CMU Daily - on the inside Monday 18th April

yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- “It’s all in your head woman”: Jacko trial update
- Eminem bully defamation claims dismissed
- OutKast reach settlement with Rosa Parks
- Andre concentrates on film career
- Single review: Daft Punk – Robot Rock
- DMX arrested for driving without licence
- UK charts revamped despite indie sector concerns
- Cat Stevens signs publishing deal with EMI
- Nine Black Alps finish album
- Theakston promises intelligent breakfast show
- Album review: Mary Lorson And Saint Low - Realistic
- Radiohead top albums poll
- Thom Yorke protests for Trade Justice
- Bloc Party hope for godlike future
- Reznor offers fans chance to make him a woman
- Fountains Of Wayne rarities release
- Single review: The Infadels - Give Yourself To Me
- This week’s Student Radio Chart
- Elton tells Brian he’s sorry
- Liberty X girl fears drink spiked
- Mariah to appear as extra?
- Carol Decker wins the day

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CMU PRESS ROOM>>

CARLING LIVE 24
Carling, the beer behind some of Britain's biggest and best live music events, is presenting another 24 hour music marathon. Following the success of 2004's Carling Live 24 event in London, this year Carling will be bringing an all day all night line up of great live music to both London and Manchester, the former on 30th April, the latter on 28th may. 26 bands and 13 venues will take part in the event, with Embrace, The Zutons, Ian Brown, Babyshambles, The Chemical Brothers, Doves and Kaiser Chiefs among the artists on the bill. For full press information check the CMU Press Room - where more media information will appear as it is available:

http://www.cmumusicnetwork.co.uk/pressroom/carling24

Advertise your releases and events to CMU Daily's 6500+ readership - classified ad and online press release package just £50 a year. Email sales@cmumusicnetwork.co.uk for details, or check:

http://www.cmumusicnetwork.co.uk/pressroom/info.pdf

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DAMN COMPUTERS
Well, you might have noticed today’s Daily is a little later today than has become the norm. But, while it may be late arriving, its journey to your computer was particularly action packed, including, as it did, JCBs digging, broken ADSL lines, a severe lack of internet connections, mad panics to find external hard drives to get files from an iMac with no floppy drive (what’s that about?) over to a PC, a mad dash across town to a different office and the firing up of a reserve mailout server. Ah well, fingers crossed no such technical traumas tomorrow – though we have the carrier pigeons on call as a contingency.

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“IT’S ALL IN YOUR HEAD WOMAN”: JACKO TRIAL UPDATE
It was a very busy day in the pop courts on Friday, and we start, of course, in Santa Maria, California where Michael Jackson’s lawyer Thomas Mesereau was let loose on Janet Arvizo, the mother of Jacko’s current accuser, and the person who Mesereau says has instigated the whole shenanigans in a bid to make some cash. And boy did things kick off.

Mesereau began the proceedings by telling Janet that the allegations that his client abused her son were all "in her mind". Arvizo responded by appealing directly to the jury, telling them that what Mesereau said was untrue, prompting Judge Rodney Melville to admonish both lawyer and witness. It wasn’t the only time Arvizo made pleas directly to the jury, and it wasn’t the only time Melville told her off for doing so. At one point, while being questioned about her time at Neverland, she claimed: "Neverland is all about pornography, booze and sex with boys”, a comment Melville instructed jurors to ignore.

Much of Arvizo’s testimony when questioned by the prosecution centred on the allegations she and her son were held hostage by Jackson and his people in the weeks that followed the screening of the Martin Bashir documentary on Jacko – so Mesereau began by tackling those claims. He claims that Arvizo had numerous opportunities to leave Jackson’s ranch but claims that she chose not to. "How many times, in your mind, did you escape from that dungeon, Neverland?" Janet Arvizo admitted she left Neverland on three occasions during the time she claims she was held hostage there, but says each time she was enticed back by Mr Jackson's aides.

Mesereau also began his key task of the trial, portraying Arvizo as a serial plaintiff who uses wild allegations to force cash out of cautious defendants. That claim depends on a $152,000 settlement the Arvizo family won against the JC Penney retail chain following what Jacko’s defence team would say were dubious sexual harassment claims against one of the store’s security guards. Faced with the allegation that her motive for pursuing the case against Jacko was money, Mrs Arvizo exclaimed: "We will never file a claim against Mr Jackson - I want justice here”.

More fireworks are expected in the court room as the trial continues today. Elsewhere in Jacko news, a spokesman for the singer denied those reports that Jackson is on the verge of being forced to sell his 50% stake in the Sony ATV Music publishing company in order to keep his finances in order. Jackson spokeswoman Raymone Bain told reporters: “There have been numerous reports regarding the sale, or portions thereof, of Michael Jackson’s music catalog. These reports are not true”. So that’s that sorted.

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EMINEM BULLY DEFAMATION CLAIMS DISMISSED
Meanwhile, over in the Michigan branch of the courts of pop, three appeal court judges dismissed a lawsuit accusing Eminem of defamation.

As previously reported, DeAngelo Bailey went to school with Marshall Mathers and admitted to bullying the young Slim Shady. However he objected to a 1999 released Eminem rap called ‘Brain Damage’ which name checked Bailey and accused him of being violent towards the teenage Mathers. The rap went: “Way before my baby daughter Hailey, I was harassed daily by this fat kid named DeAngelo Bailey. He banged my head against the urinal till he broke my nose, soaked my clothes in blood, grabbed me and choked my throat”. Bailey claimed that the violent acts described in the rap never took place, and that by accusing him of such acts Eminem had defamed his character.

However when the case got to court in 2003 the judge ruled against Bailey on the grounds that the lyrics of the rap would not be taken seriously. At the time the judge hearing the case summed up with a rap of her own: "The lyrics are stories no-one would take as fact/They're an exaggeration of a childish act”. Bailey appealed that decision, but the three judge appeals court panel last week upheld the original judgement, ruling that the lyrics would not be taken literally by a "reasonable listener". Bailey’s lawyer said he was not surprised by the decision and that his client would not appeal.

Eminem’s lawyer, Mary Massaron Ross, told reporters: "The fact that there may have been differences in the precise facts didn't matter because the gist of the story was true by Bailey's own admission”.

I’m not convinced that the “differences in the precise facts” are as irrelevant as Ross seems to claim, nor that the court was right in saying no one would take Eminem’s lyrics literally. Though I suppose the whole thing is a good lesson for school bullies everywhere – the geeky kid you’re bullying might grow up to be a global-superstar rapper who will diss you bigtime, and then you’ll be sorry.

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OUTKAST REACH SETTLEMENT WITH ROSA PARKS
More legal things, and OutKast have settled a long running legal dispute with the legendary US civil rights activist Rosa Parks. 92 year old Parks objected to the use of her name for the title of a track on the hip hop duo’s 1998 ‘Aquemini’ album. Parks’ lawyers alleged that OutKast were guilty of defamation and trademark infringement against their client because they did not ask permission to use her name.

The initial legal challenge was dismissed under the US’s first amendment, but in 2004 Parks’ lawyers launched a new legal action, this time against OutKast’s record label BMG, now SonyBMG. That lawsuit has now been settled. Neither OutKast nor SonyBMG will admit to wrong doing in this case, because of their First Amendment rights, but as a goodwill gesture have agreed to fund a programme to help educate young Americans of Parks’ work.

As part of that programme OutKast and other artists will record a tribute CD to Parks, who became an icon of the 1950s civil rights movement when she was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a bus to a white man – the event led to the 381-day bus boycott organised by Martin Luther King. A TV programme will also be made about the Parks legacy, which will be distributed to schools on DVD.

Sony BMG's lawyer Joe Beck welcomed the settlement: "We think it will go a long way towards teaching a new generation about Rosa Parks and her accomplishments. We appreciate Ms Parks' and her lawyers' acknowledgment of the First Amendment in protecting artistic freedom.”

Some relatives of Parks have criticised her lawyers and carers who claim that the civil rights campaigner, who has suffered from dementia since at least 2002, would not have pursued legal action against OutKast had she been in good health – with some saying she was probably unaware of the legal action.

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ANDRE CONCENTRATES ON FILM CAREER
Elsewhere in Outkast news, Andre 3000 has announced that he is quitting music to concentrate on an acting career, at least for the time being, anyway. The hip-hop star told reporters: "I've been doing music for 10 years now, and after a while you kind of get dead on it and look for more inspiration." The remarks were made whilst in Toronto recently, where he was working on a new film, ‘Four Brothers’ with Mark Wahlberg and directeor John Singleton (he of ‘Boyz N The Hood’ fame).

On the challenges of acting Andre said: "Film's a hard transition. Rappers spend their whole career trying to build up an image that is sometimes hard to get away from. In acting, you have to be able to reach out to all emotions - you have to sometimes look silly and most entertainers spend their careers trying to get away from that." Fellow cast members have been praising the OutKast star’s humility and humanity, and Mark Wahlberg commented: "What has surprised me the most is his level of commitment. He comes from a world of chaos and pandemonium being in the music world ... but he's as focused as I was when I first got into acting.”

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SINGLE REVIEW: Daft Punk – Robot Rock (EMI/Virgin)
The first single to be taken from the elusive Frenchmen's third studio LP, Human After All, 'Robot Rock' symbolises all that we know and love about Thomas Bangalter & Guy Manuel De Homem Christo, the unconventional electronic duo, more universally known as Daft Punk. Characteristic killer chords of looped guitar, magnificently electrified in ways known only to them and Zeus, thunder from start to finish beneath another unforgettable, noodley synthesised riff. It seems that only Daft Punk can ever pull this style off effectively - two bars of fantastic noise, looped continuously for four minutes, with a retro, vocodered vox pitched in as always. Bangalter's other projects (such as 'Together') also stay true to this surprisingly successful, yet seemingly simple concept, and it seems, to the sheer delight of their widespread audience and hungry advertising execs alike. Soulwax add their own potent, unique interpretation – further distorting that monster loop into an angry bass-brute, before reshuffling it into a bizarre repeat of slowing down and speeding up - undoubtedly one for a wild dance floor moment, but certainly not for everyday use. By and large, it's another hit-bound single for Daft Punk, but I'm never sure how much longevity these idiosyncratic tracks really have, especially when they are total sound bed fodder. OG
Release date: 11 Apr
Press contact: EMI IH [CP, CR, RR, NR] APB [RP, NP]

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DMX ARRESTED FOR DRIVING WITHOUT LICENCE
Back to the pop courts, just for a minute, and rapper DMX has been arrested on “suspicion of driving with a suspended licence” after a minor crash on Friday – though there seems little doubt that he was driving the car in question, nor that his licence is currently suspended, so why only “on suspicion” we’re not sure.

Anyway, it was a stroke of bad fortune that when DMX accidentally drove his car into the one in front of him while driving through New York on Friday he just so happened to shunt it into a police car, which is never wise, especially if your driver’s licence is in fact suspended.

The rapper was released after being charged. This incident is the latest in a number of DMX driving offences - he was arrested four months ago on three driving related charges, including speeding. That arrest came just a week after he pleaded guilty to driving under the influence of drugs last summer. Oh yes, and in 2001 he served a 15 day jail sentence for driving without a licence. Oh dear.

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UK CHARTS REVAMPED DESPITE INDIE SECTOR CONCERNS
Despite concerns by key players in the independent sector, the main British music chart yesterday combined data from both physical CD and download sales for the first time. The addition of sales figures for tracks sold via the legal download platforms did help certain artists improve their overall performance, although it did not alter the top two positions – Tony Christie featuring Peter Kay remained at number one for the fifth week, while the highest new entry, Razorlight's ‘Somewhere Else’, was in second place in the retail-only chart as well as the combined chart.

The latest Elvis Presley re-release, ‘The Wonder of You’, was affected by the revamp however. It was at third place in the retail-only chart, but slipped down to number four once you added download sales. In the combined chart Ciara featuring Missy Elliott with ‘1 2 Step’ was at number three.

Other artists who benefited from the chart revamp were Stereophonics and Basement Jaxx, who were, respectively, 8 and 18 positions higher in the combined chart than in the retail-countdown. Damon Albarn’s Gorillaz were a massive 175 places higher in the combined chart than the retail-only chart, though that was thanks mainly to some clever marketing – their latest track ‘Feel Good Inc’ had a very limited physical release, meaning the vast majority of their fans downloaded the track.

Some artists, of course, lost out through the revamp. Kings of Leon, Cabin Crew and Shapeshifters would all have been in this week’s UK Top 40 but for the addition of download sales data.

The independent sector is yet to comment on the new combined singles chart. Last week they called for the revamp to be postponed over concerns that not enough independent labels had yet got their music stocked on the iTunes platform – by far the biggest player in the UK digital music space.

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CAT STEVENS SIGNS PUBLISHING DEAL WITH EMI
Publishing news, oh yes, and Yusuf Islam who, I seem to recall, once recorded as Cat Stevens, has signed a new publishing deal with EMI.

Waxing lyrical about the deal, which covers his whole 200 song catalogue, Yusuf Islam told reporters: “I sincerely feel there is a spirit within EMI which understands the potential of my words and music, especially exploring some of my lesser known songs, and is really willing to work them. For me, the writer, it is an invigorating experience knowing that these songs can be rediscovered by different artists and audiences, to live on in new ways and hopefully touch people’s lives again.”

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NINE BLACK ALPS FINISH ALBUM
Nine Black Alps have finished recording their debut album and the buzz band’s singer Sam Forrest has told NME.com about the difficulties of bringing it together: “The sessions were quite stressful actually. It went on quite long, it took three and a half months which seemed a long time to us, but maybe that’s normal. It’s a bit of a weird process, you can listen to a song too many times I think while you’re doing it.”

Nine Black Alps, by the way, are one of the bands playing the The NME New Music Tour alongside Maximo Park, The Cribs, The Rakes, Towers Of London, Battle and The Checks. The dates for those live shows are:

18 May: Norwich Waterfront - Maximo Park, The Cribs, The Checks
19 May: Portsmouth Wedgewood - Maximo Park, Nine Black Alps, The Checks
20 May: Gloucester Guildhall - Nine Black Alps, Maximo Park, The Checks
21 May: Hull Silhouettes - Maximo Park, The Cribs, Towers Of London
22 May: Leeds Cockpit - The Cribs, Nine Black Alps, The Checks
23 May: Northampton Roadmenders - Maximo Park, Nine Black Alps, The Rakes
24 May: Bristol Fleece - Nine Black Alps, The Rakes, The Vega Method
24 May: London Garage - Towers OF London, The Checks
25 May: Brighton Concorde - The Rakes, Nine Black Alps, The Checks
28 May: Nottingham Rock City - Towers OF London, The Cribs, Battle
30 May: Manchester Roadhouse - Towers OF London, The Cribs, Battle
31 May: Birmingham Academy 2 - The Cribs, Towers Of London, Battle

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THEAKSTON PROMISES INTELLIGENT BREAKFAST SHOW
Jamie Theakston has been bigging up his new Heart 106.2 breakfast show, and he is promising London listeners a more intelligent and engaging show than that provided by his main competitors – in particular Radio 1’s Chris Moyles, Kiss’s Bam Bam, Virgin Radio’s Pete and Geoff and Capital FM’s Johnny Vaughan. Whether the Heart 106.2 listeners, who have been waking up to the intelligent and engaging sounds of Jono Coleman for the last few years, are ready for the revamped breakfast show remains to be seen, though bosses at the station will be hoping so – after several years of being the “station on the up” in the capital they now find themselves positioned as the “struggling ones”.

Theakston: "There are a lot of white middle-class men in their late 20s and 30s doing a similar brand of presenting. If you put Pete and Geoff, Johnny Vaughan, Bam-Bam and Chris Moyles in the same room it would get quite noisy, with people talking at each other and nobody listening. Our show will be very different - the audience will be at the front, they are the most important element of the show, not the presenter. If you listen to some of the other shows they seem far more interested in themselves than the audience. That schtick is quite tired, it's a spin-off from the Loaded [magazine] era and I don't know whether people find that way of interacting that interesting any more. We've got a great opportunity to take advantage of a gaping and obvious hole in the market." Can’t wait.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Mary Lorson and Saint Low - Realistic (Cooking Vinyl)
The fourth solo album by the former lead singer with Madder Rose is a somewhat poignant release, after her diagnosis and successful treatment for breast cancer in 2003. Although only one track deals directly with her illness (‘Born Knowing’), most of the material from this record was composed after her diagnosis. Whereas you may think that some artists might dwell on their misfortune, and enter a world of self-pity, Lorson refuses to see herself as a victim. In fact, ‘Realistic’ is an incredibly positive album, dealing with more optimistic themes and experiences, such as the birth of her son. Whereas Madder Rose were a notable indie-rock band, Lorson’s solo material has far more in common with the likes of Laura Nyro, another neglected female singer-songwriter. Most crossover jazz-pop suffers from an unfair reputation, because the more prominent exponents of the genre, such as Norah Jones, tend to slide into dangerously mediocre territory. Lorson is in a different league however; she’s a talented songwriter, very lyrical and confessional, and unafraid to write emotive and touching songs. One such example in ‘Lonely Boy’, an affecting tribute to the late singer-songwriter Elliot Smith, of whom Lorson was a huge fan. It’s a more than worthy compliment. Lorson even turns to political matters; ’Serenade’ is her populist song, casting an eye on contemporary America, though it remains inspiring, rather than angry or contemptuous. ‘These Days’ is a song for her son, and reflects the small joys life provides. ’Realistic’ is a surprising record, finding joy and affirmation in the most trying circumstances. In an ideal world, Lorson would be selling the amounts of records the likes of lesser artists like Katie Melua does, but I’m sure she’s more than happy with the direction of her career. Long may she continue making records of this quality. KW
Release date: 18 Apr
Press contact: Cooking Vinyl IH [all]

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RADIOHEAD TOP ALBUMS POLL
Well, these polls always tell us more about the voters than anything else and, perhaps more importantly, about which music fans are most loyal when it comes to online voting. So well done to the Radiohead faithful who succeeded in voting ‘OK Computer’ to the top of Channel 4’s best album poll, which aired last night. Now we love Radiohead here at CMU, but were not convinced ‘OK Computer’ can really be said to be a better album than, say, ‘The White Album’ and ‘Revolver’ and ‘Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band’, but such is the whim of these surveys.

Anyway, here’s the top ten (every one “changed the world as we know it” if the pundits commenting were to be believed):

1. Radiohead - Ok Computer
2. U2 - The Joshua Tree
3. Nirvana - Nevermind
4. Michael Jackson - Thriller
5. Pink Floyd - Dark Side Of The Moon
6. Oasis - Definitely Maybe
7. The Beatles - Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
8. Madonna - Like A Prayer
9. Guns N' Roses - Appetite For Destruction
10. The Beatles – Revolver

The full top ten is at :
http://www.channel4.com/entertainment/tv/microsites
/G/greatest/albums/results.html

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THOM YORKE PROTESTS FOR TRADE JUSTICE
Talking of which, Radiohead star Thom Yorke was at a rally with 25,000 other people outside parliament on Friday. The event, organised by War On Want and the Trade Justice Movement, saw the singer take part in two vigils, a five hour painting performance (with the help of friend Stanley Donwood) and a one-off acoustic show.

Yorke told NME: "It is important to remind (Tony) Blair and Gordon (Brown) of their promises really. They are talking the whole thing up and they are on the campaign trail and it (trade justice) is one of the many things we are hassling them about.”

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BLOC PARTY HOPE FOR GODLIKE FUTURE
Extremely attractive (apparently) Bloc Party vocalist Kele Okereke has told Xfm that he would love for his band to be declared ‘Godlike Geniuses’ at a future NME Awards ceremony. Past recipients of the award include John Peel, U2 and New Order.

Okereke: “Every week something amazing has happened. There’s been so many things that have been so good. Our time in the public eye has gone relatively quickly, but we’ve spent five years touring on buses, with no one paying any interest in what we were doing, so it feels nice that we’re got our revenge on the world. How could things get any better? We could be declared 'Godlike Genius' at the next NME Awards or something like that, that would be the pinnacle. Or maybe name an award after me… ‘The Bloc Party Award for Innovation’”, he joked. Or, at least, we hope it was a joke.

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REZNOR OFFERS FANS CHANCE TO MAKE HIM A WOMAN
Trent Reznor has posted new single ‘The Hand That Feeds’ on the Nine Inch Nails official website as a file that can be manipulated using recording program Garageband, and he is encouraging fans to create their own songs from constituent parts of the track supplied by the band.

"For quite some time I've been interested in the idea of allowing you the ability to tinker around with my tracks - to create remixes, experiment, embellish or destroy what's there," Reznor wrote. "Change the tempo. Add new loops. Chop up the vocals. Turn me into a woman. Replay the guitar. Anything you'd like. I gave this to my crew and band to test out and all work effectively stopped for a while - it's fun to mess around with. I've now heard a country version of the track as well as an abstract Latin interpretation."

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FOUNTAINS OF WAYNE RARITIES RELEASE
Fountains Of Wayne are to release a two disc set of rarities. The album, to be called ‘Out-of-State Plates’ is to be released this summer and includes two brand new songs aND a 1999 cover of Britney’s ‘Baby One More Time’, a track which, whilst never actually released, has had frequent airings on The Howard Stern Show. Meanwhile the band are working on a new studio album which aS yet has no release date set.

The track list for ‘Out-of-State Plates’ is as follows:

Disc one:
Maureen
California Sex Lawyer
Janice's Party
Karpet King
Baby I've Changed
I Know You Well
You're Just Never Satisfied
I'll Do the Driving
Nightlight
I Want You Around
Trains and Boats and Planes
Places
Can't Get It Out of My Head

Disc two:
The Girl I Can't Forget
...Baby One More Time
Elevator Up
Comedienne
Kid Gloves
Today's Teardrops
She's Got a Problem (live)
These Days
I Want an Alien for Christmas
The Man in the Santa Suit
Killermont Street
Half a Woman
Imperia

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SINGLE REVIEW: The Infadels - Give Yourself To Me (Wall Of Sound)
TV adverts today have become an astonishingly successful new vehicle for new and old artists. Ever since everyone rushed out and bought 'Spaceman' by Babylon Zoo (before immediately binning it), commercials have fashioned some of the nation’s biggest hits as well as providing additional exposure for some more respected artists. So personally, I was very pleased to discover my favourite muzak - from Three's great offbeat 'jellyfish' ad, was in fact the work of Wall Of Sound's original, electrifying band, The Infadels. Moreover, I was even happier to discover that 'Give Yourself To Me' was a satisfying track throughout, rather than simply the disappointing owner of a notable 10-second chorus/intro/hook, that these sound-beds frequently turn out to be (they chose that bit for a reason after all!) The Infadels have a great flair for this driving, punky electro-rock, and 'GYTM' proves just that. As well as being the proud owner of the beefiest bass line of 2005, 'GYTM' is also an exhilarating, guitar-driven hunk of crossover fun, which inventively fuses synths and guitars to great effect. This download-only single is also released with the Jagz Kooner-produced belter, 'Reality TV' - a good 'ol fashioned rant about society's worrying obsessions, and another inspired blast of music. Look out for the upcoming LP later in the year. OG
Release date: 25 Apr
Press contact: Wall Of Sound IH [all]

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THIS WEEK’S STUDENT RADIO CHART

1. [NE] Gorillaz - Feel Good Inc (EMI/Parlophone)
2. [2] The Chemical Brothers – Believe (EMI/Virgin)
3. [10] Garbage - Why Do You Love Me (Warner)
4. [9] Bloc Party - Banquet (Wichita)
5. [1] Kings Of Leon - King Of Rodeo (SonyBMG/Handmendown)
6. [12] Daft Punk - Robot Rock (EMI/Virgin)
7. [NE] Caesars - Jerk It Out (EMI/Virgin)
8. [RE] The Bees - Chicken Payback (EMI/Virgin)
9. [15] The Subways - Oh Yeah (Warner)
10. [NE] Feeder - Feeling A Moment (Echo)
11. [28] Bodyrockers - I Like The Way (Universal/Mercury)
12. [NE] Audio Bullys - Shot You Down (EMI/Source)
13. [NE] Athlete - Half Light (EMI/Parlophone)
14. [NE] Snoop Dogg - Signs (Ft. Justin Timberlake & Charlie Wilson) (Universal/Polydor)
15. [NE] Razorlight - Somewhere Else (Universal/Mercury)
16. [NE] Maximo Park – Graffiti (Warp)
17. [NE] Destiny’s Child – Girl (SonyBMG /Columbia)
18. [Re] Estelle - Go Gone (V2)
19. [3] Jimmy Eat World – Work (Universal/Interscope)
20. [5] Interpol - C’mere (Matador)
21. [NE] The Features - Blow It Out (Universal)
22. [NE] The Killers - Smile Like You Mean It (Lizard King)
23. [NE] The Duke Spirit - Love Is An Unfamiliar Name (Universal/Polydor)
24. [NE] The Departure - Lump In My Throat (EMI/Parlophone)
25. [11] The Ravonettes - Ode To LA (SonyBMG/Columbia)
26. [NE] Hal - Play The Hits (Rough Trade)
27. [NE] Oasis – Lyla (Big Brother)
28. [NE] The Futureheads - Decent Days And Nights (679)
29. [NE] Akon – Lonely (Universal/Polydor)
30. [NE] The Coral - In The Morning (Deltasonic)

In case you wondered, lots of new entries because this is the first one of the new term.

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ELTON TELLS BRIAN HE’S SORRY
Elton John is allegedly planning to apologise to Brian McFadden with regard to those comments he made about the former Westlife star’s dire song Irish Son. "Brian is probably a nice man, but I nearly died when I listened to Irish Son," Elton said at the time. "I absolutely hated it. It's the worst lyric on a record I've ever heard. I had to take it off in case I committed suicide. It's just horrible. No, no, no."

Elton now appears to regret the outburst and the criticism, saying "I am going to take him out to dinner to apologise. I just can't keep my mouth shut."

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LIBERTY X GIRL FEARS DRINK SPIKED
According to The Sun, Liberty X girl Michelle Heaton fears her drink was spiked with a date rape drug after she collapsed recently at The Penthouse Club in London after just two drinks. The singer said that she was dancing strangely, couldn't control her balance and had to be taken out of the back door by boyfriend and former CMU favourite Pop Idol contestant Andy Scott Lee.

She said: "It was terrifying. I can remember arriving at the club and then having two vodka and cokes. I'm a Geordie lass and I can take my drink. Andy told me what happened and I was horrified I know my drink must have been spiked for me to behave like that. I felt like my head was going to explode. It's all very scary and from now on I'm going to make sure I never take my eye off a drink for a second."

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MARIAH TO APPEAR AS EXTRA?
Mariah Carey is apparently hoping for a cameo in Ricky Gervais’ new show Extras, the vehicle all the celebs are queuing up to get in on.

A BBC source has said: "We thought it was a wind-up when we got a call and were told Mariah wanted to speak to us. We were filming that day, but plan to hook up with her later in the series if she is in town."

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CAROL DECKER WINS THE DAY
Well, we’ve not been reporting on ITV’s pop revival reality show ‘Hit Me Baby One More Time’ so far, mainly because we all managed to successfully avoid watching it until this weekend. But given that we stumbled across it on Saturday and need a reason to justify why we didn’t turn over, here’s a round up.

Despite being up against some tough competition, Carol Decker came through to win this instalment, beating Baccara, Mica Paris, Nick Heyward and the Pasadenas. The red-topped power singer performed famous T’Pau hit ‘China In Your Hands’ as well as a rocked up cover of Jamelia’s ‘Superstar’. We’re kind of glad she won, though we were also very taken with Nick Hayward’s outstanding version of Busted’s ‘Crashed The Wedding’.

In any case, we guess that means that the lovely Carol goes through to a Grand Final, or something. So well done her.

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