Dummies crash into Dillon
DILLON – Only two of the five original Crash Test Dummies will slam into Dillon Wednesday, but they’re still driven to make an impact.Lead singer and guitarist Brad Roberts – who owns the rights to the Crash Test Dummies’ name – joins his brother and original member Dan Roberts on bass and newcomer Saul Zonana on guitar.”We play much more dynamically (at an acoustic show), and everything gets sculpted down to the minimum. Then you build it back up again,” Brad Roberts said. “The acoustic guitars become the rhythm section.”The trio is on a 10-day tour through Santa Fe, N.M., Vail, Aspen, Durango and Reno, Nev. Brad Roberts only tours about two months out of the year these days because he prefers to stay at home with his girlfriend “and have a normal life,” he said.The Crash Test Dummies originated in Winnipeg, Canada, in the late 1980s and sold 400,000 records in their home country, mostly due to the hit single, “Superman’s Song.” The song’s success eventually earned them a Juno Award for Group of the Year in 1991.The Dummies’ second album, “God Shuffled His Feet,” garnered international recognition in 1993. Their single, “Mmm Mmm Mmm” led to three Grammy nominations and three Juno nominations. To date, the album has sold more than 5.5 million copies worldwide.The original lineup – the Roberts brothers, Benjamin Darvill on harmonica, mandolin and guitars, Michel Dorge on drums and Ellen Reid on keyboards, vocals and accordions – have come and gone as the Crash Test Dummies throughout the years, but Brad Roberts says the group has not broken up, nor are there any hard feelings.Darvill lives in England with his wife and child, Dorge lives in Canada with his wife, and Reid is currently studying psychology and sociology. Some of them also are focusing on solo projects, Brad Roberts said.Throughout the years, the Dummies’ sound has morphed – from Brad Roberts using his deep, signature voice to sing falsetto on their fourth album to more electronic or more acoustic sounds. But overall, they describe their sound as “an unusually literate, eclectic brand of pop,” he said.Many songs have been characterized by whimsical, thoughtful and dry-humored lyrics with creative musical arrangements.That being said, Brad Roberts says their latest record, “Puss ‘n’ Boots,” is just a sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll record.Brad Roberts balances the disc with “Songs of the Unforgiven,” scheduled for release this fall. Kimberly Nicoletti can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 245, or at email@example.com.
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