New Deal Means High Gear For This Machine
My Sister's Machine has joined the list of Seattle bands with record contracts. The hard-rock group has signed with Caroline, a small but influential New York label best known for its work with alternative bands and for distributing independent labels. The group's first album, "Diva," is set for release Jan. 24, but you can hear many of the songs from it tomorrow night when the band headlines at RKCNDY. Sure to be featured is "I Hate You," the first single from the album, a stinging Poison-like rocker with a vocal by Nick Pollock that sounds like a combination of Axl Rose and Judas Priest's Rob Halford. Pollock was one of the founding members of Alice in Chains, back when the band was more metal than grunge. Guitarist Owen Right and drummer Chris Gohde were one-half of the promising Mistrust, one of the area's top hard-rock bands of the 1980s. Rounding out the group is bassist Chris "Ivan" Ivanovich.
-- Come back, Soundgarden, all is forgiven: MTV is making up for squelching the "Jesus Christ Pose" video - which was relegated to occasional showings on the "120 Minutes" and "Headbanger's Ball" shows, rather than being put on regular rotation (the band charged it was because of the clip's use of crosses and crucifixes; MTV said the song just didn't fit its regular programming) - by adding the band's new video, "Outshined," to the "Buzz Bin," made up of the hottest new clips. The video of the powerful song, which has the band performing in what looks like hell's foundry, with fire and treadmills and chains, is getting mass airplay. It's a better song and a better video, and is probably the reason the "Badmotorfinger" album took a big jump on the Billboard chart this week, climbing from No. 153 to 117.
-- Sub Pop continues to prosper as the label's former band Nirvana rides high on the charts with its "Nevermind" album; Sub Pop gets a share of profits from the album as part of the band's signing to Geffen Records. Nirvana's runaway success has also put its debut Sub Pop album, "Bleach," on the charts, arriving this week at No. 185 in Billboard. Meanwhile, pop critics from The New York Times have come out with their best albums of the year, and three of the four put "Nevermind" high on their lists: Peter Watrous in the No. 4 spot, Jon Pareles at No. 2 and Karen Schoemer No. 3. Only Stephen Holden left it off his list. And distinguished rock critic Dave Marsh writes of Nirvana in the latest issue of his Rock & Roll Confidential, calling Kurt Cobain "the most talented hard-rock singer since Axl Rose," and urging Nirvana to continue to "madden every adult and record exec within earshot."
-- The Rangehoods are breaking up. The all-original, mainstream rock band headed by Steve Pearson, formerly of the Heats, plays its last Seattle shows tonight and tomorrow night at the Hollywood Underground. It will play one more gig at Waldo's in Kirkland later this month before spliting for good. But the talented Pearson will still be around. His new Steve Pearson Band debuts next Thursday night at the Firehouse in Ballard, and he will continue to be a member of the Fighting Cocks.
-- Ballots for the fifth annual Northwest Music Awards Show are now available in clubs, record stores, music shops and other locations. The ballots must be postmarked by Jan. 31 to be included in the final count. The winners will be announced at the annual NAMA Music Awards show, the finale of the NAMA convention, set for March 20-22 at the Washington State Trade and Convention Center. The awards show, which includes performances by Northwest artists, is tentatively set for the Paramount.
-- Nastymix Records has entered into a distribution deal with Ichiban Records of Atlanta. Ichiban will handle national and international distribution of Nastymix releases, starting with the reissue of Kid Sensation's "Rollin' With Number One" album and the release next month of the Kid's new disc, "The Power Of The Rhyme." As part of the deal, a couple of Ichiban execs will sit on Nastymix's board, with Ed Locke remaining president/CEO. Nastymix product previously was distributed by a tangle of distributors that didn't always cover the entire country. Meanwhile, Nastymix's former top name, Sir Mix-a-Lot, is about to release his first album for his new label, Def American.
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