Xiu Xiu Announce Biggest Xiu Xiu Tour So Far This Year

Xiu Xiu are awesome, blah blah blah. Stuff is awesome and, like, there are about, like, um, 70 elephants outside my window because – well, you know my friend Jeannie? Well she has like 15 geese in her back yard, and they all stink like that guy who used to work at the mall, who had that really bad hair and stuff.

Oh yeah, and Xiu Xiu are touring the UK soon. You know, the smelly place with the bad-teethed people and ugly old lady on all the money. Then they’re going to other places, like the United States of America. Go see them, because, like, they have a new album called Dear God, I Hate Myself, due February 23 on Kill Rock Stars. Not-so-fun fact: this is, like, Xiu Xiu’s first album since the departure of Caralee McElroy.

02.20.10 - Dublin, IE - Whelans
02.21.10 - Glasgow, UK - NiceNSleazy
02.22.10 - Edinburgh, UK - Electric Circus
02.23.10 - Manchester, UK - Islington Mill
02.24.10 - Sheffield, UK - The Harley
02.25.10 - Cardiff, UK - Cardiff Arts Institute
02.26.10 - London, UK - The Luminaire
02.27.10 - Brighton, UK - Freebutt
02.28.10 - Coventry, UK - Taylor John’s House
03.05.10 - Greensboro, NC - Guilford College
03.06.10 - Atlanta, GA - Drunken Unicorn (w/ Noveller, Girl in a Coma)
03.07.10 - Birmingham, AL - The Bottletree (w/ Noveller, Girl in a Coma)
03.09.10 - Little Rock, AR - Sticky Fingerz Chicken Shack (w/ Noveller, Girl in a Coma)
03.10.10 - Norman, OK - Opolis Productions (w/ Noveller, Girl in a Coma)
03.11.10 - Dallas, TX - The Cavern (w/ Noveller, Girl in a Coma)
03.12.10 - Houston, TX - The Studio at Warehouse Live (w/ Noveller)
03.13.10 - Austin, TX - Red 7 (w/ Noveller, Jonathan Mieberg of Shearwater)
03.16.10 - Tucson, AZ - Solar Culture (w/ Extra Life, Noveller)
03.17.10 - San Diego, CA - The Casbah (w/ Tune-Yards, Noveller)
03.18.10 - Los Angeles, CA - Echo (w/ Tune-Yards, Noveller)
03.19.10 - Santa Cruz, CA - The Crepe Place (w/ Tune-Yards, Noveller)
03.20.10 - San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill (w/ Tune-Yards, Noveller)
03.23.10 - Olympia, WA - Northern (w/ Tune-Yards)
03.24.10 - Portland, OR - Holocene (w/ Tune-Yards)
03.25.10 - Boise, ID - Neurolux (w/ Tune-Yards, Scout Niblett)
03.26.10 - Salt Lake City, UT - Urban Lounge (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
03.27.10 - Denver, CO - Hi-Dive (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
03.29.10 - Lawrence, KS - Jackpot Saloon (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
03.30.10 - St. Louis, MO - Lemp Neighborhood Arts Center (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Norma, Br’erl)
03.31.10 - Iowa City, IA - The Picador (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
04.01.10 - Northfield, MN - The Cave at Carleton College (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
04.02.10 - Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
04.03.10 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal, Zola Jesus)
04.05.10 - Oberlin, OH - The Dionysus Discotheque (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
04.07.10 - Cleveland, OH - The Spot (w/ Tune-Yards, Talk Normal)
04.08.10 - Buffalo, NY - Mohawk Place (w/ Tune-Yards)
04.09.10 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom (w/ Tune-Yards, Zola Jesus)
04.10.10 - Cambridge, MA - Middle East Downstairs (w/ Tune-Yards)
04.13.10 - Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church (w/ Tune-Yards)
04.14.10 - Washington, DC - Rock and Roll Hotel (w/ Tune-Yards)
04.15.10 - Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506 (w/ Tune-Yards)
04.17.10 - Detroit, MI - Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (w/ TBD)

jj Signs with Secretly Canadian for New Record, Goes on First U.S. Tour, Reveals the Secrets of the Mystics

In 2009, jj, creators of luxurious pop and confusion for Lil Wayne fans, kept things pretty well under wraps. No bio, no press release, not even a picture of what these people (this person?) look like. Just a couple enigmatic releases on Sincerely Yours.

But in this new decade, jj seem ready to reveal some of their secrets. Or, at least, become a little more visible in North America. For one, the group has signed with Secretly Canadian for their follow-up to 2009’s jj nº 2, the appropriately-titled jj nº 3. The new collection will see release on March 9. One can only hope that this time around there’s a song sampling “Mrs. Officer.”

jj will also show their faces in the U.S. for the first time by going on tour with The xx (capital letters are for losers) this coming Spring. Finally, we will know what these kids actually look like! Sure, a quick YouTube search could accomplish the same thing, but, c’mon. You’re no fun.

Now that the secrets of jj are to be revealed, help me with this puzzle cube. Quick, before the Druid King awakens!

jj tourdates:

03.22.10 - Baton Rouge, LA - Spanish Moon
03.23.10 - Birmingham, AL - Bottletree
03.24.10 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl
03.25.10 - Carrboro, NC - Cats Cradle
03.28.10 - Washington, DC - Sixth & I Historic Synagogue
03.29.10 - Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church Sanctuary
03.30.10 - Brooklyn, NY - Knitting Factory
03.31.10 - New York, NY - Webster Hall
04.02.10 - Boston, MA - Paradise
04.03.10 - Montreal, QC - Le National
04.04.10 - Toronto, ON - Lees Palace
04.05.10 - Columbus, OH - Wexner Center
04.06.10 - Bloomington, IN - Buskirk-Chumley Theater
04.08.10 - Chicago, IL - Lincoln Hall
04.09.10 - Minneapolis, MN - Varsity Theater
04.12.10 - Bellingham, WA - The Nightlight Lounge
04.13.10 - Vancouver, BC - Commodore Ballroom
04.14.10 - Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom
04.16.10 - San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill

all dates with The xx

OiNK Owner Found Not Guilty of Conspiracy

Alan Ellis, who ran the insanely popular BitTorrent tracker OiNK, was unanimously found not guilty of conspiracy to defraud at Teesside Crown Court. According to a post on OiNK’s website:

On 15 January 2010, Alan Ellis was unanimously declared not guilty.

If you would like to get in touch with Alan, you can do so here: contact@alanellis.co.uk.

The solicitors representing Alan Ellis in the case were Morgan Rose with Alex Stein as the barrister.

OiNK was originally shut down October 2007 in a high-profile police raid. Five of the six members were arrested for copyright infringement, with Ellis eventually charged with conspiracy to defraud in September 2008. In December of that year, four of the OiNK members plead guilty at Teesside to copyright infringement – a few of them were sentenced to 330 hours of community service and £378 in court costs, another was required to pay a £500 fine.

Interestingly, it was revealed during the seven-day trial that Ellis received $18,000 a month in donations. Not too shabby for a THIEF (wink).

Suede Reform for One-Off Benefit Show (without Bernard Butler)

According to The Quietus, Suede are reforming for a one-off gig at London’s Royal Albert Hall sometime later this year. The show will serve as a benefit to the Teenage Cancer Trust (whose patron is The Who’s Roger Daltrey). It seems fitting too: both Brett Anderson and Bernard Butler lost their parents to cancer, according to The Quietus.

Butler, however, will not be part of the reunion. The gig will instead feature Anderson with Matt Osman, Richard Oakes, Simon Gilbert, and Neil ‘Yum’ Codling, who all played on the first Butler-less LP, Coming Up (1996). Besides, Butler’s too busy chilling with The Veils, Kate Jackson, Duffy, Jonathan Jeremiah, Kate Nash, Lissy Trullie, Scott McFarnon, and Tommy Reilly anyway.

Oh, almost forgot: Oasis, Blur, Pulp.

U.S. Court Reinstates Antitrust Lawsuit against Major Labels

A U.S. judge has reinstated an antitrust suit against the major labels based on violations of The Sherman Act. The case was originally dismissed by a lower court judge in October 2008.

The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York named the defendants as “Bertelsmann AG, EMI Group, Sony Corp, Time Warner Inc, Vivendi SA, and Warner Music Group Corp or various affiliates.” In the original case, the plaintiffs said that these labels had contrived to set “artificial price floors” by entering into “joint ventures and licenses.” They also maintain that the companies agreed a minimum price of 70 cents per song, and this was to be enforced through “restrictive license agreements.”

Judge Robert Katzmann wrote that the case put forward by the plaintiffs was valid enough to point to a possible plot to fix prices. The labels control around 80% of all digital music sales in the U.S. and Judge Katzmann reckoned “some form of agreement among defendants would have been needed to render the enterprises profitable.”

Remind me: why does the RIAA get so angry about illegal downloading again?

Pavement and Broken Social Scene to Co-Headline Toronto Island Concert; Indie Minds Blown Around the World

If the Toronto Island Concert were a person, they’d probably be clad in tight pants, a snug flannel, thick-rimmed glasses, a beard, Nietzsche in their back pocket, and plenty of advice for the best ways to get around NYC’s pesky no-smoking-in-bars ban. But seriously, all rotten stereotypes aside, this is some exciting news. Press releases have been a-flowin’, chock full o’ news about the Toronto Island Concert’s latest lineup. This year, you can expect to see Toronto’s very own alt-popsters, Broken Social Scene (the atom from which all Toronto indie bands divide), PAVEMENT (girlish squeal!!), and the ever-dependable indie rockers Band of Horses.

Pavement, who are newly reunited and coming out with a greatest hits album Quarantine the Past, are including this Toronto date as part of their overarching 2010 tour. Toronto Island Concert is an all-day music event taking place on (you guessed it) Toronto Island. The music-making will commence on June 19, 2010 – and stay tuned for further lineup updates!