Just as modern rock act 311 releases a concert DVD later this month, principal member Nick Hexum and his brother, singer/songwriter Zack Hexum, will launch a tour of swing states in advance of the U.S

Just as modern rock act 311 releases a concert DVD later this month, principal member Nick Hexum and his brother, singer/songwriter Zack Hexum, will launch a tour of swing states in advance of the U.S. presidential election.

Due Oct. 26 via Volcano, the two-DVD "311 Day 2004/Live In New Orleans" captures the band's March 11 concert, a self-proclaimed holiday that mirrors the group's name and has been celebrated almost annually with special performances. This year's show took place at the UNO Lakefront Arena in New Orleans, and featured a two-set, five-hour performance bolstered by burlesque dancers, stilt walkers and fire-eaters, among other oddities.

The DVD features performances of 64 songs, including favorites like "Do You Right," "My Stoney Baby" and "Down," and rarities such as "Juan Bond" and "Let the Cards Fall." A slew of covers were also played that night, including the band's hit version of the Cure's "Love Song," the Clash's "(White Man) In Hammersmith Palais," and Led Zeppelin's "D'yer Maker."

On Oct. 21, 311 guitarist/vocalist Nick Hexum and his brother Zack will launch an eight-date run with stops in Missouri, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio and Illinois, where they plan to raise awareness about the Nov. 2 election and support for Democratic candidate John Kerry.

"It hit me like a ton of bricks that I wasn't doing enough to help spread the word about the most important election of our lifetimes," Nick Hexum says on the 311 Web site about the Rock for Kerry tour. "I decided I couldn't live with myself if I didn't do everything in my power to help educate voters on what I believe are terrible missteps by the Bush administration and to help inform people about Kerry's clear and concise plan for our country."

Fans can expect to hear 311 songs as well as cuts from Zack Hexum's debut album, "The Story So Far...," released in June via Trauma, as well as a range of "covers from the Beatles, Radiohead, the Pixies, Billy Joel, Bob Marley and the Clash," Nick adds. "And we'll be talking about the election and the need for a regime change in this country."

311 has begun writing songs for a new studio album, according to the band's site, with sessions planned for February and March of next year. The plan will prevent the group from staging a 2005 3-11 Day show.

"This was a difficult decision, because 3-11 Day is a very special event for the members of the band," the site says. "But the band feels that they must focus on the writing and recording of the new album as they work towards a summer album release and a summer tour." The set will be the follow-up to 2003's "Evolver," which bowed at No. 7 on The Billboard 200 and has sold 316,000 copies.

Here are Nick and Zack Hexum's tour dates:

Oct 21: Colombia, Mo. (Blue Note)
Oct 23: St. Louis (Mississippi Nights)
Oct 25: Kansas City, Mo. (Grand Emporium)
Oct 26: Springfield, Mo. (Rockwell's)
Oct 27: Iowa City, Iowa (Gabe's Oasis)
Oct 29: Detroit (Magic Bag)
Oct 30: Cleveland (Odeon)
Oct 31: Chicago (Metro)