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Language: Thick Malt, Weird Cream

Richard Cromelin, Los Angeles Times, 13 November 1983

NOTED SONGWRITERS Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen contribute liner notes to the album, but they don't sing on it. The two records feature members of more than a dozen local bands, including Black Flag, X, the Blasters, the Brat, Plugz and Bangles, but it's not the latest anthology of Los Angeles rock groups. In fact, aside from scattered songs by the likes of Dream Syndicate's Steve Wynn and the Last's Joe Nolte, English as a Second Language contains hardly any straight music at all. Instead, it's four sprawling sides of poetry, conversation, ranting and raving by a cross-section of poets, musicians, performance artists, street characters, music-scene denizens — you name it.

Total word count of piece: 928

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