Move over Star Trek. Echo & The Bunnymen’s mighty 1984 album Ocean Rain will boldly go to the International Space Station on June 13th courtesy of astronaut Colonel Timothy L. Korpa.
Korpa, who has been a Bunnymen fanatic since his teens recently contacted the band via their website about his upcoming three-month mission on the ISS. Though Ocean Rain is Korpa’s favorite, he gave the choice to the band to pick which of their albums they would like him to take on his mission, saying that he would snap photos in space with the album and crew of the ISS and give the album back to the band as a souvenir when he returns to Earth. The Bunnymen ecstatically shipped out to Korpa an autographed copy of Ocean Rain right away.
“What an honour,” said Echo & The Bunnymen’s Ian McCulloch. “Now it’s official. We are the coolest band in the universe. As a kid I dreamt of being an astronaut, and now in a way it feels like I’m fulfilling that dream. I cannot wait to hear from Tim what it is like to listen to ‘The Killing Moon’ in the actual glow of the moon.”
The NASA mission happens to tie in with a box set reissue of Ocean Rain, set for release on May 30. The set will include a live version of the album recorded at the Liverpool Arena last November, plus a DVD documentary and booklet. The first 1000 copies ordered will be signed by McCulloch and guitarist Will Sergeant.
Following the success of last year’s Ocean Rain performances in London, NYC and Liverpool, two more of them are being planned in North America in 2009, and the band will perform the album when they headline the John Peel stage at Glastonbury on June 28th. Many of the songs on the album were written for a John Peel radio session so this will be a particularly special and poignant show. Echo & The Bunnymen will serve as a main stage headliner at All Points West in New York on August 2nd, will perform at this year’s Hop festival and the Electric Picnic and have also announced two dates in Liverpool in December:
- June 28th – Glastonbury – John Peel Stage
- July 4th – Hop Farm
- August 2nd – All Points West
- Sept. 4th – Electric Picnic
- Dec.18th – Liverpool 02 Academy
- Dec.19th – Liverpool 02 Academy
Ocean Rain, which has lived long and prospered since its release in 1984 was Echo & The Bunnymen’s fourth album and is widely considered their masterpiece. It mesmerized Echo’s fans and broke them to a much wider audience on the strength of such towering songs as “Silver,” “Seven Seas” and the unforgettable “The Killing Moon.”
The Bunnymen are currently in the studio putting finishing touches on their highly-anticipated tenth studio album entitled The Fountain, set for release later this year.