Subtle Tour, Ready New Album + Graphic Novel, Make Funny Pictures, and Generally Do Not Live Up to Their Name

Attention all other musical acts: Independent hip-hop innovators Subtle are about to make you look like a bunch of lazy slobs, based on the fact that they will be dropping the following items on us, much to our delight. Ahem:

1. A new album! Ah-doy. ExitingARM comes out May 13 on Lex Records, promising to be the most accessible Subtle record yet. Yeah, that's what they all say. Except they seem pretty serious about all of this, so I wouldn't fuck with them. Subtle specialize in making music that's equal parts beautiful and credible, IMHO, so let's get our hopes up, shall we?
2. An online graphic novel. In case you haven't noticed, the graphic novel has total status these days, so feel free to correct anyone who jabs you for reading online comics. They're graphic novels, GOD! The Ought Almanac of Amassed Fact Vol. I accompanies the new album, and you can read it here.
3. A possible show on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim, featuring the collaborations of Subtle frontman Doseone and animator Ghostshrimp, with Doseone lending his vocal chops. Doseone also animates "NOTgarfield" with the help of bandmate Jeffrey “Jel”” Logan - check it.
4. A tour is a tour, of cour ... that didn't work at all:

Subtle Tour, Ready New Album + Graphic Novel, Make Funny Pictures, and Generally Do Not Live Up to Their Name

Attention all other musical acts: Independent hip-hop innovators Subtle are about to make you look like a bunch of lazy slobs, based on the fact that they will be dropping the following items on us, much to our delight. Ahem:

1. A new album! Ah-doy. ExitingARM comes out May 13 on Lex Records, promising to be the most accessible Subtle record yet. Yeah, that's what they all say. Except they seem pretty serious about all of this, so I wouldn't fuck with them. Subtle specialize in making music that's equal parts beautiful and credible, IMHO, so let's get our hopes up, shall we?
2. An online graphic novel. In case you haven't noticed, the graphic novel has total status these days, so feel free to correct anyone who jabs you for reading online comics. They're graphic novels, GOD! The Ought Almanac of Amassed Fact Vol. I accompanies the new album, and you can read it here.
3. A possible show on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim, featuring the collaborations of Subtle frontman Doseone and animator Ghostshrimp, with Doseone lending his vocal chops. Doseone also animates "NOTgarfield" with the help of bandmate Jeffrey “Jel”” Logan - check it.
4. A tour is a tour, of cour ... that didn't work at all:

RIAA Sues Homeless Man For Cardboard Boxes, Can of Beans, Cool Stick Thing With Tied Polka Dot Kerchief on It

Seriously. In Warren v. Berry, the RIAA recently sued a homeless man. Rumor has it they were in it for the shopping cart.


The Hold Steady to Hold Steady on Plans of Global Domination, License Album to Rough Trade

"Gonna walk around and drink some more" might be a fine credo for the generally drug-addled laze-abouts that populate the scraggly yarns spun by Brooklyn-via-Minneapolis singer and Hold Steady frontman Craig Finn, but the trajectories of the real-life Finn and his chops-laden, avant-bar band members are looking infinitely more purposeful than that these days.

Well, okay... they're probably still going to do a lot of drinking, but at least they'll be doing a lot more traveling while they do (let's hope that someone else is driving, huh?).

Case in point, the famously thirsty band has recently signed a deal that will have their new album released through the legendary Rough Trade label in the UK and Europe, with the distribution rights being licensed from the boys' home team of Vagrant Records.

In a much more coherent statement than one might expect, Finn stated that the band is "really excited to begin this relationship with Rough Trade" for their fourth album, which of course will constitute the follow-up to 2006's breakthrough slice of Springsteen-on-Kerouac pie known as Boys and Girls in America (TMT Review). "From The Smiths to The Strokes, they have consistently released music from great artists and we are honoured to be a part of the roster. Rough Trade records have been part of my own collection since I started buying my own records in the early 1980s."

Hey, way to date yourself there, Craig.

Oh, and speaking of dates (seamless!), the band will also be doing a few victory laps around their new territory this spring. Catch them if you can, and maybe you can by them a drink to walk around with... or I guess "fly" around with, since they're big-time now.
05.11.08 - Camber Sands, UK - ATP
05.13.08 - Dublin, IE - Academy
05.14.08 - Belfast, UK - Spring and Airbrake
05.16.08 - Brighton, UK - Great Escape

Rampant Styx‘n’Violets: Universal Music Group Implements Earth-Friendly Reissues (Happy Earth Day!)

In its latest effort to appear more "hip," "relevant," and "not like the Devil," Universal Music Group is reissuing a set of titles that will be exclusively packaged in recycled paperboard. These hippified titles will only be available at Wal-Mart, as the venture is being carried out in honor of the chain's "Earth Month." You thought your eyebrows couldn't possibly be raised any higher? Well, allow me to prove you wrong. The insert included in each CD will, when planted in the ground correctly, sprout wildflowers. Hopefully, the Happy Tree Friends will also appear to complete the circle of ridiculousness.

The albums receiving the green thumb treatment are mostly greatest hits compilations, which is an interesting roster in itself, prompting one to ask questions such as: "K-Ci & JoJo really had enough chart-toppers to warrant a ‘greatest hits’ album?" or "Would KISS really want their album insert to sprout dandelions?"

Let's get gardening!:

Bryan Adams - THE BEST OF ME

Bon Jovi - CROSS ROAD: GREATEST HITS

Boyz II Men - LEGACY: THE GREATEST HITS COLLECTION

James Brown - 20 ALL-TIME GREATEST HITS!

Jimmy Buffett - SONGS YOU KNOW BY HEART

Eric Clapton - CREAM OF CLAPTON

Patsy Cline - DEFINITIVE COLLECTION

Sheryl Crow - VERY BEST OF SHERYL CROW

Def Leppard - VAULT GREATEST HITS

Eagles - HELL FREEZES OVER

Melissa Etheridge - GREATEST HITS: THE ROAD LESS TRAVELED

Marvin Gaye - EVERY GREAT MOTOWN HIT

Vince Gill - SOUVENIRS

Jimi Hendrix - EXPERIENCE HENDRIX

K-Ci & JoJo - ALL MY LIFE: GREATEST HITS

Toby Keith - GREATEST HITS

KISS - VERY BEST OF KISS

Lynyrd Skynyrd - ALL-TIME GREATEST HITS

Van Morrison - STILL ON TOP

Willie Nelson - SONGS

New Found Glory - HITS

Nirvana - NIRVANA

Lionel Richie - DEFINITIVE COLLECTION

Rush - THE SPIRIT OF RADIO

Scorpions - BAD FOR GOOD: BEST OF SCORPIONS

Soundgarden - A-SIDES

Steely Dan - DEFINITIVE COLLECTION

Styx - GREATEST HITS

UMG, OMG!! The Major Music Group Enters Brave New World of Online Social Media Sites

Forget Facebook. Forget MySpace. Forget Friendster. (What, you've already forgotten Friendster???) I'm not telling you this because I want you to ignore the drunken messages I sent you last night. I'm telling you because your favorite major music conglomerate Universal Music Group has teamed up with Buzznet to bring you the most amazing, most exciting, most music-y new online social media content EVER.

Now, word on the street (or Billboard magazine, whatever you wanna hear) is that Buzznet has been kickin' it with a slew of new investors and partners. But, if you're like me, the only one you will really care about is this budding relationship with Universal. It's like this: Buzznet gets to use UMG's catalog for some streaming music and video action, as well as editorial content from Universal-signed artists cum guest bloggers. (Holy shit, right? Imagine the insights and life wisdom that Beck and Chamillionaire will be able to drop!) In return, UMG gets an equity stake in the company and the opportunity to disseminate the Pussycat Dolls' views on Iraq.