Sure, the obstruction of foreign musiciansattempting to breach the U.S. in the name of savory tunes has becomequite commonplace. But as of late last month, it appears Red, White,and Blue border officials have turned on our own, namely Death Cab for Cutie guitarist and knob twister extraordinaire Chris Walla, blocking his much-mooted solo record — titled Field Manual— from entering the states. “When the tapes and hard drives containingthe final mixes of his record were begin brought back into the U.S.from Canada where they were tracked and mixed, the U.S. customs peoplestopped the person bringing them across the border and ended upconfiscating the hard drives,” Josh Rosenfeld, president of Walla’slabel, Barsuk, told SPIN.com about the incident. “Myunderstanding is that the person at the border said that they wouldhold the drives for 24 hours and do some analysis on it, but then wehaven’t gotten the hard drive back.”
Luckily, Rosenfeldconfirms that despite the evident set back, the loss of the finalizedrecord is not a complete disaster: “It’s just caused a massive delay.”Now, Walla, whose original intention was to wrap the solo debut beforehitting the studio with Death Cab, now tracking their forthcomingrecord in Seattle, will have to log double duty, revamping unpolishedtapes in a rush to turn in the set in time for its slated Jan. 29release date. “It hasn’t been disastrous in terms of him being able tocomplete the record with his original vision intact,” Rosenfeldelaborated. “Chris is busily working in his off time when he’s not inthe studio with Death Cab trying to now refinish the record… it’s justgoing to be the most stressful possible version of getting the recordout.”
And possibly adding to the stress, is the politicallycharged content now in the hands of U.S. officials. “On the album hetakes more than a few shots at U.S. policy and there is one songdirected toward a particular U.S. senator who will remain nameless,”Rosenfeld confirms, before citing the forthcoming LP will shine newlight on Walla’s songwriting prowess. “He’s a relatively political guy,but it’s not like he’s out there chaining himself to the FederalBuilding or anything.”
So does Rosenfeld think the hard driveswill ever be returned? “Who knows!” the industry honcho proclaimed.”Both Chris’ management and the studio responsible for getting themback to us have been calling and the latest word is that it’s going tobe 30 days… but I’m not sure, I’ve never had an experience like thisbefore.”
Ghostface Killah Rants Over Release of Solo, Wu-Tang Albums
The battle of the coinciding album release date is well documented; in fact, Kanye and 50 Centare scholars on the topic. But the latest installment is brewing in themost unlikely of places: within the sacred walls of the Wu-Tang Clan. According to a MySpace post, Clan constituent Ghostface Killah is a bit upset with the freshly postponed release of the New York troupe’s forthcoming Beatles-channeling record 8 Diagrams, for the new effort will coincide with the release of his next solo set, The Big Dough Rehab.”I had December 4 for the longest,” Ghostface explained in the post.”But the Wu album, brothers was kinda late on doing whatever they weredoing and pushed it back… I’m not [mad at] all the members. It’s notbased on the members, but the hierarchy at Wu-Tang Clan is on somebullsh–.” Ghost continues on, stating if he had not joined the Clan’ssummer tour, his album would have already dropped, and also criticizesSteve Rifkind of Loud Records [label distributing 8 Diagrams] for making attempts to block the Big Dough Rehab from seeing the light of day. “It’s a battle right now,” said Ghostface.
Cornelius Maps New Year Tour
In continual support of Sensuous, his first long-player of new original material in over five years, experimental Japanese popster Corneliuswill head stateside once again for a handful of tour dates early nextyear. Kicking off with a show in Los Angeles Jan. 17, Cornelius”Sensuous Synchronized Show’ will hit cities like San Francisco,Chicago, Washington, D.C., and New York.
Cornelius tour dates:
1/17, Los Angeles, CA (Disney Symphony Hall)
1/18, San Francisco, CA (Fillmore Auditorium)
1/23, Chicago, IL (Metro)
1/25, Washington, DC (9:30 Club)
1/26, New York, NY (Webster Hall)