CMU Daily - on the inside Friday 29th September
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Recording and publishing sectors reach agreement ahead of tribunal
- PPL nearly ready with interactive licence
- Police make arrests over Scala shooting
- Megaman cleared of murder
- British classical fans like to download
- Album review: Subtle - For Hero: For Fool
- Oasis have no future
- Slipknot to release DVD
- Bob Dylan tape up for auction
- ODB's last album to be released
- Tom Waits releases stuff
- Shakira tops Latin Grammy nominations
- Madonna is world record rich
- Rakes frontman takes anti-fur stance
- Fightstar don't care about charts and stuff
- World Service launch competition for young music talent
- 3 expand unsigned competition
- Songwriting competition deadline looms
- NME Student Guide reveals top student anthems
- Field Music single, tour
- Bonnie Prince Billy dates
- Album review: The Kings Of Techno Compiled By Laurent Garnier And Carl Craig
- EMI publishing chief planning jump to Warner?
- EMI sell the tower
- Microsoft plan to match iPod pricing with Zune
- EMAP merge Magic AM into Big City Network
- GCap say revenues down
- Satellite radio is coming to the UK
- Lily Allen date up for grabs


OK, we promised you Insomniacs Ball news, so here it is. Yep, our good friends Kill All Hippies will once again take over the vaults beneath London Bridge station for another all night indoor mini-festival - and we can confirm that The Young Knives, The Rumble Strips, White Rose Movement, Roland Shanks, The Blood Arm, Dead Disco, Neil's Children and The Officers have already been confirmed to play. The event, following up from the storming first Insomniacs Ball back in April, will take over London's seOne club on 25 Nov. There'll be three live stages plus plenty of bars and club rooms, and this time there'll be a restaurant and a chill out zone promising silent films, performance artists and laughing gas. Eddy Temple-Morris, The Freelance Hellraiser, Jagz Kooner, Gavin Nugent (Fully Comp) and Mark Beaumont (NME) are among the DJs already confirmed. Needless to say, we'll keep you up to date with all things Insomniacs Ball in the coming weeks here in the CMU Daily, meanwhile headlines will be posted at, and tickets are already available via - they're just £21.50 plus booking fee. Press info from [email protected]

PS: We haven't covered the fact that Radio 1 launched its new specialist schedule this week - sorry Radio 1. But we have to mention that as part of that revamp, Rob da Bank launches a new show this Sunday at midnight, promising a wonderfully eclectic mix of music "from techno and bleep to ambient and acoustic". Which means your Sunday evening radio listening should now go straight from 7pm to 2am - Eddy TM The Remix and Nick Luscombe Flomotion on Xfm till midnight, then switch over to the nation's favourite. Sorted.



VIGSY'S CLUB TIP: Canvas hosts BBE's 10th Anniversary.
The Barely Breaking Even label has gone from strength to strength in recent years, releasing a whole bunch of real quality stuff of late. So their tenth anniversary really shouldn't go by without a really big party, and this is it. Nicely breaking into three rooms, they have pulled in some of the stars of their compilations over the years. In Room 1 that means hip hop from Jazzy Jeff, Skillz and Spin Doctor. Room 2 is more house from Dimitri From Paris, the (still) exciting Jeremy Newall and label boss Pete Adarkwah. And Room 3 is hosted by Norman Jay (who many bandwagoners are only just latching onto you know), helped out by 'Farmer' Gilles (Peterson) and Ben Chapman. It rocks till late, and if you get your tickets early you can save a fiver, so I suggest booking in now.

Sat 30 Sep, Canvas, Kings Cross Goods Yard, off York Way, London N1, 10pm- 5am, £15 advance, more on door, info at, tickets at


This is no fun, I'd just invested in a new copyright tribunal hat, and then they go and reach an out of court settlement. So no hat wearing for me - well, not for the time being. Yep, large components of the previously reported dispute between the recording and publishing sectors of the British music industry were resolved yesterday, just hours before the dispute was due to go to court.

As previously reported, the BPI and the major download platforms and mobile operators have been in a long dispute with collecting society MCPS-PRS regarding what share of digital music revenues should go to the songwriters, composers and publishers which the royalty body represents.

For the last four years MCPS-PRS has said its members should receive 12% of digital revenues, almost double what they receive from physical CD sales because, they claim, the costs incurred by the record labels and retailers in delivering digital music are less. However, the labels and digital music sellers argued that they have to recoup the huge investments they have made in establishing the digital music market - something the publishing sector has not had to contribute to - and that therefore it was unfair for the songwriting community to be making such large demands at this time.

While MCPS-PRS had agreed to only charge an 8% royalty in the short term, essentially as an 'introductory discount', the society was still pushing to move up to 12%. With neither the BPI nor the major download platforms willing to take the necessary cuts to their own revenue share in order for MCPS-PRS members to enjoy such a royalty, they announced last year that they would take the collection society to a 'copyright tribunal' where an independent arbitrator would set a figure that all parties would have to adhere to.

That tribunal was due to begin on Monday, but was postponed until yesterday. Before the tribunal could start the BPI, MCPS-PRS and other parties announced that an out of court settlement had been reached that solved many key parts of the dispute - and in particular the royalty percentage. MCPS-PRS have agreed to a permanent 8% royalty, although with some guarantees on minimum pricing, which will shield the songwriting community to a certain extent from any price war in the digital music space. Certain streaming services will pay a 6.5% royalty.

The out of court settlement did not resolve all issues. Some of those issues will be dealt with in further out of court discussions, probably in November, while others are likely to still be dealt with at a smaller copyright tribunal, most likely sometime next month. But all parties yesterday agreed that the settlement provided a realistic framework that would allow all parties involved in digital music to move forward.

Confirming the deal BPI chief Peter Jamieson told Reuters: "This is a balanced voluntary settlement in which both sides can draw not just comfort, but excitement that they can go forward and build a business together based on an understanding that will work to the benefit of all".

EMI top bloke Eric Nicoli added: "Our collective focus must be on connecting our artists and consumers in every imaginable legal way and to returning our industry to growth".

Speaking for the other side, MCPS-PRS soon to be ex-boss Adam Singer said: "In a nutshell we're very happy about a voluntary settlement to go forward that is for both our benefits".


Hey, we're spoiling you this morning - more copyright news now.

A spokesman for PPL yesterday confirmed that the recording rights royalty body is "about two weeks off" being able to offer a licence for more interactive radio services. Speaking at the Copyright Forum held by the Association Of Streaming Media Companies in London yesterday, PPL's Matt McLeer said: "We know online webcasters want to offer more customization, more archive and interactive facilities. These services involve different rights than those that have traditionally be assigned to PPL, but we have been working with our members to put together a new licence for these kind of services, and we are very close to being able to confirm what that licence will be".

The new licence will be limited to UK based services, though McLeer added that he hoped that as collecting societies in other territories introduced similar licences, then a cross-territory licence like that which exists for linear web radio services would be possible. He also confirmed that major labels were involved in the new licence, though he couldn't confirm if all four were on board.

All of which is good news for the more innovative online radio services who have so far been unable to operate with a recorded music licence, because the nature of their services contravenes key components of the licences currently on offer. Well I say good news - most of the key players in the webcasting sector suspect they won't be able to sign up to the new licence either because, even if the new system accommodates the functionality of the services they offer, it is unlikely they will be willing to accept the price PPL is expected to ask for.

Price is a big issue for the webcasters in their ongoing negotiations with the recording rights collection society. While they agree that, as copyright law dictates, they should pay a "fair and reasonable" price for the music they play on their services, they dispute that the price currently being proposed by PPL is either of those things. The main bone of contention (other than the fact PPL is offering per-track-per-stream deals, rather than revenue share) is that the price webcasters will have to pay to licence the recordings they play is, they claim, ten to twenty times higher than that paid by the traditional broadcasters (ie AM and FM radio services) - despite the fact the traditional broadcasters are operating in a much more mature and lucrative market. As Martin Stiksel from Last FM, one of the other speakers at the ASMeC event, joked, "OK, so our services are 30% better than traditional radio, so you want us to pay 30% more - but 15 times more?"

Of course, as PPL are keen to point out (and some webcasters willing to admit), the online domain is a whole new world for the recorded rights sector, and a lot has been achieved given challenges new online services pose the rights owners. But with the webcasters unwilling, and to be fair, unable to pay the price being asked by PPL, if the rights owners they represent won't negotiate further, perhaps I will get to wear my copyright tribunal hat after all.

PS: As I said, PPL's announcement came at the Copyright Forum event staged yesterday by ASMeC, essentially the inaugural event of the streaming media industry's new trade association. Both rights owners and media companies were in attendance (they even let some lawyers in), and the association now hopes to use the discussions to help identify and then lobby on common issues faced by the streaming media sector. If you're interested in what exactly those discussions were - look out for CMU's full report of the event on the website next week.

PPS: Don't forget you can read our interview with lawyer Gregor Pryor on many of these issues right now at


Police have made three arrests in relation to the shooting that took place outside London's Scala venue last weekend. As previously reported, one Daniel Ross was shot dead outside the Kings Cross venue while it hosted the Garage Fever presents Old Skool Fever night. Other gigs at the venue were cancelled earlier this week while police investigations into the incident continued. Following those investigations, police confirmed yesterday that they had arrested one man on suspicion of murder, and two others in relation to the shooting.


Well, it took three trials to do it, but So Solid's Megaman has been cleared of murder. The rapper, real name Dwayne Vincent was, of course, accused of inciting his friend, former So Solid producer Carl Morgan, to murder love-rival Colin Scarlett back in November 2004. As previously reported, Morgan shot Scarlett four times outside his home in Tooting, after Scarlett had beaten him up earlier in the day, and was convicted of murder in October last year and sentenced to life imprisonment.

The case against Vincent was, as aforementioned, brought three times due to two previous juries' inability to reach a conclusion. Speaking after yesterday's verdict, the rap star said he felt like "a broken man", adding "I have finally been released from a system which has been designed to keep people behind bars whether they are innocent or guilty. I was an innocent man from the beginning - nothing has changed and nothing will ever change."


Gramophone magazine says that fans of the classical genre are fully embracing the digital music age following a reader survey which the title's editor reckons will "overturn our preconceptions about the kind of person who buys and listens to classical music".

Gramophone surveyed 60,000 of its readers about their music listening habits, and found that 75% used a computer, MP3 player or digital radio to listen to music. And while readers said they still listening to CDs and terrestrial radio, many also said they were now downloading music - with classical fans over the age of 50 having downloaded an average of eleven pieces of music last year. For those fans discovering downloading for the first time, Beethoven, Mozart and Peter Maxwell Davies are the most popular choices for a first download.

Discussing the survey, Gramophone editor James Jolly told reporters: "All ages actively enjoy classical music, with the over-50s showing themselves to be particularly dynamic. Not only do they prove that they have considerable purchasing power, but they are also technologically adept."

The survey also asked readers which piece of music they thought should open the 2012 Olympics in London. Sir Edward Elgar's 'Land Of Hope And Glory' was the top choice, followed by Gustav Holst's 'The Planets' and 'Chariots Of Fire' by Vangelis. I'd go with 'Land Of Hope And Glory'. I love 'Land Of Hope And Glory'.

This survey was announced at the MusicTank Think Tank discussion that took place ahead of the Classic FM Gramophone Awards that took place in London yesterday. As you'll remember, we spoke to Jolly ahead of that discussion, and you can read that interview here:


ALBUM REVIEW: Subtle - For Hero: For Fool (EMI/Lex)
If we accept the notion of hip-hop as an omni-genre - as a way of putting sounds together, a way of collaging sounds regardless of genre or origin rather than a specific sound in and of itself - then Subtle are undeniably hip-hop. Those groomed on chest beating machismo can protest and drag their knuckles all they want, but Subtle are precisely what Grandmaster Flash's 'Adventures On The Wheels Of Steel' should have evolved into. Forgoing the traditional method of genre-splicing - crate digging and turntablism - this six piece play cellos, guitars, samplers, drums, bass, woodwinds and found art, juxtaposing genres and techniques in a way that creates something genuinely new, instead of a series of quirky mis-matches. Mastheaded by doseone, the tongue twisting trickster behind cLOUDEAD, Themselves and Anticon's music for the advancement of hip-hop, Subtle has emerged as his most satisfying project yet with this album's balance of sonic exploration and high-energy vocal flows. It is colourful and fully tactile, perfectly reflecting the real life tale of a once Eminem-battling rapper transmogrifying into a poet weaving lullabies for angels. Swelling crescendos clash with glitch beats giving way to boom-bap swagger while soaring voices turn tack to double time surrealist raps; if the turntable has not yet been fully recognised as a legitimate instrument, then its compositional influence is felt heavily here. AM
Release Date: 2 Oct
Press Contact: EMI IH [all]


Well, no plans, anyway. Noel Gallagher says that Oasis have no immediate plans to do anything. Except to release that greatest hits album 'Stop The Clocks', of course. After that, nothing. Unless it just happens, maybe.

He told Billboard: "There's no plans to do anything. Saying that, there's no plans not to do anything, either. We're not like other bands in that respect. We're masters of our own destiny and take these things one album at a time. The last time we sat down and planned an album, it turned into 'Don't Believe The Truth,' and that took three years to record."

He added that there are eleven tracks left over from 'Don't Believe The Truth' that could be released, if they can be bothered: "There's seven that are good and four that are really great, so we could put an album out tomorrow if we wanted."


Those lovely Slipknot boys have confirmed details of a DVD release for later this year. 'Voliminal', a two disk set featuring a ninety minute documentary plus live footage, promos and hidden extras, will be out on 4 Dec. The band are currently working on their fourth album.


A tape with four songs by a teenage Bob Dylan on it is to be sold at auction in Dallas next month. It's reckoned that the tracks, recorded in the late 1950s by the musician and his childhood friend Ric Kangas, could fetch as much as $100,000. Kangas discovered the tape a few years ago but was unable to play it until he could find an old style player. Dylan sings on three songs and plays guitar on the fourth. Two tracks, 'I Got Trouble' and 'I Got A New Girl', appeared in Martin Scorsese's 2005 Bob Dylan documentary, 'No Direction Home'.


The late Ol' Dirty Bastard's final solo album is set to be released this autumn. The former Wu-Tang rapper, as previously reported, died from a drugs overdose in November 2004, but completed 'A Son Unique', originally planned to be released in August of 2005, prior to his death. The long player, produced by Wu-Tang's RZA and featuring guest appearances from the likes of Pharrell, Missy Elliot, Macy Gray, Method Man and Ghostface Killah, will be out on 17 Nov.


That previously reported Tom Waits three CD set is set for release on 20 Nov. Entitled 'Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers and Bastards', the limited edition collection is a compilation of 54 tracks, thirty of which are new recordings. It's packaged with a 94 page booklet. Don't know what's in it exactly, but with 94 pages to choose from, there must be something for everyone.

But here's the very good news for Tom Waits fans. They get to download three free tracks as a taster for the collection. From 3 Oct, 'Bottom Of The World' taken from the 'Brawlers' CD, plus 'You Can Never Hold Back Spring' from the 'Bawlers' CD will be available at A third track 'Road To Peace', also from 'Brawlers', will be available from 17.

Additionally, thirty-second preview clips of each songs on the three CDs will be streamed on the website for one week only. The tracks from 'Bawlers' will be available from 24 Oct, from 'Brawlers' from 31 Oct and 'Bastards' from 7 Nov.

'Long Way Home' will be released as a digital download single on 23 Oct. Press info on this from Coalition.


That Shakira woman leads the field in the nominations for this year's Latin Grammys, which take place in New York on 2 Nov. She is up for five awards, including Best Record, Best Song and Best Short Music Video, all for 'La Tortura', and Best Album and Best Female Pop Vocal Album for 'Fijacion Oral Vol 1'.

Elsewhere, Ricardo Arjona, Gustavo Cerati and Julieta Venegas were nominated for four awards each. Guatemalan singer Arjona is nominated for Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year, Best Short-Form Music Video and Best Pop Vocal Album. Cerati, from Argentina, is up for Best Rock Song, Album Of The Year and Best Rock Solo Vocal, and also Album Of The Year as producer of Shakira's aforementioned long player. And finally Mexico-born Venegas is up for Record Of The Year, Best Short-Form Music Video, Album Of The Year and Best Alternative Album.

Commenting on the shortlists, Latin Recording Academy president Gabriel Abero told Reuters: "Practically all the nominations today reflect a brush-stroke of every aspect of Latin music and Shakira is one of those".


Madonna has become the Guinness World Record holder for being the highest paid female singer. She knocked the previous incumbent, Britney Spears, off the top spot after she earned around $50 million US dollars in 2004. Britney had held the record since 2001 after having taken home earnings of $38.5 million in 2000.

Other music stars making it into the Guinness World Records 2007 book include the likes of James Blunt, Arctic Monkeys and Simon Cowell - Blunt because he sold 2,368,000 copies of 'Back To Bedlam' (I make it sound as though he did it himself, on a market stall, in Dagenham), Arctic Monkeys because of their fastest selling UK debut album, Cowell because he's paid a disgraceful amount of money to sit around judging people.

Ricky Gervais is also in there, because his is the most downloaded podcast.


The Rakes' frontman, Alan Donohoe, has written to the CEO of Burberry to ask them to stop using real fur in their fashion designs. He wrote: "Every year, millions of animals are trapped, drowned and beaten to death in the wild and strangled, electrocuted and skinned alive on fur farms. The fur trade is a violent, bloody industry, and the cold-hearted killing of animals for 'fashion' is indefensible. The Rakes will not shop at Burberry or participate in Burberry's ad campaigns until it pledges to stop supporting cruelty to animals and adopts a permanent fur-free policy."

Which sounds like some threat. Elsewhere, and as previously reported, The Rakes have a single release coming up on 9 Oct. Well, two actually. In fact, two 12"s, featuring remixes of their tracks. One features 'We Are All Animals', remixed by Statik plus '22 Grand Job' remixed by Filthy Dukes Society, the other 'Open Book', remixed by Uncle Buck, and the Loving Hands Tim Goldsworthy Remix of 'Binary Love'.


Fightstar's Charlie Simpson, my second favourite former member of Busted (Matt Willis is my favourite, just in case you'd forgotten that) says that he and his band don't care how high their singles chart. That's probably just as well, given that their latest single release 'Hazy Eyes' only made it to 47.

Simpson told Digital Spy: "It's not about the singles. Singles are pretty irrelevant to us [and] pretty irrelevant in music these days. If you look at the drop of sales of singles in the last ten years, it's ridiculous. For us it starts with us. If we're happy with the music, that's the most important thing, and then it goes to the fans, if they're happy with it that's awesome, and then the critics."

To be fair, what they're producing is not a particularly mainstream sound, so you wouldn't expect their singles to be charting in the top ten. Although their first single made it to 9. I suspect that was because people were still thinking about Busted.


The BBC World Service has launched a new competition to find the world's best young (ie under 18) music act with a promotion called The Next Big Thing. Young solo artists and groups from all over the world are being encouraged to enter. Entrants' music will be aired on the radio station throughout the Autumn, with listeners and industry types picking winners in December.

Producer of the competition, Ben Williams, told reporters: "What we're looking for is brilliant new music. The quality of the recording isn't important. There's fantastic musical talent all over the world but many people struggle to get that first break, and that's where we come in. It's something new and very exciting that we've never tried before."

The BBC's language services are involved in the venture, meaning that it doesn't matter what language entrants are in, they can still be considered. Entrants should send CDs and tapes to The Next Big Thing, Bush House, London. MP3s can be emailed to [email protected] Closing date for submissions is 3 Nov.


Talking of competitions for aspiring bands, phone firm 3 have just announced their latest initiative for unsigned talent. This is basically a slightly revamped version of the Student Music Awards they sponsored last year, though expanded to cover all unsigned bands, which is a bit of a shame, because without the college link it becomes just another unsigned band competition. But that's not to say bands shouldn't enter - because with studio time, a single release and a chance to play a final at ULU on 7 May next year, there's still plenty on offer for the winning band. All entrants' music will also be promoted to 3's 3.75 million customers.

For details of all this check, press info from Slice.


More competitions, and the deadline for the 2006 International Songwriting Competition is approaching. This is the annual competition for new songwriting talent - and is one of the biggies when it comes to new talent competitions, with Tom Waits, Brian Wilson, Frank Black, Peter Hook, Robert Smith and a host of top industry execs among those who will be judging the songs entered. And the overall grand prize is $25K. The deadline for entries is 16 Oct, so if you're a songwriter I'd suggest a visit to for details on how to enter.


The annual NME Student Guide is out, providing a guide to the sixty most studenty towns in the UK, and also revealing the top 50 student anthems, as voted for by 200 student DJs. The chart is dominated by newer talent - with Arctic Monkeys' 'I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor', The Killers' 'Mr Brightside' and Kaiser Chiefs' 'I Predict A Riot' filling the top three, though all time student night classics like The Smiths' 'This Charming Man', Joy Division's 'Love Will Tear Us Apart', Pulp's 'Common People' and, of course, Nirvana's 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' all in the top 20.

Commenting on the poll, NME Student Guide editor Dan Silver told CMU: "It's no surprise that the Arctic Monkeys have taken the top spot - 'I Bet You Look Good On The Dance Floor' is a worthy winner always guaranteed to pack any students' union bar with revellers. It's great to see some old classics can still work their magic too: The Smiths, Nirvana and Oasis will no doubt form the soundtrack for many a university night out!"

The annual Student Guide is free with this week's NME. Quite how they picked the sixty towns and cities to focus on I'm not sure (though the big ones are, of course, pretty obvious), though some in the music community in Stoke On Trent are feeling a bit left out, having been ignored by the guide, despite the city having two colleges and a population of 230,000 - not to mention nearby Keele University.

One local promoter told CMU: "Now Stoke-on-Trent is not the centre of the universe, I know, but with 230,000 people and two big universities along with several sixth form colleges it's a pretty big student city. And with several live music venues - including one which has its own CLUB NME every Saturday - you'd think we might merit a mention somewhere in their booklet! Even Guildford, Bedford, Canterbury, Bolton and Oldham get a mention before us. We're not big enough for a page on our own and we're not near enough to a bigger city to be mentioned as nearby, so we get wiped off the map!".

Still, I'm sure new students arriving in Stoke will survive without any guide at hand. Although, if I remember rightly, Stoke On Trent's a bloody difficult place to navigate, so perhaps they won't. Perhaps NME could fly Robbie in to offer some directions.


Field Music are to release their next single 'In Context' on 7" and download, on 9 Oct. Their second album, completed this summer, will be out 22 Jan next year. They'll be touring to coincide with the single release, as follows:

29 Sep: The Cluny, Newcastle
30 Sep: Barrels, Newcastle
01 Oct: Westport Bar, Dundee
02 Oct: Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh
03 Oct: The Admiral, Glasgow
04 Oct: Club Nirvana, Wigan
05 Oct: Clwb Ifor Bach, Cardiff
06 Oct: Night & Day, Manchester
07 Oct: The Independent, Sunderland
09 Oct: Lancaster, Lancaster Library
11 Oct: London, Barden's Boudoir
12 Oct: Sheffield The Grapes


Bonnie Prince Billy (whose new album I want, and which I don't have a copy of) is to play two shows at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London in the New Year, marking the musician's first UK dates since headlining the Green Man Festival in 2005. Tickets for the dates - 26 and 27 Jan (just before my birthday, remember to send me presents) are on sale now.

Also, he releases 'Cold And Wet', the second single from the aforementioned album (that I want), 'The Letting Go', on 13 Nov.


ALBUM REVIEW: The Kings of Techno Compiled by Laurent Garnier and Carl Craig (BBE)
This two disc compilation sees Garnier give us the 'History of Detroit' - which he really does, what with the likes of Aretha Franklin's 'Rock Steady' and the The Stooges' 1969 raucous guitar twanger 'No Fun' kicking things off. The history continues with The Temptations' 'Plastic Man' and Funkadelic's 'Bettino Bounce', though to be honest the latter seems well out of place (I confess I had to check what CD I had actually loaded at this point). But finally we get to techno, from Carl Craig's 'No More Words' and Jeff Mills' menacing 'Utopia' (which, I have to say, is far from his best cut) and Craig as BFC with his majestic 'Galaxy.' Elsewhere in this bit you have Arpanet's 'NTT' - which is simply dull, but then there's D.I.E's cut 'Get Up', which is better: minimal and pirate-esque with the MC's toasting giving it a party feel. It seems curious to then enter the realms of rap with Dabrye's 'Game Over' but it is, of course, Detroit's next musical wave... Craig's 'Influences' on Disc 2 are much more accessible. Kano's 'It's A War' features, as does Yello's rather average 'No More Words' and Art of Noise's 'Beat Box', as abstract as ever. Stepping up the tempo, Craig brings us up to date with the likes of Black Dog's sublime 'Virtual', which I remember Mixmaster Morris thrashing out in 1994, then Balil's 'Nort Route', and the epic 'Acid Eiffel' by Choice rounding off this disc well. Be warned - this is not a standard techno album in any shape way or form - it's a history lesson, and a navel gazing one at times. PV
Release date: 3 Oct
Press contact: Rocketscience Media [all]


Billboard reports that the co-CEO of EMI Music Publishing is resigning following discussions with Edgar Bronfman Jnr which could see the EMI boss move to his Warner owned rival.

Martin Bandier is expected to leave EMI within weeks and some sources say that he will quickly take up a role at Warner, possibly spearheading a bid by Bronfman Jnr to takeover EMI's publishing company. Whether Warner would consider an acquisition of EMI's publishing company apart from a wider takeover of the EMI Group isn't clear - though it is likely EMI's board would oppose a partial sell off even more than a complete takeover (they being rather keen in acquiring Warner Music for themselves, of course).

Bandier's decision to go now, assuming such a decision has been made, isn't a total surprise given that fellow co-CEO Roger Faxon was expected to take over the whole job early next year anyway, with Bandier staying on as Chairman for a further twelve months. However, the new timescales of Bandier's departure could mean a radical change of strategy is needed at EMI Music Publishing, especially if a presumably hostile takeover bid is in the offing.


Talking of EMI news, the North American division of EMI Music has sold the Capitol Records Tower in Hollywood, which probably won't mean much to most of us here in the UK, but it is quite a legendary building in the US music business, mainly given its distinctive appearance (looking a bit like a stack of records). However, EMI's record label operations will continue to be based in the Tower - they will lease it back from new owners Argent Ventures.


Microsoft announced yesterday that its new Zune music player would retail at the same prices as the similar capacity iPod, even though that means the IT giant will initially make a loss on its new venture. The 30GB Zune, due to launch in the US on 14 Nov, will retail for $249.99, just 99 cents more than the equivalent iPod.

The company's Senior Director Of Product Marketing, Scott Erickson, told reporters: "We had to look at what was in the market and offer a competitive price. We're not going to be profitable this holiday but the Zune project is a multiyear strategy."

While the Microsoft players will match Apple's pricing, they will not attempt to compete by undercutting their rival. Insiders say Microsoft hope they can compete with the market dominant iPod on features rather than price.

Michael Gartenberg, an analyst for research firm JupiterKagan, told reporters: "They're not getting into a pricing war. It will be a competition of features versus features, form factor versus form factor, winning the hearts and minds of consumers with something other than price".


EMAP is merging the management of its Magic AM and Big City FM radio stations, creating the Magically Big City AMFM Network, presumably. The new group will look after 32 of EMAP's local stations, with existing Big City Network boss Travis Baxter overseeing the enlarged operation, supported by seven newly appointed regional MDs. Each of the 32 stations will also keep their existing MDs, despite the new regional layer being added to the hierarchy.


GCap has said its revenues for the last six months will be down 9%, mainly because of the previously reported fewer-ads strategy being employed on flagship station Capital Radio (and strategy whereby less advertising is sold in the hope it will drive up the price of the air time available). Removing Capital figures from the equation, and allowing for the costs of launching Xfm Manchester, revenues for the six months ending tomorrow will be down by just 4% which, bosses say, is to be expected given the weak nature of the radio market at the moment.


Not sure whether this news will be welcomed by those in the struggling terrestrial radio sector, but it looks likely that satellite radio - which has proved so flippin popular in the US - could be coming to the UK - though not until 2010. Two groups say they plan to launch pan-European satellite radio services which will offer access to 250 channels through a subscription service accessed via special satellite radio receivers. US company WorldSpace, which will launch a satellite radio service in Italy next year, says it hopes to quickly expand elsewhere in Europe, while Spanish company Ondas Media says it is planning a full European launch in 2010.


A date with popstrel Lily Allen is currently being auctioned online, and has reached a figure of more than £2k, apparently. It's all part of a charity event, the fourth annual Celebrity Dream Date, run by, which also sees the likes of former Atomic Kitten Liz McLarnon, Chris Tarrant, Jimmy Carr and Jamie Theakston.

I'm rather wondering who in God's name would want a date with Chris Tarrant. A lot of people, apparently. He's up to 54 bids and £4,700. Which is significantly better than Miss Great Britain.

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