Billboard Bits: The Cure, Cave In, Al Franken

News on The Cure, Cave In, Al Franken

CureThe Cure's performance for Sessions@AOL has been made available as a digital EP exclusively through Apple's iTunes Music Store. The eight-track collection sports three cuts from the group's new self-titled I Am/Geffen album, including the single "The End of the World," plus such oldies as "Just Like Heaven," "Love Song" and "One Hundred Years." Fans can also download an album cover created especially for the release.

The Cure just kicked off its summer Curiosa tour, with such like-minded acts as Interpol and the Rapture in tow. The trek drops in tonight (July 29) on Atlanta's Hi Fi Buys Amphitheatre.

In other news, the group has confirmed a Sept. 2 show in Monterrey, Mexico, and a Sept. 4 appearance in Mexico City, after "thousands of email requests, letters and calls," according to its official Web site.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

Cave InWhile continuing work on material intended for its
next studio album, rock outfit Cave In has signed on to support Converge's fall North American tour, which kicks off Sept. 24 in Montreal and wraps Oct. 31 in Cambridge, Mass.

"It's going to span about five to six weeks, and from our glimpses at the preliminary routing we'll be covering a lot of places we haven't visited in a long while," the group writes on its official Web site.

The site adds that a tour sampler will feature demos for the new Cave In tracks "Ataraxia" and "Trepanning," both of which have been featured in recent live appearances.

Cave In's next album will be the follow-up to its 2003 RCA debut, "Antenna," but it is unclear which label will release the set. "We wish we could say more about it right now, but it's going to have to wait," the site says, adding, "hopefully it won't take longer than the duration of this summer" for the situation to be resolved.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.

Artemis Records will on Sept. 21 release a disc of highlights from political comedian Al Franken's daily Air America Radio show. "The O'Franken Factor: The Very Best of the O'Franken Factor" features 25 vignettes culled from broadcasts since the liberal talk radio network launched on March 31.

"Al Franken is a force of nature," Artemis president Daniel Glass says. "He is one of the sharpest and most insightful talents of our day. In all the years I that I have known Al, he has remained true to his beliefs and has found new and innovative ways to get his message across."

Among the tracks on the set are "Flippity-Floppity," "Interview With a Male Prostitute," several "Non-Lie of the Day" segments, as well as bits poking fun at President Bush and Vice President Cheney.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.