Konono N°1 finally release second LP, Assume Crash Position, tour, and collaborate with Herbie Hancock

Konono N°1 finally release second LP, Assume Crash Position, tour, and collaborate with Herbie Hancock http://www.tinymixtapes.com/sites/default/files/news-10-03-konono-no1.jpg

It has been about six years since Konono N°1 released their debut album, Congotronics. Since then, they have released a number of live records and have toured numerous times, but they never quite found the time to record a new record. Finally in 2010, they have finished their second full-length studio album, Assume Crash Position, which will see release June 8 on Crammed Discs. Following its release, the group will set out on a full North American tour in July. AND, on top of all this, Konono N°1 have also found time to contribute to Herbie Hancock’s new album The Imagine Project.

For more information on all things Konono N°1, look for the next issue of The Wire, which will feature an in-depth cover story on the crew. North American dates have not yet been announced, so stay tuned for a forthcoming TMT update.

• Konono N°1: http://www.myspace.com/konononr1
• Crammed Discs: http://www.crammed.be

[Photo: Pieter Hugo]

Konono N°1 finally release second LP, Assume Crash Position, tour, and collaborate with Herbie Hancock

It has been about six years since Konono N°1 released their debut album, Congotronics. Since then, they have released a number of live records and have toured numerous times, but they never quite found the time to record a new record. Finally in 2010, they have finished their second full-length studio album, Assume Crash Position, which will see release June 8 on Crammed Discs. Following its release, the group will set out on a full North American tour in July. AND, on top of all this, Konono N°1 have also found time to contribute to Herbie Hancock’s new album The Imagine Project.

For more information on all things Konono N°1, look for the next issue of The Wire, which will feature an in-depth cover story on the crew. North American dates have not yet been announced, so stay tuned for a forthcoming TMT update.

• Konono N°1: http://www.myspace.com/konononr1
• Crammed Discs: http://www.crammed.be

[Photo: Pieter Hugo]

RIP: Alex Chilton of Big Star

From Rolling Stone:

Alex Chilton, singer and guitarist of Big Star, one of the most influential rock groups to emerge from the early 1970s, has passed away at the age of 59. Chilton reportedly suffered a heart attack today in New Orleans, just days before Big Star were scheduled to perform at the SXSW Festival in Austin, Texas. Chilton had been complaining about his health earlier in the day, and was eventually taken to a New Orleans hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Big Star drummer Jody Stephens confirmed Chilton’s passing, Memphis’ Commercial Appeal reports. “Alex passed away a couple of hours ago,” Stephens said. “I don’t have a lot of particulars, but they kind of suspect that it was a heart attack.”

• Alex Chilton: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Chilton
• Big Star: http://bigstarband.com

[Photo: Philippe Brizard]

UK anti-piracy bill passed by upper chamber; bill might be rushed through to avoid scrutiny

Yesterday, March 16, the British Parliament’s Upper Chamber passed an anti-piracy bill. Known as the Digital Economy Bill, the legislation imposes a three-strikes system on online pirates with possible suspension of internet access for persistent offenders. The House of Lords (kind of like the Senate, except members get appointed rather than elected) managed to scrap an unpopular clause in the bill that would have given “government ministers wide-ranging powers to amend copyright law to deal with any future piracy threat from new technology.”

The bill will now go to the House of Commons (the actual elected bit!) for their final consideration. However, the government is considering whether to introduce a clause that “could result in Web sites with any copyright-infringing material being blocked.” This drew howls of protest from Google, Yahoo, and Facebook.

The problem for the British government is that it only has a few weeks before it will need to call a general election. During this time, Parliament is dissolved and any bills that are going through Parliament are abolished. Consequently, the government is desperate to get its Digital Economy Bill enacted before it has to call the election. This means it is considering ways of avoiding as much parliamentary (read: democratic) scrutiny as possible to get the pirate-bashing bill through. Sigh.

Michael Jackson, former Simpsons voice actor, lands $250 million recording deal

Michael Jackson, best known as the voice of Leon Kompowski on TV’s The Simpsons, has finally parlayed his limited success as a voice actor into a full-blown relationship with the American Recording Industry. According to his estate, the recently deceased Jackson also dabbled in music from time to time, recording what he himself often referred to as “hypnogogic pop” songs straight to VHS tape (VHS tape being the most hi-fi technology available at the time) in his home studio just outside of Tecumseh, Oklahoma. Luckily for Jackson and his family, this strain of hazy-sounding glo-fi pop-rock has just come into fashion, allowing the actor’s family to score an unprecedented contract with Sony Music Entertainment potentially worth up to $250 million, the biggest recording deal in history! (Not bad for a man who had to turn to brick-laying in the late 90s after a fizzled voice-over career and disastrous first marriage to Annie Wood, host of the wildly popular TV game show Bzzz!.)

The record-setting recording deal stipulates that ten projects based around Jackson’s washed-out, beach-party tracks will be released over the next seven years. The two-cassette album that accompanied his early independent film foray This Is It is the first of the ten, and various business moguls and industry insiders that I most assuredly interviewed for this story have speculated that the other nine projects may include an album of never-before-released Jackson recordings (to come out November 2010), a DVD compilation of his homemade music videos, and even a re-release of his first-ever scripted acting gig, 1979’s Off The Wall, a low-budget buddy comedy that co-starred Charles Nelson Reilly. Sony has even been granted access to Jackson’s entire back catalog, which means we could be hearing many of his soon-to-be-classic songs in movies, TV commercials, TubroGraphx-16 video games, ice-dancing routines, and more! Wow. Only in America, people. Only in America…

• Michael Jackson: http://www.michaeljackson.com

Talibam! tour Europe… maybe

The avant-jazz spazzers known as Talibam! are getting way outta control. On top of this so-called European tour I’m informing you of, the band has a whole slew of upcoming cross-continental tours and releases. So much in fact, that I’m not quite sure what is factual and what is not. Seriously, according to the band, they have somewhere around a dozen releases scheduled for production within the next few months, about four European tours, some sort of multimedia theatrical holiday event titled Talibam’s Holiday Spectacular, and a whole mish-mosh of random nuggets of randomness. According to the band:

RELEASES 2010: The Peeesseye and Talibam! collaborative album has been released on Invada records from Bristol England (CD) and on Smeraldina-Rima (2xLP with gatefold). A Talibam! 7” vinyl with 2 pumpin’ hot singles will soon be available. A Talibam! / NE TRAVAILLEZ JAMAIS split 7” vinyl will soon be available from a diy label in the south of Italy called Musica per ORgani Cald. We are also working on a multi-media holiday theatrical event entitled Talibam!’s Holiday Spectacular, a reggae album in collaberation with multi-instrumentalist Jeremy Wilms entitled “The Sanifarian Equipage”, a collaborative album with trombonist Sam Kulik entitled “Talibam! Goes To Bed With Sam Kulik And Wakes Up And Discovers Atlantis”, a collaborative album with woodwinder Jon Irabagon entitled “Talibam! Hard Vibe Trio”, a rap album entitled “Puff Up The Volume”, a collaborative record of unknown content entitled “Spermarang”, a country album, a duo album about zombie’s entitled “Corpse Riot”, a collaborative space-cake album entitled “Oops, I Took Peyote…”, and many other gems.

Yeah… so regardless of all that, here’s what I’m fairly certain is actually taking place:

The band will be touring Europe this month (March).

03.17.10 - Berne, Switzerland - Dampfzentrale w/ Shining
03.18.10 - Dornbirn, Austria - TIK
03.19.10 - Linz, Austria - Pkapu
03.20.10 - Freising, Germany - Lindenkeller w/ Attwenger
03.21.10 - Vienna, Austria - Rhiz
03.22.10 - TBA
03.24.10 - Dresden, Germany - Groove Station w/ Don Vito
03.25.10 - Poznan, Poland - Dragon
03.26.10 - Warsaw, Poland - Powiekszenie
03.27.10 - Krakow, Poland - PRE
03.28.10 - Wroclaw, Poland - OPT

• Talibam!: http://www.myspace.com/talibam

[Photo: Aurelio Laloni]