String Cheese Incident offer than a name

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    JAMES M. SPEA

    A rather talented group with a very strange name will perform in Salt Lake City Thursday. The String Cheese Incident, a unique mountain band from Colorado, promises great music and above all else FUN.

    The String Cheese Incident came together near the end of 1993 at “…the precise moment all the planets in our solar system aligned,” according to their recent press release.

    The band is like a single tree sharing many roots. The inside sleeve of their new CD says it best, “How could it be that a brash, guitar toting elf from New Jersey (Bill Nershi), a classically trained Korean violinist with a Jerry fetish (Mike Kang), a down home Okie bass player that bears a strong resemblance to chewbacca (Keith Moseley), and a skin slapping sensitive new age animal from L.A. (Michael Travis) would find themselves in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado making this strange conglomerate of music?”

    Their CD, “Born on the Wrong Planet,” surprised me. Many of the tunes are reminiscent of The Grateful Dead. While another song, “Land’s End,” has more of a new age feel.

    The String Cheese Incident definitely have their own sound, but it’s one that strikes familiar chords. They refer to their special blend of music as “FUNKALATINO-AFROJAZZADELIC BLUEGRASS.” The songs are a mixture of bluegrass, calypso, salsa, afro pop, funk, rock, and jazz.

    Many of the songs are fun and nonsensical. Others are thought provoking. “Bigger isn’t better” is about those little mountain tourist towns that eventually have to grow up.

    “All you people you try to sell the land … You don’t see the problem, you don’t understand … All you’re doin’ is makin’ one big mess … ‘Cause bigger isn’t better and money isn’t happiness,” sings Mike Kang.

    This music will grow on you.

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