Michael Hutchence Solo LP Date Reset; Suicide Controversy Continues

It’s been close to two years since the death of INXS singer Michael Hutchence, but the man is far from forgotten, and his memory is hardly resting in peace.

Hutchence’s solo album, which was close to completion at the time of the singer’s death in November 1997 (and subsequently finished by producer Danny Saber), is now scheduled to be released on October 26, according to a spokesperson for V2 records.

The date follows a series of long delays, largely attributed to the legal wrangling over the singer’s estate (see “Michael Hutchence Solo Album Set For Summer Release” ), and to a lesser extent, a new label deal and an INXS management change.

The label spokesperson told MTV News that the solo CD is as yet untitled and that it’s not yet known how many songs, or which titles, will be included. The label had also hoped to be reissuing the Max Q side project recorded by Hutchence and Aussie punk star Ollie Olsen in 1989, but the
status of that release is still up in the air, the spokesperson added.

Meanwhile, news stories are appearing almost daily in the U.K. and Australia, pitting Hutchence family members against the band, one another, and Hutchence’s fiancĂ©e Paula Yates, not to mention the singer’s estate executors (see “Michael Hutchence Estate In Legal Battle” ). A recent report in the Australian “Daily Telegraph” said that Hutchence’s mother, Patricia Glassop, and sister, Tina Hutchence, were suing the members of INXS, but that story was denied by his father, Kelland Hutchence, who is divorced from Glassop.

The senior Hutchence called the report out of context and totally inaccurate in a rebuttal printed by the “Newcastle Herald.” In his statement, he said there was no strife of any kind between the Hutchence family and the band, although he reiterated that the family had major issues with the executors of the late singer’s will, whom he said were
treating the family “disgracefully.”

Most recently, controversy over the cause of Hutchence’s death has again erupted, thanks to the airing of a documentary in England on August 17 that centered on Yates offering up a mound of evidence in an attempt to prove that Hutchence’s death by hanging was the accidental result of autoerotic asphyxiation, not suicide. Kelland Hutchence immediately issued statements and made media appearances bitterly disputing Yates’ claims.

Yates, who’s been on a media tear of late, is also quoted in the new issue of England’s “OK!” magazine as saying that Terence Trent D’Arby will be INXS’s new frontman, admitting in the process that she had had a year-long affair with the American singer. D’Arby, who has been denying reports that he’d be a permanent replacement, recently sat in with the surviving INXS members at a brief stadium appearance in Sydney in June (see “INXS Regroups With Terence Trent D’Arby For Stadium
Show”
).

In other Hutchence news, the U.K.’s “Ireland On Sunday” newspaper reports that U2′s Bono has penned a song that pays tribute to Hutchence. The tune is said to be earmarked for the Irish band’s new album, which is expected out early next year. The paper reports that Bono and Hutchence became fast friends in the late ’80s when they bought neighboring villas in the south of France, and Bono was widely reported to have been devastated by the singer’s sudden death.