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Archive for February, 2012

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Monkees star Davy Jones dies at age 66

The lead singer of The Monkees, Davy Jones, has died. His rep tells TMZ that he died after suffering a heart attack this morning in Florida. Jones was 66. TMZ confirmed Jones’ death with an official from the medical examiner’s office for Martin County, Fla. Jones is survived by his wife Jessica and four daughters from previous marriages. Jones joined The Monkees in 1965, with Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith and Peter Tork.

Sex Pistols sign new record deal ahead of ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’ re-release

Sex Pistols have signed a new record deal ahead of releasing an expanded and repackaged version of ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’.

The punk legends have inked a deal with Universal Music Catalogue UK to put out a 35th anniversary edition of their classic 1977 album. Other events and releases, currently under wraps, are being planned throughout the year.

Commenting, frontman Johnny Rotten said: Music can be great, when done by the great. The Sex Pistols are the greatest. Universal now has a trophy room, music is the imitation of nature, the Sex Pistols are nature, so please give generously. Thank you.
Karen Simmonds from the label added: “To be given the opportunity to re-evaluate the Sex Pistols catalogue is every music lover’s dream. We’re looking forward to working with the band and celebrating their impact on worldwide culture.”

Meanwhile, to read an exclusive interview with Rotten, where he reveals the full story behind ‘Never Mind The Bollocks’ and this year’s anniversary, pick up the new issue of NME, which is on UK newsstands and available digitally from Wednesday (February 29).

Melvins Roar Back With Two New Releases

The Melvins have always been a busy bunch, issuing new recordings at a rapid pace. The new year will be no different, as a pair of new Melvins releases will hit the streets by summer. March 13th will see the release of an EP, Scion A/V Presents: The Bulls & the Bees (available as a free download via, and on June 5th Ipecac Records will issue the full-length Freak Puke.

“Scion is with the double drummer [lineup] – Coady [Willis] and Jared [Warren] from Big Business. That’s the normal band that we have,” singer-guitarist Buzz Osborne tells Rolling Stone. “We’ve done three albums with them already, and five live albums.”

“Then we also had done some experimenting, where me and Dale [Crover] would play by ourselves, and we called it Melvins Lite. I played with Trevor Dunn in Fantômas and really liked the way he played bass. I hit upon the idea when I saw him play with Nels Cline, and it struck me that me and Dale should play with him for a Melvins record [Freak Puke], with him playing stand-up bass.”

Both releases will be supported by live dates. Whether with Dunn or the regular lineup, Osborne says, “it’s still the Melvins. I don’t think our fans will be confused by that. They’ve understood that we do pretty much what we want, anyway.”

In addition to his Melvins duties, Osborne supplies guitar for Fantômas. Though the band is on hiatus, he says he’s always game: “I would do whatever Mike [Patton] wants to. But it’s really not my deal. It’s really up to him. Fantômas really isn’t a band – it’s more like us trying to interpret Mike’s music. And bear in mind, Fantômas hasn’t been in the studio since 2003.”

What about collaborating with ex-Nirvana bassist/onetime Melvins roadie Krist Novoselic? “We would love to record with Krist,” says Osborne. “That would be great. I don’t know what is going on with him – I see him and talk to him once in a while, but the ex-Nirvana guys, I really don’t have much to do with. It’s not because I don’t want to. Those guys are busy doing whatever it is they’re doing.”

Despite being rulers of the rock underground for decades at this point, Osborne wouldn’t be opposed to some late-in-the-game fame and fortune. “I’ve always thought that millions of people should love our band,” he says. “I’ve never beavered away trying to be obscure, or perversely trying to make it to where everyone’s part of an exclusive club. That should have been obvious from when we signed with Atlantic in ’93.

“I’m not afraid of fame and fortune, if those sorts of things happen,” he says. “I also know, on the other hand, we’re a hard sell. We’re not a normal, easy-to-fit-into-a-category type of band.”

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Jack White confirms a second summer festival appearance

Jack White has confirmed his second European solo appearance of this summer.

The former White Stripes man will play Belgium’s Rock Werchter festival, which takes place in Rotselaar from June 28 – July 1.

Also confirmed to play at the Belgium event are Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, Chase and Status, Pearl Jam, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Florence And The Machine, Justice, The Cure, Elbow, Snow Patrol, Blink-182, Kasabian, Deadmau5 and Skrillex.

For more information about the event and for full ticket details, visit

Jack White will release his debut solo album ‘Blunderbuss’ on April 23. The album contains a total of 13 tracks and will be released through Third Man Records/XL. White will be appearing on US comedy show Saturday Night Live on March 3 to play tracks off the record.

Prior to his appearance at Rock Werchter, White will play a series of live shows in March in the United States. He is also confirmed to appear at Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend on June 23-24, alongside Lana Del Rey and The Maccabees.

Hear Arctic Monkeys’ brand new single ‘R U Mine?’ now

Arctic Monkeys have debuted their brand new single ‘R U Mine?’ online, scroll down to the bottom of the page and click to hear the track.

The track, which does not feature on the band’s 2011 fourth album ‘Suck It And See’, was posted online in the early hours of this morning (February 27). It will be released as a single on March 2.

The band had previously said that they were planning to release “a new tune” before they undertake a lengthy stint across the USA and Canada as support to The Black Keys on their US arena tour.

The Sheffield band have also released a video for ‘R U Mine?’, which features them driving through the streets while the track is given its radio debut on California station KROQ.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Bon Iver – Towers (Official Music Video)

Nabil Elderkin, the filmmaker responsible for Bon Iver’s epic “Holocene” video, directed the third video for Bon Iver, Bon Iver. Today “Towers” premiered at Vimeo:

When Justin sent me a breakdown of what certain parts/lines of the song meant to him I did my best to decode it and curate into something simple, and hopefully the viewer can take from it their own feeling of what the towers represent. It was shot up in Washington state, mostly on Indian-preserved land, and our actor’s name was Mystic. He seemed to be very tuned into the land, and when he said he was also willing to fall into the freezing cold ocean up there (seems a bit sharky too), I knew he was my guy.


Ever wished John Peel’s record collection was yours? Well, soon it will be.

Peel’s collection is being made available to the general public, in the form of an “interactive online museum” [via NME].

The collection is understood to comprise around 25,000 LPs, 40,000 singles and “many thousands” of CDs. It’s going to be represented online as part of The Space, a new “experimental digital service” managed and largely funded by the Arts Council, with support from the BBC.

Tom Barker, Director of the John Peel Centre for Creative Arts, comments: “It is the first step in creating an interactive online museum with access to the entire collection, one of the most important archives in modern music history.”

Frank Prendergast of Eye Film And Television adds: “The idea is to digitally recreate John’s home studio and record collection, which users will be able to interact with and contribute to, while viewing Peel’s personal notes, archive performances and new filmed interviews with musicians.”

“We’re very happy that we’ve finally found a way to make John’s amazing collection available to his fans, as he would have wanted,” says Peel’s widow, Sheila Ravenscroft. This project is only the beginning of something very exciting.”

Precisely how this “interactive online museum” will work, and what users will actually be able to do with it, are ambiguous at present. What is known is that The Space will be live over the period May-October 2012, across various platforms – including PCs, smartphones and digital freeview TV. The project is receiving up to £3.5m of funding from Arts Council England.

The End Of CDs: Russian Retailer Latest To Take Music Off Shelves

It’s not just in western markets that content sales are moving rapidly from physical to digital. One of Russia’s largest electronics retailers says it will stop selling music CDs from mid-March.

M.Video says music CD sales fell by 3.5 times in the last two years.

“Discs with video and software are still on sale but, in the next two years, the retailer wants to transfer the sale of all media products on to the internet,” Vedomosti reports. “It will sell music, software and movies through the online store, not physical media.”

Content is not M.Video’s main business as much as home electronics goods. That diversity at least stands it in good stead.

Just as in publishing and other sectors, the drop-off in physical sales is becoming so pronounced that many publishers and retailers are deciding simply to get out of the physical game and to seek a more viable digital alternative.

Tower Records, Virgin Megastore and Zavvi are amongst those whose bricks and mortar have crumbled. HMV (LSE: HMV), on which labels depend for much of the UK sales which still make up the lion’s share of music revenue, was rescued from a default last month only because those labels wrote off debt by taking equity in the company.

Russian recorded music sales fell by 46 percent between 2006 and 2011, and physical sales fell by 35 percent in 2010 alone, according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. But the country’s online population is booming.

As Livenation Labs emerging technology SVP Ethan Kaplan (a former Warner Bros. Records technology executive) says: “When people talk about ‘saving’ the music business, they’re talking about saving a business that doesn’t exist anymore. It’s gone. Selling records in to stores, that’s not a sustainable business.”

Music strategist Mark Mulligan told an industry event in London on Thursday: “If HMV disappeared off our high street, about half the music market could disappear overnight.”

M.Video online sales rose 90 percent through 2011, pushing company sales up 30 percent.

Friday, February 24, 2012


The Afghan Whigs’ Greg Dulli will be curating this year’s iteration of All Tomorrow’s Parties’ I’ll Be Your Mirror in Asbury Park, New Jersey. Yes, the movie room and the poker room will be making another appearance.

Chosen by Greg Dulli:

THE DIRTBOMBS performing Ultraglide In Black
+ more to be confirmed

Chosen by ATP:

(reforming for IBYM)
+ more to be confirmed

Thursday, February 23, 2012

No New At the Drive-In Music, Sorry

This At the Drive-In station is now operational… sort of. In recent interviews, guitarist Omar Rodriguez-López has explained that the newly-revived ATDI will not record any new music, and that the reunion is mostly about nostalgia and money. Three cheers for honesty.

“We’re not getting any younger and there’s been an offer of money every year,” he told NME. “You’d be a fool and a politician to pretend that wasn’t part of it.”
“Will there be a new album? No, no, no. At the Drive-In is more of a nostalgia thing– it’s songs we wrote when we were all in our 20s and we’re doing a couple of shows”, Rodriguez-López told Kerrang (via NME).

Some more gems of candor from Rodriguez-López: “Obviously [the reunion] is going to be weird. It’s like getting back with your ex-wife, only in this case there are four ex-wives!”, he said in the NME interview.

In addition to their previously announced sets at Coachella, At the Drive-In have also announced a performance at the Benicassim festival in Spain on July 12.
Watch the music video for At the Drive-In’s “One Armed Scissor”, below:

Sleigh Bells: Reign of Terror (Album Review)

Brooklyn duo Sleigh Bells caused a joyful ruckus in 2010 with Treats, a startling debut that crashed Derek Miller’s monster riffs into Alexis Krauss’s girly cooing. Having lost the shock of the new, this more tuneful follow-up privileges Krauss’s pop instincts over Miller’s mayhem. They’ve managed the difficult trick of evolving a gonzoid sound, as the sultry, Pixies-ish ”Road To Hell” attests. “Never Say Die”, meanwhile, opts for insistent baroque pop. Having managed their anger, Reign of Terror feels misnamed. “Demons” and “True Shred Guitar” – the least adulterated tracks – are the standouts here, recalling the lurid fun of their debut. Sophomore slump? not quite, but certainly not the follow up we were hoping for.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Gorillaz – “DoYaThang” (Feat. James Murphy & Andre 3000)

“DoYaThing,” the previously-announced blockbuster collaboration from the Gorillaz, James Murphy, and Andre 3000 is now online in radio-rip form, and we’ve got it streaming below. As promised, Damon Albarn quasi-raps a couple of verses before Andre jumps onto the track and generally rips him to shreds. Also, Murphy sings the chorus in a weirdly squeaky voice. Listen to the whole gleaming trainwreck below. “DoYaThing” will be available as a download via the Converse website from tomorrow but below you can check out a radio rip of the track that aired this afternoon.


Jack White Shares Art, Tracklist For His Solo Album

Jack White’s inaugural solo album Blunderbuss is out April 24 on Third Man Records/Columbia. Leading up to his “Saturday Night Live” performance on March 3, he’s shared the album’s (very, very emo) art, along with the tracklist. Find that below.

01 Missing Pieces
02 Sixteen Saltines
03 Freedom at 21
04 Love Interruption
05 Blunderbuss
06 Hypocritical Kiss
07 Weep Themselves to Sleep
08 I’m Shakin’
09 Trash Tongue Talker
10 Hip (Eponymous) Poor Boy
11 I Guess I Should Go to Sleep
12 On And On And On
13 Take Me With You When You Go

Unknown Mortal Orchestra – “Strangers Are Strange” Video

Never strangers to an odd video concept, Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s new clip for “Strangers Are Strange” involves a highly-stylized, excessively amateur stakeout. Watch the Sam Kristofski-directed clip down below.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Alabama Shakes: “Heavy Chevy”

Now with a television debut and Third Man live single adding space dust to their meteoric rise, Alabama Shakes are hitting the road to do what they do best: stir up and settle down souls in person. A dozen stateside tour dates were added to the spring jaunt today while the Shakes have also shared Boys & Girls bonus cut “Heavy Chevy,” a fine doubleshot of rockabilly espresso ready to cure any listless afternoon. Stream/download the track below alongside lead single “Hold On.”