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Product: Audio CD
Title: The Myth Of Fingerprints: Music From The Motion Picture Soundtrack
Label: Velvel Records
Artist: David Bridie, John Phillips
Rating: 4/5
Customer rating - 4 out of 5
the myth of fingerprints

The pacing is often so slow it resembles portraiture. Nonetheless, first-time director/writer Bart Freundlich has made an interesting film about the dynamics of an American family gathered in their New England home for a holiday. Two of the four children find the prospect of a Thanksgiving with family merely dreadful. Daughter Leigh finds it amusing, and Warren finds it terrifying. However, the kids are doing their best to take things in stride. Fiery-haired Mia indulges in a little uninspired coupling with her humorless boyfriend Elliot, unwilling to relinquish the moment's pleasure as the train draws up to the station where little sister Leigh waits to meet them. Another of the returning siblings, Jake, thumps his way along the highway while he's driving to the homestead with his girlfriend. Warren arrives alone. That's because he's still in love with Daphne, the hometown girl who dumped him, and left him wandering the world a wounded man. The reticent Warren is the character most pulverized in the crucible of this dysfunctional family. While Jake and Mia and Leigh are content to ignore their abrasive and uncommunicative father, Warren feels crushed in his brooding presence. With the arrival on the scene of Daphne, Warren's ex-girlfriend, Warren has renewed doubts about his place in the family universe and looks to Daphne for the answers. Warren has rightly suspected that the reason Daphne dumped him had something to do with Hal, his father. Self-absorbed and unable to express affection, Hal is played by the versatile Roy Scheider. He's about as convivial as the cloudy, early-winter landscape, filmed adroitly and in picture-perfect fashion by cameraman Stephen Kasmierski. The other characters, too, are caught up in the simmering pot of family pathology. In an early scene, daughter Mia's temper reaches flash point when she excoriates her fresh-faced and seemingly non-plussed younger sister Leigh. Apparently, she doesn't like being the subject of conversation, especially when it concerns her mating habits. Mia is no more temperate with her significant other, Elliot. An essentially clueless therapist, Elliot doesn't understand Mia and more than he understands that little sister Leigh is pitching him. Would you invite this man to your dinner party? Blythe Danner , as Lena, plays the mother of this emotionally bankrupt brood. Lena's maternal instincts are never enough to dispel the chronic insecurity that inhabit these personalities. Is she anything more than the classic enabler of her husband's boorish behavior? . She tells her daughter Leigh she loves Hal for a " whole lot of reasons" but these are never sufficiently explained. Maybe it's just for his looks, which are frequently pained. That would appear to be a weakness of plot rather than any fault of Scheider's, the two-time academy award winning actor. In fact, we're not ever clear about just what Hal's problem actually might be, except that he insists on acting like a jerk. Without more flesh on the story skeleton, we might just as well think he's bothered by a painful gallstone. The Myth of Fingerprints doesn't go rushing down the rails like a runaway train. It's more like a sailboat, pitching around in choppy waters, sometimes catching wind, other times becalmed. It touches the heartstrings on occasion, but seems to prefer cerebral issues, and even nonsensical ones as when two stoned-out neighborhood boys lead a dinner conversation about the mystical qualities of mustard. It's about the stamp of family identity, implied in the film's title to be a myth and, for Hals' children, something to escape. One could empathize a little more with these characters if they were a bit more emotional than they are. Instead, they are quietly disturbed, exhibiting their discomfiture in fleeting glances and raised eyebrows. A 'happy ending' is a manner of speaking for these folks.

Product: Audio CD
Title: Patience
Label: Sony
Artist: George Michael
Rating: 3/5
Customer rating - 3 out of 5
OLDER Version 2.0

Having moved on some time ago from his "I Want Your Sex"/"Faith" persona, George Michael has settled into being content with just releasing lush-sounding, sometimes monotonous, but occasionally interesting records every, oh, seven or eight years or so. PATIENCE follows that pattern quite well, which is unfortunate as it makes listening somewhat of a chore in parts. As with his last two albums, the singer focuses too heavily on languid, almost yawn-inducing ballads--yes, they're very pretty, but so is a newly painted house, at which point a quickie nap is favorable to watching the paint dry(there's a point in there somewhere). The problem with George's later balladry(as opposed to the gorgeous "Father Figure" or "One More Try") has alot to do with melody, or maybe the lack thereof--the newer material often not only sounds dull, but lazy as far as melody and hook are concerned. His uptempo work remains his saving grace-- witness the world-class "Amazing", "Flawless", "Cars and Trains", and the truly fantastic(and slightly old-school-sounding-Michael) "Freek". Overall, those who loved LISTEN WITHOUT PREJUDICE or the snooze-inducing OLDER will probably be pleased, and those who miss the days of FAITH,well.......waiting in vain is an often disheartening task.

Product: Audio CD
Title: DLR Band
Label: Wawazat Records
Artist: David Lee Roth
Rating: 5/5
Customer rating - 5 out of 5
Awesome return

The best thing to come from DLR or from Van Halen since Dave's last album. Is really a return to classic VH sound. If you like classic Van Halen you will love this album, John Lowery (currently with Marilyn Manson) got his start here and he is brilliant.

Product: Audio CD
Title: River Town
Artist: Brian Lodge
Rating: 5/5
Customer rating - 5 out of 5
Edgy, Thoughtful, and Distinctive

As someone who has followed Lodge's career in the Northeast, I was thrilled to have Brian's soulful and wistful original music recorded on something other than a tape in my bootleg collection. This wonderful compilation does not disappoint! From the haunting "Call" (a longtime crowd-pleasing live staple) to the newer "Cafe Racer", this album projects a tangible sensation that many of us who live in Northeastern urban areas can relate to implicitly. Those of us from Trenton, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and Baltimore know what he means as he describes the vibrant past through the eyes of the present. I love this record - and I know you will too!