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Buy this CD at ProxisCD OF THE WEEK (April 1999) :

ARID "Little Things of Venom"
(Double-T Music 1999, DTM 911108-2)

Songs (klik de -icoontjes voor audio)
1. At The Close Of Every Day
2. Too Late Tonight
3. All Will Wait
4. Little Things Of Venom
5. Believer
6. Dearly Departed
7. Me And My Melody
8. World Weary Eyes
9. Life
10. Elegy

produced by Dave Anderson
All songs by Jasper Steverlinck & David Du Pré

Musicians :
- Jasper Steverlinck (vocals, guitar)
- David Du Pré (guitars)
- Steven Van Havere (drums)
- Filip Ros (bass)
Gasten :
- Dave Anderson (keyboards)
- David Dewaele (lap steel & slide guitar)
- Martin Ditchum (percussion)
- Steve Sidwell (trumpet)
- Audrey Riley (cello)
- Leo Payne (violin)
- Susan Dench (violin)
- Liz Partridge (viola strings)
- Piet Goddaer (string arrangements)

Recorded at ICP Studio's, Brussels and Lansdowne Studios - London.

Artwork : Herman Houbrechts, Photo : Maarten Vanden Abeele

My opinion

Ten songs, ten little things of venom. Eight to listen to and leave you stunned (only "Life" and "World weary eyes" did dissapoint me). And five songs to cherish, to admire and to cheer ("Too Late Tonight" - the first single - "All will wait", "Dearly Departed" en "Me & My Melody" certainly also "Believer"). That's the round-up of this debut cd of this new band from Belsele.
They didn't appear on the scene out of the blue : the group participated with some succes in the Rock Rally three years ago (they did get to the final), but back then they were sporting a kind of emotional heavy-metal. The "heavy" part has been amputated, the metal has been rusting the way copper turns green or silver gets patina : what is left is a form of very warm, emotional rock with American roots & ambitions.
Thus from now on, Arid is no longer a synonym to "barren, dry, fruitless", but to "Jasper Steverlinck en co". It's never a rip-off, but it's impossible to escape from the Jeff Buckley-comparison in the delicate parts and the Freddie Mercury-colour in the louder passages. Let's hope this guy keeps away from big rivers or wearing a skirt & moustache.
We don't give a s..t about the fact that this group might make it really really big, as can be heard in the corridors of Belgian rock ... if they continue to produce this kind of wonderful music (or better, of course) they have our unconditional support. Our consumer advice on this matter thus is : buy this cd. If you meet the system requirements of having two ears that work and a minimum of good musical taste, you won't regret it a minute.
Or as the early house-DJ's were already saying : Ariiiiiiiiiid.

Sent-in opinions

Yeah ! Arid rocks !!! And you say you don't really like 'Life', but I love it !
So, all you people who are doubting : buy this cd !!!!!
Leo (leo.maet@ping.be).

Yes! Finally found something about Arid! Ok, it's not much, but indeed it's a start! When I heard them play live on Dutch radio some weeks ago, I immediately went out the next day to go and buy the cd, Little Things of Venom. Since then, it hasn't left my cd-player, that's how much I like it! When I had heard them on the radio, not having read or heard about the band yet, the first thing that came to my mind was Jeff Buckley, which now seems a comparison often made. I think Jasper Steverlinck's style of singing does touch on that of Jeff's, especially in the high notes, and also in the sensitivity of the lyrics. Loving Jeff Buckley, that is a good thing, but I would see Arid as a independent group, making beautiful music. Apart from a definite favourite of mine, Dearly Departed, the songs At the Close of Every Day, Too Late Tonight ("Don't Break Every Red Rose"), All Will Wait (love the part in which they get loud), and also World Weary Eyes and Life are the most outstanding ones for me on this album. So; sorry Dirk, I just don't see how you can not like Life, with the different tempos, going from slow to fast, soft to loud. Songs that are still growing on me are Believer and Elegy. Until now, only the haunting beginning of the title song Little Things of Venom catches my attention, which after that kind of drops. Margreet Baalman

I had heard the song "Believer" on Kink fm ... hmm, nice my thoughts went. When I later heard the song "Life" on @lter 8 I thought "RUN" to the record store, and since I've been the proud owner of "little things of venom". If that cd hadn't been grey, I would've played it so much it had become grey, and this is certainly also true for "World Weary Eyes". What a wonderful song!
PS: Why does all the good stuff comes from Belgium (SOULWAX, dEUS, K's Choice). I always "discover" them too late.
Patty van Ruijven (Ruijven@kabelfoon.nl)

And your opinion?
Did I get it all wrong, or was I spot-on ? Do you want to share your opinion about this cd ? Send it in, and I'll put it up here !

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This album in the press:

- Tim Coene in "Shuffle" : "Little Things Of Venom has potentiality galore. Arid, it'll be really something. Yet : "everything was meant to sound as dry and sobre as possible", the bio says. A good intention, but why then do the songs of Ben Harper stay glued in your memory, while those of Arid evaporate as twinkling dew drops in the first sunlight?".
- mvs in Humo "From the Rock Rally of '96 we can remember ... the open mouth with which we stood looking at singer Jasper Steverlinck, gifted with an intense charisma and a voice so beautiful it's almost spooky, a voice like we haven't heard since Jeff Buckley. Three years ago Arid didn't have the songs yet ... now there's not a weak one on it. A very beautiful, for a debut even an unbelievably strong, album."
- Uptomusic : "There's room for nicely sensitive moments &nd for more passionately rocking songs that will have both living rooms and concert halls capitulating. 'Little Things of Venom' is a very convincing debut of a group that has everything to make it big."
- Plato Mania- Free magazine by/for music lovers, no. 121, April 23, 1999, by Louk Vanderschuren : "we hereby proclaim the debut album of Arid -from Ghent- Spring Record Of The Year. Why? Well, Arid not only has the theatrical ways of U2 and Jeff Buckley, but also has the talent to write addictive pop songs. ...So Little Things Of Venom is a very mature pop album, with which Arid can appeal to Counting Crows' as well as to dEUS' fans. Because Arid is exciting and accesible at the same time, they can become really big. The American deal with Columbia has already been made, so go out now and enjoy Arid-when-they-were-still-small while you still can!"

Did you see a good (or bad) review of this album ? Tell me about it !

More about this group :

- Arid-bio on this website.
- No sign of an official website yet. Double T seems to have registered a domain name now, but nothing's there yet (www.double-t-music.com)
- a report of the first American reactions to Arid at Het Nieuwsblad
- Contact : +32/9/223.67.03

Where to buy this CD ?

You can order this CD from a number of locations (prices researched on April 29th, 1999, but nothing guarantees they still are the same when you read this).

Shop
Price of the CD
Shipping + other expenses
Total
Direct Link
Frontstage
658
50
708 fr.
Azur
753
0
694 fr.
 
HVH-Megastore
678
54
732 fr.
 
Proxis
598
95
703 fr.

The lowest price is in yellow, the highest in red. This price comparison doesn't take things into account like deduction of shipping expenses when ordering more than 1 cd, bonus points, differences in guarantees ... Shipping prices are those for customers in Belgium.

Have you seen this record elsewhere on the net, do you own an online-CD-shop with Belgian products in it, or if there's something wrong with my calculations : let me know.

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