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Full Report for 06/24/2009

Soundgarden Reunion On Tap?
exclaim.ca reports: Legendary grungers Soundgarden mostly reunited for a one-off show at Seattle's Crocodile Café. Three-quarters of the band were there, minus their leader Chris Cornell.

But now there's real reason to get your flannels in a knot: the rumor mill continues to spin that Cornell will be joining his buds for a full-on reunion.

In a recent interview with Kerrang! [via TwentyFourBit], Brent Smith of the band Shinedown dropped hints that he's heard the news, saying, "There's talk of a reuniting of Soundgarden in the States soon. I know actually someone specific who told me that, who is actually specifically in their organization. Kinda told me that they're talking about it." - Another source says it's happening too

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Blink-182 and Weezer Head Up Free Music Festival
Billboard reports: After months of speculation about the fate of the 2009 Virgin Mobile Festival, organizers have made an announcement that should please music fans who've felt the economic pinch of the recession: this year's event is free.

With headliners Weezer and Blink-182, organizers say 35,000 free tickets will be given away to the newly branded Virgin Mobile FreeFest, to be held Aug. 30 at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md.

Other acts scheduled to perform on the festival's two main stages and dance tent include Franz Ferdinand, Public Enemy, Jet, the National, Girl Talk, the Bravery, the Hold Steady, Taking Back Sunday - and more

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Hit Songwriter Accused of Craigslist Rapes- Wilco Guitarist Overdosed- Sunny Day Real Estate Reunion- KISSmart- Cowboy Members Signed Metal Record Deal and more
antiMusic reports: The songwriter and director behind 'You Light Up My Life' has been indicted on charges of raping or sexually assaulting women who answered audition ads on Craigslist. Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau says nine of the 11 victims answered an ad seeking women to audition for acting rolesmore

Authorities say former Wilco guitarist Jay Bennett died of an overdose of the pain killer, and that they're investigating his death as an accident.more

Pioneering Seattle rock band Sunny Day Real Estate will return to the road with its four original members this fall and will reissue its first two Sub Pop albums on Sept. 15.more

Gene Simmons has confirmed that a deal is in the works with Wal-Mart that will result in an "entire section" of the giant retailer's stores across the country (apparently dubbed "KISS Korner") being dedicated to KISS. Maybe they will be selling these?

After cancelling a number of recent festival and tour shows, Thin Lizzy have been forced to drop out of their support slot with AC/DC on their three UK tour dates.more

NFL offensive linemen bang heads all the time. A trio of Dallas Cowboys linemen are now professional head-bangers, too. Leonard Davis, Marc Colombo and Cory Procter have signed a recording contract as part of a heavy metal band called Free Reign. more

He's made documentary films about the Sex Pistols and Joe Strummer. Now director Julien Temple wants to do a full-length feature on the Kinks, according to the band's former front-man Ray Davies.more

The latest episode of Talking Rock, the sister podcast of the #1 metal podcast, Talking Metal, contains an interview host Mark Strigl conducted with singer, actress, model, and wrestler Christy Hemme. Topics include Christy's history as well as new music from her band Hemme. The podcast is available at www.talkingrockpodcast.com as well as on iTunes.

R.E.M. has announced a new two-disc set, Live From The Olympia, due out in October. The release collects songs from the band's five-night "working rehearsals" during the making of Acceleratemore

Led Zeppelin frontman Robert Plant donated a signed acoustic guitar to the Worcester and District branch of the Parkinson's Disease Society (PDS). The guitar was auctioned during a fundraising dinnermore

Counting Crows are planning a collaborative summer tour, dubbed the "Saturday Night Rebel Rockers Traveling Circus and Medicine Show," with Augustana and Michael Franti & Spearhead on board.more

Arctic Monkeys have announced a string of US club shows to coincide with the release of their upcoming third album 'Humbug' . The dates will kick off on August 1 at All Points West in New Jersey, and will feature club shows in New York, Boston and Chicago, as well as festival appearances at Osheaga and Lollapalooza.more

According to a posting on the Van Halen News Desk web site, the Guitar Hero: Van Halen video game will be made available in November/December. An exact release date has not yet been announced.more

Razorcake Records has announced another chapter in their Razorcake Sister Series, this one featuring simultaneous 7" releases from The Arrivals and Grabass Charlestons. The two records feature four new songs from each band — three originals and one cover of the other artistmore

Children Of Bodom will embark on their second North American tour this fall. The Black Dahlia Murder and Skeletonwitch are confirmed for a portion of the trek, with additional support acts yet to be announced.more

Former Megadeth guitarist Jeff Young has released "Always Remember Me",his "haunting tribute" to the late Jeff Buckley via MySpace. more

Members of Atlanta's the Black Lips and Montreal's The King Khan and BBQ Show (featuring Mark Sultan and Khan of King Khan and the Shrines) have formed a new act dubbed the Almighty Defenders. The six-member group will release their self-titled debut on September 22nd via Vice Records.more

Soilent Green and Goatwhore frontman Ben Falgoust has joined the line-up of New Orleans thrash/metal band Suicide War, which also features drummer Craig Nunenmacher (Black Label Society, ex-Crowbar).more

Entombed will NOT perform at U.K.'s Damnation Festival — set to take place Saturday, October 24 at Leeds University Union — despite the fact that the band's participation in the event was announced on the festival's web site.more -

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Deftones Update Fans on Chi's Condition and New Album Progress
Metal Underground reports: The Deftones issued an update on bassist Chi Cheng's condition (we was in a coma following a car accident last Nov.) as well as their progress in the studio. Here's the update from the band:

"First and foremost, we are all still praying and hoping for our brother's and bandmate's recovery. He continues to get hospital care, but often it feels as if we're no closer to knowing what is ultimately going to happen to him as he continues to fight off infections as part of an ongoing battle with his condition. We trust all of you have been following his progress at One Love For Chi; we have as well. Whenever we have significant information regarding his condition, we will share it with all of you. In the meantime, we're working on getting a benefit show together for Chi in Los Angeles this fall; details will follow very soon. Let's all continue to channel positive energy into the universe for Chi's recovery.

"There has been a lot of speculation lately about what is going on with the record: Eros for one, and Chi's parts, and this new record that we are currently tracking. The songs recorded for Eros are very special to us as they are the latest with Chi (and we certainly hope not the last); they have history and significant meaning to us. However, as we neared completion on Eros, we realized that this record doesn't best encompass and represent who we are currently as people and as musicians. And although those songs will see the light of day at some point, we collectively made the decision that we needed to take a new approach, and with Chi's condition heavy on our minds while doing so. We needed to return to the studio to do what we felt was right artistically. Our inspiration and unity as a band is stronger than it has ever been before and we needed to channel that energy into our music, and deliver to our fans what you rightly deserve: the best Deftones record that we can make. - more on this story

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The Mars Volta Members Shoot Down At The Drive-In Reunion
Punknews.org reports: The Mars Volta have commented further on reunion rumors sparked by a reconciliation with their former At The Drive-In bandmates. Speaking to Gigwise at Mercury Records HQ in West London, Omar Rodríguez-López and Cedric Bixler-Zavala said they're happy to reconnect with their former bandmates but rumors of reunions are unlikely to come true:

"(The reunion rumors surfaced when) we took time to bury the hatchet with the other members. There had been a lot of ---- talk, at least on my behalf, and I had stuff that I wanted to say. I wanted to be friends with the guys again. (A reunion) couldn't happen any time soon because we have so much Mars Volta material.

"We're smart enough to never say never as you don't know how life is going to happen. It's like your first girlfriend, you learned amazing things together, but do you really want to open that can of worms?" - more on this story

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Tool, Linkin Park, Alice In Chains and More Plan Epic Gig
PR reports: Epicenter '09: "So Cal's Rock Explosion" will debut Saturday, August 22 at Fairplex in Pomona with Tool, Linkin Park, Alice In Chains, Wolfmother, Atmosphere, Hollywood Undead, Atreyu, Street Sweeper Social Club, Aesop Rock, Sonny and others TBA.

The annual music festival is presented by Right Arm Entertainment (creators of Ohio's successful Rock on the Range annual festival) and will feature 12 acts throughout the day on multiple stages, with music set to kick off at 12 Noon.

"Talk about a killer lineup," says Linkin Park co-frontman Chester Bennington. "Tool, Alice In Chains, Wolfmother--if we weren't performing, we'd come just to see all the bands. This is gonna be our only North American gig all year and we promise to make it a show to remember."
- more on this story

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To Live Is To Die: The Life And Death Of Metallica's Cliff Burton
HeadbangerNYC.com reports: Metallica is currently selling "To Live Is To Die: The Life And Death Of Metallica's Cliff Burton", the first-ever Burton biography, via the band's official web site.

Written by U.K.-based author Joel McIver and published by Jawbone Press, the book includes a foreword by Cliff's close friend in METALLICA, Kirk Hammett.

Other interviewees who spoke to McIver for this book, many for the first time on the public record, include Cliff's bass teacher Steve Doherty; EXODUS founder Gary Holt; Metal Blade label founder Brian Slagel;Cliff's first guitar tech Chuck Martin; METALLICA's first fanclub manager K.J. Doughton; "Ride The Lightning" and "Master Of Puppets" producer Flemming Rasmussen; the last reporter to interview Cliff, Jörgen Holmstedt; roadie and ex-Metal Church guitarist John Marshall, who was also in the bus crash which ki11ed Burton; Lennart Wennberg, the photographer at the scene of the crash; and Cliff's girlfriend for the last year of his life, Corinne Lynn. - http://HeadbangerNYC.com

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Silversun Pickups, Manchester Orchestra and Cage the Elephant Doing North America
Filter reports: While Silversun Pickups' "Panic Switch" hit #1 on Billboard's Hot Modern Rock Songs chart in the U.S. last week, the band is enjoying their success from abroad.

The quartet is currently touring Europe in support of sophomore LP, Swoon (Dangerbird Records) but will return to the States in August for a round of headline shows and festival appearances. SSPU will receive support from Manchester Orchestra and Cage the Elephant, who will also join the band for their Canadian dates.

Most recently, MTV has added "Panic Switch" into rotation, joining sister stations MTV2 and mtvU. Meanwhile, fan favorite MTV "Unplugged" will make a triumphant return this summer, offering a series of monthly exclusive performances on MTV.com; Silversun Pickups' performance will go live in July.
- more on this story

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Rob Thomas Hitting The Road
PR reports: Rob Thomas has announced dates for his full-scale tour of North America in support of his new release "cradlesong" and companion DVD "Live at Red Rocks."

The two-month itinerary is slated to kick off on September 23rd at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida and end with a multi-night stand at the famed Beacon Theater in New York beginning on November 12th. The tour will include special guests One Republic and Carolina Liar.

The new tour, dubbed "cradlesong tour '09," is Thomas's second full-fledged solo tour and the first in support of his new Emblem/Atlantic Records release "cradlesong" which hits stores and digital retailers nationwide on June 30th. "cradlesong" is the follow-up to Thomas's record-setting solo album "…Something to Be" which debuted at #1 on the Billboard chart and marked the first time a male artist from a rock or pop group debuted at #1 with his first solo album. - more on this story

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DragonForce Tour
RR reports: DragonForce will be back to administer another 'Ultra Beatdown' upon American venues. The band will embark on a month-long, headlining tour this Fall.

The tour kicks off on September 18 in Hollywood and runs through October 11 in Philadelphia. This will probably be the band's final US tour in support of their most recent album, Ultra Beatdown.

Sonata Arctica, as well as DragonForce labelmates Taking Dawn, will serve as support. The band's latest power-riff fueled opus, Ultra Beatdown, was unleashed upon the world last August
- more on this story

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The Feelies Revisited
PR reports: Bar/None Records is proud to re-release two classic albums by the Feelies, that critically acclaimed crew of hyperactive alt rockers from Haledon, New Jersey that had such a powerful influence on the sound of indie music 1980s and beyond.

Their debut release Crazy Rhythms is a masterwork of perfectly honed minimalist rock that leaps and darts into the corners of the listener's consciousness, a true sonic tour de force that Rolling Stone deemed one of the "100 Best Albums of the 1980s." Fans of the Velvet Underground, Wire and Brian Eno's early solo work will surely appreciate the "forces at work" (to quote a song title!) on this masterpiece.

Their follow-up recording, The Good Earth, came some six years later co-produced by Feelies' co-regents Glenn Mercer and Bill Million with REM's Peter Buck (a Feelies admirer since his days as a record store clerk). The Good Earth was an early release on Coyote Records, the label founded and run Steve Fallon, also the original owner of famed Hoboken indie roc mecca, Maxwell's. This album introduced the line-up that continues to this day. - more on this story

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