Utada: Fresh New Artist

21-year-old singer/songwriter Utada will offer a fresh new sound for music fans this Fall when her US debut album, EXODUS, is released Oct. 5 on Island. An enigmatic fusion of alternative, pop, dance and funk grooves, EXODUS features witty lyrics and well-crafted melodies. The first remix single on the album is “Devil Inside,” an hypnotic dance track laced with electronic Asian-flavored beats that is sure to be a club favorite. Another winning track is the sunny pop melody “Easy Breezy,” which will be the first radio single off the album.

Pop Team Records Album For The Olympic Games

MTV News reports that Destiny’s Child, Avril Lavigne, Lenny Kravitz, Public Enemy, Moby and many other artists from across the globe will contribute to ‘Unity’, the official Athens 2004 Olympic Games album, which comes out August 10. Lavigne will perform Bob Dylan’s ‘Knockin’ on Heavens Door’, while most of the other tracks will feature collaborations between two or more acts, including Timbaland, Utada and Kiley Dean (‘By Your Side’); Destiny’s Child and Will.I.Am (‘I Know’); Lenny Kravitz and Kadim Al Sahir (‘We Want Peace’); Public Enemy and Moby (‘MKLFKWR’), Wayne Wonder and Neneh Cherry (‘Eyes on the Prize’) and Alice Cooper and Xzibit (‘Stand’).

Hikki Gets Married, Male Fans In Mourning

Reuters reports one of Japan’s top-selling pop stars, 19-year-old Utada Hikaru (aka Hikki), announced on Friday she had married, sparking news flashes on national television and sending her legions of male fans into mourning. “Some people may be wondering why I should get married so young, when I am not even pregnant… But it is a natural decision for me to spend my life with someone I love,” she said of her marriage to Kazuaki Kiriya, the director of many of her music videos, who is in his mid-30s.

Japan’s Britney Resting After Suffering Side Effects From Meds

The most popular pop music artist in Japan, Hikaru Utada, aka. Hikki, is recovering from side effects from medication taken after an operation in early April to remove a benign tumor from an ovary. The singer posted on her official website, “I’m sorry for surprising you and making you worry. I am going to rest a bit until I can work properly, as announced by my father and Toshiba-EMI. Now I am at home resting quietly. Don’t worry!” Hikki signed a deal earlier this year to release her first album in English.