Scans: Depeche Mode, Smashing Pumpkins, Cat Power, Page & Plant...

For the Masses is the name of an all-star tribute to dark popsters Depeche Mode that will be released in early June. Among the contributors are Smashing Pumpkins ("Never Let Me Down Again"), the Cure ("World In My Eyes"), God Lives Underwater ("Fly On The Windscreen"), Dishwalla ("Policy of Truth") and Locust ("Master and Servant"). More contributors are to be announced shortly ... Disinformation is the new name of the Seattle supergroup formerly known as Mad Season. Replacing Alice in Chains singer Layne Staley on vocals is Screaming Trees vocalist Mark Lanegan, who is joined by fellow Screaming Tree drummer Barrett Martin, Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready and bassist John Baker Saunders of the Walkabouts. The band will enter a studio in April to record vocals and finish tracks, with an eye toward an early fall release of this lineup's debut album ...

The latest issue of Australian fanzine Spunk features a limited edition 7" with previously unreleased recordings from the now-defunct Scud Mountain Boys, Built To Spill and Cat Power. The somber pop of the Built to Spill song, "Just a Habit," sits alongside the stark Cat Power single, "Nude As the News," which was recorded live for VPRO Radio in Holland. More importantly, for fans of the splintered Massachusetts slow-core band the Scud Mountain Boys, the track "Drew Got Shot" represents the band's final studio recording. Also included is a lo-fi recording by Brenden Webb of Australian pop group Sandpit, who contributes the track "Uno," under his solo handle B.L. Stryker ...

The full track-listing for the upcoming Page & Plant album, Walking Into Clarksdale -- the first full-length album of new material from former Led Zeppelin leaders Jimmy Page and Robert Plant since the dissolution of that pioneering metal band in the early '80s -- is: "Shining in the Light," "When the World Was Young," "Upon a Golden Horse," "Blue Train," "Please Read the Letter," "Most High," "Heart in Your Hand," "Walking Into Clarksdale," "Burning Up," "When I Was a Child," "House of Love" and "Sons of Freedom" ...

The latest additions to Rhino Records' home-video edition of the "Classic Albums" documentary series will focus on the making of Paul Simon's Graceland and Stevie Wonder's Songs In The Key Of Life. "Classic Albums" -- which showcases outtakes, interviews

and live performances conducted at the time the benchmark rock albums were

created -- originally aired on VH1 and is now being broadcast by PBS ...

Two of the heartiest bands in the Epitaph Records punk-rock stable will

have new releases this spring: Gas Huffer's Just Beautiful

Music and the Humpers' Euphoria, Confusion, Anger and Remorse both hit the street on April 21 ...

Among several standout tracks on the upcoming At Rope's End (April

7), the fifth album by Ohio punks New Bomb Turks, is a lament about

hero worship called "Bolan's Crash," referring to T. Rex leader

Marc Bolan, who died in a car wreck in 1977. Don't expect the song

to feature Rex-ish glam rock, however; the Turks' track actually reveals

some boozy country & western leanings with its use of pedal-steel guitar

and banjo ... Bassist Lisa Marr and drummer Lisa G, formerly of Canada's Cub, have formed a new band

tentatively called Buc ... -- ATN staff report [Fri., Feb. 20, 1998, 9 a.m. PST]

Legendary songwriter Brian Wilson is revisiting the sound of his early to mid-1960s heyday with the Beach Boys on Imagination, his first solo record of new material since 1988's Brian Wilson. "It is vintage Beach Boys, old stuff, like 'Good Vibrations,' " said Jean MacDonald, head of Giant Records publicity. Wilson has worked on Imagination for the past six months with co-producer Joe Thomas, and it's slated for a May 26 release on Giant. Carole Bayer Sager, J.D. Souther and Jimmy Buffett each co-wrote material with Wilson for the new record. Guest musicians include horn player Paul Mertens (Poi Dog Pondering) and guitarist Greg Leisz (Beck, k.d. lang) ...

Stunned by the lukewarm audience reaction from the

front rows at the Burswood Dome in Perth at the Feb. 17 start of U2's Australian tour, Bono claimed at a press conference yesterday that ticket prices of up to $300 (as part of a deal with the local casino) had kept real fans at a

distance from the band. "The rich jobs seemed to get the front seats," Bono said. "That stinks. So we're kind of angry about that." The furor over ticket prices overshadowed U2's tribute to Michael Hutchence during the concert. "Australia is his home," explained Bono. "We wanted to do something here" ...

The title of the long-awaited sixth Fugazi album is End Hits.

The collection is due out April 27 ... Skinnerbox and Stubborn

All-Stars leader King Django has founded a new imprint -- called,

appropriately, King Django Records -- to handle the vinyl releases of his

Stubborn Records label ... "Blue Is Beautiful," the film about the semi-gospel punk group Make-Up, will be released on video by Dischord Records on April 6, the same day the band's fourth album, In Mass

Mind, (also on Dischord) hits the streets ...

Grant Lee Buffalo will release a new album, Jubilee, on June 9. The group's fourth album does not feature bass player Paul Kimble, who left the band last year. Among the guests on the 14-song effort, produced by Paul Fox (XTC) are: R.E.M. singer Michael Stipe, who provides backing vocals along with E of the Eels and Robyn Hitchcock, and Wallflowers keyboardist Rami Jaffee. The first single is "Truly, Truly" ... A new college-only promotional EP from Radiohead features four never-before-released-in-the-U.S. tracks. The College Karma EP contains the four U.K. B-sides "Polyethylene (Parts 1 & 2)," "Pearly," "A Reminder" and "Melatonin," as well as the OK Computer album versions of "Karma Police" and "Paranoid Android" ...

Self-proclaimed "king of pop" Michael Jackson has announced plans for a fund-raising concert for the starving children of North Korea that is tentatively being dubbed "We Are the World 2." The Associated Press reports that Jackson, who participated in the all-star 1985 "We Are the World" single for African famine relief, is planning to hold the Korean benefit show on Oct. 10 at that country's Olympic Stadium. Among the invited guests so far are opera singer Luciano Pavarotti, singing divas Whitney Houston and Celine Dion, Boyz II Men, actress Elizabeth Taylor and athletes Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods, according to a government spokesperson. Jackson has also reportedly requested taped messages from Pope John Paul II and South African President Nelson Mandela ... -- ATN staff report [Thurs., Feb. 19, 1998, 9 a.m. PST]

Former Led Zeppelin leaders

Robert Plant and Jimmy Page will release their

second collaborative album on April 21. The album, Walking Into

Clarksdale, was recorded and mixed by the idiosyncratic Steve

Albini, who "recorded" Nirvana's In Utero and Bush's Razorblade Suitcase (Albini always insists on the credit "recorded by," insisting that he is documenting, not producing) and produced by Plant and Page. The album of all new material co-written by Page and Plant follows the pair's million-selling 1994 No Quarter. The duo will play some warm-up dates in Europe in the spring, to be followed by a summer tour in the U.S. ...

"MMMbop"ers Hanson have just wrapped the video shoot for the song

"Weird," which was directed by Gus Van Sant ("Good Will Hunting,"

"Drugstore Cowboy"). The fourth single from the teenybopper's debut,

Middle of Nowhere, has just been released to radio. Hanson are

nominated for three Grammy awards and will be performing at the ceremony

next week ... Shock-rocker Marilyn Manson will make his

talk-show-guest debut on Thursday when he sits down on the "Late Show with

David Letterman." Manson, who will be promoting his recently released

autobiography, "The Long Hard Road Out of Hell," will have to share the

couch with fellow guest and ex-presidential candidate and former Senate

Majority Leader Bob Dole. "Manson is coming on to talk about his book, but

there could be something brewing. You never know what's going to happen,"

said Sheila Rogers, music segment producer for the show. Manson previously

appeared on the panel of the "Politically Incorrect" program ... U2

are in the process of launching their own dance label imprint, tentatively

titled Kitchen Records, named after The Kitchen, a Dublin nightclub run by

the Irish supergroup. No acts have been named to the label's roster yet ...

The controversial film "Kurt and Courtney," by British filmmaker Nick

Broomfield, will get its first big-screen showing during a three-week run

at San Francisco's Roxie Cinema beginning Feb. 27. The biopic of the late

Kurt Cobain and his life with wife Courtney Love of

Hole, which was pulled from the recent Sundance film festival after

Love's lawyers reportedly expressed their objection to some of the content

and to the unlicensed Hole and Nirvana music in the film,

nonetheless received a midnight screening at the rival Slamdunk festival

... England's New Musical Express reports that electro-pop

pioneers New Order will reform this July for a one-off performance

at Britain's Phoenix Festival. The group, which hasn't played together

since 1993's Reading Festival in England, has split into two factions, with

singer Bernard Sumner working with ex-Smiths guitarist

Johnny Marr in Electronic and bassist Peter Hook

working with his new band, Monaco ... -- ATN staff report

[Wed., Feb. 18, 1998, 9 a.m. PST]