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June 11, 2004

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Jeremy C. Baron reports:
Pedro the Lion, who, following the death of Creed, may now claim the title of Christian Rock's Biggest Band (except Stryper), know how to swing them some bonus tour cash, and are officially ready to strike the fear of God into your wallet on their latest U.S. jaunt. The merch? A brand new tour-only EP containing live in-studio recordings of three previously released tracks, and three covers of songs by Radiohead, Cat Power, and Randy Newman. Though these things always seem to show up somewhere after the fact, you can be reasonably sure that this one's going to sell out. Unless it doesn't. Tracklist:

01 Transcontinental (live in-studio recording)
02 I Am Always The One Who Calls (live in-studio recording)
03 Slow and Steady Wins The Race (live in-studio recording)
04 Political Science (Randy Newman)
05 Metal Heart (Cat Power)
06 Let Down (Radiohead)

And don't you love it when you get a little something extra? Oh wait, I'm sorry, that's a gum commercial. But! There's more to this touring story we're in the middle of telling. You see, for every one of Pedro's many tour dates, the band will post a live MP3 to their website for download. The catch, however, is that-- much like Wilco did with their More Like the Moon EP-- a purchase of Pedro's newly released Achilles Heel LP is required to download the tracks. And they've got the technology to make it happen.

The MP3s will showcase a variety of material, including live tracks, soundchecks, and in-store performances. One track will be posted for each of Pedro's gigs at 2 p.m. Central time, and will available for download for a period of just 24 hours. According to Pedro manager Bob Andrews, the limit is in place partly to encourage more site traffic, and to prevent mass bandwidth use. The postings will take place on a one week delay, with the first MP3 posted this Wednesday, and the last available a week after the tour ends. The band sends Andrews a burned CD of recordings every few days, and he chooses which MP3s will ultimately make it onto the site.

The idea for the giveaway came up during the Achilles recording sessions. Andrews explains: "Back when David [Bazan] and T.W. [Walsh] were recording and mixing the album they would post final mixes on our web server as soon as they were done with each song. Then I could download them right away to check them out. So every night I had another new song. It was exciting to get a new song everyday. So we thought it might be cool to do something that might give fans a similar experience-- getting something new everyday, stuff that everyone else does not have. It also seems like a good way for people who don't live in towns where the band is playing to be able to check out the live stuff."

Pedro the Lion started their tour (along with John Vanderslice) back in May 28th, and are on the road until July 10th. Ten of the dates will be filmed for an upcoming 2005 tour DVD. And since you undoubtedly want to check it out, we'll post the dates again. And we'll do it just like this:

06-11 Dallas, TX - Trees
06-12 Little Rock, AR - Vino's
06-13 Nashville, TN - Exit / In
06-14 Atlanta, GA - Echo Lounge
06-15 Columbia, SC - New Brookland Tavern
06-16 Charlottesville, VA - Star Hill Music Hall
06-17 Washington, DC - Black Cat
06-18 Lancaster, PA - The Chameleon
06-19 Philadelphia, PA - First Unitarian Church
06-20 Brooklyn, NY - North Six
06-21 New York, NY - Knitting Factory
06-22 Cambridge, MA - Middle East Club
06-24 Toronto, Ontario - Horseshoe Tavern
06-25 Buffalo, NY - Mohawk Place
06-26 Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop
06-27 Detroit, MI - Magic Stick
06-28 Chicago, IL - Abbey Pub
06-29 Chicago, IL - Abbey Pub
06-30 Minneapolis, MN - First Avenue
07-01 Milwaukee, WI - Wehr Hall
07-02 Iowa City, IA - Gabe's Oasis
07-03 Bushnell, IL - Cornerstone Festival
07-05 Omaha, NE - Sokol Underground
07-06 Denver, CO - Bluebird Theater
07-07 Salt Lake City, UT - In the Venue
07-08 Boise, ID - Big Easy
07-09 Portland, OR - Crystal Ballroom
07-10 Seattle, WA - Showbox

Pitchfork Media

Jeremy C. Baron