Pearl Jam's first world tour in more than two-and-a-half years will kick off Feb. 8 in Brisbane, Australia, according to Australian radio station Triple-J. So far, 10 dates are confirmed in Australia

Pearl Jam's first world tour in more than two-and-a-half years will kick off Feb. 8 in Brisbane, Australia, according to Australian radio station Triple-J. So far, 10 dates are confirmed in Australia and Japan, with additional shows expected to be added. Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr and his new band, the Healers, will open the five Australian shows; there is no word yet on an opener for the five engagements in Japan.

Pearl Jam is touring in support of its latest Epic album, "Riot Act," due Nov. 12. The single "I Am Mine," which reached the top-10 on both of Billboard's rock airplay charts, has also made a strong impression in Australia, where it debuted at No. 12 on the continent's singles chart. The group has made two prior excursions Down Under, the last of which came in the spring of 1998, but has not played in Japan since early 1995.

As previously reported, Pearl Jam will warm up with a Dec. 8 benefit concert at Key Arena in its Seattle hometown. A second show the following night has been added; Mudhoney and Steve Earle will support. The group is also tipped to play two small venue shows around that time but has yet to confirm details. A stateside tour will likely commence in May.

A few of the songs from "Riot Act" were debuted in September when Pearl Jam opened a club show for the Who in Chicago. The group got a head start roadtesting the new material by filming some rehearsals at Seattle's Chop Suey club, some clips from which are being used for promotional purposes outside of North America.

"Most everything was coming together nicely," drummer Matt Cameron tells Billboard.com. "The songs we were worrying about weren't a worry after we dug in and tried to figure out what to do." But guitarist Mike McCready admits he had some issues learning the Cameron-penned guitar effects extravaganza "You Are": "It was really a problem for me! I couldn't go to sleep!"

As for Marr, he and Vedder previously collaborated in early 2001 with former Split Enz/Crowded House principal Neil Finn for a series of Australian concerts, chronicled on the Nettwerk live album "Seven Worlds Collide." As previously reported, Marr and the Healers' as-yet-untitled debut album is due early next year via iMusic.

Here are Pearl Jam's tour dates:

Dec. 8-9: Seattle (Key Arena)
Feb. 8: Brisbane, Australia (Brisbane Entertainment Centre)
Feb. 11: Sydney (Sydney Entertainment Centre)
Feb. 16: Adelaide, Australia (Adelaide Entertainment Centre)
Feb. 18: Melbourne (Rod Laver Arena)
Feb. 23: Perth, Australia (Burswood Dome)
Feb. 28: Sendai, Japan (Isumity 21)
March 1: Yokohama, Japan (Pacifico Yokohama)
March 3: Tokyo (Budokan)
March 4: Osaka, Japan (Koseinenkin Kaikan)
March 6: Nagoya, Japan (Nagoyashi Kokaido)

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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