N.W.A. Biopic in The Works; Are We Getting Our Checks Yet? Apparently Not Actual Working Title

After Diddy and co's neat, tidy little bow packaging of the complex life of rapper Notorious B.I.G. with the film Notorious (TMT Review), we knew it would only be a matter of time before another biopic on a legendary rap artist would appear. In this case, it's on a legendary rap group, as word dropped recently that pioneering gangster rappers N.W.A. will be getting the biopic treatment. The movie is being produced by founding N.W.A. members Ice Cube and Dr. Dre along with Eazy-E’s widow, Tomica Wright. According to Entertainment Weekly, the producers "are now actively searching for a director along the lines of Curtis Hanson," director of Eminem's pseudo-biopic 8 Mile.

Rap biopics promise more than the standard Ray-style musician biopics, though it's hard to imagine that, with members of the group serving as its producers, the movie won't be anything but the crystalline spectacles version of the group's story. Still, it's even harder to imagine that a movie about N.W.A., a group known for its riveting oral portraits of poverty, drug use, and disturbingly casual violence, will be eazy to digest. Sorry, couldn't resist! Currently, screenwriters are furiously trying to map out a montage sequence that effortlessly displays the boys talking hard, rebuffing trash talk, pulling people's cards, living in a legitimate manner, and otherwise not saying shit.

Casiotone For The Painfully Alone To Pack Up His Suitcase, Get Sad, Leave Home, and Go On Tour

This spring is looking to be a busy time for Casiotone For the Painfully Alone. Now that this depressing winter is on its way out, Casiotone's Owen Ashworth is ready to leave his cozy little bedroom and hit the road. He is starting off with a few dates in Texas -- which will see him playing the Tomlab/K/Asthmatic Kitty showcase, as well as the Team Clermont/Utne Reader one as part of Austin's SXSW -- and will soon after be jetting out to Europe to do a month of shows. A U.S. tour is expected this spring, too.

All this activity will be in support of his upcoming records: Advance Base Battery Life, a collection of 7-inch split-singles and compilation tracks he released from 2004-7, all but two of them on CD for the first time, out March 10 on Tomlab; and Vs. Children, the fifth album proper from CTFPA since 2006's Etiquette, which is due April 7 also on Tomlab.

Casiotone For the Painfully Alone Spring Dates:
03.15.09 - Denton, TX - Dan's Silverleaf (NX35 Festival)
03.16.09 - Houston, TX - The Mink Backroom
03.18.09 - Austin, TX - Beauty Bar (SXSW Showcase) #
03.19.09 - Austin, TX - Flamingo Cantina (Team Clermont/Utne Reader)
03.19.09 - Austin, TX - Ms Beas
04.11.09 - Munich, Germany - Orangehouse
04.12.09 - Cologne, Germany - Subway
04.14.09 - Bristol, UK - The Croft
04.15.09 - Nottingham, UK - The Bodega
04.17.09 - Galway, Ireland - Roisin Dubh
04.18.09 - Cork, Ireland - The Quad
04.19.09 - Dublin, Ireland - Whelans
04.20.09 - Manchester, UK - The Deaf Institute
04.21.09 - Glasgow, UK - Nice 'N Sleazy
04.22.09 - Edinburgh, UK - Sneaky Pete's
04.23.09 - Sheffield, UK - TBA
04.24.09 - York, UK - Fibbers
04.25.09 - Brighton, UK - Freebutt
04.27.09 - London, UK - The Luminaire
04.29.09 - Oslo, Norway - Bla
05.01.09 - Stockholm, Sweden - Strand
05.02.09 - Aarhus, Denmark - Pop Revo Festival
05.03.09 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Loppen
05.04.09 - Hamburg, Germany - Knust
05.06.09 - Prague, Czech Republic - Klub 007 Strahov
05.07.09 - Wien, Austria - Arena
05.08.09 - Minehead, UK - All Tomorrow's Parties
05.10.09 - Paris, France - Maroquinerie
05.11.09 - Amsterdam, The Netherlands - Paradiso
05.12.09 - Lueneburg, Germany - Asta Wohnzimmer
05.13.09 - Nuremberg, Germany - MUZ
05.14.09 - Wiesbaden, Germany - Schlachthof
05.15.09 - Luxembourg, Germany - Exit07
05.16.09 - Saarbruecken, Germany - Sparte04
05.17.09 - Leipzig, Germany - UT Connewitz

# Parenthetical Girls, No Kids, Jeremy Jay, Tara Jane O'Neil

Hella Back To Being A Duo, Working On New Album, Making For The Most Uneventful News Story I’ve Ever Written

According to a new blog post on their MySpace page, Hella have reshuffled themselves back to the original duo of Zach Hill and Spencer Seim. They are currently at work on Hella’s new album, which will be recorded and finished sometime this year on an as-yet unknown record label. Because this news is not particularly that exciting, I’ve decided to rewrite this story below and add in a few creative details that the Hella boys might have missed when they wrote their blog entry:

Hey guys! Hella is back to being a duo after kicking out Josh Hill (Zach’s cousin), Carson McWhirter (The Advantage), and Aaron Ross. Zach and Spencer decided it was time to part with the band members after learning they were the creators of this blog and that they still believe in the Easter bunny (see the cruel joke Zach and Spencer played on them in the “Band Members” section of their MySpace page.) Zach and Spencer are currently at work on their new album.

Chinese Hack into iTunes’ Code And Sells Gift Cards for Low, Low Prices

China renewed its charm offensive on TMT readers this week with an audacious hacking of iTunes’ gift certificate algorithm. These upstanding Chinese citizens are now selling $200 gift cards on Taobao, a Chinese equivalent to eBay, for as little as $2.60. Using the site’s instant messaging platform, the buyer receives a gift voucher code from the seller that can then be used to redeem the card from a user's iTunes account. The cards are also available in the U.S for around $43 on eBay.

The hacker’s craft is so brilliant that not only have they given Apple a fine kick in the teeth, but they’ve also posed a frustrating conundrum for those good-for-nothing capitalists. If Apple decides to change the gift voucher code generation algorithm, all of the cards available right now would become obsolete. Consequently, the only ones making money at this moment in time are the code sellers and the artists who still get paid when their music is downloaded from iTunes.

It’s been only a week since the Chinese government’s commendable decision to ban Oasis from playing dates in Shanghai and Beijing in April (TMT News) and now this ingenious nation delivers another slap in the face to shameless profiteers. Who ever said quasi-Communism doesn’t work?

Comrade Obama, start taking notes.

The Field to Release Follow-up to 2007’s From Here We Go Sublime, Which is Apparently Not a Record of Sublime Covers; Lou-Dog is Bummed

Man, if I was releasing a record, I would NOT forecast my subsequent album’s transcendent greatness in its fucking title. The Field’s Axel Willner may have learned a thing or two about that himself, as his follow-up to 2007’s hazy slow-burn smash, From Here We Go Sublime, bears the considerably more cautiously-ubiquitous title of Yesterday and Today.
But just to up the ante this time around, Willner's label, Kompakt, has teamed-up with Tom Waits Records... I mean, ANTI-, to release the anticipated follow-up, which is gonna drop May 19. Willner has also teamed up with Clash frontman Joe Strummer... I mean, Battles drummer John Stanier for the title track, and Willner's best press guys swear that he expands his palette, “continuing the oblique sampling strategy of From Here We Go Sublime while building up the rhythmic architecture.” So yeah, there’s that “ubiquity” theme again. Maybe this is a concept record?

Of course, since igniting loft party musical conversations around the world with Sublime, we all know that Willner has been much in demand as a remixer, with tracks from local British singer Thom Yorke to hot U.S. jazz combo Battles raising his profile significantly, so hopefully this album really does stack up, even if the title doesn’t. Otherwise that Sublime-covers route might not be a bad idea.

A ubiquitous “spring/summer North American tour” is also in the works, so sit tight on that. Meanwhile, here’s that good-old ubiquitous tracklist:

1. I Have The Moon, You Have The Internet
2. Everybody's Got To Learn Sometime
3. Leave It
4. Yesterday & Today (feat. John Stanier)
5. The More That I Do
6. Sequenced

Mia Doi Todd to Release Instrumental LP About Birds

The mercurial Mia Doi Todd (whose name is rather hard to say after a few drinks I discovered) will be going a different direction from her normal lush and haunting folk: completely instrumental. Given the rich compositions demonstrated on her earlier releases and her BFF opportunities with Dungen, Morning Music promises to be a layered listen.

Without turning this article into an itemized grocery list, it's interesting to note that Mia will be toolin' around with "drum, harmonium, piano, tin whistle, tamboura, acoustic guitar, and bongos," while collaborator Andres Renteria will take over "cajon, piano, wooden stool and udu" duties. Sounds like the hippie shit to me, but MDT consistently adds a foreboding tone to make each song daring and delicious, so I'm not worried.

Morning Music arrives April 14 on City Zen.

Paul McCartney Ticket Sales Break World Record; 4,000 Tickets in 7 Seconds

- Countless million-selling records? Check.
- Member of a band with a catalog of legendary songs? Check.
- Culture-defining musical statements? Check.
- Duetted with Michael Jackson? Check.
- Composer of the coolest James Bond theme? Check.

Despite being the most boringly irrelevant member of The Beatles (hate email here), Paul McCartney sure does have a lot of accomplishments as part of his legacy. However, not a man to rest on his laurels, McCartney has recently added a new success to the list, as his show on April 19 at Las Vegas’ New Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino has sold all 4,000 tickets in a record seven seconds, a rate of 600 seats per second. Tickets haven’t sold this fast since I conned people into buying their way into Obama’s victory rally on Election Night!

Promoters for the show, Concerts West/AEG Live, barely revealing their shock at the new triumph, expect even more world records to be set the night of the show. “Although Guinness World Records cites numerous records relating to Valentine's Day, nobody has managed a Valentine's party this big before -- so we'll be claiming that," said a spokesman for the agency. Tickets were released on February 14 (deliberately), so “lovers could express their feelings with the ultimate Valentine's Day gift surprise.” Ah, yes, nothing says love like chair-dancing to a song you’ve heard a thousand times.

Concerts West/AEG Live are hoping to set a world record for “the planet’s biggest ‘love-in.” Big love-in? Wow, that reminds me of San Fran in ’67 or Taiwan in 2007. Yep, Taiwan, that sounds like another world record to break: “And there is another Guinness record it would be cool to break there too -- the world record for the most couples hugging simultaneously is 1,451, set in Taiwan in 2007," the concert spokesman added, probably scowling slightly at the mention of Taiwan.

You know what? Fuck this. Fuck Paul McCartney. There is nothing more boring to me at this point in my life than talking about The Beatles or anything related to The Beatles. Yeah, we all know they did a lot for popular music. Get over it, talk about something else. I don’t think that anything annoys me more than when people list the Beatles as their favorite band. Big Fucking Surprise. Those people also enjoy food, and oxygen, oh and “being happy.” WE ALL LIKE THE BEATLES!

Tickets for the show are being scalped online for $1,000.

Radiohead Set to Return to the Studio Soon, Plan Summer Tour, Join “Featured Artists’ Coalition” Lobby Group

Speaking to BBC's Newsbeat, Ed O'Brien says Radiohead plan to hit the studio soon: "We are working on new material. We'll be doing some more recording. It's business as usual." The album will be, of course, the follow-up to 2007's In Rainbows (TMT Review), a concept album about Miley Cyrus' progression from baby to teenager, with drummer Phil Selway as Miley and bassist Colin Greenwood as her manager.

The interview took place yesterday in London at the launch for the Featured Artists' Coalition (FAC) lobby group. The group, which also includes Billy Bragg, Dave Rowntree (Blur), Kate Nash, and fucking Iron Maiden, intends to "stand up for all artists by engaging with government, music and technology companies, and collection societies, arguing for fair play and, where necessary, exposing unfair practices."

According to O'Brien: "Radiohead signed very traditional record company contracts, and it was exactly what we wanted to do at the time and there's no bitterness, but I think there's an inherent feeling that they're just a bit old school."

"There are some bigger names here but the whole essence of what we’re trying to do is really largely aimed at, and for the benefit of, the younger musician, the people coming into the music industry for the first time."

You can read more about FAC at the group's website, including its charter and demands for Fair Play.

Finally, Radiohead also plan to hit the road in the summer. "We've sort of finished the bulk of In Rainbows] touring. We will be doing a little bit of touring in the summer, watch this space!" Meanwhile, [E! wonders if Miley Cyrus deserves handicapped parking.

My Bloody Valentine (Non-3D Version) Confirm Post-Coachella Dates

AMG, chopped: A psychopathic miner terrorizes the town of Harmony. 10 years ago, the lone survivor of an accident deep in the mines awoke from a coma and slashed his way through the town in a bloody, vengeance-fueled rampage. Though shot and apparently killed, the memories of Harry Warden still haunt both the town and Tom Hanniger, the heir to the mine and one of the last people to see Harry before his disappearance. Just as Tom heads back to his hometown after a long time away, so do the killings ramp up again. While he mends his torn relationship with his ex-girlfriend Sarah and her husband Axl, citizens are knocked off one by one in spectacularly gruesome fashion. Has Harry come from beyond the grave or is there a new killer donning the suit and mask?

Well, I'll tell you: Tom picks Sarah up to take her to Axel's love nest to convince her that Axel is the killer. Axel then calls her and tells her that Tom is the killer. She crashes Tom's car and makes her way to Axel's shack. Sarah is chased by the killer all the way to the mine. There, Sarah goes into the shaft where the original murders took place, where she is joined by both Tom and Axel, and after a brief stand off, Axel and Sarah realize that Tom is delusional. A montage then plays out all the murders in the film again; this time showing the aftermath and beforehand, revealing Tom as the killer. The killing, in the mine in which Tom was locked in the cage, is played out again, this time showing Tom committing the murder, then locking himself in the cage (so, it was a hallucination that Harry locked him in the cage). Sarah shoots a tank and causes an explosion and subsequently a partial cave-in. She escapes with Axel. A rescue team comes in to the mine to help Tom, but Tom kills one of the rescuers and escapes the scene dressed in the rescue worker's clothing, setting up a potential sequel.

Now that I've spoiled the ending for My Bloody Valentine 3-D, you can concentrate on gearing up for My Bloody Valentine's upcoming tourdates:
04.18.09 - Indio, CA - Coachella
04.21.09 - Austin, TX - Austin Music Hall
04.22.09 - Dallas, TX - The Palladium
04.24.09 - Denver, CO - The Fillmore Auditorium
04.27.09 - Seattle, WA - WaMu Theater at Qwest Field
05.28.09 - Barcelona, Spain - Primavera Sound Festival
05.29.09 - Barcelona, Spain - Primavera Sound Festival

Aaron Dilloway and Nate Young Go To Europe For Spring Break Tour

It seems like only yesterday when Aaron Dilloway and Nate Young were scumming up your neighborhood basement with their junky electronics and broken guitar squall as part of Wolf Eyes. But now it's 2009, and things have changed: Aaron Dilloway left the band four years ago and was replaced by Mike Connelly of Hair Police; they're signed to Sub Pop; and they've become one of the biggest "noise" bands around. Over the years, both Dilloway and Young (who is still in Wolf Eyes) have kept themselves busy by working on various projects and running their respective labels -- Dilloway with Hanson Records and Young with his AA Records label.

This March and April will see the two heading to Europe for a set of dates, with each of them performing solo sets. Before hitting the road, however, the two will head up to Stockholm, Sweden to do some recording at the Institute for Electro-Acoustic Music in Sweden (EMS). From there, they will play some select dates with The Skull Defekts and finally end things off in Glasgow, Scotland.

Here are the dates:
03.26.09 - Stockholm, Sweden - Skull Club*
03.27.09 - Gothenberg, Sweden - Roda Sten*
03.28.09 - Oslo, Norway - Revolver*
03.29.09 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Lygten*#
03.30.09 - Berlin, Germany*!
03.21.09 - Den Haag, Netherlands - Helbard$
04.01.09 - Antwerp, Belgium
04.02.09 - Paris, Frace
04.03.09 - Lisbon, Portugal
04.04.09 - Porto, Portugal
04.06.09 - Brighton, UK - The Freebutt %
04.07.09 - London, UK - The Grosvenor
04.08.09 - Nottingham, UK - The Chameleon
04.09.09 - Leeds, UK
04.10.09 - Glasgow, Scotland - Stereo+

! Neptune

*The Skull Defekts

#Blue Sabbath Black Fiji

$ God Willing, Unicorn Hard-On

% Blood Stereo, Family Battlesnake

+ Heather Leigh Murray & Richard Youngs

Photo: [Seth Tisue]