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Album Review

April 25, 1993|JONATHAN GOLD

PORNO FOR PYROS

"Porno for Pyros"

Warner Bros.

* * *

Ever since Jane's Addiction perversely broke up a couple of years ago, smack in the steepest segment of the band's upward arc, people have wondered about the nature of singer Perry Farrell's replacement project, Porno for Pyros, which was rumored to be a sort of laid-back ethnic-influenced thing in the vein of the French group Les Negresses Verte.

But Farrell only sings one way, or apparently writes one kind of song, and he does it again here--which is not necessarily a bad thing. Here are the abrupt stops and starts, the drowsy two-chord vacillations, the sex-positive frankness we associate with Jane's, maybe more of it than one would like: One song starts, "Ever since the riots / All I really wanted / Was a black girl."

And the Porno for Pyros album sounds remarkably like Farrell's old group--in fact, like an underproduced demo version of a really good Jane's Addiction record, somewhere between the time the notes are decided on and when the magic appears, a road map to the sort of uncharted spaces that became three-dimensional with the addition of Eric Avery's loping bass lines and Dave Navarro's metallic-minimal guitar--but never do, really, here.

New albums are rated on a scale of one star (poor) to four stars (excellent).

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