CMU Daily - on the inside Monday 18th October
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Marc Almond critically ill after motorbike crash
- Britney ordered to respond to diet pill lawsuit
- Usher dumps services of Mottola
- Doherty wants to make festive single with Barat
- Album Review: The Hacker - Reves Mecaniques
- Shrek stage show planned
- UK singles sales reach all time low
- Student radio chart
- DJ Poll party set
- Hollywood Records on the up
- Album Review: Cake - Pressure Chief
- Kylie to invite Jason on greatest hits tour
- Sharon favourite to win X Factor
- Geri drops the Halliwell

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BLATANT PLUGGING

*** PREVEW GREAT NEW MUSIC ONLINE: To preview tracks from CMU favourites Coldcut, Dub Pistols, The Freestylers, Deadly Avenger and Adam Freeland online at your leisure - check www.bigtime.tv/lmn

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SAME SIX QUESTIONS: Aaron from Delays (hurrah!)

How did you start out making music for a living?
I started out making music for myself. Luckily it got heard and here we are.

What inspired your latest album?
Ups, downs, smiles & frowns.

What process do you go through in creating an album?
It's like someone grabbing your brain and squeezing out every emotion.

Which artists influence your work?
Prince, Cocteau Twins, Daft Punk and The Beach Boys.

What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
Love it or hate it!

What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
I want everybody possible in the world to hear what we've done and then see previous answer.

Delays are currently touring the UK and Ireland with label mates HAL, dates as follows:

19 Oct: Brighton Concorde
21 Oct: Loughborough University
22 Oct: London Shepherds Bush Empire
23 Oct: Leeds Cockpit
24 Oct: Preston Mill
26 Oct: Warwick University
27 Oct: Bangor University
28 Oct: Nottingham Trent University
4 Nov: Derry, Nerve Centre
5 Nov: Belfast, Spring & Airbrake
6 Nov: Dublin, Temple Bar Music Centre
7 Nov: Cork, The Vault @ An Cruisin Lan
20 Nov: Keele University
23 Nov: Gloucester Arts Centre
24 Nov: Swansea University
25 Nov: Bournemouth

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MARC ALMOND CRITICALLY ILL AFTER MOTORBIKE CRASH
Soft Cell singer Marc Almond is critically ill in hospital after a motorcycle crash in central London. Almond was injured when a bike on which he was the 'pillion passenger' collided with a car near the capital's Cannon Street station yesterday.

A police spokesman confirmed the crash had taken place at 4pm, adding: "There was a serious collision between a car and a motorcycle at the junction of Cannon Street and New Change in the City of London. Both the motorcycle rider and the pillion passenger are in hospital. The rider has severe injuries and the pillion passenger is critical. City of London Police are investigating the collision. Marc Almond was the pillion passenger."

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BRITNEY ORDERED TO RESPOND TO DIET PILL LAWSUIT
A US judge has ordered Britney Spears to explain why she has not responded to a lawsuit filed by the manufacturer of a diet pill. Spears is obligated to give a response to legal action taken by Zoller Laboratories, DG Enterprises and Basic Research LLC, who make the Zantrex-3 diet pill.

They began legal action against Britney after Ms Spears' people threatened their own lawsuit against the pharmaceutical firm over the unendorsed use of Britney's image in advertising for the drug. The makers of Zantrex-3 used Britney in their ads after the singer was seen spilling a bottle of the pills at Heathrow Airport last year. Spears' people immediately issued legal proceedings over the ads, but the drugs firm reckoned they hadn't actually contravened any state or federal laws in making the adverts (because the ads merely referred to the fact that Britney had been seen with the pills) and they asked a judge to confirm that fact.

In judging on the matter the courts asked for a response from Britney, originally by 1 Sep. When no response was forthcoming a new deadline was set of 22 Oct. If still no response is made the Zantrex-3 people will win by default and will be at liberty to use Britney's image in their advertising.

Britney is, of course, currently without management, having decided to not renew her nine year management relationship with Larry Rudolph, possibly (and we stress 'possibly' here) over disagreements regarding Ms Spears' recent marriage to Kevin Federline.

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USHER DUMPS SERVICES OF MOTTOLA
Talking of artists dumping management, Usher's mother Jonnetta Patton, who has directed her son's career from the outset, has dropped the services of former Sony boss and current Casablanca Records chief Tommy Mottola, who has been assisting in the management of the R&B superstar's career for the last few months. Word is Patton and Mottola never really hit it off - though that didn't stop Usher being undoubtedly one of the world's most successful current artists - his album 'Confessions' has now shifted over 6 million copies in the US alone - a repackaged version featuring the hit Alicia Keys duet 'My Boo' has also sold an additional 344,000 copies.

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DOHERTY WANTS TO MAKE FESTIVE SINGLE WITH BARAT
Call us cynical, but Pete Doherty isn't what you might want to call a "reliable source". But, either way, Doherty has told Xfm he plans to record a Christmas single with fellow Libertine Carl Barat, despite being in exile from the band.

He told the station: "Oh yes, I'm going to collaborate with Carl Barat. No I'm not [joking]. I'm going to. Even if I have to kidnap him. We're going to do a Christmas record. We always said we'd do a Christmas record. What better way to highlight the goodwill and forgiveness of man, than with a reunion?"

That said, he admitted that he wasn't currently in communication with the rest of the Libertines: "You're joking aren't you? I haven't spoken to anyone since the day I went to Thailand. No, not at all. You know what I mean? I try but there's only so much I can take."

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ALBUM REVIEW: The Hacker - Reves Mecaniques (PIAS)
I've said it before and I'll say it again; most modern electronic music is a pale shadow of 80's electro. But there are notable exceptions such as the Faint, and the Hacker is another case in point. Perhaps what's so great about this record is that it's so imaginative and creative with a veritable smorgasbord of influences. There are tracks which are reminiscent of 80's artists but not necessarily the obvious ones. 'Flesh and Bone' has an old skool feel with monotone vocals and pounding rhythms, recalling cult act Fad Gadget while 'Traces' sounds like early Human League. 'Masterplan', with it's cool disinterested guest vocals by Miss Kittin, is equally influenced by Electroclash and Kraftwerk. Other tracks have a more original sound. 'Village of the Damned' is hugely dramatic, with ominous sounding synths and fast throbbing rhythms. 'Radiation' could be the soundtrack for a futuristic 'Alien' style movie; it's very atmospheric, with menacing riffs, textured rhythms and exciting, bizarre noises. Meanwhile, 'Electronic Snowflakes' as the titles suggests is full of delicate tinkling sounds and light, airy synths. The Hacker is Michel Amato who has already had success with his collaborations with Miss Kittin. He is French, as are most of the best contemporary electronica artists. This, his second album certainly deserves to be a hit, although thus far there seems to have been minimal media interest. Xfm at least should get on the case. It's one of the best electro albums I've heard for a long time, and certainly one of the most interesting albums of the year. JW
Release date: 18 Oct
Press contact: PIAS IH [all]

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SHREK STAGE SHOW PLANNED
If Disney can dominate the West End with stage adaptations of its musical movies, then why not Dreamworks? The Disney rival is planning a Broadway version of Shrek, to be coordinated by Sam Mendes and directed by Jason Moore, who was nominated for a Tony award this year for puppet musical Avenue Q

Confirming his involvement in the project, Moore told reporters last week: "There's a supreme challenge in bringing an animated world to the stage and making it theatrical. But what's so wonderful about Shrek is that anarchic attitude placed in a fairy-tale world that I think will thrive onstage".

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UK SINGLES SALES REACH ALL TIME LOW
Despite a recent slowdown in the overall decline in record sales in the US and UK, the British singles market reached an all time low yesterday when Eric Prydz returned to the top of the singles chart with the smallest weekly sales for a number one single ever.

Prydz's track 'Call On Me' sold just 23,519 copies to get to number one, the smallest chart topping sales figure since chart statistics were first compiled in 1969. The slump is particularly bad as it comes in a generally busy time of year for music sales - the previous lowest number one sales figure, when Daniel Bedingfield's 'Gotta Get Through This' sold just 25,354 in 2001, came in the traditionally slow week between Christmas and New Year. In contrast, the biggest selling UK number one single, Elton John's 'Candle In The Wind', sold 3.4million in a week in 1997.

The low figure won't bother Prydz's people too much - he returns to the top of the chart again having been shifted into second place last week by Robbie Williams. However it will be bad news for last week's new releases, especially for Virgin Records who will have been hoping for a better performance from the first solo single from Blue's Duncan James which went in at number two.

While we're on the chart - sales may have been low, but the number of new entries this week was very high (in fact, I suppose you could argue sales were cut across so many new entries, that that might explain the low sales figures at the top of the chart). Entering the singles chart this week were Rooster (7), Morrissey (8), Cliff Richard (9), Scissor Sisters (14), Kasabian (17) The Beautiful South (24), Good Charlotte (25) Rhian Benson (27), VS (29) Velvet Revolver (32) and 80s Matchbox B-Line Disaster (40).

Albums wise, and oh joy, Ronan Keating's best of album goes straight in at number one, but let's forget that shall we and assume that Duran Duran got the highest new entry with 'Astronaut' - they go straight in at three. Then let's forget that Celine Dion has the next highest new entry with 'Miracle' at 5, and pretend that accolade goes to Good Charlotte with 'The Chronicles Of Life And Death' at 8. Personally I have no problems with Daniel O'Donnell having a new entry at 9 with 'Welcome To My World'.

Other new entries in the albums chart this week for Lucie Silvas (11) and Jimmy Eat World (22).

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STUDENT RADIO CHART
Staying with charts just for a moment, and it gives us great pleasure to announce the first Student Radio Chart of the new academic year, compiled by our good friends at the Student Radio Association. Counts down like this:

1. Kasabian - Processed Beats (BMG/RCA)
2. Green Day - American Idiot (Warner/Reprise)
3. Muse - Butterflies and Hurricanes (Warner/Atlantic)
4. Kings Of Leon - The Bucket (BMG/Handmedown)
5. The Hives - Two Timing Touch and Broken Bones (Universal/Polydor)
6. Outkast - Prototype / Ghetto Music (BMG/Arista)
7. The Libertines - What Became of the Likely Lads (Rough Trade)
8. Kelis - Millionaire (Ft. Andre 3000) (EMI/Virgin)
9. The Zutons - Don't Ever Think (Too Much) (Sony/Deltasonic)
10. Robbie Williams - Radio (EMI)
11. Bowling For Soup - 1985 (BMG/Jive)
12. The Prodigy -Hotride (Beggars/XL)
13. Good Charlotte - Predictable (Sony/Epic)
14. The Futureheads - Meantime (679)
15. William Shatner - Common People (Sony/Epic)
16. Destiny's Child - Lose My Breath (Sony/Columbia)
17. Jimmy Eat World - Pain (Universal/Interscope)
18. Bloc Party - Helicopter (Wichita)
19. The Streets - Blinded By the Lights (679)
20. Lil'Flip - Sunshine (Sony/Columbia)
21. The Music - Freedom Fighters (EMI/Virgin)
22. 80s Matchbox B-Line Disaster - Rise of the Eagles (Universal/MCA)
23. Eastern Lane - I Said Pig On Friday (Rough Trade)
24. Sum 41 - We're All to Blame (Universal/Mercury)
25. The Ordinary Boys - Seaside (B-unique)
26. Estelle - Free (V2)
27. The Strokes - The End Has No End (Rough Trade)
28. Blues Explosion - Burn It Off (EMI/Mute)
29. Mansun - Slipping Away (EMI/Parlophone)
30. Duran Duran - (Reach Up For the) Sunrise (Sony/Epic)

College stations wanting to include their playlists in the Student Radio chart should submit their station charts to chart@studentradio.org.uk by Thursday at 4pm.

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DJ POLL PARTY SET
Voting has closed on DJ Mag's DJ Poll, and the results of the survey will be announced at the magazine's annual party at London's SEone club on 28 Oct. On the bill will be, among others, CMU favourites Touche, Mylo, Adam Freeland and the Stanton Warriors. Guest list info from jamie@thesundayclub.com (the whole thing is in aid of Unicef, so guest list places come for a charity donation).

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HOLLYWOOD RECORDS ON THE UP
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Disney's Buena Vista Music Group, which owns Hollywood Records and Lyric Street, is enjoying a boost having scored considerable recent chart success with the debuts from Rascal Flatts and Hilary Duff.

Rarely previously seen as a serious player - and generally bankrolled by Disney's music publishing operations (and, for some reason, the US rights to Queen's catalogue) - the Journal says the Group has just enjoyed one of its most financially successful years ever, and is keen to be seen as a proper label signing and developing new artists - with insiders pointing to Breaking Benjamin and Polyphonic Spree as a sign of that.

That said, it may be that Hollywood's real success is to come from transferring talent from television shows into the music sphere. Duff's music career was launched out of the Disney Channel show 'Lizzie McGuire', while insiders say the label's next big signing is Jesse McCartney, star of the WB show 'Summerland'.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Cake - Pressure Chief (Sony / Columbia)
When I was lucky enough to grab a chat with Cake's trumpet-blower Vince for an interview on Rare FM (UCL's student radio affair), he matter-of-factly stated that Cake are "dependable music providers". Which is telling - here is a band so understated and comfortable with what they do that they feel no need to take off into pastures unknown to keep audiences guessing and critics confused. That said, while previous Cake outings have had that earthy and very organic feel to them, in part due to a conscious rejection of synthesized sounds, with 'Pressure Chief' the band have dispelled the "no keyboards allowed" rule adding a few keyboards and electronic gadgets into the mix. However Cake have maintained their "dependable" style through quiet and unobtrusive electronic experiments (see track 5 'Carbon Monoxide') adding a new element with a characteristically understated yet totally spectacular result. Opener 'Wheels' displays a charming simplicity whilst 'The Guitar Man' and 'End of the Movie' set their country influences at centre stage. Clearly Cake are a band to trust; let yourself fall into McCrea's rolling vocals and be swept along by a gentle wave of intelligent and easily digested guitar pop. CMC
Release date: 18 October 2004
Press contact: Sony IH [all]

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KYLIE TO INVITE JASON ON GREATEST HITS TOUR
According to reports in the Daily Mirror, Kylie is planning on inviting Jason Donovan to support her on an up coming tour - which will be marvellous.

A source in the Kylie camp told the paper: "Kylie is going all out to make sure her greatest hits tour will be talked about for years. She knows that her duet with Jason - Especially For You - propelled her into the big time and she'd like to perform it with him again. Kylie feels it would be a great gesture to ask Jason to join her for some dates on her tour - they have a lot of history together."

Her Showgirl world tour kicks off in March.

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SHARON FAVOURITE TO WIN X FACTOR
Simon Cowell is now the outsider to win the battle of the artist managers on the X Factor show. With the number of artists now down to nine, bookies say Sharon Osbourne is favourite to win the contest.

Ladbrokes spokesman Warren Lush told reporters: "The odds suggest Sharon Osbourne is managing acts that are more likely to win the competition and she's undoubtedly in pole position. Early money suggests Simon's best hope is with Rowetta. Tabby Callaghan (3/1), Roberta Howett (4/1) and G4 (4/1) have all been well backed in recent hours. We have also been forced to cut the odds on Rowetta from 8/1 to 5/1after interest. The early bookies favourite is Tabby Callaghan, punters clearly think he's one to watch."

Having never seen the show I have no idea what he's talking about, and find it very hard to care, but consider yourself informed.

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GERI DROPS THE HALLIWELL
Just so you don't get confused - Geri Halliwell has said she plans to stop using her surname when she releases her next single. From now on she will be known simply as Geri, only with an star rather than a dot over the i. Consider your self, erm, informed.

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