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TODAY'S NEWS

Denise Van Outen quits Capital Radio

Remy Ma launches appeal
Woman dies at Kendal Calling
U2 deny tour
New John Peel memoirs to be published
Metallica are human, not political
Muse Streets track "a bit of a laugh"
Single review: Micachu - Golden Phone (Accidental)
Keane counter not for album, right?
Pendulum launch new website with Coldplay cover
Cocker scores a fox
Sugababes gettin' funky
More Be Your Own Pet news
Those Dancing Days reveal debut album
Dartz return
The Faint announce tour dates
Noah & The Whale announce UK tour
EMI sell Chinese ventures
The Orchard announce Sony/ATV deal
NME.com doubles users
Single review: Charli XCX - !Franchesckaar! (Orgy Music)
Rapper takes on baggy trousers
Gallaghers threatened by 'Grease' star
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MONDAY 4TH AUGUST

JUSTIN ROBERTSON
As a prolific DJ, producer and remixer, and frontman of Lionrock, Justin Robertson has been a figure on the UK music scene for nearly twenty years. His latest project, Thee Earls, has been picking up high praise for debut single 'Bombs To Fall', so we thought we'd better find out what's going on behind the scenes.

 

Q1 How did you start out making music?
Really by accident. I've been a music nerd from an early age, but fell into the studio when I worked in a record shop in Manchester. They wanted a remix doing, and I said I would have a go! I hadn't been in a studio before that day, so lots of bluffing was needed. It all seemed to work out fine!

Q2 What inspired your latest single?
It's a kind of stream of consciousness story about a schizophrenic in Stockport town centre.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
Well with Thee Earls, it's a case of Gez forging a dramatic backing track, then me writing some crazy words about everyday life. It's a very organic process, a great pleasure.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
Lyrically I think that the David Byrne/Mark E Smith observational, free flowing style is something I think fits in with the vibe, but I am a very big fan of Stuart Murdoch also. I think you can hear the Talking Heads and The Fall very much in evidence. Musically I guess we touch on Joy Division and that kind of Brain Eno layered production.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
Pass the ammunition...

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest single/album, and for the future?
Stadiums, adoration, statues, halls of fame, you know the usual. Really just want the opportunity for people to hear our unique wiggly vibrations, and have some fun, that's most important!

MORE>> www.myspace.com/djjustinrobertson and www.myspace.com/theeearls

 

CHEMICAL BROTHERS
Everyone's favourite electronic duo return next month with a greatest hits collection "with a kick and twist", the nattily titled 'Brotherhood', which places 'Galvanize', ' Hey Boy, Hey Girl', etc, etc, next to exciting new tracks, such as forthcoming single and bone-crunching rave monster, 'Midnight Madness'. Indeed, it's this release that's behind today's SNAP recommendation as the video, directed by Dom & Nic, is an absorbing and funny piece featuring a goblin in a sparkling gold lycra suit practicing, as goblins do, parkour. Add this to the buzz around the CD release of their entire Electronic Battle Weapon series - which were previously only available in limited runs - and you've got one big summer ahead for Ed and Tom. Preview the video at YouTube and revisit the classics at their MySpace, both linked below.

www.myspace.com/thechemicalbrothers
www.youtube.com/watch?v=6fSXEag68U8

 

DENISE VAN OUTEN QUITS CAPITAL RADIO
As predicted last week, Denise Van Outen has quit the Capital Radio breakfast show just six months in to her twelve month contract. Van Outen, of course, joined Johnny Vaughan as co-host of the show earlier this year in a move designed to help Capital regain its number one status in London, the duo having enjoyed such success presenting the 'Big Breakfast' together.

However, despite the hype surrounding the on air reunion, the Johnny and Denise show remained in third place in the London music radio breakfast show stakes, behind Heart's Jamie Theakston and Magic's Neil Fox. But it is seemingly the early mornings rather than the lacklustre ratings that are behind Van Outen's decision to quit. She reportedly told the new management at Capital owners GCap (introduced as part of Global's takeover) almost as soon as they arrived that the early starts were interfering with her TV work and personal life.

Confirming her departure yesterday, GCap told reporters: "Denise asked for a meeting and made it clear to her new bosses that she wasn't able to handle the early starts as they were impacting on her personal life and her health. It takes a special kind of person to consistently rise early and give the public the level of entertainment they expect each morning. Denise requested the opportunity to break her contract immediately and we obliged".

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REMY MA LAUNCHES APPEAL
Remy Ma has announced a new appeal against her much previously reported eight-year prison sentence for assault, possession of illegal weapons and coercion, hiring lawyer William Murphy Jr to represent her. Murphy knows a thing or to about hip hop legalities, given he also represents Redman, Mary J Blige, Missy Elliott and DMX, for whom he recently reversed a $1.6 million verdict.

Murphy told AllHipHop.com: "We are pleased to handle Remy Ma's appeal. We are confident that when we present all the facts, the public, for the first time, will get a true picture of what actually happened; and Remy will be vindicated".

Remy Ma added: "With the addition of Mr Murphy, Ravenell, and Levitt, I now believe I have assembled a team that will have the might and expertise to tell my side of the story. I am confident that after hearing everything my side will prevail. Mr Murphy comes highly recommended and I am pleased that he has agreed to lead my defence team".

Ma was accused of shooting another woman in a dispute over money, and then fleeing the incident. Ma claims the gun went off by accident while the two women scrapped.

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WOMAN DIES AT KENDAL CALLING
A twenty year old woman died of a suspected drugs overdose at Lake District music festival Kendal Calling last weekend. She was apparently taken ill on Friday night and rushed to hospital but died the following day.

The festival has come in for some flack for putting an interview on their website and in their programme which quoted local band Deathretro as saying: "Don't just get pissed or take a load of drugs and miss all the bands. Do all three" when asked "What's your essential festival survival tip?"

A spokesperson for Kendal Calling told The Sun: "The comments made by bands within the festival booklet do not reflect in any way the festival stance on drug usage. A full police investigation is now under way".

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U2 DENY TOUR
U2 have announced that reports of upcoming tour dates are untrue, as Bono has decided to take up that offer of cash for AIDS charities if he retires from public life. No, not really, they just aren't touring.

In a statement, the band said: "Just a note to correct reports that tickets are becoming available for planned U2 shows. The reports are mistaken, there are no tour dates for the band at the moment - so please don't buy tickets for U2 shows you see advertised. You can be sure any future live announcements will be made on U2.com as soon as they are confirmed".

The band are currently recording their new album with Brian Eno, which is reportedly due for release later this year, at which point the band will probably tour. Don't quote us on that, though. They might never tour, ever. I would advise you to never buy tickets for U2 gigs, even if there is an official announcement, just to be on the safe side.

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NEW JOHN PEEL MEMOIRS TO BE PUBLISHED
Following the success of John Peel's 2005 autobiography 'Margrave Of The Marshes', a new collection of previously unpublished articles by the late and legendary DJ will be published later this year. The collection, entitled 'The Olivetti Chronicles: Notes On Life, Music And Facial Hair', was compiled by Peel's wife Sheila and will be on sale from 23 Oct.

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METALLICA ARE HUMAN, NOT POLITICAL
Metallica's James Hetfield has denied that the video for the band's new single, 'The Day That Never Comes', makes any political statement about war. Directed by Danish director Thomas Vinterberg, the video follows a soldier who helps an injured comrade and then has to decide whether or not to kill someone else who he suspects may be a suicide bomber.

Hetfield told MTV: "The main [theme of the video] is the human element of forgiveness and someone doing you wrong, you feeling resentment and you being able to see through that in the next situation that might be similar and not take your rage or resentment out on the next person and basically keep spreading the disease of that through life. The one thing that I wasn't keen on here was Metallica plugging into a modern war or a current event [that] might be construed as some sort of political statement on our part. There are so many celebrities that soapbox their opinions, and people believe it's more valid because they're popular. For us, people are people – you should all have your own opinion. We are hopefully putting the human element in what is an unfortunate part of life. There are people over there dealing with situations like this, and we're showing the human part of being there".

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MUSE STREETS TRACK "A BIT OF A LAUGH"
Muse have issued a statement to clear up any confusion about a collaboration between them and The Streets' Mike Skinner, which has appeared online. Some reports suggested that the song, 'Who Knows Who' would be appearing on the new Streets album, but Muse say this is not so.

In a message on their official website, Muse said: "The track was the result of a late night jam session and something we did for a bit of a laugh featuring a blues riff we have been playing live recently upon which Skinner recorded some vocals. It is not intended to be a serious release so we are happy for it to be leaked around unofficially".

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SINGLE REVIEW: Micachu - Golden Phone (Accidental)
Micachu is a 21 year old singer-songwriter who shall henceforth be filed under the 'maverick new pop artists' section (see also: Patrick Wolf, FrYars, Bar For Lashes etc). 'Golden Phone' doesn't really sound like anyone else, although it does bear the hallmark of Matthew Herbert, who produced it (but it's far more tuneful and melodic than most of his work, if truth be told). Both 'Golden Phone' and its ace b-side 'Turn Me Weller' can simply be described thus: deliriously bonkers pop with funny noises, warm harmonies and, er, more funny noises. The vocals could be male or female (they're the latter) and the lyrics are indecipherable, but this is still a perfect pop song in its own way. As long as Micachu doesn't let the need for experimentalism overcome the melodic suss showcased here, her future could be very bright indeed. MS
Release Date: 11 Aug
Press Contact: Bang On [all]

Buy from Amazon

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KEANE COUNTER NOT FOR ALBUM, RIGHT?
Okay, here's a lesson in why you shouldn't write news stories that involve numbers when you're tired. Yesterday we reported that Keane's new album will be out on 10 Oct, which is true, but we also said that a counter on their site was counting down to that date, as well. But it's not. It was counting down to 11.00am yesterday morning, when the band made a new track, 'Spiralling', available for download. That should have been reasonably apparently from looking at the numbers, but it wasn't. Sorry about that. Now I've gone and let you spend an entire day without that new Keane song. You'd best go over to www.keanemusic.com and rectify that. The song will be taken down at 11.00am on 11 Aug.

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PENDULUM LAUNCH NEW WEBSITE WITH COLDPLAY COVER
Pendulum have launched their new website by giving away a free download of their cover of Coldplay's 'Violet Hill', which they recently recorded for BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge. The track has already received so many requests for repeat plays that the station has added it to its A-list.

The new website aims to act as a hub for all Pendulum's online activity, drawing in content from MySpace, Flickr and YouTube, as well as launching a new members' area, 'The Other Site', where fans can post their own profiles.

Check it all out at www.pendulum.com

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COCKER SCORES A FOX
Jarvis Cocker is working on the soundtrack to Wes Anderson's movie adaptation of Roald Dahl's 'Fantastic Mr Fox'. The singer told Time Out Chicago: "I've written three, four songs, and some of that might become bits of the score".

This isn't the first time Cocker has made music for a kids' movie, of course. He wrote three songs for 'Harry Potter & The Goblet Of Fire', and he performed in the movie as part of The Weird Sisters, a band which also including Johnny Greenwood and Phil Selway of Radiohead and Steve Mackey from Pulp.

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SUGABABES GETTIN' FUNKY
Sugababes have been in the studio with Orson frontman Jason Pebworth working on some funky new material. Sounds painful. Anyway, Pebworth told The Daily Star: "I've just come out of the studio with the girls and they're like machines - they don't stop working. You gotta admire them. The new tunes are taking them in a much funkier direction. I think this next album will be their finest moment. You're always trying to do something special for Sugababes because they're no ordinary pop band".

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MORE BE YOUR OWN PET NEWS
Following the announcement that Be Your Own Pet will split after their four upcoming UK shows, the band's Jonas Stein and John Eatherly have announced that they will now work full time on their side project, Turbo Fruits. Their debut album is set for release via Ark Recordings in March next year.

Have a listen here: www.myspace.com/turbofruits

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THOSE DANCING DAYS REVEAL DEBUT ALBUM
Those Dancing Days have announced that their debut album, 'In Our Space Hero Suits', will be released via Wichita on 6 Oct. It will be preceded by the single, 'Home Sweet Home', on 29 Sep. There is no official confirmation as to whether the band have managed to include a song that will make all listeners live for 100 years, as guitarist Rebecka Rolfart recently told us she would like to.

Tracklist:

Intro
Falling In Fall
I Know Where You Live
Run Run
Hitten
Actionman
Shuffle
Home Sweet Home
Duet Under Water
Kids
Those Dancing Days
Space Hero Suits

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DARTZ RETURN
To be honest, when Dartz announced they were putting the band on hiatus a year ago, I thought that would probably be the last we saw of them. I think that just goes to prove that I should be a little less cynical sometimes. The band said they needed some time to sort out "non-band" things and work on their musical skills if they were to deliver a second album that would live up to the hype stirred by their first. Well, now they're back with a new mini-album, 'The Sad History Of The Village Of Alnerique' and a short tour to ease them back into things.

Of the album, guitarist Henry J Carden says: "For all of our old songs, the writing process basically consisted of us working on the music first and then once that was sorted, we'd work on the lyrics. For this release though, Philip [J. Maughan] had written some words and we thought it'd be interesting to try and write some music which suited the lyrics. It was a different approach for us but I think it's resulted in 'The Sad History Of…' being a much more cohesive collection of songs than any of our past releases".

The Teeside trio will tour the following dates in September:

17 Sep: Edinburgh, The GRV
18 Sep: Sunderland, The White Rooms
19 Sep: Leeds, The Cockpit
20 Sep: London, The Luminaire
21 Sep: Southend, Chinnerys

'The Sad History Of The Village Of Alnerique' tracklisting:

The Arrival, Building Alnerique
Oskar And Ofelia
A New Venture from Mordecai & Sons
The Clandestine Choir
What Happens To Places Where Spaces Should Be
The Lay Of The Land
Embers
The End, Moving On

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THE FAINT ANNOUNCE TOUR DATES
The Faint will make a brief stop in the UK and Ireland to play some gigs, ahead of the release of their fourth album, 'Fasciinatiion'. Good, good, good.

Dates:

27 Aug:Bristol Thekla
28 Aug:Manchester Ruby Lounge
29 Aug:London Cargo
30 Aug:Dublin Electric Picnic
31 Aug:Argyll Hydro Connect Festival

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NOAH & THE WHALE ANNOUNCE UK TOUR
Noah & The Whale, whose single 'Five Years Time' is playing on a loop across the entire country at the moment (I don't think it's just in my head), have announced a whole load of UK tour dates for Oct and Nov. The band's debut album, 'Peaceful, The World Lays Me Down' is released this month.

Tour dates:

20 Oct: Oxford, Academy
21 Oct: York, Duchess
22 Oct: Leeds, Cockpit
24 Oct: Dundee, Fat Sam's
25 Oct: Glasgow, Stereo
27 Oct: Manchester, Academy 3
28 Oct: Dublin, Whelans
29 Oct: Belfast, Limelight
31 Oct: Liverpool, Bumper
1 Nov: Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
2 Nov: Exeter, Phoenix
3 Nov: Portsmouth, Wedgewood Rooms
4 Nov: Norwich, Waterfront
6 Nov: London, Koko
7 Nov: Brighton Concorde 2
8 Nov: Coventry, Kasbah
9 Nov: Bristol Thekla
10 Nov: Cambridge, The Junction
11 Nov: Birmingham, Glee Club
12 Nov: Sheffield, Leadmill
13 Nov: Bournemouth, Old Fire Station

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EMI SELL CHINESE VENTURES
With everyone in the music business looking at the potential of growth in the Chinese market as the battle against piracy there gains some momentum, EMI have, erm, sold half their operations in the region. The major has sold its share in two Hong Kong based record labels to its business partner in those joint ventures, Typhoon. The Typhoon based company has also bought EMI Music Taiwan. As part of the deal with Typhoon, which is led by former EMIer Norman Cheng, the indie will have the rights to distribute international EMI artists in China and Taiwan while the major will have the rights to release any Typhoon artists globally should they wish to. Specifics of the deal have not been reported, though Billboard say they've heard EMI has an option to buy back into the Chinese businesses in the future. We do know it doesn't effect EMI Music Hong Kong, which remains within the EMI Group.

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THE ORCHARD ANNOUNCE SONY/ATV DEAL
Independent digital music aggregator The Orchard have announced a licensing deal with publishing major Sony/ATV which will cover all territories other than the US, and give them rights to digitally distribute the work of songwriters affiliated with the pubbery. Sony/ATV International Senior VP Guy Henderson told reporters: "In this new world where music companies are expected to handle all facets of the business, this deal not only provides an opportunity for new income streams for our more established writers, but opportunities for our up and coming songwriters as well".

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NME.COM DOUBLES USERS
IPC Ignite says that NME.com has seen a 107% year on year increase in unique users - with their latest ABCe figures showing 3.5 million unique users, up from 1.69 million in the same stats report last year.

Announcing the online boost, NME publishing director Paul Cheal told reporters: "NME is dedicated to optimising cross-platform content, extending brand reach, taking its music-loving audience in new directions and offering innovative solutions for advertisers. Via its various platforms – print, NME Radio, NME TV, mobile, online, events – NME reaches up to 1.5 million music enthusiasts every week".

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SINGLE REVIEW: Charli XCX - !Franchesckaar! (Orgy Music)
Holy haberdashery, Batman! Surely, this is not a representation of the future of British music. Charli XCX is a gimmick-laden marketing dream. A unique selling point - check - at 15, Charli is very much still in her formative years. An obvious talent - check - she writes and performs all of her tracks and has been performing since the tender age of 4. A cutting edge sound - check - her quite good Nash/Allen little-English-street-darling style of vocals battles with hardcore electro beats for your aural attention. '!Francheskaar!' is an unabashed jealous rant directed at the popular girl in school who's noticed by all the boys and envied by all the girlS because she has nice hair, eyes and footwear. This track feels really synthetic - an apparent trait of electronic music, I do realise, but this comes off as being as blatantly manufactured as Britney. This feeling is enhanced by the fact the single is accompanied by no less than four remixes, surely at least one to cater for most tastes. Her relentless shrieks are likely to win the youth vote but '!Francheskaar!' makes me want to do a double Da Vinci and cut off my ears. MB
Release Date: 18 Aug
Press Contact: EMMS Publicity [NP, NR], La Digit [O]

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RAPPER TAKES ON BAGGY TROUSERS
"Baggy trousers, dirty shirt/Pulling hair and eating dirt/Teacher comes to break it up/Back of the 'ead with a plastic cup," sang Madness on 'Baggy Trousers'. But those days of youthful exuberance and slapstick violence are gone. The world of trousers has taken a darker turn, and someone needs to sort it out. That someone, apparently, is Dooney Da Priest, a rapper and part-time preacher, whose new single 'Pull Your Pants Up!' is launching a campaign against hip hop fashion.

Dooney has been involved in 'The Anti-Sagging Pants Campaign', started by Dallas deputy mayor Dwaine Caraway, since 2006 and has been working tirelessly to have baggy trousers banned. Now, with this single, he's hoping to simply embarrass people into wearing tighter trousers.

The rapper says: "Because hip-hop/rap music or rap celebrities have promoted this fashion trend to be cool, I wanted to use the same approach in rap music to make it uncool and educate saggers on what saggin' truly means". And just in case you're not sure what it 'truly' means, Dooney points out: "Saggin' is just the N-word spelt backwards". So that's that cleared up.

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GALLAGHERS THREATENED BY 'GREASE' STAR
Do you remember that story about how Noel and Liam Gallagher had to stop going out drinking together because of the trouble they got into? Well, this probably proves why they should stick to that rule. Noel Gallagher has revealed that he and his brother were recently threatened with a knife by actor Jeff Conaway, who played Kenickie in the movie 'Grease' and has more recently been on 'Celebrity Rehab', after they teased him about his limp. This came shortly after Marilyn Manson dedicated a song to them at a show in LA. I am not making this up.

Gallagher said: "Before one song [Manson] goes, 'I wanna dedicate this song to the two biggest fuck-ups in England!' Then he's going, 'Oasis are in the house tonight!', and he starts doing 'Champagne Supernova' and screaming, 'These two guys from England, they're bigger fuck-ups than I am! Anyway, so we go back after the gig and we just got fucking absolutely beyond pissed on absinthe. That's when Kenickie from 'Grease' fucking pulled a knife on us. He comes into the dressing room, and Liam's been watching 'Celebrity Rehab' so he's going, 'Ah, there's fucking Kenickie!' So we get him over and we're all pissed, so we're like, 'Why are you on a fucking walking stick, you lightweight!?' He's going, 'My back's fucked. Fucking John Travolta in 'Grease' - he's so fucking short, they made me stoop over and that's when I invented the famous Kenickie walk!' We were going, 'What?! The famous Kenickie walk?' He started doing this walk so we're giving him a bit of stick. And he says, 'Hey, I'm fucking still young enough to pull a knife on you!' and he whips out this flick-knife. We just laughed, like, 'You silly old man!' That was a great night - we all got more drunk on absinthe and argued in the van all the way home about some Kinks fucking B-side".

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