It is the future. Our scene opens with King Bono Vox I undressing in his palatial bedroom. As he takes off his shirt, we cannot help but be drawn to the trio of Nobel Peace Prizes nestled on a buff chest with “not too much, just enough” hair, hovering equidistant from each other above two perfectly symmetrical nipples, not unlike an Olympic Games logo designed by a sporty Mapplethorpe. Time has been good to Bono, mostly due to the functioning fountain of youth given to him by a grateful lost tribe, partly due to his two daily Bowflex circuits. He lowers his creaseless body into a bath drawn by his manservant Crone.

Bono: “Do you have the children's tears collected, Crone?”

Crone: “Yeah, the children's tears are sitting in that bucket beside your tub. But I don't see...”

Bono: “You don't see? You don't See? You don't have to see! Are you Bono? Are you? The last time I checked, there be only one Bono in this here room, and you ain't it, mate. The children's tears remind me of the suffering, the injustice, at the hands of evil oppressors back in the 20th century... before I cured all of the world’s ills in 2008. Plus they work wonders for the epidermis. I don't expect you to see. Inferior rogue!”

Crone: “Yes sir. I have also laid out your silk gitch. It's dangling over the crapper there.”

Bono (using his 20-10 vision to spot the undercarriage caressors, as they are known in the distant future of 2017): “Those are not rebel underwear...those are fundies, bloody fundies! Be gone Crone, and bullet the blue sky where the streets have no name on your way out.”

End scene.

...

Ah yes, it is all too easy to take a run at the most popular singer in the world, but dude talks the talk. His position as the front piece of (arguably) the world's biggest band is juxtaposed with his tireless campaigning for diverse social causes while acting like a self-professed “real pain in the arse” to U.S. officials. Chief among Bono's political passions throughout the years has been fighting against the problems plaguing Africa: the AIDS epidemic (in the past he has likened the troubling issue to The Holocaust) and the continent's crippling debt. His needling of governments and musical oeuvre are being recognized by a number of African artists including Tony Allen, Angelique Kidjo, Les Nubians, and Vieux Farka Touré who provide interpretations of many U2 favorites on In the Name of Love: Africa Celebrates U2, due April 1 on Shout! Factory.

In the Name of Love: Africa Celebrates U2 will give greater attention to artists who are little known outside certain "world music" spheres and will challenge U2 deriders like myself to find merit in U2's songs without having to listen to The Edge's chunka-clunka-chunka-clunka guitar ruining the proceedings (every single time). Best of all, some proceeds of the album will go to The Global Fund and will prove once again that Bono is the greatest human being alive.

Again. On Valentine's Day in New York, a charitable art auction to benefit AIDS relief put on by Bono and British contemporary artist Damien Hirst raised $42 million. Hirst himself donated seven pieces of art to the auction (including a cabinet full of AIDS treatment drugs which sold for $7.15 million) and 17 artists broke personal auction records at the event, including graffito artist Banksy, whose “Keep It Spotless” made $1.8 million. Said Hirst, “I'm never going to be cynical ever again for a while. We've helped change the world a little bit.” Aye, you have Mr. Hirst. All because of a meme named Bono.

In the Name of Love: Africa Celebrates U2:

1. Angelique Kidjo - "Mysterious Ways"
2. Vieux Farka Touré - "Bullet the Blue Sky"
3. Ba Cissoko - "Sunday Bloody Sunday"
4. Vusi Mahlasela - "Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own"
5. Tony Allen - "Where the Streets Have No Name"
6. Cheikh Lô - "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For"
7. Keziah Jones - "One"
8. Les Nubians - "With Or Without You"
9. Soweto Gospel Choir - "Pride (In The Name Of Love)"
10. Sierra Leone's Refugee All Stars - "Seconds"
11. African Underground All-Stars featuring Chosan, Optimus & Iyoka - "Desire"
12. Waldemar Bastos - "Love Is Blindness"

Study on Jazz Proves Improvisation Indicates That Brain Engaged in High Creative Thought, No One to Be Surprised

Wow, wow, wow, reader! Apparently, scientists just discovered that when jazz musicians engage in improvisation, their brain is engaged in like-totally-totally creative thought. Deep, and shit.

Imagine. It’s like modern science is confirming, um, everything we probably assumed without modern science, or something.

Seriously, though. Read up.

Scout Leader Kyle Exclusive: Hot Chip is Touring©

According to the headline above, this is NOT a Tiny Mix Tapes exclusive. This is a Scout Leader Kyle exclusive, because Mr P is too big of a tight-ass to pay me for the rights to this story, so now he is required by law to post it with a disclaimer that you're required to read before viewing the actual news story.

DISCLAIMER: All information provided by Scout Leader Kyle is provided for information purposes only. This news story is subject to change without prior notice. Although every reasonable effort is made to present current and accurate information, Scout Leader Kyle makes no guarantees of any kind. If you need to contact Scout Leader Kyle, please refrain from doing so, because his schedule is perpetually full. All text, graphics, user interfaces, visual interfaces, photographs, trademarks, logos, sounds, music, artwork, and computer code (collectively, “Content”), including but not limited to the design, structure, selection, coordination, expression, “look and feel,” and arrangement of such Content contained in this news story is owned, controlled, or licensed by or to Scout Leader Kyle, and is protected by trade dress, copyright, patent, and trademark laws, and various other intellectual property rights and unfair competition laws.

SCOUT LEADER KYLE DOES NOT PROMISE THAT THIS NEWS STORY WILL BE ERROR-FREE OR UNINTERRUPTED OR THAT ANY DEFECTS WILL BE CORRECTED UNLESS THAT BITCH-ASS, MR P FIXES THEM OR THAT YOUR USE OF THIS NEWS STORY WILL PROVIDE SPECIFIC RESULTS. THE NEWS STORY AND ITS TOURDATES ARE DELIVERED ON AN “AS-IS” AND “AS-AVAILABLE” BASIS.

If you have read and understood the disclaimer, then you may read the news story by highlighting the following white space (which will review the text):

The gentlemen from Hot Chip just released their third stellar studio album, Made in the Dark in Febuary, and now they're touring to earn themselves some cash. If you feel like dancing to their magical electronic punk sounds, then get your ass to these shows!

* Free Blood

# DJ Set

Art Brut Amicably Splits with EMI

According to a not-so-humorous post by Barnaby Fudge on the band's website, Art Brut and EMI will no longer be working with each other:

Dearest Internet, it looks like our much loved adventurers just couldn't work it out with EMI after all. That's right, after staying up well into the night talking it over, they have both decided it best if they see other people. The spark just wasn't there anymore. The reasons, you ask? There were many. Maybe the age difference, maybe the mounting work committments [sic]. It just looks as if they both needed some space. And hey, maybe they both need to play the field a little more before settling down. They promise to remain close friends and lunch whenever they can. Good luck to all involved!

Kind of reads like Art Brut got DROPPED like a buttered basketball. But if anything, you can now properly call Art Brut an indie band again, since I know you were dying to. And me? Well, I think I'll be okay (don't click if you're at work!).

Remaining dates:

Pitchfork Music Festival 2008 Initial Lineup Announced; Hangin’ Out with Ryan Schreiber

The initial lineup for Pitchfork Music Festival 2008, the "annual rite of indie passage" as they cheekily refer to it, was announced yesterday afternoon. Blogs, message boards, and online magazines lit up brighter than a Christmas quasar, but instead of simply regurgitating the Pitchfork "news story" for Tiny Mix Tapes, I wanted to interview Ryan Schreiber again (like last year) for round 2 in "Mango Starr Interviews The Pitchfork Bossman." We met at the same coffee shop, but this time Ryan insisted he wear a red hat (instead of blue) to "make things interesting."

...

Hi, I'm Mango Starr. Staff reporter for online music magazine, Tiny Mix Tapes. Remember me?

Sure, how's it going, bud?

I'm well... Actually, I'm a little nervous, so bear with me...

Nervous about what, Mango?

Haha, oh, um... I don't know, haha. I actually haven't done an in-person interview since the last we talked, so I'm a bit rusty.

Haha, weird. Doesn't Mr P gather enough content for you to cover?

Fuck no. Mr P basically scans Pitchfork all day to see what he needs to cover on Tiny Mix Tapes. Haha!

Oh, I see. No worries -- it's all good. What's up, buddy?

I see that a band called Public Enemy are performing a full album on the first day.

Yep, I'm really excited about it. I love that album.

I guess that's one of the perks of being editor-in-chief of Pitchfork!

What do you mean?

Oh, well, I'm just saying you're lucky you get to hear albums even before they're released. I'm more of a newswriter/features type of guy, so I don't get promos. I'll probably buy it when it's released though.

Well, actually, Mango... It Takes a Nation came out roughly 20 years ago. You've never heard of Public Enemy?

Oh, um.... I've heard OF them I suppose. Never actually heard, you know? So I haven't kept up with them I guess. Haha, oh man... I didn't really have time to do research before this interview since the fest news was just announced on your site, and...

That's quite alright, Mango.

Yeah?

Yeah, buddy.

Uh, thanks... Should we start over?

Well, honestly, I'm a bit short on time today. Would you be interested in hanging out at all tomorrow?

Oh well, actually, Mr P wanted the story handed in tonight...

Oh, well, I just mean to hang out, grab a bite to eat, you know. Just chill. Listen to some tunes... HEY! I could show you that Public Enemy album if you want!

You seriously want to hang with me?

Yeah, why not?

Shit man, that's awesome! No, no, I'm totally down for hanging out!

Let's do it, man! Let's hang the fuck out!

Hell yeah! We'll totally just chill out and fucking HANG.

We'll just fuckin' hang 10 like surfers. We'll hang like kids on some fuckin' monkey bars, man.

Like the clothes in your closet: We'll be HANGING!

Definitely, man! Haha! Stick a fork in me, I'm hanging with Mango Starr tomorrow!

...

Pitchfork Music Festival 2008 runs from July 18-20 at Chicago's Union Park. Tickets go on sale Wednesday, March 12 here. Definitely get in touch with me if you want to hang out at the fest.

Initial festival lineup:

- Day 1: Friday, July 18:

Pitchfork Music Festival and All Tomorrow's Parties present Public Enemy performing It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back - More TBA

- Day 2: Saturday, July 19:

Animal Collective - !!! - Vampire Weekend - Dizzee Rascal - No Age - Atlas Sound - Fleet Foxes - More TBA

- Day 3: Sunday, July 20:

Spiritualized - M. Ward - Boris - Extra Golden - El Guincho - More TBA

Atlas Sound’s New LP Comes with Bonus Disc for UK Release, Tours with Animal Collective

Atlas Sound, the amazing project by Bradford Cox, is getting a lot of attention, and I couldn't be happier. His debut solo album, Let The Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel (TMT Review), has been available from Kranky for awhile now, but now word has it that 4AD will be releasing the album in the UK, May 5, and it will include a bonus disc of unreleased material! Which means now you gotta shell out more money for that second disc, but you know what? It's okay, because, as your financial adviser, I can tell you that you're doing just fine financially.

In other exciting news, Atlas Sound will be supporting Animal Collective -- who are releasing the Water Curses EP May 6 on Domino -- for a string of dates on their upcoming tour. It won't happen until May though, so if you MUST see Atlas Sound now, you'll want to head out to Los Angeles to catch them (he's touring with other people, you know) at The Echo tomorrow (Tuesday). And if you don't already live in Los Angeles, all you have to do is book a flight and hotel room for tonight, which will of course require more money. But you know what? It's okay, because, as your financial adviser, I can tell you that you're doing just fine financially.

Fuck it, since we're on the topic, here are other investment ideas during this possible recession:

- high-grade corporate bonds
- money market mutual funds
- gold and silver

Animal Collective tourdates, where ### indicates shows with Atlas Sound:

* Kria Brekkan

The Constantines Tour, Play New York Twice to Appease Me (Obviously)

I got in a fight with my best friend last week, and I blame it all on The Constantines, because our romantic date to see them on March 3 was thrown straight to the dogs, care of a badly-spelled email from Ticketmaster. What kind of two-bit outfit cancels a show because their guitarist breaks a bone in his hand? Hacks. Honestly. I will not go to both New York dates (one rescheduled from March 3), not even to hear them play songs from their new album Kensington Heights (out now on Arts&Crafts), which, though it pains me to admit, is actually pretty fucking good. Instead, I will figure out where Hannah Montana is playing both nights and fly there. That'll show ‘em!

The nerve:

# Canvas Media/Onion AV Club/Arts&Crafts/Saddle Creek Day Party

Austin, Live Music Capital Of The World And Loving Every SXSW Penny Of It

- Roundtrip plane ticket to Austin, TX: $350
- Entry to several dozen venues to see more live music than your brain can feasibly enjoy in the span of 120 hours: $$
- Sleeping eight to a room and balling your joyful eyes out because you've just been picked up by a major label: Priceless

Now, multiply that by the approximately 125,000 people who attend SXSW every year, and you create a market that does have a price -- nearly $95 million, an amount that the local Austin economy has come to depend on as an enormously lucrative annual event unparalleled by any other American music festival.

Hailed as an indispensable event to the music, film, and technology industries, SXSW attracts tens of thousands of rockers and industry movers ‘n’ shakers to the city every year, and while more than 1,700 bands are expected to perform (and spend) at this year's festival, the real money is being laid down by the talent snipers and working professionals there to snatch ‘em up.

Attempting to track the economic behavior among the wide range of festival attendees, economist John Rees says "SXSW is targeting both an affluent demographic and people with expense accounts. You may have a band sleeping eight to a room, but you may have an executive spending 20 times the amount over the course of the festival that that band is spending."

According to the Austin Business Journal, roughly $18 million is contributed to the permanent staff and operational expenses of SXSW, $77 million in various spending to the local economy by attendees during their brief stay, $18 million to food and drink establishments, $13 million in media coverage, $12 million in hotel expenditures, and $7 million in the transportation sector, amounting to approximately $95 million, both directly and indirectly filtered into the local Austin economy by SXSW attendees annually. Last year, that figure was conservatively estimated at $110 million.

Well, hot damn. If money makes the world go round, Austin is the axis.

Hardly Art Signs The Pica Beats, Seeing ‘Pica’ In Their Name Reminds Me of Something…

Of course, some of you nasties out there may think that pica reminds me of the eating disorder by the same name, where people dig eating things like shit and chalk, but you're oh so wrong. No, ‘Pica’ totally reminds me of the following piece of art that I just created:

Yep! I know for a fact that The Pica Beats would've been much better off naming their group The Pichu Beats, but hey, whatever -- the music matters more than the band name right? Wrong! The name is everything. Seriously, the Pica Beats is nothing compared to The Pichu Beats -- what were they thinking? I bet they'll toss and turn in their beds at night, wishing they had replaced that vowel with a dope-ass consonant and an even BETTER vowel (work with me here).

So, yeah, I'm still pissed off, but if you haven't heard any of the awesome pop music these folks are churning out, then you should visit their MySpace. Don't own a computer? Can't read this current news story? Don't fret: the five-piece group will release Beating Back the Claws of the Cold on Hardly Art later this year.

I recommend protesting their name at these lonely Seattle shows:
03.22.08 - Seattle, WA - Triple Door *
03.29.08 - Seattle, WA - TBA #
04.01.08 - Seattle, WA - Chop Suey ^

* The Blow

# Hollow Earth Radio's Magma Festival

^ Le Loup, The Ruby Suns

Hair Police Cancel Tour Due to Car Accident

After we excitedly (and weirdly) reported on Hair Police's first stateside tour in almost two years, the band has unfortunately announced its cancellation. Aside from the Ann Arbor show this Saturday (March 15), the remaining tourdates have been quashed after the band "ran into some insane blizzard conditions south of Columbus, Ohio on I-71 and totaled [their rental] car after a run in with a tractor trailer," according to band member Robert Beatty.

Luckily, Hair Police left the scene unharmed, with only minor damage to music equipment. And since they had time to kill when stranded in a Ohio hotel, they even recorded "a completely desperate, warped, and sparse session," which will eventually be released under the entirely appropriate title, Totaled and Stranded. Meanwhile, their tour-only merchandise will now be made available at Troubleman Unlimited's store in the coming weeks.

And just so you're updated with all things related to Hair Police: Troubleman Unlimited will release their newish album, The Empty Quarter, on vinyl soon; a newer, as-yet untitled album will be released on No Fun Productions later this year; and Tone Filth will be releasing Robert Beatty's Living Order/Mourning Order (under the name Three Legged Race) sometime this spring. You should buy ‘em all.

Canceled dates + remaining show:

  

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