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March 17, 2006


Stereolab's Tim Gane talks to the New York Daily News.

"People really associate themselves with us," he says. In the age of Jessica Simpson and Britney Spears, pop-music purveyors "have a tendency to cartoonify things to make them palatable," says Gane. "We're lucky that there's enough of the other types of people to come to our shows."

The National Post reports home on Canadian performances at SXSW.

This year, though, festival founder Perry Farrell was intent on spreading the wealth across more genres.

"We want the fans to discover and explore," Farrell said in a news release. "That's what Lollapalooza is all about: sounds of all genres swirling about as you walk through the expanse of Grant Park."

The Chicago Tribune is happy with this year's Lollapalooza lineup.

Stylus lists the top ten Monty Python songs.

Radiohead is scoring the film adaptation of Philip K. Dick's From a Scanner Darkly.

Episode #26 of the Bat Segundo Show features author William T. Vollmann.

Drowned in Sound interviews Adam Calvert of Eiger.

The Drive-By Truckers have announced tourdates for Europe and the US in support of their new album, A Blessing and a Curse.

Nashville's Be Your Own Pet talks to the Guardian.

So what kind of things did record labels say to woo them? "They say that they're either a big indie or a small major. And that they don't sign a lot of bands." "Yeah, Capitol Records!" explodes Pearl. "'We don't sign many bands.' Bullshit! They tell you everything they think you want to hear." You get the distinct feeling that things have moved slightly too fast for comfort. "I wish we could have had more time to do small things. The whole thing's got bigger than us, which is kinda weird."

Minnesota Public Radio is streaming acts from SXSW, including Editors, Nicolai Dunger, and Blackalicious (whose "The Craft" is my current morning alarm clock track).

Billboard reports that the Smiths turned down a five million dollar offer to headline Coachella.

Rilo Kiley's Jenny Lewis talks to the Washington Post.

"I never had a plan to make a solo record," Lewis said recently from Seattle, the second stop on her first headlining tour that brings her to the Birchmere on Thursday. "But 'I Never' felt different than all of the other [band] songs, and it led to the feeling within these songs. When we were finishing up 'More Adventurous' [in 2004], I just kept writing. I knew it would take a while for [Rilo Kiley] to get back to the studio, and I didn't want to forget the songs."

Author Naomi Wolf is interviewed by readers of the New York Times about her recent essay on fiction for young adults.

Q. 3. Is this literary trend really as insidious as it seems? Are silly novels by silly novelists really that capable of turning a reflective, critical, Gap-wearing teenage girl into a nasty clone of the girls she reads about?
— Anne De Marzio, Bloomfield, N.J.

They may not change the girl's behavior; but they do posit a model of what the dominant culture says holds value. I know from the girls in my own life that they often feel quite alone these days when they do hold out for kindness or integrity in a social setting. Is this a new problem? No, but in past generations the dominant culture of teen fiction did not make this behavior seem so geeky and aberrant.

The Arizona Republic lists six books that are the highlights of author Alan Moore's career.

Author Debra Dean talks to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer about her debut novel, Madonnas of Leningrad.

The iPod Hi-Fi disappoints Consumer Reports with its audio quality.

Patterson Hood of the Drive-By Truckers talks to the Irish Times about REM's musical shadow in Athens.

"I think there was a time in Athens when there was a backlash against them," says Hood. "I'm sure the same occurred with them boys over there that y'all got. Because they have a pretty high profile too. But to be honest, the Athens scene has benefited from having a band achieve what they have achieved. And they've been good citizens of our town. They put a lot of money back into the town." is covering SXSW, and offers pieces on Morrissey, the Beastie Boys, and more.

The Virginia Quarterly Review garnered more finalists (6) for the National Magazine Awards than the New Yorker (5).

Gratis Internet, home of the original "Free iPod" has been fined by the state of New York for violating its privacy policy. I gave up on them a couple of weeks ago when they imposed a three month time limit on their promotions.

NPR's Morning Edition previewed SXSW yesterday by listing artists to watch.


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