Letters 05-25-2015

Michigan’s Depleted Funds So now we know why the Michigan legislators wanted to rush Proposal 1 down our throats.

Legality of Marriage & Divorce An article in the May 25th issue of Time reveals that: “We now have reached a point where fewer than half of kids leaving high school will have their parents living together.”

Cold Paradise Your May 18 cover story “Why is Northern Michigan So White?” is preposterous. For starters, we have plenty of diversity in this region: German, Polish, Swedish, Lithuanian, Norwegian, French Canadian, etc. – all groups that flourish in colder, harsh winter climates.

Unpave Those Roads Michigan legislators recently put before the people a proposal to increase tax to increase funds to the DOT and road commissions across the state for road repairs. The proposal failed by a significant margin.

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Elvis brings out his best

Kristi Kates - May 10th, 2007
Elvis brings out his best

May means a Costello-level of cool for
Elvis Costello fans, as this week sees the release of UME’s The Best of Elvis Costello: The First 10 Years and Elvis Costello: Rock and Roll Music, two sets of Costello’s hits, album tracks, rarities, and B-sides.  Compiled by Elvis himselvis (er, sorry), the collections will include favorite Costello tracks “Radio Radio,” “Pump It Up,” “High Fidelity,” “Alison,” “Clean Money,” and, of course, “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace Love and Understanding.” Costello and his Imposters band will also kick off a 10-city tour that will begin on May 2...
Former Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan is finally back with a new solo CD, and she’ll be touring to support the album, as well.  Titled Are You Listening? - an apt question, given O’Riordan’s four-year absence from the music scene - the album is bound to strike a chord with the legions of leftover Cranberries fans, as well as new listeners who will be drawn in by her unique vocal and lyrical styles. Those same fans will be able to catch Dolores on the road in Toronto (7/7), NYC (7/10), Chicago (7/15), and L.A. (7/19), among other cities...

Lollapalooza, Coachella, Benicassim - why, exactly, do summer music festivals have such strange names? Who knows - but Seattle’s Bumbershoot is back to join the fray this year with their yearly strangely-named event, at which they’re one of the few festivals to also include other genres of art in their lineup. That’s right, in addition to live music from the likes of The Shins, Crowded House, Panic! at the Disco, Devendra Banhart, and a parasol full of other acts, you can also see contemporary dance performances, theater events, and presentations of literary arts. Bumbershoot takes place at the tail end of summer, the first weekend in September. Check out the Rest of the Fests in an upcoming Express issue, as we outline what else you can look forward to festival-wise for the summer of 2007...
The newly reformed Smashing Pumpkins - well, part of the Pumpkins, namely drummer Jimmy Chamberlin and the all-important frontman Billy Corgan (plus other bandmates TBA) - are set to put those one-off rumors to rest by embarking on an entire slate of shows this summer. Kicking off on May 22 in Paris, France, the band will take the stage for several theater shows, and will follow up that show with stops at a plethora of European summer music festivals, including Barcelona’s Primavera Sound on 5/31, Nickelsdorf’s Nova Rock Fest on 6/15, and England’s Leeds/Reading on 8/24-8/26. So far, the only stateside stops scheduled are New Jersey’s Live Earth Fest on 7/7, Baltimore’s V Festival on 8/4-8/5, and Toronto’s version of the V Fest on 9/9 - but we hear more North American dates are on the way. Oh, and did we mention there’s a new SP album to go along with all this jazz? Yup, it’s called
Zeitgeist, and you can snag a copy July 7...
Wanna see Razorlight live? Well, you’d better run at light speed for those tix, because their only U.S. summer show this year is going to be at NYC’s Gramercy Theater on May 10, with tickets available at our old friend (cough) www.ticketmaster.com...
Art-pop band Menomena will be a little easier to catch - embarking on a summer tour in support of their second album, Friend and Foe - see ’em in Sacramento, CA (6/7), L.A. (6/12), NYC (7/13), and in Chicago on 7/15 for the Pitchfork Music Festival...
Norway’s electro-smashers (and SXSW hit) Datarock are set to release their debut album, Datarock Datarock (the album so nice, they named it twice), and are playing a dozen or so U.S. shows to support, including stops in Montreal (6/3), Toronto (6/4), Chicago (6/5), and Minneapolis (6/6)...
Fellow cold-weather rockers Sigur Ros are prepping to both release a book (In a Frozen Sea, a collection of photos taken while the band was on tour) in June, and an as-yet-untitled EP in August...
The Arcade Fire’s frontman Win Butler is recovering nicely from a nasty bout of sinus surgery and the band is now expected to resume touring in a couple of weeks...
And the Shout Out Louds, jettisoned by their former label, Capitol Records, are now back in the game on Merge Records, and will drop their new Bjorn Yttling-produced album, Our Ill Wills, in September...
ON CD: The Bravery’s The Sun and the Moon...Black Rebel Motorcycle Club’s Baby 81... Hanson’s (yes, that Hanson) The Walk... Bone Thugs-N-Harmony’s Strength and Loyalty...  The Yardbirds’ The Yardbirds Story: 1963-1966... and Squeeze’s Essential Squeeze (remastered)... ON DVD:  Paul Rodgers’ Live in Glasgow... This is Tom Jones... Ultimate Critical Review: Red Hot Chili Peppers... and Michigander Madonna’s The Wild Angel... and that’s the buzz for this week’s Modern Rock.
Questions, comments, rants, raves, sugges-
tions on this column or your fave musicians? 
Send ‘em to Kristi at modernrocker@gmail.com
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