Has The WWE Network Reached Its Peak?

A little while back we did an editorial on the top ten ways the WWE Network can grow as a network. This week fellow AlternativeNation reporters Mike Mazzarone, Anthony Falco and contributor Joseph R. Cooper delve into the WWE Network months into launch as we ask – has the WWE Network reached it’s peak in this new roundtable discussion. We invite readers to post their thoughts in the comments section.

Mike Mazzarone: Alright. First off, I want to say so we don’t get things twisted that I love the WWE Network. However the subscriber reports have been disappointing to say the least. The Network needs 1,000,000 to break even and they are around, I believe at the 7-800,000 mark. There have been no significant gains recently in subscriber numbers. Is it safe to say the WWE Network subscription base has plateaued?

Anthony Falco: I’m not sure we can say that just yet. I feel that in the coming months, we’ll probably see a decent enough gain here in the United States before it finally plateaus, however it’s not going to be fast by any means.

Mike Mazzarone: You can argue that things will take time, yes. Netflix only had 400,000 subscribers in 2001 and were just starting out. However, WWE clearly expected more than a million. They didn’t expect this to be a slow building thing and it’s not there. We won’t know if expanding into other countries will exceed the one million mark, although it should. But what is stopping fans from investing in what is undoubtedly a big steal in terms of pure content?

Joseph R. Cooper: First off as a Canadian, I am getting hosed and hosed bad by this Rogers deal, I don’t have cable nor do I have any intention of getting cable, I cut the cord a long time ago and then moved into a building that has no cable, so even if I wanted it, I can’t have it, so my initial reaction of “shut up and take my money” was replaced with “Are you [redacted] kidding me?” Rogers launched The Network at 12.99 that has even less content and more problems than the United States did at launch but it really doesn’t hurt that the WWE has MLB helping them in the States while here in Canada we have call centres in Quebec and India, but they’re working on releasing an app that will no doubt require you to be a Rogers subscriber to use and I couldn’t give them my money if I wanted to as I’m serviced by a different cable provider and as mentioned previous, my building doesn’t have cable connections, this is 2014 and the WWE which looked like they were going to be leading the future of the business by moving to the Internet and now just 6 months later are going to be making deals with the Cable companies abroad to provide the same experience I am having here, hello United Kingdom, I’m talking to you.

Anthony Falco: They have a few issues. One of the issues is that the casual fans don’t need to see all the old Pay Per Views, they could probably care less and only want to see what is going on right now. Sure their are exceptions to that rule, but mostly it’s the more die hard fans, the more hardcore fans, who want the network.

Joseph R. Cooper: Back to the question though, what’s stopping most wrestling fans from investing in The Network is the price, at 9.99 its not much at all, I’ve had subs from Subway that cost 15 bucks without a drink, but even if they offered it at 99 cents a month wrestling fans would still find a reason to bitch about it, in this world of streaming sites like VIPBox and First Row Sports alongside wrestling centric sites like WatchWrestling.net and Xtreme Wrestling Torrents, almost everything you can find on the Network can be found online, for free. Although 9.99 a month is nothing in comparison to 60 bucks a month for a PPV, plus all the other content on top of it, for example I pay 3.99 a month for a YouTube channel, Drive+, which is a car magazine channel started by YouTube and JF Musial during YouTube’s New Content Initiative thing they were funding until 1/1 of this year and had to switch to subscription service last month after exhausting all of their YouTube Money to keep the expected content, I’ve bought Porn Mags for 4 times that, I spend 4-5 times that a month on my Steam account for stuff to just collect dust, yes I get it, you’re a millennial, you’re used to getting everything handed to you for next to nothing, if not free but if you want to call yourself a wrestling fan and you don’t have The Network, I have something to say to you, “You are not a wrestling fan, you’re just a cheapskate.” Get The Network, it pays for itself in the 2nd month even if you only watch it once a month.

Mike Mazzarone: In my opinion I don’t know if causal if the vast library and archived content is as big of a draw as we think. It’s nice but there was a reason why WWE 24/7 had pretty low subscriber numbers. I don’t believe your casual, every day fan will be interested in past events and stuff that happened in the 80s mid 90s. A lot of diehards most likely own these events either on DVD, Blu-Ray or even VHS so why pay money to view content you already have.

Joseph R. Cooper: WWE 24/7 was also the drizzling shits, Mike. WWE on Netflix is better by comparison. I’m pretty sure everybody involved would like to forget about it existed anyways, it was a good in theory but poorly priced and the content wasn’t up to date in practice. Kinda like how The Network is in Canada right now.

Anthony Falco: Another problem is their aggressive advertising. As much as it works for the casual fans who are on the edge, it just drives the die hard fan base away since they find it annoying and over saturated. We know they are going to advertise, and even more so now since it’s numbers are doing as well, but it comes off bad especially to the hardcore fans.

Mike Mazzarone: It’s something I agree on. It helps that their C shows are exclusive to the network – Main Event, NXT. But again, does that really cater to the CASUAL fan? The casual fan watches for RAW and sometimes Smackdown. WWE should’ve found a way to air RAW or at least SD exclusively on the network. This NBC deal is going to cripple them. Also, the infomercial-like advertising could potentially backfire in my opinion. I think one of the reasons I have yet to download the WWE app is because I have Michael Cole telling weekly to download the thing.

Joseph R. Cooper: I just deleted the app last week, because I was missing RAW live often enough that I was getting spoilers that I thought were texts because of the notification it used, you’d only see 20 or so characters on the screen before dismissing it, but that was usually enough to let me know what was about to happen. You can chalk it up to being lazy and not messing with the settings myself, but some vagueness on the notifications during a live show would be nice, the app in general is good for what it does, promotes lesser talent, has a cool commercial feed so you don’t miss on the action, but you really need a tablet to get the full function of the app, as I feel a phones screen just isn’t catered for that and it shows that the WWE is moving towards a digital content, but with nobody buying in they still have to make deals with the cable companies to keep the Network afloat, see Canada, see United Kingdom.

Mike Mazzarone: But think about the whole pay per view aspect of the Network as well. Their major selling point, asides from the back catalog is the fact that each PPV is basically 9.99 a month instead of 60 dollars a month. This is a good thing, yes. I’m not denying that. However, how many PPVs is one actually going to watch? Out of the 12 PPVs that WWE produces. How many are actually important? Summerslam, Wrestlemania, Royal Rumble and MAYBE Survivor Series. The rest feel like bloated RAWs. Why would I, even at that price choose to watch Payback or TLC over Football on Sundays or the NBA? Or a show like Game Of Thrones.

Joseph R. Cooper: I am going to watch them all, the WWE is really starting to stack the PPV cards with enough action to make you think the 9.99 is a steal, which it is, but people aren’t understanding what kind of deal they’re getting and as such the subscriber rates are less than expected hence the whole “9.99” edict that went through recently to push The Network as a bargain, which after how good Summerslam just was, will hopefully drive the point home.

Anthony Falco: I always thought when the Network was being developed that they were going to show RAW and Smackdown on it as well as the other shows. Once I found out they weren’t, even though I could still watch it on a TV, i felt the value of the service dropped.

Joseph R. Cooper: It would be nice to have RAW and Smackdown up within 24 hours of airing, hell it would stop me from using WatchWrestling as much as I do, but with current television deals in place, they have to wait 30 days for it to be up on The Network which doesn’t really make sense when the PPV’s are up pretty much as they air, sure they own all the content because its on The Network but it would be nice to be able to watch the week of the PPV before the PPV is up, just in case you missed something or need to get your friend up to date before the show, but as it stands right now you can’t do that and it is one of the glaring downsides of The Network.

Mike Mazzarone: Same. My ex-friend bought the network thinking RAW and SD was going to be on it. Perhaps it was unrealistic to air RAW on the Network right during launch but it would of helped numbers. It could’ve been doable when it comes to SD which airs on Syfy of all places. Let’s face facts. Besides from the CW Smackdown has never really been on an established network.

Anthony Falco: Exactly, that is a big issue as well. Pay Per Views are great to rewatch, sure, but how many times do I really need to re-watch Summerslam 2002, or Wrestlemania 17. Not to mention the vast amount of PPV’s I have no real desire to re-watch.

Mike Mazzarone: The WWE need to stick with the Network. They cannot claim failure. Currently with this model HHH and Co. are losing 20 dollars per PPV. I strongly believe the Network is one of the main reasons all the budget cuts are being made. You also have five hours of programing per week (three coming in on one day. The casual fan has their WWE fix and can follow without watching PPVs or some random 90s PPV. There needs to be an overhaul on the marketing. They need to make this a better draw. Like I said, the NBC deal is going to hinder them. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t want this to seem like I’m against the WWE network. I LOVE everything the WWE offers but then again I’m a diehard. I’m in the camp that can’t wait for the WCW content to come out. This is just to examine the flaws within the Network and it’s appeal (or lack there of) to casual fans.

Joseph R. Cooper: I’m with you there Mike, I need more WCW content, all of the Clash of the Champions and PPV’s are nice and everything, but they keep holding me off on the Monday Night War, Thunder and would it kill them to start posting some WCW Saturday Nights? SATURDAY 6:05! ONLY ON THE SUPERSTATION! That was a staple of my childhood, I want some JCP, I want the entirety of WCW 1993 where Vader kills everybody with Harley Race doing most of the talking, I want Rick Rude as the World Champion, I want to see classic Heyman promos when he was the leader of The Dangerous Alliance, if only for those to show up in a supercut compilation of his best work on YouTube, hell put the 2011 season of RAW on The Network and I will binge watch from 11 til now just to see how quickly the product changed to what it is now and of course for all the awesome Punk promos, I love The Network, I’ve watched almost all of the Legend’s Roundtables, most of the Original Specials, I need to catch up on NXT because I’ve been busy the last couple months and thats been on the burner, but that’s what weekends are for.

Anthony Falco: See, I am also a big fan of the WWE network. I love the service, but I see why so many people are turned off about it. The network could be so much more than it is though. Imagine the network doing brand new content that you want to see. I honestly want to see what the reruns of Total Divas and Slam City do on the network, because I don’t ever have a desire to watch those.

total divas

Mike Mazzarone: Right. The original content is something I have issue with. Especially Slam City which is an excellent premise. However, when you cannot get your own employees, the superstars of your own company to do the voices then it’s a bit suspect. Legends House was fantastic but I would love to see more original programing and reality shows.

Anthony Falco: Legends house was good, but I feel it lacked in some areas. Slam City would be greatly helped by the wrestlers actually doing their parts. I understand that’s hard for some of them to do, like John Cena, who has a heck of a schedule. Still, it would help a lot to get that show going in the right direction.

Mike Mazzarone: There is no reason someone like Sheamus can’t do his voice. Also it’s not like Slam City is a 30 minute show. It’s like 5-8 minutes if that.

Joseph R. Cooper: You won’t find a complaint about that from me, but I haven’t watched any of the Original Series like Legends House or Total Divas, reality TV isn’t my thing and Slam City isn’t Archer, but I can see their appeal and yes Slam City should have the characters being voiced by the talent.

Anthony Falco: I just imagine that one day, the WWE Network will finally be what we want it to be. All old RAWs and Smackdowns, not just some. Half of wanting to see the old PPV’s is wanting to see the old shows. I don’t just want to see Vince McMahon get his ass kicked by Stone Cold on a PPV, I want to see it for the several weeks it happened on TV before that as well. Imagine if they got one on one interviews on the network as well. What better ways to showcase your talent then on your own network. How about once a day, you have some in a interview, or a promo, or something. Have them go off, do it the right way, give them the mic and let them go and showcase it on the network. What better way to gauge who has the Stone Cold or The Rock factor then letting them do it. If they do a promo, and it sucks, oh well, move on, down the line we will try again. The Network could help in this area though. It’s a place where it’s lower risk if people see a bad promo, but it’s great place to test these types of things.

Mike Mazzarone: I see the Network as a potential cornerstone for the WWE. However, this is a growing period. That needs to be realized by most. Right now the Don West infomercial style shills come off as cheesy. But if WWE stays course, tones down the weekly ads and changes its focus on the casual demographic as well as your die hard fan and in turn finding that balance then they would really have something. I hope it happens.

Anthony Falco: I hope it does too, because the Network is a great thing already, and if they just put in that extra effort and do it right, there is no telling where it will be in a few years.

Joseph R. Cooper: Good things come to those who wait, some wrestling fans can’t grasp that sometimes, but a year or so from now when The Network is in full swing and is properly worldwide on the internet, we’ll find another thing to complain about it, because we’re wrestling fans, we wouldn’t have it any other way.

AlternativeNation.net Review: Billy Corgan Serenades His Hometown At Ravinia Festival In Chicago

Photo credit: @thesolsticebare on Instagram

On Saturday, August 30th, Billy Corgan played Ravinia in Highland Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago.  Billy took the stage at approximately 8:10 p.m. with the sun setting on a sticky Saturday night, dressed in a dark pin-striped suit and black shirt, as if ready to conduct a symphony.  He walked to the mic, acknowledged the crowd, and then went back to the piano.  He opened with “Chicago,” an unreleased ode to the city that certainly got the crowd’s attention as they continued to take their seats.  Billy previously performed the song on the WGN Morning News two weeks earlier to promote this one-off event.  At that time, it was performed on acoustic guitar.

He followed with “Today” and “Disarm” by himself on acoustic guitar to further pull in the crowd.  He followed the two hits with a set of more obscure songs that played very well in the stripped-down setting, with just himself and Jeff Schroeder on acoustic guitar.  Billy then mentioned that in 1997, he wrote an album about loss, primarily his mother, and followed that introduction with “Perfect” and “Let Me Give the World to You,” which was not on the album Adore, but was recorded for the album and is part of the deluxe re-issue of the album.  Sadly, only one more track from the incredible album that would have suited the setting very well would be played the rest of the night.

After “Prairie Song,” Billy walked back to the piano to begin the Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness suite he had promised in previous blog posts.  It began with the instrumental title track which sounded beautiful in the setting.  Billy remained at the piano for “To Forgive” and surprisingly “Muzzle” as well and then returned to acoustic guitar for “Tonight, Tonight,” leaving the lyrics as the original “in your city by the lake, the place where you were born.”  “Galapagos” was another surprise, but was followed by the rarest of the rare.  Billy introduced “Methuselah” as the only track that he wrote for the album but never played for the producers.  He added that it was written about his father, “Bill Sr.” with whom he was not speaking at that time and this was the first time the song was being played live.  That was followed by an emotional “Thirty-Three” and “1979,” ending the mini-set commemorating the amazing 1995 album.  It certainly left any fan of the album wanting more.

“Now (and Then)” from Billy’s solo album, TheFutureEmbrace, followed with Billy dropping his instruments and grabbing the mic, supported by Jeff and a backing track.  Billy remained on the mic only for a dark, amazing and unexpected performance of “The Beginning is the End is the Beginning.”  “The Crying Tree of Mercury” followed and essentially warned the crowd to prepare themselves, because Billy then introduced Matt Walker on drums and all hell broke loose.  Until this moment, the crowd had been subdued and respectful—a true suburban crowd.  At times, you could hear a pick drop between songs, but then the pounding rhythm of “Ava Adore” began and Billy was like a liberated beast (no, not like a rat from a cage).  “I’ll pull your crooked teeth, you’ll be perfect just like B.C.” he screamed at the crowd.  This was the most free and relaxed Billy seemed all night and it was infectious.

Billy, Jeff and Matt were then joined by the band Ex-Cops and Sierra Swan for “Pinwheels” through the remainder of the set.  “Stand Inside Your Love” followed, with Amalie Bruun from Ex-Cops taking over lead vocals.  She remained on lead vocals for a cover of the Poppy Family’s oldie, “Which Way You Going, Billy?” which seemed as if it came as a surprise to Billy.  The main set ended with Billy introducing the final song as a “pre-Halloween treat” from the upcoming album, the song “Burnt-Orange Black.”

The audience anticipated an encore and the band returned for two more songs.  The night ended at approximately 10:30 p.m. with Billy’s brother and the entire cast of Resistance Pro on stage in full wrestling wardrobes for “Of a Broken Heart.”

Overall, the event was a great retrospect of Billy’s extensive catalog.  Although no two fans will ever agree on the perfect setlist and it may have been better to end the night with some well-known songs, such as “Cherub Rock” or even “Today” being moved to the final spot, I felt privileged to attend the highly-anticipated one-off show and experience these songs in a unique setting.    Although The Smashing Pumpkins may not sell out arenas anymore, Billy can certainly grab an acoustic guitar and play anywhere he wants.

Setlist:
Chicago
Today (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Disarm (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Turn Your Way
As Time Draws Near
For Your Love (Zwan song)
The Rose March (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Perfect (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Let Me Give the World to You (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Follow Me
Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
To Forgive (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Muzzle (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Tonight, Tonight (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Galapogos (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Methuselah
Thirty-Three (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
1979 (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Now (And Then)
The Beginning Is the End Is the Beginning (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
The Crying Tree of Mercury (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Ava Adore (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Pinwheels (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Stand Inside Your Love (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
(Unknown)
Burnt Orange-Black

Encore:
The World’s Fair
Of a Broken Heart (Zwan song)

Frances Bean Cobain Praises Oasis Debut Album ‘Definitely Maybe’ As It Turns 20

Oasis’ debut album Definitely Maybe turned 20 years old yesterday prompting Frances Bean Cobain to tweet the following:

Frances Oasis Tweet

Though Frances was barely 2 years old when the album was released, Definitely Maybe had a wide influence on the musical landscape when it was released and continues to have a lasting impact. In 1994 Britpop reined supreme in England but in America Grunge was still going strong. Despite this musical climate, Oasis had U.S. hits from the album with “Supersonic” reaching #11 on Billboard’s Modern Rock Charts and a bigger hit with “Live Forever” which reached #2 and #10 on Billboard’s Modern Rock Charts and Mainstream Rock charts, respectively.

Though Oasis’ second album 1995’s (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? contained their biggest U.S. hits “Wonderwall” and “Champagne Supernova,” it was Definitely Maybe that first solidified the combination of Noel Gallagher’s potent songwriting with his younger brother Liam’s cocky, snarling vocals, which made the band stars on both sides on the Atlantic. After (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? Oasis’ recording career lost the momentum they had built in the mid-nineties and the band eventually called it quits in 2009 after the constantly feuding Gallagher brothers finally could no longer stand each other.

Definitely Maybe still stands as a high water mark in Oasis’ career containing some of the band’s best work. Someday if and when the Gallagher brothers decide to bury the hatchet and reform Oasis many of these songs will remain staples of their live show with their sing along choruses and infectious melodies. Until then Oasis fans will have to settle for Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds and Liam Gallagher’s band Beady Eye. Oasis, like so many other great bands, are much better together as a sum of their parts than individually. Since no Oasis reunion is likely this year one can only hope the Gallagher brothers can make up in 2015 for a (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? 20th Anniversary tour.

Butch Vig Praises Dave Grohl; Talks Details On “Sonic Highways”

In a new interview with CBS affiliate 93XRT, producer and musician Butch Vig discussed what it was like working with Dave Grohl and the Foo’s once again.

“I love Dave like a crazy brother. I don’t know anyone who has such infectious enthusiasm for life and for music…(The Foo’s)are capable of doing what they want to do, and we decided to make this record in eight different cities. The band wrote eight songs and we recorded them all in eight different locales in the U.S.”

Vig, who worked with the Foo Fighters on their 2011 album Wasting Light discussed details on the band’s upcoming album Sonic Highways as well as the band’s upcoming HBO documentary:

“Part of the documentary is about the recording of the song and a lot of it is about he musical history of that city…And it’s also about what it means to the Foo’s and to Dave. He taps into what each city musically, personally means him. Each city truly had it’s own experience. One of the cool things about the album is…each song has that city’s sound to a certain extent and definitely the environment we recorded in. Each song is it’s own unique beast.”

Sonic Highways is due out November 10, 2014. Documentary series Sonic Highways premieres on HBO October 17th, at 11pm.

Soundgarden/Nine Inch Nails Setlist From Last Night’s Show In Auburn, WA

Soundgarden setlist:
Searching With My Good Eye Closed
Spoonman
The Day I Tried to Live
My Wave
Outshined
Jesus Christ Pose
Hunted Down
Fell on Black Days
Mailman
A Thousand Days Before
Burden in My Hand
Rusty Cage
Beyond the Wheel

Nine Inch Nails setlist:
Copy of A
Sanctified
Came Back Haunted
1,000,000
March of the Pigs
Piggy
Terrible Lie
Closer
Gave Up
Disappointed
Find My Way
The Great Destroyer
Eraser
Wish
The Hand That Feeds
Head Like a Hole
Encore:
Hurt

 

Setlist & Videos From Billy Corgan’s Show In Chicago At Ravinia Festival

Setlist:
Chicago
Today (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Disarm (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Turn Your Way
As Time Draws Near
For Your Love (Zwan song)
The Rose March (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Perfect (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Let Me Give the World to You (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Follow Me
Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
To Forgive (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Muzzle (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Tonight, Tonight (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Galapogos (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Methuselah
Thirty-Three (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
1979 (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Now (And Then)
The Beginning Is the End Is the Beginning (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
The Crying Tree of Mercury (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Ava Adore (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Pinwheels (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
Stand Inside Your Love (The Smashing Pumpkins song)
(Unknown)
Burnt Orange-Black

Encore:
The World’s Fair
Of a Broken Heart (Zwan song)

Videos:


Purr Snickety (From VIP Pre Show)


Disarm

Video: Scott Weiland Impersonator Pleads Not Guilty At Court Hearing

Scott Weiland impersonator Jason Michael Hurley pleaded not guilty at a court hearing on Tuesday. The judge also officially determined that he’d be going by his real name going forward, and not Scott Weiland. The Scotteldeaner was arrested last month for meth possession and burglary, and fooled the Beverly Hills Police Department for nearly a month into thinking he was Scott Weiland.

Courtney Love Hits Back At Billy Corgan: ‘What Is Your Problem?’

Courtney Love discussed Billy Corgan in a new interview with Paper Magazine:

“The only person I’m concerned about is Corgan [when it comes to past grudges]. I’m like, what is your problem?”

Love’s manager then pointed at the reporter’s recorder on the coffee table.

“You can turn that off now,” he says.

“No,” Love says. “You can say that. I just wish he’d mellow out. That’s all. We’re older. Get over it.”

Hole Reunion Is Back On For 2015

Courtney Love tells Paper Magazine in a new interview that the classic Hole lineup of she, Eric Erlandson, Melissa Auf der Maur and Patty Schemel will play in 2015, and she insists that her strained relationship with the band is a thing of the past. “It’s more important for me to act right now than to play rock ‘n’ roll,” she says. “Me and Melissa and Patty and Eric have rehearsed a few times. In order to pull that off, we’d have to make some music that’s relevant to now, and we’d have to get a modern producer. I’m not going to do the oldies circuit. My relationships with Melissa, Patty and Eric are all great. At this point in my life, no one is my enemy. Any grudges or issues with that past? I’m done with it.”

Pantera’s Phil Anselmo Disses Metallica’s ‘Load’

Philip Anselmo, vocalist for Pantera & Down, recently spoke out negatively about Metallica’s 1996 release, “Load.” In the latest issue of Metal Hammer, Anselmo discussed albums which have affected his life and was asked to name an album that, in his opinion, should have never been released.

“I would have to say ‘Load’ by Metallica. I mean, it’s a terrible record, man. I just don’t get it. If you’re gonna put out a record like that, just do a fucking side project or something, ya know?”

Metallica are currently recording their tenth studio album and plan to release it next year.

Billy Corgan Rips 90’s Bands For ‘Phoning In’ Playing Old Albums: ‘It’s Just Kind Of Funny’

Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan continued his crusade against 90’s alternative rock bands like Soundgarden and Pavement for performing old albums on tour in a new interview with Chicago Now:

“I don’t think it’s popping people like it used to – so and so comes to town and plays classic album number two. I just don’t think it’s getting the charge out of the public because the public acclimates very quickly to these kind of concepts. I still believe at the end of the day that if [people aren’t] coming for genuine reasons, then as an artist you need to figure out why.

I have no problem with people leaning on their past if they’ve earned it. And there’s plenty of bands and artists that have earned it. I just don’t like it when it becomes the story. And for about four years, it’s been the story in alternative music particularly with nineties-era bands. If you could go back in a time machine, can you imagine? ‘Hey, by the way, all you people on MTV: One day you’ll be doing the exact opposite of what you’re saying you’re gonna do.’ It’s just kind of funny. You know what I mean?”

He later said, “And I do meet young musicians, young people ages fifteen to thirty, who want to see me be me today. They get it. They can go on YouTube or whatever and look it all up. But they really want to see what made you you for real. They don’t want to see you kind of half go through the motions to sort of wink and nod at what… They want their own experience. They want their own generational claim. And they’re more than happy to claim you if you’re willing to claim them.

Phoning in a past album I don’t think really does that. That’s not their generation. That’s really their parents’ generation. So they may like it. But they don’t feel close to it. And I think that is a huge difference.”

Foo Fighters Reveal New ‘Sonic Highways’ Snippet

Foo Fighters have released a new eight-second clip from their upcoming album, which can be viewed below.

A week ago, the Foo Fighters revealed the full trailer for their upcoming HBO series Sonic Highways, which will coincide with the release of their new album of the same name. The trailer features a performance of their opening song “Something From Nothing.” Sonic Highways is set for release on November 10th via Roswell/RCA.

Goatwhore Announce 2014 US Tour Dates

Goatwhore has recently finished up touring on the Summer Slaughter tour with Morbid Angel, Dying Fetus, The Faceless, Thy Art is Murder, and more. The death metal group has just announced a string of US tour dates during September and October. Samhain, Kyng, and Midnight have been chosen to open for select dates. You can view the dates below.

Goatwhore tour dates:
9/15 – Fitzgerald’s – Houston, TX
9/16 – Tomcat’s – Ft Worth, TX
9/17 – Launchpad – Albuquerque, NM
9/18 – Club Red – Tempe, AZ
9/19 – The Wiltern – Los Angeles, CA (with Samhain, Kyng)
9/20 – The Warfield – San Francisco, CA (with Samhain, Kyng)
9/21 – Rotture – Portland, OR
9/22 – Crocodile – Seattle, WA
9/24 – Sunshine Studios – Colorado Springs, CO
9/25 – Riot Room – Kansas City, MO
9/26 – The Rev Room – Little Rock, AR
10/29 – Electric Factory – Philadelphia, PA (with Samhain, Midnight)
10/31 – The Howard Theatre – Washington D.C. (with Samhain Midnight)
11/01 – Best Buy Theater – New York, NY (with Samhain, Midnight)

Audioslave & Soundgarden Celebrate Chris Cornell’s 50th Birthday

3/4 of Audioslave reunited at Chris Cornell’s belated 50th birthday party in Los Angeles earlier this week. Cornell’s former Audioslave bandmates Tom Morello and Tim Commerford attended, along with Soundgarden members Kim Thayil and Ben Shepherd, and Cornell’s Euphoria Morning partner Alain Johannes.

See photos below!

Sponsor: Check out Yahoo Live to see concerts every day, including upcoming Aerosmith, Counting Crows, and The Offspring shows.

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Billy Corgan Says Smashing Pumpkins Will Break Up If New Albums Aren’t Successful

Billy Corgan discussed The Smashing Pumpkins’ future in a new interview with the Chicago Tribune.

“I’m not willing to wait around 15 to 20 years to have somebody go, ‘Hey, that album that you made is really good.’ And then sell it to the 7,000 people that are still paying attention.”

“When this process is over, I’m either going to bail on this ship for good, like ‘I’m done,’ or I’m going to have a new ship to sail on,” Corgan said, adding that at a time when everyone walks around looking at phones, he wonders: “How do you reach through the fog as an artist? How do you punch your way back through? How do you say, ‘I still matter’? How do you say, ‘How does one of my contemporaries get treated like a contemporary artist, and how do I get treated like I’m supposed to play “Siamese Dream” for the rest of my life?’ At some point you’ve got to fight this fight or go away.”

Sponsor: Check out Yahoo Live to see concerts every day, including upcoming Aerosmith, Counting Crows, and The Offspring shows.

Original “Angry Chair” From Alice In Chains Music Video Being Sold Online

Somebody is selling the “Angry Chair” from the classic Alice In Chains music video on Craigslist:

For sale, the original ANGRY CHAIR from the famous ALICE IN CHAINS music video for their hit song “angry chair.” that’s right, this is the same angry chair sat in by none other than layne staley! own a piece of rock n roll history!

some background: i was a PA on the video way back when, and after the shoot wrapped, took the chair home. since then, it’s just been sitting in my garage collecting dust. i hate to sell it, but i need to downsize. plus i’m clean now and have two kids, and i’m just not as angry as i used to be.

the chair is perfect for sitting in and just raging out. a few dents, but in otherwise great condition.

$1,500 OBO — if interested, email with your favorite AIC album and why you think you’re angry enough for the chair. money isnt important to me, just want to give the angry chair a good home.

god bless and rock on

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The Offspring To Perform ‘Smash’ In Its Entirety On Yahoo Live, Band Remember Album 20 Years Later

This year The Offspring have been performing Smash in its entirety to mark the 20th anniversary of the album.  Tomorrow (August 30th), fans will get to watch the band’s show in Chula Vista, California on Yahoo Live (via Live Nation) at 9:45PM PST, which you will be able to watch by CLICKING HERE.  Yahoo Live stream concerts every single day, and you can then watch the show on a loop for the next 24 hours.

Below are some recent quotes from Dexter Holland and Noodles looking back at recording Smash and its legacy.

Dexter Holland: We’re out now 20 years later, playing ‘Smash,’ and people are singing along to songs we haven’t played in years, and deep cuts off the record. It’s really lasted. (Source: SFExaminer Interview)

Dexter Holland: [Lyrically on the album I was singing about] girls, guns, gangs, your friend getting on drugs, that kind of stuff.  But because the album was written so quickly, and we weren’t sophisticated enough to use anything more than loud guitars, there’s a cohesiveness to it, I guess. It’s a moment in time, the way some good records are. (Source: SFExaminer Interview)

Noodles: [The 20th anniversary] is weird and it’s hard to actually fathom what that means. So many of those songs have been with us the whole time, so it’s kind of like hanging out with an old friend. You don’t see the aging. So songs like “Self Esteem” and “Come Out and Play” still seem new, because we play them every night. (Source: SevenDays Interview)

Noodles: I didn’t like [the original “Self Esteem” idea] at first, when we first started doing it, then it changed and became “Self Esteem” and I was on board with it, and loved it. (Source: Beez Says Interview)

Dexter Holland: [In “Self Esteem”] the thing where late at night she knocks on my door was real, and practicing all the things you would say was a funny thing that had happened before. (Source: Radio.com Interview)

Noodles: Come Out and Play was the last song written for the record. When I heard ‘Blackball’ on that, I just started cracking up. I loved that immediately. I do remember rehearsing that and kind of working out how to play the main riff over the kind of oriental line, the Middle Eastern riff. (Source: Beez Says Interview)

Dexter Holland: I liked the main riff, but musically it bounces around a lot. The verses are kind of like a rap almost, more spoken than sung. And then there’s that Middle Eastern riff or whatever you want to call it, which is very Southern California, going all the way back to Dick Dale, and we’d messed with some of that stuff in previous records. I guess I was trying to come up with something in a different way, that would grab you with all these elements. (Source: Radio.com Interview)

Noodles: The one thing that I’m really proud of with that record is that we kept it independent throughout the whole cycle, and I think it’s the number 1 selling independent record of all time, and I think it’ll stay that. (Source: Beez Says Interview)

Dexter Holland: When we were in the studio I think there was something going on, we kind of felt like wow, this is a big step up for us. (Source: Beez Says Interview)

Noodles: It’s kind of fun for us [to play the whole album now], and indulgent for us, to do.  Like, ‘Okay, we’re going to do every song on this record, **** you!'” (Source: Beez Says Interview)