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Blogcritics Goodie Bag: Plajia, The Zutons, Robyn Hitchcock, Sandy Thom The Decemberists video contest, and UKG

Plajia is a Montreal based ambient rock band with diverse influences such as: The Flaming Lips, Radiohead, Supertramp, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and Paul McCartney. Since its inception in 2001, Plajia has been a serious and ambitious rock band striving to be one step ahead of the pack. With four demos under its belt and the experience acquired over the last five years, Plajia is finally ready to undertake their first "real" album slated to be released in a few months. Lead singer and songwriter Patrick Pleau provides a deep and expressive voice, sensitive lyrics, impeccable rhythms and arrangements, harmonized acoustic and electric guitars, pianos, synthesizers and common energy to make Plajia a band worth of the same attention given to more established Canadian artists. Check out a few tracks from their upcoming album: "Sleeping," "The Party," and "Am I A Magician?."

The Zutons will release a new single "It’s the Little Things We Do" (lo|hi) from their second album Tired Of Hanging Around on Monday. The band, who have just returned from a Japanese tour, is about to head out on a sold out UK tour in November and December.

Robyn Hitchcock, a legend in the rock world, has released a video for "Adventure Rocketship" from the album Olé! Tarantula. It takes you on a ride through time with animation to illustrate lyrics that will be stuck in your head for days to come. Made by the same animator of Grandaddy’s last video, the imagery and vividness of “Adventure Rocketship” is like nothing out there right now.

Last winter, Scottish singer-songwriter Sandi Thom gained a world-wide audience through half-hour webcam concerts. The first night, 70 people tuned in to watch. The next night it went up to 670. And by the middle of the second week she was performing to an audience of 70,000. By then, the suits from every major record label had visited the flat to see the show for themselves. What they heard was a singer with a sensational voice – strong and expressive enough to fill the largest theatres, but also warm and soulful enough to win over hearts and minds in the most intimate of settings. Her first album (Smile… It Confuses People) is out on RCA now, and you can listen to the track "What If I'm Right."

Last week, mtvU launched a new contest with the Decemberists, aptly titled, "Re-animate the Decemberists" contest. The band recently commissioned an outside production company to do the animation for their new video, "O Valencia!," but when they got it back, they were less than pleased. So they came to mtvU and tapped our audience of more than seven million college students to fix it. From 11/10 – 12/15, we're going to be accepting submissions from college students nationwide, and the band is going to hand-pick the animation that goes up on the green screen behind them. The winner will have their animation featured in the video the Decemberists exclusively premiere on mtvU/.com (and roll out to other outlets) and a new Apple iMac. Watch the green screen video of "O Valencia!"

Jive recording artist UGK returns in December after a long hiatus with their long awaited seventh album U.G.K. Underground Kingz. Group members Bun B and Pimp C return with a double album that features twenty new tracks, including the single "Stop-N-Go" (clean|explicit), produced by Jazzy Pha.

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