New Chris Connelly Album On The Way

Offspring suffer 'midlife crisis,' Roebuck 'Pops' Staples dead at 84

Damage Manual vocalist and Ministry member Chris Connelly will see a new album — his first in three years — released on February 6, 2001 by Invisible Records. The album, Blonde Exodus, by Chris Connelly and the Bells, was recorded in Chicago and features guest vocalists and musicians. The album moves from "bitter torch songs through paranoid rock and pastoral travelogues" according to the Invisible Records Web site. .... We got a kick out of Ann Powers' clever review of the Offspring's recent Roseland performance, which was headlined "The Teen-Age Angst of the 35-Year-Old Man." Wrote Powers: "There is a point where the average man's midlife crisis parallels the existential angst of a typical teenage boy. Anger at being misunderstood, a wish to flee home and family, an irresistible attraction to supposedly unsuitable women — these impulses inform the work of both John Updike and Eminem." And, according to Powers, they inform the work of the Offspring too. ... It was a shock, to say the least, to learn that Staple Singers founder Roebuck "Pops" Staples had died Tuesday (December 19, 2000) at the age of 84. Staples developed a distinctive, tremolo-heavy electric guitar style that influenced such guitarists as Robbie Robertson, Ry Cooder, J. J. Cale and Eric Clapton. Staples led a group that got its start singing gospel, but in the '60s helped pioneer socially conscious soul music, scoring hits with such masterpieces as "I'll Take You There" and "Respect Yourself." The Associated Press quoted Staples as once saying about the move from gospel to soul: "We just kept on singing and praying, and we let our music carry the message. When people realized that our music still had the message of love, our audience grew — old people came back, and new people kept coming." [Wednesday, December 20, 2000]

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