Small Tour, Big/Family; Akron/Family on Tour

Akron/Family, as a holiday gift to you, have just curated a small (albeit effective) tour, braving some of the coldest parts of the country in winter, in an effort to warm your heart (dawww). The tour is split across the month, presumably so the/Family can spend time with their real/ones, starting out in Chicago and finishing up with a grand New Year's Eve performance at New York's Knitting Factory. No support announced as of yet, so go see about/them here for the updates.

The/collective has also been in the studio this fall working on a follow-up to last year's excellent Love is Simple (TMT Review), so hopefully, they're gonna bring us a first/glimpse at what they've been doing on their Christmas Vacation.

Ticketmaster Stays True to Its Promise: Subsidiary Begins Cuts

While our wallets are being impacted by the economy right now, personal luxuries are being put on the shelf, like concert tickets. Now the people selling those tickets are getting screwed over too. Last Friday, TicketsNow, which is owned by Ticketmaster, announced that it's laying off 62 customer service reps in its Crystal Lake office, roughly 70% of the call center work force.

Ticketmaster announced earlier this year its plans to layoff around 600 people, roughly 5% of its workforce, aiming to reduce its operating expenses to $35 million. So, look for plenty more layoff announcements.

So, what does this mean to all of us? Basically it is just going to take even longer to get through the phone lines when tickets for JT's next tour go on sale. But don't worry, we'll still get ripped off on service charges.

Upcoming Killers Tour Sucks Hapless TMT Writer Into Large Tub of Nostalgic Schmaltz

Yes, we are really writing about The Killers. I mean, I was confused too – TMT doesn’t cover Fall Out Boy tours or tell our readership much about Coldplay’s activities. But when the story popped up, I couldn’t resist. Why? I must confide in you that I harbor a secret -- a dark secret, one that I have shared with only my most trusted friends. It is a delicate situation; treat this with care.


Brandon Flowers, he who is sort of Mormon and definitely attractive to 14-year-old me, seemed to defy the logic of my “no-eyeliner-on-guys” rule. When I saw them live, it was everything I wanted and more. I screamed along to every song and thought Brandon Flowers’ stage antics (rolling around on the floor, balancing precariously on the stage’s edge) were a manifestation of his intense connection with and commitment to his music (I figured out halfway through high school that everyone occupying the stage had simply been very drunk). All in all, it was actually a pretty good show. Manufactured pop music often translates well to a large live setting.

And so I say unto you, esteemed TMT reader: if you like The Killers and have (or, if you are brave, have not) been hiding it all this time, let the world know who you are! Go to one of these shows and suspend your disbelief! Carry on the torch of pride through the masses of hipsters shunning you for liking something on the radio! Go out there and make me proud, dammit!

They’re taking control!

Extra! Extra! Read All About It! Magazine Peel Off Sessions Compilation

Four years after his death, the reanimated corpse of legendary British DJ John Peel has apparently unearthed himself to haunt the studios of the BBC and EMI in a stubborn attempt to continue issuing his Sessions to a still-living public. What else could explain the unceasing outflux of Peel Session albums? Very bad taste aside, we all hope that the wonderful tradition of releasing Peel's classic sessions will continue until time eternal. A new Peel Sessions collection will appear November 25 through EMI and will spotlight the founding Buzzcock, Howard Devoto-led, post-punk artys Magazine. Magazine: The Complete John Peel Sessions features 15 tracks taken from four different John Peel sessions recorded between February 1978 and January 1980, including a couple of interesting covers: Captain Beefheart's "I Love You, You Big Dummy" and Sly and the Family Stone's "Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin)."

Read on:

1. Touch and Go #
2. The Lights Pour Out of Me #
3. Real Life (Definitive Gave) #
4. My Mind Ain't So Open #
5. Give Me Everything $
6. Burst $
7. I Love You, You Big Dummy $
8. Boredom $
9. TV Baby %
10. Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) %
11. Permafrost %
12. A Song from Under the Floorboards ^
13. Twenty Years Ago ^
14. Look What Fear's Done to My body (AKA I Love You Because You're Frightened) ^
15. Model Worker ^

# 02.14.78 session

$ 07.24.78 session

% 05.08.79 session

^ 01.07.80 session

This is the latest release from Magazine, who have been hogging attention lately, especially since the remastered re-release of their four albums -- Real Life, Secondhand Daylight, The Correct Use of Soap, and Magic, Murder and the Weather -- in 2007. After leaving seminal pop-punk legends Buzzcocks in 1977, Devoto formed Magazine with guitarist John McGeoch in Manchester. An early lineup of the band will reunite to play a number of UK dates in February 2009. Taking part will be the classic setup of bassist Barry Adamson, drummer John Doyle, keyboardist Dave Formula, Devoto, plus a yet-to-be-determined guitarist taking the place of the deceased McGeoch. Support for these shows will come from up-and-coming dark-hearted ladies Ipso Facto.
02.12.09 - London, England - The Forum
02.13.09 - London, England - The Forum
02.14.09 - Manchester, England - Academy 1
02.16.09 - Glasgow, Scotland - Carling Academy
02.17.09 - Manchester, England - Academy 1

In his lifetime, Frank Zappa recorded approximately 12 million albums. I have listened to nine of them. Die-hard Zappamaniacs have listened to about 100 of them. I accept that I will never fully understand Zappa due to the sheer breadth of the man’s material. Zappa “experts” do not. Being an expert on Zappa is nigh on impossible; his studio albums alone could serve as the mortar for a new Tower of Babel. (Imagine that if you will: A thousand greasy Zappaites climbing to heaven so God can sign all their copies of Shiek Yerbouti. Yikes!) Yet, I have met far too many rubes who claim they “get” Zappa because they’ve listened to a third of his recorded output and know exactly what he was “trying to say,” despite remaining ignorant to the months worth of unreleased live material and studio recordings that are just sitting in Zappa’s storage unit on the moon or in Captain Beefheart’s fallout shelter.

Well, I’m not sure about any “moon unit” releases just yet (hey-oh!), but the Zappa Family Trust has announced plans to release a series of expanded editions of Zappa’s early albums, starting November 25 with his strictly orchestral solo debut Lumpy Gravy and classic hippy send-up We’re Only In It For the Money. According to Billboard, this initial combo will be titled Lumpy Money, and along with brand new mixes of both albums, it will include a never-before-heard Stravinksy-esque “ballet” recording of Lumpy Gravy. “You're going to be listening to how Frank worked, all the little developments of these pieces as opposed to just an outtake or another performance of that particular piece. You're going to hear how he got there from here," said Frank’s widow Gail Zappa.

Subsequent releases will receive individual treatments as opposed to the twofer presented here. 1968’s Cruising with Ruben and Jets is already slated for the deluxe treatment thanks to extensive plundering through the Sequin Mines vault located underneath the Zappa’s house. Other releases include live recording from the Roxy in Los Angeles and a collection of Edgar Varèse compositions performed by the fu-manchued man himself. So, Zappa freaks, looks you got some more studying to do. Hopefully these new releases don’t throw a wrench in all your doctoral theses about how “Camarillo Brillo” should become the new national anthem. Or maybe you’ll at least snap back into reality and actually have fun listening to a Frank Zappa album instead of behaving like a pompous crybaby when somebody doesn’t say the full title of “Bobby Brown Goes Down.” But probably not.

UPDATE: Ted Leo Cancels Tour with Pharmacists, Solo Shows Still On

Just a few hours ago, we posted Ted Leo's new solo dates and reminded you about the ongoing tour with his Pharmacists. Well, turns out the dates with the Pharmacists are now canceled "due to a personal emergency," according to a post from earlier today on his website (thanks to all the readers who wrote in to let us know!). Ted Leo's solo dates, however, are still on.

TMT wishes Ted Leo the best in whatever emergency he's dealing with.

Ted Leo solo shows:

# Against Me!

@ Titus Andronicus

For The Buzzcocks Fan Who Has Everything… Well, Now You Don’t; Fancy Reissues and Entire Album Performances on the Way!

Are you one of those people who gives a resounding "Yes!" to the question "Do you want fries with that?" When you notice the 30-cent difference between the large size soda and the Big Gulp size soda at the gas station, do you put down the large and grab the Big Gulp? Do you ever look at your carefully cultivated collection of albums and think, "Gee, I wish someone would reissue this with tons of bonus features and previously unreleased tracks so that I almost regret buying it all those years ago when it didn't come with several alternate takes of the same song!"? If so, then this is the story for you!

Maybe they can't bring you 32 fluid ounces of Mountain Dew, but the new Buzzcocks reissues from EMI can certainly help with your obsessively completist album collection. The seminal Manchester punk group's first three albums, 1978's Another Music in a Different Kitchen, 1978's Love Bites, and 1979's A Different Kind of Tension, will all be subject to a very special UK re-release set for release today, October 27. That means more demos, more live versions, and more discs! That's right -- these are two-disc reissues, chock-a-block with backing tracks, single versions, and Peel Sessions.

But the good news doesn't end there! Not only can you relive the late 1970s via stereo (if only someone would reissue Quaaludes, am I right??), but you can also hear those first two albums performed live and in their entirety during the January "Another Bites Tour" in the UK. Hell, even guitarist/vocalist Steve Diggle is doing one -- yes, ONE -- show this coming November.

Steve Diggle:
11.28.08 - Harlow, England - The Square


Prescription Refill: Ted Leo Tours with and without His Pharmacists

As previously reported (TMT News), the indie rock madman that is Ted Leo has been on the road with his Pharmacists and fellow tourmates Against Me! and Titus Andronicus for the past month or so, and it'll continue until next week. What we didn't tell you (because it's new news) is that Ted Leo, former Chisel (if you haven't heard them, check out Set You Free) singer, has just scheduled a short stint of solo performances in late November and December along the Midwest and East Coast.

If you can't make any dates on the tour (or even if you can) take a listen to the Rapid Response EP released last month by Touch and Go. The album is four songs for $4, and proceeds benefit the Democracy Now organization. But if you can make it to any of these shows... well, you know what to do.

Ted Leo Tour:

I Bet It Would Be a Really Funny Joke to Walk into the Living Room with a Backpack and Hiking Boots on and Tell Your Friends That You’re Going to See ‘Wilderness’ While Making a Really Grand Swooping Gesture with Your Right Arm Like You Mean to Take in All of Nature, Then You Get in Your Car and Drive to One of the Upcoming Wilderness Shows

I'd even wager to bet that it'd be so funny that you should try to meet up with the band after the show and tell them to get a load of the priceless gag you pulled on your buds while they sat around on the couch and played Rock Band. Then thank me when my sweet joke scores you a roadie position with Wilderness. And watch as the joke comes full circle and you really do absorb the beauty of nature while gazing out the window of their big rig -- your new home.

Wilderness are touring in support of their new album (k)no(w)here which Jagjaguwar is releasing November 4, and the tour kicks off November 19 at the Cake Shop in New York. So start practicing for your big stunt, because I can guarantee you, brother; this one is too funny to get through without cracking up. And you just might end up going (so)me(w)here!

(k)no(w)here Tracklist:

* San Serac

# Tammar

% Thanks Brandon!

Method Man and Redman Head Out on Tour, Plan New Album, Frolic in Field While Holding Hands and Smoking Blunts

If last year’s Kanye vs. 50 Cent media slapfight taught us anything, it’s the good ol’ fashioned hip hop feud is dead. Rather than fire rhymes and dope beats, the bullets in this weak-as-an-anesthetized-box-turtle battle were catty remarks about record sales that Rolling Stone perplexingly saw fit to grace with a cover. Did LL Cool J vs. Kool Moe Dee ever make the cover of Rolling Stone? Fuck no! And that shit spawned “Mama Said Knock You Out”!

Well if hip-hop feuds are dead, thank the gods for Method Man and Redman, the pioneers of what should be rap’s latest trend: hip-hop friendship. Method and Red have been straight up pals for years, documenting their antics on wax with 1999’s Blackout!, on the big screen with the American classic How High, and on the small screen with their unfortunately short-lived sitcom Method and Red and even shorter-lived prank show Stung. But through all their many projects both together and solo, the two have stayed true to two unshakeable principles: to get high as hell every day and stay great motherfucking friends. Maybe the rest of the hip-hop community could learn a lesson from these two good buds who enjoy good bud, always together, always friends.

So get out of the house immediately, America, and catch Method and Red on their Still High tour. If you can’t make it to one of the shows, the dudes understand, but they’d appreciate it if you could pick up their latest record, Blackout 2, when it drops in December. Do it for yourself, but mostly, do it for your old friends, Method and Red. They both love you very much.