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State of the Airwaves

Brit Rock, Bond, and Brazen Acts of Injustice

By Dan Katz

Staff Writer

For anyone who was wondering when tickets for the October 29th Fuel concert at the Avalon is going on sale, the answer is never. WBCN and are giving away all the tickets free as contest prizes, much like WAAF’s Danzig concert on Halloween. Radio stations put on these “listener parties” relatively often, and it really irritates me. National acts with heavy touring schedules are likely to play a city every four months, and it doesn’t seem fair to tell a band’s biggest fans they can’t necessarily get in. Especially warped is the promotion, which isn’t even asking for contest entries but is instead giving tickets away to random Boston-area students. Nice to know that a random BU student who only listens to classical music has as much of a chance as getting tickets as a Fuel die-hard.

Now that my whining is done with, let’s talk about something positive: the new Foo Fighters single and video. “Learn To Fly” has a very warm and comforting sound to it; it’s the kind of song for anyone who found “Everlong” too spastic but “Walking After You” too subtle. To back that up, it’s got the best Foo Fighters video premise since “Big Me” connected a boring song with Mentos ads. The new video is a parody of “Airplane!” and features the band members portraying almost everybody in the cast. There’s just something about hearing Dave Grohl singing that he’s going to learn to fly while his plane goes down in flames that makes you smirk.

Concerts, concerts, concerts. Ash, the band that brought you “Goldfinger” and “Girl From Mars,” will be at the Middle East Sunday night. Another fine British import hits the Paradise Rock Club the next night: Stereophonics, whose new album, “Performances and Cocktails,” is being heralded as the greatest thing since sliced bread. But most importantly, whatever you do, find somebody who goes to Tufts and make them get you a ticket to the on-campus They Might Be Giants show on Wednesday. You won’t be sorry.

I have yet to decide how I feel about Garbage’s “The World Is Not Enough,” the theme song for the upcoming James Bond movie of the same name. I guess I have to respect the traditionalism of keeping the Bond feel to the song, but the song starts out sounding like “Milk” and transforms into a carbon copy of every other Bond theme when the chorus comes in. Rather than meld the sounds of Garbage and spy music, the group disappointingly chose to staple them next to each other. Much more intriguing is Propellerheads’ “Badseat Driver,” a mutation of their remix of “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” that appears in the movie trailer and keeps it moving at breakneck speed. (And isn’t it nice to see a Props song other than “Spybreak!” in a movie trailer?)

That Rage Against The Machine Tower appearance I was foreshadowing last week? November 4th at 7pm, at the Tower Records on Newbury Street. If you really want to get in, I recommend getting there extremely early -- like tomorrow.

And just one more sign of the apocalypse: the last two Marcy Playground singles, “Comin’ Up Wrong,” and the just-released “It’s Saturday,” are both very good. Clearly the laws of the universe have been altered and any minute the newspaper in your hands is going to turn into a wolverine. Run for your life.

Still here? So am I, so write me an e-mail. Let me know what new bands you’re into, any good concerts coming up that no one knows about, or where I can get an inexpensive haircut at <>. I’m sure to be eternally grateful and shower you with extravagant gifts. Until next week, keep expanding your horizons.