Thursday, May 28, 2009

Coming soon... the Weezer snuggie

If you haven't bought a Snuggie yet, wait a few weeks longer, because Weezer are coming out with the Wuggie... the Snuggie with a Weezer logo on it.

In other bizarre Weezer news, they covered Lady GaGa and MGMT recently. Catch the video here. At the show, drummer Pat Wilson was the third guitarist and Josh Freese (ex-Perfect Circle and Nine Inch Nails, among others) was the drummer. No word on whether or not that's the configuration they're taking on tour this summer.

In non-bizarre Weezer news, they will probably have a new single out this summer. They may or may not have a new album out this summer, but probably by fall. They're still opening for Blink-182 in August and September.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Barenaked Ladies get their own ice cream

If you live in Canada, or will perhaps be traveling there soon, you can get a carton of If I had a Million Flavours, the new Barenaked Ladies-themed ice cream from Ben & Jerry's. As you can guess from the spelling of the word "flavours," it's Canada-only, and as you can guess from the "million" part, it's chock full of various chunks of chocolate, toffee, peanut butter, almonds, and other stuff. If anybody wants to ship me a carton in dry ice, e-mail me for the mailing address.

In other Barenaked Ladies news, the now-four-piece just began recording a rock album, says the Canadian Press.

Monday, May 25, 2009

This week in reunions... Toad the Wet Sprocket

* For the second year in a row, Toad the Wet Sprocket have reunited to do some summer dates. Just like last year, don't expect a new album. I contemplated going to see them here in Atlanta this Sunday, but tickets are $35, so... probably not.

* Not sure if this qualifies as a reunion, given that all three bands have kept going for the last decade in varying combinations (most with just the lead singer remaining as an original member), but Seven Mary Three, Sponge, and Days of the New are doing a package tour this summer, mostly in casinos and small clubs. I've got some Seven Mary Three content I've been meaning to put up; I'll try to do that soon.

* Stone Temple Pilots are back at it this summer, for a couple of weeks at least; they're touring the northeastern US and Canada from July 7-18. Meanwhile, Scott Weiland's doing some West Coast solo shows this month.

* Oh, and LFO are back together, but right now it's just for one show in New York. And I don't care what you think, this song was pretty good:

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Your BTE update

After briefly hitting the Top 10 (on iTunes at least), Better than Ezra's new album Paper Empire debuted at #62 this week, their highest placement since their first album, Deluxe (you know, the one with "Good" on it).

And now the band's on tour all summer. Dates below:

May 29 & 30 - House of Blues, New Orleans
June 2 - Flytrap, Tulsa
June 3 - Whiskey Roadhouse, Council Bluffs, IA
June 5 - Fort Worth Zoo, Fort Worth
June 6 - House of Blues, Houston
June 7 - House of Blues, Dallas
June 9 - Soul Kitchen, Mobile, AL
June 11 - Culture Room, Ft. Lauderdale, FL
June 12 - Jannus Landing, St. Petersburg, FL
June 13 - House of Blues, Lake Buena Vista, FL
June 14 - Variety Playhouse, Atlanta
June 16 - 9:30 Club, Washington DC
June 17 - Trocadero Theatre, Philadelphia
June 18 - Lafayette Square, Buffalo, NY
June 19 - Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza, New York City
June 20 - Paradise Rock Club, Boston
June 23 - House of Blues, Cleveland
June 24 - Pioneer Court, Chicago
June 25 - The Vogue, Indianapolis
June 26 - 4th Street Live, Louisville
June 27 - House of Blues, Chicago
June 28 - Summerfest, Milwaukee
July 9 - Alive at Five, Stamford, CT
July 10 - Bottle and Cork, Dewey Beach, DE
July 11 - NorVA, Norfolk, VA
July 12 - The National, Richmond, VA
July 14 - Rex Theatre, Pittsburgh
July 15 - Emerald Theatre, Mount Clemens, MI
July 17 - Snowden Grove Amphitheater, Southaven, MS
July 19 - 3rd and Lindsley, Nashville
July 24 - Kansas City Live, Kansas City
July 25 - The Pageant, St. Louis
July 30 - Alive @ Five, Stamford, CT
August 12 - The Independent, San Francisco
August 13 - Music in the Park, San Jose, CA
August 21 - Power Plant Live, Baltimore
August 22 - Downtown Live, Raleigh, NC

And for fun, here's Taylor Swift covering BTE's "Our Last Night:"

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

This week in reunions... Sugar Ray

* Jane's Addiction's tour with Nine Inch Nails only just started, and already the band is feuding with bassist Eric Avery, who stayed away from the previous two reunions. Oh, and Perry Farrell tore a calf muscle in his leg and will have to perform on crutches.

* Sugar Ray are back together; you may remember that lead singer Mark McGrath took some time out to host Extra, host a Pussycat Dolls-themed reality show, and appear on an episode of Law and Order: SVU. Their new album Music for Cougars comes out July 21, and they'll be on tour most of the summer. Listen to the first single, "Boardwalk," here.

* The Wallflowers will indeed have something to promote on their summer tour: a greatest hits album with two "previously unreleased" tracks.

* Rancid have a new album, out June 2, though I'm not sure if it counts as a reunion. Their last album was in 2003, and since then they've done a variety of side projects and solo albums. But they toured in '06. So... regardless, the new album's called Let the Dominoes Fall.

* The dates from the Blink-182 reunion tour have been released, and it starts July 24. Weezer, the All-American Rejects, and Fall Out Boy are opening on various dates.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Britpop compilations have begun

Common People: the Britpop Story, a three-disc set of the best of UK guitar music in the '90s (minus Blur, Oasis, the Verve, and Travis, who must have been too expensive), comes out in June. Included are tracks by Pulp, the Stone Roses, Supergrass, and Gay Dad, as well as this classic from 1995:

I lived in the UK in 1998-99, and disc 3 is essentially that mini-era's greatest hits, so I might think about picking this up. No Three Colours Red, though?

Monday, May 18, 2009

New Nirvana DVD

OK, newish. A new DVD, Life Takes No Prisoners, of Nirvana's famed 1992 Reading Festival performance has just been released. So if you've ever wanted to hear Nirvana cover Boston's "More than a Feeling," this is your chance.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Better than Ezra's big comeback

As I write this (Thursday morning), Better than Ezra's Paper Empire is the #7 album on the iTunes charts. Yesterday, it was #3 (this from a band whose five previous albums peaked at #35, #64, #129, #110, and #84 on the Billboard charts). The album got a featured review at allmusic. Entertainment Weekly is streaming one of the tracks, "Just One Day" (listen here). Bands like the Fray name-check them as an influence, and Kevin Griffin wrote a song with American Idol winner David Cook.

Does the great '90s retro revival start here? While you ponder that, check out BTE's new video, "Absolutely Still":

Friday, May 8, 2009

No more Oasis until 2014?

As a former diehard Oasis fan (posters in my college dorm room and everything), I'm embarrassed to admit that I a) didn't get their most recent album Dig Out Your Soul when it came out, instead waiting for Christmas, and b) still haven't listened to it. But it appears I've got ample time to get acquainted with it, because Noel Gallagher tells Q Magazine that the band probably won't record another one for five years. In the meantime, the band will wrap up its touring with European dates this summer, and then Noel plans to do a solo album.

This certainly doesn't make me as sad as if the announcement had been made in 1997; I'm one of the few people who enjoyed Heathen Chemistry and parts of Standing on the Shoulder of Giants, but the parts I've heard of the new album were awfully same-y, and I've skipped chances to see them on tour twice in the last five years. Are you going to miss Oasis?

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Return of the Rentals (again)

Was Matt Sharp the key to Weezer? Most fans feel the Blue album and Pinkerton outshine the four post-Sharp albums. Sharp quit Weezer during the long post-Pinkerton hiatus to concentrate on his side project, the Rentals, who were then riding high off of "Friends of P". Then he broke up the Rentals after a poor-selling follow-up, did some solo work on tiny indie labels, sued Weezer for songwriting royalties, and now... the Rentals are back.

That's "Song of Remembering," off their odd new project Songs About Time, which will consist of some digital mini-albums, some short films, and some photographs. Get more info (and a four-song player of the first EP) here.

Weezer, meanwhile, are headlining the KROQ Weenie Roast in LA May 16, and are still supposedly touring with Blink-182 this summer, though as of yet no dates have been announced.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

This week in reunions... The Wallflowers

* With Jakob Dylan back in the fold, the Wallflowers are touring in June and July. No new album as of yet, though be honest: do you know anyone who's bought one of their albums since 1998? I didn't think so.

* Taking a page from the Everclear playbook, Evan Dando is releasing an all-covers album with the Lemonheads, and going on tour in June. This isn't really a reunion, because only Dando remains from the band's '90s heyday.

* The Limp Bizkit reunion tour starts... in eastern Europe. The band will be playing arenas and festivals in Latvia, Ukraine, Slovakia, and Bulgaria, among other places, this summer. No word on a new album or a US tour.

* The Alice in Chains reunion album, which we first heard about in February 2008, is now supposedly coming out in September. For real.

* Oh, and Creed is getting back together. But I don't really want to talk about that.