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TODAY'S NEWS

Top Stories

Anger at more Pinnacle delays and landlord stock claims
Virgin Group won't have to pay out over Zavvi collapse
Rapper beaten and robbed in LA
Snoop Dogg does line of headphones
In The Pop Courts
Fielder-Civil files for divorce
In The Studio
White Lies fear hype may write off album
Lil Wayne plans rock album
Release News
New Pet Shop Boys due in March
EMI to re-release Radiohead singles
Conchords to release songs after shows
Isaac Hayes reissue
War Child announce Heroes tracklisting
Gigs N Tours News
US city stages rally calling for AC/DC to play there
Festivals News
No Reading/Leeds tickets on sale yet
Reviews
Album review: A Camp - Colonia (Reveal Records)
The Music Business
China West suspend operations
Agency Group man goes to Live Nation
New State sign distribution deal with EMI
The Digital Business
NARM sign up to ERA's MP3 logo
China closes 90 websites as crackdown continues
The Media Business
BBC boss in favour of four/five merger
Zee arrives on Sky
No more late nights for RAJAR press response writers
US radio stations unsure about Britney censorship
Chart Of The Day
Total Rock World Album Chart
And finally...
Fergie marries
Charlotte Church baby born
Leona is rubbish live, says Cowell
Stop listening to Kanye you inconsiderate bastards

Paris jail horror

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TUESDAY 13TH JANUARY

DEATHRAY TREBUCHAY
Deathray Trebuchay are a six-piece band from east London who mix up jazz and gypsy-punk to create an explosive sound, described by the band themselves as being "like a vodka party in the middle of a hurricane".

The band release their debut single, 'Number 6/I'm Gonna Kick You In the Ass', which was produced by Acoustic Ladyland and Polar Bear's Seb Rochford, on 2 Feb. They will support Acoustic Ladyland at The Borderline in London on 17 Jan - more info on that here.

We spoke to frontman Llywelyn Ap Myrddin.

 

Q1 How did you start out making music?
After spending 18 months writing an opera, I ended up wanting to do something very different, so I had this idea of starting a band. I knew that the right people would be hard to find, so went on a six month search going to gigs and asking around. As soon as we sat down and started playing we knew we had something.

Q2 What inspired your latest single?
Traveling to the Guca festival in Serbia and listening to all the amazing gypsy musicians there.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
I starts out quite old school, pencil and paper, drawing crazy diagrams and writing some notes and rhythms. A lot of the time I just draw the textures, like, lots of dots here and wavy lines there. Then I flesh it out a bit on the piano and finish writing it on the computer. The dudes in the band are great readers, so I bring in parts and we play it through. They usually point out the stuff that's crap and we work on it in the rehearsal room. We recorded the single at the Pool which is a great big room with an amazing sound, so we could play it live which is very important for us. For the single we also had a lot of input from Seb Rochford who was amazing and helped us really pull apart the tracks.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
Mostly writers who pull in a lot of influences and quotations, for example Shostakovich, Schnittke, Zappa, John Zorn, Mike Patton etc... But there are lots more, like Acoustic Ladyland and the Japanese Death Jazz group Soil & "Pimp" Sessions. And always lots of Taraf de Haidouks.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
I reckon that if I need to say anything there is no point in writing the music in the first place. It should say it all.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest single, and for the future?
This is our first single, so hopefully it is going to introduce a lot of people to us. This year recording an album is the definite priority, also smashing it up with Acoustic Ladyland at Borderline is going to be amazing. They are one of our main influences and it's going to be a privilege to share a stage with them.

MORE>> www.myspace.com/deathrayband

 

CMU'S TIPS FOR 2009: CATHERINE AD
Catherine Anne Davies, or Catherine AD as she is known, releases her debut EP, 'Carry Your Heart', on 16 Feb. It's a tantalising taste of the extremely talented multi-instrumentalist's debut album, which is currently in production and will be out later this year. One of the Southbank Centre's Emerging Artists In Residence, Catherine is a refreshingly dark addition to the list of female singer-songwriters being tipped for success in 2009. With touches of Nick Cave and PJ Harvey in her sound, her voice pours smoothly out of her mouth with a similar confidence and assuredness of those influences, allowing herself to be aware that she's pretty good without slipping into arrogance. Check out the EP's lead track on her MySpace page and see how long you can resist her charms.

www.myspace.com/catherinead

 

 

ANGER AT MORE PINNACLE DELAYS AND LANDLORD STOCK CLAIMS
With numerous indie labels increasingly frustrated that they have CDs they could and should be selling locked in the warehouses of defunct distributor Pinnacle, there is anger at the news the landlords of one of those warehouses are trying to claim ownership of some of their stock in lieu of fifty grand of rent they are owed by the collapsed firm.

Many labels are still having to wait to get CDs back, even though they technically own the stock. There are both legal and logistical reasons for the delays - one big problem is that staff who knew their way around the warehouses are long gone so even when labels have permission to get their CDs it's hard for the skeleton staff who remain at Pinnacle bases to find them.

According to Music Week, the landlords of Pinnacle's facility in Swanley are trying to put a 'lien' on the stock held there - which basically means they're trying to claim ownership of it - in a bid to recoup some of the money they're owed. Such a lien would not, actually, be legal, because the stock is owned by the labels not the defunct distributor. Both the Association Of Independent Music and MCPS-PRS have stressed that is the case, and the good news is that Pinnacle's administrator, BDO Stoy Hayward, seem to agree.

Which means the landlords are unlikely to get their hands on the CDs, but there is a concern that the new legal action could further delay the return of the stock to affected labels - which, if you're a label who's run out of stock but who has 2000 units at Pinnacle and who has record shops on the phone trying to buy some off you, has gotta be very depressing.

Even more depressing is this. Also according to Music Week, the boss of AIM, Alison Wenham - her organisation having investigated the situation in some detail - is recommending that labels seriously consider cutting their losses and re-pressing CDs rather than wasting time negotiating with the administrators to get the return of old stock.

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VIRGIN GROUP WON'T HAVE TO PAY OUT OVER ZAVVI COLLAPSE
Good news for the Virgin Group, it looks likely it won't have to shell out millions to cover the debts of its former Megastore business Zavvi.

As previously reported, when Zavvi went into liquidation it was widely reported the retailer's former parent company had guaranteed its credit facility with Woolies owned distributor eUK after the management buyout that created the independent retail firm. When eUK itself went into administration it was reported that Zavvi was its biggest debtor, owing a reported £80 million (some reports reckoned more). As Zavvi itself started to crumble it was thought eUK's administrators, Deloitte, may soon be knocking on the doors of Richard Branson's Virgin Group asking for payment of the Zavvi debts it had guaranteed.

But according to Music Week, Zavvi's administrators Ernst & Young managed to negotiate its debts to eUK down to £40 million (which sounds like quite a big achievement, given the Virgin guarantee on those debts). Zavvi had £20 million in reserve to pay half that debt, and good sales over the Christmas period means there should be enough revenue to pay off the rest. Good news for Virgin. Less so for the record companies owed millions by eUK, who will presumably see a smaller pay out as a result of Zavvi's reduced account.

This is double good news for Branson and the Virgin Group really. First, they managed to get their brand name off the high street before the recession kicked in, and now they won't lose out because of Zavvi's collapse. The only members of the Virgin family who may as yet be affected by Zavvi's collapse are those who are employed to man the Virgin Mobile outlets that remain in many of the music seller's stores. It's thought that if Zavvi closes down completely Virgin will quietly close down those outlets too, stand-alone Virgin Mobile stores not really being viable at the moment.

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RAPPER BEATEN AND ROBBED IN LA
Rapper Bizzy Bone, a member of the recently reformed Grammy award winning hip hop group Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, was the victim of a robbery and brutal beating in Los Angeles last week, the LA Police Department have claimed. They say that Bone, real name Byron McCane, was on his way from a restaurant back to his hotel room at the city's Universal Hilton on 5 Jan when he was accosted by a gang of individuals who beat and choked their victim, as well as stealing all his jewellery.

One Marlo Jones, reportedly and somewhat ironically a contract employee of anti-gang organisation Unity One, has been charged with the assault, and Unity One have apparently terminated his employment whilst the case proceeds. He remains in custody, with bail set at $1.1m. Police are looking for further suspects, both male and female, that may have also participated in the crime.

Last month, the original line up of Bone Thugs-n-Harmony reunited after ten years, and are currently working on a new album.

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SNOOP DOGG DOES LINE OF HEADPHONES
Snoop Dogg has begun a new branch of merchandising, his own brand of headphones, produced in association with Skullcandy Inc.

Mr Dogg said in a statement: "The Snoop Dogg Skullcrusher is the hottest headphone comin' to a hood near you. I've been a fan of their products for years and I decided it was time to break bread with them. Our headphones are fly, affordable, and most importantly - bangin' like Niggaracci beats. Make sure to scoop a pair in Spring 2009 and be on the lookout for more Snoop Dogg/Skull Candy products, ya dig?!?"

Skullcandy boast that the headphones feature "shock-and-awe level of bass with 30mm neodymium magnetic speakers plus mini-sub woofers, allowing his listeners to take Snoop wherever they go".

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FIELDER-CIVIL FILES FOR DIVORCE
Look at that, with all those rumours about Amy Winehouse divorcing her husband, Blake Fielder-Civil, we all failed to consider the fact that he might actually make the first move. And now he has. The convicted thug and justice perverter is seeking to end the 18 month marriage on the grounds of adultery.

Fielder-Civil's lawyer Henri Brandman told reporters: "I can confirm that I have been instructed to commence divorce proceedings on the grounds of Amy's adultery".

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WHITE LIES FEAR HYPE MAY WRITE OFF ALBUM
White Lies are the best band who have ever existed and will almost certainly sell more records than the Beatles and The Stones combined. That's the sort of talk that currently have the very-hyped White Lies quaking in their boots. They're worried that with so many people talking about them, everybody might get bored of them before they have a chance to release their forthcoming debut album.

Drummer Jack Lawrence-Brown told BBC Newsbeat: "We're a bit anxious to not get written off. Not pigeon-holed before people have actually heard our album. I'm really glad people are seeing our potential - but I genuinely don't buy music based on reviews - I'll make my own opinion about it".

He then proceeded to hype up the band's album, saying: "For us we've already achieved what we wanted to. I know that's a weird thing to say as it's not even out but for us the making of the record was really quite a personal thing. We feel like we're in a good place. We didn't want to compromise anything in the recording of the songs. We avoid at all costs doing massive radio edits of songs and we don't write b-sides. Things like that mean staying true to yourself - doing what we felt would give us the best finished product when it came down to the album".

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LIL WAYNE PLANS ROCK ALBUM
According to reports, Lil Wayne has been inspired by Kanye West's decision to sing on his latest LP '808s & Heartbreak', and is planning to release a rock album. Friend and colleague, Canadian rapper Drake, has been quoted as saying: "Wayne's coming out with a new album. It's a rock album. A complete rock album. I have a song on there. It's something different in just that whole '808s & Heartbreak' [style], just throwing individuals off".

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NEW PET SHOP BOYS DUE IN MARCH
The new studio album from the Pet Shop Boys, 'Yes', will be out on 23 Mar, preceded by the single 'Love Etc' on 16 Mar. As previously reported, the duo are to receive the Outstanding Contribution Award at next month's BRIT Awards.

The album features collaborations with Johnny Marr and with Girls Aloud's production team Xenomania, and the album's tracklisting is as follows:

Love Etc.
All Over The World
Beautiful People
Did You See Me Coming?
Vulnerable
More Than A Dream
Building A Wall
King Of Rome
Pandemonium
The Way It Used To Be
Legacy

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EMI TO RE-RELEASE RADIOHEAD SINGLES
After the fuss they made about EMI releasing a greatest hits album last year, I'm sure Radiohead will be thrilled to learn that their former label is set to re-release twelve of the band's singles this year. Starting with the rare 'Drill' EP, each of the twelve singles will be released on 12" vinyl and will come with a sticker of the original CD single artwork, which sounds, er, sticky and artwork-y.

'Drill' will be released on 21 Apr, with the other releases following over the subsequent months. Here's the full line-up:

Drill EP
Creep
My Iron Lung
Just
Fake Plastic Trees
High And Dry
Street Spirit (Fade Out)
Paranoid Android
Karma Police
No Surprises
Pyramid Song
There There
2+2=5

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CONCHORDS TO RELEASE SONGS AFTER SHOWS
Musical comedy duo Flight Of The Conchords return to US TV screens in the US this Sunday, with the second series of their show, and fans will be able to buy the songs that appear in it the very next day.

Songs from each of the 10 episodes in the new series will be made available via iTunes the day after airing, with the 10 songs from the show and an additional five songs being compiled into an album after the series finishes in April.

Head of A&R at Sub Pop, the band's label, Tony Kiewel told Billboard: "More than one of [the new songs] leans on a 70s soul sound. I've also heard this choir-y sort of thing, a Meat Loaf-y sort of thing and a crazy top 40-type jam".

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ISAAC HAYES REISSUE
Seminal 1971 Isaac Hayes album 'Black Moses' is to be reissued next month, as is his 1976 disco LP 'Juicy Fruit'. Stax Records, the late soul legend's original label, will put both the remastered records out on 24 Feb in the US. It will be the first time that 'Juicy Fruit' will have been available on the CD format.

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WAR CHILD ANNOUNCE HEROES TRACKLISTING
War Child have announced the complete tracklisting for their previously reported charity LP 'Heroes', which, you may remember, sees some of music's big names selecting their own favourite songs and nominating a younger artist to cover it.

The tracklisting for the album, to be released by Parlophone on 16 Feb, is as follows:

1. Beck (Bob Dylan: Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat)
2. Scissor Sisters (Roxy Music: Do The Strand)
3. Lily Allen (The Clash: Straight To Hell)
4. Duffy (Paul McCartney: Live And Let Die)
5. Elbow (U2: Running To Stand Still)
6. TV On The Radio (David Bowie: Heroes)
7. Hot Chip (Joy Division: Transmission)
8. The Kooks (The Kinks: Victoria)
9. Estelle (Stevie Wonder: Superstition)
10. Rufus Wainwright (Brian Wilson: Wonderful/ Song For Children)
11. Peaches (Iggy Pop: Search And Destroy)
12. The Hold Steady (Bruce Springsteen: Atlantic City)
13. The Like (Elvis Costello: You Belong To Me)
14. Yeah Yeah Yeahs (The Ramones: Sheena Is A Punk Rocker)
15. Franz Ferdinand (Blondie: Call Me)

Profits will, of course, support the charity's work with children living in war zones. Album contributor Guy Garvey of Elbow commented: "War Child do exactly what it says on the tin. These kids shouldn't be in such circumstances in the first place, but they are, so thank god someone's doing something about it".

Paul McCartney adds: "I have been supporting War Child since 1995. Their work with children in war zones saves lives and their work with those who take decisions that help them to do something about it saves even more lives. The breadth of talent on this project is amazing; it's great that so many people gave their time, energy and support to this initiative. I urge everyone to support War Child".

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US CITY STAGES RALLY CALLING FOR AC/DC TO PLAY THERE
A radio DJ in the Illinois city of Peoria held a rally this weekend in a bid to persuade AC/DC to play a gig in the city. Angus Young et al haven't played Peoria since 1983, possibly because they pissed off local officials at that gig by setting off cannons.

In fact it has long been assumed they'd been banned from returning to the city as a result of the stunt. But WIXO-FM presenter Matt Bahan says he's been investigating and the ban is an urban myth and doesn't exist. And the fact that the city's mayor reportedly showed up at the 100-strong rally of AC/DC fans, seemingly to lend them his support, suggests that might be true.

Bahan told local paper the Journal Star: "We're going to prove to AC/DC that we're out of our minds. We want them here, and I think it's due time that they come back". In addition to the 100 people who showed up to the rally - many dressed in an AC/DC stylee - over a thousand people have signed Bahan's petition. The band themselves are yet to respond.

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NO READING/LEEDS TICKETS ON SALE YET
Promoters of the Reading and Leeds festivals issued a statement yesterday stressing that no tickets for the two events are currently on sale. They were responding to the arrival of the sort of official looking www.readingfestival2009.com and www.leedsfestival2009.com websites which claim to be selling tickets for the festivals.

A spokesman for promoters Festival Republic told CMU that these sites are "not official and have no access to tickets for this year's event. Line-up and ticketing details for the event will be announced in due course and Festival Republic advice is, as ever, to only purchase tickets via official links at the event sites via www.seetickets.com".

The proper Reading/Leeds websites are www.readingfestival.com and www.leedsfestival.com respectively. Bogus ticket offers for the Reading and Leeds festivals were among those investigating by the authorities last year.

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ALBUM REVIEW: A Camp - Colonia (Reveal Records)
Like that trusty garment of clothing in my wardrobe, The Cardigans have always remained a comfortable old favourite, with 1995's classic 'Life' LP ever lurking somewhere on the remote edges of my CD collection. A predictable simile, I agree, but a true one, so it stands up. Like the dependable old cardi, the band has the knack of going with everything from anguish to anger. And so it was with considerable enthusiasm that I received A Camp's second effort, the aromatically entitled 'Colonia'. The band began many moons ago with the meeting of two great Swedish musical minds, Nina Perrson, lead singer of The Cardigans and former figure skater Niclas Frisk, member of the recently reunited Atomic Swing. Together, driven by their mutual affection for Americana, the Swedes produced their country-tinged self titled debut album. Though well received by many, A Camp was allowed to get dusty on the top shelf while Nina was busy with Gran Turismo and Niclas explored gospel music, of all things. 'Colonia' sees the pair taking the project to new, more delicate ground. They are guided along the way by the indie master hand of Mark Linkous of Sparklehorse's careful production and Nina's husband Nathan Larson has also been added to the payroll, while ex Smashing Pumpkin James Iha and Joan Wassser of Joan As Police Woman are also on board as guests. Lead single 'Stronger Than Jesus', a string of vivid images, is perfect, inoffensive pop that feels like it has been excavated from a different time. The album remains a fairly low-key affair throughout, but the heady perfume of Eau de Colonia lingers in the airwaves far after Persson has left them. MB
Release Date: 2 Feb
Press Contact: Triad Publicity

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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CHINA WEST SUSPECT OPERATIONS
The US promoter behind China West Entertainment, which staged concerts featuring major Western artists in China, including gigs from James Brown, Kylie Minogue and the Black Eyed Peas, has announced he is suspending the firm's operations. His reason for doing so isn't 100% clear.

Promoter Steve Sybesma launched China West in 2004, and as well as stand alone artist concerts also produced major events, including the half-time show at Slam Nation, the first NBA basketball game in China, and was involved in the opening ceremony for the Special Olympics, which took place in Shanghai in 2007.

Confirming he was suspending China West's operations, Sybesma told reporters: "My experience with China West and in China has not only been rich and rewarding, but also another unforgettable and exciting chapter of my life. Most of all, I have enjoyed living and working in Shanghai during the past five years, and being able to witness the amazing transformation of one of the world's major cities. I truly regret suspending operations, but thank all of those who supported our efforts".

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AGENCY GROUP MAN GOES TO LIVE NATION
The boss of the US division of booking agents The Agency Group has announced he is taking up a new job at Live Nation. Steve Herman will be President Of Artist Services at the live music conglom.

Confirming the new appointment, Live Nation's CEO Of Global Music, Jason Garner, told reporters: "Steve's vast experience serving artists as concert promoter, artist agent and executive is a valuable addition to our team".

The Agency Group's global chief Neil Warnock added: "Steve Herman has clearly contributed to the continuing growth of the Agency Group, and we wish him well in his new position".

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NEW STATE SIGN DISTRIBUTION DEAL WITH EMI
Dance music independent New State Entertainment, who previously used the now defunct Pinnacle as its distributor, has announced a new distribution deal with EMI.

New State's Tim Binns told CMU: "When Pinnacle went into administration it was a real shock and we had to move fast to tie up a deal for our 2009 and beyond release schedule. With 15 albums, both artist and compilation, on board for next year alone we knew we needed the flexibility of being an independent but have the weight of a major to back us up at retail. We saw all the main players and EMI with their newly initiated third party distribution service offered the best fit. We retain 100% indie status but have major UK sales & distribution support".

EMI's SVP of Sales And Commercial Development, Matt Crosswaite, added: "Music Services is a division of EMI launched last month to offer artists and independent labels a broad range of services - from manufacture, digital and physical distribution to revenue generation such as sync and licensing or brand management. We're delighted that New State has chosen EMI and we look forward to working with Tim, Mike, Tom and all the team there".

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NARM SIGN UP TO ERA'S MP3 LOGO
America's National Association Of Recording Merchandisers, the trade body for the US music retail sector, has adopted the "look, I'm an MP3" logo being used by their UK counterparts, the Entertainment Retailer's Association, that helps consumers navigate all the digital music offers out there.

As previously reported, ERA launched the MP3 logo last year, and they encourage digital music sellers who sell music in the digital rights management free generic file format to post it on their sites. Because MP3s play on the vast majority of digital music devices they are seen as the most desirable file format for consumers, and the logo aims to give music fans assurance they are getting their downloads in MP3 and not another DRMed or less compatible format.

NARM yesterday announced it would also encourage its members to use the logo. The trade body's President, Jim Donio, told reporters: "We applaud our sister organization ERA for stepping up to deliver an important message to music fans around the world. NARM has long felt that in order for the music industry to achieve the full potential of digital delivery, consumers must be encouraged by the promise of compatibility".

The boss of ERA, Kim Bayley, added: "NARM's support of the MP3 100% Compatible campaign is a significant milestone in our bid to help music fans make sense of digital music. We believe MP3 has the ability to unleash a boom for digital music".

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CHINA CLOSES 90 WEBSITES AS CRACKDOWN CONTINUES
China yesterday announced it has now closed 90 websites as part of its previously reported campaign to "eradicate vulgar and pornographic" content from the internet. As previously reported, the Chinese government announced last week that it was stepping up its policing of the internet, naming 33 websites who it said were guilty of distributing inappropriate content, including major search engines Google and Baidu.

Although officially an attack on porn sites, some fear the new resources and powers given to net regulators by the Chinese government will be used to target websites who are critical of the authorities. Some say the government is trying to pre-empt plans by dissidents to use the twentieth anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre to step up their activity, with the increasingly popular internet seen as a valuable tool to anti-government groups. Officials are also reportedly keen to limit the spread of a document called Charter 08, which calls for multi-party elections and more freedom of speech.

Those who claim the Chinese government's real motives are political rather than anti-porn point to the closure of prominent Chinese blog Bullog, which has become a hub for liberal debate in the country.

Rebecca MacKinnon of the University Of Hong Kong, an expert on China and the internet no less, told reporters: "While the publicly stated purpose of cracking down in the past week has been porn and internet smut, we have also seen the shutdown of Bullog and a number of [similar] websites. From talking to people who work in web companies here it's pretty clear they feel under increased pressure to control political content as much as smut ... I'm being told that all of those companies are beefing up their staff who are employed to police content and the software and other mechanisms to flag content which gets them in trouble".

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BBC BOSS IN FAVOUR OF FOUR/FIVE MERGER
The boss of the BBC has said that a merger between Channel 4 and Five should not be ruled out as a way of helping public service broadcasting in the commercial sector add up. As much previously reported, OfCom is currently looking into the public service obligations of the terrestrial commercial broadcasters - ITV, C4 and Five - and whether said obligations should be reduced or funded in a non-commercial way given the increased competition in the advertising market and the impact it is having on the traditional TV channel's revenues.

State-owned Channel 4 is the biggest issue because public service programming is its reason for being, and management there say they need help maintaining those services because advertising and sponsorship alone is not enough. The simplest solution, favoured by some at C4, would be to give the commercial channel a cut of the licence fee money. Needless to say the BBC don't like that idea at all, and have been busy suggesting other ways C4 could generate new revenues or cut their costs.

The proposal of merging state-owned Channel 4 and privately-owned Five has been mooted on a number of occasions - the logic being the merger would cut the costs of both parties - and if C4 shunted its mainstream shows onto Five it would create a hugely profitable commercial channel that could subsidise C4's public service programming. However, there would be a number of challenges to such a merger, not least possible Competition Commission concerns. Media analysts Enders recently said they thought that the Commission would have a number of concerns of the dominance of a merged C4/Five in the commercial TV market.

But writing in the Financial Times, BBC boss Mark Thompson, obviously a fan of all proposals that would ensure his organisation kept all the licence fee money, said: "Consolidation [of Channel 4 and five] could offer the prospect of both short and long-term benefits: immediate cost savings and an increase in scale in key markets from advertising sales to programme acquisition, but also the chance for a smaller number of larger players to focus on credible and affordable digital plans. If the goal is sustainable PSB beyond the BBC in the long term, consolidation may be part of the solution".

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ZEE ARRIVES ON SKY
Zee Radio, the radio version of Zee TV, which positions itself as "the UK's only all-Bollywood radio station", has expanded its reach by taking a channel on Sky. It appeared on the satellite broadcaster's electronic programme guide yesterday. Zee was previously only available on DAB and AM in London. Zee Radio's content head, Sangraam Marathe, told reporters: "We are continuously reviewing our strategies to make Zee Radio available to as many listeners as possible. After a fantastic first year on air in London, we are now going national by launching on Sky Digital, the same home for our other Zee TV channels".

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NO MORE LATE NIGHTS FOR RAJAR PRESS RESPONSE WRITERS
Radio ratings body RAJAR has announced it will make its quarterly listening figure reports available to stations four hours earlier. The quarterly reports are officially published on Thursdays at 7am, but radio firms get their copies the day before so they can prepare those "yes, we're 5% down, but really that means we're doing awfully well" press releases. Previously the radio stations got their copies at 5.30pm on the Wednesday, but moving forward they'll be issued at 1.30pm.

It's thought the time shift has come about because much of the commercial radio sector is now in private hands, rather than being owned by PLC companies trading on the London Stock Exchange. The reports were previously published as the LSE closed for the day, meaning anyone with insider access to them couldn't do some sneaky share trading pre-empting the share price rise or fall a good or bad set of listening figures could result in (despite the figures being, ultimately, a bit made up). With both Global Radio and Bauer Radio, the two big boys of British radio, both in private hands, that is no longer so big an issue. Unless the big ratings story surrounds UTV Radio, which is a PLC, but that's not likely.

The next set of RAJARS is due to be published on Thursday 29 Jan, with advance copies going to the radio stations the previous lunchtime.

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US RADIO STATIONS UNSURE ABOUT BRITNEY CENSORSHIP
Radio stations in the US are in a bit of a flap about the next Britney Spears single, 'If You Seek Amy'. On its own, the title may seem innocent (Spears has previously claimed it's a reference to Kevin Smith's film, 'Chasing Amy'), but programmers are nonetheless unsure about whether it should be cut from the song when broadcast.

As previously reported, the problem lies in the fact that it's not quite as innocent as it seems. When placed in the context of the song's chorus line, it reveals itself to be a slightly playground attempt to be naughty. On the single, Spears sing: "But all of the boys and all of the girls are begging to if you seek Amy". Geddit? F-U-C-K me. Clever, huh?

Cincinnati station Q102's programme director Patti Marshall told MTV: "It's okay to put in on an album, have fun with it, but we're publicly owned, you know? We have a responsibility to the public ... you put this ... out and act like we're all fuddy-duddies, like we're trying to make moral judgments. It's not about us. It's about the mom in the minivan with her eight year old".

And that's the problem. Some people are going to be offended by it. But when the song's lyrics aren't explicitly rude, do you leave it and risk some listeners turning off, or censor it and draw attention to something that's technically okay. The same situation arose in 2005 with Black Eyed Peas' 'Don't Phunk With My Heart', which some Americans heard as being rude, even when it wasn't. Because of that, some stations used a radio edit which changed "phunk" to "mess", while others let it pass.

KIIS FM Los Angeles programme director, John Ivey said: "It's a potential issue for every station. I'm certain that I would run it by my legal department first. My first job is to protect [the station's] license. ... It's better to be safe than sorry". He added: "[Britney's label, Jive] might also be just floating it out there to see if they can stir things up a bit".

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TOTAL ROCK WORLD ALBUM CHART
It's this week's Total Rock World Album Chart, as counted down on Total Rock last weekend - www.totalrock.com. New entries and re-entries marked with a *.

1. AC/DC - Black Ice (Sony/Columbia)
2. Nickelback - Dark Horse (Warner/Roadrunner)
3. Guns n Roses - Chinese Democracy (Universal/Geffen)
4. Fall Out Boy - Folie A Deux (Universal/Island)
5. Metallica - Death Magnetic (Universal/Mercury)
6. Kid Rock - Rock - N Roll Jesus (Warner/Atlantic)
7. Linkin Park - Road To Revolution (Warner Bros)
8. Slipknot - All Hope Is Gone (Warner/Roadrunner)
9. Rise Against - Appeal To Reason (Universal/Geffen)
10. Linkin Park - Minutes To Midnight (Warner Bros)
11. Disturbed - Indestructible (Warner/Reprise)
12. Status Quo - Pictures 40 Years Of Hits (Universal)
13. Mudvayne - The New Game (Vibrant)
14. Guns n Roses - Greatest Hits (Universal/Geffen)
15. Nickelback - All The Right Reasons (Warner/Roadrunner)
16. AC/DC - Back In Black (Sony/Columbia)
17. Hinder - Take It To The Limit (UMG)
18. Led Zeppelin - Mothership (Warner/Atlantic)*
19. The Offspring - Rise And Fall, Rage And Grace (Sony Music)
20. Buckcherry - Black Butterfly (Eleven Seven Music)*

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FERGIE MARRIES
Black Eyed Pea Fergie, aka Stacy Ferguson, has married long term actor boyfriend Josh Duhamel, according to reports, which say that her management confirmed that the pair wed at the Church Estates Vineyards in Malibu on Saturday. So there you go.

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CHARLOTTE CHURCH BABY BORN
Charlotte Church has given birth at her Glamorgan home to her second child, an as yet unnamed baby boy. Her first child, Ruby, was born just fifteen months ago. A message posted on the singer's website reads: "Charlotte has literally just this minute phoned us to let us know that she gave birth to a little boy today. He was born just after midnight at her and Gavin's home with Gavin in attendance at the birth".

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LEONA IS RUBBISH LIVE, SAYS COWELL
No, not really. Though Simon Cowell is reportedly holding back on letting Leona Lewis embark on a world tour because he doesn't feel she is confident enough to stand up and sing in front of thousands of people.

A source told The Sun: "Although Simon believes in Leona as a world-class solo singer, he still feels she does not have enough confidence to play to large crowds on her own. There is certainly a real art to getting the audience in the palm of your hand as entertainers as Mariah, Robbie Williams and Elton John can do. Leona is Simon's little baby and he is very aware of how shy she is".

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STOP LISTENING TO KANYE YOU INCONSIDERATE BASTARDS
Kanye West thinks this making music lark is all well and good, but wishes fewer people listened to what he comes up with because he struggles with the responsibility being popular brings.

He told Vibe: "I wanna make popular music, but I want less fans. I want the freedom of having less fans. It's like the freedom of having less money. If you have less money, you have less responsibility".

It's true, consider the responsibilities of Paris Hilton compared to, say, an air traffic controller. No contest.

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PARIS JAIL HORROR
Speaking about Paris Hilton and her many responsibilities, the, er, singer has apparently penned a song for her forthcoming second album warning of the horrors of going to prison when you didn't even do anything and there are actual proper criminals out on the streets and it's all the just waste of tax-payers' money and just not fair. The lyrics are based on her 23 days inside in June 2007 for violating probation on a drink-driving charge.

Lyrics from the song, entitled 'Jailhouse Baby', include: "Like a public enemy, make a mockery out of me / How dangerous can I be?, I'm just a jailhouse baby" and "Still haunted by nightmares, Why's the system so unfair? / But I'm stronger than before, No I'm no longer scared".

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