XTC Make A Comeback

XTC are set to release their first new albums in nearly a decade in 1999. "Apple Venus Volume One" is set for a February 16 release. The album features largely acoustic and orchestral material. It is set to be followed later in the year with (yes, you guessed it) "Apple Venus Volume Two", a more pop-oriented record.

Happy Holidays From Excellent

Excellent Online wishes you a VERY happy holiday season and a fabulous New Year. Stay tuned for our 1998 Wrap-Up, you'll be seeing it soon. In the meantime, go shut the computer off, eat some turkey, and say "hi" to the loved ones for us...

Happy Mondays Reform!

Get those baggy trousers out of the mothballs, because the HAPPY MONDAYS are reforming!!!! Shaun Ryder has announced his intentions of putting the band back together for a 1999 tour. Just exactly WHO will be in this new incarnation of the Mondays has yet to be decided, but Ryder has made it clear that he's in the market for a new lead guitarist and a new keyboard player. As for Bez...?

Embrace And Gene May Lose US Record Deal

Here's another one off the rumour mill: we've been hearing insider whispers that the next UK bands shortlisted to lose their record deals in the States are EMBRACE (who were planning a US tour in '99,) and GENE (who are readying their next album now.) Again, these are just rumours, but you might want to secure those importer connections now.

Placebo Suck! Placebo Suck! (no, they don't)

PLACEBO got involved into a bit of a backstage row with Limp Bizkit while appearing at New York station K-ROCK's annual Low Dough Show. Apparantly, Placebo followed right after Kid Rock, whose stage show included strippers and midgets and the like. Placebo frontman Brian Molko took to the stage apologizing for their lack of "strippers and ponies." This apparantly was not the right thing to say in front of Limp Bizkit's Fred Durst, who was emcee-ing the affair.


SFA Ink a US Deal

It's certainly a bit overdue, but the SUPER FURRY ANIMALS have secured a new US record deal with the rising American indie label Flydaddy (home to the Olivia Tremor Control, among others.) The second SFA album, "Radiator," (released in the UK in 1997,) will finally see a stateside release this March. There are plans to package a limited number of the release with "Outspaced," the SFA b-sides/rarities album recently out in Europe.

Free Ian!

Lovable, huggable Monkey boy IAN BROWN gets released from the pokey this week on good behavior, after serving half of his sentence in Strangeways Prison for his infamous airborne antics earlier this year on a trans-European flight. Brown has cancelled all pending tour plans to instead begin work on his second solo album. In the meantime, we can look forward to a one-off single with Brown and U.N.K.L.E., due out in the UK in February.

All Saints Split

It looked as though it was all over this week for pop sensations ALL SAINTS. (Awwww...) It appeared that Saint Nic (she's the one engaged to ROBBIE WILLIAMS, those of you with scorecards) had left the group after missing some recent key appearances with the band. Instead, a press statement was issued contradicting the split, saying that the band was planning some time apart over the holidays to sort everything out. You can cancel the crisis hotlines, at least for now...

Wrekked Train Leaves Lo-Fi All Stars

We've got yet another casualty before the end of the year: Just as their debut album scored a US release date, the LO FIDELITY ALL STARS have split with their vocalist, Wrekked Train. The rest of the band intend to carry on under the Lo-Fi name, just with a different vocalist.

Elastica Split

With good news comes a dose of bad. NME is reporting this week that they have confirmation on the demise of ELASTICA. Rumours of the split have dogged the band all year -- Donna Matthews has been involved with a new group, while sources say that Justine and Donna havn't spoken to one another all year. NME revealed this week that one of their writers heard straight from Justine that the band were finished.