Category: News Weblog

It’s me, Kathy, I’ve come home

New Music Express has a short tidbit about the forthcoming new album by Kate Bush.

It will be a double-LP titled Aerial, and NME lists Nov. 7 as the release date. I’m assuming that’s a UK release date, because Nov. 7 is a Monday, and US release dates fall on Tuesdays, which would confirm Rolling Stone’s earlier report of Nov. 8.

A double album after a 12-year wait sounds like a fair exchange, although double albums can be pretty tricky. Now November seems far away.

UPDATE: Billboard magazine takes the same press release and adds a bit more history for us damn Yankees who may not remember who Kate Bush is. (I bet Big Boi from OutKast must be ecstatic.)

The Kate Bush News site also mentions a number of interesting rumours surrounding the album.

As she once sang on “The Sensual World”, “Mmm yes.”

You’ve stolen my Texas dates

I got a very rare e-mail announcement from Kronos Quartet today, and there’s quite a bit of news.

First off, the quartet announced its 2005/2006 season, and dammit — there aren’t any Texas dates on there. They are, however, playing four dates in Hawaiʻi, so catch them if you can — they hit the islands maybe once every 10 years.

Kronos also has a new cellist. Jeffrey Ziegler replaces Jennifer Culp, who in turn replaced original cellist Joan Jeanrenaud back in 1999. I always kind of liked that affirmative action line-up with the one female member, so it’ll take some adjustment now that Kronos is all men.

Of course, You’ve Stolen My Heart: Songs from R.D. Burman’s Bollywood hits stores today (Aug. 23). Kronos collaborates with singer Asha Bhole on an album of music from one of the most prolific composers in India’s film industry. Some of the samples from the album sound terrific.

I’m in trouble (or maybe not …)

iTunes launches in Japan.

According to various sources, iTunes is working with 15 Japanese labels to offer its songs. Sony Music has a competing service, so it’s not on board. Nor, does it seem, Victor. So I guess no Quruli or Hajime Chitose downloads for me.

Toshiba-EMI and Avex Trax, however, are signed up, and a quick search for some out-of-print CDs by Fleming Pie and Heart Bazaar turned up.

Hell, they even have Zazen Boys.


UPDATE: … if you live in Japan, that is. iTunes only accepts credit cards from the country of origin. The Japan store only accepts Japanese numbers, the Swedish store, Swedish numbers, etc. In short, Yankees out now! Such untapped leverage. Those wacky music industry executives.

I could rule the world if I only had the parts

A one-sentence item in ICE magazine announced reissue label Hip-O Select is releasing the complete recordings of the Waitresses on Aug. 19.

I haven’t been able to find any additional information on this release, but I am so there if this turns out to be true.

The Waitresses are responsible for those ’80s staples, “I Know What Boys Like” and “Christmas Wrapping”, although the two albums they recorded for Island Records are pretty smart.

A 1990 best-of collection was replaced in 2003 with a 20th Century Masters edition, which lopped off a few tracks from that earlier release. It’ll be nice to hear both complete albums and anything else Hip-O-Select may uncover from its vaults.

In the meantime, check out Future Fossil Music, the website of the Waitresses’ mastermind Chris Butler. He made the Guiness Book of World Records for recording the longest pop song (“The Devil’s Glitch”, running more than an hour) and recorded new songs using old technology such as wax cylinders. Now that’s lo-fi for you.

UPDATE: It looks like this recording was originally scheduled for a March release, then bumped to June. Now there’s report of the August date. I’ll be hitting up the Hip-O-Select web site regularly till I find more information.

SXSW announces music festival schedule

The South by Southwest Music Festival announced its full schedule for 2005. Like last year, Carribbean Lights hosts Japan Nite 1 on Friday, while Elysium hosts Japan Nite 2 on Saturday. Here is the full-schedule:

Japan Nite 1

Carribbean Lights

Friday, March 18, 2005

8:00 — Titan Go King’s

9:00 — i-dep

10:00 — The Emeralds

11:00 — Noodles

12:00 — the pillows

Japan Nite 2


Saturday, March 19, 2005

8:00 — The Hot Shots

9:00 — Suns Owl

10:00 — Zanzo

11:00 — Petty Booka

12:00 — Bonnie Pink

Of course, SXSW just wouldn’t be SXSW without a few scheduling conflicts. The remaining Japanese bands in the festival are spread throughout the schedule:

mono — Wednesday, March 16, 1 a.m. @ Eternal

Fantasy’s Core — Wednesday, March 16, 10 p.m. @ Room 710

DMBQ — Friday, March 18, 11 p.m. @ Club Deville

Bleach — Friday, March 18, 11 p.m. @ Whiskey Bar

Guitar Wolf — Friday, March 18, 1:15 p.m. @ Beerland

Shonen Knife — Friday, March 18, 1 p.m. @ Elysium

Gitogito Hustler — Saturday, March 19, 9 p.m. @ Beerland

My Way My Love — Saturday, March 19, 9 p.m. @ Exodus

Clara Bell — Saturday, March 19, 12 a.m. @ The Hideout

Electric Eel Shock — Saturday, March 19, 12 a.m. @ Beerland

The Velvet Voice

Knight Ridder put a story on its wire service about Latina rockers, and it name-dropped all the usual suspects — Ely Guerra, Julieta Venegas, Soraya (who strikes me as being a bit too pop to put in league with Venegas, but I don’t speak Spanish, so I can’t decipher the content of her songs anyway …)

What caught my attention was mention of a solo album by Andrea Echeverri, the lead singer of Aterciopelados. It looks like it’s already been released in South America, but it should hit Stateside in February.

It’s been a few years since Aterciopelados released something other than a greatest hits collection, so it’ll be welcome to hear Echeverri on her own. Judging by the snippets on her site, the album sounds pretty ethereal.

This woman’s work, this woman’s world

A co-worker of mine once said Kate Bush needs to release a new album and save the world from Tori Amos. Well, the world will be saved in 2005. She’s releasing an album next year.

Truthfully, the one Kate Bush album I owned, The Sensual World, bored me, and the only thing I own of hers now is The Whole Story. Still, I like Kate Bush. Not only did she give the world “Wuthering Heights”, but she provided ACO the song for one of her best performances — “This Woman’s Work”.

I really hope Big Boi gets to do his collaboration with Kate.

Curse of the best new artist

The 47th Annual Grammy nominations have been announced, and I am a bad person for wishing this, but …

I hope to diety Maroon5 wins the Grammy Award for Best New Artist. Kanye West is way too talented to be cursed with that award, and if any band deserves the Best New Artist curse, it’s Maroon5. Hell, I wouldn’t even wish it on Joss Stone either.

Los Lonely Boys would also deserve some Best New Artist obsolesence because, as OmarG points out, these guys are boring as fuck.

Piano and string quartet

More missives from the avant-garde …

Can’t deep link it from here, but the new release page of Nonesuch Records lists Jan. 11 as a release date for the next album by Kronos Quartet, titled Mugam Sayagi: The Music of Franghiz Ali-Zade. Kronos originally recorded the title track of this upcoming album for its 1994 album, Night Prayers. It’s hands-down the most thrilling piece on the album, which says a lot since the album is packed with a lot of incredible works. (Night Prayers by Giya Kancheli is the very definition of “intense”.)

On a recent visit to Wayne Horvitz’s official site, I discovered news of the release of Solos, an album of piano works with his wife Robin Holcomb. “With” is a sketchy term, because each plays their own work solo. The pair originally recorded each other’s pieces, but when putting together the album, they felt performances of their own works flowed better. (An e-mail interview with the pair says as much.) Solos is available from the Songlines label.