[PHOTO: Amy Bramhall] Pitchfork reported here very non-detailed and seemingly exclusive news Friday that Birmingham, England-based indie rock superheroes Johnny Foreigner have inked an agreement to release their exceptional full-length debut Waited Up Til It Was Light on Nettwerk in North America this fall. As of yet there is no acknowledgment of the deal at the Nettwerk web site, or at the Johnny Foreigner MySpace. But the agreement makes a lot of sense when viewed in the context of this news that MAMA Group, the parent of Johnny Foreigner's UK label Best Before, acquired a 20% stake in Vancouver-based Nettwerk last November for $6M. All of which makes us wonder whether Johnny Foreigner is the "up-and-coming British act" referred to in this Ad Age article last month. And, of course, whether the Nettwerk deal was sort of pre-ordained.
But enough of this biz reporting. Waited Up Til It Was Light, which was issued by Best Before June 2, will be released in the U.S. and Canada in October, although a specific date has not been reported [we reviewed the record here last month]. Looking at our Google Calendar, the set will be in North American retail racks on either the 7th, 14th, 21st or 28th of October. How's that for some crackerjack reporting? We've been told that a potential U.S. tour for late this year has already been dreamed up and scrapped, but we wonder if this news about the Nettwerk deal changes things. Right now Johnny Foreigner's touring commitments, at least those that are enumerated at its MySpace wigwam, are completed as of Oct. 8, when the trio will play a hometown show with Sunset Cinema Club and the bright new Distophia-offshoot Calories. All of which means, possibly -- just possibly -- the band could rock U.S. shores later this fall.
Today Johnny Foreigner play Canterbury, England's Lounge On The Farm festival, and you can see all their tour dates at the above-referenced MySpace. Music fans may recall Nettwerk as being relatively forward-thinking with regards to digital music and the Internet in general. Its director of marketing was quoted recently in a Wall Street Journal piece "Indie Artists Drum Up Corporate Ties," and Nettwerk last week disclosed a revenue sharing and marketing partnership with chat app Meebo; the label also sells music through P2P play LimeWire's music store in addition to the usual battery of digital music storefronts. Nettwerk is comprised of substantial recorded music, publishing and management operations that work with artists including Avril Lavigne, Sarah McLachlan and Josh Rouse. With all due respect to those artists, they don't rock. So here's some rock music.
Johnny Foreigner --
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