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A-Trak Releases One of Everything

A-Trak's current schedule looks more like a list of New Year's resolutions than an actual calendar of events: it includes the releases of a live CD, a mixtape, and two albums, as well as partnerships with clothing, toy, and skateboard companies. We think it's called "expanding your brand."

The live CD is a double disc release on French label Disque Primeur containing A-Trak's and tourmates the Rub's sets at the Indianapolis stop of their 2006 "Sunglasses Is a Must" tour. It is available for online purchase here.

The albums are debuts from A-Trak himself as well as Chicago MC Kid Sister, a collaboration he revealed to us back in July during his Pitchfork Music Festival interview.

The mixtape is titled Dirty South Dance, and a preview in the form of a remix of UNK's "Walk It Out" (which totally slays, by the way) is available for download below. Since when did the Gossip become the go-to source for dancefloor bangers?

As for the clothes and other goodies, there are so many companies coming out with Sunglasses Is a Must gear that it's best just to list them: "New Era hats, Crooks & Castles t-shirts, Kid Robot toys, Stussy sunglasses, and Zoo York skate decks," according to a press release. That's a lot of stuff, but man cannot live on sunglasses alone.

A-Trak will play with Kanye West at Pepsi Smash in Miami, Florida on February 1.

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Ghostly International Curates Memory Stick Comp
Features Matthew Dear, Dabrye, Dykehouse, other Ghostly artists

Nothing says "Happy Holiday-of-Your-Choice" like a gadget, and with this in mind, Michigan electronic label Ghostly International has collaborated with New York design boutique Moss in the creation of what is, to our minds, the first officially released compilation on a USB-compatible memory stick.

Featuring a 128-megabyte flash memory and doubling as digital storage space, M/GM 1 (read: Moss/Ghostly Music Edition 1) features tracks from Matthew Dear, Dabrye, and Mobius Band, among others. Kristin Victoria Barron designed the device based on a concept from label head Sam Valenti IV.

According to a press release, M/GM 1 "is roughly the size of a pack of gum [and] can be used for data storage of any sort, a feature that follows from Ghostly's encouragement of file-sharing and desire to make music as portable and transferable as possible." A label that encourages file-sharing and the portability of music in 2006? What a novel idea, majors!

M/GM 1 is available starting this week at Moss' store and online here. [MORE...]
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Madvillain Become Action Figure
Not that they weren't before, but still

Are Gorillaz the new Beatles or something? Because either people are really interested in owning plastic miniaturized versions of their favorite artists or marketing departments are doing a successful job of convincing us that dolls aren't just for kids anymore.

And leading the charge is Kidrobot, the toy design company behind the Gorillaz miniatures and, as of January 11, an 8 1/2-inch Madvillain figure. Stones Throw is collaborating with Kidrobot on the release of the toy, which, according to the label's website, will come in two colors (black and green) and has "big giant fists to knock you out with."

We will admit it's hard to complain about a feature like that.

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XTC Become Action Figures
Vanquish enemies with sharpnness of their angular guitars, weight of their box sets

2006 has been a banner year for musicians undergoing toy-ification, and now it's time to add the members of XTC to the pile of tiny, limited edition musical figures.

The band's Idea Records has commissioned Irregular Miniatures' Ian Kay "to bring to life what is hoped will be a whole range of XTC collectors' figures in metal. Each set will show the band from a period in their history commencing with the White Music era. You'll get Andy [Partridge], Colin [Moulding], Terry [Chambers], and Barry [Andrews] in a live setting with relevant instruments (e.g. Barry comes with his Crumar Organ and Lawrence Piano), dressed in their monochrome best. All figures (55mm high) and equipment are cast in white metal and are hand painted, held securely in foam, and clad in a pictorial card sleeve which will be signed by Andy and Colin. Andy says, 'These figures are going to be charming. I know; I've seen them. So hurry and order yours today,'" according to a press release.

The White Music figures are in a limited edition of 200 sets, and as you can see from the picture on the left, Barry Andrews not only comes with his organ and piano but is also apparently wearing a Nixon mask. More pictures of the figures can be seen here... if you dare.
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Gorillaz Release Flood of Demon Days Multimedia

Animated multi-platinum act Gorillaz are following the success of last year's Demon Days with a DVD (their second), four iTunes-only EPs, new toy figurines, and an autobiography. Not too shabby for a bunch of cartoon characters.

The DVD, Phase Two: Slowboat to Hades, is the follow-up to the Phase One: Celebrity Takedown DVD that followed the release of their self-titled debut, and it is scheduled for an October 31 release.

According to a press release, Phase Two "rounds up the Demon Days era's award-winning videos, hi-tech performances, inventive animated shorts, acceptance speeches, and more," including "a brand-new 3D DVD reconstruction of Gorillaz' online hangout, Kong Studios. Viewers can wander through this decaying palace of sin and watch the breathtaking live performances in the cinema, visit the band's bedrooms, tour the corridors and find games, original animatics [?!], cameos from some of the Demon Days guests, and off-color jokes galore." It also comes with a CD-ROM full of 16 games, 45 desktop wallpapers, eight screensavers, and "hidden, achievement-based extras."

The four EPs that come with "previously unreleased videos and a digital booklet with images and access to bonus content like wallpaper, buddy icons, and more" are as follows: the Dare EP, due out October 24, the Dirty Harry EP, due out November 7, the El Mañana EP, due out December 5, and the Feel Good Inc. EP, due out December 26. They will be available exclusively via iTunes. [MORE...]

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Do you have a news tip for us? Anything crazy happen at a show you attended recently? Do you have inside info on the bands we cover? Is one of your favorite artists (that's not somebody you know personally) releasing a new record you'd like to see covered? You will remain completely anonymous, unless we are given your express permission to reveal your identity. (Please note that publicists, managers, booking agents, and other artist representatives are generally exempt from this rule, but will also be granted anonymity if requested.)

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File-icon Wed: 10-10-07: 12:30 PM CDT
Nirvana's Unplugged Gets DVD Release

File-icon Wed: 10-10-07: 12:00 PM CDT
Robert Pollard Plans Some Shows

File-icon Wed: 10-10-07: 11:00 AM CDT
Flaming Lips Plan Halloween Parade in Oklahoma City

File-icon Wed: 10-10-07: 10:19 AM CDT
Simian Mobile Disco, Hot Chip Remix Ladytron

File-icon Wed: 10-10-07: 09:00 AM CDT
Photos: Pop Montreal [Montreal, Quebec; 10/03-10/07/07]

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