Miscellaneous DEBRIS

Music news from wherever the hell I heard it first.

Let's see, what can I tell ya ...

... Those who remember the glory days of traveling alt-fest Lollapalooza, and turned up their noses at recent attempts to revive the shindig as a one-off Chicago-based event, should maybe pay attention this year. Lollapalooza '06, scheduled for Aug. 4-6 at the Windy City's Grant Park, is shaping up to be one of the grandest fringe/jam/underground/mainstream-cool showcases, well, every, really. One-hundred-and-thirty bands, running the gamut from old-school Lolla vets (Red Hot Chili Peppers) to hip faves (New Pornographers and Death Cab for Cutie) to urban icons (Kanye) to popular gimmickry (Matisyahu) to bands I love (Nada Surf, The Hold Steady, The Frames, Wolfmother) to, uh, reunited '80s obscurities (Poi Dog Pondering), will play eight stages over the course of three days. Hit up www.lollapalooza.com for the whole jaw-dropping lineup ...

... Speaking of the Chili Peppers, those enduring punk-funk freakazoids turned alt-rock elder statesmen, their first album in four years, Stadium Arcadium, drops on May 9. Arcadium, an ambitious and possibly self-indulgently bloated 28-track double album, was produced by longtime RHCP associate Rick Rubin at the same Hollywood Hills mansion in which the '91 breakthrough Blood Sugar Sex Magic was recorded ...

... Speaking of rap-rock pioneer/Slayer enabler/Jay-Z-video cameo artist Rubin, word has it he's currently working on the next Metallica album, though it's doubtful even his raw-and-real production style can strip away the layers of suck that have accumulated on that former juggernaut's rusting hulk over the last decade ...

... Speaking of Metallica, it seems former bassist Jason Newsted is teaming up with Guns N' Roses alum Gilby Clarke and reality-television whore Tommy Lee for the second season of the CBS reality competition Rock Star. The, um, er, "supergroup" — optimistically and somewhat half-assedly named Supernova — will select a vocalist from a throng of hopefuls deluded enough to think this might actually be a good career move ...

... Speaking of bad career moves, here's one: Lending your voice to a gimmicky album that pays tribute to the beloved band you ruined by leaving to pursue a misguided solo career. Now, who could possibly think — oh, yeah, David Lee Roth. Diamond Dave will be featured on the John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band's covers of Van Halen classics "Jump" and "Jamie's Cryin'" on the forthcoming VH tribute Strumming with the Devil, which Appalachia-fies the original Van Halen lineup's best tunes. No release date has yet been set for the album, which also boasts contributions by David Grisman & Sons, Mountain Heart and Blue Highway, among others ...

... Speaking of blasts from the past, remember The Vines, the Nirvana-copping Australian band with the crazy singer kid that scored a massive hit with "Get Free" in '02? If you haven't been keeping up, the group's second album tanked, and singer/songwriter Craig Nicholls' craziness was subsequently attributed to Asberger's Syndrome, a specific type of autism that triggers bizarre behavior in certain situations. While Nicholls' ability to play live remains in question, he's continued to produce music, and The Vines will release their third album, Vision Valley, via Capitol Records on April 4 ...

... Speaking of craziness, you probably already know that Ministry's July 11 Tampa Bay area date has been moved to St. Pete's Jannus Landing, but did you know about the big metal-scene names populating the band these days? (All right, that was a weak segue, but by now I'm all out of inspired transitions.) In addition to semi-permanent collaborator and former Killing Joke bassist Paul Raven, Ministry principal Al Jourgensen has enlisted Slipknot drummer Joey Jordison, Fear Factory keyboardist John Bechdel, and — hell yes — Prong founder, guitarist and scary-looking man Tommy Victor for his current road jaunt, called MasturbaTour. We all know Ministry sucked for a while, but '04's Houses of the Mole was an excellent piece of work. Let's hope the upcoming Rio Grande Blood (due on May 2) follows suit ...

... And with that vaguely locally related bit, let's move on to some more Bay area scene-related stuff ...

... Tampa punk act New Bruises (several members of which formerly walked together and rocked together in Mid Carson July) has a new album, Transmit! Transmit!, out on locally-based label Kiss of Death Records, and it's a doozy. Shades of Dillinger Four and Hot Water Music color thoughtful, funny and energetic rock, but the guys are doing their own thing here, and it's quite good. The band has also retained the services of a semi-big-time PR company, which is a really good idea, but I always think it's funny when I get an envelope from some other city and open it up to find a CD by a local band I've seen a bunch of times ...

... Wildly popular, long-defunct Pinellas County jam-pop act The Gita, which set a record by winning, I think, 7,000 of the Planet's Best of the Bay Awards in one year, will reunite for one night only at St. Pete's State Theatre on Sat., May 27. We thought we'd warn you early, so you have plenty of time to go back and re-memorize all the lyrics on Feature Presentation ...

... Most of late Tampa emo act Greenhaven has moved on to, ahem, greener pastures in the form of new outfit A Fight for Apollo. AFFA is more rooted in old-school Southern Cali melodic hardcore than its predecessor, and the group is looking for a vocalist to "yell and sing, NOT SCREAM!" The guys have put a couple of instrumental tracks up at www.purevolume.com/afightforapollo so folks can give 'em a listen and get in touch if they're interested in auditioning ...

... And lastly, if you're feeling like you're missing out on new local music because you sit at your computer and do faux-geeky things like filling out Myspace surveys and stealing Avenged Sevenfold mp3s all day and night, well, you don't have to feel that way anymore. The Southeast Music Association is now in the podcast game, bringing you a new program chock full of Bay area tunes every month. The last two episodes are available for download at www.smaflorida.com; to subscribe to future episodes, just paste http://www.smaflorida.com/audio/smashradio.xml into the "subscribe" option on your iTunes or other streaming-audio player. And bands, send your stuff to SMA, 8515 92nd Terrace N., Seminole 33777 for podcast consideration.

Oh, and I almost forgot one last thing: Todd Rundgren is the singer for reactivated '80s icons The Cars, now known as The New Cars. Contemplate that shit until next week.

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