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John Mellencamp Documentary
PR reports: John Mellencamp's music, the folks at BIO Channel (formerly known as A&E Biography) rightly declare, "defined a generation." Its new "Homeward Bound: John Mellencamp" documentary special debuts Thursday, December 11th at 9PM ET/8PM CT/10 PM PT and shows how Mellencamp's music developed out of his Indiana roots.

The 90-minute program visits Mellencamp's Seymour hometown, meeting the people who inspired his music and covering his early career high—and low—points. It features archival footage, personal photos and interviews with childhood friends, band members and other key people in his life. It also includes concert performances of several songs, including cuts from John's new album "Life Death Love and Freedom."

According to producer Anthony Uro, the documentary "really gives viewers an in-depth look at the John Mellencamp most people don't see, because it's not only about John the successful rock star. It also paints a very detailed picture of John's early life and career before he was famous, and the people, places and events that shaped him as a person and as an artist." - more on this story

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Ben Kweller Sets Release
PR reports: ATO Records is excited to announce the release of Ben Kweller's new record on February 3, 2009. The album is his fourth full-length and is called Changing Horses. It was produced by Kweller and recorded mostly in Austin, TX, where he and his family recently re-located.

The title is meaningful as it represents a sea change for the 27-year-old Texan-bred musician. Beginning with his first record, Sha Sha, released in 2002, Kweller's albums have always been stylistically restless, moving from indie rock to ballads to anti-folk to melodic chug rock, often from song to song. Changing Horses, on the other hand, is of one mind -- a full-blown, straight up country affair, brimming with immaculate pedal steel, twang and multi-part harmonies. It features his touring band -- Chris Morrissey on bass and vocals, and Mark Stepro on drums and vocals -- as well as the brilliant Kitt Kitterman on pedal steel. Like all of Kweller's work, the new album is filled with unforgettable melodies and deeply soulful lyrics that could only come from someone as sensitive to the human spirit as he is. - more on this story

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Equal Vision Bag Chiodos Guitarist
PR reports: Equal Vision Records is proud to welcome KING to its roster. The band - which features Chiodos' Jason Hale in a familiar role on guitar - is currently recording with Mark Michalik at Detroit's 37 Studios before their winter tour that kicks off December 13th in Toledo, OH. Regarding the tour, Hale promises "good music, good people, and good times."

Even after the success he's had with Chiodos, Hale explains that "KING is the lemon-lime Gatorade to my unquenchable thirst for metal." Hale has been playing metal since he was 16, so it seemed only natural to start a band when he met David Swan (vocals), Andrew Beal (guitar), Eugene Gill (bass), and Andrew Workman (drums). Although Chiodos' 2008 rigorous tour schedule hasn't permitted much time for Hale to devote to KING, the metal quintet will be releasing a full length in 2009.

"Because EVR is tight, duh," said Hale of the signing with Equal Vision. Label owner, Steve Reddy, echoed the sentiment stating, "Jason's positive attitude and dedication to music makes him one of the easiest guys to work with. We are beyond excited to have KING on the roster and to continue our relationship with him." - dates

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John Fogerty Plans Busy 2009 Starting With A New DVD
PR reports: 2009 is shaping up to be one of the most active years for John Fogerty in terms of ambitious new releases that are reflective of an ongoing creative streak for the iconic Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and Grammy award winner. He is working on both an album of new music as well as an ambitious concert documentary DVD. Both the new album and DVD will be issued this coming year; specific release dates for both are forthcoming.

John Fogerty – Comin' Down The Road is a DVD project that represents both the artist's music and his personal saga, a musical and personal celebration of an immense talent unbound. The film, produced by digital technology pioneer George Johnsen (Babylon 5, Star Trek Borg Invasion), uses Fogerty's June 24, 2008 concert at London's Royal Albert Hall as a point of departure. That performance, marking his return to the venue after having last performed there 37 years earlier, was the culmination of a lengthy European tour. The tribulations that befell the journey that took him from the first Albert Hall concert to this summer's return could not have been foreseen by the rock legend back in 1971. The issues that beset him over those years nearly rendered him unable to ever write another song.

The concert was filmed by director Ted Kenney (U2 3D) as a twelve camera HD shoot and highlights songs from throughout Fogerty's life in music. - more on this story

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Cemetery Of Scream Set Release
MMP reports: Cemetery Of Scream, one of the most intriguing bands on Polish atmospheric dark metal scene returns with a new, disturbing album, which will send cold shivers down your spine....

"Frozen Images" will appeal to all who love the moods known from Katatonia's or Paradise Lost's albums. Metal Mind Productions set the release day for 26th January 2009 in Europe and 10th March 2009 in USA (via MVD).

The band's new offering entitled "Frozen Images" constitutes a unique and innovative work, on which the new vocalist, Olaf Różański, leaves his ice-cold fingerprints. - more on this story

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The RZA To Release Afro Samurai: The Resurrection
PR reports: Wu Music Group, the new label ran by the administrative mind of Mitchell "Divine" Diggs and the creative force of Wu-Tang Clan's chief architect, "The RZA", will release their second album, Afro Samurai: The Resurrection, on January 27th, 2009.

The album is the soundtrack to season two of Spike TV's critically lauded animated television show and DVD featuring the voice of Samuel L Jackson and is musically produced entirely by Wu Tang Clan's The RZA.

The soundtrack features unlikely collaborations and guest spots from legendary recording artists such as Sly Stone, members of the Wu-Tang Clan, Kool G Rap, Rah Digga, and a whole cast of RZA's protégé's, including the late Ol' Dirty Bastard's son - Boy Jones. This highly anticipated release demonstrates RZA's incredible genius and ability to unite some of the finest voices in hip-hop together in one place. - more on this story

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Ralo Malo Releasing Digital EP
PR reports: Ralo Malo fans will receive an early Christmas present with the release of Hello Again, a digital-only EP on Fantasy Records which will be available exclusively at iTunes next Tuesday, December 16.

The five-song EP contains "Hello Again," the first single from the Lucky One album, which streets on March 3, 2009, along with a demo version of "So Beautiful," a studio version of which also appears on the new album. Included also are two recent live versions of songs from Malo's 2001 debut solo album Today: "Every Little Thing" and "I Said I Love You." Lastly, the digital EP features a newly recorded remake of a song from Malo's Mavericks years titled "In My Dreams."
- more on this story

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A Second Chance At Two Essential Albums
conqueroo reports: Chris Darrow may not be a household name- yet. But throughout the history of Southern California country-rock, folk, surf, psychedelic and world music, he has cast a welcome presence. His trail-blazing, country-rock-leaning pair of solo albums, Chris Darrow (1973) and Under My Own Disguise (1974), soon will be released by Everloving Records, the home of Inara George & Van Dyke Parks, Cornelius and Herman Dune .

The Darrow collection, titled Chris Darrow/Under My Own Disguise, will be available as a deluxe two-CD, two-LP (180 gram vinyl) with a 48-page 12" x 12" photo book. Street date is March 3, 2009. The music will also be available through digital retailers without all the fancy stuff.

The Chris Darrow story begins with Kaleidoscope, a late '60s L.A.-based band cited by Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page as his "favorite band of all time." Elektra Records founder Jac Holzman wrote in his book Follow the Music that the first Kaleidoscope album, Side Trips, is his favorite album of all time. Why this cult mania? Kaleidoscope was the first to blend country, rock, folk, blues, psychedelic and world music and have been called the first "world beat" band. They were also precursors to the Flying Burrito Brothers. Singer/songwriter/guitarist David Lindley was also a member.
- more on this story

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Sam Roberts Spring Tour
PR reports: The Sam Roberts Band has announced the details of the first leg of their Spring 2009 U.S. Tour.

Set to kick off February 18th, 2009 in New York City, the day after the stateside release of his new record, Love At The End Of The World (Rounder, 2/17), it will feature more shows and bigger venues than any of his previous tours – it's his most ambitious to date.

Dates to be announced, including an extensive West Coast leg, will keep the band on the road through mid-April. Additional dates will be announced soon.
- more on this story

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Rev Theory Playing Web Games
PR reports: Interscope artists Rev Theory have partnered with online music gaming platform Jam Legend, which has just left private beta and is now open to the public!

Rev Theory's track "Hell Yeah" will be available at launch, with current single "Light It Up" debuting next week. Both songs come from Rev Theory's major label debut Light It Up, which hit stores earlier this year.

Jam Legend is a free, browser-based gaming platform that simulates the thrill of rocking out to a sold out crowd, while enabling features never before available in console games such as Rock Band or Guitar Hero. CNet's Josh Lowensohn called it "just brilliant," and that experience is now available to players everywhere.
- more on this story

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Tony Lucca Inks with Rock Ridge
PR reports: Tony Lucca has inked a deal with the management arm of Rock Ridge Music. He joins Sister Hazel, Ernie Halter, Pat McGee and Andrew Hoover on the company's management roster.

Says Rock Ridge Music president Jason Spiewak: "I'm very proud of our new working relationship with Tony Lucca. Tony is a monster talent with a great new record to be promoted while he's on the road with Sara Bareilles. We are building a solid stable of creative, hard working touring acts on the management side of our business. Tony Lucca is a perfect fit for Rock Ridge and the way we like to do business."

Says Lucca about the partnership: "Jason and the rest of the folks at Rock Ridge get it. By 'it,' I mean they seem to really understand the needs of their artists, as well as the demands of the industry, and how to bridge the two in a seemingly effortless fashion. I've had the pleasure of working with them in the past and am eager to get back at it. I know things are happening when they call me."
- more on this story

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. UB40 Greatest Hits
Putting UB40's Greatest Hits on is a trip down memory lane where tracks like "Red, Red Wine" could refer to experiences as rich and rare as Chateau Haut Brion or to the morning-after, Tylenol-chewing demands of the less illustrious dego red. (4.5 stars) - Read the full UB40 Greatest Hits review

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