Fun Is Bubbling Up In Spice Girls' Froth

Posted: November 14, 1997

Deep they're not.

A new thing? Hardly.

So why do I harbor a secret ardor for the Spice Girls - the Barbie dolls of pop?

Believe it or not, it's mostly in their music, a frothy bubble bath of Europop whose likes we haven't enjoyed since Abba pulled their own plug.

True to the album's title, there's a global reach in the Girls' short new set - from the Latin carnival vibe of ``Spice Up Your Life'' and flamenco guitar-laced ``Viva Forever'' to the Motown girl-group groove of ``Stop'' and the English-accented, hip-hopped ``Move Over.''

Also stamping their passport are a Madonna-inspired tome of sexual liberation, ``Do It''; the vintage Philly International disco percolations of ``Never Give Up on the Good Times'' (a high point); and the oddball lounge jazz tribute, ``The Lady Is a Vamp.''

Clearly, the creative guys pulling the Spice Girls' strings are students of pop history, and appreciate the cyclical nature of the music biz. (Everything that's old is new again.)

And yes, I'll probably feel terrible in the morning, for having partied all night with these girlies.

But in the meantime . . .

ERYKAH BADU LIVE - Grade: A Erykah Badu - Universal Records

* DOWN HOME BLUES - Grade: B

Gene Harris, Jack McDuff - Concord

* SPICEWORLD - Grade: B-

Spice Girls - Virgin

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