updated 06:12 pm EST, Wed February 26, 2014
90s grunge act Soundgarden to perform 'Superunknown' in full at concert
On the heels of the announcement that the iTunes Festival, a live music event held annually in London, will be extended to a week of shows in the US for the first time at this year's SXSW music festival, Apple has now announced that 90s rock act Soundgarden will join the lineup. The band, featuring its full original lineup, will perform its best-known album "Superunknown" in full during the concert, celebrating its 20th anniversary.
The US debut of the festival, which will run from March 11 through 15 in Austin Texas at the Moody Theater, will feature Soundgarden along with Coldplay, ZEDD, country star Keith Urban, London Grammar, Imagine Dragons and Pitbull. The concerts will stream live to Apple TV, iOS devices (through apps) and Macs (through a dedicated web page) during the events. Apple joins with many other tech companies in sponsoring events at the annual SXSW music conference, often seen as a showcase for up-and-coming acts while still anchored by mainstream pop and rock artists.
More album debuts appear on iTunes Radio
Bolstered by events such as David Bowie and Beyoncé's recent surprise album debuts, iTunes Radio is now hosting more "First Play" events, where users can stream the full content of forthcoming albums ahead of their official release date. The move appears to help presales and drum up interest in the new releases. Currently, albums by Lea Michele ("Louder"), Real Estate's new "Atlas," Pharrell Williams' "G I R L" and the new one from Rick Ross ("Mastermind") are available for streaming, and will be formally released for sale later this week.
The iTunes Radio service is also offering some special playlists, including "20 Feet From Stardom Radio" that showcases vocalists featured in the recent hit documentary about soulful backup performers; a playlist of songs featured in the popular Disney movie Frozen; a set focusing on "The Beatles in America" and guest DJs for the week John Legend, Bruno Mars and rapper B.o.B.