Billboard Bits: Rob Zombie, Les Claypool, Mouse On Mars

News on Rob Zombie, Les Claypool, Mouse On Mars, Tortoise, Thrill Jockey

Rob Zombie's film "House of 1,000 Corpses" has been denied release by Universal Pictures. Universal Pictures chairman Stacey Snider told the Los Angeles Times that the studio's decision to drop the movie was over artistic differences, and not related to recent comments from the Senate Commerce Committee and the Federal Trade Commission over the marketing of violent content to children.

Zombie's previous association with Universal has included his solo debut "Hellbilly Deluxe" for the company's Geffen Records, and his design of a horror maze for the studio's theme park in Los Angeles for the past three Halloweens.

The Times reports that at least two independent distributors are interested in picking up the film. "House of 1,000 Corpses" was filmed last summer, and follows two couples trapped in a town of violent wackos after their car dies in the middle of nowhere.

-- Todd Martens, L.A.

Primus leader Les Claypool's Prawn Song label has signed a three-year distribution deal with RED, Billboard Bulletin reports. Under the deal, Prawn Song releases will be worked by RED's marketing arm, Red Ink. The first title to be worked through the new agreement will be "Live Frogs-Set 1," a live album from Les Claypool's Frog Brigade, one of his many side projects. It is slated for an April 10 release.

German electronic duo Mouse On Mars will release a new album, "Idiology," on April 24 via Thrill Jockey. It's the group's seventh album in as many years, and comes on the heels of last year's "Niun Nigging." Drummer/vocalist Dodo Nkishi, who joined MOM principals Andi Toma and Jan St. Werner on the tour in support of "Niun Nigging," also appears on "Idiology." Mouse On Mars will hit the road for an extensive North American tour, which gets underway June 7 in Philadelphia and includes three double-bills with Thrill Jockey labelmates Tortoise later that month. International dates in Europe, Japan, Mexico, and South Africa are in the works. For a full itinerary, visit Thrill Jockey's official Web site.