Sh!t Just Got Weird
Hey kids. For those who might be curious, a full-ish write up of the music from The Roots Picnic is coming tomorrow. In the meantime, here's some really, really weird news from the last week.
Pearl Jam's new album Backspacer will be released this fall and they are currently working on special deals with retailers to release it. Rumors are that they are trying to work out a semi-exclusive deal with Target, similar to what Prince did with his three-disc release LOtUSFLOW3R/MPLSoUND/Elixir earlier this year. They are also working on deals with independent music stores, which would be a huge win for the stores if a deal can be reached. I'm a big fan of independent music stores and it's great that Pearl Jam is considering reaching their fans through those avenues. Pearl Jam also filmed a commercial for Target last week in Seattle, which was directed by Cameron Crowe.
In surreal tour news, Cat Power, The Pretenders and... um... Juliette Lewis are going on tour together. Seriously? Crazypants Lewis? A woman whose voice sounds like galvanized nails being dropped into a garbage disposal while cats fuck? Is touring with the legendary Pretenders and the less-legendary-but-still-awesome Cat Power? Mind = blown.
R. Kelly is back with a mixtape called The Demo Tape, but how can you really top the epic Trapped in the Closet??? The Demo Tape features remixes of a handful of hip-hop songs by Keri Hilson, Lil Wayne and Akon. R. Kelly also features a few new songs of his own on the mixtape. Kelly is also releasing a new album called Untitled, however there is no release date. Of course I can't help but think of this when I hear the name R. Kelly.
|R. Kelly's "Piss on You" Music Videos|
Remember that Juliette Lewis thing from a couple minutes ago? That's not even the weirdest news of the week. The Tony Awards were last night, and among the song-and-dance numbers were artists like Dolly Parton, Elton John, Liza Minelli and... Poison. Yeah, that Poison, the one that Dustin sullied this hallowed site with last week. At the Tony's. With Dolly and Elton. That's it. I'm going back to bed. Nothin' But a Good Time my ass.
Talib Kweli and Mos Def's Black Star reunited last week in New York. Both are set to release new solo albums, The Ecstatic for Mos Def and Prisoner of Consciousness for Kweli. There will apparently be more Black Star shows according to the show organizer, however I could not find any tour dates. (ed. note - me neither, but Taleb Kwali is coming to Milwaukee, all you Midwesterners - don't miss it. More deets here. --TK)
Douchebag extraordinaire Asher Roth is going on tour with Kid Cudi (both performed at this weekend's Roots Picnic) in the cleverly titled The Great Hangover tour. Jackass fratboys and date-rapists-to-be everywhere are no doubt rejoicing, and all I can do is shake my head sadly at Kid Cudi, who is actually pretty decent. He should be a little more picky about his tour mates, since flash-in-the-pan Roth will be a distant memory in a few months. At least, I bloody well hope so, because he's just... awful. Look for Pissboy's scathing review of his performance (I couldn't bring myself to witness it) in the next few days.
Oh hell to the no! A less coked out looking Whitney Houston is supposedly releasing her long-awaited new album on September 1st. The album is still untitled. It seems as though this album has been rumored on and off for a long time now, so we will see if it really happens. And if it does, we'll see how big of a piece of shit it will be. I don't really believe that musicians can be as big as they once were when they were at their pinnacle. I'd rather keep my cherished high school memories of singing "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" in a mall DIY video booth as they are, and untainted with a shitty comeback.
And finally, the return of the Monday Afternoon Playlist!
Felicia: I'm currently listening to The Sounds' new album Crossing the Rubicon, which was released on June 2. I already briefly wrote about the live show here a few weeks ago, so you all know how much I love them. My favorite song on the album is "Beatbox" as well as one of my new favorite songs of the year.
Christian: I have a confession to make. When I wrote my review of Gnarls Barkley's The Odd Couple for the best of 2008 series, I was using a leaked copy of the album I'd downloaded for free. I have since bought the album and destroyed all traces of the download (so technically there's no proof it ever happened...). Why am I telling you this? It turns out that the download in question was missing a track, namely "Surprise", and I had no idea until I finally bought it that there was anything wrong! So, to honor my stupidity, that's what I've been listening to this week.
TK: I've been desperately waiting for the follow-up to Rhymefest's fantastic Blue Collar, which supposedly comes out this month. In the interim, I've been exploring his exercise in weirdness, Man In The Mirror, which is a mashup/mixtape of his stuff and his favorite Michael Jackson tracks. It's bizarre and yet strangely compelling. This one is his take on "Man In The Mirror." As a bonus, I'm also including his fake meeting with Michael ("Much Love"), because it's fucking hilarious.
It's been a weird week on the album charts, with a surprising number of non-shit-pop in the top five (Marilyn Manson at #4, Green Day at #2). Eminem managed to snag the top spot with his incredibly lame Relapse. Oh, and worry not -- the Hanna Montana soundtrack is still sitting there at #3.