Excellent

LITTLE ORPHAN ANI

TYLENOL TALENT

STUPID BLOODY STUPID!

Interview

All the News That Didn't Fit

On the Record

The Olympia Connection, Or Lack Thereof

Excellent

The Numbness Is Just a Bonus

Hiphop City

WEEN ARE THE WORLD

Soul by the Pound

EXCELLENT REAL ROCK QUOTES

Incest is Best

The Rise and Fall of the N-Word

DEXYS MIDNIGHT RUNNERS

If You Don't Have Anything Nice to Say, Tell the Truth Anyway

You Don't Own Me

Summer Lovin'

Stagger Lee

Music to Lose Your Job By

Boy, You Sure Can Take the Fun Out of Music

CINEMATIC CLICHE

Stuart Braithwaite From Mogwai

Going to New York City?

THE CHURCH OF COLTRANE

A Whole N'other Level

Who Says Morrissey Fans Don't Get Laid?

ISSA ROCKA ROLL

Not Modest Enough

Hardly five years had elapsed after Talk Talk's prominence as a high-haired video wonder, before the band lapsed into what some circles regarded as a backslide from their earlier pop success. Their biggest hit, "It's My Life," a visual mix of animation and live action, was innovative only to the MTV crowd. Its softly petulant refrain was more plaintive than rebellious, insuring that the song would never rise to the anthemic proportions of its rougher contemporaries, Billy Idol and Dead Or Alive.

But in 1988, the band's pop treacle had matured and transformed into honey. By that time the group was a duo: Mark Hollis and Tim Friese-Green. The six-song meditation Spirit Of Eden was curiously anti-pop. Eschewing hooks and lengthening their songs by half, leader Mark Hollis' vocals were almost indecipherable. The song lyrics were included, but they were hand written, almost cryptic.

With 1991's Laughing Stock, the duo's bent was obviously a religious one. The album repeated the six-song format of its predecessor, and the cryptic delivery of Hollis' vocals turned mystic. It's a haunting work; lilting, at times sparse, and always contemplative. The album is rock--as shown by the keening feedback of its guitars--but Laughing Stock is rock for ascetics and hermits. It's the last studio work for the group, although its adherents will be pleased to know that Hollis released a critically acclaimed, import-only solo CD last year. A live disc from their last concert is currently available (also import only).