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By BEVAN HANNAN
The Celibate Rifles. Heaven
THERE couldn't be a more in
spiring Australian combina tion than Rob Younger being producer for The Celibate Rifles.
Younger, who fronted monumental 1970s underground act Radio Bird man. and The Celibate Rifles, the band most responsible for keeping the independent waves rolling in this county during the '80s, are in their own right cult legends. And it is fitting they are riding the influential board
into the '90s.
The Celibate Rifles' last LP, Blind Ear, was one out of the box and as the months tallied into years since that release in 1989, so did the pressure to at least match the effort with Heaven on a Slick.
But guitar snarl for guitar snarl, Heaven on a Slick rates right up there with the best of The Celibate Rifles previous surf rock albums.
Once again their guitar-stoked style harnesses a relentless energy explo sion which avoids the trap of being carried adrift by the overdone rip.
The opening tracks Light of Life
and Cold Wind set the tone and thrust you through a memorable 13-track tube ride.
Happy House and G.D. Absolutely continue the surge before the LP takes a surprising melodic turn to Dream of Night, a keyboard layered cut that wouldn't be out of place on a Mid night Oil set.
Frontman Damien Lovelock's 40 gallon barrel vocals injects The Celi bate Rifles undeniable character though, and then shimmers into new crowd favourite Groovin' in the Land of Love.
The converted can vouch The Cele bite Rifles have been belling out this type of stuff for years.
While they have had to trudge through a certain amount of igno rance, it seems out of place that 10 years on they have become the punt er's pick.
Heaven on a Stick marks the first album for new drummer Nik Rieth while the talented line-up is bolstered by guest appearances by noted vocal ist Lin Buckfield and keyboard whiz
Lovelock's likable humour has lost none of its starch cither, particularly
on the super song S 'n' M TV.
"Still I turn on my TV again/And I cross the threshold of my pain/Thanks for what you've given me/An attention span of minus
A bonus for fans is the inclusion a four track EP - comprising Back in the Red. Sometimes. Bill Bonney Re grets and Jesus on TV - with every Heaven on a Stick CD and cassette. What further prompting do you need? MC 900 FT Jesus. Welcome to My
AHONK.Y pumping out rap? It
seems the sound which was born in the city slums has switched camp to the ranch air of Texas.
MC 900 Ft Jesus, the name Mark Griffin has pinched from a TV evan gelist, made inroads at all points of the globe with his single Truth is Outta Style and this follow-up album is in
the same mould.
Unlike traditional rap, Griffin de livers his lyrics with a calmly spoken voice, although he retains the same sneering manner which is the trade mark of this genre.
But his musical arrangements are most interesting, drawing on jazz and
blues influences to complement the familiar rap elements.
Three of the tracks arc in essence instrumentals with O-Zone at best de scribed as pedestrian.
There are others though that bring out the best of the brass and wind instruments, most notably the clari
This gives the music a '90s Peter Gunn Theme feel and similarly Grif fin himself sounds like his vocals have been recorded off a police switch board two-way radio.
Killer Inside Me is the first single from the LP although thebest number is Dancing Barefoot, which is uplifted by subtle scratching and angelic fe male harmonics.
Griffin's lyrics, pleasingly, aren't re petitive and aru rather engaging, espe cially the gonga drum spiced Dali's Handgun.
Adventures in Failure is another interesting expression in what may be a pointer to where rap is headed.
Rita MacNeil. Home I'll Be. (Festi
IF YOU'VE seen the promotional
advertisement for Home I'll Be on
television, there couldn't be a more adequate preview for this Canadian songstress' latest effort.
Rita MacNeil is out of the earthy
ballad mould which has made Foster and Allen so popular in this country and Home I'll Be has been launched as a build-up to her upcoming Austra lian tour.
She has toured here once before, at the end of 1990, and was well-received, prompting her to write the song Jour ney to Australia which has been in cluded on the al bum.
This track incor porates Waltzing Matilda and is de signed to appeal to the Australian audi ence although skep tics may call it a tacky attempt.
There is no doubting MacNeil has an extraordi nary voice and in Canada she has been accredited with Best Vocalist, Album of the Year and Songwriter of the Year awards.
This ability is re flected in Old Flames Nwer Die, and Watch Love Grow Strong.
In short, this would probably make a nice gift for
mum and dad.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1(
?n 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1C
TV 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
LW TITLE ARTIST 1 Love You Right Euphoria
2 Saltwater Julian Lennon 4 Justified & Ancient The KLF
3 Talk About Sex Salt n Pepa
5 Don't Let the Sun Elton/Michael 6 Smells Like Teen Spirit Nirvana
11 Remember the Time Michael Jackson 8 The Globe BAD II 12 Tip 01 My Tongue Diesel
10 Finally Ce Ca Peniston
LW TITLE ARTIST
1 Baby Animals Baby Animals 2 Greatest Hits Salt 'n' Pepa 4 Nevermind Nirvana
7 The Commitments Soundtrack
3 Soul Deep Jimmy Barnes 8 Diamonds and Pearls Prince
6 Dangerous Michael Jackson 5 Waking Up the Neigh
bours Bryan Adams 11 Shepherd Moons Enya 9 Achtung Baby U2
LW TITLE ARTIST 1 Penny Century Clouds
Slipped Away Have A Nice Day Five Lamps The Hard Ons
3 Line Up Psydone Smyle 5 Breakfast Mr Floppy
4 Tribal Voice Yothu Yindl
2 The Hard Ons The Hard Ons
Not Like That Club Hoy
Scrap Metal Scrap Metal Young Blood 3 Various
The Celibate Rifles: new abium rates "right up there" with their best.