April 1 has always been the date some of the biggest bands on the planet decide to make some of the strangest announcements ever.
On this very day last year , Coldplay announced the release of their brand-new fragrance, Angst, a musky, aromatic mixture of “sangre, sudor and lágrimas” that came packaged in a “Brian Eno-designed bottle.” And fan sites of “American Idol” fave Adam Lambert took it upon themselves to break the news that not only would Lambert star in the annual “Radio City Christmas Spectacular” but a remake of MGM’s “Wizard of Oz,” alongside fellow “Idol” alum Carrie Underwood (strangely, none of those things actually ended up happening).
Two years ago , Kid Rock chose April 1 as the date to announce he’d acquired the naming rights to his hometown Detroit Tigers’ stadium, while Trent Reznor dropped his Strobe Light album, a collaboration with Timbaland, Justin Timberlake and Alicia Keys. Coldplay and Björk also broke big news, announcing that they were recording an album in zero gravity and touring with the reunited Led Zeppelin, respectively.
So, needless to say, this year, we were ready for anything. And like clockwork, the bizarre headlines started pouring in.
First up was the news that squeaky-clean Oklahoma trio Hanson had decided to release an album of Slipknot covers, in an apparent attempt to channel their inner rage.
“We have always cited classic soul and rock and roll as an inspiration,” drummer Zac Hanson told Shockhound.com. “But we have had longtime respect for heavy metal bands like Slipknot who capture true angst.”
The brothers also released a video of themselves rehearsing a cover of Slipknot’s “Wait and Bleed,” and though their ’Knot album still has no title or release date, it will apparently also feature re-workings of “Skin Ticket,” “The Heretic Anthem,” and “People = Sh–.”
Next came the rather shocking announcement from avant-noise label BLR Records that they had partnered with none other than Insane Clown Posse to release Magnets, Bitches and Tape Loops, a collection of experimental recordings available only as an LP with “a full-color custom-made book-bound sleeve and 29-page booklet of lyrics, photos from the infamous studio sessions and di– jokes,” and in an ultra-limited ebony box, complete with ivory inlay (“no elephant was spared for this release”), a bonus remix album (Magnets, Seriously, How Do They Work?) and a collection of sundry that includes “a coupon for a free bottle of Faygo, a miniature hatchet … and a signed and numbered certificate in what we think is blood but actually is bar-b-que sauce.”
And of course, the guys in Coldplay didn’t let us down. Visitors to their official site were greeted on April 1 with footage taken from the BBC’s long-lost 1957 documentary on “the wonderful spaghetti harvest” being held in the Swiss canton of Ticino. In the gripping film, we watch the time-honored tradition that takes “home grown Swiss Spaghette” from the vine (or tree) to the table, and as you probably remember, the 1957 harvest was especially bountiful, given — as the documentary explains — “the virtual disappearance of the Spaghette Weevil.”
And after watching it, not only are we hungry, but we’re puzzled too. What is it about April 1 anyway?