A fest of special local interest for several years was the Rothbury Festival, several hours downstate right here in Michigan. Well, Rothbury itself is no longer, but another fest has sprung up in its place - the Electric Forest Festival, which will run June 30 through July 3 in the town of Rothbury. With a focus on what appears to be a trifecta of sounds - bluegrass, electronica, and local-ish bands - the lineup so far includes The String Cheese Incident, Tiesto, Stephen Marley, Galactic, The Ragbirds, The MacPodz, and Railroad Earth, among others get more info at www.electricforestfestival.com
Perhaps the two most groundbreaking boy bands of their time (laugh if you must, but the genre opened doors for many of todays male popsters, including musician/dancer/actor/comedian Justin Timberlake), New Kids on the Block and the Backstreet Boys, are being honored by their fans in a new pop collaborative album called NKOTBSB. The tracklisting for the set was in part determined by a 10-day online voting campaign called Help Make the Album, in which fans voted for their favorite tunes from both bands; a few new recordings are reportedly also in the works for the set...
Bruce Springsteen is perhaps a surprising guest on the newest album by the Dropkick Murphys; the bands seventh album, Going Out in Style, hit stores a couple of months ago, and listeners are just now starting to realize that its Bruces voice on the other half of a duet with Murphys frontman Ken Casey, on which the two share the tune Peg O My Heart. The Murphys new album also features a less-distinctive vocal appearance from NOFXs frontman Fat Mike
The fourth annual Outside Lands Music and Arts Fest in San Franciscos Golden Gate Park is now set for August 12 through 14, with headliners Arcade Fire, Muse, and Phish the top trio of the weekend. Phish - as might be expected - will play not one, but two jam-band sets at the event. Other performers on the bill include Old 97s, OK Go, The Black Keys, The Roots, Erykah Badu, John Fogerty, MGMT, and The Decemberists, who, incidentally, will also be performing at Interlochen this summer...
MODERN ROCK LINK OF THE WEEK:
Canadian post-punkers The Stills have decided to end their ten-year run as a band, stating via press release that their breakup is an amicable one, and that theyve mostly been keeping the band going the past year only out of respect for each other as friends. Look back on The Stills career (and check out their farewell letter) at http://www.arts-crafts.ca/thestills/index.php
MINI MODERN BUZZ:
Not much in the mood for muddy boots, cold campsites, and tie-dye shirt hawkers? Then visit Bonnaroo this year in June online instead of in-person via Vevo, who will be streaming live and on-demand performances from the Tennessee festival on the internet
Paul Weller will serve as opening act for Kings of Leon during the latters June shows in Londons Hyde Park this summer
Suede will be releasing remastered versions of their five studio albums this June, from their eponymous 1993 debut to 1994s Dog Man Star, 1996s Coming Up, 1999s Head Music, and 2002s A New Morning
Bright Eyes have added three new UK shows to their July schedule, including stops in Leeds, Manchester, and Birmingham
80s popster Gloria Estefan is working on her first English-language album since 2003 with none other than Pharrell Williams by her side in the studio
Hot Chips Alexis Taylor contributed original music to director Guy Bolongaros film The Last Emperor, which recently premiered at the London Independent Film Festival
And contributing their albums to your music collection this week (or so they hope) are these new releases Okkervil Rivers I Am Very Far... Sleepy Rebels Yellow Tree... Raphael Saadiqs Stone Rollin... Man Mans *Life Fantastic* and thats the buzz for this weeks Modern Rock.
Questions, comments, rants, raves, suggestions on this column? Send em to Kristi at firstname.lastname@example.org