the notorious catch phrase, "Right about now, the funk soul brother," resonates throughout clubs across the world, the release of this first proper album from Norman Cook (a.k.a. Fatboy Slim) serves to cement his status as the most entertaining DJ in dance music today.

The opening strains of "Right Here Right Now" quash any doubt of Cook's abilities. After a minute of atmospheric warbling, the song breaks out into a frenzied explosion of Cook's trademark cacophonous beats. Surprisingly, Cook manages to sustain this energy throughout the entire album. From the standout calypso influenced track "Gangster Tripping" to the motown-inspired "Praise You," there is rarely a dull moment on this record.

It's conceivable this release could go down in history as one of the greatest mainstream dance records ever made.

Occasionally inventive, often invigorating and always fun, You've Come A Long Way, Baby is a welcome breath of fresh air. Check it out. Now.



Jon Spencer is back and his fans will be happy to know the new album ACME has the band back in the saddle. Their 1996 release, Now I Got Worry, revealed a hard punk edge which resurrects his old Pussy Galore stylings. With this new joint think more Orange (1994).

After a thoughtful attempt to escape the clutches of mainstream consumption, this album, released with little fanfare, is "top five of the year" material. Recorded in six different locations, including the Dub Narcotic Studio, ACME is Muddy Waters with turntables. It's a sexy, futuristic heavyweight NYC party 'till dawn effort.

"Calvin" and "High Gear" are hard-rocking tracks which expose the stripped down talent of the threesome. While "Do You Wanna Get Heavy" has an most infectious High Noon bongo groove courtesy Dan Nakamura, a.k.a. "The Automator."

It's all over, there are no more rules. Songs like "Talk About the Blues" and "I Wanna Make it All Right" among others, prove Spencer is recreating rock in his image. The music is raw and uninhibited, a breath of fresh air in a suffering genre.

A very significant album.


To Contact The Arts and Entertainment Department: gazette.entertainment@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1998