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Picks and Pans Review: March

updated 03/05/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/05/1990 AT 01:00 AM EST

Lene Lovich

Rock eccentric Lovich, she of the harrowing, hiccuping voice, checks back in after a long silence. Not much has changed.

A Detroit native who moved to England in the '70s, Lovich is again collaborating with longtime partner Les Chappell on stiff, surreal zombie-tango rock songs with tangled lyrics: "One by one, we will turn out the light/ Steal away in the dead of night/ Take a trip on a twisted knife/ Who will care if you live or die."

Lovich's distinctive voice is still fluctuating exaggeratedly like a Geiger counter in a uranium mine. Listening to the impalingly jagged synthesizer of "Wonderland" and the mock operatic vocal excesses of "Make Believe," one is bound to reflect that, well, they just don't make music like this anymore. Then again, except for Lovich, they never did. The strangest and best selection on the album is "Night-shift," which sounds like Laurie Anderson doing the Addams Family theme. Strange approximations of horns and violins drift in and out, while Lovich's voice lurches and dips like a ride on a wild water flume. All told, this is a bold, garish album, more intriguing than pleasurable. Put it in your collection as an oddity. After all, with her spotty track record, this may be the last Lovich project of the century. (Pathfinder)

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