Cult rock duo Ween will put off the recording of its next studio album in favor of a summer North American tour. Dates begin Friday (April 19) in Asheville, N.C., and are booked through a June 23 appe

Cult rock duo Ween will put off the recording of its next studio album in favor of a summer North American tour. Dates begin Friday (April 19) in Asheville, N.C., and are booked through a June 23 appearance at the Bonnaroo Festival in Manchester, Tenn. Ween will also drop in May 25 at the Mountain Aire Festival in Calaveras County, Calif.

"We plan on hitting many cities where we haven't played in a few years -- places like Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis, New York, etc.," group member Mickey "Dean Ween" Melchiondo writes on Ween's official Web site. "Our plan is to embark on July 4th for two weeks -- and then again in mid-August for two more weeks. We will be hitting the West Coast, the South, and the Midwest, and [will] try and record the new album before September rolls around."

The album will be Ween's first since its late 2000 departure from Elektra. "We have amassed enough material for about three new albums but we're taking our time to try and make it (seriously) our best record yet," Melchiondo writes. "There has been a lot of procrastination and changes of plans on our part, but it's all been for the best." Some of the new songs are being played live.

In other Ween news, the group will appear, in puppet form, on a forthcoming episode of Comedy Central's "Crank Yankers" show. "It's hard to explain the concept exactly, but the show features musical guests every week -- some of the guests in the first few episodes are Tenacious D and the Foo Fighters," Melchiondo says. Ween wrote a new song, "Hey There Fancypants," exclusively for the show.

Melchiondo and collaborator Dickie Moist have also wrapped work on their third Moistboyz album, which the former describes as "11 songs of the most the ferocious rock you can find anywhere." The group's first two records, originally released by Grand Royal, are being prepped for reissue with bonus tracks on Ween's own Chocodog Records.

Finally, Ween is planning to unveil its second self-released live album. "I don't want to spoil the fun by telling you which show we've decided upon," Melchiondo says. "I can tell you that it's a show I've never seen available for trade anywhere."

Here are Ween's tour dates:

April 19: Asheville, N.C. (Thomas Wolfe Auditorium)
April 20: Greensboro, N.C. (Dana Auditorium)
April 21: North Charleston, S.C. (the Plex)
April 23: Lexington, Ky. (Kentucky Theater)
April 24: Bloomington, Ind. (Axis)
April 25: Iowa City, Iowa (Univ. of Iowa Main Lounge)
April 26: Columbia, Mo. (Missouri Theater)
April 27: Carbondale, Ill. (Shryock Auditorium)
May 3: Haverford, Pa. (Haverford College)
May 5: Princeton, N.J. (Princeton University)
May 25: Calaveras County, Calif. (Mountain Aire Festival)
June 23: Manchester, Tenn. (Bonnaroo Festival)

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