Nicole Malczan

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Bio: Nicole Malczan is a freelance writer who gets paid to toil around with words and delve into many exciting topics. Of all of them, her favorite is rock music. Born in the late 80s (and on the same day as Eddie Vedder), she sadly missed the formative years of many of her favorite bands. This may explain her deep love of all things 90s. Fun facts: When she’s not writing, Nicole enjoys watching pro wrestling, shopping for cheap albums at her local record store, working on her novel, and spending far too much money on concerts. Reach out to Nicole at; nicole (at) alternativenation.net

Marilyn Manson

What started out as just a small cameo on the last season of FX show “Sons of Anarchy” has evolved into a larger role for rocker Marilyn Manson. For the duration of the show, he’ll play a character named Ron Tully. Manson has had plenty of acting experience recently, including doing voice work on an episode of hit show “Once Upon a Time.”

On his new role, Manson said this: “‘Sons’ has been such a big part of my life, as well as my father’s. So I was determined to make him proud by being involved in what will probably be remembered as the most amazing piece of television cinema. After all, the very heart of ‘SOA’ is about that relationship. So, now all I need is a motorcycle.”

You can watch Marilyn Manson and the rest of the cast of “Sons of Anarchy” in September on FX.

For fans that have wondered which band-Soundgarden or Nine Inch Nails-would play first on the epic co-headlining tour the two groups will embark on this summer, the answer has finally arrived. According to Kim Thayil, his group Soundgarden will take the stage first when the tour begins on July 19th in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Thayil told Mike Jones of DC101 the following: “It makes sense that we perform before them. Nine Inch Nails is a production-heavy band. I saw the show a few months ago. [They have] amazing lights, lasers… We’re more of a live rock act, and they use a lot of production, both in the audio performance and the visual performance. If we were to play after them, it would be a long wait while they struck all their equipment and gear and they cleared the stage for us. It’s a lot easier for us to play before them. It would be very difficult logistically [for us to close the show].”

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Even though it’s 2014, Soundgarden’s music video for “Black Hole Sun” remains firmly entrenched at the top of most lists of the creepiest music videos. In case you want to relive the clip in gif form, now you can. To coincide with promotion for the band’s upcoming 20th anniversary re-release of Superunknown, various gifs have been released from the video with the Superunknown#20 stamp on them. Enjoy them here.

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It’s no secret that Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are collaborating again on a movie soundtrack, this time for the David Fincher film “Gone Girl.” The film will see release in October, but already there’s a website called Find Amazing Amy that hypes up the movie. By visiting that site, you can hear an as-yet-untitled musical contribution by Reznor and Ross.

Nine Inch Nails is currently in the middle of a European tour. During the band’s March 14th stop in Melbourne, photographer/videographer Rob Sheridan captured a pro shot video of the band playing the Downward Spiral classic “March of the Pigs.” Watch it below:

Setlist:
Copy of A
Survivalism
Terrible Lie
March of the Pigs
Piggy
The Frail
The Wretched
The Warning
Came Back Haunted
All Time Low
The Big Come Down
Gave Up
Ice Age (How to Destroy Angels cover) (with Mariqueen Maandig)
BBB (How to Destroy Angels cover) (with Mariqueen Maandig)
Wish
The Hand That Feeds
Head Like a Hole
Hurt

According to Kurt Sutter, the creator of the gritty show “Sons of Anarchy,” Marilyn Manson’s new material is all at once “potent,” “creepy,” and “cool.” If you’re a Manson fan, you’ll also get a chance to tune in to see him soon. Sutter mentioned in his Twitter post about Manson’s song  that Manson will appear on an upcoming episode of the seventh season of “Sons of Anarchy.” Supposedly, Manson will ride a dragon in the episode. Better get your DVRs ready.

If you were eager to see Queens of the Stone Age but couldn’t quite make it happen, you’re in luck. The band just added a bunch of new dates for a tour that starts on April 10th in Reno, NV and wraps up on October 7th in Colombia. The international dates are as follows:

4/10 Reno, NV – Grand Sierra Resort & Casino
4/12 Indio, CA – Coachella
4/15 Portland, OR – Keller Auditorium
4/17 San Francisco, CA – Bill Graham Civic Auditorium
4/19 Indio, CA – Coachella
5/5 Chicago, IL – Aragon Ballroom
5/6 Saint Paul, MN – Roy Wilkins Auditorium
5/7 Milwaukee, WI – The Riverside Theater
5/9 Chicago, IL – Aragon Ballroom
5/10 Maryland Heights, MO – Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
5/11 Boone, IA – Central Iowa Expo
5/13 Kansas City, MO – Starlight Theatre
5/14 Tulsa, OK – The Brady Theater
5/16-18 Gulf Shores, AL – Hangout Music Festival
5/23-25 George, Wa – Sasquatch Festival
5/28-31 Barcelona, Spain – Primavera Sound
5/29 Bologna, Italty – Rock in Idro (Joe Strummer Arena)
5/30 Lisbon, Portugal – Rock in Rio
6/1 Mantpellier, France – Zenith
6/3 Rome, Italy – Rock In Roma
6/5 Crans-Pres-Celingry, Switzerland – Caribana Festival
6/5-8 Nürburgring, Germany – Rock Am Ring
6/6-9 Nürburg, Germany – Rock Im Park
6/9 Ljubljana, Slovenia – Križanke
6/10 Dvorište Velesajma, Zagreb – Zagreb Fair
6/11 Serbia – Exit Adventure
6/13 Warsaw, Poland – Warsaw Orange Festival
6/13-15 Aarhus, Denmark – NorthSide Festival
7/8 Ottawa, ON – Ottawa Bluesfest
7/9 Montreal, QC – Bell Centre
7/12 Bangor, ME – Cross Insurance Center
7/16 Port Chester, NY – Capitol Theatre
7/20 Philadelphia, PA – Skyline Stage at The Mann Center
8/7-9 Göteborg, Sweden – Way Out West Festival
8/9 Zofingen, Switzerland – Heitere Open Air Zofingen 2014
8/11 Prague, Czech Republic – Forum Karlin
8/14-16 August St. Polten, Austria – Frequency Festival
8/15-17 Grosspoesna, Germany – Highfield Festival
8/16 Hasselt, Belgium – Pukkelpop
8/20 Belfast, Northern Ireland – Belsonic
8/22-24 Saint-cloud, France – Rock En Seine
9/30 Montevideo, Uruguay – La Trastienda Club
10/7 Bogota, Colombia – Royal Center

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Ahead of Nine Inch Nails’ performance at Austin City Limits airing this Saturday night, you can watch an interview with Trent Reznor. In the clip, Reznor discusses why he doesn’t do TV very often, the Tension tour setup, and Hesitation Marks. Check it out below:

Red Hot Chili Peppers’ bassist Flea has written a memoir detailing his life experiences in the turbulent world of music, and Grand Central Publishing has decided to picked it up. Flea didn’t have any help publishing the still-untitled book, and it doesn’t have a release date yet. However, here’s a tantalizing press comment about what to expect: “His move from a ‘normal’ upbringing in the suburbs of New York to Los Angeles to live a bohemian life with a jazz musician step-father; his young, rebellious life on the streets of LA where he befriends Anthony Kiedis and founds the Red Hot Chili Peppers with Kiedis and two other high school friends; details about his sometimes complex friendship and collaboration with Kiedis; his myriad experiences with hard drugs; and, of course, the tumultuous creative journey of the legendary Red Hot Chili Peppers through its various incarnations over the last 30 years, according to Flea.”

FionaApple

It all sounds strange, but the link is Joseph Cahill, director for the Fiona Apple clip “Every Single Night” from 2012’s the Idler Wheel. Perhaps in exchange, Fiona Apple agreed to have a small role in a small web series that Cahill created called H-Man. The show is all in French and/or German, but in the five-minute episode in which Apple appears, she plays a character named BioFrau, who plants a giant radioactive flower that threatens to take over the world. Apple speaks German too. You may want to turn on YouTube’s captions to enjoy the action in English. You can watch the clip below.

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If you’ve been dying to see a bit of Billy Corgan’s pro wrestling organization Resistance Pro Variety, the wait is over. Corgan will have a new reality show on AMC about the tribulations of creating one’s own wrestling company. According to Resistence Pro itself: “Billy Corgan pulls back the curtains on the pro-wrestling world as he takes over creative direction for the independent wrestling company Resistance Pro.”

Earlier this week, ahead of the re-release of Toadies’ classic Rubberneck (out April 1st), I had a chance to speak with lead singer Vaden Todd Lewis over the phone. We discussed everything from the band’s early days to touring Rubberneck again to future projects and everything in between.

Hi. How are you?

I’m good, thanks. How are you?

Doing well, thanks.

Good, good. My first question has to do with the Rubberneck reissue. What exactly made you want to do that?

Well it seemed like a good idea. People still liked the record, and it’s been years and so it seemed like the thing to do. It seemed like a good idea to put it out with some other songs.

You guys are doing a tour in support of the album. How is that going so far?

It’s been going crazy well. All the shows are…I think one show so far didn’t sell out, but it’s real close. It’s been great.

How have the fans been reacting?

Really well. It’s just been great.

You’re playing the album in its entirity every night on the tour, right?

Yeah, we’re kinda doing the whole album and then we play some other songs that are not as old.

What do you think is the biggest challenge playing the Rubberneck songs straight through?

Well, I don’t know. We’re really striving to make it like the album. I never thought about it until these rehearsals, but, you play the songs for 20 years and they start to morph. There’s just little slight variations in how you play it, and some of those songs were pretty new when we recorded them, so it’s been interesting going back and trying to nail them. We’ve been trying to nail the performances to be as close to the album as possible. That’s been the coolest challenge to try to match tempos and just picking patterns and little fine-tuning minutiae.

Now, for the openers, you chose the Supersuckers and Battleme, correct?

Correct.

What made you pick those two bands?

We’ve toured with the Supersuckers before and they’re just great guys. They have a new record out, and so does Battleme. We’ve never toured with Battleme, but we’ve done some shows with a band called the Lions, which was a band prior to Battleme. And yeah, both bands have new records out, and it was just fortunate timing working with both of them.

Even though you guys split up, you’ve been back since 2006, which is almost 10 years. How does it feel to be a part of a band that’s been around for so long?

I don’t know, it’s just weird. I don’t really think about it until…it’s cool. We have a great rapport with each other. I guess that’s been the biggest upside to being in a band, is you kind of read each other’s minds with everything from being on the bus to performing to writing songs. It’s all kind of a short-hand that exists once you’ve done this for a long time.

Are you guys working on any new material?

Yeah, we actually just finished tracking a record. Actually, let me back up. This is gonna seem like I’m fishing around for the answer for just a second. We’d been doing a festival…this year will be the eighth year. And like four or five years ago, we’ve done a set where half of it is a chill set. We take the songs and not just play them with acoustic guitars, but try make them something different, like reinvent them with mandolins, keyboards…we try to throw a new light on the songs. It’s been a huge challenge. After doing that for so many years, we thought it’d be great to do a recording of this in a controlled environment, i.e. a studio. So that’s what we did. I guess we started in December or January, we headed to LA. So it’s not technically new material; it’s a retrospective of our career with a real strange approach. We’re trying to work up potentially a few songs for that so it should have some new songs as well. It’ll probably come out in September. I really want to do a nice tour, a seated tour for grownups. A show that I would like to go to. (laughs)

If you could pick one moment, what do you think has been the high point for the band or yourself?

You mean my whole career?

Yeah.

Uh…High point…oh jeez, I don’t know. We have a lot. It’s just been a crazy ride. This tour, selling out LA has been a high point. Yeah.

Okay. That’s definitely great. What do you think is different about being in a band now versus being one in the 90s?

For me personally or just in general?

You could do both. Either or.

I don’t think much has changed in general. People still go in a van and still play shows. The instruments that they play vary from year to year, but it’s still basically four or five people that smell bad in a van. I don’t think that will ever change. As far as me personally, I’ve been doing this a long time and I’m older now, so it’s more about how to take care of yourself. For example, when we first hit the road in ’94, for the first two years, we did over 250 shows.

Wow.

Yeah. That’s pretty insane. I’m glad I did it, but I can’t do that anymore. I don’t want to do that anymore. I’ve got a family and a dog and life that I like to be a part of. So we try to limit it to three weeks on, one or two weeks off, that sort of thing. So things are a little more normal. That’s the biggest change for me, just learning how to do it and survive and keep my family.

You did some other projects when the band broke up for a while. Did any of those sounds influence the Toadies when you guys got back together?

I can’t think of an example, but I can’t see how it didn’t. That band…this band (Toadies), I write the music. More often than not I’ll have a completed idea, like the whole song. I’ll program drums and make my way through a guitar solo in the dark to show them where it goes, and everything’s done. Then we’ll come in and that’s the song and then we just record it. In the Burden Brothers, it was more collaborative where everyone was pitching ideas. There’s a few songs where I didn’t write anything. I would just let them write the music and words and everything. So that was more of a collaborative project. Everyone contributes to Toadies and there’s no “my way or the highway” mentality

Okay. Is it different at all being in the band for the second time? Has anything changed?

No, it’s like riding a bike. We have our dynamic, and it came right back. The interactions with the band…it’s been great.

Courtney Love may have just gotten off the hook in a defamation case against ex-laywer Rhonda Holmes last month, but her court battle yesterday was not nearly as successful. On February 20th, the singer went to bat in a libel case against Dawn Simorangkir, her former designer. Simorangkir and Love had battled it out in court back in 2011, when Simorangkir won a libel lawsuit.

This time, Simorangkir was suing due to comments that Love had carelessly made on the Howard Stern Show. During her interview, Love apparently said that Simorangkir had worked as a prostitute and had even stolen from her. However, Judge Michael L. Stern turned down Love’s anti-SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation) proposal.

During the Super Bowl, you’ll have more than the halftime entertainment vying for your ears. This Sunday, U2 plans to release a new track called “Invisible.” The charity track is free, but it still counts as a monetary donation. In fact, for every download, Bank of America will donate a dollar towards The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. Fans can donate up to two million dollars over the course of the night. Bank of America has already gotten the ball rolling with a donation of 10 million dollars.

Dave Grohl, Lindsey Buckingham, Queens of the Stone Age, and Nine Inch Nails will close out the 56th Annual Grammy Awards this Sunday night. Foo Fighters’ leader Grohl serves as the impetus for bringing together the large group, which has frequently collaborated in the last year. Grohl, Josh Homme, and Trent Reznor worked together on Grohl’s Sound City film soundtrack, Buckingham appeared on Nine Inch Nails’ Hesitation Marks, and Reznor and Grohl both contributed to the Queens of the Stone Age disc …Like Clockwork.

Grammy executive producer Keith Ehrlich released a statement as the news dropped today, saying the following: “We’re incredibly excited about this number. There’s nothing better than when the Grammys can rock out, and to have these artists all together on one stage, doing a number that, when they presented it to us, knocked us out, is going to turn out to be one of those Grammy moments that people talk about for a long time. Long live Trent, Josh, Dave and Lindsey and these great bands!” It will be the first-ever Grammy telecast performance for Nine Inch Nails and QOTSA.”

There’s no official word on what the musicians will perform, so you’ll have to tune into the Grammys this Sunday at 8 p.m on CBS to find out.

This summer, fans of the Dave Matthews Band will receive a special treat if they catch the band on tour. Dubbing their outing, “a Very Special Evening with Dave Matthews Band”, the group plans to squeeze out two setlists every gig. This effort will require a consistently shifting band lineup and also a pretty drastic change in sound as the band plans to sample tunes from its entire career.

The tour begins as early as May and runs until September. The full dates are as follows:

5/16 Woodlands, TX – Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
5/17 Dallas, TX – Gexa Energy Pavilion
5/21 Tulsa, OK – Bok Center
5/23 Pelham, AL – Oak Mountain Amphitheatre
5/24 Atlanta, GA – Aaron’s Amphitheatre at Lakewood
5/30 Saratoga Springs, NY – Saratoga Performing Arts Center
5/31 Saratoga Springs, NY – Saratoga Performing Arts Center
6/6 Bangor, ME – Darling’s Waterfront Pavilion
6/7 Mansfield, MA – Xfinity Center
6/10 Holmdel, NJ – PNC Bank Arts Center
6/11 Darien Center, NY – Darien Lakes Performing Arts Center
6/13 Camden, NJ – Susquehanna Bank Center
6/14 Camden, NJ – Susquehanna Bank Center
6/20 Noblesville, IN – Klipsch Music Center
6/21 Noblesville, IN – Klipsch Music Center
6/24 Toronto, ON – Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
6/25 Clarkston, MI – DTE Energy Music Theatre
6/27 Cuyahoga Falls, OH – Blossom Music Center
6/28 Burgettstown, PA – First Niagara Pavilion
7/2 Milwaukee, WI – Marcus Amphitheater – Summerfest
7/4 Chicago, IL – FirstMerit Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
7/5 Chicago, IL – FirstMerit Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island
7/9 Cincinnati, OH – Riverbend Music Center
7/11 Hartford, CT – Xfinity Theatre
7/12 Hartford, CT – Xfinity Theatre
7/15 Jacksonville, FL – Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena
7/16 Tampa, FL – Midflorida Credit Union Amphitheatre
7/18 West Palm Beach, FL – Cruzan Amphitheatre
7/19 West Palm Beach, FL – Cruzan Amphitheatre
7/22 Charlotte, NC – PNC Music Pavilion
7/23 Raleigh, NC – Walnut Creek Amphitheatre
7/25 Virginia Beach, VA – Farm Bureau Live at Virginia Beach
7/26 Bristow, VA – Jiffy Lube Live
8/22 Berkeley, CA – Greek Theatre
8/23 Berkeley, CA – Greek Theatre
8/24 Berkeley, CA – Greek Theatre
8/26 Bend, OR – Les Schwab Amphitheatre 
8/29 George, WA – The Gorge Amphitheatre
8/30 George, WA – The Gorge Amphitheatre
8/31 George, WA – The Gorge Amphitheatre
9/5 Chula Vista, CA – Sleep Train Amphitheatre
9/6 Irvine, CA – Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre

Ticket sales begin very soon on Friday, February 7th at 10 a.m. The Gorge show, however, has a later sale date of February 21st, also at 10 a.m.

FionaApple

Fiona Apple and her cabaret singer sister Maude Maggart have lent their vocal talents to other projects before, and the latest is their cover of the Anton Karas tune “I’m in the Middle of a Riddle.” The song will appear on Sweetheart 2014, a Valentine’s Day, love-song themed album released through Starbucks. Other contributors include Apple collaborator Blake Mills, Beck, and Vampire Weekend.

Listen to Apple’s contribution in full here.

 

 

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The rumor mill has been churning, and supposedly director and producer Aaron Sorkin and Courtney Love have been quietly dating for a few months, according to Page Six. A source quoted says that “he is intrigued by Courtney’s wit, while she says Aaron is a great influence on her. Some people might think they are an odd couple, but she likens them to Marilyn Monroe and Arthur Miller.”

A Sorkin representative noted that the two aren’t dating though, and there’s no confirmation from Courtney yet. In the meantime, she did make a rather revealing post on Twitter on Christmas about what she wants in her next relationship: “I think at nearly 50 the basis of any realtionship should be restraint and pragmatism before the big dramatic tsunami- shit i wish i knew this at 20…. its important to leave romances nicely — and its 2014 so im letting alot of grudges just go.”