Billboard Bits: Kraftwerk, Hot Snakes, Bizarre

News on Kraftwerk, Hot Snakes, Bizarre, April Sixth

KraftwerkLegendary German electronic act Kraftwerk will begin a five-week world tour with a May 30-31 stand at Washington, D.C.'s 9:30 Club. The quartet will also play New York, Detroit, Chicago and Los Angeles, before 11 European dates through July 4 at the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland.

Kraftwerk broke a 17-year break between albums with the 2003 release of "Tour de France Soundtracks" (Astralwerks), which peaked at No. 3 on Billboard's Top Electronic Albums chart. And while a series of vintage album reissues have been in the works for some time, a label spokesperson says there is no update on their status, or that of any other new releases, at present.

Here are Kraftwerk's tour dates:

May 30-31: Washington, D.C. (9:30 Club)
June 1: New York (Hammerstein Ballroom)
June 2: Detroit (State Theatre)
June 4: Chicago (Riviera Theatre)
June 6: Los Angeles (Greek Theatre)
June 11: Venice (Biennale Palagalileo)
June 13: Belgrade (Kalemegdan Fortress)
June 14: Sofia, Bulgaria (Palace of Culture)
June 16: Skopje, Macedonia (Skopsko Lizgaliste)
June 17: Thessaloniki, Greece (Theatro Gis)
June 18: Athens (Lycabettus)
June 20: Istanbul (Rock Istanbul)
June 30: Werchter, Belgium (Werchter Festival)
July 3: Bavilliers, France (Les Eurockeennes)
July 4: Montreux, Switzerland (Montreux Jazz Festival)

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

SnakesThe last "Peel Session" legendary BBC radio DJ John Peel recorded before his death last October will be released on CD later this month. San Diego rock act Hot Snakes taped four songs with Peel ("Automatic Midnight," "No Hands," "Braintrust" and "This Mystic Decade", which will be issued April 26 via Swami.

Hot Snakes' members utilized some of the historic equipment at the studio, including a guitar amplifier used for the Beatles' "Hey Jude" and the Rolling Stones' "Satisfaction" and a drum set comprised of pieces from John Bonham, Keith Moon and Ringo Starr. Bassist Gar Wood switched from an electric to a German stand-up acoustic bass to contrast the sound of the band's studio recordings.

According to Swami's
official Web site, Hot Snakes will tour Europe in May, but no dates have yet been announced.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

BizarreD-12's Bizarre will become the second member of the Eminem-led hip-hop act to embark on a solo career with the June 28 release of "Hannicap Circus." Eminem produced and guests on the Redhead Records/Arsenal Entertainment/Sanctuary Urban Records Group album's first single, "Rock Star."

Other tracks on the album include "Porno Bitches" featuring OutKast's Big Boi and Devin the Dude, "F*#k Ya Life," "Gospel Weed" and "Bad Day." Other guests include Dead Prez, Hi-Tek and Erick Sermon.

"I reveal more topics and let people know who I am," Bizarre says about the set. "I mean, I have a crazy-ass rap style, a crazy ass image but I'm really a laid back guy named Rufus [Johnson] that likes to pop Vicodin and go fishin'."

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

April SixthFittingly, Los Angeles-area rock act April Sixth will celebrate its namesake day with a show tonight (April 6) in Riverside, Calif. The band is preparing for the release of its Howard Benson (P.O.D., Hoobastank) -produced debut album, "In Memory," due this summer via Columbia.

First single "Dear Angel," which will be shipped to U.S. radio outlets next month for airplay consideration and can be heard streaming on the band's
official Web site. Not unlike P.O.D. and Evanescence, the band has a Christian background that is woven through its music, previously heard on the 2003 Elektra EP "Mariposa Ave."

After handful of other headlining club dates throughout this month, May will find April Sixth opening shows for Crossfade.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.