Those underage local rock-gods-in-waiting, the Catheters, had hungry scouts from DreamWorks among their audience when they opened for Zeke March 3 at the Crocodile. Word is definitely out on these guys, who pack sexy glam and teenaged self-consciousness into one hot package. Let the bidding war begin.
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Wasn't it just a few years ago that Harvey Danger had all the labels in hot pursuit? And now, one gigantic radio hit and a newly recorded sophomore disc later, the band is having all sorts of headaches. A while back, Harvey Danger's label, London, was released from its contract with Polygram when that label merged with Universal. (Okay, now I'm getting a headache.) London spent most of 1999 trying to hook up with Sire, and all the while the band worked on their much-anticipated follow-up to Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone? -- finally calling it complete at 12 songs and 48 minutes. In January, London hitched up with Sire and told Harvey Danger that the record would come out in March, and that they should get ready to start touring as early as February. One week later, the band got the word that because all London assets were obtained using Polygram money, all London assets belonged to new industry behemoth Universal Music Group. Which basically means that Harvey Danger now has to sit on their thumbs while bloated labels like Island, MCA, and Interscope, among others, get around to listening to the album and then decide whether they can make any money off of it or whether they should let the band go. Says Sean Nelson, "Island Records, the first in line, has passed. Though it's never fun to be rejected, I must say that the guy who passed on it was the same guy who signed Britney Spears and the Backstreet Boys; he was given a record label to run for his accomplishments. That oughta last...."
If all the labels who have dibs on Harvey Danger's contract pass on the album, the band will then be set free, and Nelson says they'll probably go back to the London label, which is still dying to put out the record. "It's funny to me that we did so much to try to not make the mistakes other bands made when diving into the major-label miasma," says Nelson. "We turned down a lot of money; we kept the scope small; we fought for control, etc. We thought that if we went into it with good intentions, we would be served well. How funny is it that directly because of those good intentions, we're now triply fucked?"
Until the crap works itself out, Harvey Danger will be playing shows with their new members John Roderick and Mike Squires, including a one-off Hazel reunion on Saturday, April 29 at the Showbox.
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Tuesday, March 7 saw the opening of Raygunomics Tuesdays at I-Spy, a rotating free-for-all night featuring DJs, karaoke, and celebrity hosts. The inaugural evening was hosted by the lovely Kerri Harrop and Spencer Moody, who emceed a lively display of "new-wave-aoke" -- karaoke backed by a live band of oh-so-slick Canadians -- while Moody's bandmates Dann Gallucci and Derek Fudesco spun records on the mezzanine. A spirited bunch was assembled, to say the least, especially since the Murder City Devils were set to leave for a very long tour bright and early the next morning. Considering the amount of partying done, I bet it was a quiet drive to Boise.