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 411mania » Music » Columns

Sunday Morning Coming Down News Report – 08.08.10
Posted by Michael Melchor on 08.08.2010

The views and opinions expressed herein are those solely of the author and may not necessarily reflect those of the rest of the human race.

Times New Roman, you know the type. Callin' me Public Enemy, but Don't Believe The Hype. Welcome back to another week of fun, frolic, and musical madness. Please extinguish all smoking materials and make sure your trays are in their upright position. In the event of a crash, bend down and kiss your ass goodbye, because the pilot will have already bailed out.

Since we're being silly, I've decided to invite a very special guest host to the party this week. Some of you may know him as the man who…kept the bloodline alive. At least until Herr Starr got a hold of him. Without any further adieu, may I introduce to you…the 112th Allfather of the Grail, the most powerful secret organization on the planet...ladies and gentlemen, Allfather D'Aronique!

Blessed art thou as well, Allfather. Glad to have you aboard. Let's see what's going on this week, shall we?

Oh, You Were Finished! Well, Allow Me To Retort!

You know, Mail Call just doesn't cut it any more. With Facebook, Twitter, and certainly our own Comments section, feedback comes from anywhere but e-mail any more.

Now then, Michael L made a good point last week about the Iron Maiden vs. Osbourne(s) segment:

Maiden has had a strange relationship with the US crowd over the last decade. In 2003, they did a somewhat shortened version of their Give Em Ed tour (only about 90 minutes, minus 3-4 songs from what they had been doing in Europe), and they barely touched the US for the subsequent Dance of Death tour. Given that the US fans tend to gravitate towards the hits, rather than the newer stuff, I would have thought they'd do their own tour in 2005, when they were doing all early day's material, but they went for Ozzfest, most likely to take advantage of a bigger crowd. I was fortunate enough to be at one of the shows when Ozzy was out sick, and got to see IM do an extended set, rather than the 50-55 minutes or so they had bee doing with Ozzfest.

BTW, they were not thrown off the bill early, the San Bernadino show was already scheduled to be their last.

I think both sides were in the wrong, but Sharon was even more so, as she screwed with the band's set, which I'm sure disappointed many of the fans who had come there to see IM. Diatribes are one thing, but sabotaging a performance takes it to the next level.

Duly noted and thank you for the correction. I thought the San Bernardino show antics were Sharon's cute little way of showing them the door, but such is not the case. And I have to give him another point that, yeah, messing with someone's performance to that level is uncalled for, really. It shouldn't have come to that at all, but welcome to Sharon's world.

Also, thanks to Commie, Adam Hill, and Dave for the good word on Therapy?. Dave, in particular checked in with a review of Therapy?'s set at Sonisphere. He has my eternal envy, just like this guy...

Okay, This Is Boring – What Else Is There To Read?

David Hayter went to Sonisphere last weekend. He got to see Therapy?'s Troublegum performed in its entirety. He gave it high marks. Lucky bastard.

Hook up with us on Facebook! You can even find me on there if you feel so inclined...

…and don't forget Twitter!
The whole damn site!
...and, oh yeah, me again!

All The News That's Fit To Post

  • I originally had a bit about the Beach Boys vs. Katy Perry in here - until I found out it was all a misunderstanding (kinda?) and Mike Love has stated they have no intention of suing Perry over a single line, anyway, so this "news story" just became non-news.

    Much more serious and breaking news is Sum 41's Deryck Whibley sitting in a hospital after getting the "Shawn Michaels" treatment in Japan. (And, of course, our Comments section is its usual classy bunch of jackholes.) I'm no Sum 41 fan (although I'll admit to digging the "Pain For Pleasure" stuff every now and again), but this isn't really something I would wish on very many people, so Whibley has my best wishes for a speedy recovery and that Japanese police find the guys that did this and lock some asses up.

  • In brighter news, Avenged Sevenfold tops the Billboard 200 for the first time ever. I almost hate to wonder how much of this had to do with their evolution as one of the best hard rock/metal bands around and how much had to do with the morbid curiosity of the passing of "The Rev".

    Let's take that statement in order. Don't even front and try calling them a "poser" band or any of that crap. They simply happened to break through the mainstream and make good for themselves. Much of that happened when M Shadows was told by a doctor to either stop screaming or lose his voice for good and bring the band to an end. A7X switched up their sound around their singer to a more classic metal sound with City Of Evil and the rest is history and they've been steadily better ever since.

    But then it all threatened to go away when James Sullivan passed away. And, sadly enough, that was the most the mainstream press ever had to say about this band. The metal community wondered how they would carry on, but then the best drummer in the business stepped in because he was "The Rev's" hero. Lo and behold, a fairytale ending sprung from certain tragedy - and now they have the #1 to prove it.

    Bassist Johnny Christ told MTV News:

    I got the call from my manager last night," Christ said. "Unfortunately,Matt [Sanders, better known as M. Shadows] and Zack [a.k.a. Zacky Vengeance] were doing press in L.A., but me and Brian [a.k.a. Synyster Gates] went out to celebrate and had some dinner together. It was pretty fun. It was more about the drinks. We were just drinking, having a good time. We should have been being good boys and not drinking last night, but it's the first time we're on the top of the Billboard, and that only happens once. We had to do something.

    Good for him. And good for them, really. "The Rev" would have been proud.

  • Word is that A Perfect Circle is getting together again. Modern medicine has now achieved miracles in severely shortening the lifespan of band breakups. Soon, we'll be able to skip all the bad blood (not to mention the shitty VH1 "Behind The Music" special) and let the money-making reunion tour happen the very next day!

    Maybe Maynard was just burned out on it when he said he was ending it...? Wasn't his band to end (*coughBillyHowerdelcough*) but be that as it may, I'm still excited. Their last album had one of my favorite covers ever ("The Nurse Who Loved Me"), and the record before wasn't too shabby by a damn sight. This should be worth keeping an eye on.

    You know, APC did put out the religious condemnation "Judith" that actually became a pretty big hit... Allfather, what do you think about A Perfect Circle possibly coming back?

    Umm...you look like you're busy at the moment. I'll check back in a bit.

  • Something interesting I came across this week. There's been some rumor about this, but now that Slayer's Tom Araya admits to wanting to wind down to The Aquarian Weekly, I wonder if there's more:

    The Aquarian Weekly: You've brought it up before, that you may see yourself getting to a point where you're too old for this shit. Would you even know how to wind down Slayer if you could? Are you comfortable recuperating? Is it nice having Thanksgiving at home and not having to play the next night?

    Araya: (laughs) Yeah, that's nice. That's nice being home. Dude, in the 30 years that I've been doing this, I've been married 15 years, and of those 15 years, I think I've spent maybe a total of 5 years with my family. The rest of the time is spent out on the road. If I'm not home, they're either with me or they're not. You get to that point. When I come home, I enjoy my time at home, because it's not something I get to do very often. I like it. Believe [me], it would not be an issue to wind down (laughs). When you've been going for 200 percent for 30 years, stopping and smelling the roses is not a problem. That's something I look forward to every time I come home.

    --and, oh yeah, thanks for telling me, Dave:

    MM: Now, taking in to account what happened with Tom - even though the band's obviously overcome that, has there been any talk about how much longer the band will carry on, or is it just a matter of, "we're having too much fun doing what we're doing to worry about all that right now"?

    DL: Yeah, that's basically it. We're having a blast. We just have to do what we've been wanting to do since Tom has healed.

    That interview*...aside, I'd like to stomp the rumor mill right now.

    Do I think that the band is in conflict about whether or not it's wrapping it up soon? No. Araya sounds like, "hey, yeah, that would be a cool idea…eventually." Slayer is still going relatively strong right now; hell, they're on THE biggest metal tour of the YEAR as I type this. It sounds, to me, like Tom is thinking about it, while Dave is just looking to keep busy, no matter how he has to do it. Hell, he told me he was putting together another band entirely while Tom was healing up – not to split or anything, but just to keep busy.

    Dave, I get the impression, likes to work. Constantly. Meanwhile, Araya is liking the idea of being home more. There won't be any big blow-up over it; once it happens (be it tomorrow, which I doubt, or years off from now), Tom will get some much needed R&R and Dave will keep on plugging.

    * - There's a lot more I could say about that interview, but I'm not. If you read it beginning to end, you probably know I don't have to.

  • I guess, since this is Lollapalooza weekend and all, that we should include some news about one of the headliners...

    Courtesy of my pal Lindsey at World Of Meh comes word of a new Soundgarden album – the first record to be bundled with a video game – or at least with Guitar Hero.

    Now, don't get all excited quite yet. Telephantasm isn't a new album. In fact, there's only one new song on it – "Black Rain", which is more of a finished version of an old demo. Other than that, Telephantasm is basically a remix of A-Sides with a bunch more stuff thrown in:

    Single CD edition:

    1. Hunted Down
    2. Hands All Over
    3. Outshined
    4. Rusty Cage
    5. Birth Ritual
    6. Black Hole Sun
    7. Spoonman
    8. My Wave
    9. Fell On Black Days
    10. Burden In My Hand
    11. Blow Up The Outside World
    12. Black Rain (Previously Unreleased)

    2 CD/Limited Edition DVD:

    Disc One

    1. All Your Lies
    2. Hunted Down
    3. Fopp
    4. Beyond The Wheel
    5. Flower (BBC Session) *
    6. Hands All Over
    7. Big Dumb Sex
    8. Get On The Snake (Live)
    9. Room A Thousand Years Wide (Single Version) *
    10. Rusty Cage
    11. Outshined
    12. Slaves & Bulldozers

    Disc Two

    1. Jesus Christ Pose (Live)
    2. Birth Ritual
    3. My Wave
    4. Superunknown
    5. Spoonman
    6. Black Hole Sun
    7. Fell On Black Days (Video Version)
    8. Burden In My Hand
    9. Dusty
    10. Pretty Noose (Live on SNL) *
    11. Blow Up The Outside World (MTV Live ‘N' Loud) *
    12. Black Rain *

    (* - previously unreleased on CD)


    1. Flower
    2. Hands All Over ^
    3. Loud Love ^
    4. Jesus Christ Pose- (Original Version)
    5. Outshined
    6. Rusty Cage
    7. My Wave ^
    8. Spoonman
    9. The Day I Tried To Live (Uncensored) ^
    10. Black Hole Sun ^
    11. Fell On Black Days ^
    12. Pretty Noose (Uncensored)
    13. Burden In My Hand
    14. Blow Up The Outside World (Uncensored)


    1. Spoonman (Mash-up Version)
    2. The Day I Tried To Live (European Version)
    3. Superunknown ^
    4. Pretty Noose (International Version)
    5. Pretty Noose (Alternate Ending)
    6. Blow Up The Outside World (Censored)

    (All Videos Previously Unreleased Except ^)

    The album will be included with the next "Guitar Hero" game, with all the songs downloadable and playable after it's out. If you want Telephantasm without the game, you'll have to wait a week or three, but it will be available then.

    This is the sort of thing that could totally piss people off, but…I get it. It's not a bad marketing idea at all, really - give those that need one a history lesson and those that don't a reason to get excited about the eventual new album. Besides, they haven't had a whole lot of time to write and record that new record, anyway. Dunno if I'll get the game, but I'll certainly go for the deluxe edition package a few weeks after once it's out on its own.

    Allfather, your thoughts on Telephantasm?

    Wow. You know, that does sound like a good idea right now...

  • Metal Assault (by way of Blabbity-Blab recently caught up with Queensryche's Geoff Tate about the band's cabaret show—

    Wait, what? Did I miss something? You mean, like, Liza Minelli used to sing about? Just this side of burlesque?

    How the hell does stuff like Operation Mindcrime or the last one, American Soldier - pretty heavy subject matter, overall – become light and "fun" enough to translate in to this? Certainly doesn't hurt the "they're a washed-up, 90s one-hit-wonder" argument, although anyone who knows their music knows Queensryche are SO much better than that.

    Maybe this focuses on the hits and some of the lighter stuff (like "Last Time In Paris")? I'll admit to not knowing enough about this, but it certainly sounds like a different idea. Maybe different enough to work. It's being filmed for a DVD release, so maybe I'll have to give it a look...

    ...or not. You know, I don't know if I can get behind this--no pun intended, I mean, but, really, this--

    I'm sorry, Allfather? Did you say something?

    Allfather, really...did you see that picture? Not the way I would like to see Queensryche live, honestly. Do you not agree?

    Thank you, sir. I am honored. Can I take that to mean you'll wait until Geoff Tate gets some clothes back on to go see him live, too?

  • And if you thought THAT was weird...

    NME gets the last word this week with news on Dr. Dre's next album. No, not that silly Detox thing that everyone really wants to hear despite the fact it's turning in to Hip-Hop's version of Chinese Democracy, I'm talking about his instrumental project about the solar system.

    No, seriously:

    "An instrumental album is something I've been wanting to do for a long time," Dr. Dre told Vibe.com. "I have the ideas for it. I want to call it The Planets. I don't even know if I should be saying this, but fuck it. It's just my interpretation of what each planet sounds like."

    He added: "I've been studying the planets and learning the personalities of each planet. I've been doing this for about two years now just in my spare time, so to speak. I wanna do it in surround sound. It'll have to be in surround sound for Saturn to work."

    Of course it'll have to be in surround sound for Saturn to work. The rings and all. Don't you know that? Although, will Mars be more gangsta than Jupiter, I wonder, or does Pluto take that trophy home?

    Awright, enough. All horseshit aside – are you for real kidding me?? This man changed the face of Hip-Hop three times. Now he's going to try that same feat again by releasing an instrumental album inspired by the solar system?!

    Dude, Dre...between you and me...no one wants to hear some wack, Carl Sagan-sounding bullshit from the guy that helped give us NWA, Snoop Dogg, AND Eminem. I get that this is a hobby, but that's also where it should stay. Make it for your friends or something and please don't torture the general public with this.

    Allfather, what's your take on all this?

    Allfather, please...with all due respect--

    I...well, there you have it. Not much I can add to that.

    Great. This is gonna be one hell of a mess to clean up, here.

    I Like It, I Love It

    Sorry, no cool unknown bands or videos you may not have known about this week. The "It" in question, this time, is Twitter.

    Oddly enough, it started with a statement from Irving Azoff. Yes, the CEO of LiveNation. Struck me funny, because it was a rather ignorant statement made with no support, no facts to back it up, nothing like that:

    so if you want ticket prices to go down stop stealing music.

    Now, Azoff is, of course, superior to us paying customer-types and knows what's good for us just like the rest of the RIAA. This sort of thing should go unquestioned, right? Because he knows best.

    Not so fast. I realized that the beautiful thing about Twitter is that you can talk to celebrities and executives directly. Whether or not they'll hear you or give a damn is another matter; that didn't stop me from opening fire on Lindsay Lohan. I'm sure she didn't read it or care if she did, but that's almost immaterial. The fact is, I got to put out in public how I felt about her idiotic ramblings, and I felt a lot better for it.

    So, when this came up from Azoff, I remembered that and, deciding this was entirely too ignorant and arrogant a statement to just let go, I did it again :

    @irvingazoff Please explain the correlation between ticket prices and "stealing music".

    Once again, no answer was expected, really. Who the hell am I to Irving Azoff, in the grand scheme of things, right?

    I did get an answer, though – just not from Azoff:

    @MMelchor @irvingazoff won't answer that, but I will. In theory, if bands sold more music, they would charge less for concerts. In theory.

    "visionintl" is actually Vision International, a booking company owned by one Armand Sadlier. Figure this guy has to know a little something about booking; according to his website, he booked Dave Matthews on his first tour.

    Hell, I was just happy someone was willing to engage the discussion. So, engage I did:

    @visionintl Thank you for response (by way of @irvingazoff ?), but, "in theory"...is that with record label support or in general?

    Now, the aim here was to try and make some sense of Azoff's statement. How do ticket prices and CD prices relate? They're almost separate industries under the same umbrella! I wanted an explanation to see how Azoff's theory could fly. I'm not justifying "stealing music" at all, but I've seen some pretty shifty practices and theories to get it to stop, and that's what this sounded like. I either wanted a hole punched in it or some sort of revelation as to how this all ties together from someone who would know first hand.

    I talked with Marc (with a C) about this because he's someone who would know from the other side of the coin. And I want to thank him for smacking me in the head with a brick and putting all of this in perspective.

    We'll look at the pot calling the kettle black in a second. First - and most important - let's discuss the entire purpose of touring. Leaving the megastar artists out of this (because their shows seem to be the biggest opportunity for gouging), why does any artist tour? Think about it for a second.

    Go ahead. Go get a drink, stretch your legs, use the bathroom a minute. I'm not going anywhere.



    Got it yet? Most artists, save for a handful, tour to promote a new record they've just released. How. In the HELL. Did it get turned around. That the record promotes the tour? Wait, it didn't? According to Irving Azoff and, apparently, Armand Sadlier, it did.

    Now we get to the artists that aren't. You know, the ones responsible for these exhorbitant prices that have brought the concert industry to a slow crawl this summer. (I'm sure that's what Azoff is so pissed about, but that doesn't excuse his idiocy.) Take in to consideration for a moment that ticket prices are out of fucking control as it is. The Eagles - and, by extension, the people that paid $100+ to see their reunion tour - started a trend that can't be backed off from now. Personally, I refuse to pay triple-digits to see ANYbody live. The best show I ever saw live and, I'm pretty convinced, will ever see live was Prince. With minimal lighting or stage setup, the man and his band put on one hell of a show - and, for that privilege to see it, I paid an astronomical...$76. That's it. That in mind, I fail to see how some artists repeatedly charge over the $100 mark - let alone two- and three-hundred - to see them perform the same kind of show they could do in a small club as easily as a stadium.

    Oh, what's that? You want to discuss huge stage shows that are "worth that price"? Okay, let's look at U2 and their massive-ass set for their current tour. They did the same kind of show touring behind Achtung Baby (that's right, they were promoting a record, too!) for about $25. So, what's the excuse for multiplying that times ten again?

    All that leads us to the aforementioned pot-kettle correlation. There are those that are looking to charge fair prices, but are now being victimized by their own ticket prices! Bruce Springsteen got in to a fight with TicketBastard because of it, and the company is still mired in a Canadian class-action lawsuit for auctioning off tickets to the Smashing Pumpkins for nearly eight times their face value on a "secondary site" that TicketBastard owns. (The exact process can be detailed here.)

    Now, you want the real kick in the balls? Both of the above incidents - and many more - happened on Irving Azoff's watch.

    So, after not getting any further answer from Sadlier (and none from Azoff, but that was to be expected), I had to find an answer to my original question myself (sorry it took a minute there): there is no correlation between higher ticket prices and "stealing music". The ignorant, arrogant statement from Azoff is just that - and it had no support, no facts to back it up, nothing like that because it's impossible to do.

    Then Azoff has the gall to throw out another gem:

    What I love about Twitter is that so called journalists no longer get the last word.

    Are you sure about that, Irving? Because I still have yet to receive a response. And I don't think I ever will, because it's not like you give enough of a shit about me or the rest of the paying public to give us a real answer or address any issues of fairness (or lack thereof) in regards to the stranglehold you have on the touring industry.

    I would leave this there, but one of the best things I came across in looking in to this came from...our very own Mitch Michaels about a month ago - and it deserves, in light of all of this, to be read one more time:

    "I've seen every Tom Petty show near me since 1999 (since I was old enough to drive, pretty much). I look forward to the itinerary every year. My first show, we drove 6 hours just to get to Pittsburgh. Now, thankfully, I live an hour south of DC.

    That said, 2010 - I won't be there. Spending $320+ for a pair of tickets to a concert is something I just won't do. It's not that I don't HAVE the money, it's just that a line needs to be drawn somewhere.

    I love Tom, but I've seen the show a ton of times. Maybe when it's been 4-5 years since I've seen him instead of two, it'll look like a better deal.

    As it stands - I just won't spend that type of money for what is bare minimum courtesy and comfort at a venue. And seriously, shame on everybody who keeps selling out events (not for Tom, but for everybody) at these prices (not to mention readily paying scalper prices) for letting it get up so high.

    This country once killed a bunch of Brits because they wanted to tax our tea. Now we fill up with gas for $2.70 a gallon every week and pay $120 cable bills and don't think twice it's alright.

    And let me clarify - it's not Tom Petty's fault. It's everybody's fault.

    Cause Live Nation decided to get a little more, and the venue decided to get a little and the beer guy decided to get a little more and the parking guys decided to get a little more and, yes, Tom decided to get a little more and so we wind up paying a LOT more on our end.

    And how did it get to $325? Because everyone else last year said, $300? Why not! Put it on my charge card and I'll declare f'ing bankruptcy before it's time to buy the Christmas gifts."

    Happy Trails

    Well, it's been fun, kids. Be back in seven days when...I've no clue what I'm gonna do. But I'll be here. Hopefully, you will, too.

    L8. Thanks again for reading.

    For more interesting reading, click here. And/or here, for that matter.


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