A combination of the first two New Alliance releases
Stargrazer | deep in the heart of Michigan | 11/05/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"These songs were originally vinyl releases recorded for the Minutemen's New Alliance label between 1986-89. They are compiled onto one CD, "Uno Con Dos." This is simply Mike Watt (Minutemen) and then wife Kira Roessler (Black Flag) playing all-bass duets.
With the exception of a bit of thumb-piano on one song, every sound (and there's quite a few of them) was created with the electric bass. Watt and Kira have a way of weaving in and out of one another, neither playing "lead" in any sort of traditional sense. Yet both buoy up what could have become a cumbersome concept with thick, percolating counterpoint that never sinks into bombast or sludge.
Amongst a robust crop of instrumental originals are a few vocal tunes including a chilly Billie Holiday cover sung by Kira, and Watt gender-switching Sonic Youth's "Pacific Coast Highway" with very creepy results that still retain the original's beautiful middle section.
It's intricate, deep and dark music, from the sprightly "Rabbit and the Porcupine" to the throaty rasp of "Funk One." Several of these performances are embryonic versions of songs that showed up on the first couple fIREHOSE albums -- two of them even resurface as late as Watt's 1995 solo debut, "Ball-hog or Tugboat!"
Both this and the follow up "Justamente Tres" are highly recommended if you want to see another side of these SST punk stalwarts, if you enjoy bass guitar, or if you want to hear something mellow, unexpected, and innovative."