Fans of Galaxie 500 and Luna can find new music from Dean Wareham and Britta Phillips in a transfixing environment worthy of their haunting, ethereal sounds. The pair, as Dean & Britta, has composed a soundtrack of sorts to a series of mute screen tests filmed by Andy Warhol at his factory, holding time as the subjects stare deeply into the camera's eye. Plexifilm releases the DVD experience next week, as 13 Most Beautiful ... Songs for Andy Warhol's Screen Tests, with the duo jumping out of its current Mercury Rev tour to perform the songs live on select dates, with projections of these vintage films as accompaniment. Two different editions of the DVD are available, with a deluxe edition featuring a hand-printed photo, selected from a single frame from one of the original films. Among the anointed by Warhol's eye include Lou Reed, Edie Sedgwick, and Nico.
Another cool DVD on the horizon is Shout! Factory's box set of performances from the charitable comedy shows collectively known as The Secret Policeman's Ball. The three-CD box, due at the end of this month, is titled The Secret Policeman's Balls and runs from their inception in 1976 through 1989. Musical stars dot the package in what was then a novelty - the unplugged setting - with Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush, Pete Townshend, Phil Collins, and Bob Geldof. Guitar duels find Mark Knopfler and Chet Atkins trading licks, as well as Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton bending strings.
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno welcomes Brett Dannen on Wednesday, Mute Math on Thursday, and O.A.R. on Tuesday; The Late Show with David Letterman hosts Randy Rogers Band Wednesday and The Airborne Toxic Event on Friday; Late Night with Conan O'Brien boasts Q-Tip on Monday and Susan Tedeschi on Tuesday overnight; The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson presents Seal on Monday; Tavis Smiley sits down with Lionel Richie on Friday; and Austin City Limits features the Foo Fighters this weekend.
New Releases Coming Tuesday, January 20
The 1900's - Medium High (Parasol) seven-song CD EP of outtakes and B sides
G.G. Allin & the Murder Junkies - The Best of (MVD) "best of the worst" DVD collection
Antony & the Johnsons - The Crying Light (Secretly Canadian) on tour now, including Knoxville's Big Ears Festival
Atmosphere - God Loves Ugly (Rhymesayers) deluxe reissue from 2002 featuring a custom sleeve and the bonus Sad Clown Bad Dub DVD
BeauSolil - Alligator Purse (Yep Roc) the 29th album from the Cajun superstars, featuring a cover of J.J. Cale's "The Problem" and guests Garth Hudson and Natalie Merchant
Andrew Bird - Noble Beast (Fat Possum) also available in a deluxe edition featuring the bonus instrumental album Useless Creatures
The Black Ghosts - The Black Ghosts (Universal Republic) fueled by a track that shows up in the film Twilight; with guest Damon Albarn on "Repetition Kills You"
Robbert Bobbert - Robbert Bobbert & the Bubble Machine (Little Monster Records) alter-ego children's album from Robert Schneider of Apples In Stereo, singing the praises of elephants, superheroes, and clocks
Calexico - Live from Austin, Texas (New West) DVD of the band's 2006 appearance on the Austin City Limits stage, joined by Sam and Sarah Brown of Iron & Wine on "He Lays In Reins"
Mariah Carey - The Ballads (Columbia Legacy) 18-track compilation with guests Luther Vandross, Westlife, and Boyz II Men
Cash Cash - Take It to the Floor (Universal Republic) sugary sweet techno-pop from the New Jersey group formerly known as The Consequence
Clue To Kalo - Lily Perdida (Mush) Australian duo's clever concept album with 10 musical observations on the fictional character by her siblings, parents, confidantes, and peers
Cut Off Your Hands - You & I (Frenchkiss) serving up shivers of The Smiths in "Turn Cold"
Fiction Family - Fiction Family (ATO) new from Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek and Jon Foreman of Switchfoot
John Frusciante - The Empyrean (Record Collection) new from the talented Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist, with Flea and The Smiths' Johnny Marr
Tony Furtado - Deep Water (Funzalo) gorgeous new album from the slide guitar and banjo master, seeped in nature and redemption
Lisa Hannigan - Sea Sew (ATO Records) on tour now with Jason Mraz
Highly Kind - Don't Wake Albert (Rockin' Camel Music) featuring guests James Pennebaker on steel guitar and Randall Bramblett on keyboards, this debut spotlights 17-year-old guitar hotshot Josh Gooch
A Hope for Home - The Everlasting Man (Strike First Records) inspired by the G.K. Chesterton novel
Logan 5 & the Runners - Featurette (Otpor! Records) time-traveling back to the days of Duran Duran, The Cars, and David Bowie, this Boston band is hooked on Moog synthesizers and platform boots
Kill Your Idols - Something Started Here 1995-2007 (Get Outta Town Records) seven-inch-singles box set compiling 38 songs from long out-of-print sources
Matt & Kim - Grand (Fader Label) with the arty synth glints of They Might Be Giants, Telex, and XTC, this delightful back-to-the-bedroom DIY album is fun, fun, fun
The Meatmen - Rock 'n' Roll Juggernaut (Meat King Records) reissue from 1986 on Tesco Vee's new artist-controlled imprint
Mindless Self Indulgence - "Evening Wear"/"Mark David Chapman" (The End) new CD single featuring a previously unreleased track and a QuickTime video
Jane Monheit - The Lovers, the Dreamers, & Me (Concord) featuring cool jazz covers of Fiona Apple's "Slow Like Honey" and Corrine Bailey Rae's "Like a Star"
A.C. Newman - Get Guilty (Matador) second solo album from The New Pornographers headmaster
Mark Olson & Gary Louris - Ready for the Flood (New West) first new music from the Jayhawks founders in more than 10 years
Robert Pollard - The Crawling Distance (Guided by Voices Inc.) all new in collaboration with Todd Tobias, featuring the ballad "It's Easy"
Sarah RabDAU & Self-Employed Assassins - Sarah RabDAU & Self-Employed Assassins (Say It with Scissors) piano/drum duo led by the powerful vocalist and free spirit, crafting a whirlwind of songs that range from Victorian to futuristic
The Refugees - Unbound (Wabuho Records) new folk "super group" trio of Cindy Bullens, Wendy Waldman, and Deborah Holland
Raymond Scott - 100th Anniversary (Press Pop) following up the toy company's Bob Moog edition, this limited-pressing CD of rarities comes with a six-inch-high vinyl figure of the legendary composer and his Clavivox keyboard
Six Organs of Admittance - RTZ (Drag City) also available on three LP records in a gatefold sleeve, this two-CD set of odds and sods features six live performances and lost singles
Swervedriver - Raise and Mezcal Head (Second Motion/Hi-Speed Soul Records) reissues from 1991 and 1993, with four bonus tracks on each
Titus Andronicus - The Airing of Grievances (XL Recordings) remastered reissue of the band's debut; on tour now with Los Campesinos
Umphrey's McGee - Mantis (SCI Fidelity Records) fan-friendly album featuring an escalating amount of free bonus material via Digital Insert's PUSH technology, based on how many pre-orders are sold
The Who - The Kids Are Alright (UMe) polished and restored back to the original director's cut, this enhanced two-disc DVD features multi-angle viewing, a documentary, and a trivia game
Wino - Punctuated Equilibrium (Southern Lord) produced by J. Robbins, this is the solo debut from the Obsessed, Saint Vitus, and Hidden Hand guitarist
John James can be found via cyberspace at firstname.lastname@example.org.