I Mother Earth offer funk,technology on new CD

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    JAMES M. SPEA

    Modern rock band, “I Mother Earth” also known as IME, just released their second full-length LP entitled “Scenery And Fish.” Besides giving their listeners a newly created sound with a lot more funk, I Mother Earth have packed their new CD with a wealth of other goodies.

    With what continues to be a growing trend in the music industry, many music groups are now including interactive computer programs on their regular released music CDs.

    Following the lead of pioneer artists, such as Peter Gabriel and others, I Mother Earth has added graphics, extra sound and video to their new 12-track music CD. You just put the CD in your Macintosh or Windows 95 computer and enjoy a whole new level of getting to know the group and their music.

    Their 1993 debut LP, “Dig,” received critical acclaim earning them a gold record in Canada and a Juno Award for Best Hard Rock Album, according to their biography. During the three years since the release of “Dig,” I Mother Earth have grown in popularity, traveling back and forth across North America more than five times. The band noted on their interactive-CD that they put more than 200,000 miles on their van.

    IME also toured the festival circuit in Europe alongside groups such as Rage Against The Machine, Primus, Tool, and Stone Temple Pilots. From these experiences, the Canadian band experienced some heavy seasoning.

    According to their biography, they returned from their touring filled with new material and ideas for the making of their second album. However, they decided to throw it all out in favor of starting with something completely fresh and new.

    “I wanted to change things up, throw everything away and start clean,” Christian Tanna, the band’s drummer, said in their biography.

    Jagori Tanna, Christian’s brother and guitarist for the band, added, “Instead of the ‘Don’t fix it if it ain’t broke’ school of thought. I come from the ‘Break it again and make something new’ conviction.”

    This philosophy has definitely kept them out of that “rut” that bands often fall into. They have very distinct changes from song to song. It’s almost like they’re more than one group. No two songs sound alike.

    “One More Astronaut,” is definitely one of the album’s most memorable and catchy tune. It’s a hard-driving, fast groove about a spaceman. On their interactive CD the band explained their purpose for writing yet another “astronaut song.”

    “There’s been hundreds of songs about astronauts over the years, I thought, okay, just one more, but his is the last one ever to be written by anyone, anywhere, forever. This is from the point of view, he’s been away for a long time, he’s lonely and thinking his job ain’t what they told him about in astronaut school.”

    Another great song, “Sense Of Henry,” slows things down a bit and shows the calm side of the group.

    Lead vocalist, Edwin, has a Billy Corgan (Smashing Pumpkins) tone and quality to his voice. It has a raw sometimes distorted-guitar sound that slips and slides through the songs effortlessly. His voice also has a driving quality that keeps pace with the strong instrumental accompaniment.

    Edwin is an instrument in his own right. And word is getting around. According to their biography, Edwin juggled a tight schedule during recording time for their new album. During the day he’d work with I Mother Earth and at night he recorded vocals for Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson’s solo recording.

    “Scenery And Fish” is a great album. The songs will grow on you fast, and the interactive-CD is a nice little bonus.

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