Saturday, August 16, 2003
M U S I C   Z O N E

Blackstreet — Level II
(Universal) ***

AFTER a three-year hiatus, Teddy Riley, Mark Middleton, Eric Williams and Chancy Hannibal, better known as Blackstreet, return with a whole bunch of new material for their fourth album, Level II. Their latest single, Wizzy Wow, is a good indicator of what to expect from the new album. The brighter moments on this album come in the form of ballads, where lead vocalist Chancy Hannibal and Eric Williams are in amazing form throughout. Bygones and Baby You’re All I Ever Want prove that the quartet haven’t forgotten how to use their talents to their best advantage

The Matrix Reloaded — Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
(Tips) ***

Don Davis’ music for Matrix film, released in 1999, was one of the most impressive scores we’d ever heard. The Matrix Reloaded takes off where the Matrix soundtrack left us. Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson both conquer the rock/metal area with ease, performing the kind of music you hope to listen, set to a big fight sequence in the film. In Mona Lisa Overdrive and Burly Brawl Davis and Juno Reactor create a 16-minute power-packed orchestral music. The album enlists several familiar players from the first album, including The Deftones, Robe Dougan, Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson. Reloaded also recruits a slew of new artists, including Paul Oakenfold, Linkin Park, Fluke, P.O.D., and Unloco, who collectively take the album to a whole new level of sound. As compilations go, The Matrix Reloaded is an example of what a soundtrack should be: a connection to the movie experience.


Meatloaf — Couldn’t Have Said It Better
(Universal) **

Known for the minirock operas that made his 1977 release Bat Out Of Hell one of the best selling records of all time, Meatloaf delivered a band with two outstanding guitarists and a bunch of strong vocals. Bat`851 and 2 were both fabulous. Surprisingly the album’s best songs are not the Diane Warren-penned heartbreaker You’re Right, I Was Wrong or the well-crafted version of Bob Dylan’s Forever Young, rather they are the songs written by the young composer James Michael and Motley Crue’s Nikki Sixx. Couldn’t Have Said It Better represents itself as a classic Meatloaf album that bristles with bombastic rock songs with a larger-than-life feel.

Album of the month
Radiohead — Hail To The Thief
(Virgin) ***

Hail To The Thief announces Radiohead’s return to form, with more of the guitar rock that dominated their first two albums and less of the techno tinkering that covers their recent discs. As you’d expect from a band as pretentiously arty as Radiohead, Hail To The Thief takes time to sink in. You can easily notice some kind of intensity, due to the fact that Thom’s initial inspiration for these 14 tracks came from dusky, solitary drives around the countryside. The miraculous percussion of Sit Down, Stand Up and the up-beat high-tempo rhythm of Backdrifts. 2+2=5, one of the strongest cuts here, contains all the elements of a Radiohead classic — Thom’s emotive vocals, bassist Colin Greenwood and drummer Phil Selway’s rock-steady backbeat and the guitar assault by Jonny, Yorke and Ed O’Brien. Just like an abstract piece of art, Radiohead’s music, abrupt at first, slowly gets deciphered and finally appreciated.

— Saurabh & Gaurav

The Grrr…eat Music Zone Quiz

1. What was the name of the band Mike Ransome was in before he joined Adema?

2. What does N.E.R.D. stand for?

3. Which Evanescence song has the lyric: "When you cried I’d wipe away all your tears."

4. For what song did Eyurthmics win their first Grammy?

5. Who co-wrote Olivia Newton John’s 1981 super hit Make A Move On Me with John Farrar?

6. Which movie star featured in Melissa Ethridge’s video Come To My Window?

7. Rick Nelson’s sons Gunnar and Matthew recorded a tribute album in 2000. What was the title of the album?

8. Which member of Hot Boys did Nelly do a song with?

9. What was Jocelyn Enriquez’s debut album called?

10. Who features in Allure’s video Head Over Heels besides NAS?


1. Mento Buru

2. No One Ever Really Dies

3. My Immortal

4. Missionary Man

5. Tom Snow

6. Juliette Lewis

7. Like Father Like Sons

8. Lil Wayne

9. Lovely

10. Mariah Carey


Top 10 singles

1. Crazy In Love Beyonce feat. Jay-Z (CU)

2. Unwell Matchbox Twenty (CU)

3. Magic Stick Lil Kin feat. 50 Cent (FD)

4. In Those Jeans Ginuwine (NM)

5. Miss Independent Kelly Clarkson (FD)

6. So Gone Monica (NM)

7. Calling All Angels Train (FD)

8. Intuition Jewel (NE)

9. Right Thurr Chingy (CU)

10. Bring Me To Life Paul McCoy (FD)

(CU): Climbing up (FD): Falling down

(NM): Non-mover (NE): New entry

This feature was published on August 2, 2003