All posts by Elias Fulmer

Elias Fulmer, based out of Orange County, CA, plays guitar for the alternative rock band Pappa Midnight. Favorite acts include the Smashing Pumpkins, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Morrissey, Nirvana, Placebo, Jane's Addiction and Nick Drake. You can reach him at eliasprofessionalmode(at)

Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Unreleased 1998 Song “Circle of the Noose” Leaks


Original source of the leaked 1998 mix of “Circle of the Noose”


In the late 1990’s, the Red Hot Chili Peppers were on their last leg with Jane’s Addiction guitarist Dave Navarro. After touring the world for One Hot Minute, the band tried writing and recording new material with Navarro. Until now, nothing from those sessions have ever been leaked. In rare interviews and fan communities, a title, “Circle of the Noose” would surface up. Today, it was leaked to the world by rhcptv5 on Twitter, and posted on YouTube. Commenting on the song’s character, a tribute to qawwali devotional singer Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Navarro recalled in an AllStar 1997 interview that:

“One of the songs we’ve done is the greatest pop song I’ve ever been a part of…It’s pop in the sense of verse, chorus, verse, chorus, bridge, hook. I really love it and we use a loop of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. It’s really nice. The best way I can describe it is it’s like pepped- up ’60s folk with ’90s ideals, but I would hate to label it as folk because it’s not, it moves.”


The song is available below, in the rough mix which has circulated in rare collector’s circles for some time. Artwork credited to Leandro Cabo.

This news of course, occurs right as the Chili Peppers are at “home stretch” with finishing their new album:

Anthony Kiedis discussed Red Hot Chili Peppers’ new album last week on Jonesy’s Jukebox.

“We’re in the home stretch. I sang yesterday, I get a week off, I go back to finish.”

He added, “We’re going to back and listen to the songs, and see if we can beat them.”

“We had written two dozen songs before we got with him. [Producer Danger Mouse] is like, ‘Let’s keep a few of those, but let’s go write all new songs in the studio. We’re looking at each other like, ‘Dude, we kind of already wrote the songs, bro.’ He’s like, ‘No, I like to write new ones in the studio.’ So, in honor of accommodating this new process, we wrote all new songs, and it’s a good thing we did.

Below is my interpretation of what the lyrics of “Circle of the Noose” could be:

Mess me up, makes me cry
Come and see me please
Dragonfly, so I don’t die
In a circle
Break my heart
So I can start

All I need
Is for fun and for free
All I need
All I need

I don’t need it!
Don’t need it!
I don’t need it!

Shoot me up
Shoot me down
Devasation boy
Deal me out, steal my joy
Good for nothing
That’s the one
My mother’s son

All I need
Is for fun and for free
All I need
All I need

I don’t need it!
Don’t need it!
I don’t need it!

In the sun
And the sea
I’m for fun
and for free

Dog’s a-laughing
Laughing now
That I’m no-how
Human uniform
I’m so warm, inside this stone

All I need
Is for fun and for free
All I need
All I need

I don’t need it!
Don’t need it!
I don’t need it!

Human uniform




Morrissey Asian and Caribbean Tour Dates Rumored For April 2016

On True-to-you, a Morrissey fansite and fanzine distributor (as well as Morrissey’s more or less official mouthpiece), reports today that Morrissey and his band are rumored to have some tour dates all along Asia and the Pacific, as well as Puerto Rico and the Venezuelan capital of Caracas for the month of April 2016. It will be the first time Morrissey has visited some of these places, though he has been visited Asian countries like Japan before. Details are as follows:


Negotiations are being finalised for the following Morrissey shows in April 2016:

Bangkok (Thailand)
Saigon (Vietnam)
Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia)
Singapore City (Singapore)
Taipei (Taiwan)
Busan (South Korea)
Seoul (South Korea)
Hagatna (Guam)
Jakarta (Indonesia)
San Juan (Puerto Rico)
Caracas (Venezuela)
Full details are expected shortly.

The Dirty Half Dozen photomontage above by Sam Esty Rayner.
Left to right: Gustavo, Mando, Jesse, Morrissey, Boz, Matteo.

Sam Esty Rayner, for those who don’t know, is Morrissey’s nephew and they have been collaborating more frequently recently and taking much of his recent photography. You can catch his Facebook page with his photography and miscellaneous Morrissey stuff here.

An impressive list is as well, Morrissey’s full tour dates for World Peace is None of Your Business, which he recently finished earlier this month in Las Vegas:

Full List of Dates Played To Promote ‘World Peace is None of Your Business’

6 October 2014, Coliseum, Lisbon, Portugal
9 October 2014, Palacio De Deportes, Madrid, Spain
10 October 2014, Sant Jordi Club, Barcelona, Spain
13 October 2014, Atlantico, Rome, Italy
14 October 2014, Atlantico, Rome, Italy
16 October 2014, Teatro Linear, Milan, Italy
17 October 2014, Paladozza, Bologna, Italy
19 October 2014, Pala Gpii, Pescara, Italy
21 October 2014, Obihall, Florence, Italy
22 October 2014, Geox Theatre, Padova, Italy
24 October 2014, Konzerthaus, Vienna, Austria
27 October 2014, Le Grand Rex, Paris, France
28 October 2014, TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht, Netherlands
5 November 2014, Capitol, Hannover, Germany
8 November 2014, Sparbanken Skåne Arena, Lund, Sweden
9 November 2014, Falconer, Copenhagen, Denmark
11 November 2014, Lisebergshallen, Goteborg, Sweden
13 November 2014, Hovet, Stockholm, Sweden
15 November 2014, Finlandia, Helsinki, Finland
16 November 2014, Finlandia, Helsinki, Finland
19 November 2014, Stodola, Warsaw, Poland
21 November 2014, Laznia Nowa, Krakow, Poland
23 November 2014, Columbiahalle, Berlin, Germany
24 November 2014, Colosseum, Essen, Germany
26 November 2014, Stadsschouwburg, Antwerp, Belgium
27 November 2014, Stadsschouwburg, Antwerp, Belgium
29 November 2014, O2 Arena, London, England
1 December 2014, 3Arena, Dublin, Ireland
10 December 2014, Belexpocentar, Belgrade, Serbia
12 December 2014, Zagreb Fair, Pavilion 9, Zagreb, Croatia
15 December 2014, Tae Kwon Do Arena, Athens, Greece
17 December 2014, VW Arena, Istanbul, Turkey
9 March 2015, De Oosterpoort Main Hall, Groningen, Netherlands
13 March 2015, Capital FM Arena, Nottingham, England
14 March 2015, International Centre, Bournemouth, England
18 March 2015, Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff, Wales
20 March 2015, First Direct Arena, Leeds, England
21 March 2015, SSE Hydro, Glasgow, Scotland
24 March 2015, Odyssey Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland
27 March 2015, Barclaycard Arena, Birmingham, England
29 March 2015, 013, Tilburg, Netherlands
29 April 2015, Razzmatazz, Barcelona, Spain
1 May 2015, SOS 4.8 Festival, Murcia, Spain
26 May 2015, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
27 May 2015, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
30 May 2015, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
31 May 2015, Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
11 June 2015, Saenger Theater, New Orleans, LA, USA
13 June 2015, Symphony Hall, Atlanta, GA, USA
15 June 2015, The Carolina Theatre, Durham, NC, USA
17 June 2015, Echostage, Washington, DC, USA
19 June 2015, Firefly Festival, Dover, DE, USA
20 June 2015, Academy Of Music, Philadelphia, PA, USA
24 June 2015, Hanover Theatre, Worcester, MA, USA
27 June 2015, Madison Square Garden, New York, NY, USA
29 June 2015, Civic, Akron, OH, USA
30 June 2015, Aronoff Center, Cincinnati, OH, USA
3 July 2015, Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, TN, USA
8 July 2015, Masonic Temple, Detroit, MI, USA
9 July 2015, Civic Opera House, Chicago, IL, USA
11 July 2015, Center For Performing Arts, Bloomington, IL, USA
13 July 2015, Fitzgerald Theater, St. Paul, MN, USA
16 July 2015, Red Rocks, Denver, CO, USA
18 July 2015, Depot, Salt Lake City, UT, USA
21 July 2015, Benaroya Hall, Seattle, WA, USA
23 July 2015, Edgefield, Troutdale, OR, USA
25 July 2015, Event Center, San Jose, CA, USA
20 August 2015, The Observatory North Park, San Diego, CA, USA
21 August 2015, The Observatory North Park, San Diego, CA, USA
23 August 2015, FYF, Los Angeles, CA, USA
29 August 2015, Fox Theatre, Visalia, CA, USA
15 September 2015, Plymouth Pavilions, Plymouth, England
18 September 2015, Hull Arena, Hull, England
20 September 2015, Eventim Apollo, London, England
21 September 2015, Eventim Apollo, London, England
24 September 2015, Olympia, Paris, France
28 September 2015, AB, Brussels, Belgium
30 September 2015, Hugenottenhalle, Neu-Isenburg, Germany
1 October 2015, Palladium, Cologne, Germany
4 October 2015, Le Metropole, Lausanne, Switzerland
7 October 2015, Teatro Augusteo, Naples, Italy
8 October 2015, Carisport, Cesena, Italy
10 October 2015, Hala Tivoli, Ljubljana, Slovenia
12 October 2015, Millenaris Teatrum, Budapest, Hungary
14 October 2015, Sala Palatului, Bucharest, Romania
16 October 2015, SRC Kale, Skopje, Macedonia
7 November 2015, Teatro Nacional Casa De La Cultura, Quito, Ecuador
11 November 2015, Movistar Arena, Santiago, Chile
14 November 2015, Primavera Fauna, Santiago, Chile
17 November 2015, Teatro Renault, Sao Paulo, Brazil
21 November 2015, Citibank Hall, Sao Paulo, Brazil
24 November 2015, Citibank Hall, Rio, Brazil
29 November 2015, Net Live, Brasilia, Brazil
6 December 2015, Yacht Y Golf Club, Asuncion, Paraguay
9 December 2015, Teatro Opera Allianz, Buenos Aires, Argentina
10 December 2015, Luna Park, Buenos Aires, Argentina
17 December 2015, Teatro De Verano, Montevideo, Uruguay
19 December 2015, Parque De La Exposicion, Lima, Peru
29 December 2015, The Masonic, San Francisco, CA, USA
31 December 2015, Galen Center, Los Angeles, CA, USA
2 January 2016, The Joint, Las Vegas, NV, USA


smashing pumpkins corgan

Smashing Pumpkins, Jane’s Addiction & Guns N’ Roses Members Coming To Anaheim

The National Association of Music Merchants, as described on their site, is a ” not-for-profit association that promotes the pleasures and benefits of making music and strengthens the $17 billion global music products industry.” NAMM annually and famously holds a convention yearly in Anaheim, California, the largest trade-only event pertaining to music industry. As you might imagine, there’s usually a few stars attending. There’s hundreds of vendors and booths, but for AlternativeNation readers we found some names of interest attending their 2016 convention, January 21st-24th, 2016.

Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins will be there Thursday at the Reverend booths signing autographs celebrating the release of his new Reverend guitar model. Jim Fairchild of Modest Mouse will be showcasing his use of Red Panda pedals Thursday as well. The Audix Corporation will be hosting a Drummer Extravaganza and Stephen Perkins is part of a huge team of drummers at attendence for that booth. Juan Alderete of the Mars Volta will be a participant in several events, such as Red Panda pedal demonstrations, autograph signing, a EarthQuaker demonstration with his bass guitar, the latter two event occurring Friday. The EarthQuaker demonstration with Alderete will also occur Saturday.

Ron Saint Germain, who produced Sonic Youth’s Goo as well as several Bad Brains and 311 albums, will also be in attendance in a demonstration with Lynx Studio Technology, Inc. He has also worked with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Tool, Soundgarden, U2, Killing Joke and yes, Jimi Hendrix. Richie Ramone, one of the only living Ramones, will be at the Los Cabos Drumsticks booth on Saturday. DJ Ashba and Nikki Sixx, of Guns n’ Roses and Motley Crue fame, will be at the Korg booth with the Sixx A.M. bandmate James Michael for autographs. For more information on exhibitions, see here.

Pearl Jam Announce 2016 U.S. Tour Dates

Earlier this morning, Pearl Jam posted a tour announcement on their website:

“Pearl Jam announced today that they will perform a series of North American concert dates between April and August of 2016.

A special ticket pre-sale drawing for all dates except the festival and stadium dates starts today for current Ten Club members (as of Monday, January 18th). Memberships purchased after Monday, January 18th are not eligible for the Ten Club pre-sale drawing for any of the shows listed below including the shows in Boston and Chicago. “



The website also notes that all dates are subject to change. The exact performance date and time at Bonnaroo will be announced at a later time, as well as ticket information regarding the dates at Fenway Park and Wrigley Field. However, tickets for the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Fest are on sale and now and the tickets for Bonnaroo go on sale this friday.

These tour date announcements come out of the recent rumors of tour dates announcements, as reported earlier this week by Jeremy Neugebauer :

Pearl Jam have basically teased again what they have been teasing since late last year by announcing on their Facebook page and Twitter that a tour announcement is coming soon.

As far back as October Alternative Nation has been reporting the following tour dates, however a headlining stint at the Bonnaroo Festival has been rumored to be replacing the Nashville date and Canadian radio station 101.5 The Wolf announced a contest to win tickets to a performance in Toronto on Tuesday, May 10th, so the rumored dates below may vary a bit. With the Bonnaroo announcement coming January 18th on Conan, Pearl Jam’s announcement may coincide with the Bonnaroo announcement (antsy Pearl Jam fans are hoping anyway).

Rumored Pearl Jam 2016 Tour Dates from October:
4/8 Ft Lauderdale
4/9 Miami
4/11 Tampa
4/13 Jacksonville
4/15 Atlanta
4/16 Nashville
4/18 Columbia SC
4/20 Charlotte
4/21 Raleigh
4/23 Lexington
4/26 Pittsburgh
4/28&29 Philly
5/1&2 NYC
5/5 Buffalo
5/6 Albany or Hartford
5/8 Quebec
5/10 Ottawa
5/11 Montreal
5/13&14 Toronto

Hear all the best live, rare, and greatest hits from Pearl Jam at and




Foo Fighters & Smashing Pumpkins Unite To Honor David Bowie: A Birthday Celebration

The passing of David Bowie, in the succession of the deaths of Scott Weiland and Lemmy, continue to devastate the hearts of millions if not billions of fans. These three figures, who in total have contributed thousands of songs to the human discography, are sorely missed not only on their creative output but they were massive figures bursting with integrity.

David Bowie, who stepped into the world of alternative rock to prop up and support acts who became some of alternative rock’s most popular acts, like Placebo, had an unprecedented influence on the genre’s development. His work in general, with albums like Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust and Diamond Dogs inspired figures like Cobain, Corgan and Farrell, but this all goes without saying. Bowie’s influence bleeds through culture in a blatant and now tragic way.

One thing not always brought up, however, is one of the greatest gatherings of popular musicians, I dare say, of all time. On January 9th, 1997 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, David Bowie hosted a concert for his fiftieth birthday with a surreal lineup. What’s very admirable about Bowie is that he often reached out to people directly influenced by him first, instead of the other way around.

As seen in our featured photo, you can make Bowie surrounded by figures such as Robert Smith of the Cure, Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins, Dave Grohl of Nirvana and the Foo Fighters (as well as Pat Smear), Brian Molko and Stefan Olsdal of Placebo and more. To celebrate his birthday, Bowie invited many of his friends and admirers.


The European alternative rock band Placebo opened for the show. They were touring for their self titled album and were discovered by Bowie and in the late ’90s and became his opening act for several months. He would sing on their sophomore album Without You I’m Nothing on the eponymous track. After opening with some songs from his then recently released album, Earthlings, like “Little Wonder,” he brought out his first guest: Frank Black of the Pixies. Together they performed “Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) from the selfsame titled album. They also performed “Fashion” together, from the same album.

In 1997, the Foo Fighters were flying high on the scene after Nirvana’s demise. No doubt, Bowie was aware of Nirvana’s cover of his song “The Man Who Sold the World.” He even performed at this show with his backing band. One would wonder though, if Cobain had lived if he would have been invited to perform with him. However, the Foo Fighters were invited to play “Hallo Spaceboy,” a song from the 1995 Outside album, with Bowie. They offered a thunderous rendition of the song. Bowie (vocals as well as guitar) and Grohl afterwards would perform the electronic tinged “Seven Years in Tibet” together. “Under Pressure” in later years, would become a staple of the Foo Fighters’ live set.

Sonic Youth, the noise rock band which also had a tremendous air within alternative rock circles, were present to perform and celebrate with Bowie, playing his newest single “I’m Afraid of Americans,” which featured production stylings from Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails. Bowie, never afraid to move forward. Below is also included Nine Inch Nails with David Bowie re-orchestrating “Hurt” in 1995, later covered famously by Johnny Cash.

After these performances, David Bowie delivered his hits “Heroes” and “The Man Who Sold the World” with his backing band. Robert Smith from the Cure, emerged from the darkness of backstage to share two songs with Bowie: “The Last Thing You Should Do” and “Quicksand,” though he wanted to do “Young Americans.”

One of the most prominent figures from Bowie’s past, another one of rock’s figures who favored collaboration with admirers, his friend and creative partner Lou Reed joined him on stage for four songs. The two worked on Reed’s album “Transformer” together, which swept the world in storm. The songs they did together that night were “Queen Bitch”, a Lou Reed song “Dirty Blvd” and two songs from Lou Reed’s first major band, the Velvet Underground: “White Light/White Heat” and “Waiting for the Man.” Those latter two songs were frequently covered by Bowie in his past. “Waiting for the Man” was particularly marvelous, with alternating lead vocals from the two. This performance has been a favorite of mine for a long time. It’s nice to revisit and sad to see these figures leave this world.

In 1997, the following song would already have a sentimental and memorial connotation associated with it, Freddie Mercury having passed away a few years before. The duet is shared with his bassist at the time, American bassist Gail Ann Dorsey.

He closed his set with the Ziggy Stardust track, “Moonage Daydream” and seemingly ended the concert with band introductions. The backing band consisted of Reeves Gabrels on guitar, Mike Garson on keyboards (who also worked with the Pumpkins in later years), Zach Alford on drums and Gail Ann Dorsey on bass.

However, as with most great things there is an encore. After an aptly deserved “Happy Birthday!” from Dorsey, some more music emerged. For the encore, Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins, a huge Bowie fan, joined Bowie on stage for “The Jean Genie” and Mott the Hopple’s “All the Young Dudes,” written by Bowie in the early ’70s. In introducing Corgan, Bowie uttered his famous quote, “I don’t know where I’m going from here but I promise it won’t be boring.” The encore was ended with “Space Oddity” which would be covered by the Smashing Pumpkins during their Oceania tour.

Bowie’s death is as sudden as it is grave. I found out coming out of the Primus and Tool concert in San Diego on their latest tour. It hit me the next day and it hit me very hard and at once. While listening to “Teenage Wildlife,” I became incredibly upset and my eyes followed suit. I felt an embrace and goodbye. What I wrote on my band’s page is the only thing that I can really manage to say about his passing:

David Bowie has died and reborn for the last time, as he did hundreds of times during his lifetime. From the Thin White Duke to Ziggy Stardust to Blackstar – Bowie has always been reborn and died, we tend to forget. This time, it just hits us a bit harder because his consistently ever-changing body and essence has gone to its biggest rebirth, a union with the universe. As he ever was, Bowie exists in all of us. He exists in our courage and our engendered ability to face ourselves, to be ourselves no matter what people tell us. And people do change. His music encompasses a lot, but one thing that has always stood out to me is the spirit of bravery – encouraging people to experience the most of life to better themselves and to grow. To dance, to wander in space, to live as teenage wildlife, to be heroes and in the indefinite final acts and climaxes: to be reborn as Lazarus when Jesus gave life back to him in Lazarus’ miraculous resurrection, the utmost compassionate act we can accept to give ourselves as life continues to shape and challenge us. In embracing his deep lessons, Bowie will be continue to be reborn thousands and thousands of times more.

Rest in peace, Blackstar



Weezer Announce New ‘White’ Album, Release New Song “King of the World”

On Twitter just now, Weezer announced yet another self titled album. For the album, they announced a co-headlining tour with Panic! At the Disco and another track from the album, “King of the World.” The new album will be released on April 1st. Apparently, this isn’t a joke. This is their “White” album, along with the self titled Red (2008) , Green (2001) and Blue (1994) albums.

Another two tracks from the album, “Do You Wanna Get High” and “Thank God for Girls” were leaked in the fourth quarter of 2015. Below is their single and music video, “King of the World”:

Here’s what I think about Weezer and Rivers Cuomo:

Weezer are one of the most confusing acts in rock. At one point seen as alternative, at one point (pop) punk, and at another purely ironic, but what is Weezer? I think I learned what Weezer is, but it’s not so simple to explain, so here are 1,000 words.

Weezer was one of the my seminal bands growing up, both as a person and a musician. My first band at 14 was founded on, among other things, on a common appreciation of Weezer. It’s an exciting time to be a Weezer fan because the new album, Everything Will Be Alright in The End, holds up to the classic Weezer formula, reinventing their sound while sticking close to their roots of emotional integrity and intensity, and staying strong in spirit. Their latest albums, Hurley and Raditude, exhibited Weezer’s most radical departures from their half-comforting, half-self-depreciating muse established by Cuomo in favor more tongue-in-cheek hedonist songs resulting from collaborations of Cuomo with other artists, ranging from Lil Wayne, hit songwriters Desmond Child and Mac Davis, and various producers from distinct genres, a pattern of artistic creation that compromises of most of the songwriting credits for the Hurley and Raditude albums. Everything Will Be Alright in The End also features some artistic collaborations from other artists, but the collaborations plays second to the material composed by Cuomo and the other Weezer members.

This show, at Santa Ana’s Observatory, was extremely packed. The line rounded through the parking lot, and I managed to slip in conveniently through the front with my press and photo pass. No opener, but it was a good hour before Rivers emerged. Most interesting was Rivers’ nonchalant carousing through the bar and surrounding area. Some people in the crowd shouted, “Rivers!”, but to no response, to anyone. I even walked with Rivers for a minute trying to get him to say a word. He didn’t say anything. I politely told him how influential his music was to me growing up, and then decided to leave him alone. He recognized me in the same way a mime blankly half-looks at passer-byers. As the tour program lists Cuomo’s name simply as “Sebastian – Lead vocals, guitars,” Cuomo’s appearance was consistent with the ironic anonymity he was trying to surround the tour with. Of course, when on stage it was clearly Rivers in classic fashion.

Shortly after 9PM, Cuomo came on to start the promised 9 song acoustic set. At first it was just Cuomo onstage, opening the show with obscure Pinkerton B-side, ‘You Gave Your Love To Me Softly,’ a perfect choice to start with. At the second song, ‘Why Bother?’, guitarist Brian Bell joined stage, sharing lead vocals with Rivers interchangeably with the verses. Next was bassist Scott Shriner, who sang lead vocals on the Red album bonus track ‘King,’ the next song they performed. Drummer Patrick Wilson emerged for the fourth track, Pinkerton classic ‘El Scorcho.’ During their performance of the last track from Maladroit, ‘December,’ which Cuomo seemed to think no one in the crowd had ever heard of.  To my pleasure, they played a lot of my favorites, but ‘Pink Triangle’ was a highlight, as I’ve always wanted to see that song performed live. Dreams do come true (but ‘Only in Dreams’).

The acoustic set was very poignant, closing with staple single now over 20 years old, ‘Buddy Holly’. The band’s chemistry is very tighly knit – as each time a member arrived on stage the show escalated. The vocal parts were largely shared and harmonized, though Cuomo was obviously lead.

After their acoustic set, they performed their new album in entirely, all 13 tracks. During the songwriting process, over 200 songs were considered for the album and the tracklisting they chose is near perfect. The performance crescendoed emotionally as the show went on. ‘Back to the Shack,’ the album’s triumphant lead single, surprisingly had much of the crowd singing along (although large screens had been set up to play pre-recorded footage and displaying lyrics). The crowd seemed to consist largely of committed fans, especially considering the high price of tickets and how fast they initially sold out. ‘The British Are Coming’ also stood out as one of the night’s best and most articulate performances, a humorous yet melodic take on the American Revolution: ‘Punk ass redcoats trying to run the show/Telling me what to do and where to go/Mount your horse ’cause it’s time to tell the world.’ My favorite track from the new album, ‘Go Away’, features Best Coast singer Bethany Cosentino and her vocal presence onstage, combined with the melancholy tone of Cuomo during the song made for a bittersweet performance. The crowd reacted to the new album set as well, if not better, than the acoustic set. Weezer proved themselves to be as musically versatile as they were in 1994, but obviously now far more mature.

Emerging with a cowboy hat, Cuomo urged the crowd to draw up noise as the encore came on, a stunning and roaring performance of ‘The Greatest Man That Ever Lived (Variations on a Shaker Hymn),’ one of the Red album’s most recognizable hits. Cuomo performed the song with his signature, and now well aged, Sonic Blue Warmoth custom Stratocaster with a tortoise pickguard and covered in stickers, the same used during the Blue album sessions. After their jubilant encore, they retreated backstage after a bow.

I’ve had many friends see Weezer and tell me how much of a delightful experience it was for them and I must say, though some of my personal experiences in the Observatory last night were frustrating, their performance was spotless and their crowd interactions were numerous, funny and memorable. It was a privilege and honor to see one of my greatest musical inspirations in such an exclusive setting. God bless Weezer.


Billy Corgan Compares Political Correctness To Julius Caesar & The Roman Empire

Late last year we reported Chicago television personality and spiritual author Jennifer Weigel would have a conversation with Billy Corgan as a part of her series on conversation with significant cultural figures and spirituality. The interview took place December 15th and as Weigel personally responded to me with, the interview would be up this week and finally has surfaced. A two hour event, the first hour mainly consisting of Corgan and Weigel covering a number of different but inter-related topics, including but not limited to Donald Trump, social media, Corgan’s creative process, American and international politics, Corgan’s spiritual influences and much more. The second hour consisted of a dialogue with audience members. Below, we include selected portions of the conversation divided into multiple parts by topic, transcribed exclusively here at Alternative Nation. (All citations are my own)

What Guru Do You Relate With?

JW: “Speaking of gurus and spiritual masters, is there a particular person you’ve read recently that you really resonated with? Whether it be someone decades or thousands of years ago or current?”

BC: “Lately I’ve been reading a lot of Hare Krishna related literature and in the magicaly things that happen when you cast [the question], ‘Is there something here for me to read or understand?’ I wrote my ex-girlfriend a letter, a man who actually grew up in Highland Park just up the road where I live, Radhanath Swami  I think is his spiritual name, unbeknown to me he was actually giving a lecture in Highland Park and I had no idea. Anyway I bought a book by him [The Journey Home: Autobiography of an American Swami] about  how he became a wandering sadhu in India at the age of 19. Which as you can imagine at the time is pretty unusual. 19 year old kid runs around through the forest with loincloth and a beggar’s bowl. Anyway, so he became a Hare Krishna devotee and I wrote her this letter of things I wanted to address that reading this book made me think we needed to clear the air, more for mine than hers. She wrote back saying, ‘It’s so funny I’m reading the exact same book.’ [audience laughs] It’s pretty good, and she lives in Australia so, it’s pretty good…Again, truth [according to] the Hare Krishna doctrine, or the Vedic idea, is pantheistic to the sense they believe there is only one god and all the other deities, whether it’s Ganesh or Rama, whoever are expressions of God. So there is nothing that I read as someone who was raised Catholic…in the Vedic religion that is at odds with whether or not I believe in Jesus Christ. Because under that thinking there’s many masters and they’re all leading you to the same Valhalla [word unclear].

Who in the World Has it Right?

JW: “As you were raised Cathoic, you’re a fan of Jesus Christ but also Buddha and a lot of leaders…”

BC: “And the Beatles!” [audience laughs]

JW: “And the Beatles and David Bowie! With that in mind and seeing how so many people mess up and kill over religion, does it make you scared or do you just want to move to Canada? I mean right now, who do you think is doing it right? Where, if anywhere, on the globe, if you could choose anywhere? Because I mean I remember we had a conversation and you were like, ‘I’m moving to France!’ and that was before the Paris Attacks. Where do you think they got it right?”

BC: “Nowhere. I think we’ve entered an age where this is a global issue. If you believe in the conspiracy end of it which is there is a conscious move of the ‘robber barons’ of the world, the gross capitalists, to turn our world into one big shopping mall…so if you believe in the conspiracy we are being moved some would say quite deliberately into a global system, especially with recent treaties like the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnersihp or [The Paris Agreement] …if you believe in these ideas than this is the manifestation of the global conversation. Which is obviously at odds with the American hegemony that we sort of dictate how it all rolls. So going back to a spiritual tangent, this is not about trigger words and safe spaces. This is about who calls the shots and whether the tribal nature of humanity [sic].

For example: ‘I’m a proto-lesbian feminist dadada…’ or ‘I’m a French nationalist’ or ‘I am from Chicago’…if you believe in tribalism which is very much beyond race and is more a culture of choice, though some would argue with that. Then what you’re saying is that people are willingly going to set aside their tribal loyalty to get out of the way for someone they don’t know, who has a different belief system or system of justice or whatever. Now it’s easier to put if you’re a fan of the Philadelphia Eagles and you can undestand why someone fronts up on somebody for wearing their jersey and their team is ‘better than yours,’ well is it going to be any different when the guy from Kurdistan thinks his way of life is better than yours? So from the spiritual quotient it’s going to be: ‘how do we align in a way that is progressive and not destructive?’ Because generally when humanity comes across these criss-cross points of ‘my way or your way’, it gets violent. One only needs Gibbons’ ‘History of the Roman Empire’ to see what I’m talking about, which maps out a thousand years of ‘Hey, Visigoths, get off my land.’ In fact, there was a thing on the BBC website the other day about they recently found a Roman battlefield. They knew of the battle because it had been written about in Julius Caesar’s time…

JW: “Where did they find the battlefield?”

BC: “I think in the Netherlands. So now because of satellite mapping they can see things they have never found before. So they know where this is where the battle took place…essentially what happened was, the Romans tended to operate on temperate climates. So basically their empire was spread through the Mediterrean up through England, because the weather was dealable and they let all the ‘crazy’ people live up north where it was cold. Occassionally when they would get out of control or they [the Roman Empire] didn’t like what they were doing, they said ‘Get in line!’ and it would go back and forth. Well there was a situation when somebody up there got a little too out of hand and they went up, the Romans sent a bunch of stuff up there and they [the Tencteri and Usipetes tribestribes] said, ‘Okay, we’re going to surrender, we give up. You’re right.’ Julius Caesar ordered them all killed. They wiped out between 150,000 and 200,000 people. Imagine what that was like 2,000 years ago. My point is that history dictates he or she who has the leverage is going to use it. A PC (politically correct) argument is not going to get someone to stop when its in their self interest, their tribal self interest, to wipe you out. It’s a human condition, which you could argue is hardwired in the human animal brain. I’m not here to argue for or against but if you take as a precept and history seems to dictate that, well, we have never not done that.

The Love Child: Celebrating Andrew Wood on His 50th Birthday

“Hey Mr. Lovedog
You will always be
The one back home that could’ve had it all
Hey Mr. Lovedog
You never really knew me
God bless your velvet gifted soul
Makes no sense at all
Now you’re the Holy Roller
With the hub cap diamond star halo
This is goodbye to Captain Hi-top
Hope your Pearl jam
Can keep it strong”

– Mr. Love Dog by Faster Pussycat

Today marks the fiftieth birthday of Malfunkshun and Mother Love Bone singer and lyricist, Andrew Patrick Wood. Known by so many names, L’Andrew, The Love Child, the “Man of Golden Words,” the mythology that envelopes his character is larger than life. Born in Columbus, Mississippi on January 8th, 1966, he would find his voice and legacy in the budding music scene in Seattle and the surrounding areas from the early ’80’s until March 19th, 1990. Wood died from complications regarding a hemorrhage aneurysm, after falling into a coma from a heroin overdose on March 16th, 1990. Wood was let off of life support three days later. At the time, Mother Love Bone, his current project that was attracting all kinds of label attention, was to drop their first album, Apple, on Mercury Records. Due to Wood’s passing, the remaining bandmates opted to postpone the album release until four months after his death, on July 19th, 1990. Tragically, it gained extremely positive feedback from major press outlets.

It’s a strange thing that happens with music sometimes. It was only through the death of founding member and guitarist of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Hillel Slovak, that the band made their connection with guitarist and songwriter John Frusciante that changed the faces of multiple genres with albums like Blood Sugar Sex Magik and Californication. One in 1988 at the news of Slovak’s death might think the Chili Peppers are just over for sure – because their music was intertwined with the friendship and camaraderie between the band members. But the destiny of art seems to propel vision beyond death – in the wake up of Andrew Wood’s death, both Temple of the Dog and Pearl Jam were founded. Those two groups, but especially the latter, continued to have a masterful impact on music in a way not unlike Andrew Wood’s artistry, especially with the inclusion of his friends Chris Cornell and Matt Cameron, and his bandmates Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament.

Wood’s music was very radically different in terms of instrumentation than some of the other bands in the “Seattle scene” at the time. Compare a song like “This is Shangrila” to Nirvana’s “Negative Creep” or Soundgarden’s “Flower.” But the common line is the burst of integrity these bands possessed. These “grunge” bands started purely out of a love for music they admired and rarely much less, because there was not very much opportunity for Northwest artists at the time to see any real fame or success with music, outside of cover bands who played twangy rock at bars. Jimi Hendrix before grunge was the only exception to the rule, only because he moved to the other side of the world, England, to finally achieve his fortune and legacy as, well, Jimi Hendrix.

Wood entered the music scene officially Easter Sunday 1980, when him and his brother Kevin started their first band, Malfunkshun, with Dave Rees and Dave Hunt. Eventually Regan Hagar, a drummer from a band named Maggot Brains, was eventually recruited as the other members cycled out and Malfunkshun became the legendary backyard power trio of the desolate quasi-suburbs of Bainbridge Island, Washington. Drawing influence primarily from glam rock and KISS, they stood out from many of their contemporaries who drew from punk or Black Sabbath. They managed to find a spot on the C/Z Records compilation, Deep Six, featuring bands like the Melvins, the U-Men and Soundgarden, the other original members of the Seattle music scene of the 1980’s. Sub Pop, who was more focused on more “indie and edgy” music, never approached the band on the grounds of their influences.

Malfunkshun regularly played shows from 1980 through about 1987, though Andrew Wood’s rehab visit in 1985 led to a hiatus for Malfunkshun. While never really breaking up, Wood and Hagar starting jamming with the guitarist and bassist from Green River, Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament. Though Wood conceded that their respective bands represented a different kind of ethos, Malfunkshun being a “T-Rex” band and Green River being a “Stooges” band, the “melting pot,” as Wood put it, ended up working very well. Disinterest and subsequent inactivity with their former bands, with new projects in the Seattle scene emerging, both led to the permanent freezing of Green River and Malfunkshun. Mother Love Bone was formed from out of the impromptu cover band Lords of the Wasteland consisting of Wood, Hagar, Gossard and Ament. Somewhere between 1987 and 1988, Hagar was replaced by Greg Gilmore, the drummer from Skin Yard, which featured famed Seattle producer Jack Endino on guitar. Green River’s other guitarist, Bruce Fairweather, was also added as an additional guitarist.

Generally speaking, Mother Love Bone became Seattle’s first supergroup. Malfunkshun, Green River and Skin Yard were all very locally established acts with dedicated fanbases. When they hit the scene, whether people were elated, sad at the break ups of former bands, angry or confused – they were garnering some form of attention. Within a year, the band was signed to the Stardog subsidiary of Mercury Records (owned by PolyGram) and put out their first effort, the Shine EP. Record sales shot up and the band went on tour around the United States, covering territory like Texas, California and the furthest reaches of Massachusetts, opening for English rock band Dogs D’Amour at certain dates. In 1989 they also released their first single, a cover of Argent’s “Hold Your Head Up,” separate from the 2014 Record Store Day re-release.

At the time, Andrew Wood was dating Xana La Fuente, the muse of such songs like “Stargazer”, off of their debut and final album Apple. No one was truly able to stop Wood from doing what he would do, but Xana tried to steer his creative efforts away from inspirations like drugs and discouraged their use. But Wood, La Fuente and their immediate friends like Demri Parrott, the on and off girlfriend of Layne Staley, all explored and dabbled with hard drugs like heroin at one point or another. Their arguments became slump but the help was always there. Wood allegedly went through rehab again during Mother Love Bone’s inception and was clean off of heroin for some time.

“She’d have to tie me to the ceiling
A bad moon’s a comin’ better say your prayers child
I wanna tell that I love you but does it really matter you?
I just can’t stand to see you dragging down again
Again my baby I’m here, oh yeah, so I’m singing”

– “Crown of Thorns” by Mother Love Bone


Andy Wood, a My Little Pony figurine and Xana La Fuente circa 1987/1988

One persistent theme of Wood’s life was stardom. He always, always wanted to be a big star. He built his stage personality from his first days in Malfunkshun and continued to build it as he fronted Mother Love Bone through the end of the eighties. To him, it was everything. When digging deep into archives and interviews regarding his character, that seems to be the one universal characteristic of Wood by everyone who knew him. Call it silly, a pipe dream, whatever – but he took whatever he got with it and ran as fast as he could. We was the culmination of all his idols – KISS, Marc Bolan of T-Rex and the hardest of ’70s rock. Hell, he even maintained a “KISS shrine” in his youth. He was about to pave a new road for hard rock, for his beloved term “love rock,” but it wasn’t meant to be.


Wood spent three days in the hospital and was doing well progressively in the first 24 hours, but his condition got worse with time. Evidently, 10 hours of nurse notes are missing. When the notes resume, he was braindead. Indeed, they are certain speculations on how certain medicines affected his body. Chris Cornell flew in from New York to wish Andy goodbye, with family and Xana at the hospital bed. His funeral was held at the legendary Paramount Theatre in Seattle, of which family, friends and fans sat in. Cornell recalls a story after the funeral:

“Sitting in Kelly Curtis’ living room with about 30 people, all sobbing. We had just come from Andy Wood’s extra weird funeral-wake thing at the Paramount Theatre. It had these new age overtones that didn’t fit Andy’s life at all. There was an amazing film of Andy with Mother Love Bone band mates. All of Andy’s friends and family were there, mixed with a bunch of fans who I didn’t like but knew Andy would have loved. The fans went home. His friends went to Kelly’s.

We were crammed in a smallish living room with people sitting on every available surface. Couch arms, end tables, the floor. I was leaning on the back of one of the couches that face away from the rest of the room and toward the front door. I remember Andy’s girlfriend looking at everyone and saying “This is just like La Bamba” then suddenly I heard slapping footsteps growing louder and louder as they reached the front door and Layne flew in, completely breaking down and crying so deeply that he looked truly frightened and lost. Very child like. He looked up at everyone at once and I had this sudden urge to run over and grab him and give him a big hug and tell him everything was going to be OK. Kelly has always had a way of making everyone feel like everything will turn out great. That the world isn’t ending. That’s why we were at his place. I wanted to be that person for  Layne, maybe just because he needed it so bad. I wasn’t. I didn’t get up in front of the room and offer that and I still regret it. No one else did either. I don’t know why.”



While on tour in Europe with his band Soundgarden, Cornell, depressed over Wood’s death, wrote the songs that would become “Say Hello 2 Heaven” and “Reach Down.” Not Soundgarden-esque material, he presented it to Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament and they expressed interest in recording the songs as a tribute to Andy. Initially planned as a single and b-side, the jam sessions brought forth a full album worth of material. Mike McCready, a childhood friend of Gossard was brought into the sessions and Eddie Vedder, who had just moved from San Diego, California, sat in on the sessions and eventually found his way as backing vocals. Matt Cameron sat in for drums and Temple of the Dog was born, the namesake from a lyric of Mother Love Bone’s song “Man of Golden Words.” From the sessions, Pearl Jam began their career with each other as they auditioned Vedder around the time of Temple of the Dog’s recording. Alice in Chain’s famous single “Would?”, was also given to his legacy, as the band was friends with Wood and played several shows with Mother Love Bone. Alice in Chain’s debut album Facelift was also dedicated to Andrew Wood and Jerry’s Cantrell’s mother. Ironically, both Vedder and Wood are Capricorns. Wood’s Moon is in Leo and Vedder’s is in Virgo, in exact astrological succession. Neat huh?

Candlebox’s “Far Behind” was also penned in Wood’s memory

Wood’s music and artistry is forever connected to so many memories for me. I’m incredibly grateful for the time he spent here down from Olympus. My friend actually was almost named Chloe by her father, after “Chloe Dancer.” Love rock will always have a special place in my life. Somewhere from Mount Olympus, Andy Wood is looking down and the legacy and music he spawned from beyond the grave. He wrote, “Dreams like this must die,” but they would not.

PS: Slipknot’s Corey Taylor recently covered “Chloe Dancer” in concert recently and made a medley of Prince’s “Little Red Corvette.” Completely unexpected…but lovely.



Billy Corgan’s Book ‘God is Everywhere, From Here To There’ Is Over 1,000 Pages Long

Late last year we reported Chicago television personality and spiritual author Jennifer Weigel would have a conversation with Billy Corgan as a part of her series on conversation with significant cultural figures and spirituality. The interview took place December 15th and as Weigel personally responded to me with, the interview would be up this week and finally has surfaced. A two hour event, the first hour mainly consisting of Corgan and Weigel covering a number of different but inter-related topics, including but not limited to Donald Trump, social media, Corgan’s creative process, American and international politics, Corgan’s spiritual influences and much more. The second hour consisted of a dialogue with audience members. Below, we include selected portions of the conversation divided into multiple parts by topic, transcribed exclusively here at Alternative Nation. (All citations are my own)

Billy’s Books

JW: “How’s your book coming?”

BC: “Slow.”

JW: “What, you got like five books worth of stuff? [Corgan nods yes] Why don’t you do volumes? I mean, does it have to be all in one?…”

BC: “I can’t talk about in that way right now, but yeah right now it turns out to be about a thousand pages.”

JW: “What’s it called now, has it changed?”

BC: “The current title is God is Everywhere, From Here To There.”

JW: “Now it’s a memoir but you’re changing the names to protect the not-so-innocent?”

BC: “Yeah, no real names, I’ve talked about that in interviews. I mean yes, the average person will be able to go, ‘Oh yeah that’s so-and-so.’ But it’s not meant to be a legal device, it’s meant to get you out of what you think you know and take you hopefully in the very interpersonal experience which I experienced. Which, I would argue, is mythology. Most of what I have experienced in my life isn’t real.”

Corgan once a website with a very similar to the same tentative title as his book, Everything from Here to There. Below is the welcome letter, as the domain is long extinct and inactive:

Hello, many blessings to you for visiting Everything From Here to There.

The purpose of this website is to discuss openly and without fear concepts of Mind-Body-Soul integration. If you are drawn to the Hidden Truths, drawn to God as something beyond limitation, and drawn to Love as the greatest force in the Universe, then you have come to the right place at the right time. This is a place of Love.

In discussing Mind-Body-Soul integration within the context of holistic Truth, many topics will be explored here that may be new to you. Like any good tree that one would hope to grow, we must set our roots deep into the ground so that what is real will prosper in the Light of Love.

This site is non-denominational, we promote no religion, and if we speak of any belief or faith system it won’t be at the expense of another. That is not to avoid the obvious. Most of the citizens of this planet put their faith in someone or something. This website respects every belief and every faith as an expression of God’s greater Will.

This is not a place of judgment, nor a place of making proof. We begin with the idea that there is a God. We begin with the undying belief that there is a unifying intelligence that manifests itself in Every-thing. Even if you don’t believe in God, exploring fully the idea of a God or Gods should pose no threat to you. The idea of a higher collective intelligence or consistent organizing principle should be worth contemplating no matter what you believe in (or don’t believe in). For who is God if not Us?

Mind-Body-Soul integration is the primary focus of this site, and how it can best manifest in our daily life. We will strive to celebrate the brilliant Spirit in each individual and work collectively to glorify that which is Holy in each and every one of us. To honor and recognize that support for another is also support for ourselves. To kindle the flame in every heart humbly as gratitude for our opportunity here to make a subtle yet important difference. It is that simple.

The date of origination for Everything From Here to There is 9.9.09, a perfect date to mark this beginning of a wonderful opportunity. We swing the garden gate open, and ALL are welcome Here.

William Patrick Corgan”

Billy Corgan Wants To ‘Find Peace’ With Original Smashing Pumpkins Members

We have been busy transcribing a lengthy interview of Billy Corgan with Jennifer Weigel. We have released transcriptions regarding Donald Trump and Corgan’s views on social media and humanity’s future. These transcriptions so far have been based off of video recordings from a 9 part series released by Big Media Productions on YouTube, but we also found access to the entire two hour interview, with audience participation. Unfortunately, the audio quality of the full interview is poor and some sentences are just invariably lost to audible gargle. Here, we found a bit of Corgan speaking about the possibility of a full band reunion with James Iha and D’arcy Wretzky, Chamberlin included.

JW: “Do you think it’s time for a reunion, with the originals?”

BC: “Are you really asking me this question?”

JW: “I think it makes personally…but everyone wants to know that for some reason. I know that’s so not who we are now. I guess the question would be, would it make sense to sit down and have tea with either of them [Iha or Wretzky]? Because you spent so much time together, would you like to know who they are now?”

BC: “I know who they are…and they know who I am. When you spend that amount of time with somebody, of course they matured…I think the only way to answer every one of these questions is…I have no interest in doing anything that’s inorganic. I have people in my band now that I talk to…and they don’t want to talk to me and I don’t want to talk to them. If they try were lying on the side of the road, I would stop my car and bring them to the hospital, but we don’t send Christmas cards to each other. There’s no relationship. And so when you’re talking about the natural human instinct to find forgiveness and heal a relationship, I think that never ends. That’s a human thing, it has nothing to do with the band or people creating memories. The business of it all, I find quite gross…I think people rarely get out of those things [original reunions] what they think they’re gonna get. Because when a relationship breaks, and I would take it back more to something you’ve experienced in your family life or your romantic life, whatever, when a relationship breaks there are times it’s not gonna get any better. It’s what it was for what it was, underneath a particular set of circumstances…[inaudible]…There’s no temptation there for me. Strickly on my part I think it’s like, “Would I like to find peace?” Absolutely, of course. But beyond all the other stuff…I can’t even imagine that being able to watch.

Corgan also spoke on various aspects of the band’s past and his relationships to the music industry and audiences:

BC: “I didn’t get into this business I got into…to scream in an empty alleyway. I didn’t design this world [music industry], someone else designed it for me. They gave me a number and said, ‘Okay, now go stand over there.’ Now my natural, Eastern European gypsy spirit wants to kick everyone in the head in response, but it’s not an effective strategy anymore.”

BC: “Like when people would see us back in the day, they wouldn’t understand the combatant nature of the band or my verbal tirades and stuff like that. They didn’t understand it was performance art. We were purposefully pressing buttons being in a generation where they had it all figured out. When you try to engage someone with a different point of view, someone who assumes you align with them socially…and the minute they realize you’re not on their team or determine you’re not in their tribe, how quickly they turn. Generation X in particular led an incredible betrayal of values. The sellout, which was the word at the time, really is…the word of the generation. There has been far more selling out than buying in.”

Corgan has come a long way with this. Since the dissolution of the original lineup, there has been little talk between ex-bandmates outside of Chamberlin. But here, he shows a desire to make peace with them, which doesn’t equal a reunion. It means closure with people who were once part of his life and band, which is something a lot more important than a “reunion.” People will inevitably continue to criticize Corgan for anything he says. But the fact of the matter is, Corgan, Iha and Wretzky are human, not machines who play music for drooling middle aged people. Healing takes time. Respect that.

Henry Rollins: “Morrissey Is No Longer On My Hitlist”

In an interview with the Guardian, legendary Black Flag ex-vocalist and inspirational speaker/comedian/poet, “The Abraham Lincoln of Punk Rock,” Henry Rollins engaged in an interview with the publication and discussed a multitude of issues including Monsanto, the US Congress, politics and oddly enough, Morrissey:

Guardian: On reflection, do you think it was harsh to say you wanted to make a house record out of the sound of Morrissey being burned to death?

Rollins: “Well, I like the guy. I think he’s very intelligent and has real good taste in music. It’s nothing I’d say on stage now because I think it’s poorly meant, but that’s why we humans are allowed subtly evolve here and there. There are definitely some people I wouldn’t mind seeing burned to death – I absolutely have a kill list. But not good old Morrissey. I think the world is a much better place with him in it.”

Indeed, the two have had a somewhat tumultuous relationship in their years in music, with Rollins historically being critical of him. Rollins eventually came to the conclusion, however, that Morrissey’s worldview is a lot more amicable with his worldview than he used to think. However, Rollins does still instate his hit list is far from over:

Guardian: Who is on the kill list?
Rollins: “Just people who need to get got. And there’s two for sure. There are different grades. There are a few people who could do with losing a hand. And I’d happily carry the petrol can, the cleaver, whatever it takes. As far as the kill list goes, though, there are two who’ve REALLY gotta go. Every day I don’t get them I consider a partial failure.”

Author’s note: italics reverted.

Video circa 1990 of Rollins on Rage criticizing Morrissey before playing the music video for “November Spawned a Monster.” It should be taken in mind that this video is aged and is very tongue-in-cheek. Take it with a grain of salt, but it’s funny to watch.

Henry Rollins just announced a world tour, just as Morrissey wrapped up his tour, ironically. Tour dates are below:




Buy Tickets


Alte Feuerwache
Mannheim, Germany

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Frankfurt, Germany

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St George’s Hall
Bristol, UK

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Tyne Theatre
Newcastle, UK

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Bridgewater Hall
Manchester, UK

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London, UK

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Town Hall
Birmingham, UK

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London, UK

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Vicar Street
Dublin , Ireland

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Glasgow, UK

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Het Depot
Leuven , Belgium

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De Roma
Belgium, Antwerp

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Warsaw, Poland

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Sala Koncertowa Radia Wrocław
Wroclaw, Poland

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Kampnagel 26
Hamburg, Germany

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Cologne, Germany

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Amsterdam, Holland

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Theatre De Spil
Roeselare, Belgium

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Helsinki, Finland

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Göta Lejon
Stockholm, Sweden

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Club Moscow
Moscow, Russia

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Club Kosmonavt
St. Petersburg, Russia

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Kiev , Ukraine

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Havana Club
Tel Aviv, israel

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Liberty Hall
Lawrence, KS

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Thalia Hall
Chicago, IL

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Thalia Hall
Chicago, IL

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Turner Hall Ballroom
Milwaukee, WI

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SOKA University
Orange County, CA

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Billy Corgan Says Facebook Is Creating A Generation Of Narcissists & Twitter ‘Didn’t Do Sh*t For Me’

Late last year we reported Chicago television personality and spiritual author Jennifer Weigel would have a conversation with Billy Corgan as a part of her series on conversation with significant cultural figures and spirituality. The interview took place December 15th and as Weigel personally responded to me with, the interview would be up this week and finally has surfaced. A two hour event, the first hour mainly consisting of Corgan and Weigel covering a number of different but inter-related topics, including but not limited to Donald Trump, social media, Corgan’s creative process, American and international politics, Corgan’s spiritual influences and much more. The second hour consisted of a dialogue with audience members. Below, we include selected portions of the conversation divided into multiple parts by topic, transcribed exclusively here at Alternative Nation. (All citations are my own)

Social Media and Twitter

JW: “Why did you quit Twitter?”

BC: “Can I put this in Chicago language? Twitter wasn’t doing shit for me. Actually, somebody from Twitter called me and they wanted to know what happened, and I told them basically that in more kind language. It’s pretty obvious to me, and if anyone is interested there’s plenty of information coming out with what the social media oligarchs are now doing. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, it won’t matter. The names will change, the faces will change, but the same construct. Look no further than what Facebook is doing to magazines and newspapers. Their click rates are down 60 to 80 percent. I think I read TIME’s sales went down 60% in the last year…”

JW: “You’ve talked about how we’re creating a generation of narcissists because of Facebook…”

BC: “We’ve already created a generation of narcissists, that ship has sailed. Look no further than trying to have a conversation with a millenial to know what I’m talking about…”

JW: “Between the selfie stick and the texting, I was at dinner with four of them [Millenials] and nobody was looking at me. I was like, ‘So when we go to Mars later, can I park in front?’ Nobody cared. Nobody noticed. It’s the world, so how do you adapt to it? You quit Twitter and then what?”

BC: “Let me go back to what I was saying, because I think if we understand these things from a bigger meta point of view, it’s easier to relate to our own experience rather than ‘That’s what I did.’ Very fascinating, and I’ll use an example because I think it’s an easier way to illustrate it all, it’s a slightly different model. MTV starts right? They have nothing. So they have to go to all the labels and say, ‘Look, we wanna play all your videos. We can’t afford to pay for the content, we can’t afford to pay you per minute what we would for real content, like a show. So give us this free content and we’ll promote your things.’ Eventually, as everyone knows, MTV got so out of hand, they crushed the labels. [MTV] ran their business model into the ground and basically turned MTV into a normal network, off the backs of the musical artists, Janet Jackson or whoever. They made gazillions off of all these people and still pretend to be a music network of which of course, they’re nothing like it. They’re more like a social…socialist [sic] construct. ‘Fourteen and Pregnant’, you know?

But the point is, they cried ‘poor!’ in the beginning, they clung onto somebody else’s heat, in a wrestling term and eventually shot the people in the head who made them. It’s what Facebook and Twitter are all going to do now. Facebook is a little bit different because of the way it is set up, they have a better thing in the marketplace. I think people like me are waking up to where Twitter is weak against what, let’s call ‘celebrities,’ bring to Twitter, I think we’re going to start seeing a mass exodus. What a Kim Kardashian brings to a Twitter is worth more than four hundred people with the same amount of followers. So they take what a Kim Kardashian brings to a Twitter. Now in Kim Kardashian’s case, she can turn that and sell cosmetics or a clothing branding or whatever. But for people in the middle, I would put people like us [Weigel and Corgan] in the middle, we don’t get that same exchange. We can’t turn around and get a shoe deal because we are tweeting something. So in essence, Twitter and other social media platfroms take and take from something that I build. My name, my music, my whatever and they say, ‘Thanks a lot!’ Jimmy Chamberlin and I when we brought the Pumpkins back in 2007, we sat down one day and did the calculus and we realized for every hundred people we had on Facebook, we sold one record. So we were catering to 99 people to sell one thing. That is a weakly poor business exchange.”

JW: “Don’t you think the business model has changed since 2007 though?”

BC: “No, no and this is the last thing I’ll say about it because it can get real boring real fast…”

Audience member: “No we like it! This is wonderful.”

BC: [Corgan smiles] “Alright, I’ll carry on. Smashing Pumpkins currently have four million likes on Facebook. So, if you’re checking my site everyday and I post something like, ‘Hey, I took my dog for a walk’ and a little picture, you’ll see it but the other 3.99 million people [sic] won’t because they’re not visiting it everyday. So what Facebook wants you to do is ‘boost your posts’ or, this is where we get into Dumbland, do really dumb stuff. So that you click on it and you click on it and you click on it, so then it goes viral. So you create a culture where idiocy reigns and rules, not quality. [audience applauds] I’m not saying anything radical! So you’re creating a social ecosystem that rewards being inane.”

JW: “So, the counter of that is knowing a lot of comedians that use Twitter and Facebook to their advantage, if they are funny, which is their world, it goes viral and that’s their business, so maybe for them it’s not so bad.”

BC: “I would jump on you right there and argue that because of the social knob construct on Facebook, how many comedians on Facebook are saying what they would really say, in the world Richard Pryor grew up in? I learned as a white kid growing up in suburbs, I had a lot of exposure because of my father being a musician to other cultures and other points of view, but I learned from Richard Pryor that made me look at my world and say, ‘Huh, he’s got a point.’ These people I am growing up with are either outward racists or closet racists. His comedy, his social thinking, his brilliance made me look at my own race, white people, differently. But if people can’t have open conversations…if you have people like Jerry Seinfeld come out and saying, ‘It’s not worth playing at colleges anymore because social justice warriors will be all over you the moment you step out of line. So you’re right about a comedian using Facebook or a musician using Facebook, but I guarantee you the minute they put something up that doesn’t align with the social justice mob mentality, the risk is too high. So you have a watering down of diversity and homogenizing of general messaging. That, as an artist, is death.”

Government and Social Media

BC: “They [Facebook] are too tied into big government. The government is literally in league with these big social media companies becasuse they are mining the data! Why do you think Mark Zuckerberg learned Chinese? Whatever happened to this talk about ‘the government this’ and ‘the press that,’ that’s all gone out the window. Again, money rules, power rules. It’s not going to change, which is why I go back to my earlier point. When Tribe One meets Tribe Two meets Tribe Three, is everyone gonna go, ‘Hey, high five! I saw your documentary’, you know? I doubt it. I’m cynical in that regard. Don’t be fooled by things that are cuddly and fuzzy. The social media construct is cuddly and fuzzy for a reason. You want the most amount of people for the most amount of time. If you’re engaged in a debate [sic], inflaming rheotric about the candidate they don’t like, that only serves a bigger master. It has nothing to do with democracy. True democracy is uncomfortable. This is not uncomfortable. Look no further than some post from the New York Times and read the comments. Go on Breitbart and read the comments. It’s all right there, it’s all you need.”

Media and the Truth

JW: “So speaking of the New York Times, we talked about creating our own news website because the news that you get, having been in the news business for a long time, it’s filtered, it’s watered down, it’s the opinion of the writer, the editor, you’re not getting real news…”

BC: “May I ask you a question? [Weigel responds yes] If you look at the mainstream news, a very general question, you like I do open the paper or watch a major network, how much of that do you view as propaganda?”

JW: “Ninety percent.”

BC: “Same number for me: ninety percent. We come in media from diametrically opposed points of view. You grew up in a media family with your father? You have two people here who have been in public life for a very long time. Ninety percent [of news] is propaganda. Now the great thing is, and I assume most people here, already know that. So they are reading the news with a different level of discernment. But isn’t it interesting that those who are already propagandized, not only are not stopping the propaganda but are actually turning up the volume. Hence, so and so blasts so and so. So and so rips so and so. Because you have to double down on that rheotric.”

JW: “So now my question to you is since we didn’t start our own news network, though we’re still willing to do it if anyone out there is willing to fund it, we’re totally game for a conversation…a real network that gives real information and not ninety percent propaganda. What is your daily routine in the morning when you get up? What are the websites you go to, what do you do?”

BC: “I find that I read the mainstream websites because I want to see, basically what are the marching orders. It is pretty interesting to see the White House press a button and how the mainstream media verbatim with very little questioning factor that propaganda out. Maybe less in the past year but still pretty hot [sic], in the way the White House can dictate the conversation. Drudge is good but obviously he is right leaning and/or libertarian. I tried for awhile to read more leftist stuff…but I don’t know… I’m at a point now, I don’t know if if it’s the Salons of the world, I just can’t read it. Because I feel my intelligence is being insulted. Maybe that’s just where I am politically in my life, I just can’t have my intelligence insulted.”

Avengers of Truth or Brainwashed Robots

BC: “Being an ‘avenger for the truth’ is kind of a waste of time.”

JW: “Because they’re gonna put their head in the sand anyway?”

BC: “Yes, and you have to try to respect they want to be that way.”

JW: “No! If that was the case, people would still be segregated in cafeterias. If Rosa Parks hadn’t sat on the bus…I can’t live with that way, no way Jose. If you put your head in the sand, that pisses me off. It really pisses me off.”

BC: “I’m just playing contrarian.I don’t necessarily disagree with you. Going back into the social justice thing…I mean Melissa Harris Perry, you know, who is the gift that keeps on giving on MSNBC, literally got into a discussion yesterday about Darth Vader being black, but how he’s a good guy, when the mask is off, he’s white. Now I’m just paraphrasing, I just watched the clip. I try not to just read, not read what’s written. I tried to watch the clip – when you’re down into ‘Why is Darth Vader black?’…you know what I mean? I just can’t roll with that. I can’t roll with that…”

JW: “If we keeping playing the lowest common denominator, we’re gonna raise morons and no one is gonna get anywhere.”

BC: “But we seem to do a plenty good job about raising morons [audience laughs] social justice warriors or not. My point is, if something is ineffective, if the world doesn’t reflect the world that you think it should, in the way you think it should, you’re probably doing something wrong. It’s very easy to attack the human condition, but life is very hard, life is very difficult. I have a lot more empathy than when I did as a young man from what my family went through.”

JW: “Now is that from maturity or age or…?”

BC: “No, it’s realizing their lives were fucking hard. Whether it was disease or insanity or cataracts or whatever, their lives were fucking hard and I’m willing to guess many people here know what I’m talking about. Families struggle, people struggle, it’s like one of those John Steinbeck novels where the mountain seems too high for most people…they have the courage but they don’t have the strength or stamina…and now more than ever you have incredible detours to take you off the march up the hill. There’s no end to things you can click on. And now come the sex robots, that’s the new thing that’s starting to trend…there’s a growing discussion about robotics, one is the sexual application because there’s obviously a lot of money there and and morality of all that…and the other side is the militarization of robots. The third discussion is how robots are gonna replace, you know the people standing in front of McDonalds saying they want higher wages, McDonalds is just gonna put in robot hamburger makers, they already have them. That’s the end of that discussion. So, back to the sex robots… [audience laughs] Sorry that sounded like such a good line to say, I didn’t know where I was going with that…No what I’m saying is you’re quickly giving into this dystopic type of Charlton Heston in [The] Omega Man, where it’s you and all you got is this little cubicle, it’s green and shitty, so why not have a sex robot when a real human is only gonna disappoint you and all that stuff. These are…tectonic shifts in not only the way we live but the way we face our fear because anyone who has watched Lord of The Rings or any spiritual books or any of Jen’s [Weigel] books, that at some point of the crisis of the hero’s journey, the hero, he or she must face the thing they don’t want to face.”




Red Hot Chili Peppers To Headline Music Festival In California

Earlier today, it was announced that the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stevie Wonder and Florence + the Machine would headline the BottleRock Napa Valley, a music festival in Napa Valley, California, May 27th-29th of this year. This is the second American music festival they are headline this year, the other being Rock on the Range out in Ohio. Bottlerock

Tickets go on sale January 7th and are expected to be about $289 for a Three Day Pass.

As the Chili Peppers add the finishing touches to their eleventh studio album, and the second with guitarist Josh Klinghoffer (ex-Frusciante collaborator) , the band has quietly announced tour dates for the next year. They are all exclusively festival tour dates and all but one is in Europe. Next summer, the Red Hot Chili Peppers will be back in Europe to cover festivals such as Reading (England), Rock am Ring (Germany), Pinkpop (the Netherlands) and Roskilde (Denmark). They also will be found starting their festival tour dates at Ohio’s Rock on the Range festival in Columbus, May 21st-23rd. They have headlined several of these festivals in the past, such as Pinkpop and Rokslide. The tour dates are as below:

Date Venue Location
May 21-23 Rock On The Range Columbus, Ohio Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 03-05 Rock am Ring Mendig Airfield, Germany Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 03-05 Rock im Park Nuremburg, Germany Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 08 Greenfield Festival Interlaken, Switzerland Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 10-12 Pinkpop Landgraaf, The Netherlands Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 10-12 Novarock Nickelsdorf, Austria Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 30-Jul 03 Open’er Festival Gdynia, Poland Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 30-Jul 03 Roskilde Festival Roskilde, Denmark Get Tickets | RSVP
Jul 02 Rock Werchter Werchter, Belgium Get Tickets | RSVP
Jul 06 U-Park Festival Kiev, Ukraine Get Tickets | RSVP
Jul 09 Park Live Moscow, Russia Get Tickets | RSVP
Aug 26-27 Reading Festival Reading, England Get Tickets | RSVP
Aug 26-27 Leeds Festival Leeds, England Get Tickets | RSVP



Billy Corgan On If He Believes Donald Trump Is Racist

Edited by Brett Buchanan

Late last year we reported Chicago television personality and spiritual author Jennifer Weigel would have a conversation with Billy Corgan as a part of her series on conversation with significant cultural figures and spirituality. The interview took place December 15th and as Weigel personally responded to me with, the interview would be up this week and finally has surfaced. A two hour event, the first hour mainly consisting of Corgan and Weigel covering a number of different but inter-related topics, including but not limited to Donald Trump, social media, Corgan’s creative process, American and international politics, Corgan’s spiritual influences and much more. The second hour consisted of a dialogue with audience members. Below, we include selected portions of the conversation divided into multiple parts by topic, transcribed exclusively here at Alternative Nation. (All citations are my own)

What Puts You in a Creative Mindset?

BC: “I’ve said many times I’m a whore when it comes to creativity.”

JW: “You’re whore? So, you’ll take it when you can get it?”

BC: “No I have some ethics, but… [all laugh] probably not the best way to start. I think creativity…”

JW: “There’s the tweet: Billy’s a whore.”

BC: “There’s nothing new there…[all laugh] I think creativity is really about oppurtunity and whatever you attach to it is ultimately going to be an impediment. So you’re standing in line at the 7/11 and you have a really great idea and you don’t think it’s important enough to write down or stop what you’re doing, you’re kind of sending a signal up to the universe where your priorities are. For example, the opening riff to “Cherub Rock” on Siamese Dream came to me driving down Irving Park Road [Chicago, Ill.] heading east…and to where we were at the time, I was passenger, and where I had to get was about 25 minutes…and this is an era before cell phones. So I had to tell my friend, ‘Don’t say anything,’ because I felt something significant was happening and I didn’t know what it was, and I literally sat in the car for 25 minutes and went [hums the opening riff to Siamese Dream] …because I was so scared I was going to lose this little lightning bolt. So I think if you start with the premise that God is perfect without any asterisk or exception, and inspiration or at least the sense of inspiration is our way of reflecting the creator, if you believe in that kind of organization, then anything that comes between you and something that is pure or feels pure, is your own BS. So when you say something like, “I like to be near water to be creative”, that might be a preference, but if at some point you think, ‘Here I am standing in the desert, how am I going to write this chapter?’, that’s you, that’s not divinity.”

Donald Trump

JW: “So how do you explain Donald Trump?”

BC: “Well, without getting into the politik of it because it is a time unlike any that I remember. Of course, I can read about the late ’60s and early ’70s, I was very small, but the ’30s in Germany or any kind of tumultuous time in history, and certainly there’s hundreds of examples going back…I tend to look at those things through the prism of ‘people rise to the fore to express an unconscious desire.’ So when people say for example, ‘Well Donald Trump is the face of the angry white man who is frustrated by the process,’ [sic] I think, ‘Okay, so what?’ As is any version of…. [e.g.] Gloria Steinem represented something about women’s liberation…people rise to the fore as symbols. Having at times, and in particular one particular time being a symbol myself, you start to understand there’s an unconscious process at work with the public far larger than the personality. So the question isn’t so much who Donald Trump is but the world that made Donald Trump and then by what particular prism you see a Donald Trump. Let me take someone who is a little less of a political flashpoint at the moment, who is generally considered the second person behind Trump, which is [Ted] Cruz. I remember watching Cruz on the floor of the Senate filibustering what would later become Obamacare. I think he filibustered for 26 hours. If you look at the microcosm of press that went around the event, he was reviled, was an ‘idiot,’ ‘how could he do such a stupid thing,’ ‘this is gonna haunt the Republicans.’

Yet here’s the guy only a few years later in contention to be the President. So maybe something he represented maybe is more important to people that what he actually did. So when you get into the public mind, it’s more about symbolic representation. Which is why oftentimes when you see Trump supporters questioned by mainstream media they say, ‘I don’t give a shit about whether he’s right or wrong, it’s what he represents,’ and so he’s giving voice to that. So you could spend all day looking at the personality but you’re actually looking at the wrong direction. Look who would’ve been considered politically appropriate another time, would be considered a total racist today. As the great producer Flood once said, ‘One man’s meat is another man’s snare drum.’ What sounds like a snare drum to one person sounds like a thudding piece of meat to another. So it’s all in the eye of the beholder. So I tend to look at those things through the prism of the imaginations of public discourse and the unexpressed desires because no person, no human that I know, unless they are a guru or spiritual master who has dedicated themselves to spiritual practice, nobody I know can actually embody the projection.

Stay tuned for more installments of this interview!


More Rare Smiths and Morrissey Demos and Live Tracks Leak

Well, it looks like I got my wish. As previously reported, a few days ago rare Smiths and Morrissey demos circulated to the surface of the Internet and were publicized on Morrissey-solo. As a disclaimer, I was aware some of these demos had existed in the collections of certain diehards but were not available on any major published bootlegs. As bootlegs collectors like myself know, a plethora of selfish collectors of certain music exist – and if they come all along something rare, they will oftentimes not share with a community of people who might be interested in it. Why else did Martin Shkreli raise the price of Pyrimethamine (trade name Daraprim) from $13 a pill to $833? But I digress…

The good news is that, right before 2016, even more demos, rare, uncommon, uncirculated or unheard, were publicized to the larger community of Morrissey fans on Morrissey-solo. While the site has a disputable reputation with Morrissey, many of their members can be quite resourceful.

Some of these unreleased tracks were to be included on Kill Uncle and Your Arsenal reissues planned by Warner/Sire in 2004, but the idea was eventually tossed aside. They are available as follows (previously unavailable bolded) :

Kill Uncle

1. “My Love Life” (Full Length at 4:50)
2. “Striptease with a Difference” (Available on the Revelation and Reader Meet Author bootlegs)
3. “Pregnant for the Last Time”
4. Trash (Live in Irvine, b-side to Everyday is Like Sunday 2010 reissue)
5. That’s Entertainment (Live in Irvine)

Your Arsenal

1. Fantastic Bird (Demo, available on the remastered Southpaw Grammar)
2. Pashernate Love (Long Version)
3. Let the Right One Slip In (Long alternate mix, available on the remastered Bona Drag)
4. Jack the Ripper (b-side to “Certain People I Know”)

The real treasures here though have been shared by Anonymous user going as “Michael Bone” (though the pseudonym’s origin is not as ambiguous as the mystery of the person’s identity). There are both Smiths and Morrissey demos that are previously unsurfaced as long as that term carries its torch. There are in descending order demos of: “Why Don’t You Find Out for Yourself,” “Dagenham Dave,” “You Must Please Remember,” “Bigmouth Strikes Again,” “Unloveable,” “Best Friend on the Payroll” and “I Know Very Well How I Got My Name”.

“Unloveable”, a Smiths b-side, is not just a different mix but exists as a different arrangement of the song entirely and “Bigmouth Strikes Again” has a much a stronger percussion presence, with slightly different articulation and lyrics. All these solo Morrissey demos with the exception of “I Know Very Well How I Got My Name” and “Why Don’t You Find Out for Yourself” originate from the Southpaw Grammar sessions, the other two from the Viva Hate and Vauxhall and I sessions respectively. “I Know Very Well How I Got My Name” is exceptionally beautiful in its acoustic majesty, and what I believe to be a higher quality mix of the long version available from the extensive bootleg series, The Never Heard Symphonies. The rest of these demos from Southpaw are not strictly acoustic but have a stronger acoustic presence than their studio versions, in a similar manner to the last leak from a couple days ago. Enjoy listening and keep collecting.

Rare Smiths & Morrissey Demos Leak: A Track By Track Review

Earlier today, Morrissey-solo forum member Uncleskinny released several rare/previous unreleased demos from the Smiths and Morrissey onto his Soundcloud. The earliest demo comes from the Smiths’ sessions during the recording of the 1986’s The Queen is Dead, an alternate version of “Never Had No One Ever”. The most recent demos would be an acoustic versions of “Nobody Loves Us”, “The Boy Racer” (with drums) and “Southpaw” (with strings and drums) from the Southpaw Grammar sessions during the spring of 1995. Early versions of “Bengali in Platforms” and “He Knows I’d Love to See Him” are also included. On the Soundcloud there are also instrumental live tracks from soundchecks, including unknown Smiths material.

Let’s go through them track by track, yes?

“Bengali in Platforms” from Morrissey’s debut album Viva Hate is an interesting inclusion because the song was originally jammed on during the last Smiths sessions, with Ivor Perry sitting in for absent guitarist Johnny Marr. Though this version probably does not bare any resonance to the Smiths’ unrecorded version, but the history of the song’s evolution is particularly interesting. Wicked guitar solo as well, presumably from Vini Reilly who collaborated on the album.

“He Knows I’d Love to See Him”, a b-side to 1990’s hit “November Spawned a Monster” marks the end of post-Smiths collaboration between Morrissey and Smiths bassist Andy Rourke, who continued to record, write and perform with Morrissey infrequently following the Smiths’ breakup. This version is more stripped down but the track makes up for it with a sparkling and stunning detailed vocal track.

“Never Had No One Ever”, the fourth track from The Queen is Dead after the macabre masterpiece “I Know It’s Over” is by no means lackluster but no one had told us about this! There’s a fullblown jazz trumpet chorus, out of this world falsetto and maniacal laughter throughout the background. Not the classic Smiths sound at all, but it is produced incredibly well.

This version of “The Boy Racer” is more reminiscent of the era between Vauxhall and I, Southpaw Grammar and Maladjusted, the string of acoustic driven singles like “Boxers” or “Sunny” that became adventurous ballads with the acoustic air. The guitar almost sounds Spanish, an influence which arise on latter albums such as his latest, World Peace is None of Your Business.

“Southpaw” the 10 minute title track to Southpaw Grammar, here is condensed to about 9 minutes. It presents the different sort of majesty, like what was highlighted in the Boxers and Sunny with a strong acoustic presence. This would easily be the climax of an acoustic Morrissey record. The material from this album holds up very strong, with Morrissey quoted as saying during our interview with him that, “I think it’s a criminally underrated album​ and the band were in full flourish… thought the band were so fantastic that the world would open up and finally admit that the Morrissey band were a formidable force.” It would have been interesting to see how a more acoustic direction would have taken this album and here we have a glimpse.

Lastly, we have “Nobody Loves Us”, the b-side to “Dagenham Dave”, the lead single off of Southpaw Grammar. The last testament to the acoustics of Southpaw Grammar, while it is missing the strong electric guitar leads, simply just Morrissey and two acoustic guitars makes for an amazing torch song. Some of my favorite Morrissey lyrics here too, “born again atheist, practicing troublemaker.” I can only hope more of these demos are released.

On the Soundcloud are several Smiths instrumentals which are truly masterful pieces, with Johnny Marr in his prime, none of which are previously known.

Morrissey is about to close off a successful tour with concerts in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Las Vegas the end of this December until early January. More info here.

Watch Smashing Pumpkins’ Jeff Schroeder Jam With The Yamaha Revstar

In a new promotional campaign for Yamaha, Jeff Schroeder of the Smashing Pumpkins  participated in a series of videos entitled “I Play Yamaha”, in which noted guitarists who play Yamaha express their interest and satisfaction with the instrument.

“At a Smashing Pumpkins show, I would have to play everything from really heavy to really clean and beautiful. So finding one guitar that could cover all that sonic territory can be difficult but this guitar in particular, [the Yamaha Revstar] with its classic two Humbucker orientation that recalls a lot of other instruments but it’s versatile. There are some things about it that make my life a lot easier. It’s so much easier to get to the higher frets, the neck is a bit more modern but has a classic feel…it’s proven to be able to hold up in a bunch of different situations, musical situations. Yamaha in particular has such a high musical integrity, their pursuits in equipment development, gear development and guitar development are very much based on musical decisions.”

Jeff Schroeder was recently featured in a track by Texas noise/shoegaze/awesome trio Ringo Deathstarr, “Guilt” off of their new album Pure Mood.

Schroeder was been in the Pumpkins for almost 10 years and we are expecting a new album just around the corner! Though with the birth of Augustus Juppiter, the process of release may be held up a little bit.  I can only hope it features highlights of Schroeder’s guitar work because he is really an incredible, incredible guitarist. Just look at him shred here:

Additionally, if appeased by the sound of “Guilt”, check out Ringo Deathstarr’s new album and our interview with them. Very friendly people.

Billy Corgan Announces The Birth Of His Son, Augustus Juppiter

After much speculation and rumors: the Pumpkin King welcomes his heir into the world. On November 16th, 2015, Corgan’s girlfriend Chloe Mendel, closely associated with the Madame Zuzu’s teahouse in Chicago gave birth to their first son, Augustus Juppiter. These last couple months, fans who met the couple at Madame Zuzu’s had noticed Mendel to look pregnant. Corgan has been quiet these last couple of weeks outside of his eulogy to Scott Weiland and now it all makes sense. So far, not much detail has been given about the new family but they seem very happy with one another and Corgan and Mendel have been dating for around 2 years.

We at Alternative Nation are extremely elated to see Corgan enter a new chapter of his life as a father and for the start of Mendel’s journey as a mother. There is no true parallel in life than having a child and Corgan has expressed interest in having children for sometime. This year has seen a certain transformation for Corgan, his reunion with Chamberlin, the launch of People and Their Cars, a successful summer tour, but the welcoming of this child into the world takes the cake over everything else.

Corgan has often played the father figure in life, both personal and professional. In his youth, he frequently acted as the caretaker for his two younger brothers, as they were shot around Chicago between relatives in the midst of divorce. When the Pumpkins went through like James and D’arcy’s breakup, to Chamberlin’s initial firing and the revival of the band, Corgan was there taking care of business where no one else could. Not to mention, his dedication to his lovable cats over the years. There could not be better news surrounding Corgan. Augustus Juppiter, welcome to the world.

UPDATE: Forgot this one:

Red Hot Chili Peppers Announce New 2016 Festival Tour Dates

As the Chili Peppers add the finishing touches to their eleventh studio album, and the second with guitarist Josh Klinghoffer (ex-Frusciante collaborator) , the band has quietly announced tour dates for the next year. They are all exclusively festival tour dates and all but one is in Europe. Next summer, the Red Hot Chili Peppers will be back in Europe to cover festivals such as Reading (England), Rock am Ring (Germany), Pinkpop (the Netherlands) and Rokslide (Denmark). They also will be found starting their festival tour dates at Ohio’s Rock on the Range festival in Columbus, May 21st-23rd. They have headlined several of these festivals in the past, such as Pinkpop and Rokslide. The tour dates are as below:

Date Venue Location
May 21-23 Rock On The Range Columbus, Ohio Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 03-05 Rock am Ring Mendig Airfield, Germany Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 03-05 Rock im Park Nuremburg, Germany Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 08 Greenfield Festival Interlaken, Switzerland Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 10-12 Pinkpop Landgraaf, The Netherlands Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 10-12 Novarock Nickelsdorf, Austria Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 30-Jul 03 Open’er Festival Gdynia, Poland Get Tickets | RSVP
Jun 30-Jul 03 Roskilde Festival Roskilde, Denmark Get Tickets | RSVP
Jul 02 Rock Werchter Werchter, Belgium Get Tickets | RSVP
Jul 06 U-Park Festival Kiev, Ukraine Get Tickets | RSVP
Jul 09 Park Live Moscow, Russia Get Tickets | RSVP
Aug 26-27 Reading Festival Reading, England Get Tickets | RSVP
Aug 26-27 Leeds Festival Leeds, England Get Tickets | RSVP


As our last article reported, Tim and Cameron recently jammed with Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, who offered a major update on the band’s new album.

“He said the album has been finished musically for a while now, but they are still waiting on Anthony to track the vocals. He says the new album sounds very ‘emotional’. He smells like a freshly opened pack of printer paper.”


In anticipation, enjoy some videos from RHCP’s past, at some of these festivals:

Pinkpop 1988 (With original guitarist Hillel Slovak) “Fight Like a Brave”

Pinkpop 1988 Interview

Rokslide Festival 2002 “Scar Tissue”

Rock am Ring 2004 “My Lovely Man”


Readings/Leeds 2007 “Don’t Forget Me”


Interview: Ringo Deathstarr Discuss New Album, Smashing Pumpkins and World Tour

Special thanks to Daniel Coborn

I can’t lie, I’m a bit stubborn and it’s hard for me to get into new music. I’m a bit fixed in my taste but when I discover new music I like, I like to enjoy a close relationship with it and try to get as close to the music as I can. A band I’ve been coming back to again and again lately has been Ringo Deathstarr,a spacey genre bending power trio of G.G. Alex, Daniel Coborn and Elliott Frazier. They’re kooky – it’s hard to believe they’re from Austin, Texas when it sounds like they’re from planet Cerubon 41-2 from the Bunoti galaxy. Slow and explosive but quick with dreamy harmonies, they continue with the legacy of bands like My Bloody Valentine but at the same time do not blatantly rip them off, which I see as being more commonplace nowadays from many “shoegaze revival” movements. With a new name like Ringo Deathstarr, expect the Good Vibes Express headed to a station near you. I had the pleasure of interviewing the guys and talking to them the last couple weeks. Originally it was to be in person at Fun Fun Fun Fest, but it didn’t work out because of transit issues. Below, enjoy our brief interview with Ringo Deathstarr as they just are recovering from touring:

How was your Fun Fun Fun Fest experience?
Seems like a long time ago now, but it was a great festival, as usual–we had to play first in the early morning sun but there was a good turnout and i think we went over well.

Your newest album, Pure Mood, is really neat. I’ve been listening it and really struck me as different from much of the “shoegaze revival” stuff I’ve been hearing this last year or so (excuse the labeling). Is there a particular influence, set of gear or happenstance that distinguishes your album for your past works, instrumentally?
It’s just a bit harder, maybe a bit grungier. We spent a lot more time on the recording and most of the songs were written beforehand so that helped in creating a flow, or something.

I’m bad with discerning lyrics – any particular themes or messages you were exploring on this album?We all wrote lyrics–no particular themes other than the usual–life, love, existential anxiety.

Could you expand on the term “existential anxiety?”
Death, the after life, the infinitely large universe and my relation to it.

We’ve noticed your relationship with the Smashing Pumpkins, especially with guitarist Jeff Schroeder. Was the band an influence growing up?
Of course, and touring with them in 2011 helped out in lots of ways.

Schroeder featured on a track from Pure Mood, “Guilt“. What is the Schroeder collaboration process like?
Send Jeff the tracks, let him do his thing, edit it in… Easy!

How did your initial tour dates with the Pumpkins go?
It was a dream come true, but I wish we could do it again, cause we are a lot better as players now.

How is your European tour going?
The euro tour was insane. We drove all over the continent in a rented station wagon playing in venues of all sizes. We drank lots of free beer, and kicked several asses.

In light of recent political and world events, namely the attacks in Paris, did this stop you from touring around Europe at all?
No way.  We played in Paris the week after the attacks with Protomartyr. It was a really beautiful thing to be a part of.

Any nice sights or sounds you’ve experienced out in Europe?
We saw a really cool cruise ship performance on an overnight ferry from Stavanger, Norway to Copenhagen, Denmark that redefined our belief systems about what it means to be cool.

What’s on the horizon?
US tour in February and back to Europe in March. Then new tunes.

I’d love to hear a holiday release from you guys. The shoegaze and alt-rock influences plus Christmas music, sounds like a tasty mix. What do you all do for the holidays?
Sounds like it could be fun. We all do normal family stuff, though.  You know, church, egg nog, watching scrooged.

Are any of you all involved in other musical and/or artistic projects? I know me personally and maybe some of our readers would like to check that stuff out.
None of us actively play in other bands but Elliott does some studio work, producing bands and the like. Check out the band from Austin, blxpltn! He produced their last record [Black Cop Down] and their upcoming one it kicks ass.

You guys will be headed to Japan very soon – excited? Do you guys have a following out there? [Note, this question was asked before the Japanese leg was completed]
Japan is our best place to play. The people there treat us like Nirvana.  We are friends with super famous Japanese rock star Sugizo.  Our record label rules.  It’s hard to explain how much it rules over there.  I pretty much live my life waiting for the next time we can go over.

How much rock and roll do your souls collectively contain?


Good answer.

Ringo Deathstarr is slated to come back to the United States in February before returning to Europe in March. The new tour dates will be announced soon. For more updates, follow their Facebook or Twitter and expect more news of them in the following months. Look for their new album Pure Mood on iTunes and other online streaming services and marketplaces, as well as record stores.