samedi, décembre 24, 2005

Rock news, more and more

Neil Halstead Talks New Mojave 3 Album

Matthew Solarski reports:

Now ten years old and wrapping up album number five, Britain's Mojave 3 have surpassed their parent band Slowdive in both longevity and output. In the process, they have quietly knitted a few threads of beauty into the grand musical tapestry with their consistently accomplished stratospheric folk-pop. Pitchfork spoke recently with Mojave 3 mastermind and erstwhile Slowdiver Neil Halstead about the new record, adventures in home studio recording, and the ethics of mice removal.

While you languish in front of this insufferable machine, Halstead is putting the finishing touches on Puzzles Like You, the follow-up to Mojave 3's 2003 album Spoon & Rafter, slated for March 7 release. Like Spoon, Puzzles will bear the esteemed insignia of veteran label 4AD in the UK and Beggars Banquet across the pond. It's the first Mojave 3 long-player recorded entirely in Halstead's own studio, located in Cornwall, England, and brace yourself: in the man's own words, it's "poppier".

"These songs are quite immediate," Halstead mused. "It was a fun process, doing things that are a bit faster. Hopefully it won't put off any Mojave fans."

Nonetheless, Halstead promised Puzzles won't be a huge departure from the sound Mojave 3 devotees have grown to love. While the complete tracklist has not yet been finalized, Halstead was happy to disclose the majority of Puzzles's pieces. They include "Truck-Driving Man", "Puzzles Like You", "Running With Your Eyes Closed", "Big Star Baby", "Breaking the Ice", "Most Days", "Ghostship Waiting", "You've Said It Before", "Star In Sky", and "The Mutineer".

Independent home recording proved a "learning experience" for Halstead and company. The band's recording efforts were thwarted at first, when a horde of mice infested the rural studio, scampering atop equipment and causing all sorts of mousy mischief. Locals suggested toxins, but Halstead and friends "struggled with the concept of poisoning a bunch of mice." Graciously, the critters moved on and the merciful Mojave were free to embrace the next challenge: mixing.

That "was a bit of a disaster," Halstead lamented, so at 4AD's suggestion, the band enlisted one Victor Van Vugt to mix Puzzles Like You. Triple V has produced records by Nick Cave, Beth Orton, and Luna, and mixed PJ Harvey's Mercury Prize-winning Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea. With Van Vugt on the reels, things progressed swimmingly, and mixing wrapped up in late November. Only mastering remains, according to Halstead, putting Puzzles on track for the March 7 release. Those curious to sample the sound of Puzzles may coast on over to, where Halstead has posted an unmixed version of "Big Star Baby". The breezy number features Halstead crooning choice lyrics like, "Everyone I've ever loved / Has been some kind of fuck-up." Totally heartfelt, we kid you not.

And since we had Neil Halstead on the phone, we had to ask: a Slowdive reunion? Unlikely, he said. While not against the idea, Halstead claimed he has a full platter of present interests and wonders if Slowdive are relevant enough to even warrant a reunion. Besides, "I think we sold our pedals, anyway." For shame!

* Mojave 3:
* 4AD:

Ex-Blur Guitarist Graham Coxon Preps New Solo Album

Matthew Solarski reports:

According to several online polls, Graham Coxon is, by unanimous vote, everyone's favorite bespectacled ex-Blur guitarist. Now for something decidedly non-fabricated: Coxon has a brand-gobsmacking-new solo album on the way, entitled Love Travels at Illegal Speeds and due out March 13 in G.C.'s native UK, courtesy of Parlophone Records.

Love Travels will follow up Coxon's well-received 2004 opus Happiness in Magazines, and will be heralded February 27 by the single "Standing On My Own Again"...

* Graham Coxon:

Sam Coomes Talks New Quasi Record

Amy Phillips and Kati Llewellyn report:

Sam Coomes and Janet Weiss lack blood relations, aren't married (anymore), don't only function in a red and white world, and perhaps most importantly, had nothing to do with "Who's a Big Baby?"

Nope, the male/female guitar/drums duo that makes up Quasi is only responsible for When the Going Gets Dark, a new album due out via Touch & Go on March 21. In order to get the full scoop and keep the White Stripes comparison filler to a minimum, Pitchfork spoke with Coomes last week regarding the new album, tour plans, and side projects.

"I suppose it's not going to be earth-shattering," Coomes said of When the Going Gets Dark. "Originally I was calling it `neoclassicism'-- not like Mozart classicism, but classic rock, or even jazz or reggae-- all the records that are sort of band-oriented, you know, drums and bass and guitar and piano... before all kinds of fancy production and electronics and shit like that started kind of dictating the sounds of records. We didn't stick entirely to that in the end, but it's more like that-- just sort of guitar, drums, bass, singin'-- simple instrumentation."

Hey, take out the word "bass", and that sure sounds like the words of a certain candy cane child.

COomes said that the duo recorded as if they were a quartet, with drums, guitar, piano, and bass making up the majority of the improvisation-based record. Coomes commented, "It still sounds like Quasi, but I feel like we're branching out a little bit."

When the Going Gets Dark was recorded with Steven Wray Lobdell (Davis Redford Triad, Faust) in his Portland studio and sent off for Dave Fridmann's mixing treatment. "It was getting out of hand," Coomes said, "so [Dave] helped us out-- sprinkled a little pixie dust on it and it sounds pretty good." Think happy thoughts!

At this point in time, the album is complete aside from the finalized artwork. The tracklist is as follows:

01 Alice the Goon
02 The Rhino
03 When the Going Gets Dark
04 I Don't Know You Anymore
05 Peace and Love
06 Beyond the Sky
07 Presto Change-o
08 Poverty Sucks
09 Merry X-Mas
10 Death Culture Blues
11 Invisible Star

Coomes' side project, Pink Mountain (no, we didn't forget the "tops"), has been bustling as well, with an album slated for release on Frenetic Records... sometime. He explained, "I think Frenetic's trying to get a new distribution thing happening, so it's a little bit up in the air, but it's kind of done and in the can, so when they get together, they'll just be able to roll on it." Coomes described the album as "a prog rock psychedelic improv record of some sort." Honestly, we can't say we're all that surprised.

* Quasi:
* Sleater-Kinney:
* Touch & Go Records:
* Frenetic Records:

Mogwai Reveal Mr. Beast Tracklist

Matthew Solarski reports:

March 6 marks the return of the mighty Mogwai, the Scottish post-rock combo of choice for dreamers young and old. On that hallowed date, Matador will unleash Mr. Beast, the revered fivesome's fifth album proper, featuring ten epic tracks and described by Mogwai manager and erstwhile Creation Records guru Alan McGee as "probably the greatest art rock record that I've been involved in since My Bloody Valentine's Loveless", and "possibly better than Loveless." So, like, post-phenomenal.

Those in the know are forecasting a return to form for the Mogwai, apparently in part a reaction to 2003's deliberately toned-down Happy Music For Happy People. Stuart Braithwaite declares in a Matador press release that he and his bandmates "really missed making a lot of noise!" He goes on to admit: "Although only about 25 percent of the new album is actually noise, that's the one thing we consciously had in mind when we set out."

Nevertheless, what Mr. Beast ain't is Young Team (Reprise), as Braithwaite and company also strove to expand their sonic horizons with this latest release. Since the band's inception, says Stuart, "we knew we were in this for the long haul and we knew we wanted to be making worthwhile, important music until the day our hands stop working, so it serves our purpose to challenge ourselves, on every level." And a noble pursuit that is.

Recorded in Mogwai's Castle of Doom studios and produced by Tony Doogan, Mr. Beast features contributions from composer Craig Armstrong, who lends keyboards to the track "I Chose Horses", and Tetsuya Fukagawa of Japanese post-hardcore epic-mongers Envy (signed to Mogwai's own Rock Action label), who shares his lovely vocals on the same track.

And now, the numbers of the Beast:

01 Auto Rock
02 Glasgow Mega-Snake
03 Acid Food
04 Travel Is Dangerous
05 Team Handed
06 Friend of the Night
07 Emergency Trap
08 Folk Death 95
09 I Chose Horses
10 We're No Here

* Mogwai:
* Matador:

J Mascis Goes Stoner Rock With New Band

Rob Kleckner reports:

If you've ever thought to yourself, "J Mascis' guitar solos piss me off", well, maybe his drum solos will touch you in the right spot. The long-haired dude from the recently-reunited Dinosaur Jr. is now behind the kit in a new stoner rock band: Witch. Standing in front of J in Witch are Kyle Thomas of Feathers on vox, Asa Irons (also of Feathers) on guitar, and Mascis' longtime pal Dave Sweetapple on bass.

For those lacking faith in Mascis' ability to pull a reverse Dave Grohl, have no fear. He was originally the drummer in Deep Wound, his pre-Dino Jr. hardcore band with Lou Barlow, and has pounded the skins with people like Mike Watt, Epic Soundtracks, the Velvet Monkeys, and Gobblehoof, as well as on various Dinosaur Jr. records.

As for Feathers... why does that name sound familiar? Well, the eight-piece Vermont band bearing crazy mountain instruments like the dulcimer and the lap harp have been opening for quite a few big shots lately, like Sufjan Stevens, Smog, Bonnie "Prince" Billy, and, of course, Dinosaur Jr. They also guested on Devendra Banhart's Cripple Crow album (hey, who didn't?), and self-released an album last summer.

Witch's self-titled debut album, recorded with John Agnello (Dinosaur Jr., Son Volt, Screaming Trees) is due out on Tee Pee Records on March 7, 2006. The tracklist is short. This either means no bang for your buck or, more likely, lots and lots of solos. Check it out and don't let track three put you to sleep:

01 Changing
02 Seer
03 Rip Van Winkle
04 Hex
05 Hand of Glory
06 Black Saint

Additionally, a 7" will come out on January 10 as a split release between Tee Pee and the UK label Damaged Goods, featuring "Soul of Fire" and an early version of "Rip Van Winkle".

* J Mascis:
* Dinosaur Jr.:
* Tee Pee:

Tool Album in April:

Tool has reportedly begun the mixing process on their new album.

The disc will be the first since 2001's 'Lateralus' and could be in stores by April. On December 20th the band will release 'Schism' and 'Parabola', two DVD's witch feature the songs and music videos they are named after, commentary tracks and unreleased remixes. A live DVD is also said to be in the works.

Prince to record new album:

Paisley loving pop legend Prince has signed a new record deal with Universal and is set to release a new album entitled `3121'.

The record, Prince's first since 2004's `Musicology', will be preceded by the single `Te Amo Corazon', the video for which was directed by Hollywood actress Salma Hayek.

The video will be available for download from Prince's NPG Music Club site on December 13 reports Billboard and a press conference to reveal more details about the new material has been called in Los Angeles for the same day. The album will reportedly be supported by a tour sometime in 2006.

Mastodon release strategy:

Mastodon drummer Brann Dailor recently spoke to Revolver magazine about the group's upcoming Warner Bros. debut, tentatively due late summer 2006.

"We want the whole thing to flow together as one big piece of music, where the end of one song links up with the beginning of the next one," he said. "We want the whole experience to be like movements in a symphony."

Secret Machines tracklisting:

Secret Machines have revealed the tracklisting for their new album '10 Silver Drops'.

The eight-track album, the follow-up to 2004's 'Now Here Is Nowhere', is due out in April next year.

The full album tracklisting is as follows:

'Alone, Jealous and Stoned'
'All at Once (It's Not Important)'
'Lightning Blue Eyes'
'Daddy's in the Doldrums'
'I Hate Pretending'
'Faded Lines'
'I Want To Know'
'1,000 Seconds'

A limited 12" vinyl single, 'Alone, Jealous And Stoned', will be released ahead of the LP on January 16.

Mudhoney new album:

Mudhoney have announced details of their first album since 2002's `Since We've Become Transluscent'.

Entitled `Under A Billion Suns' the record is set for release on March 7 via Subpop and is said to see the band explore "a more snidely political-fueled side" according the labels official website.

Audioslave prepare new album:

Audioslave's latest album isn't even a year old yet and the band is already preparing to enter the studio in January to record their third studio album.

Brendan O'Brien, who has also produced albums for Soundgarden and Rage Against the Machine, is expected to produce the new disc.

William Orbit album:

Grammy Award-winning writer/producer and contemporary music visionary, William Orbit, returns with an eagerly anticipated new album `Hello Waveforms' on Sanctuary Records out on February 7th.

His first solo release since 2000's critically acclaimed `Pieces in a Modern Style', the new album was performed and produced by William. `Hello Waveforms' is ethereal, ambient, subtle and distinctive in style, fusing strong melodies with electronic synths to produce his definitive signature sound.

Velvet Revolver concept album:

Velvet Revolver have revealed their plans to record a concept album.

Following in the footsteps of Green Day, who received worldwide acclaim for their rock opera 'American Idiot', the band have been working on the LP for months, but are remaining tight-lipped about its content.

"It's something I've been wanting to do since the last Stone Temple Pilots album, since (2001's) 'Shangri-La Dee Da' album, and it never was completely realised," singer (and former Stone Temple Pilot) Scott Weiland said. "You never know until you really completely get there, but it's going in that direction right now."

Bassist Duff McKagan told MTV News: "This album really has to make a statement. We've toured for 18 months. Now we have a brand name. Now we know each other as a band. The first album was just us together at home, a spontaneous product. Now it's time to make that record."

As well as working on the follow-up to velvet revolver's 2004 debut 'Contraband', Weiland has also started on his second solo album, following 1998's '12 Bar Blues'.

He revealed that he intended to release the solo effort a few years ago but joined former Guns n' Roses members Slash, McKagan and drummer Matt Sorum along with Dave Kushner to form Velvet Revolver.

"I think I was looking really for a way out of doing drugs," Weiland said. "Then I kept on thinking the music (they were sending me) was getting better and better and finally I was just like, 'I think that there really might be a real contribution waiting to happen for rock and roll here. And I think if I join this I can really add something to this and make a real contribution.'"

Neither album has a title or release date as yet, but McKagan hinted that the velvet revolver LP may hit stores in Spring...

Once again, thanks goes to Jen from Stratosphere Fanzine

Merry Christmas everyone..!

mercredi, décembre 21, 2005

Rock news, encore


Work on the new Placebo album is completed, and it was produced by Dimitri Tikovoi and mixed by Flood. The fifth, as yet untitled, studio album will be released on Virgin Records on the 13th March 2006. It will feature a track with guest vocals from Alison `VV' Mosshart from the Kills, called `Meds'. Other track titles that can be revealed at this early stage are, the incredible `Space Monkey', another huge twist in the musical tale of Placebo, also the track `Because I Want You'.


Joy Division to record again:

New Order are working on new material for the long-awaited biopic of former Joy Division singer Ian Curtis.

Director and celebrated rock photographer Anton Corbijn - most renowned for his work with U2 - has asked the legendary Manchester four-piece to contribute songs to the film 'Control'.

The biopic, which is based on a book by Ian's widow Deborah, had been planned for a number of years, but the late singer's family were never happy with the proposals until earlier this year.

Bassist Peter Hook told NME: "We were asked to do the soundtrack to the film which I thought was a fucking great idea, for Joy Division to do the music for a Joy Division film because we've never really done a soundtrack before. The soundtrack could include new stuff.

Basically Anton wants to use certain songs by Joy Division so that each song becomes a video. Like the way the 'Atmosphere' video was filmed, he wants to write videos that appear in the film.

"Every time we get accolades for Joy Division it makes [Ian's suicide] sadder, especially with the film. Working on the film has made the whole thing seem more poignant."

It is 25 years since Curtis was found hanging in his home. As a mark of respect to their former singer, New Order have been throwing in Joy Division songs during most of their sets throughout 2005. This culminated in the band playing a set almost entirely made up of Joy Division songs last month, as a tribute to the former Radio 1 DJ John Peel.

Hook said the band are considering playing all-Joy Division sets at some stage in the future. He added: "We have actually talked about doing Joy Division sets and gigs but we haven't actually found our footing yet. We did the festivals and had a bit of time off but because we've played two gigs recently and had the whole UK Hall Of Fame thing we haven't really decided what we're gonna do next. If we deem it to be enjoyable then we'll do it."

Casting for 'Control' is set to begin next spring and the production team are looking for a big screen actor to play the part of Curtis.

Scott Weiland goes solo:

Ex-Stone Temple Pilots / Velvet Revolver frontman Scott Weiland has been working on the follow-up to his 1998 solo set, "12 Bar Blues".

He has 25 songs written but there is no estimated release date.

Weiland recently told Billboard, "I'm constantly writing, all the time. We got off the road about three months ago, and for me, writing is not a chore.

Morrissey gets steamy:

Morrissey has revealed where he's at his most creative - in the bath.

In a Q&A session with fans, the singer said that when moving house, the only thing he's interested in is the quality of the bathroom, as that's where he likes to work on songs.

"I lie (in the bath) for hours singing my head off," he told "Whenever I've moved house, I first call the agent and ask what the bath is like - nothing else much matters."

Morrissey also spoke about the problems with touring his songs. He added: "Most of the songs are very wordy, and there aren't ever any flashy guitar solos, so the time onstage is usually a vocal rat-a-tat-tat without any pause, which is why I can't manage to stay onstage for longer than one hour and 20 minutes - I literally get lockjaw.

"I think it's easy to stay onstage for hours if you just fiddle about with a guitar and keep your head down, but if it's a vocal assault, then it's harder to maintain energy levels."

The singer has just completed work on his new album, 'Ringleader Of The Tormentors', which is set for release in the spring.

Pixies to release double album:

Pixies are to release a double live album with tracks taken from their reunion tours of 2004 and 2005.

'Hey - Live Pixies' is available now on emusic, and will be available in other music stores such as iTunes from January 3. There are no plans to release the album on CD or vinyl.

'Hey' features 28 tracks handpicked by the band, all taken from different shows, reports

The tracklisting, with the shows they're taken from, is:

Disc One:

'Planet of Sound' (Manchester, England - 8/30/2005)
'Debaser' (Norfolk, Virginia - 12/6/2004)
'Gouge Away' (New York - 12/16/2004)
'Ed Is Dead' (Washington DC - 6/13/2005)
'Bone Machine' (Cleveland, Ohio - 6/8/2005)
'No. 13 Baby' (Leeds, England - 8/27/2005)
'Holiday Song' (Raleigh, North Carolina - 6/12/2005)
'I Bleed' (London, England - 6/2/2004)
'Is She Weird?' (Leeds, England - 8/27/2005)
'Caribou' (New York - 12/12/2004)
'Crackity Jones' (Norfolk, Virginia - 12/6/2004)
'Something Against You' (Washington, DC - 12/7/2004)
'Into the White' (Raleigh, North Carolina - 6/12/2005)
'Dead' (New York - 12/11/2005)

Disc Two:

'La La Love You' (Los Angeles, California - 6/2/2005)
'Cactus' (Edinburgh, Scotland - 8/28/2005)
'Wave of Mutilation (UK Surf)' (Indianapolis, Indiana - 6/7/2005)
'Mr. Grieves' (Indianapolis, Indiana - 6/7/2005)
'Nimrod's Son' (Washington DC - 12/8/2004)
'Subbaculthcha' (Leeds, England - 8/27/2005)
'Monkey Gone to Heaven' (Denver, Colorado - 6/5/2005)
'Velouria' (Toronto - 7/9/2005)
'Wave Of Mutilation' (San Francisco, California - 5/30/2005)
'U-Mass' (Boston, Massachusetts - 12/9/2004)
'Here Comes Your Man' (Newport, Rhode Island - 8/6/2005)
'Hey' (Dublin, Ireland - 8/23/2005)
'Vamos' (Washington, DC - 12/7/2004)
'Gigantic' (Norfolk, Virginia - 12/6/2004)

Joey Burns Talks New Calexico Album

Jonah Flicker and Amy Phillips report:

Ennio Morricone's fantasy house band, Calexico, have some surprises in store for their fans when the follow-up to 2003's Feast of Wire comes out this spring. Due April 11 on Quarterstick, their longtime label, Garden Ruin seeks to cement Calexico's reputation as more than just "that indie rock band with Mariachi horns".

"I guess it kind of sounds different from previous records," frontman Joey Burns told Pitchfork earlier this week. "The Southwestern element is downplayed more on this release. It's focusing more on the songs themselves. There's no instrumentals on this record."

Calexico have been riding high recently. They've been out on the road in support of their successful collaboration with Iron & Wine, In the Reins, and finally secured their place in the adult contemporary world when NPR recently aired a performance from this tour. That's got to be worth, like, three OC soundtrack appearances.

Burns said that Calexico's desire to branch out was inspired by working with Iron & Wine and Neko Case (the band appears on her forthcoming album, Fox Confessor Brings the Flood), as well as touring with Wilco. "It's helped us reconnect to the music scene in the States more, and I can see where in the past our music and our style has maybe been hard for people to identity with here, especially outside of the Western states. So having gotten to tour with Wilco and Iron & Wine, and playing festivals like Bonnaroo, has helped us play to bigger audiences and [ask], `What is about us that makes us different?' and 'What else do we have to offer that hasn't been highlighted before?'" "Listening to bands like Iron & Wine and Sufjan Stevens, digging into this tradition of singer/songwriters from the States, has had a big influence," Burns said. "I wanted to put down the nylon string guitar and pick up the steel string guitar, which may sound like a small factor, but for me, what you gravitate towards as far as what you're going to write songs on really does have an influence as far as where the songs are going to go."

Calexico's live improvisations also helped shape the sound of the album. "It's interesting to see what we can do to kind of continue on in the spirit of experimentation, trying new things and coming up with new sounds and new textures and arrangements," Burns said. "I really enjoyed performing and covering the song "Alone Again Or" [by Love] and just having the whole band singing and playing the trumpet, not so much in a Southwestern style, but more in a pop sense. So the first track off the record, "Cruel", is kind of a result of that. I think because of the climate here politically and socially, and the fact that the band is always into reinventing ourselves, we wound up kind of focusing on more of a classic American singer/songwriter or folk or rock influences."

The lyrics on Garden Ruin have more of a liberal political bent than the usual Calexico fare. "Touring a lot in Europe has presented a lot of questions to the band," Burns explained. "How do you feel about your government? Your country's choice for president? What's going on outside the international boundary lines? Living close to the border of Mexico, being born in Montreal, Canada-- these things kind of make you think outside of the TV box and what's being said and what's being focused on. So I think all things have an influence at some point on your life and eventually it kind of settles into your writing and your experiences as you get older, travel about, do music."

Garden Ruin tracklist:

01 Cruel
02 Yours and Mine
03 Bisbee Blue
04 Panic Open String
05 Letter to Bowie Knife Version 2
06 Roka
07 Lucky Dime Version 1
08 Smash
09 Deep Down Version 1
10 Nom de Plume
11 All Systems Red

In addition to the new album and their work on the new Neko Case record, Calexico have other collaborations planned, including work with Gotan Project and singer/songwriter Marianne Dissard (who appeared on Calexico's 2000 album Hot Rail. But there's one group that Calexico want to play with most of all:

"I really want to tour with Broken Social Scene," Burns said. "I love the fact that there's this kind of element of chaos where neither the band nor the audience knows exactly what's going to happen. That element of surprise is so rare these days, with music and stuff that's downloaded and programmed. The spontaneity factor has become squashed in the music business, and so the more you can kind of tap into that or at least open that factor up, I think it's exciting. You might fail and fall on your face, but you usually have fun doing it because you know that you've tried. And just as much as there might be moments where things fall apart, you're going to have those moments that are just sublime, that are just beautiful."

* Calexico:
* Touch and Go/Quarterstick:

New York Dolls work on new material:

New York Dolls are to head back into the studio to record their first album of new material in over 30 years.

On January 15, the band will enter a hometown recording facility with Jack Douglas - producer of albums by Aerosmith, John Lennon, Cheap Trick and New York Dolls themselves.

The album will feature their first entirely new output since 1974's 'Too Much Too Soon'.

Singer David Johansen said: "Everything feels right. We're excited to get back into the studio to record what we feel are the strongest tracks of our careers."

According to the band's label, Roadrunner Records, tracks expected to feature on the LP include 'Punishing World', 'Plenty Of Music' and 'Rainbow Store'.

Following their reformation last year at the insistence of Morrissey, the New York Dolls line-up now features original members Johansen and guitarist Syl Sylvain with Steve Conte (guitar), Sami Yaffa (bass), Brian Delaney (drums) and Brian Koonin (keyboards).

Former bass player Arthur 'Killer' Kane passed away in 2004.

The new album from New York Dolls is scheduled for a summer release next year.

Once again, thanks goes to Jen from Stratosphere Fanzine

mardi, décembre 20, 2005

Green Day

Green Day Bash Bush At End of Year Bash

by Paul Cashmere @ Undercover

Green Day finished 2005 in Melbourne, Australia on Saturday night before 37,000 fans by bashing US President Bush. Lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong sent “a big fuck you to George W. Bush” while he strutted the stage draped in an Australian flag. The audience loved it.

Green Day have just had their best ever year off the back of their angriest ever album. The ‘American Idiot’ record has sold more than 10 million copies now worldwide and the American President should be thanked for the inspiration. “My name is Billie Joe Armstrong and I was sent to make George fucking Bush’s life a fucking nightmare” he screamed, again with full support of the fans.

Armstrong was relentless with the message. “No matter who we elect into office, don’t let them dictate your life. We are the leaders” he said off the back of “Minority”.

This was the Green Day at their best. The vitriolic performance with punctuated with songs from across their entire career dating back to the Operation Ivy cover ‘Knowledge’ which they recorded before the breakthrough album ‘Dookie’.

Armstrong also paid tribute to Australia’s The Living End who he said had sent him a demo tape during Green Day’s first Australian tour some ten years ago. The Living End’s Chris Cheney made two appearances at the show, first dressed up as a Bunny before Green Day hit the stage and later on guitar as they cover the Bobby Fuller 4 classic ‘I Fought The Law’.

Green Day setlist for Melbourne, Telstra Dome, Saturday. December 17.

America Idiot (from American Idiot, 2005)
Jesus of Suburbia (from American Idiot, 2005)
Holiday (from American Idiot, 2005)
St Jimmy (from American Idiot, 2005)
Give Me Novacaine (from American Idiot, 2005)
Longview (from Dookie, 1994)
Hitching A Ride (from Nimrod, 1997)
Brain Stew (from Insomniac, 1995)
Jaded (from Insomniac, 1995)
Knowledge (Operation Ivy cover)
Basket Case (from Dookie, 1994)
She (from Dookie, 1994)
King For A Day/Shout (from Nimrod, 1997, Isley Brothers cover)
Wake Me Up When September Comes (from American Idiot, 2005)
Minority (from Warning, 2000)
I Fought The Law (Bobby Fuller 4 cover)
Boulevard of Broken Dreams (from American Idiot, 2005)
We Are The Champions (Queen cover)
Homecoming (from American Idiot, 2005)
Good Riddance (Time Of My Life)

Maestro Dylan

Bob Dylan – The Musical

by Tim Cashmere @ Undercover

December 20 2005

The songs of Bob Dylan have influenced millions of people in millions of ways and now they’ve influenced a couple of playwrights.

The play ‘The Times They Are A Changin’ will debut on January 25th at San Diego’s ‘Old Globe Theatre’.

It’s not the story of Bob Dylan’s life, since most of us have already heard it and if you haven’t, it’s easy enough to find it, with music and all. Rather a story of a traveling circus where the music of Bob Dylan helps provide narration.

The Times They Are A Changin’ is scheduled to run until March 5th and tickets are on sale from After its run in March, plans for the show are to take it to Broadway.

Dylan was recently named XM Radio’s newest radio DJ.

mercredi, décembre 14, 2005

4AD box

25 years of 4AD boxed up

The immortal 4AD label celebrates its 25th anniversary in spectacular style with the essential budget priced 2CD compilation "1980 Forward - 25 Years Of 4AD" exploring the highways and byways of the label's legendary history.

While 4AD will remain forever associated with the ambient swirls and fairy-tale vocals of the Cocteau Twins and This Mortal Coil, in its first decade it also introduced the world to Bulgarian choral music, worked at the cutting edge of American underground rock music with Throwing Muses, The Pixies and Red House Painters, and even tasted unlikely pop success when Colourbox and A R Kane collaborated (as M/A/R/R/S) on the groundbreaking house collage "Pump Up The Volume", a UK number one single.

Later, after The Breeders had taken the world by storm with "Cannonball" and "The Last Splash", the label could be found releasing rootsy Americana by Tarnation and Mojave 3 and exploring quirky electronica from Iceland's Gus Gus and Birmingham's Magnétophone, as well as enjoying fruitful long-term relationships with artists like Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry Dead Can Dance), Kim Deal, Kristin Hersh and Tanya Donelly, all of whom continue to record for 4AD.

dimanche, décembre 11, 2005

Zappa DVD

Frank Zappa - The Dub Room Special DVD

By Gary Hill from

Envisioned by Zappa in 1992, this is finally seeing the light of day as a DVD in 2005. The video is a very cool one. According to the booklet it was originally conceived as a TV special and includes excerpts from 2 performances. These are intercut with moments of humor and the offbeat view of the world that was so much a part of Frank Zappa. I'm one who really "gets" and appreciates Zappa's avant-garde insight and humor, but I can also understand why some don't. This release truly captures the essence, though.

This one is now a prized possession in my collection. It showcases Zappa's inimitable musical genius. It also shows his brilliance as a humorist, filmographer and a human being. There is some killer music here, but a whole lot more, too. This also includes a full Zappa discography, a documentary of the song "Valley Girl" and a trailer for the Zappa film Baby Snakes. Zappa fanatics, run out and get this ASAP. For those looking to find out what FZ was all about, this is a great place to start your journey. I envy you experiencing all things Zappa for the first time.

Rock news

Kevin Shields comes out of hibernation, The Pet Shop Boys, Morrissey, OutKast, Mojave 3, Dean Wareham and Britta Phillips, and Pretty Girls Make Graves.

Exclusive: Kevin Shields Remixes the Go! Team

Amy Phillips reports:

It's a match made in surround-sound heaven: Kevin Shields, the mysterious, reclusive genius behind My Bloody Valentine, has ventured out of hibernation to create a mega-remix of the Go! Team songs "Ladyflash" and "Huddle Formation", to be included on the forthcoming "Ladyflash" single. Due January 30 on Memphis Industries in the UK, the single will also include a RJD2 remix of "Huddle Formation", a Simian Mobile Disco remix of "Ladyflash", and a brand new Go! Team song, "The Wrath of Mikey". It will be available as a 7", CD, and download.

According to Memphis Industries, the genesis of the Shields collaboration began when label representatives approached him following a Go! Team show. Shields told them that the performance was the greatest concert he had ever seen in his life, and expressed his desire to work with the band. The resulting mix is, according to Memphis' Ollie Jacob, "really really happy". He added, "Kevin Shields out-Go! Teamed the Go! Team."

In other Go! Team news, the band recently turned down the opportunity to open for Duran Duran, and announced a new round of shows in the UK in February and March. Let's cross our fingers for a live Shields Team mash-up.

* The Go! Team:


Pet Shop Boys finish new album:

Electro legends look to Spring 2006 release. Pet Shop Boys have just completed their new album in a West London studio.

The album has been produced by Trevor Horn and features 10 new Tennant/Lowe songs, a short introduction (also written by Tennant/Lowe) and 'Numb', a song by Diane Warren, originally recorded for the 'PopArt' compilation in 2003.

Neil and Chris started writing songs for the album in January and commenced recording with Trevor Horn in May.

Chris Lowe commented: "We've really enjoyed making this album with Trevor and his team and are very happy indeed with the finished result."

Neil Tennant added: "We think it's a great Pet Shop Boys album and also a great Trevor Horn record."

The album is expected to be released worldwide in April 2006.


Morrissey: New album is a fresh start

'Ringleader Of The Tormentors' is no 'continuation' of past work Morrissey has spoken for the first time about his forthcoming album 'Ringleader Of The Tormentors', declaring that it is not a "continuation" of his previous work.

Taking part in an online Q&A with fans for website, the former Smiths frontman spoke about the record and praised the contribution of producer Tony Visconti.

"Firstly, the musicianship is outstanding. Secondly, the songs are very strong, which is a great thing to be able to say this far down the line," he explained. "We were all very unified - everyone gets on very well, we are all very close friends, and everyone works for the common good, and there is never anyone pulling away - as there has been in the past."

He added that the record stood on its own. "It is not a continuation of 'You Are The Quarry', and it has no links to the past. Tony has been a very uplifting influence - has done a great job as producer and I'm honoured to have worked with him."

Talking more generally, Morrissey revealed to his fans that "the birth of each album" had been among his happiest moments in life, adding his other highlights included "Meltdown was also a high spot for me, and selling out the MEN Arena so quickly".


OutKast name new album

The Atlanta duo to release soundtrack to their film Outkast are to release their new album 'Idlewild' in February.

The follow up to 2003's 'Speakerboxx/The Love Below' is not only the duo's new album, but also the soundtrack to their feature film debut.

Set in America's Deep South during the time of the Depression, the film follows the exploits of a struggling musician (played by Andre 3000) and a lovable lothario (Big Boi).

"It's not your typical soundtrack where you have a lot of different artists," Big Boi told Rolling Stone. "It's me and Dre, and Organized Noize doing the production. Sleepy Brown is on the album, a new artist, Janelle Monae and then me and Dre. It's crazy."

Explaining the fact that the album's release date had been put back from December, Big Boi said that the duo were having problems picking a lead-off single from the album.

He said: "There are four songs that we really love and we just want to make sure we pick the right one to come out first. The potential singles are 'The Train', 'Idlewild Blues', 'Foot On The Gas' and 'Cock-A-Doodle-Do'."


Mojave 3 forthcoming new album, due out next March

The new Mojave 3 record is at the very top of my most eagerly anticipated records for '06.


Goldenfiddle reports that Dean & Britta (that's Wareham & Phillips, ex-Luna), have been tapped to provide the soundtrack to the forthcoming film Just Like The Son, which will be directed by Morgan Freeman. They also currently have a couple songs on the soundtrack for The Squid & The Whale, which they also scored...

Dean and Britta are also working on their follow-up album to 2003's lovely, languid L'Avventura and hope for a Spring '06 release. Their freshly redesigned website also has a forum that Britta is hanging out in and will be nice compliment to the Full Of Wishes G500/Luna/D&B HQ as well as the G500 mailing list. If you've never heard any of the D&B stuff, it's really nice. Certainly not light-years away from Luna, but still quite a distinct entity.


Pretty Girls Make Graves Tour in Advance of Album

Kati Llewellyn reports:

Everyone knows that Pretty Girls Make Graves, but we also know that at the end of the month, the Matador Records power-punk band will embark on a grave procession across their home continent. PGMG will hit both the Northwest and the Northeast, before wrapping it all up in mid-December (like a present). Short and sweet.

...remember that PGMG have a new album in the works, following up 2003's The New Romance.

Aimed for an April 2006 release on Matador, the record is said to be completely different than the oldies. It even features some n00bs to the PGMG crew: producer Colin Stewart (Black Mountain) and multi-instrumentalist Leona Marrs (in place of former guitarist Nathan Thelen).

Bassist Derek Fudesco told Canada's, "The difference between Good Health and New Romance is not that big, but sort of big. This one is so much different than both of those. People who liked those two records might not really be into what's going on on this one." Gee, that's descriptive. He also told Milwaukee's Shepherd Express Online that the album is "less guitar-oriented than our other records," and "this is the first record where individual members wrote whole songs. There are a lot of different personalities." Once again, not too helpful.

* Pretty Girls Make Graves:

Note :

Once again, thanks go to the great Jen from Stratosphere Fanzine

That's it & thanks for reading...

jeudi, décembre 08, 2005

CBGB no more..?

It’s All Over For CBGB’s On Halloween ‘06

by Eve Jenkin @ Undercover

December 8 2005

Legendary punk haven CBGB’s has been given until Halloween next year to evacuate the premises.

It has not exactly been kept quiet over the past year that CBGB must find itself a new home, but now that an agreement has been settled on the official vacating of the building, club owner Hilly Kristal has begun to shop around for new venues.

Kristal told MTV News he had been considering locations everywhere from Manhatten to Vegas, and in an official statement said “CBGB will expand and continue to provide great new music for our fans and be a developing ground for new artists, as we've done for over 30 years.”

Although CBGB’s lease officially ended in August 31st this year, Kristal has been paying $16,000US a month on top of his usual rent to continue running the venue from its home of three decades.