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Joe Buck
Remember the Alimony
Dept. of Ways & Means

This extreme alt.country band from San Francisco delivers some of the shit-kickingest honky-tonk around, full of good old-fashioned twangy guitars and affected country vocals. If it weren't for the smirking sense of humor in the lyrics, Joe Buck could possibly be mistaken for an authentic downhome bar band. But it's the melodramatic excess of booze and country clichés that make this band so much fun. On "Jump Back," vocalist Swayback Dave brawls, "It was last call on a Wednesday/Me 'n' Thirty was shootin' pool when a fella comes up to me and tells me he's gonna take my ass to school/Well, I ain't no king of the eight-ball, couldn't even start to fake/But if you want to play a game with me and my friends, son, it's you that's gonna break." The album also includes beauties like "Drunken Matinee," "She's a Dick" and "Hillbilly Thunder Machine." (Sarah Quelland)

Various Artists
Road Trip: Music From the Motion Picture
DreamWorks Records

Serving up a Luby's Cafeteria-style smorgasbord of musical fodder, this soundtrack really piles it on with Kid Rock's explicit 1996 release "e.m.s.p." ("Early Mornin' Stoned Pimp"), Supergrass' Stonesy pop hit "Pumping on Your Stereo," the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion's funky "Lovin' Machine," late soul diva Minnie Riperton's melodious "Inside My Love" and tracks by the eels, Jungle Brothers, Ween and Ash. It also finds room for nostalgic tunes like Twisted Sister's hard-rock anthem "I Wanna Rock" and Run-D.M.C.'s influential classic "It's Tricky." Buckcherry gives Dramarama's best-known single, "Anything, Anything (I'll Give You)," an even crunchier bite. The soundtrack also introduces Bay Area band the KGB and its upbeat fusion of swingy ska horns, funky bass and hard-pop guitars with "Fortune & Fame." (SQ)

The Irish Rovers
Upon a Shamrock Shore--Songs of Ireland and the Irish

The Irish Rovers are a quartet of Irish émigrés to Canada, three boyos from County Antrim and one from Belfast. Their best-known song was a '60s novelty hit that counts as the most famous Irish song except for that one about Danny Boy: namely, "The Unicorn," in which the tardy beast misses the Ark and drowns. It was a children's song originally performed by Rover Will Millar on a Calgary TV show he had. The Irish Rovers parlayed its fame into 25 albums. This collection of songs from 1968 to '71 shows the more serio-ethnic side of a band known for its comical stuff. Note "Bridget Flynn," a minor-key bachelor's ballad, "Fiddler's Green," a sailing song, and the unrepentant novelty tune "Pigs Can't Fly," which they bill as "the unsweetened version." The chorus runs, "Pigs can't swim/and pigs can't fly/but pigs can see the wind go by/Pigs make lovely household friends/when winter comes and summer ends." Note, as an oddity, "Pennywhistle Peddler," a song that teeters on the edge of psychedelia. It concerns that lovable old ragamuffin who vends penny whistles (probably stuffed with marijuana, if that harpsichord track is any clue). (Richard von Busack)

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From the May 25-31, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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