ATN's Music News of the World: Peter Buck and Mark Eitzel

R.E.M.'S PETER BUCK COLLABORATES WITH MARK EITZELEven if he doesn't put up Snoop-like numbers, there's one artist who seems destined to make his mark next year. Former American Music Club crooner Mark Eitzel already has a full schedule of releases planned for '97: two solo albums for two different labels and a soundtrack for an independent movie for starters.The first solo release will be a still-untitled collaboration with R.E.M.'s Peter Buck that the duo will record later this month in Seattle. Buck, a fan of Eitzel's, called the singer out of the blue to suggest they get together. He flew out to San Francisco for a week during October to co-write 13 songs with Eitzel, and will produce the album.Eitzel's second solo record, slated for release "sometime in 1997" according to a source at his label, Warner Brothers, might also end up with some as-yet-unnamed extra star support courtesy of the Seattle supergroup (Buck is a member), Tuatara. Buck and Eitzel will show off some of the compositions on December 17 at the Crocodile (managed by Buck's wife), where you can also expect some "special guests" according to the source.Eitzel is also literally just wrapping the sessions for his other 1997 album, this one for indie Matador, on which he is joined by Sonic Youth drummer, Steve Shelley, Yo La Tengo's James McNew and Kid Congo Powers. According to a Matador source, the album will be half solo acoustic numbers and half "more rockin'" numbers with Eitzel's guests. Eitzel also recently wrote and recorded a mostly instrumental soundtrack to the indie film No Easy Way, although that album doesn't have a label yet.As if all this wasn't enough, Warner Brothers also has plans to re-issue three classic American Music Club albums in 1997 (although they haven't decided which ones yet), each one fattened-up with some previously unreleased tracks.RETURN OF THE WU TANG CLANAddicted To Noise staff writer Gil Kaufman reports: After setting the rap world on its ass with their first album, 1993's Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), and then splitting off to release a rash of solo albums and start their own clothing line, Wu Wear and chain of clothing stores, the Wu Tang Clan are ready to re-group and drop the second chapter in their bizarre rap story.Not surprising, given their prolific nature (five members released solo albums since 1993), the group -- which now numbers 10 thanks to the addition of rapper Cappuccino/Cappadonna -- are expecting their next, still-untitled opus to be a double-album, due sometime in late February.Together for the first time in several years, the Clan are currently holed up in the Wu Mansion in New Jersey working on tracks, but you can expect them to keep showing up on other people's albums for a while, including Method Man and Raekwon, who appear on the new Mobb Deep album and Ol' Dirty Bastard (who changed his name to Osiris for a minute following Tupac's murder) who lent a guest rap to the next Alkaholiks album, due in March.THE ROCK & RAP CONNECTIONIn what might be an exciting new trend in the diversification of hip-hop, several labels and artists traditionally associated with rap have announced plans to give rock a shot. In a recent interview with MTV, Dr. Dre said he plans to start an off-shoot of his new Aftermath label, called Ghetto Metal, to which he hopes to sign African-American hard rock bands.Def Jam, the label that brought you LL Cool J, is about to unleash their first ever rock band on the world. Dogma, a New York-based hard rock band will drop their debut on February 11.Before his incarceration, Death Row CEO, Marion "Suge" Knight had also expressed interest in signing some black rock bands, although, like all Death Row business, that is currently up in the air.Hopefully, these outings will have a better fate than the failed Priority (Ice Cube) Records stab at branching out into indie rock, which ended earlier this year with the shutting down of the rock division, leaving bands like the X Members, Magnapop, the Rugburns, Foreskin 500 and Congo Norvell in limbo.LOU BARLOW'S IMPLOSION EXPLOSIONLou Barlow's Folk Implosion, the studio combo he leads along with John Davis, are gearing up to release their first FI single since the unlikely hit "Natural One" from the KIDS soundtrack became a momentary radio and dance-floor staple earlier this year.The single, "Pole Position" (early March), will be the first of two tracks to prime Implosioniods for Dare to Be Surprised, which is slated for a late April release. This will mark FI's first full-length album for the San Francisco-based indie label, Communion Records, after a number of EP's, including the post-KIDS EP, Palm of My Hand.The album, which a source at Communion tells ATN was recorded "before, during and after" the hoopla surrounding KIDS, is a "mix of very catchy indie pop songs," none of which are exactly lo-fi, considering they were recorded on 24-track equipment. The source described some songs as having that same "moody dance sound" as some of the soundtrack work, not being able to stress enough how catchy the songs are. The band haven't yet decided if they will tour to support the effort.NEW DEPECHE MODEFollowing the various non-musical dramas surrounding lead singer Dave Gahan's struggles with substance abuse, the band Depeche Mode have gotten back to doing what it is they're better known for, making gloomy electronic music. In fact, their first single in four years, the provocatively-titled "Barrel of a Gun," will see the light of day in early February of 1997, to be followed by a still-untitled album in mid-April. The single was written by keyboardist/guitarist Martin Gore and produced by Bomb the Bass' Tim Simenon, who also manned the boards for the rest of the album, recorded on-and-off over the past year in London and New York . According to a source, the band, now down to its core three, Gore, singer Gahan and Andy Fletcher, do not plan to replace departed member Alan Wilder.HOVERCRAFT LANDINGThe mysterious trio Hovercraft will touch down with their first full-length album on February 11. The self-titled, five song effort (available on vinyl on January 21) from the artists known only by their shadowy pseudonyms, Campbell 2000 (guitar), Sadie 7 (bass) and Karl 3-30 (drums) is more of the drony ambient soundscapes audiences heard when the band debuted on Mike Watt's 1995 tour, which also featured the live debut of the Foo Fighters. If you remember, (and who doesn't?) the drummer for Hovercraft on that tour, for a while anyway, was none other than one of Seattle's finest in a bad wig. While he's no longer in the band, his...well, let's just say a close running partner of his still is. The CD, which clocks in at over 64 minutes, was produced by the band, who primed the pump earlier this year with a quirky, quarky 10"s on Seattle's Repellent Records. The scientific-sounding song titles include: "Quiet Room (44)," "Angular Momentum," "Halo Paridol," "Vagus Nerve" and "De-orbit Burn."ATN ALBUM OF THE MOMENT: DJ SHADOW'S "ENDTRODUCING"Since I first heard the mind-blowing "What Does Your Soul Look Like?" early this year, it's been obvious that DJ Shadow is the Man. Shadow is a record producer of Phil Spector-like proportions. His debut album Endtroducing, is the fulfillment of the promise shown with "What Does Your Soul Look Like?"Trip-hop? Hip hop? When music is this seductive/creative/innovative, who cares what it's called. DJ Shadow's music feels like swimming underwater off the coast of some tropical island. Like 3 A. M. at the coolest rave. Like falling into a kaleidoscope. Like tripping through a rose garden on acid. Like grooves so deep and hooks so catchy... Shadow is the Mozart of sampling. Drawing from recorded music Past, he has discovered the Future. Epic sonic landscapes. Emerging from, of all places, Davis, CA , recording for the ultra-hip MoWax label in London, Shadow's debut album is a thing of mystery and beauty. Is this the first new music of the '90s?OFF-THE-(ATN)-WIRE: Pavement songwriter/singer Scott Kannberg (AKA Spiral Stairs) married his longtime girlfriend, Chrissie Loader on Sat., Nov. 30. All the other members of Pavement were in attendance. No, the group did not perform at the reception...Phish took a two day break from touring while in Seattle to enter the studio with producer Steve Lillywhite. They jammed intensely for two days. Every note was caught on tape. Lillywhite will be reviewing the tapes, looking for sections of the jams could turn into songs for the follow-up to Billy Breathes...

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