It is incredibly easy to get buried in publicity emails, and lose track of what you should actually be covering versus what publicists want you to cover. Our publicist (Mike Farley, take a bow) sends me, on average, dozens of emails a day, all of which scream, “Listen to this right this second!” Before I know it, a band I like, like Travis, has a new album out, and I wonder why I haven’t heard a thing about it. Seriously, isn’t it strange that Travis put out an album and the label did nothing to promote it?
Anyway, at the end of the day today, Mike forwards an email from the Director of Publicity at Victory Records. The title of the email instantly gets my attention:
“I’m removing you from the promo mailing list.”
Even better, the email is a mass email, delivered to God knows how many other sites that Victory had once called upon. The body of the email is almost as funny as the title:
I have been sending you promotional material for almost a year now and have not seen sufficient action on your site for one reason or another.
If you have an issue with this, please respond within the next WEEK and let me know how this can improve, otherwise, please get in touch when you’re able to give us exposure.
Again, wow, classy.
Okay, here’s the point of my piece. I have been so consumed with putting out the fires in my inbox that it wasn’t until I forwarded this hilarious email to some of the writers on my staff that I even realized (my writers, unlike me, are still in contact with the outside world) that Victory records is in the middle of a veritable shitstorm of negative publicity. All of their biggest bands, including Hawthorne Heights, Taking Back Sunday and Atreyu, have jumped ship following charges of gross malfeasance. The final nail in the coffin came today, when former Victory Records VP Ramsey Dean wrote a lengthy dissertation for Absolute Punk about his time with the label. It has since been taken down but, thanks to Idolator and Google cache, the rant lives on. If you have ever supported this label, you owe it to yourself to read this and learn what is really going on. Racism, hookers and paranoia, oh my!
To read the entire rant (warning: it’s really, really long), click here. As a post script, I was tempted to tell the publicist that we would be delighted to be taken off their promo list, but I care so little about their product that I decided not to bother.
If you don’t think time flies, consider this: Guns N’ Roses’ classic Appetite For Destruction album is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its release this week. To commemorate the event, most of the original lineup is getting together tomorrow night at the Key Club in Los Angeles for a reunion of sorts, and while it’s unlikely that singer Axl Rose will be on hand, it hasn’t been ruled out either.
Tori Amos is hitting the road in support of her American Doll Posse album, beginning October 9 in Albany, New York and running through mid-December. A bunch of the shows will be recorded live for future “bootlegs.”
Garth Brooks was just added to the lineup for the Martin Luther King, Jr. benefit on September 18 at Radio City Music Hall in NYC. Others on the bill include Queen Latifah, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, Stevie Wonder, Aretha Franklin and Carlos Santana. The purpose of the show is to raise money for the MLK memorial in Washington.
The Arcade Fire has added a New York City tour date to their fall itinerary, Saturday October 6 at Randall Island. LCD Soundsystem will be the support act on the tour, and here are all of the confirmed dates Read the rest of this entry »
While our own Mojo Flucke was not too jazzed about the Exies’ latest album, A Modern Way of Living with the Truth, this song and video intrigues us. Inspired by all of the celebutante’s boorish antics of late (Paris, Nicole, Britney, etc.), the band recorded a new song, “God We Look Good (Going Down in Flames,” and edited the video themselves on their tour bus. The clip has already been pulled from YouTube (it’s been replaced with an edited version), though unless they went through it frame by frame, it’s tough to say what they found to be so objectionable. Some scantily clad women, some drug references, some bad words (maybe; we couldn’t really tell). Sounds like a typical day at the office for us. Either way, the clip doesn’t say anything we didn’t already know about our vapid celebrity culture or the Unstoppable Killing Machine that is George W. Bush (spoken with a hint of sarcasm), but the clip is definitely still worth a look.
To video the video, click here. Be patient, the clip is over 30MB in size, so it’ll take some time to load.
Dammit, I had this post all ready to go in my head, when I just looked at the site to see…Davy Medsker reported on the same band! Oh well, I’m seeing Daft Punk as well, and here is their cooler than cool appearance in an old Gap ad with Juliette Lewis (shame about how they chopped up “Digital Love,” though).
My experience with electronic acts live is pretty hit and miss. I love the Chemical Brothers, but the live versions of “Out of Control” and “Setting Sun” they played when I saw them in 1999 (Fatboy Slim was the opening act, and he KILLED) made me depressed. Where’s the big drum track? Where’s Noel? Where’s Barney? It just wasn’t right.
I am seriously hoping that is not what Daft Punk is like in concert. They’re closing Lollapalooza on Friday night, and I want these guys to freaking BRING IT. And they damn well better play this song.
Yours truly and the illustrious David Medsker will be heading out to Lollapalooza this year to check out some bands and write about what we heard and saw. I’m going to see some cool ones. He’s going to see some cool ones. Some of them we’re going to see together. We already have our little schedules of what we want to see ready to go. One of the bands I’m going to groove to is Yo La Tengo. It’ll be nice to see them. Here’s a video of them playing the catchy “Mr. Tough” live at a radio station.
British singer/songwriter Amy Winehouse seems to be everywhere lately. She’s going to be at the iTunes Festival in London on July 25 and fans are being given the chance to win tickets on her website at www.amywinehouse.co.uk. Winehouse is also playing Lollapalooza August 3 in Chicago.
Country music superstar Keith Urban had to cancel some upcoming tour dates in Europe due to international commitments. Word has it he’s being pressured by his label to step up writing for his next album, and also he’s been asked to write the “theme song” to his wife Nicole Kidman’s new movie called Australia.
Macy Gray is heading out on tour with Brand New Heavies in support of her latest album, Big. Predictably, the tour is being labeled as the “Big and Heavy” tour. The tour kicks off August 14 in Fort Lauderdale and runs through August 26 in Hollywood.
Pop rockers Lifehouse are out supporting their new album, Who We Are, along with the Goo Goo Dolls, but have already set another short tour for August with pop start Hilary Duff. Here are Read the rest of this entry »