CMU Daily - on the inside 21 Jun 2004
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- IMPALA angry at reported EC decision
- Libertine man back in the UK, back in trouble
- Bowie concert delayed by lollipop
- Album Review: The Futureheads - The Futureheads
- Stone roses top OMM album survey
- Christian Pop Idol in the pipeline
- Nordoff Robbins hold Silver Clefs
- New York Dolls plan Belfast gig
- Felix video online
- FLC play sherwood
- Four new members for AIM committee
- OFT to investigate ticket agencies
- Streets bootlegs track Euro 2004 performances
- Guardian to release EMI artists' Glasto sets
- Music greats celebrate the life of Ray Charles
- Liberty girl says I'm no homophobe
- C4 sign new deal with Sky
- Christina's VIP fans may lose out
- Album Review: The Very Best Of The Jacksons
- Last call for CADS exhibition submissions
- Macca promoters send the jets out to put off the rain
- T in the Park ensure three more fests to come
- Chart update
- Missy's UK tour off

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IMPALA ANGRY AT REPORTED EC DECISION
Following those rumours on Friday (did we start these rumours? No, I'm sure they came from somewhere official) that the European Union's anti-trust commissioner Mario Monti had given the proposed Sony BMG merger the go-ahead, an angry reaction from the independent community, who are disappointed the merger will seemingly get the green light despite the high levels of opposition aired during that open hearing in Brussels this week.

Pan-European trade body IMPALA issued lots of statements. For starters the trade organisation's President, PIAS Group's Michel Lambot, told reporters: "If the EC wants to understand why no-one turns out to vote in the European elections, it need look no further. Any turnaround would do nothing to counter the image that the EC's agenda is dictated by giant commercial interests rather than the interests of European citizens. It is Mr Monti's responsibility to correct this and we will use all options open to us to ensure that this happens. This decision, if taken, will even reinforce the view of people seeing Brussels as a mere technocracy."

The group say they cannot understand Monti's reported conclusion that there is not sufficient evidence to block the proposed merger. They draw on the EC's own report into the music sector which seemed to suggest that there were already serious competition issues in the current five major label set up - and that these issues would become more acute if another merger took place.

On that, IMPALA board member and Beggars Group chairman Martin Mills told reporters: "The Commission has said there are serious competition problems in the music market. We cannot understand why they do not want to address the market failures, which would inevitably be seriously aggravated by the merger. We will make sure the Commission reconsiders before it takes its final decision."

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LIBERTINE MAN BACK IN THE UK, BACK IN TROUBLE
Keep up, keep up. Not only is the Libertines' frontman Pete Doherty back in the UK after several hours of quality rehab in Thailand, but the singer has been pulled over while driving in London and been charged with possessing an offensive weapon - apparently a flick knife. Doherty is due in court later this month. Which means that not only might Doherty not be well enough to promote new single 'Can't Stand Me Now' when it is released on 9 Aug, he might not be out of prison enough.

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BOWIE CONCERT DELAYED BY LOLLIPOP
A David Bowie concert in Oslo was stopped after the singer was hit in the eye with a lollipop that was thrown on stage from the crowd. Reports say Bowie seemed to be in pain after the incident, and the show, twenty minutes in, was stopped while he recovered. One fan told reporters: "He grabbed a mike and called the person responsible a coward and bastard for hiding in the crowd. Everyone booed as the concert was stopped." A female fan later admitted to having thrown the lollipop, telling The Sun: "I was dancing, holding the sweet up. Then I was pushed and it flew from my hand."

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ALBUM REVIEW: The Futureheads - The Futureheads (679 Recordings)
Remember back in December when we predicted that this year would be earmarked as the beginning of Britpop Mk II? Well, let's be truthful, you thought it was a load of old tosh didn't you? It sure feels good to be right - and one of the more promising and quirky of the lot are Sunderland's The Futureheads. But what is it with British bands at the moment eh? We wait ages for that special something to arrive, and before you know it there's a whole pack of exhuberant, talented and enthusiastic lads (and gals) taking our dancefloors and setting them alight with raw passion. Very much part of that pack are this quartet from foggy and grey Wearside - a jerky XTC-esque bunch with four-part vocal harmonies and mackem accents. Wow, all that, and with tunes to boot an' all. Produced mainly by Paul Epworth, it's easy to understand why the Futureheads have taken quite the (albeit poppier) eclectic edge musically. Opener 'Le Garage' is a dizzy and confusing less-than-two-minute blizzard. Crazy enough without the line 'BULLSHIT, BULLSHIT, BULLSHIT!' screamed into our ears. Nuff said. 'Robot' is in familiar territory to the first track - it being a bit of short and snappy infused post-punk rock. Almost choir-like vocals on the line "I have no mind..." make not so much tantalising listening, as more so compulsory. Released in October as a download-only single, 'A To B' slows proceedings (barely), but the wackiness is still very much alive, whereas the forthcoming one 'Decent Days And Nights' is a little more sensible with lyrical and musical logic. 'Alms' is a particular highlight, as an influence by the likes of the unlikely, Boomtown Rats and XTC join up in rather spooky circumstances, "Don't ask me for alms/don't ask me for a-a-alms". The re-recorded 'First Day' truly is done justice, as it needed the touch-up with plentiful background clapping and a little more spit-shine production wise. 'Stupid And Shallow' is gonna be a popular one with the pop-pickers, and altogether now: "You eat shit cos you're stupid and shallow/but I like it when you're stupid and shallow", before finally reaching a climax with the monstrous 'Manray' by which lead singer Barry at the very end screams as it's all gone too insane, "SHUT UP!". One of 2004's best British albums, by quite frankly turning something ugly and grey looking, into something beautiful. Must be to do with the weather. YN
Release date: 12 Jul
Press contact: Cool Delta [CR,CP] Warner IH [RP, RR, NP, NR]

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STONE ROSES TOP OMM ALBUM SURVEY
Another day, another 'best albums in the world ever' survey (the best album in the world ever, for future reference, is Ben Folds Five's 'The Unauthorised Biography Of Reinhold Messner'), and this time the Stone Roses' 1989 eponymous debut tops the chart.

Based on the opinions of 100 musicians and critics the Observer Music Monthly survey put The Beatles' 'Revolver' at two, The Clash's 'London Calling' at three and, perhaps most surprisingly, Van Morrison's 'Astral Weeks' at four. Neither Radiohead's 'OK Computer' - which used to top lots of these surveys - nor Oasis' 'Definitely Maybe' which topped Q's recent best album chart, appear in the top ten.

Commenting on his survey OMM editor Caspar Llewellyn Smith said: "This is the sort of poll you might conduct over Sunday lunch with friends; which are the greatest British albums of all time. Once you start to draw up your own list, the questions begin: should I pick my favourites, or albums which conform to an idea of greatness".

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CHRISTIAN POP IDOL IN THE PIPELINE
Assuming the antics in the Big Brother house last week didn't go down too well among the top guard up there in heaven, then good news for the Almighty - a TV network in America is planning a Christian version of Pop Idol.

US management company Wright Entertainment and religious broadcaster Trinity will hold 11 auditions across American next month. Budding singers aged between 18 and 24 are invited to enter, on the condition they perform a gospel or contemporary spiritual song. Winners from each audition will then fly into Hollywood for a grand final.

A spokesman for the show - Philip McIntyre - explained: "It is our goal to wrap God's message - His love - in acceptance, in a way that blends seamlessly into pop culture."

Rumours that Lucifer will be taking Simon Cowell's role on the show are yet to be confirmed (OK, obvious gag, we apologise).

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NORDOFF ROBBINS HOLD SILVER CLEFS
The Nordoff Robbins charity held its Silver Clef Awards this weekend. Among the winners were Morrissey, who was honoured for "his amazing contribution to music and for being an inspiration to others", Jamie Cullum who won the best new music gong and George Benson who won the best international title.
Collecting his award from the New York Dolls - who reformed to play a gig at his Meltdown Festival last week - Morrissey said "God bless everybody".

Handing the best newcomer award to Jamie Cullum, Paul Gambaccini remarked: "I've been involved in the industry for about two decades and I've seen the ugly and the beautiful side. This is the beautiful side. It's about people getting involved in music, not because they want to be on Parkinson or on magazine covers, but for this stuff and because they like it."

As well as the back slapping a charity auction was held in aid of the Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy Centre with artwork from David Bowie's Reality album and a guitar signed by Justin Hawkins up for the bidding.

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NEW YORK DOLLS PLAN BELFAST GIG
Talking of the New York Dolls - having reformed to play a gig at Morrissey's Meltdown Festival, the band will now support The White Stripes at a gig at Belfast's Botanic Gardens on 25 Aug.

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FELIX VIDEO ONLINE
The first single from Felix Da Housecat new album 'Devin Dazzle And The Neon Fever' is out on 26 Jul on Ryko/Emperor Norton. The single release comes with remixes from Soulwax, Freeform 5 and Felix himself.
The video for the track is online at the following addresses:

Quicktime Broadband:
http://rykodisc.com/video/Felix/qt_rocket_bb.html

Quicktime Dial Up:
http://rykodisc.com/video/Felix/qt_rocket_56.html

Real Player:
http://rykodisc.com/video/Felix/felix_rocket.ram

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FLC PLAY SHERWOOD
The Fun Lovin Criminals play what sounds like a very special gig at the Sherwood Pines Forest Park near Nottingham on Friday - with some profits from the gig going to woodland conservation projects, which has to be a good thing. Our friends over at http://www.radio2xs.com have tickets to give away - closing date for entry is tonight so check out their site now!

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FOUR NEW MEMBERS FOR AIM COMMITTEE
News now for committee fans. Four new members will join the board of the Association of Independent Music at the organisation's AGM on Tue. Cooking Vinyl chairman Martin Goldschmidt, Recordstore.co.uk boss Russel Coultart, Beggars boss Martin Mills and Feargal Sharkey all join the board. They replace Telstar's Sean O'Brien and Amato's Tony Duckworth who have resigned their posts, and Songlines' Doug D'Arcy and Ninja Tune's Peter Quicke who are due to retire from the committee.

AIM chief exec Alison Wenham will update members on the work of the association at the AGM, after which Mick Hucknall will witter on about how evil Warner Music are. Takes place at the University of Westminster at 3pm, with beer and chips at 6pm.

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OFT TO INVESTIGATE TICKET AGENCIES
The Office of Fair Trading is planning to investigate the ticket agency sector to check if the sale of tickets to entertainment events is all done fair and square. Booking fees and the processing of refunds for cancelled events - plus the existence or not of exclusivity deals between event promoters and ticket agents - are likely to occupy much of the investigation.

Although responding to some customer complaints - especially regarding booking fees - the investigation may decide the sector delivers a good deal to consumers. Or it may feel it can take action against key players under the Competition Act 1998 or EC law, or call for new legislation if they discover any loopholes.

A spokesman for the OFT explained: "This is a proactive market study into the issue of ticket agents. It's not a full investigation, which could take up to a year, but we're going to be sitting down with all sides to see if the market is working for consumers."

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STREETS BOOTLEGS TRACK EURO 2004 PERFORMANCES
Two The Streets bootlegs are doing the rounds relating to England's performance in Euro 2004.
The first is set to the tune of The Streets next single, 'Dry Your Eyes', and features David Beckham and Roy Keane sound-a-likes discussing the disastrous England France game (it's called 'Dry Your Eyes Becks').

The second harks from Ireland and has two Irish reporters discussing Engerland's chances over a Streets backing, concluding that the England Team is "Shit, But You Don't Know It".

If we find either track online we'll let you know the links.

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GUARDIAN TO RELEASE EMI ARTISTS' GLASTO SETS
EMI will make recordings of its artists' performances at Glastonbury next weekend available to download via the Guardian's website. Fans will be able to visit http://www.guardian.co.uk/glastonburydownload and access classic tracks plus recordings to be made this weekend of the likes of The Bees, Starsailor, Air and the Chemical Brothers.

Commenting on the download service Guardian Unlimited's head of commercial development Adam Freeman told reporters: "This is a media first for GML. EMI has a fantastic range of artists and is constantly looking for creative ways to share its music. This collaboration will bring great music to the massive audience of Guardian Unlimited music fans in an innovative, cost-effective way."

Whether the service will feature EMI's biggest star at Glasto this year - Mr Paul McCartney - remains to be seen.

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MUSIC GREATS CELEBRATE THE LIFE OF RAY CHARLES
The great and the good of the music world were in LA on Friday to pay tribute to Ray Charles. Stevie Wonder, Willie Nelson, BB King, Little Richard, Motown Records founder Berry Gordy Jr and civil rights leader Jessie Jackson were among those in attendance at the two hour service.

Jackson commented: "Heaven wanted some music and God sent for Ray Charles ... Ray, we can't stop loving you - we choose not to - and we'll see you in the morning."

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LIBERTY GIRL SAYS I'M NO HOMOPHOBE
Liberty X's Michelle Heaton has denied making homophobic remarks after her band were kicked off the bill for next month's Gay Pride gig in London.

The band were axed because of opposition in the gay community to a column written by Heaton for HOT magazine about the recent gay storyline in Coronation Street. Heaton seemed to say that she thought the gay kiss included in the soap should have been shown after the 9pm watershed - implying, of course, such a scene is far too shocking to be screened in prime time.

Talking to the Sun about being axed from the Pride bill because of her column, Heaton said last week: "I am really upset by the reaction. I have loads of gay friends and am in no way homophobic. I was taken out of context and can't believe how it has all backfired. What I meant to say was that homosexuality shouldn't be exploited or sensationalised. We play at loads of gay charities and have a huge gay fan base. Anyone who knows me knows that I am in no way homophobic. This is a stupid thing that has spiralled out of control and I'm really sorry if any offence has been caused."

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C4 SIGN NEW DEAL WITH SKY
Channel 4 have extended their current deal with Sky until the end of 2008, which means the Sky network will continue to carry C4's digital channels E4 and FilmFour. The deal also means Sky will air new channel More 4 when it launches in early 2005. Good news for anyone who likes constant Big Brother and Friends repeats - not so for OC fans which is still off the air until the Autumn: damn you Channel 4.
Confirming the deal, BSkyB's Richard Freudenstein told reporters: "We are pleased to continue our mutually beneficial relationship with Channel 4 and look forward to the launch of the new channel More4 alongside its existing digital TV services E4 and FilmFour."

Rob Woodward of Channel 4 added: "This is a significant deal for Channel 4 and reflects the success of our digital channels E4 and FilmFour. Their availability across the Sky platform has been a key factor in the success of our digital strategy and we believe that continuing to deliver them to Sky's growing customer base is the best way of ensuring their continued growth."

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CHRISTINA'S VIP FANS MAY LOSE OUT
Problems for the Christina Aguilera camp this morning after it was confirmed that the company that runs her fan club are not able to refund ticket monies to those fans who bought VIP tickets for the singer's cancelled tour through their service.

The VIP tickets, which sold for several hundred dollars, included guaranteed front row seats, backstage access and the chance to meet the singer. When Aguilera's tour was cancelled earlier this year all ticket holders were told to get a refund from point of purchase, except VIP tickets holders who would have their monies refunded to their credit card by 31 May.

Three weeks on, and with no refunds paid, it has been revealed that the company that run Aguilera's fanclub - FansRULE - have gone bankrupt after filing for Chapter 11 protection last November. In a statement the company told fans: "FansRULE regrets that the refunds for the cancelled Christina Aguilera 2004 tour cannot be paid at this time. What should be made clear is that the inability to refund payments made for tickets is in no way the fault of Christina Aguilera. We understand that this puts a great many of you in a difficult situation, and are hopeful for a speedy resolution to this problem."

Keen to reaffirm that the singer had little involvement in FansRULE - which also runs fan clubs for Destiny's Child, Jewel and Aerosmith - Aguilera's management also made a statement to fans this weekend: "We are writing to let you know how sorry Christina feels that you have not received your refunds. Our expectation was that the refunds would be made by May 31. We have been actively and aggressively pursuing FansRULE to cause them to refund the money, but, as of this date, our efforts have been unsuccessful."

Both FansRULE and Aguilera's management stress they will endeavour to ensure refunds are made asap. The latter, in the meantime, is suggesting where possible fans see if they can secure refunds via their credit card companies.

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ALBUM REVIEW: The Very Best Of The Jacksons
A cheer went up in the office when 'The Very Best of The Jacksons' arrived. Well, I say a cheer went up in the office, truth be told it was mainly confined to the area around my desk. But certainly a cheer went up in my heart, because God knows, I love the Jacksons. Or do I? Well, as CMU's resident disco lover tracks like 'ABC' and 'I Want You Back' are guaranteed to make me happy - on a good day making me bob around in my desk chair like Christina Aguilera in that stupid ad. And I'd kind of forgotten in my rush to whoop in anticipation like a guest on the Jerry Springer Show that the Jacksons are also responsible for such classics as 'One Day In Your Life' and the ever-now-for-me-associated-with-Esther-Rantzen 'Ben' - tracks which are very good but which, coming after the aforementioned disco greats, just weren't quite boppy enough. And then there was the second CD in this double CD. This one left me a little non-plussed. It started off with stuff like 'Can You Feel It' and 'Blame It On The Boogie' (hurrah!!) but then segued into several tracks that I never realised were Jacksons tracks and some more I'd never heard of ... and which I didn't particularly like. In conclusion then: it's good, it's classic, and I'm really glad to hear it, especially just in time for Summer (prime Jackson's boogie listening time if you ask me). But I could probably have done without that second CD. CM
Release date: 28 Jun
Press contact: PPR [all]

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LAST CALL FOR CADS EXHIBITION SUBMISSIONS
If, like us, you're often more impressed with the album artwork that arrives in the post than the music that's on the CD, then this one is for you. Following on from Music Week's annual awards event for those that work in the visual side of the music industry (artwork, videos etc) - the CADS - news this week that the team who organised that event are now planning an exhibition of the best artwork produced in the last twelve months to be shown at the ICA in London in mid-Sep. Labels interested in putting their artwork forward for consideration to be exhibited at the event must fill in and send in the CADS submission form by the end of the week. For more details of how to enter contact cads@musicweek.com. More on the exhibition closer to the time.

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MACCA PROMOTERS SEND THE JETS OUT TO PUT OFF THE RAIN
Keen that his 3000th gig should not be rained off, organiser's of Paul McCartney's open air concert in St Petersburg this weekend apparently shelled out £20,000 in order to send three jets to spray the clouds above the city with dry ice, a technique which apparently reduces the chance of rain. A source close to the McCartney camp told the press: "He thought it was a fantastic idea. The dry ice helps hold the water within the clouds." Whether a similar technique will be used to ensure Macca's Glastonbury set this weekend is mud free remains to be seen - doubtful though.

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T IN THE PARK ENSURE THREE MORE FESTS TO COME
Organiser's of T in the Park can be sure there will be T events in both 2005 and 2006 after securing a three year licence from the local council to stage the event at the Balado site in Kinross.

Announcing the three year licence Geoff Ellis of T in the Park promoters DF Concerts told reporters: "I am absolutely delighted that we have been welcomed back to Balado and that we can once again stage one of the world's top music festivals in what feels like its natural home."

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CHART UPDATE
Thanks in the main to a quick mention here in the CMU Daily (well, specialist radio play, some very fine live shows and a dedicated fan base may have come into play too), the Freestylers' very fine 'Push Up' entered the chart at number 22 last night, three places ahead of N*E*R*D - hurrah for that. Now, let's all start bigging up the Loose Cannons whose single is out next Monday and get that top twenty.

The top five in the singles chart this week is pretty much as last week, except for Britney's latest single going in at one and pushing everything else down one place. Other new entries worthy of your time: Razorlight - Golden Touch at 9, Paul Weller - The Bottle at 13, Slipknot - Duality at 15 and the aforementioned N*E*R*D - Maybe at 25.

Albums wise and, despite the hype and the damn fine tracks, the Beastie Boys failed to knock the ever (and somewhat strangely) popular Keane off the top spot. 'To The 5 Boroughs' goes in at 2. Other than that the new entries are all best ofs (Donna Summer and Dire Straits) and a Celine Dione live album.

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MISSY'S UK TOUR OFF
Missy Elliott's UK tour - Hip Hop Don't Stop - has, erm, stopped. Missy's UK dates have been cancelled because of a hold up on getting sets and equipment over here and, according to the NME, because tour organisers couldn't get their hands on enough buses to ship Missy's entourage around!

A statement from the tour's organisers says: "Missy Elliott is disappointed that she will not able to perform in these cities and looks forward to coming back and performing for her fans in the future."

Strangely, given the official reason for the tour's cancellation, the Amsterdam and Paris dates on 26 and 27 Jun respectively will go ahead.

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