Bidiniband In the Rock Hall

Bidiniband In the Rock Hall
Like the Paul Quarrington poem, Dave Bidini and company's In the Rock Hall inevitably considers music history, although it isn't particularly interested in dusty references, homage or Cleveland. Instead, it brims with literary allusions, wry storytelling and a handful of hit-and-miss experiments. To varying degrees of success, stylistic about-faces abound. A mid-act choral interlude saves "Popcorn," while ADD voltas leave "Needle Beach/Outboard Motors" half-formed. Conversely, "Last of the Dead Wrong Things" assuredly evolves from a road narrative while nodding to early Clash before dropping a big hair band breakdown. The sprawling "Eunoia" borrows huge sections of Christian Bök's Griffin Prize-winning poem (famed for devoting each section to a single vowel) and sets them to a schizophrenic's playlist, moving from early Beach Boys pop to honky tonk and beyond without feeling forced. Straightahead rockers like "Big Man Go Fast on the Water" give the LP some sheen, but Bidini's at his best when he embraces his lofty ambitions, especially on "Eunoia" and the expansive yet effective title track. (Pheromone)