STUDENT GHETTO SUPERSTARS
Ann Arbors Ghettobillies to put it somewhat cryptically play two-legged songs for three-legged gentlemen and ladies with a sense of humor. The bastard lovechildren of Tom Lehrer, the Kinks, Dave Matthews Band and the Rugburns or some other recombination thereof Ghettobillies snuggle right up against that thin line between sublime and silly, between satire and stupidity. And, for the most part, they keep it on the sublime-satire side of the fence. The groups songs succeed in large part due to the familiar acoustic-jammy-rock context see also DMB, Phish and any number of on-campus configurations of guitar-slinging wackys in which the Billies couch their butt-shaking, laugh-along-with-us fun. Its the kind of stuff that gets all the freshmen talking come fall and reminds all the seniors how to let their hair down once finals are through. From the nyah-nyah snottiness of the Ghettobillies classic hits such as "Theme Song" to the riff-on-"Lola" of "Steve," the boys approach subtlety only in the sheer volume and pace of words they throw your way. Its a lyric method wherein, "Shes a beauty queen/ Some things arent what they seem/ Come on and take a chance/ never mind the love in her pants/ and that her name is Steve," goes by in a verbal blur that leaves you laughing if that is your chosen response, of course another verse down the line.
All of this preamble leads to the conclusion that, yes, the Ghettobillies are a fun posse. Nothing to write to Greil Marcus about or anything, but that may be yet another selling point for this mildly brain-engaging fun. Ghettobillies celebrate the Detroit release of their debut CD Some Reseev this Saturday (yes, the distance physically and culturally between Detroit and Ann Arbor necessitates separate CD release soirees) with a performance at Alvins (5756 Cass Ave., near the campus of Wayne State University). Call 313-832-2355 for more info.
GET THE HELL INTO HAMTOWN! AND, NO, THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE BLOWOUT BEING HELD MARCH 11-13
If youve spent any time dallying on the local music circuit these past couple years, you may have heard the must-be-mythic film title Get the Hell Out of Hamtown so often that youd begun to figure on never seeing any product related to it. Guess again, O cynical one. (OK, so maybe Im projecting some of my own cynicism on you, fair reader sorry.) Whether or not youre familiar with the above-mentioned independent, locally produced feature, the upcoming release of the films soundtrack is reason enough to celebrate. Appropriately enough, Planet Ant Records and PrincessCowboy Productions the folks behind the film and music project have planned such a celebration for this Monday at Hamtramcks Motor (3515 Caniff). Kicking out the eclectic soundwaves in live performance style will be currently-starring-as-Garage-in-the-Planet-Ant-play-Garage rockers Park: A Rock Band. Got that? OK, lets move on: Multimedia-Electro future whiz kids, the 19.5 Collective, Britpopsters-in-the-rust belt Caelum Bliss, electric troubadour Scott Fab, hook-infected-infectious-power-pop outfit Atomic Numbers and heartland-thinking-fellers American Mars will all make the stage at Motor a wonderful place to stand near starting at 8:30 p.m. Doors for the party open at 8 p.m. and CDs compiling tracks from these artists and more will be peddled for a mere $8. Who knows, you may just get a glimpse at what Get the Hell Out of Hamtowns plotll be. For more information on the sound track, film or other related Planet Ant (the theater) activities, call 313-365-4948, or visit them on the Web.