SOURCE: Atlantic Records

May 18, 2010 13:38 ET

Janelle Monáe Is Everywhere as Critically Acclaimed Debut Album Arrives; Grammy-Nominated Artist Set for Network TV Debut on Tonight's Late Show With David Letterman: Tour Supporting Erykah Badu Kicks Off May 28th; "The ArchAndroid" Available Now

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - May 18, 2010) -  Wondaland Arts Society/Bad Boy recording artist Janelle Monáe has slated a busy schedule surrounding today's release of her eagerly awaited debut album. "The ArchAndroid" is available now in stores and at all DSPs.

The album includes the acclaimed first single, "Tightrope (Feat. Big Boi)," which was hailed by Pitchfork as "a star performance all around" in its 9-out-of-10-rated review. The track's companion video -- directed by Wendy Morgan (Gnarls Barkley, Bloc Party) -- recently premiered across a range of MTV platforms, including MTV.com, mtvU, MTV Hits, MTV Jams, and VH1 Soul. In addition, "Tightrope" debuted as a "New Joint of the Day" on a recent installment of BET's 106 & Park.

Monáe is slated for a variety of live dates and TV appearances surrounding the release of "The ArchAndroid." She will make her national TV debut with a performance on tonight's installment of CBS' Late Show with David Letterman, followed by visits to the nationally syndicated Ellen DeGeneres Show on Wednesday, May 26th and NBC's Last Call with Carson Daly on Friday, May 28th (check local listings). Furthermore, Janelle is set to appear on imminent episodes of both TBS' Lopez Tonight and BET's The Mo'Nique Show.

Janelle will also be joining Erykah Badu on her upcoming spring tour, kicking off Friday, May 28th at Washington, DC's Constitution Hall, and then traveling the US through late June (see itinerary below). What's more, Monáe -- who has previously toured with No Doubt, Paramore, and Raphael Saadiq -- will be among the stars appearing at this summer's much anticipated 2010 Lilith Tour, joining a star-studded array of female artists that includes Sarah McLachlan, Norah Jones, Mary J. Blige, Loretta Lynn, Tegan & Sara, Sara Bareilles, Colbie Caillat, and many others. Janelle will appear on the trek's two North Carolina stops, slated for Wednesday, August 4th at Raleigh's Time Warner Cable Pavilion and Friday, August 6th at Charlotte's Verizon Wireless Amphitheater.

A charismatic and unique performer, Monáe has received critical acclamation in recent weeks for her extraordinary live shows. "To witness Janelle Monáe is to see not a star in the making," hailed the Washington Post, "but one who is fully formed and rocketing across the sky on her own fuel." "With creativity to burn, she's proven to be both an exhilarating performer and an immaculate sonic architect," noted the Philadelphia Inquirer, while the LA Weekly affirmed "Janelle reigns supreme as pomped-out alien queen, belting some curious combination of straight-up funk and futuristic dancepunk." "It's like seeing the Boss play the Main Point in the '70s or listening to Aretha Franklin right after she signed with Atlantic," declared the Philadelphia City Paper, adding, "Mark my words, Monáe's gonna hit it huge."

"The ArchAndroid" has also drawn rapturous early reviews, with Paste hailing the album as "a fully immersive, theatrical experience. It's a near-perfect R&B album; hell, it's a fantastic hip-hop, psychedelic, neo-soul, dance and orchestral album too." Spin awarded the album 4-and-a-half (out of 5) stars, praising Janelle for "(boasting) so much shape-shifting talent that she had to invent an android persona just to begin to accommodate it." The Associated Press called "The ArchAndroid" a "near classic" debut album that "delivers something extraordinary, different and heroic."

Furthermore, "Tightrope" has been praised as one of 2010's finest singles, including this out-and-out rave in Billboard: "To say that Janelle Monáe merges R&B, funk and rock 'n' roll isn't enough -- she's simply ahead of her time...'Tightrope' is a genre-blasting, cinematic fantasy that finds the Atlanta artist seesawing between retro and futuristic and remaining fearless throughout." 

Currently starring on the covers of both Honey and Creative Loafing, Monáe is slated to receive a massive amount of press love in the coming weeks. Profiles and features have run or are set to run in such national publications as Vogue, InStyle, Rolling Stone, Teen Vogue, Vibe, Essence, Nylon, Spin, XXL, YRB, and Bleu.

In addition, MySpace Music recently presented the online world premiere of "The ArchAndroid" as part of "Introducing...," a new program aimed at helping to establish and break new artists through a combination of key promotional opportunities both online and offline. For more information, please visit www.myspace.com/music/introducing.

"The ArchAndroid" is an "EMOTION PICTURE" brought to you by Janelle Monáe and the Mad Minds of the Wondaland Arts Society. The star-studded featured cast includes the legendary Big Boi of OutKast, renowned poet Saul Williams, psychedelic dance-punk troupe Of Montreal, punk prophets Deep Cotton, and the Emory Symphony Orchestra.

The album was recorded at Wondaland Studios in Atlanta, but written all over the world, including but not limited to Moscow, Prague, Istanbul, Berlin, Amsterdam, New York, and the Palace of the Dogs. "The ArchAndroid" was inspired not only by the energy of these places, but by such revolutionary musicians and artistic visionaries as Salvador Dalí, Walt Disney, OutKast, Stevie Wonder, Octavia Butler, David Bowie, Andy Warhol, and John Williams. The album was Executive Produced by Nate Wonder, Chuck Lightning, Janelle Monáe, and Sean "Diddy" Combs, with Co-Executive Production from Big Boi of OutKast.

A ground-breaking, genre-blurring singer, songwriter, producer, and performer, Monáe's inventive style melds a refined pop sensibility with an extraordinary postmodern mash-up of soul, funk, and rock 'n' roll. Like Sly Stone, Prince, and OutKast, Monáe proves that innovative music can jam, while simultaneously inventing new concepts and sounds. "The ArchAndroid" follows the Grammy Award-nominated artist's two acclaimed EPs, 2008's "METROPOLIS: THE CHASE SUITE (SPECIAL EDITION)" and "METROPOLIS: SUITE I OF IV," both of which received extensive critical praise upon their initial releases.

Janelle Monáe is a true 21st Century musical phenomenon, earning widespread acclamation for her compelling cybersoul sound. The Atlanta-based artist -- who first garnered national attention for her collaborations with Big Boi on OutKast's "IDLEWILD" -- has been profiled in a wide range of national publications, including Vogue, GQ, SPIN, Nylon, PAPER, Essence, and the New York Times.

"A very different kind of diva," declared Vogue. "Monáe creates this futuristic world of hers by synthesizing past inspirations: the operatic pop and hornlike sharpness of Shirley Bassey, the energetic funk of James Brown, and the breezy rock and soul of OutKast," said Creative Loafing. "'It's been awhile since I felt so fully enraptured and bemused and awed as I did when she was on stage," proclaimed Paste, while Vibe noted "Monáe's upcoming album is poised to bring an eclectic, urbane feel to today's R&B." "Janelle Monáe is honing her completely individual skills as a very exciting solo artist," said the UK's Blag, "not only in sound but very much in style."

Monáe has also drawn accolades from fellow artists across the musical spectrum. "What I love about Janelle is that she has a magical ability to bring folks together," says Big Boi, while his partner in OutKast, Andre "3000" Benjamin declares, "Ms. Monáe has one of the most enchanting voices of our generation. She's a living, singing babydoll. Darling... just darling. Ha."

Prince hails Janelle, saying, "She is so smart." "Janelle Monáe is one of the most important signings of my career," proclaims Sean "Diddy" Combs. "She is a true visionary, with an original sound and a mesmerizing presence. I can't wait to watch the future unfold for Janelle."

For additional information, please visit www.janellemonae.com and www.myspace.com/janellemonae.

(TOUR ITINERARY BELOW)

Janelle Monáe
On Tour 2010
5/28-6/24 w/Erykah Badu * 8/4-6 w/Lilith Fair 2010

MAY            
28     Washington, DC     Constitution Hall
30     Baltimore, MD     The Pier
             
JUNE            
2, 3     Chicago, IL     Chicago Theater
4     Detroit, MI     Chene Park
6     Boston, MA     Orpheum
7     New York, NY     Roseland Ballroom
8     Philadelphia, PA     Tower
10     Memphis, TN     Orpheum
13     Houston, TX     Verizon Wireless Amphitheater
14     Dallas, TX     Nokia Live
16     Denver, CO     Fillmore Auditorium
18     Oakland, CA     Paramount Theatre
20     Los Angeles, CA     Greek Theater
22     San Diego, CA     Humphrey's
23     Phoenix, AZ     Marquee Theatre
24     Las Vegas, NV     The Pearl At The Palms
             
AUGUST            
4     Raleigh, NC     Time Warner Cable Music Pavilion
6     Charlotte, NC     Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre

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