Natasha Khan, aka Bats for Lashes, is following up her debut Fur and Gold with Two Suns, to be released April 6. Even though Khan laid down most of the instrumentation for each track all by her lonesome, guests Scott Walker, Yeasayer, and her own band The Blue Dreams appear on several tracks.

Expect comparisons to Animal Collective for all present primal and tribal rhythms, and also expect comparisons to Björk since Khan is a woman with a wondrous voice. True fans can expect something mind blowingly reminiscent of Oingo Bongo, and we should all expect an announcement of an upcoming U.S. tour.

All this exciting information makes me want to EXPLODE!!!

Two Suns tracklist:

1. Glass
2. Sleep Alone
3. Moon and Moon
4. Daniel
5. Peace of Mind
6. Siren Song
7. Pearl's Dream
8. Good Love
9. Two Planets
10. Traveling Woman
11. The Big Sleep

Foot Village Want You To Contribute to Their Next LP, Want You to Pose Nude, Want You to See Them Perform Live, And Want You to Download an FV-Related Project for Free

Four things Foot Village want you to do:

1. RECORD MUSIC

Foot Village are recording a new album, Anti-Magic (following-up last year's Friendship Nation -- TMT Review), and they want you to be on it! This raucous, rambunctious, raging bunch of noise-makers are inviting family, friends, and online music and film magazine editors (whoa!) to contribute to the album's final track, "Chicken and Cheese." According to Upset the Rhythm, the track is "a celebration of requited love, a call to arms, an espionage and also an ever evolving loop about the world uniting through music -- hence the inspired idea to throw the song open to everyone."

How can you get involved? Well, the loop starts with the band, and then it continues by getting passed onto YOU. All you have to do is record your own music inspired by this loop and email it off to dbombarc@gmail.com. And if you're apprehensive about the openness of this project, don't fret: you're encouraged to "really go crazy" with your interpretation. "Change it as much as you like, take it to places only you can reach." Here are the lyrics, for your reference: "We write love songs in a secret language that no one can resist"

Due date is Tuesday, January 20, a day after President-elect Obama ramps up the rhetoric. The album will come out later this year on UTR.

2. GET NAKED

If the cover of Friendship Nation didn't already clue you in, Foot Village are absolute PERVS, which is why they are now asking fans to strip off their clothes, do a little dance, and then pose while they take a sexy snapshot of your hot-or-not bod for the album cover. The whole thing is really offensive to me because I look terrible naked, but I'm really eager to see all of your dicks and tits. So, if you live in the LA area and want to do nothing else but strip for some noise-makers on January 17 or 18 (just before Obama ramps up the rhetoric), get in contact with the group via dbombarc@gmail.com and RSVP. Oh, and the band wants you to take test photos and send them to me, too, thanks.

3. WATCH THEM LIVE

Foot Village will play some West Coast shows in February, and they want you to be there -- naked or not:
02.16.09 - Los Angeles, CA - Pehrspace *
02.18.09 - San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill &
02.19.09 - Portland, OR - Dekum Manor #
02.20.09 - Seattle, WA - Chilladelphia
02.21.09 - Oakland, CA - Heco's
02.22.09 - Davis, CA - House Party $
03.26.09 - Los Angeles, CA - The Smell !

* Puppy Dog, E&E

& The Drums, T.I.T.S., Casey and Brian

# Experimental Dental School, Magic Johnson, Pete Swanson

$ Ghost to Falco, Dead Western

! The Mae Shi, Past Live

4. DOWNLOAD FREE MUSIC

Grace Lee, Brian Miller, and Josh Taylor from Foot Village are set to release their sixth and final album, There it is, The Creeping Moral Decay of the Past Thousand Years, with their other group, Rose For Bohdan (which also features Cole Miller and Nick Murray). But since the album doesn't come out until June on Realicide Youth, they have provided this link, where you can download the entire album for free, in either MP3 or WAV formats ("But I only listen to Real Audio files!"). Okay, sure, the album is free, but please consider donating money (any amount), which you can send via PayPal to -- yep, you guessed it -- dbombarc@gmail.com.

Music clips, naked RSVPs, and money to one email address? Sounds like someone has life figured out.

[Photo: Jan]

Bruce Springsteen Rallies Again For the Little Guy

In keeping with the Boss' image as the working class hero, Bruce Springsteen & the E-Street Band will gear up to release a new greatest hits album to be distributed exclusively by independent record stores throughout the country. This move aims to help out small business and to keep money from the purchases Greatest Hits in the... hang on, what? Oh, I might have misread that. Let me grab that press release again... brb.

Okay, back. So, turns out I was dead fucking wrong. Bruce Springsteen is releasing Greatest Hits on January 13 exclusively through Wal-Mart. Silly me.

The compilation features 12 big ol' songs about rising up from oppression and what you should do around his engines, including "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)," "Born To Run," "Dancer In The Dark," "Born In The U.S.A," "The Rising," and "Radio Nowhere." The release next week coincides with the E-Street Band's performance during Super Bowl XLIII's halftime show on February 1.

I won't say that I'm not a little disappointed that Bruce is making me go to Wal-Mart to grip the new joint. Be it as it may. At least we still have a voice that speaks for us, like Rage Against the Machine, who rage against the machine by shunning major labels and refusing to play the AT&T stage at Lollapalooza... oh, wait.

Like a Hard-Livin’, Homicide-Obsessed Phoenix, Murder City Devils Return for a String of Totally Rockin’ Tourdates

This is kind of a big deal. We may not have a bitchin' economy right now, or the ability to pay off our student loans in a timely and affordable fashion, or even -- for some of us -- a job. But like how some people will always have Paris, we'll always have rock ‘n’ roll. And the band that begat modern-day punk stalwarts Pretty Girls Make Graves and Big Business is getting ready to kick it up a notch.

After breaking up in 2001 and leaving the punk rock world with a gaping nautical star-shaped hole in its heart, the sailor-obsessed, organ-lovin' Seattle garage rockers Murder City Devils have returned at last, for a series of very special, very-geographically limited touring engagements. Well, it's not that limited, if you live on the West Coast, that is, since they're cutting a pretty wide swath from Canada to Cali.

Since their final Halloween show so many years ago, the band has played a few notable shows within the past couple years, including 2006's Capitol Hill Block Party and 2007's Fun Fun Fun Fun Fest in Austin, TX. But this time around, we are talking multiple dates, multiple cities, multiple opportunities for sweaty, drunk fun. As a special addition to the tour, Sub Pop will be reissuing all of the band's full-length albums plus the Thelema EP on February 17, 2009. Right in time for everybody's favorite holiday!!!
02.11.09 - Seattle, WA - Showbox
02.12.09 - Seattle, WA - Showbox
02.13.09 - Vancouver, BC - Commodore Ballroom
02.14.09 - Portland, OR - Roseland Theater
02.15.09 - San Francisco, CA - Great American Music Hall
02.16.09 - Pomona, CA - Glass House
02.17.09 - Los Angeles, CA - Henry Fonda Theater

Open Your Eyes Records Teams With Torrent Site What.cd; Pigs Seen Flying Over RIAA Headquarters

In perhaps the most unlikely music pairing in, well, maybe the history of the music industry, Open Your Eyes Records has teamed up with What.cd, the website that brings you tons of lovely albums with quality standards via torrent (for “free”). Along with Waffles.fm, What.cd is responsible for filling the gigantic shoes of former music site OiNK. Despite the claims of industries that try to eliminate music piracy, these sites will not die, and obviously some people in the industry are starting to embrace these underground power sites with open arms.

According to What.cd (which you won’t be able to see unless you are one of the lucky elite invited to this site):

Open Your Eyes Records and What.cd are collaborating to revolutionize the industry landscape by making it clear that P2P technology and record labels can work hand-in-hand to accomplish their ultimate goals: getting artists heard and growing their fan base.

So, although Open Your Eyes Records are only responsible for one artist at the moment, it would seem that some record labels are indeed embracing file-sharing, though it seems pretty unlikely we will be getting a glowing press release from the RIAA anytime soon showing their enthusiasm for this partnership. Cheers to 2009 kicking off with a partnership in the industry that is truly embracing change! Now let’s see how "this one" can do.

Human Highway Announce Tourdates, Discover That Nick Thorburn Suffers From Dystychiphobia

My New Year’s resolution for 2009 was to stop inventing fictional anecdotes for my news stories, so that artists like Chad VanGaalen will stop sending me threatening emails because I may have compared him to Zac Efron in this story last year. Therefore, you can rest assured, members of Human Highway, that the following is 100% true: Dystychiphobia is the fear of car accidents, which is unfortunate for Nick Thorburn of Human Highway since he’s about to be stuck in a van for a good two weeks in March!

Damnit, first news story of ’09 and I’m already back to my old ways! Sorry, Nick -- but hey, it’s better than being compared to an orange-faced teen idol, right?
03.13.09 - Toronto, Ontario - The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern
03.14.09 - Chicago, IL - Empty Bottle &
03.15.09 - Kansas City, MO - The Record Bar &
03.16.09 - Norman, OK - Opolis Productions $
03.17.09 - Denton, TX - Hailey's $
03.18.09 - Austin, TX - TBA (SWSW)
03.19.09 - Austin, TX - TBA (SWSW)
03.20.09 - Austin, TX - TBA (SWSW)
03.21.09 - Birmingham, AL - The Bottletree &
03.22.09 - Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506 &
03.23.09 - Washington, DC - Black Cat &
03.24.09 - Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church &
03.25.09 - New York, NY - Le Poisson Rouge &

& Cotton Jones, The Magic

$ The Magic, Efterklang, and Peter Broderick

Michael Jackson Gives Back Beatles Catalog… WHEN HE DIES!

Former friends Sir Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson may have reconciliation in their collective futures. Jackson, who just recently started complaining of “dying” from a rare genetic lung disease, has begun to put his affairs in order before ascending to the heavenly throne of King of Pop. Now 50 and possibly wheelchair-bound, Jackson has drafted a new will with a specific clause stating that, should Jackson die, McCartney would regain control of his share of the Beatles catalog.

Jackson famously outbid McCartney with £350 million for the publishing rights to the entirety of the Lennon-McCartney songbook in 1985, which of course also marked the end of their brotherly goodwill and creative partnership. But Jackson is making it quite clear that he wishes to bury the axe, and an insider close to the pop star had this to say:

Michael is worried about his health so decided it was time to look at his finances. Most of his estate has been divided up between his three children. But Michael told his lawyers he was sad he no longer talks to Sir Paul and said he wanted to make things right.

Let’s hope this works out, because then they might write a sequel to the “Girl is Mine” song. I’ve always wondered who got to do the dirty deed with the lady at the end of the night.

Titus Andronicus Tour with Los Campesinos! I Second That Emotion!

Ah, the old heart-on-sleeve approach. Sometimes, nothing beats it. It worked for the Boss, it worked for U2, hell, it even worked for Jimmy Eat World in the ’90s. And now, as ever, the mantle has been passed to a new generation of “oh my god, this is what I’m feeling right now, just deal with it!” troubadours. And topping that list? The manic-depressive wunderkids of Titus Andronicus and Los Campesinos! And here in 2009, you can “just deal” with the fact that these hormone-high boys and girls will be teaming up to do a tour together!

That’s right, on the veritable eve of the re-mastered re-release of Titus Andronicus’s raucous The Airing of Grievances (due physically on [XL
Recordings->http://www.xlrecordings.com] on January 20), Titus Andronicus and Los Campesinos! will be striking out for a U.S. jaunt that will surely make you feel both incredibly excited and incurably depressed and angry, all within the span of a couple of hours. But you know who’s really going to be depressed? The poor guys who have to put “Titus Andronicus / Los Campesinos!” on all those marquees this winter. What a mouthful. And, do those plastic letter sets even come with punctuation marks, anyway?

Titus! Andronicus! Los! Campesinos! Ahhhh!
01.15.09 - Baltimore, MD - Ottobar
01.16.09 - Carrboro, NC - Cat’s Cradle
01.17.09 - Atlanta, GA - The Earl
01.19.09 - Jacksonville, FL Jack Rabbits
01.21.09 - Tallahassee, FL - Club Downunder
01.24.09 - Nashville, TN - Exit-In
01.25.09 - Memphis, TN - Hi Tone
01.27.09 - New Orleans, LA - One Eyed Jack’s
01.29.09 - Houston, TX - Walter’s on
01.30.09 - Austin, TX - The Parish
01.31.09 - Dallas, TX - Club Dada
02.03.09 - Lawrence, KS - The Bottleneck
02.03.09 - Lawrence, KS - The Bottleneck
02.04.09 - St. Louis, MO - The Gargoyle
02.06.09 - Madison, WI - Der Rathskeller
02.07.09 - Chicago, IL - Logan Square Auditorium
02.10.09 - Grand Rapids, MI - Calvin College Ladies Literary Club
02.11.09 - Columbus, OH - Wexner Center for the Arts
02.12.09 - Swarthmore, PA - Swarthmore College Olde Club
02.13.09 - Boston, MA - Paradise Rock Club
02.14.09 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
02.15.09 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom

Mario Speedwagon’s Under The Radar News Roundup: Best Buy Offers Buyouts To Employees, Brian Eno To Score Jackson Film, Merle Haggard Sues Some Tree Huggers, 75 Bit Torrent Sites Shut Down…ZZzzZzzZZZzzZ…

I hope everyone had a great holiday season and New Years. I got a microwave for Christmas and watched my drunken uncles and aunts play Rock Band while my little cousins sat looking miserable on the sidelines. Then on New Year's Eve, I went to MSG and saw My Morning Jacket and drank $9 beer -- holler. Anyway, while ya’ll were hanging with your families, absolutely nothing happened. This shit is gonna be boring.

- So, Best Buy is offering buyouts to 4,000 or so employees at their corporate office. The economy is a mess, so Best Buy needs to “reduce significant expense from its corporate payroll.” I wish someone would offer me some pimp buy out. I ate Cream of Chicken soup and some Airheads for dinner last night. Everyone from the janitor to the big VP dudes are being offered the buyout, which is based on age and time of service. They didn’t say how many people they wanted to get rid of, just that pretty much everyone was offered to volunteer to be fired. Nice.

- Brian Eno is gonna score Peter Jackson’s new movie, an adaptation of Alice Sebold’s “The Lovely Bones.” Part of the movie takes place in heaven (okay…) and stars Rachel Weisz, Mark Wahlberg, Susan Sarandon, Saoirse Ronan, Michael Imperioli, and more. Shit comes out December 11, 2009.

- Merle Haggard is suing the environmental group The Green Train for allegedly using his name and likeness to raise money. Haggard says the group, a nonprofit that educates the public about environmental issues, forged his signature and exaggerated his involvement. The Green Train has a six-week train tour departing from Portland, OR and traveling through 28 states while stopping for several concerts along the way, eventually ending in DC. I mean, he did donate money to them, and it doesn’t sound like a bad organization, so Merle needs to chill out. It’s not like he’s the face of the Puppy Kicker’s Club.

- Dutch anti-piracy company BREIN shut down 75 Bit Torrent trackers. Sites like Luckytorrents, Allmymovies, Digi-tor.org, and Seederstor.org were taken down. Yes, this is how boring the holidays were...

Seriously -- ATTENTION MUSICIANS -- someone needs to get arrested or make an angry blog post or start feuding with someone else, because, like, I seriously just wrote about some ‘nilla news items. Mario OUT.

RIP: Dave Dee, British Pop Star

From the BBC:

British pop star Dave Dee has died at the age of 65, following a three-year battle with cancer.

The singer continued playing gigs with band members Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Tich until close to the end of his life, record plugger Sean Cooney said.
"He didn't let it get him down. He was defying it," Mr Cooney added.

The group had eight top 10 hits, including a UK number one single in 1968 with The Legend of Xanadu, in which Dee famously cracked a whip.

- Dave Dee official website
- Dave Dee Wikipedia entry

  

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