Billboard Bits: Guided By Voices, Lovage, Travis Tritt
News on Guided By Voices, Lovage, Travis TrittUnderground rock juggernaut Guided By Voices is currently recording demos for a new studio album with an undisclosed producer. In recent live performances, the quintet has been playing a number of songs intended for the new set, which is provisionally titled "Invisible Train to Earth." Alongside the title track, other new songs include "Car Language," "Wings of Thorn," "Back to the Lake," and "Storm Vibrations."
The band is expected to play a wealth of the new material at two New Year's Eve shows Dec. 30-31 at New York's famed Apollo Theater. As previously reported, the Strokes are co-headlining at the gigs, which will be hosted by comedian David Cross.
GBV frontman Robert Pollard also has two releases already on the calendar for early 2002: "Calling Zero" by Go Back Snowball, a collaboration with Mac McCaughan from Superchunk; and "Life Starts Here," the second album by Airport 5, a collaboration with former GBV principal Tobin Sprout. Both albums will be released by Rockathon/Recordhead as part of the ongoing Fading Captain Series.
-- Troy Carpenter, N.Y.
Producer Dan the Automator, Faith No More/Fantomas/Tomahawk principal Mike Patton, in-demand DJ Kid Koala, and Elysian Fields vocalist Jennifer Charles will hit the road in North America under the name Lovage. The group, which released the album "Nathaniel Merriweather Presents Lovage: Music To Make Love to Your Old Lady By" this fall on the Automator's 75 Ark imprint, will play nine dates from Jan. 7-17.
Prince Paul, De La Soul's Maseo, and the Automator's Gorillaz collaborator Damon Albarn are among the other guests on the album, which was also issued in an all-instrumental edition.
Here are Lovage's tour dates:
Jan. 7: Los Angeles (House of Blues)
Jan. 8: San Francisco (Slim's)
Jan. 9: Seattle (I-Spy)
Jan. 10: Vancouver (Richard's on Richards)
Jan. 12: Minneapolis (First Avenue)
Jan. 13: Chicago (House of Blues)
Jan. 15: Toronto (Phoenix)
Jan. 16: Cambridge (Middle East)
Jan. 17: New York (Bowery Ballroom)
-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.
Country singer/songwriter Travis Tritt will show off both his rowdy streak and his romantic heart on a pair of upcoming Rhino compilations. Due Feb. 5, "The Rockin' Side" and "The Lovin' Side" will each collect 16-tracks dating back more than a decade.
"The Rockin' Side" pulls in such past hits at "The Whiskey Ain't Workin'," a duet with Marty Stuart that won the 1992 best vocal collaboration Grammy, and peaked at No. 2 on Billboard's Hot Country Singles & Tracks chart. Also included is his cover of the Jerry Chesnut-penned "T-R-O-U-B-L-E," a top-40 Billboard Hot 100 hit for Elvis Presley in 1975, and a version of "Take It Easy" that was part of 1993's "Common Thread: The Songs of the Eagles" compilation.
"The Lovin' Side" features several ballads that topped the country singles tally, including "Anymore" (1991), "Can I Trust You With My Heart" (1993), and "Help Me Hold On" (1990). Among the other cuts includes are a pair of previously released covers: the Platters' "Only You (And You Alone)" and Sam & Dave's "When Something Is Wrong With My Baby," featuring Patti LaBelle. The tracks previously appeared on the "Sgt. Bilko" soundtrack and the 1994 compilation "Rhythm, Country and Blues," respectively.
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.