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Boogie addicts and fans of vintage cock rock are the target audience for Dancin' With the Monkey, by the Heat. Lead vocalist T.R. Angel yowls and growls like the codpiece-wearers of old on blues-rock numbers such as "Can't Be Late," "Dancin' With the Monkey" and "Spin Off on a Tangent," all of which are listenable in their own silly way. But the scorchers are accompanied by "Spell on Me," which pledges a bit too much allegiance to Foreigner, and "Picture on the Floor," a power ballad every bit as chic as feathered hair. Eighties fever: Catch it (The Heat, P.O. Box 480072, Denver, CO 80248). Combo Amazo, by Mary Stribling, is early-morning music. Stribling specializes in jazzy little vocal lines that move from place to place in unexpected ways, and her best compositions support her with melodies that swing gracefully. "One More Minute" and "Mister Komodo" are flat-out charming; "Glass of the Blues" is smoky and beguiling; and "The Lie" suggests a one-woman Roches. A few of Stribling's compositions feel a bit forced, and I would have preferred it if Harry Grainger had left his flute and his piccolo in their respective cases and concentrated instead on coaxing notes from his clarinet and saxophone. But while Combo Amazo won't leave you slack-jawed, it'll probably prompt a smile or two--and that's a good thing (Mondo Blondo Records, P.O. Box 102221, Denver, CO 80250).

Backbeat's e-mail address is: Michael_Roberts@westword.com. While you're online, visit Michael Roberts's Jukebox at www.westword.com.

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