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By Andy Argyrakis
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Novo Dahl Weekend Report: Next Big Nashville follows SxSW model
Friday, September 7, 2007
With over 130 bands and ten venues across five days, it may sound like a mini SxSW, though this event isn't happening in America's live musical capital. Instead it turns to the equally historical Music City (Nashville to be exact), culling together a plethora of up and coming indie acts (and a few already familiar faces) spanning several genres. Some of the top draws on the fittingly named Next Big Nashville include The Features, The Pink Spiders, Butterfly Boucher, Landon Pigg, Gabe Dixon Band, Luna Halo, Eef Barzalay (Clem Snide), Judd & Maggie, Venus Hum, Jeremy Lister, Carey Ott, Sam Ashworth, Cage the Elephant, The Last Goodbye and De Novo Dahl (fresh off Chicago's Download Festival with The Shins).

Venues are just as diverse as the bands presented, including the famous club confines of Exit/In and 12th & Porter, plus Grimey's New and Preloved Music (one of the country's most treasured independent record stores). Butterfly
BoucherOutside of concerts and showcases, some artists will participate in VIP events, in store signings and after parties (such as Sunday's finale WRLT/Lightning 100 broadcast with legendary songwriter Freedy Johnston).

And just like SxSW or the Big Apple's CMJ Music Marathon, NBN rolls out the red carpet for both music industry executives and everyday fans, mixing networking with a casual atmosphere. Though the event already kicked off Wednesday and carried into Thursday, the event spreads throughout the entire weekend featuring an even bigger bulk of live music. A complete schedule and wristbands to the entire event are currently onsale at www.nextbignashville.net or www.myspace.com/nextbignashville.
PJ Harvey Daft's live disc, Harvey hits the road
Thursday, September 6, 2007
Prior to this summer's festival season and a recent Kanye West collaboration, dance rockers Daft Punk hadn't been all that active in recent years. But the stagnant streak officially comes to an end with the November 20 release of Daft Punk Alive 2007 (Virgin). The concert was captured at Palais Omnisports de Paris-Bercy earlier this year, marking the band's first hometown show in ten years. Aside from a traditional single disc package, the project also releases as a two disc set bundled with a bound book and five additional tunes from the show's encore.

It's been three years since PJ Harvey last toured America, and while she isn't exactly launching a full-fledged outing, the always vital singer/songwriter just announced a pair of spot dates. The tunesmith's next disc White Chalk (Island) drops on ChiodosSeptember 25 and will be followed by a career spanning concert at the Beacon Theatre in New York City on October 10 and The Orpheum in Los Angeles on October 15. No other U.S. dates are on the books at present time, though these two shows go on sale tomorrow at www.ticketmaster.com.

Vans Warped Tour heroes Chiodos just dropped Bone Palace Ballet (Equal Vision) on Tuesday, produced by Casey Bates (Fear Before the March of Flames, Gatsbys American Dream) and mixed by David Bendeth (Red Jumpsuit Apparatus, Paramore). Aside from wrapping up a headlining slot on Warped, the guys are also recent cover boys for Alternative Press and will soon announce a full-fledged fall tour. The group's sound moves between aggressive alternative rock, punk, occasional prog rock nuances and even classical leanings.
Willie Nelson A country triple team, Double dose of death
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
There are very few living legends left in the classic country field, but pretty much all of them (aside from possibly George Jones) teamed together for the aptly titled DVD Last of the Breed (A&E Home Video). Similar to a CD and tour of the same name, famed troubadours Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and Ray Price rotate between a series of solo and collaborative sets. The trio continues to defy convention by not just sticking to the predictable songs that made them famous, but also focusing on rarities, covers and new tunes. The release is slated to hit stores September 25 and also features an interview with all three artists and a tour of Nelson's tour bus by the world traveler himself.

While the closure of CBGB marked the end of an era, last week's death of founder Hilly Kristal from cancer seemed to bring closure to this sad but historical chapter. The famed promoter first opened the club in 1973, Edie Brickell & New
Bohemiansbecoming the birth place for punk legends the Ramones and Patti Smith, plus alternative rock heroes Talking Heads and Blondie. Smith returned to the original New York haunt last October to close the club down, and while Kristal attended, he was visibly suffering from the disease and walking with a cane.

In a less expected music industry loss, Jeffrey Carter Albrecht (keyboardist for Edie Brickell & New Bohemians) was shot Monday outside of his girlfriend's house. He was apparently attempting to kick down her door, but after no avail, began frantically pounding on a neighbor's door. The neighbor, assuming he was a prowler, fired a gun shot through the door, striking and killing Albrecht. Outside of the New Bohemians, the player was part of Dallas-based indie rockers Sorta.
Chris Robinson Street Date: Solo Crowes, Classic British beats
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
After releasing on CD earlier this summer, Chris & Rich Robinson turn to DVD for another installment of Brothers of a Feather: Live at the Roxy (Eagle Vision). No matter what the format, the project marks the first ever acoustic appearance of many Crowes' hits, album cuts and rarities, along with covers and new tunes. The audio version rounds out with fourteen tracks and the visual installment clocks in at twenty, though shared songs include "Cursed Diamond," "Magic Rooster Blues," "Darling of the Underground Press" and "Thorn In My Pride."

The British Beat Live (Shout! Factory) takes the most notable performance clips from the public television program of the same name, particularly honing in on the 1960s. Key artists include Eric Burdon & The Animals Ted Nugent (who contribute "We Gotta Get Out Of This Place" and "House Of The Rising Sun"), along with The Zombies ("Time Of The Season" and "She's Not There"). Other contributors come from Gerry & The Pacemakers, Denny Laine and Reg Presley & The Troggs (who turn in the enduring "Wild Thing").

He may not exactly fit within the music industry's typical liberal leanings as an avid Second Amendment supporter and unabashed hunter, but Ted Nugent continues stringing up bows and arrows of his own way after forty years in action. Today marks the release of his thirty-second CD Love Grenade (Eagle Records), his first all original title in five years. The project is a return to the Motor City Madman's hard rock form via a power trio of players, plus a re-recording of the famous "Journey To The Center Of The Mind" (which celebrates its fortieth anniversary this year). It's a ballsy blend not recommended for the faint at heart (or the vegan crowd).

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