Kirtland Sues Bush, and The Rocket Summer Gets Into The Christmas Spirit.
Leading off this week's column is an item that the Dallas Morning News' Robert Wilonsky filed during the long holiday weekend regarding the current legal dispute between the Dallas-based Kirtland Records and '90s alt-rockers Bush regarding the sale of the band's back catalog: According to the suit, an attempt by frontman Gavin Rossdale to reacquire the band's early material — chiefly 1994's Sixteen Stone LP — soured after Kirtland refused to accept their lowball, $2.75 million offer. Later, when New York-based firm Round Hill Music agreed to purchase the catalog for $5.6 million, Rossdale's people allegedly stepped in with letters accusing Kirtland of illegal business practices that later led to Round Hill's decision to back out of the deal. That's when Kirtland and his AOTL holding company decided to sue Rossdale for actions they're calling “tortious interference and defamation.”
It should be interesting to see how the suit shakes out, to be sure. In the meantime, we'd like to point out that Wilonsky deserves some kudos of late; he's certainly been on top of all the locally tied, music-related legal filings these past few weeks.
On a somewhat cheerier note, several more local artists followed the pattern set forth last week by Kelly Clarkson and Dead Flowers by releasing Christmas material of their own this week. First, there's Arlington's Pentatonix, arguably the internet's favorite a capella group over the past couple of months, who released their take on the classic “Little Drummer Boy” and have already racked up 8.5 million YouTube hits in a week's time. Then there's The Rocket Summer, which released a song called “Grapevine Christmas,” which takes its name from the band's hometown. A stream of that one, which will be released on the Bryce Avary-led group's upcoming Christmas EP, is available here. Also: Ronnie Fauss released his “Everybody Deserves a Merry Christmas this week via New West Records. Anyway, this is a trend we expect to continue next week. In fact, Fort Worth's Lindby has already similarly announced that its second annual Christmas EP is coming up just around the corner, too.
Sticking with the holiday theme: The Polyphonic Spree will return to the Lakewood Theater for its 11th annual Holiday Extravaganza on December 21. Before that, though, The Libertine will host its 14th annual toy drive on the 16th. This year, the bar has added additional stages and (donation opportunities) at nearby spots The Bottle Shop, The Single Wide and The Crown and Harp. The lineups for all four locations can be found here.
Not feeling the whole “holiday spirit” thing at the moment? Fear not, as there's plenty of tasty local music morsels still to come.
Take, for instance, Dallas rap duo Yung Nation, which had its two new, free-to-download mixtapes mentioned in The Fader yesterday. While AF3 is an “all freestyle” take on a number of recent radio hits, the duo's iYess2 is a follow-up to 2011's iYess and it features appearances from Problem, Dorrough and Lil Chuckee. Both can be streamed and/or downloaded here.
Speaking of that Dorrough Music fella: The rapper recently released a new collaboration of his own. His Play-N-Skillz-produced track, “La La La,” is a revamped take on the German pop group A Touch of Class' 2000 hit “Around the World (La La La La La)” and features a guest verse from Wiz Khalifa. You can listen to that one right here.
And while we're still on the subject of big name collaborations: The Dividends recently made it known that a track they recorded with Raekwon would be earning its release early next week. In our estimation, it's just as big a get for the Wu-Tang chef as it is for the local hip-hop duo. Seems pretty much everything Symbolyc One touches these days seems to turn to gold (or platinum, really). In fact, a pair of records the local producer worked on this year wound up on Rolling Stone's list of the 50 Best Albums of 2013 (read: Kanye's Yeezus, which took home the No. 2 spot, and Eminem's The Marshal Mathers LP2 which finished in the No. 24 hole). Meanwhile, Yeezus also finished No. 1 in both Spin and Stereogum's lists, as well, with MMLP2 appearing at No. 28 on the Spin list, too.
The Dividends aren't the only ones on those lists with local ties, either: Parquet Courts earned the No. 11 spot on Rolling Stone's list for their Light Up Gold LP, and Kacey Musgraves' Same Trailer Different Park came in at No. 17 on Spin's list.
Moving on, Fort Worth blues rockers — and Reddit darlings from earlier this year — The Josh Weathers Band appear to be calling it quits. The band's January 31st show at Billy Bob's is currently being billed as its “farewell show.” But a petition to prevent that from happening has already made its way online.
In this week's release news, Denton's Dome Dwellers released the least aggressive math rock laced album we've ever heard — and, believe us, that's supposed to be a huge compliment — today. Listen to that one here and see if you agree. Later in the week, the ever-funky BoomBachs will release their sophomore effort on Thursday night at The Whitehouse, and Fort Worth's Un Chien will do the same on Friday at Queen City Music Hall. Also on Friday: The West Windows and Red Like Heat (formerly Noonday Morningstar) will each release albums at their joint Friday show at Three Links.
Finally, a quick shout out to Haley Pittman, who assembled the below short film, which deals with North Texas' DIY punk culture and features a handful of local DIY venues, show houses and punk bands. It's definitely worth at least a cursory watch.
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