Capitol times. (Middletown, Pa.) 1982-2013, December 06, 1982, Image 15

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    By Mike Markle
Warren Zevon—The Envoy
Listening to Warren Zevon’s
latest release “The Envoy”
(Asylum) is the audio
equivalent of reading the
Sunday newspaper. It’s all
there in Zevon’s songs—the
hard news, editorials, comic
strips, and advice to the
Zevon has overcome a
drinking problem which flawed
his previous efforts to
concentrate on delivering his
most consistent album to date.
Zevon, the king of west coast
album-oriented-rock, has
surrounded himself with top
level Los Angeles session
musicians—most notably Jeff
Porcaro (of “Toto” fame),
Leland Sklar, and Waddy
The result is a highly
articulate thirty-minute
discourse on the world
according to Zevon.
The most engaging track here
is the title song—opening up
with a haunting synthesizer and
dense drum sound that sets the
serious tone of the
subject—world unrest. The
envoy is, of course, Zevon. His
job description:
Things got hot in El Salvadors
C.l A got caught and couldn’t do no more
He’s got diplomatic immunity
Send the envoy
The strangest tune on the
album is “Jesus Mentioned,” a
confirmation of Zevon’s odd
sense of morbid humor that he
made nationally famous a few
years ago with his novely hit
“Werewolves of London.”
“Jesus Mentioned” tells of
Zevon’s desire to travel to
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Graceland to dig up Elvis and
beg him “to sing about those
heavenly mansions Jesus
mentioned.” (Maybe he wrote
this one back in his drinking
Zevon is uncharacteristically
optimistic in “Let Nothing
Come Between You”—a highly
charged romp that surprisingly
didn’t break into the top-forty.
It is a basic love song
By Marsha Larsen
Second chances don’t often
come along. If you didn’t see
Time Bandits the first time
around, don’t miss this re
released movie, again at area
In the film, six of the
Supreme Being’s dwarf helpers
have stolen the master time
map of the creation. They set
out to rob every era of its
wealth, with the aid of the map,
and to make a killing. The
Supreme Being chases them
through one time warp after
another. At one of their stops,
they pick up Kevin, a 20th
century mini-genius armed with
flashlight and Polaroid camera.
containing a sing-along chorus
that tends to stay in your mind
all day.
Zeyon’s offbeat persona
shines through on “Ain’t That
Pretty at All,” stating that
“I’m going to hurl myself
against the wall/cause I’d
rather feel bad than not feel
anything at all.”
On “The Envoy,” Zevon ex-
hibits his skill at taking a varie
ty of subjects (love, politics,
morbid humor, etc.) and craf
ting them into a highly consis
tent quality album—at this, he
is without peer.
Peter Gabriel—Security
No one has ever accused art
rocker Peter Gabriel of writing
accessible “commercial”
songs. The cover of his fourth
and latest effort “Security” (a
grainy video-still of an alien
creature) symbolizes the
alienating effects of the stark
and obscure songs on the
“Security” appears to be
more of an exercise in modern
record production technology
than an expression of artistic
talent. The album was digitally
recorded and mastered, pro-
The dwarves have burst
through the young boy’s closet
in an unsuccessful attempt to
escape their master.
The seven drop together
through time holes into various
reinvented histories. They meet
Napoleon at a castle in
Castiglione after he has con-
quered and looted Italy. The
mad emperor, obsessed with his
dirninutiveness (he’s only 5’1”),
loves “to see little things hitting
each other.” The slapstick
dwarves a “hit” with him, and
are declared Generals by
Napolean. The single-minded
team, however, rob him of his
loot and escape into the age of
Robin Hood.
Mr. Hood in turn loots them.
Surrounded by his comically
fierce and dirty accomplices --
no merry men, these -- he
“persuades” the midget
marauders to turn over the
goods to the poor.
Kevin is separated from the
band of robber dwarves when
the Evil One shows his hand.
This arch-nemesis of the
Supreme Being wants their
map so that he can recreate the
world in his image. During an
effort to slip from his clutches,
Kevin falls alone through time
and- lands on top of the bullish
minently featuring many state
of-the-art musical instruments
such as the Linn drum syn
Gabriel, an ex-member of
Genesis, extensively uses
African and Carribean drum
rhythms throughout the album,
which often dominate the songs,
strongly reducing the impact of
the keyboards and vocals.
The album opener, “Shock
the Monkey,” is Gabriel’s
follow-up to last year’s cult hit
“Games Without Frontiers.”
The song has received some air
time on progressive F.M. rock
stations and is one of the more
outrageous videos on Music
Television (MTV).
“Shock the Monkey” employs
the essential Gabriel studio
drums, shouted vocals, and
ethereal synthesizers. The re
maining songs use the same
basic technique in varying
degrees, seldom straying from
the avante-garde “techno” for
“Security” is evidence that
artistic expression and modern
technology aren’t always com
Enemy of the People, battling
Agamemnon for control of his
Mycenaean kingdom.
The runaway dwarves even
tually rejoin Kevin and whisk
him away through another
bizarre series of adventures,
peaking at their confrontation
with the Evil One.
This is a fun, funny, fan
tastical movie. George Harrison
produced it through his com
pany, Handmade Films. The
graphics and special effects
show the influence of Yellow
Submarine, a film Harrison
made with the three other
Beatles. Terry Giliam and
Michael Palin, Monty Python
ers, wrote the screenplay, and
their zany humor dominates the
Palin appears in a crazy
cameo role, as does another
Python player, John Cleese, a
fastidious Robin Hood. Sean
Connery is suitably hero-like as
The movie parallels The
Wizard of Oz in a warped way:
Kevin instead of Dorothy;
dwarves instead of Scarecrow,
Tin Man, and Cowardly Lion;
and a time map instead of ruby
slippers. Both movies consist of
episodes woven together by
odysseys of homesick youths.
The Python/Harrison version
departs from its model,
however, in the twisted surprise
conclusion. Time Bandits seems
to take a great delight in pun
ching its fist through a happy
For pure escapist pleasure,
see it.