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POP MUSIC REVIEW

Liverpool's Rumpled Cast Delivers Stylish Performance

June 20, 1996|SANDY MASUO

When Cast took the stage at the Troubadour on Tuesday, the Liverpool quartet's nondescript, rumpled shirts and relaxed-fit jeans seemed the very antithesis of the meticulously coiffed, vintage mod images (think early Who, Kinks, Faces) that its music evokes. The dozen songs the group played, however, were as crisp and stylish as an Armani suit--and full of nuances that aren't quite as pronounced in the recorded versions.

There were glimmers of the Buffalo Springfield's "For What It's Worth" in "Sandstorm," a touch of Mott the Hoople's "All the Young Dudes" in "Walkaway" and echoes of Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall" in guitarist Liam Tyson's intro to "History."

Keith O'Neill's drumming wasn't quite as over the top as Keith Moon's, yet his manic manner and fervid grimacing certainly recalled the Who drummer, and the exhilarating jam that evolved out of "Two of a Kind" to close the set was an homage to the Who.

Tyson, bassist Peter Wilkinson and frontman John Power generated waves of raw guitar and feedback that swirled around O'Neill until one by one his bandmates left the stage, Power cavalierly flinging his guitar off stage into the waiting arms of a member of the road crew.

Despite the myriad comparisons that Cast's music inspires and the allusions the band itself cultivates, it was the group's genuine, robust personality that made the show a success.

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