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Full Report for 05/14/2008
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Van Halen Live DVD?
Blabbermouth reports: Van Halen is reportedly filming select shows on its current tour for an upcoming DVD release. Last night's (May 13) concert at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey was the first performance to be filmed, according to singer David Lee Roth.

Eddie Van Halen recently spoke to People magazine about his health in the wake of the March 2008 announcement that VAN HALEN's ongoing world tour was put on ice after the guitarist was diagnosed with an unspecified medical condition.

There are still no public details on exactly what ailed, or ails, the guitarist, but he says, quote, "I feel excellent. I'm healthier than I've ever been. It's wonderful." - more on this story

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Def Sex Pistols Leppard Supergroup Preview
PR reports: Man Raze, a newly formed rock outfit featuring Phil Collen of Def Leppard, Simon Laffy from Girl and Paul Cook of The Sex Pistols, have announced the release of their full-length album "Surreal" on June 3, 2008 via VH1 Classic Records.

Mixing the raw energy of the Pistols mixed with the immaculate pop rock of Def Leppard, Man Raze is a unique clash of 70's simplicity with 80's excess, punk clubs with stadium rock. Whether it's the punk vibrancy of "Turn It Up", the beautiful rock craftsmanship of "Every Second Of Every Day" or the reggae-soaked dub mix of "Runnin' Me Up", Surreal is an album that continuously pumps out the rock hits that these three members are most notorious for.

Recently, Man Raze filmed a private show in Los Angeles that will premiere on VH1 Classic.com later this year. The band plans to launch a U.S. tour in 2008. "The fun part about Man Raze is that musically we can go off in any direction from rock to alternative the next," said Phil Collen. We are looking forward to playing live this fall." - Wanna hear what they sound like? Check it out here.

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Grohl's Open Response To Open Letter To Metallica
antiMusic reports: Turns out that Dave Grohl's "open letter to Metallica" wasn't really an open letter at all. A fan wrote us to let us know that it was an interview quote taken out of context by Metal Hammer, who reportedly published it as a 'letter of the month'. (We don't subscribe so we can't verify this. The original "open letter" was emailed to us as well. It was funny, so we ran with it). So this is all he said, fan said stuff, but Dave Grohl took to the Foos website to address the issue. Here is what he had to say:

Just wanted to write a quick note to clear up this whole "Open letter to Metallica" fiasco......For the record, I never "wrote" anything to Metallica. I was asked by a journalist, at the end of a long interview (abut the Foo Fighters) to give a quick message to Metallica in the studio.

So, I rattled that quote off the top of my head. No biggie, right? Somehow it became my "open letter" to the band, and now it's been picked up by everyone from Blabbermouth to Rolling Stone (as if anyone really cares!). Now, it's true that I've been a loyal fan of this band for 25 years, and I can't wait to hear the new ----, but an "open letter" to the band?!!?? Nah. Not my style. I'd rather just text 'em - more on this story

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Guns N' Roses Guitarist Offering Free Download
PR reports: Ron Thal aka Bumblefoot is treating his fans new and old to a bit of free music before his new album "Abnormal" is released to the public for sale, by offering the title track free for download. As with his previous albums Thal will be self-releasing "Abnormal" online.

"I never went along with the way the music industry did things, and have always been rebelliously against it, spouting off how the system doesn't work, and how bands should be DIY and make it just about the music and the fans. 10 years ago I was giving away songs on Napster and releasing my own albums, selling them online. 10 years later, I still do it and still stand by it - ---- the business, connect directly with the fans."

With recording completed and finishing touches being added to the tracks and art work, "Abnormal" will be ready for release In early June, with the free track available for download Monday May 19th, 2008. Along with CD's being available for purchase, the tracks will be available for download on iTunes, and a very special limited edition Fan Pack will be available for diehard fans that want something a bit different in a limited quantity. - More from Ron and more details on the CD

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Joey Ramone Birthday Bash
PR reports: Celebrating what would have been the 57th birthday of punk-icon Joey Ramone, the annual Joey Ramone Birthday Bash will take place Monday, May 19th at The Fillmore New York at Irving Plaza. Mickey Leigh, event organizer and brother of Joey Ramone, has announced that, as part of the 8th annual Bash, fans will be treated to a special reunion appearance from Manitoba's Wild Kingdom featuring Handsome Dick Manitoba, Andy Shernoff, Ross the Boss & JP Thunderbolt.

This year's headliners are Mary Weiss (the Shangri-La's) and Richard Lloyd (Television) and the SmuftyDogs. The spectacular party will conclude with The Joey Ramone Birthday Bashers featuring Jesse Malin, Cheetah Chrome, Walter Lure, Tish & Snooky, Jean Beauvior, Andy Shernoff, Joe McGinty, JP Thunderbolt, Al Maddy, Ivan Julian, Bobby Steele & Mickey Leigh. Also appearing are Charm School, Semi-Precious Weapons, The Independents, Local H, L.E.S. Stitches and Rachel Newman. In what has become a Birthday Bash tradition, Sean O'Sullivan's Punk Pipers will round out the night on the bagpipes. The night will be MCed by "Little Steven" Van Zandt, Matt Pinfield and Peter Aschner. Additional surprises are expected at the evening's events.
- more on this story

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Lollapalooza, Macca Makes Greens See Red, Scary Van Found, Meshuggah's Horrifying Video, Warped, And Another Fest Is Born
antiMusic reports: We have so many quicks ready to go that we have to post this bonus night quicks edition for you! We start off with this tidbit from NME: Iron & Wine, Toadies, Saul Williams, DeVotchKa, Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears and Wild Sweet Orange have been added to the bill for Lollapalooza 2008.

Macca has some of his fellow greens seeing red! Here is part of the Jam! report: Paul McCartney has long been an outspoken advocate of environmental causes and animal rights. He is a vegetarian who won't even wear leather shoes. But now he's being criticized for having a hybrid Japanese car flown to him in Britain rather than having it sent by ship. more

Following the theft of their van and gear, Bryan Scary and the Shredding Tears have finally hit some good luck. First, the van was found (sans engine, transmission, differential, trailer and gear) on the side of the 10 freeway in LA last week. Despite having to cancel a number of shows, the band is still playing the Boston, NY and DC shows, along with a Fearless TV performance. [Side note to publicists: emails that contain quotes from Perez Hilton, Pitchfork or Stereogum will be deleted. While the contradictions between the quotes are humorous, their use for "cred" is about as worn out as "rollercoaster thrill-ride" Movie reviews and end up being counterintuitive to their intended purpose.]

Speaking of publicist emails, we love the uber-adjective and made-up genre name use in this one: It's here, and it doesn't disappoint! After releasing a teaser trailer last week, the Swedish calculatorcore masterminds in Meshuggah have unveiled the video for "Bleed" -- in all of its gory, uber-frightening glory. As previously reported, the clip was produced by Ian McFarland and Killswitch Productions. Directed, written and edited by McFarland and Mike Pecci, "Bleed" boasts a fittingly-cinematic horror flick tone, and some genuine scares. What the directors had to say about the video: "Working with Meshuggah was truly an honor for us. It's extremely cool to work with a band who is willing to allow the music and imagery to speak for itself and who does not insist on themselves being the prominent focus of the video. I think that takes real balls and I admire them as a group for doing so." watch it here

The Shoe Company Warped Tour 2008 Presented By The Villain in 1967 Cult Film "The President's Annalist" Who Now Overcharge for Slow iPhone Service has announced two new additions for a portion of this summer's trek. Matisyahu will join the tour for the July 9 (Atlanta), July 10 (Orlando), July 11 (Tampa) and the July 13 (Jacksonville) shows. Also look for Chiodos to perform a one-night-only show on July 18 in Detroit at Comerica Park.

Bob Dylan, the Raconteurs, the Roots, Gnarls Barkley and Spoon will headline the inaugural New American Music Festival on August 8 & 9 at SouthSide Works in Pittsburgh, PA. - more

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Josh Rouse Wants Your Cash
PR reports: Josh Rouse is set to release the third volume in his Bedroom Classics EP, series. With Bedroom Classics, Vol. 3, Josh continues to build upon the successful series of EPs that has allowed him to take adventurous leaps with his sound over the years.

The first Bedroom Classics EP (2001) was limited to 750 copies fast becoming a collector's item for his long time fans (currently going for well over $100 on Ebay). Bedroom Classics, Vol. 2 (2005) marked the launch of his own artist imprint and soon caught the ear of John Mayer, who praised it on his own personal blog, ultimately inviting Josh out to tour with him in the winter of 2007. This new installment marks another groundbreaking chapter, as it is truly self released; only available directly from Josh himself, off his newly launched membership based digital download store at www.joshrouse.com

Fans who gain membership access will automatically receive Josh's December 9th, 2007 concert at Shepherd's Bush Empire, as well as the bonus tracks from his KCRW.com Presents: "Guitar and Strings" EP with their copy of Bedroom Classics EP 3. - Membership will cost you between $30 and $100 bucks! more details here

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Thomas Dolby Live Release
PR reports: Thomas Dolby, looking like a character out of a steampunk novel, takes the stage in a giant rumpled overcoat and vintage aviator glasses. The pioneer of the synthpop and new wave movements, is ready to lead you through his unique world view full of submarines, mad scientists, and the North Pole.

On June 10th Dolby and Invisible Hands Music will release a deluxe live CD and DVD. Called The Sole Inhabitant, material for the discs was culled from Dolby's 2006 US tour of the same name. Previously released in Europe, the two-disc set will now be available to fans in the United States.

Dolby's set includes the powerful yet ethereal "Leipzig Is Calling," folds a sample of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech into "The Flat Earth," and puts a fresh face on popular favorites "Hyperactive" and "She Blinded Me With Science." On the DVD, the visuals along with Dolby's engaging and informative stage banter, give a rich interpretation of the narrative of each song. The DVD also gives greater insight into Dolby's artistry with a sit-down interview, a detailed explanation of his rig and a personal walk-through of how he creates a song.
- more on this story

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Sugababes, The Feeling and Gnarls Barkley For Secret Fest
PR reports: This year sees Vodafone Live Music come back with a bang as it kicks off this summer's music calendar with the first TBA gig in Edinburgh on June 1.

Taking the city by storm will be the Sugababes, The Feeling and Gnarls Barkley. For 2008 the TBA format has evolved; rather than small, secret venue gigs with just one artist, Vodafone TBA 2008 will reveal the location and line up for the multi artist mini "festival" in advance. - more on this story

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New Wedding Present Next Week
PR reports: Legendary UK act The Wedding Present will be releasing its first new full length in over three years on May 20. Titled El Rey, the album was recorded in early 2008 in Chicago by Steve Albini, marking the band's first record with the noted producer since 1991's renowned Seamonsters. Manifesto Records will be the U.S. record label.

Written while frontman David Gedge was living in Los Angeles, El Rey burns with West Coast sunlight; Hollywood seen through the eyes of a gritty British Northerner. Speaking about El Rey in MOJO Magazine recently, Gedge said: "I've been living in West Hollywood for the last year or so, and while I'm not going to claim that this is my 'L.A.' album, there are some references. I suppose the themes are lust, jealousy, betrayal, regret, obsession, super-heroes. the usual. We chose to record with Steve this time because the new songs were sounding very guitar-ry and quite dark. It's been good. As you'd imagine, really; Albini knows his stuff." - more on this story

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Material Girl Dethroned By Diamond
antiMusic reports: Neil Diamond's new album "Home Before Dark" debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart after selling 145,840 copies last week. Produced by Rick Rubin, the album is Neil's first chart topper in his 48-year career. Some speculate that an appearance on American Idol pushed him over the top, but a former Idol also debuted a new album last week and sold less than half of what his previous album had sold.

Toby Keith's new double "best of" collection sold 103,000 copies last week to claim the No. 2 spot. Last week's, No. 1 from Madonna dropped to No. 3 with a little more than 94,000 people opting for some "Hard Candy".

Then there is Clay Aiken and his second album of new material. Aiken's "On My Way Here" made a respectable No. 4 debut just barely beat out by Madonna. However, the 94,071 units sold is significantly less than his last album, the covers collection "A Thousand Different Ways," which sold over 205,000 copies in its first week of release and landed at No. 2. - more on this story

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Alice In Chains Begin Work on New CD
Blabbermouth reports: Alice In Chains is finally working on music for its first all-new studio effort since 1995's self-titled third album. Guitarist Jerry Cantrell confirmed that he, bassist Mike Inez, drummer Sean Kinney and new singer William DuVall have been writing songs for months, but told The Pulse of Radio they're not rushing to start recording.

"We've been working about the last four months, and there's a good bulk of music and a good body of work so far, and we're having fun, and you know, we're taking our time and trying to figure out where William fits in and where we need to step up, and I have all the confidence in the world in the guys," he said.

"The most important thing to me is that we're all together and, you know, it's been a tough and painful experience at times, but it's been very rewarding at the same time." - more on this story

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