The major record labels and 5.1 Entertainment Group, parent of the Silverline, immergent and Myutopia labels, will release the first DualDisc titles Oct. 26. The two-sided CD/DVD hybrid was recently t

The major record labels and 5.1 Entertainment Group, parent of the Silverline, immergent and Myutopia labels, will release the first DualDisc titles Oct. 26. The two-sided CD/DVD hybrid was recently test-marketed in Boston and Seattle.

The consortium of labels revealed the launch date today (Aug. 24) at the NARM Convention at the San Diego Marriott.

The DualDisc launch follows what the labels call an overwhelmingly positive response to the test-marketed discs, which consist of a standard audio CD side and a DVD side that allows for high-resolution, surround sound audio; video; ROM capability and additional content such as lyrics, still photos, biographies and discographies.

Several label executives contacted by Billboard.biz note that DualDisc is a new product, not a new format, as it is composed of two existing formats. Specialized playback equipment is not required.

Detailed release information was not available. Initial DualDisc titles from Warner will include A Simple Plan's "Still Not Getting Any...," the self-titled album by Trapt and a new set by the Donnas. Sony is putting out DualDiscs by Miles Davis ("Kind of Blue") and David Bowie ("Reality"), as well as sets by Good Charlotte, Yo-Yo Ma, Incubus, Five For Fighting and Train. 5.1 titles will include Blondie's "The Curse of Blondie," Gene Simmons' "***hole" and sets by Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bob Marley, Jane Monheit, Dar Williams, the Mavericks and Robert Cray.

BMG, Universal and EMI have all tested DualDiscs -- by the likes of Usher, Andrew WK and Fischerspooner, respectively -- but have not revealed their initial release slates.

While the introduction of the competing DVD-Audio and Super Audio CD formats has been marked by consumer confusion and generally modest sales, label executives feel that DualDisc's compatibility with virtually all CD and DVD players increases the likelihood of mainstream adoption. "Certainly, one of the important things for us is backward-compatibility," says Larry Kenswil, president of Universal Music Group eLabs, "so that the DVD side will be playable on every DVD player in the home today."

An insert in two DualDiscs states, in part: "We recommend using the DVD side if you have a DVD player in order to enjoy the entire album in enhanced audio and the additional DVD features. The DVD side plays wherever a DVD plays -- including many gaming consoles and computers. In a PC, the DVD side acts like a DVD-ROM on DualDiscs that include computer extras and Web links. The CD side plays on all but a limited number of CD and DVD models."

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