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Form 696 revised a bit
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Skip Miller dies
Reunions & Splits
Public Image reunite for tour
Bee Gees to reform
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Cheryl Cole names single and album
Annie Mac presents new compilation
Amorphous Androgynous announce new compilation
Boyle already beating Houston with pre-sales
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Arctic Monkeys UK and Ireland tour
Hot Rats tour dates
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Album review: Various Artists - Apollo: Past, Present, Future (Apollo/R&S)
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Beggars expand into Chinese market
WeGotTickets launch new portal for voluntary sector
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Labels sign up to digital distribution platform
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Total Rock World Album Chart
And finally...
Lennon would have approved of Rock Star
Elbow don't really tip Friendly Fires to win Mercury Prize
David Bowie and the spider from Malaysia
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TUESDAY 8TH SEPTEMBER


LED BIB
Formed in 2003 by drummer/composer Mark Holub, Led Bib have frequently been described as "the future of British jazz" in recent years. Their third album, 'Sensible Shoes', released earlier this year on Cuneiform Records, brought them to wider attention when it picked up a Mercury Prize nomination. You can find out how they fare when the overall winner is announced tonight, and then catch them live all over the country between now and the end of the year. We spoke to Mark Holub to ask our Same Six Questions.
 
Q1 How did you start out making music?
I originally started playing the clarinet as a child in school, mainly because I wanted to play the saxophone and the school music teacher thought I should do clarinet because when I blew through the sax it made no sound. It wasn't until I was about 12 or 13 that I found the drums and then I started thinking about being a musician.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
In some ways, our last album! We did a limited edition live CD and it sort of woke me up to the difference between our previous studio albums and our live sound, so I wanted to create something which had the best of both. Aside from that though, the album is inspired by life and everything that contains, from sitting next to a drunk man on the Victoria Line to a beautiful sunset.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
Usually I have something in my head, a melody, a groove, a concept and I sit and work at it on the piano. I then score it out for everybody and bring it to rehearsal. When everybody starts playing it they add their own colours to it, which always makes the track much more than I could have imagined while I was writing it.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
Loads, it's almost too hard to answer. A start would be John Zorn, Ornette Coleman and Charles Mingus, though there'd be many more too. But probably more than anyone else, for Led Bib, possibly strangely, I am influenced by the other guys in the band. I suppose that for me the most exciting thing about them is they all bring their own influences, be that Donny Hathaway or Kraftwerk, and we somehow mould that together into a coherent sound. Led Bib is all five of us, it's not a bandleader and four musicians.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
Approach it with an open mind! Listening to music you aren't used to can be challenging, but it's about exposure, you just need to give it a chance. Led Bib is an exciting and fun group, give us a try... you will like it (we hope)!

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
Well, I suppose a Mercury Prize nomination would have been a good ambition, but we've got that! A knighthood, perhaps? In all seriousness, just having one more person listening to us and enjoying it is a pretty good achievement for me. As for the future, well, we will be touring a lot over the last bit of 2009, working on new music and hopefully recording stuff sometime in the not too distant future.

MORE>> www.ledbib.com and www.myspace.com/ledbib

 
MONSTERS OF FOLK
It's inevitable that comparisons will be drawn between Monsters Of Folk and the original folk-rock supergroup, Travelling Wilburys, with the Monsters line-up consisting of Bright Eyes/Conor Oberst, Yim Yames of My Morning Jacket, M Ward and famed producer Mike Mogis, who handily produces the group's material. Three tracks are up already, led by the excellent stomp of 'Say Please', which nurtures the talents of the entire band and sounds like, yep, a Travelling Wilbury's track, though minus a Jeff Lynne string section. It's woozy throwback folk-rock and, along with the other two tracks streaming, promises much for the future of this project, particularly when they reach Europe for touring in November.

www.myspace.com/monstersoffolk

 



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FORM 696 REVISED A BIT
The Metropolitan Police have revised their controversial Form 696 removing the most contentious question, the one about music genre.

As previously reported, the Met introduced the Form 696 following changes in UK licensing laws, which gave new powers to local authorities. Now used by all London councils, the form has come under increased criticism as the impact of the 2003 Licensing Act has been reviewed by political types this year. Many in the live sector say the form is an example of how the live music licensing process has become too bureaucratic, while some have expressed concern as to what happens to all the personal information about participating musicians that the form demands to know.

But most contentious was the question that asked about the genre category an event might fall under. It was thought that this information might be used by officials to make assumptions about the racial make up of a potential audience, and that that information may lead to prejudicial decisions being made regarding granting a licence, or not.

That question led to a letter signed by fifty key people being sent to the Equalities And Human Rights Commission, and it seems it might have been that letter that persuaded the Met to drop the genre question from its form; though they say that the question has actually been removed because an internal review of 696 has shown there is little correlation between genre type and events where trouble occurs.

While the genre question was the most contentious bit, cross-sector trade body UK Music - probably the most vocal opponents of the form - say they maintain the viewpoint that the form should be scrapped, pointing to that parliamentary select committee which said the same thing.

The trade body issued this statement yesterday: "The Metropolitan Police review process for this risk assessment form has not been conducted in a fully transparent way, and we would like to make it clear that UK Music has not been part of this review. UK Music stands by our position in support of the recommendations of the Select Committee for Culture, Media and Sport. Form 696 should not be amended. It should be scrapped".

While admitting that some aspects of the form had been expressed in a "clumsy" way, the head of the Met's Clubs & Vice Unit, Chief Superintendent Richard Martin, said he didn't believe the form to be discriminatory, adding that his department simply wanted to know what "followings" might attend a gig or club event, and whether there was the potential for any confrontations between competing "followings". According to the BBC, Martin told a briefing on the form revisions: "If you have a series of people playing in a nightclub, each will have their own following. Sometimes those followings don't get on".

While many live music types still oppose the 696 form, Music Week reported that at the aforementioned briefing some promoters said they appreciated the opportunity to share information with police about audiences so to pre-empt any potential conflicts.

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TURKEY BAN TIMBERLAKE VID
Good old Justin Timberlake has got censors in Turkey a little bit flustered. The country's Radio & TV Supreme Council has banned the video to accompany his collaboration with Ciara because it's just too damn raunchy. Officials don't like seeing Ciara licking Timberlake's ear. To be honest with you, I'm not sure any of us do, but we've not banned it as a result.

According to Turkey's Milliyet newspaper, the Council reached its decision to ban the promo from Turkish TV because it "contains sexual outfits, dancing and scenes that are contrary to the development of children and youth and morality in general".

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SKIP MILLER DIES
Alvin 'Skip' Miller, a former President of Motown Records and EVP at RCA Records, died of a heart attack on Friday, aged 62.

Miller had a 38 year career in the US music industry, working his way up the hierarchy at Motown, starting off in the promotions department and working his way up to President. After leaving Motown he spent some time as a EVP at RCA Records. More recently he headed up his own music company Panda Entertainment Group, a talent management agency and music consultancy.

Funeral arrangements are to be announced.

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PUBLIC IMAGE REUNITE FOR TOUR
So this is interesting in a kind of intriguing/horrifying way. John Lydon's post-Sex Pistols band, Public Image Ltd, will reunite for a tour to mark the 30th anniversary of their 'Metal Box' album later this year. Although Lydon will be the only original member of the band on board. He will be joined by guitarist Lu Edmonds, former Pop Group drummer Bruce Smith (both of whom played with the band in the late eighties) and bassist Scott Firth.

The decision to resurrect the band was apparently inspired by Lydon's father's death in 2008 and his brother's recent battle with cancer. Lydon told BBC 6 Music: "It was a very harsh time for me emotionally and I started paying attention to 'Death Disco', the record I wrote about my mother dying. I've always been wrapped around some sort of emotional tragedy through PiL, but also great joy. It's a chance to express every single human emotion possible. Although the Pistols is a most fantastic band to be a member of, there's more going on in me than that".

Talking up the shows, he said: "Anyone who's ever been to a PiL gig knows that there won't be anything that you're familiar with. It just isn't like that. There's a whole wash of new material that I haven't used yet but I will be doing some kindly drop-ins to some PiL anthems".

The dates are:

15 Dec: Birmingham, Academy
16 Dec: Leeds, Academy
18 Dec: Glasgow, Academy
19 Dec: Manchester, Academy
21 Dec: London, Brixton Academy

For more info, go to www.pilofficial.com

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BEE GEES TO REFORM
The surviving members of The Bee Gees, Barry and Robin Gibb, will reform in the near future for a series of live dates.

Robin Gibb told the BBC that he and his brother had "got through the breakwater of emotions" following the death of his twin, Maurice, in 2003 and were "getting back together again as we speak".

No further details have yet been released, but Barry and Robin have previously said that if they did perform together again, they would not use the Bee Gees name.

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CHERYL COLE NAMES SINGLE AND ALBUM
Cheryl Cole has announced the name of her debut album, and the first single that will be taken from it. The album will be called 'Three Words' and will be released on 26 Oct, while the single, 'Fight For This Love', will arrive the week before on 19 Oct.

We've been trying to guess what the three words in the album title relate to. Is 'the vocals on that single are so processed it really could be anyone singing' three words?

Speaking of which, you can listen to a clip of the single here.

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ANNIE MAC PRESENTS NEW COMPILATION
Annie Mac will release a new two disc compilation, cleverly titled 'Annie Mac Presents', via Island next month.

Describing its contents, she says: "The first CD is an hour of more peak time stuff. It's indicative of a typical DJ set for me, starting off a bit bouncy and fun and then getting a little harder and ending in dubstep. CD two is for when you get home from the club at whatever o'clock in the morning. It's got a gorgeous mix of Florence And The Machine by the very talented Leo Zero and some lovely Balearic dubstep from Caspa and Martyn and Cooly G, plus some bands that I like".

The Annie Mac Presents tour will also be back in October and November. For full details go to www.anniemacpresents.com. The album is out on 26 Oct.

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AMORPHOUS ANDROGYNOUS ANNOUNCE NEW COMPILATION
Amorphous Androgynous, aka Future Sound Of London's Garry Cobain and Brian Dougans, have announced their second compilation of psychedelia, 'A Monstrous Psychedelic Bubble Exploding In Your Mind Vol. 2 - Pagan Love Vibrations', which will be released on 26 Oct via Porcupine/Platipus Records. The first volume was ace, so this is definitely something to be excited about. Be excited now.

To celebrate the release, Amorphous Androgynous are putting on an excellent-sounding show at Matter. The guys themselves will headline, joined by a certain Noel Gallagher (returning the favour after that amazing 20 minute five part remix of Oasis' 'Falling Down' the AA guys did), with more live sets by Comus, Hawkwind, Cranium Pie and Nick Nicely & The Lives United, as well as DJ sets from Andy Votel and Gaz Cobain with Sitar Freakout.

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BOYLE ALREADY BEATING HOUSTON WITH PRE-SALES
Susan Boyle is set to invade our collective consciousness before Christmas with the release of her debut album, and if Amazon pre-orders are anything to go by, interest in the Scottish warbler's long player might match that in her original 'Britian's Got Talent' appearance. Apparently Boyle's record 'I Dreamed A Dream' is already outselling Whitney Houston just on pre-sales, and she is way ahead of other November releases that Amazon users are able to pre-order now. So, that's lovely.

Meanwhile, a source has told The Sun that the 'BGT' runner up insisted a cover of Madonna's 1995 song 'You'll See' be included on her debut album, it seemingly being a response to all the talent contest judges who did her down over the years. Said source says: "It's a song she has loved for years. She sang it at auditions for TV shows and music contests when she used to be cruelly turned away by people. At the end, when she was sometimes reduced to tears, she used to say 'You'll see'. And she's proof she can do it now as one of the most famous women in the world". So, that's lovely.

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MUSE DISCUSS HOMETOWN GIGS
Muse bassist Chris Wolstenholme has been talking to the BBC about the band's hometown shows last week, describing them as "bizarre". As previously reported, the band played two shows at The Den resort in Teignmouth on Friday and Saturday to 14,400 per night.

Wolstenholme told the BBC after the first gig: "It has been something we've talked about for a long time. The idea just came up when we were finishing the album. It felt like the right time to do this. It is bizarre, it really is weird, I think the strangest thing was coming off stage getting in a car and five minutes after walking through my front door. I was walking around my kitchen last night thinking, 'This is very weird, what do I do now?' I was walking around my kitchen thinking 'This is the oddest thing I've ever done in my life'. Part of it felt like a normal gig but then you look up and you see the pier, there's like a little amusement arcade on there and places I went as a kid. It's really strange seeing all these familiar landmarks".

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ARCTIC MONKEYS UK AND IRELAND TOUR
Arctic Monkeys have announced tour dates for the UK and Ireland in November. Tickets go on sale on Friday.

Tour dates:

13 Nov: Liverpool, Echo Arena
14 Nov: Sheffield Arena
16 Nov: Newcastle, Metro Arena
18 Nov: Wembley Arena
20 Nov: Birmingham, NIA
21 Nov: Manchester, MEN Arena
22 Nov: Nottingham, Trent FM Arena
24 Nov: Glasgow, SECC
25 Nov: Belfast, The Odyssey
26 Nov: Dublin, The O2

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HOT RATS TOUR DATES
Supergrass side-project Hot Rats have announced some tour dates to coincide with the release of their debut single, a double A-side featuring covers of Gang Of Four's 'Damaged Goods' and Beastie Boys' '(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party!)', on 12 Oct.

Tour dates:

11 Oct: Glasgow, King Tuts
12 Oct: Leeds, Cockpit 2
13 Oct: Manchester, Roadhouse
15 Oct: London, Hoxton Bar & Kitchen
16 Oct: Oxford, Academy 2
17 Oct: Bristol, Thekla
18 Oct: Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
24 Oct: Brighton, Coalition

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ALBUM REVIEW: Various Artists - Apollo: Past, Present, Future (Apollo/R&S)
Apollo was one of the most interesting labels for electronic music in the 90s, producing ambient, electronica and experimental output as the sister to dance label R&S. Reignited last year, both labels will be (digitally) reissuing their back catalogue and this compilation serves as a timely reminder of what made Apollo a reliable source of quality back in its day. Rather than a definitive history of the label, 'Past Present And Future' works more as a sampler, giving you a taster of the label's horizontal aesthetic. Featuring classic ambient tracks from the likes of Aphex Twin, Biosphere and Golden Girls (with the lustrous David Morley remix of 'Kinetic') alongside lesser known talents (Mark Van Hoen contributes three lush, otherworldly tracks under his Locust guise), the compilation also showcases newer material as well as some tracks (Underworld's 'Sola Sistim' being the best; the drab indie of Pinback being the worst) from outside the label, chosen by compiler and label owner Renaat Vandepapeliere himself. The three new tracks meanwhile all sound like they could have been released at any point in the last decade and a half but offer up intriguing possibilities of what the future might hold for Apollo, despite each being frustratingly short in length. By no means a faultless compilation then, but a welcome release nonetheless. MS
Physical release: 14 Sep
Press contact: Darling Dept [all]

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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SONY OFFICES RAIDED BY MEXICAN POLICE
Sony Music say they are "surprised and disappointed" that their Mexican offices were raided by the local authorities following a dispute with singer Alejandro Fernández, one of Latin music's biggest stars.

Fernandez had a ten year relationship with Sony in Mexico, but recently signed a new deal with Universal after his seven album contract with Sony came to an end. There seems to be some disagreement over the ownership of the master recordings made during the time Fernandez was signed to Sony, especially of recordings never released, and also of Sony's rights to repackage past recordings and release new albums featuring old work.

Fernandez's people seemingly got particularly edgy when Sony announced its intent to release a new album of old recordings to compete with the singer's first new album for Universal.

Fernandez's management say they issued Sony with a cease and desist letter in relation to their re-release plans and, when they didn't comply, they went to the Federal Court in Mexico City. That court claim led to federal police searching Sony's Mexico premises and, seemingly, seizing over 6000 CDs and other materials relating to Fernandez.

Responding to the police raid, Sony said it was "surprised and disappointed" the Mexican courts had approved such action, adding that the Fernandez recordings in its possession were "totally authorised" by their past contract with the singer, and concluding: "We trust that the Mexican courts will confirm our rights as soon as possible".

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BEGGARS EXPAND INTO CHINESE MARKET
Beggars Group has announced deals that will enable it to properly enter the Chinese market, which is sort of exciting.

The London-based indie will release physical product in China through two local labels - Jingwen and Hi-Note - while their catalogue will be available digitally through a service called we3.cn. The new venture will also see a special Beggars website being launched for Mandarin speakers, and moves to get Beggars-signed artists to play in the country. The Chinese expansion has been spearheaded by Beijing-based music consultancy Outdustry.

Confirming the move, Beggars digital chief Simon Wheeler told CMU: "We've witnessed there's a vibrant music scene within China and awareness of music is developing fast so it will be a challenging market for us to work in. We're confident that by bringing our artists into the market and building awareness for our label, we'll be in a good position to take advantage of whatever opportunities arise".

Outdustry's Ed Peto added: "The Chinese music market requires radical thinking and a real sense of adventure, two qualities which Beggars has proved to have in spades. The development of Beggars China is a pioneering project and we here at Outdustry are looking forward to helping this take shape".

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WEGOTTICKETS LAUNCH NEW PORTAL FOR VOLUNTARY SECTOR
Independent ticketing types WeGotTickets have launched a new ticketing and listings portal in association with Making Music, an umbrella organisation for voluntary music groups. The site will, I think, advertise and sell tickets for events being organised by groups affiliated to organisations affiliated to Making Music, with some of the profits being passed back to the Making Music organisation.

Confirming the new venture, WeGotTickets co-founder Dave Newton told CMU: "A substantial proportion of our existing client-base of 3000 venues and promoters work at the grass-roots level in their respective sector - be that contemporary rock/alternative music, folk, jazz, comedy or theatre. And so the opportunity to connect our service to the voluntary music sector is something we are relishing. Our proven client and customer support track record coupled with our marketing expertise will enhance the offering of the Making Music members even further".

Making Music's Head Of Membership Services, Sarah Rogers, meanwhile said this: "Making Music is delighted to launch this initiative with WeGotTickets. Its service is perfect for our voluntary music organisations which will benefit hugely from this simple, cost-effective and comprehensive solution to selling tickets for their events - it will help to reduce the administrative burden and broaden their reach to audiences at the same time, and they are already seeing great results. We look forward to a fruitful collaboration as the service continues to develop".

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ORANGE AND T-MOBILE TO MERGE UK BUSINESS
As you may well have seen, mobile giants Orange and T-Mobile have announced they will merge their UK businesses to create one operator that will control 37% of the UK mobile market. The new venture will be owned 50/50 by Orange and T-Mo. I've no idea what implications this has for the mobile music domain, but I'm sure there are some. If I think of any I'll return to this story.

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LABELS SIGN UP TO DIGITAL DISTRIBUTION PLATFORM
An Amsterdam-based company has announced that ten labels and distribution types have signed up to a digital distribution platform they are flogging called FUGA.

The platform is "a web application, that allows record labels, distributors and aggregators to manage their digital catalogue from a central location", and Skint, Ultra Records, Cr2 Records, Black Hole Recordings, Banshee Worx, Bonzai Music, Clone Digital, Be Yourself Music, NEWS NV, AnD Press and Stylus Music have all apparently signed up to use it.

Martijn Tjho, founder of Independent IP, the company behind FUGA, told CMU: "I am very happy that more and more content owners see the benefit of direct relationships and the web as integrated part of their music business. This is the future and all music businesses need to focus on is the music and taking it to their online audiences".

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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. Green Day - 21st Century Breakdown (Warner Bros)
2. Daughtry - Leave This Town (Sony/RCA)
3. Nickelback - Dark Horse (Warner/Roadrunner)
4. Billy Talent - III (Warner/Atlantic)
5. Shinedown - The Sound Of Madness (Warner/Atlantic)
6. Killswitch Engage - Killswitch Engage (Warner/Roadrunner)
7. Chickenfoot - Chickenfoot (Edel)
8. Theory Of A Deadman - Scars & Souvenirs (Warner/Roadrunner)
9. Behemoth - Evanglion (Nuclear Blast)
10. Rise Against - Appeal To Reason (Universal/Geffen)
11. AC/DC - Black Ice (Sony/BMG)
12. Dream Theater - Black Clouds & Silver Linings (Warner/Roadrunner)
13. Creedence Clearwater Revival - Best Of (Fantasy)
14. Alexisonfire - Old Crows/Young Cardinals (Warner/Roadrunner)
15. Devildriver - Pray For Villains (Warner/Roadrunner)
16. The Mars Volta - Octahedron (Universal)
17. Guns N Roses - Greatest Hits (Universal/Geffen)
18. Metallica - Death Magnetic (Universal/Mercury)
19. Bruce Springsteen - Greatest Hits (Sony Music)
20. Daughtry - Daughtry (Sony/RCA)*

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LENNON WOULD HAVE APPROVED OF ROCK STAR
Paul McCartney reckons his late former bandmates George Harrison and John Lennon would have been "amused" by the Beatles version of the 'Rock Band' game which is unleashed on the world tomorrow.

Speaking to The Observer about the Beatles-themed pretend-to-play game Macca said: "For us, let's remember that the central thing is our music is getting played. That's the bottom line. I'm sure John and George would have thought, 'Hey, what a clever idea'". He admitted to being a little cynical about the 'Rock Star' concept at first, but added that the team behind the game had been respectful to the band's legacy and image.

Meanwhile, Yoko Ono has also agreed that Lennon would have approved of the Beatles game. She told reporters: "It will inspire and encourage the young generation to be intimately involved in music making. You can't ask for more. It will be another musical revolution created by The Beatles to make our planet a planet of music". I think it will encourage a younger generation to actually be involved in pretend music making, but then a pretend planet of music is probably enough.

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ELBOW DON'T REALLY TIP FRIENDLY FIRES TO WIN MERCURY PRIZE
Last year's Mercury Prize winners Elbow are tipping those Friendly Fires to win this year's Prize tonight. Well, sort of. It's not the boldest tip ever, but everyone else is reporting it as a big nod from last year's winners in the Fires' favour, and who are we to interpret things otherwise?

The quote on which this story is based sees the Elbow boys saying that their favourite track from this year's shortlist is Friendly Fire's 'Jump In The Pool'. I'm assuming they realise the award is for best album and not best track, and that they gave this quote to 6Music because someone from the BBC station specifically asked them to pick a favourite track off all the shortlisted albums, though I wasn't there when it happened, it's possible they are just a bit dim.

Anyway, here is what the Elbow boys said while not tipping Friendly Fires to win: "We wish luck to everybody who is on the list this year, but more than that, congratulations on being on the list. Everybody there, make sure you have a great night. The tune that we have chosen from the 2009 shortlist - it was very difficult as well because there's so many great people on there but we thought we'd just chose one, kind of our little tip in a way - we've chosen Friendly Fires, and the song is called 'Jump In The Pool'".

Okay, they did use the word 'tip' there. But they bookend it with "kind of" and "in a way", which seems a bit non-committal, if you ask me. Look what happens when we apply it to other common phrases:

"I kind of remembered your birthday, in a way"
"I kind of did my homework, in a way"
"I kind of fed your cat while you were on holiday, in a way"

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DAVID BOWIE AND THE SPIDER FROM MALAYSIA
David Bowie has had a rare spider named after him due, according to The Telegraph, to "his musical contribution to the arachnid world". They are referring, of course, to Bowie's 1972 album, 'The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars'. This spider isn't from Mars, though. It's from Malaysia.

German arachnologist Peter Jäger told The Observer he chose the name Heteropoda Davidbowie because naming endangered spiders after celebrities helps to raise awareness of the fact that their natural habitats are being destroyed. He said: "It is working against time. We are also quickly losing genetic resources that have evolved over more than 300 million years".

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