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TODAY'S NEWS
Top Stories
Judge rules on Bluebeat.com without court hearing, owner responds
Three-strikes in the Queen's speech
Jordan Chandler's father commits suicide
Jacko police request warrants stay sealed until January
In The Pop Courts
Perez v Peas charges dropped
Rod Stewart sued for unpaid fees
Pop Politics
Beenie Man dropped from Big Day Out
Reunions & Splits
Gallagher announces new band
Fall Out Boy split, Wentz blames himself
Artist Deals
Led Bib do sync deal with Faber
Release News
Slash covers Guns N Roses
Toro Y Moi announces debut album
Reviews
Single Review: Arctic Monkeys - Cornerstone (Domino)
Brands N Stuff
Universal sign up to new brand-funded download service
The Music Business
Tina Dico raises sixty grand via Pledge
The Digital Business
Letter of intent signed in MySpace's Imeem takeover bid
Vevo to launch next month
EMI partner with Hulu on Norah TV
The Media Business
Nation applies for format change
Chart Of The Day
This week's Student Radio Chart
And finally...
Beck responds to Fiery Furance's Radiohead dig
Advertising info
Consulting info
CMU Credits + Contacts
 
THURSDAY 19TH NOVEMBER


DAVID CRONENBERG'S WIFE
Formed in 2002, London-based antifolkers David Cronenberg's Wife are the brainchild of Stockport-born singer songwriter Tom Mayne. Described by Mark Lamarr as "where genius meets idiocy", DCW have a host of disturbing yet humorous songs. The band's first album 'Bluebeard's Rooms' was released in 2008 and, despite its dark subject matter, was chosen by Q Radio as Album Of The Week and described by The Fly as "one of the albums of the year". New album 'Hypnagogues' is out now on Blang Records and the band are set to play the Autumn Antifolk Festival on the 21 Nov. We spoke to Mayne to ask the Same Six Questions.
 
Q1 How did you start out making music?
I would play the same two chords over and over again while I was learning the guitar at fifteen. I'd hum the same note over the top in a big drone. I never progressed beyond that!

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
Sleep. That feeling when you wake up hot and groggy at three in the morning and think you should move to a new place and start all over again. But if you move and you feel the same, then what next?

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
I have lots of ideas for songs floating around. After a year or so they come together, same thing with the music. Then off to the band for it to be whipped into shape. And I do mean whipped.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
The sick, bitter, deranged, but extremely polite ones.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
I'd ask them how in the world they'd heard about us. Then I'd shut up.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
I hope the new album will be a good introduction to people who haven't heard us before and a surprise to those that have, as it has quite a different feel compared to 'Bluebeard's Rooms'. I've mapped out albums three and four already, so I better get started on five. No ambitions, only plans.

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

 
GRIZZLY BEAR - READY, ABLE VIDEO
So, yesterday we approved of The Plastiscines, today it's just plastiscine, which is used to excellent effect in this brand new video from Grizzly Bear for album track 'Ready, Able'. Animation continues to become a more and more sophisticated art form (in a technical sense), but this simple stop-motion video proves that sometimes the old ways are the best. Bursting with colour, it follows a strange collection of characters around a forest and perfectly soundtracks a song from one of the year's finest LPs.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Puph1hejMQE

 
It's that time of year again, where we ask you to tell us your favourite track of the year. Just let us know your decision via this handy form, along with some details about who you are and why you made your choice. We'll publish some of your responses in CMU Daily over the coming weeks.

Cast your vote here

 
PRESS OFFICER WANTED
Leading independent music PR company looking for a Press Officer with experience in both online and traditional PR. Must be passionate, enthusiastic, intelligent, and a creative thinker. Knowledge of communications: PR, marketing, and blogging would be ideal, but not essential. If you are looking for a challenge within a dynamic company, please forward a copy of your CV to: [email protected]

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Advertise your jobs here: £100 for five editions - [email protected]o.uk

 

 
 

 

26 or younger and have never attended MIDEM? Grab your reduction now!
Either studying or working in the music industry and never attended MIDEM, benefit from a special discount rate at 280 euros, more than 50% off October rate.

Networking: Seek out key contacts and extend your professional network; make deals with your partners and identify new business opportunities.

Educational content: access to the renowned MidemNet digital business conference at no extra cost; get concrete, practical knowledge and training from experts through workshops.

Live concerts: hook up with partners and new contacts at the Opening and Closing Night Parties; discover new international artists with Talent showcases.

MIDEM: the one stop destination for the world’s music community, 23-27 January 2010. Register now! Click here

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MIDEM 2010, Cannes: Intimate club venue available for hire in the Palais du Festival - to showcase your artists and bands.

4am license. UK bar prices. 400 Capacity. Private entrance. Staff and DJ supplied.

Leyline has teamed up with Splash Promotions in Cannes to offer production, event management and PR services.

Contact 020 7575 3285 [email protected] / [email protected]

www.splashpromotions.co.uk - www.leylinepromotions.com

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SHOREDITCH OFFICE, 764 SQUARE FOOT (15-20 DESKS), £1000 PER MONTH
Self-contained office space available in the centre of Shoreditch, on the corner of Shoreditch High Street and Great Eastern Street, next to the CMU HQ. 5-8 minutes walk from Liverpool Street and Old Street tube stations. A top floor workspace with plenty of natural light in an exciting neighbourhood that is home to numerous music, media, PR and creative companies. 764 square feet, with room for 15-20 desks plus its own kitchen area and adjacent toilets. £1000 per month plus service charge and business rates (£275 per month and £600 per month respectively). Includes heating. Available now. For more information contact [email protected].

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Advertise your stuff here: £120 for five editions - [email protected]

 

JUDGE RULES ON BLUEBEAT.COM WITHOUT COURT HEARING, OWNER RESPONDS
A US judge has indefinitely extended EMI's injunction over slightly controversial American download site Bluebeat.com. These were the guys selling MP3s at a bargain basement 25 cents a time, while providing unlimited on-demand, ad-free, gratis streaming. They came to wider attention, of course, when Music Ally noticed they were selling and streaming the Beatles catalogue, even though the Fab Four's music is not available via any legit download services as a result of ongoing squabbling between co-owners EMI and Beatles company Apple Corps about how to digitally licence the music.

As you may remember, once the spotlight fell on Bluebeat.com, and EMI's lawyers got their cease and desist stationery out, the company behind the service produced a rather quirky defence. They argued that they had recreated all of the sound recordings they were distributing using a technique called "psycho-acoustic simulation", which was different than simply making a copy of the original song. Therefore, Bluebeat.com owner Hank Risan said, a new copyright existed in the recordings he was selling, and that copyright was owned by him.

It was an optimistic interpretation of copyright law, and a US judge promptly backed EMI's legal claim and ordered Bluebeat.com to stop selling any music owned by the music major. The digital service complied, though initially continued to offer EMI music, including Beatles tunes, via its free on-demand streaming player. The whole site now seems to be down.

The case was due to go to court on Friday, but Judge John F Walter pre-empted that yesterday by issuing a ruling based on evidence already submitted by both sides. He issued a preliminary injunction basically banning Bluebeat.com from selling or streaming EMI music (included reconstructed EMI music), without a licence, forever.

In his ruling, Walter wrote: "Mr Risan fails to provide any details or evidence about the 'technological process' that defendants contend was used to create the 'new' recordings or adequately explain how the 'new' recordings differ in any meaningful way from plaintiffs' recordings".

In an interview with the LA Times, Risan said he was "shocked" by the judge's pre-hearing ruling. He went on to accuse the record companies of foul play, arguing the major labels were fully aware of his company's work, adding that had the case gone to court he had paperwork to prove that was so.

As we commented when this story first broke, Bluebeat.com owners Media Rights Technologies had worked with the major record companies earlier in the decade, mainly on digital rights management solutions, and the firm's streaming radio service had been in operation for years, seemingly without controversy. The company also had a habit of issuing press releases accusing other technology companies, normally the big guys like Apple and Microsoft, of infringing music firm's copyrights through the way they delivered digital content.

All of which made it seem a little odd that this company, in the business of copyright protection, would suddenly start infringing copyrights with its newer a la carte download platform. Also odd was that their existence seemed to come as a surprise to the major record companies.

Nevertheless, when pressed by the LA Times, Risan admits that while he had all sorts of "secret agreements" with the major record companies, he didn't actually have their permission to sell reconstructed versions of their recordings at bargain basement prices. But he stands by his claim that he didn't need it.

Risan: "We worked with EMI directly, and the RIAA, in secret agreements to create these works lawfully. We've been doing so for many, many years. We were about to provide the court with such evidence that EMI knew we had in our possession. We worked with these guys. The evidence wasn't presented because we haven't had a hearing, and the judge made a ruling".

"We worked with all the major labels, all the heads of the major labels, including the RIAA and their parent organisation, the IFPI. We came out with a system in 2003, a secure copy management system, that could not be broken. They tested it and found it to be 100% successful. Upon their testing, they authorised us to make the BlueBeat sound recordings, which we have done over the years, and we agreed to pay them royalties for works that they weren't even entitled to".

"We went and actually got permission at each step of the way. The first step was to show them the technology, which they tested and found to be unbreakable. The second step was they authorised us to make the protected sound recordings. The third part, they totally approved the BlueBeat site - all the major labels and the RIAA".

All of which makes this story stranger and stranger. Though, again, when specifically pressed on the issue by the Times, Risan admits he didn't actually have any permission, from EMI or anyone else, to sell MP3 downloads of his reworked recordings, meaning his case still relies on his belief that the technical process used to create the recordings means no such permission is required.

Risan says he is consulting with his lawyers regarding his options for appeal given Judge Walter's surprise pre-hearing ruling. Meanwhile, you can read the full LA Times interview here: latimesblogs.latimes.com/music_blog/2009/11/music-download-site-bluebeat-hit-with-a-preliminary-injunction-sites-founder-responds.html

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THREE-STRIKES IN THE QUEEN'S SPEECH
As expected, the Queen's Speech yesterday included an outline of the Digital Economy Bill, the proposed legislation perhaps most notable for its three-strikes provisions.

The Bill is the conclusion of the government's much reported 'Digital Britain' review, though in reality half of that report's recommendations have been tweaked, altered and in some cases totally ignored in the creation of the Bill. Three-strikes being, perhaps, the biggest change.

Stephen Carter's 'Digital Britain' paper rejected the suspension of persistent file-sharers' net access as a tactic for tackling online piracy, advocating more direct litigation against individual file-sharers, and only talking about net suspensions as something to think about way off in the future.

Needless to say, those in the music industry who support three-strikes were glad to see the proposals - which weren't being seriously considered by the British government until August (in fact IP Minister David Lammy had previously dissed the proposals) - make it into the Queen's big speech, ensuring they will be on the government's agenda in the next year. If all goes to plan, persistent file-sharers could have their net connections suspended as soon as Spring 2011.

Geoff Taylor, the boss of record label trade body the BPI, who have probably been lobbying government on this issue longer than anyone, told reporters: "It is good news for fans of British music that government is now introducing legislation to tackle illegal downloading. The creative sector in the UK needs new measures implemented urgently that address this problem for now and the future if the UK is to lead Europe in giving consumers innovative and high quality digital entertainment".

Though, of course, opposition to three-strikes remains in a number of circles, including some within the music business. Being most vocal about the issue yesterday were lobby organisation The Open Rights Group who called on voters to contact their MPs about the three-strikes proposals. They said: "This plan won't stop copyright infringement and with a simple accusation could see you and your family disconnected from the internet - unable to engage in everyday activities like shopping and socialising".

Other key features of the Digital Economy Bill include a shake up of the radio spectrum, new powers and responsibilities for media regulator OfCom, and a film-style classification system for video games. One of the most controversial parts of 'Digital Britain' itself, the proposal that a broadband tax be introduced - a levy on all net subscriptions to fund future high speed internet development - is not in this Bill, because it will appear in the Finance Bill, which will be published after the next Budget.

So there you go. It is worth noting, of course, that few expect the Digital Economy Bill to get through parliament before the next General Election is called in the Spring. If the Tories were to win, then it would most likely be back to the drawing board regarding new internet laws.

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JORDAN CHANDLER'S FATHER COMMITS SUICIDE
The father of Jordan Chandler, the original boy to accuse Michael Jackson of molestation, has committed suicide. He shot himself earlier this month. He was reportedly still holding his gun when his body was found on 5 Nov.

Evan Chandler led the original child abuse allegations against the late king of pop in 1993. Jacko had befriended Chandler's thirteen year old son Jordy the previous year when he rented a car off the teen's step-father.

The stories of Jackson's relationship with the teenager vary wildly, of course. One side say Chandler became increasingly suspicious about the singer's relationship with his son, and the time they spent together in hotel bedrooms, challenging Jacko about it at least two times before going to the police with his concerns. The other side say Chandler resented Jackson's close but innocent friendship with his son, and subsequently forced Jordy to make wild accusations to end their relationship and extort money out of the millionaire pop star.

What we do know is that Evan Chandler accepted a $20 million dollar settlement to stop the case going to court, the bulk of which went to the teenager himself. Talk of such a cash settlement had occurred even before Chandler took his allegations about the pop star to the police. The money negotiations between Chandler and Jackson's people annoyed many of those in the Californian authorities who believed Jordan's allegations, because it enabled the Jackson clan to write the claims off as a simple case of extortion, and, more importantly, caused the criminal case against the singer to collapse.

In the end no one won from the multi-million dollar settlement. Many interpreted Jackson's pay off as an admission of guilt, even though his people were always very clear that wasn't the case. As a result Jacko's career began to decline, as did the singer's health. In many people's eyes Jackson went from being a curious eccentric to a dangerous freak, and even when Jackson successfully fought off later child abuse allegations through the criminal courts rather than his cheque book, for many that perception remained.

The Chandlers didn't fair much better. Jordan became estranged from his mother, and more recently had a serious falling out with his father which resulted in the son seeking a restraining order against his dad. Although still loaded, tabloid reports of the 29 year old Jordy always talk of a rich but lonely man who has never really recovered from being at the centre of such a big scandal.

Evan Chandler, although pocketing a million as part of the Jackson settlement, found himself embroiled in a number of lawsuits - one he initiated against Jackson for talking about the case in public, others initiated against him by his ex-wife's new husband and his own lawyer. US media claim Chandler split from his second wife, slumped into depression, became a recluse, spent a fortune on cosmetic surgery and became reliant on prescription drugs. Certainly it seems few are surprised by his suicide.

If, indeed, Jackson was innocent of all the 1993 allegations made against him, I think it's fair to say Evan Chandler's attempts to make a quick buck seriously backfired on everyone.

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JACKO POLICE REQUEST WARRANTS STAY SEALED UNTIL JANUARY
More from the Jackson file, and an LA police detective has asked a Nevada judge to keep warrant documents relating to the investigation into the late king of pop's death sealed until at least 18 Jan.

These are the documents relating to the search of a pharmacy in Las Vegas used by Conrad Murray, Jackson's personal doctor who, of course, is under investigation in relation to claims he caused the singer's death by negligently administering the powerful sedative propofol. It's thought Murray may have got the drug from the searched pharmacy. US media have been calling on judges to let them see the court documents relating to the search.

But LAPD detective Orlando Martinez urged Judge Valerie Adair to keep the files closed until the New Year in a phone call yesterday. The call was made during a public hearing, though the judge then proceeded to close the session to the public. She has now said she wants to consult with the LA County District Attorney's office before making a ruling.

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PEREZ V PEAS CHARGES DROPPED
Assault charges against Black Eyed Peas manager Liborio Molina have been dropped after he sent an apology to Perez Hilton admitting that he punched the celebrity blogger during an altercation back in June.

As previously reported over and over and over again, thanks to various delays in the court case, Molina punched Hilton at the Cobra nightclub in Toronto after the MuchMusic Video Awards in the early hours of 22 Jun. Black Eyed Pea Will.i.am had approached Hilton to ask why he had written negative things about the group's new single. I think it's fair to say that the situation got out of hand after that.

Perez, real name Mario Lavandeira, updated his Twitter followers shortly after the alleged incident happened, though mainly because he seemed to think that posting messages on Twitter was the correct way to contact the police (which I'm pretty sure it isn't, even in Canada). He said: "I was assaulted by Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas and his security guards. I am bleeding. Please, I need to file a police report. No joke". Followed by: "Still waiting for the police. The bleeding has stopped. I need to document this. Please, can the police come to the SoHo Met Hotel".

Both Hilton and Will.i.am then issued video statements the next day - Perez saying the Will had hit him, Will saying otherwise. However, Molina, who Hilton also said had hit him a few times, was charged with assault after the attack and promptly sued by Hilton for damages of $25,000 for "battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress".

A video of the punch-up quickly appeared on YouTube and although it wasn't clear enough to see who was throwing their fists, the catalyst for things turning violent seemed to be Hilton shouting at Will.i.am: "You're not a fucking artist ... you're a fucking faggot".

In his written apology to Hilton, Molina said: "I apologise for what I did on 22 Jun 2009. Even though you engaged in highly offensive comments, including a homophobic slur to my clients, I acknowledge that these kinds of issues should not be resolved through a physical response".

The blogger's lawyers issued a statement saying that they and their client were unhappy with the choice of words, but ultimately accepted the apology, saying: "Although accepting the fact that he shouldn't resort to violence, he attempted to say that there was a precipitating cause. A sincere apology is a sincere apology".

In an email to the Canadian Press, Hilton added: "I am happy that Liborio Molina has accepted responsibility for his violent actions. I look forward to reading his letter of apology and he and Will.i.am can look forward to reading my in-depth thoughts about that awful night in my new book".

Although the assault charges have been dropped, Molina must still adhere to a peace bond agreement which bars him from carrying weapons for twelve months, contacting Hilton or going within 100 metres of the Cobra Nightclub.

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ROD STEWART SUED FOR UNPAID FEES
Entertainment law firm Glaser, Weil, Fink, Jacobs, Howard & Shapiro has filed a lawsuit against Rod Stewart, claiming he owes the company $3.3 million in unpaid fees.

The fees apparently relate to three cases the firm worked on for Stewart, one of which involved the cancellation of a show in Las Vegas by the singer in December 2000. The result of that case was that Stewart was ordered to pay the show's venue, the Rio hotel, $2 million in damages. Which might explain why he's be reluctant to pay the lawyers.

Stewart has not yet commented on the new case.

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BEENIE MAN DROPPED FROM BIG DAY OUT
Jamaican dancehall MC Beenie Man has been dropped from the line-up of the Big Day Out Festival, which is due to begin touring Australia and New Zealand in January, after protests about homophobic lyrics penned by the performer.

Beenie Man, as we have reported before, has struggled to perform live in many countries in recent years, due to protests over the lyrics of a number of his tracks. One such track 'Bad Man Chi Chi Man' (chi chi being Jamaican slang for homosexual) calls for murder of gay DJs, while in 'Han Up Deh' he suggests hanging lesbians. However, the rapper has always defended his lyrics saying that they have been misunderstood.

But last week New Zealand MP and gay rights activist Kevin Hague called on the country's government not to grant Beenie Man a visa, while activists vowed to disrupt the shows if he was allowed to perform. As a result, the festival's promoters, Creative Festival Entertainment, have decided to drop him from the line-up.

In a statement, the company said: "Although aware of the controversial nature of Beenie Man and his previous lyrics that have caused offence with the gay and lesbian and wider community, the producers understood that the artist had renounced these sentiments and no longer expresses those views. Notwithstanding claims of a commitment to the Reggae Compassionate Act which he signed in 2007 and a promise of adherence to peaceful and humanistic values for the dates here by Beenie Man, the depth of feeling and hurt amongst these groups has convinced us that for us to proceed with his Big Day Out appearances was, and would continue to be, divisive amongst our audience members and would mar the enjoyment of the event for many. For this reason we have decided not to proceed".

In his own statement, Beenie Man reiterated that he had not intended to offend the gay community with his lyrics, blaming cultural differences and youthful ignorance for the interpretation of the late 90s tracks in question.

The dancehall star said: "People sometimes may misunderstand my lyrics because of slang, metaphors, jargons and dialect; it is not intended to be harmful. ... I wrote the lyrics at a point in my life when I [was] younger and was seeing a lot of exploitation of poor and defenceless young boys in the garrison - where I too was born - by rich men. [When] I wrote the lyrics boys were raped and murdered often - even recently a nine-year-old went to buy cigarettes for a man, came back and was raped and murdered. The act of sodomy was my concern when I wrote the song. I realise that those men were not gays but were predators or paedophiles which is not a common word in my dialect hence the perception when generalising. I am older and realised the difference after".

He concluded: "I have worked with gays and lesbians on videos and photo shoots and they have done great. I do not sing or perform any of those songs nor promote any violence on stage. I have been performing all over the world and there hasn't been any issues recently".

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GALLAGHER ANNOUNCES NEW BAND
Liam Gallagher has announced that he is, as he promised, working with a new band. If you can call a band consisting of most of his old band new. Only one former member of Oasis will not appear in the line-up. Can you guess who?

Speaking to Italian radio station Radio Deejay, Gallagher said: "I'll be back [playing live] within a couple of months. ... I always miss singing songs. I miss the people. We're sort of doing things at the moment. Not Oasis, Oasis is done. Everyone except for Noel".

He also told MTV Italy: ''We've been demoing some songs that we've had about, that we've had for a bit. Just doing that, on the quiet, not making a big fuss about it. 'After Christmas we might go in the studio and record them and hopefully have an album out in July. We'll do it in a different kind of way now. I'll try and reconnect with a new band, new songs, and I'm feeling confident about the songs. I'm feeling a million per cent confident that they could be better than Oasis.".

On the acrimonious split from his brother earlier this year, Liam told Radio Deejay: "To be quite honest, I think our kid wanted out. But you'll have to ask him when he comes in and does his little solo thing. We had an argument - but we've had bigger ones, about more important people. Basically, I think he wanted out, wanted something different, but he hadn't got the bollocks to tell the band or the fans".

He also expressed regret at smashing Noel's guitar during the argument, though not, apparently, because it is thought to be the exact moment the band split, but because it meant he damaged something he himself partly owned.

He said: "I didn't smash it on him, I wish I had, man. He sort of... treated my guitar poorly, which was a present off my wife. So, I thought it was only fair to pay the compliment [back] so I smashed one of his. It sounds ridiculous, like a pair of old women. That guitar of mine was mine. The guitar that I smashed of Noel's was Oasis' guitar. Part of the thing that I pay for. So, I shouldn't have smashed it really!"

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FALL OUT BOY SPLIT, WENTZ BLAMES HIMSELF
Fall Out Boy have decided to go on indefinite hiatus, and bassist Pete Wentz reckons it's all down to him and his crazy tabloid antics.

Wentz told Kerrang!: "My biggest personal reason for taking a break is that I feel my name has become a hindrance for the band. [Frontman Patrick Stump] is a musical genius and it's unfortunate that he gets reviewed based on whatever's going on in my personal life or how my hair looks. I think the world needs a little less Pete Wentz. A lot of people think Fall Out Boy is me. But it's the four of us. I want to fucking vomit when I read intros that say, 'Pete Wentz: accidental internet poster boy'. It makes me feel ugly. People who read the tabloids probably think all I do is visit Starbucks and hang out in nightclubs".

And this after Thrash Hits named them one of the bands of the decade: www.thrashhits.com/2009/11/bands-of-the-decade-fall-out-boy/

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LED BIB DO SYNC DEAL WITH FABER
Mercury-nominated Led Bib have entered into a deal with Faber Music who will now represent the British jazz purveyors in the sync domain.

Faber Music Media's Richard Paine said this: "We are delighted to have signed an agreement with Led Bib, representing them for synchronisation licensing and commissioned work for film and TV. They join our growing roster, which includes such diverse composers as Jonny Greenwood, Sir Paul McCartney, in respect of his classical works, the Oscar-winning film composer Stephen Warbeck and the sitarist Nishat Kahn. Faber Music is known for representing music that is of high quality and innovative - and both these descriptions strongly apply to Led Bib".

Led Bib's Mark Holub told CMU: "We are all really excited about the Faber signing, everything has accelerated for us since the announcement and it's a brilliant time. This new prospect of working with film and TV is a great new development and we look forward to a long and fruitful relationship with Faber".

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SLASH COVERS GUNS N ROSES
This is brilliant. Slash has annoyed millions of Guns N Roses fans, and probably the odd former bandmate, by announcing that the first single from his upcoming solo album, 'Slash & Friends', will be a cover of Guns N Roses' 'Paradise City' with vocals by Fergie from Black Eyed Peas.

The album is Slash's first solo release since 1993, and although the single is currently only scheduled for release in Japan, it's caused a bit of a stir. However, Slash assures us that everyone will be pleasantly surprised when they hear the track, saying: "Until now, not too many people have heard Fergie sing rock n roll but she sings it better than most dudes I know. She's a screamer at heart".

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TORO Y MOI ANNOUNCES DEBUT ALBUM
Former CMU Approved artist (actually, I think it was still SNAP Of The Day back then) Toro Y Moi, aka 23 year old South Carolina resident Chaz Bundwick, has announced details of his debut album. 'Causers Of This' will be released in the US via New York-based label Carpark Records on 23 Feb.

Here's the tracklist, which, while almost completely meaningless, does show that the album will include one of his two singles, 'Blessa', but not the other, 'Left Alone At Night':

Blessa
Minors
Imprint After
Lissoms
Fax Shadow
Thanks Vision
Freak Love
Talamak
You Hid
Low Shoulders
Causers Of This

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SINGLE REVIEW: Arctic Monkeys - Cornerstone (Domino)
Like their hair, and the fame of at least one of their partners, Arctic Monkeys' music is only getting more ambitious. Now a long way away from the teenage swagger of their supreme debut, 'Cornerstone' continues the Monkeys' evolution, offering perhaps less of an immediate impact than their earlier material, but with a reward just as glorious when you get there - it's three minutes of masterful, classy pop. As long as he's able to deliver such tender heartbreak, Turner will remain Britain's most purposeful lyricist, and Arctic Monkeys will remain the most deserving of those heralded "Britain's biggest". TM

Release Date: 16 Nov
Press Contact: Domino IH [all]

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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UNIVERSAL SIGN UP TO NEW BRAND-FUNDED DOWNLOAD SERVICE
The people behind a new effort to launch an ad-funded download platform have announced a deal with Universal Music.

Australia-based Guvera plans to launch its service next February. As I understand it, their website will consist of a number of branded channels, each targeting a different audience, carrying a different assortment of music, and sponsored by a different brand. Users will be directed to channels that suit their musical tastes, and brands will be charged a fee whenever tracks are downloaded from their channels.

Ad-funded downloads (as opposed to ad-funded streaming services) were much talked about two to three years ago as a way for the music industry to win over young music fans used to getting their digital music for free via illegal file-sharing networks.

While the major labels, and especially Universal, were open to the idea, none of the proposed ad-funded download platforms got off the ground, partly due to the advertising recession, and partly because of the tricky issue of how you incorporated a brand's message into a one-track download (doing so normally involved some sort of digital rights management, meaning ad-funded services couldn't use the increasingly popular MP3 format).

The most high profile of the ad-funded services was probably Spiralfrog, which closed down earlier this year. I think Guvera hope that by brands taking ownership of genre channels on their website rather than just plonking ten second spot ads at the start of tracks, consumers may respond more positively to the proposition.

Confirming Universal were on board, Guvera CEO Claes Loberg told CMU: "I am excited to announce our content deal with Universal Music Group, which has been a pioneer in championing new digital business models, as well as a steadfast advocate for artists in seeking fair compensation for the use of their music online".

Universal's David Ring added: "We are delighted to partner with Guvera, whose service will only strengthen the connection between artists and fans. Universal Music is committed to cultivating legitimate online entertainment by offering our consumers even more ways to enjoy the musical experience where they want, how they want and in the manner of their choosing".

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TINA DICO RAISES SIXTY GRAND VIA PLEDGE
Another success story from the world of fan-funding, this time via the new guy on the fan-funding street, Pledge Music.

As previously reported, Pledge is one of those websites where artists can raise investment for musical projects directly off their fans, pledging different goodies and credits in return for different levels of cash input. Pledge is notable for the freedom it gives artists in choosing what benefits they pledge, allowing artists to be very imaginative in what they offer in return for investment.

Anyway, the latest artist to fund her next project via Pledge is Danish singer-songwriter Tina Dico. She wanted to raise 30,000 euros to fund a movie soundtrack she is working on. Unfortunately she didn't raise 30,000 euros. She raised 60,000 euros, in 30 days. Not sure what she'll do with the rest of the money. Make a second soundtrack? Make the original soundtrack twice as good? Make the film to go with it?

Commenting on achievement, Pledge founder Benji Rogers told CMU: "By reaching her Pledge target in just 30 days, Tina Dico has proved that, not only does she have a really motivated and devoted fanbase, but also that there is a real future for our type of fan-funded model. For a motivated, independently-minded and creative artist like Tina, Pledge Music is perfect - it allows an artist to give their fans exactly what they want and the fans in return feel closer to the artist. By removing the barriers between fan and artist and by letting the fan become part of the whole process we are helping to create long term, intimate relationships that benefit both parties".

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LETTER OF INTENT SIGNED IN MYSPACE'S IMEEM TAKEOVER BID
Following on from news yesterday that MySpace was close to buying rival music-based social network and streaming service Imeem, there were reports last night on both TechCrunch and PaidContent that a letter of intent has been signed by the two parties, paving the way for the acquisition.

TechCrunch reckons MySpace will get Imeem for a bargain basement million dollars, though PaidContent reckons they'll have to pay quite a lot more than that. Either way, it is likely Imeem - who are reportedly going through more financially difficulties after only just avoiding bankruptcy earlier this year - will be sold for a cheap price in internet acquisition terms.

Which is possibly why MySpace have asked for the letter of intent, to stop others sweeping in and out bidding them. Quite what the letter commits both sides to - ie whether Imeem can bail and sell to another bidder - isn't clear.

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VEVO TO LAUNCH NEXT MONTH
The new online on-demand music video service being developed by Universal and Sony - Vevo - is expected to launch, in the US at least, on 8 Dec. As previously reported, the new video service will be powered by YouTube. The two majors hope that, by only carrying official music content, they can command higher advertising rates than currently charged by the video sharing website where their promos can currently be accessed. Universal are known to want other record companies - EMI, Warner and the indies - on board, though it's not clear how talks are going re making that happen.

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EMI PARTNER WITH HULU ON NORAH TV
While EMI are not yet involved in Vevo, they did confirm yesterday that they will make videos and live concert recordings available to Hulu, the US's leading online TV-on-demand platform, which has been looking into expanding its music offer for a few months now. The partnership between EMI and Hulu will begin with the creation of a special Norah Jones channel, timed to coincide with the release of her new album 'The Fall'.

EMI Music's US COO Ronn Werre told CMU: "We think Hulu is an excellent, high quality environment and a great place to connect with fans. We look forward to making more content available from other artists as well. We're delighted to add Hulu to the growing number of platforms EMI is working with to give fans more of what they're looking for".

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NATION APPLIES FOR FORMAT CHANGE
Town & Country Broadcasting has put in a request to media regulator OfCom to change the format of Nation Radio, the station that replaced Xfm South Wales when the London alternative station's then parent company GCap flogged off its Welsh outpost just six months after its launch.

Nation's owners announced their station would be more mainstream than Xfm as soon as they acquired the South Wales licence, and for three weeks after its launch the station played more poppy music than its predecessor. However, complaints were made to OfCom and raised in the Welsh Assembly and the station's owners quickly returned to an 'alternative rock' formula, though still a bit more mainstream than Xfm.

When Xfm was granted its original South Wales licence, OfCom rules said that applications for format changes could not be made in a station's first two years on air. Those rules were lifted earlier this year, though it will be two years since Xfm first went on air at the end of this month anyway.

OfCom says it will now carry out a public consultation before considering whether to allow Nation to become a station that plays "mainly modern rock" but also "other genres of appeal" to 15-34 year-olds.

In related news, OfCom has given the green light for Bristol radio station Original 106.5 to change its music policy. The station's format was previously "adult alternative, album-led" music, which meant an unusually high proportion of album tracks over chart hits. The new format will still be adult-orientated pop and rock, but with less of a commitment to playing album tracks.

Original, bought by its current owners in 2008, could also have benefited from the change in OfCom's format rules at the start of the year, though its two years on air occurred in May, so they could have requested the change now anyways.

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THIS WEEK'S STUDENT RADIO CHART
The songs most rated by student radio stations around the UK. The Student Radio Chart is compiled by the Student Radio Association and aired on student stations across the country, hosted by a different affiliated station each week. More at www.studentradio.org.uk/chart

1. Chase & Status - End Credits
2. JLS - Everybody In Love
3. Ellie Goulding - Under The Sheets
4. Ou Est Le Swimming Pool - Dance The Way I Feel
5. Arctic Monkeys - Cornerstone
6. La Roux - Quicksand
7. Passion Pit - Little Secrets
8. Calvin Harris - Flashback
9. Bombay Bicycle Club - Always Like This
10. Lady Gaga - Love Game
11. Biffy Clyro - The Captain
12. Mumford and Sons - Winter Winds
13. Julian Casablancas - 11th Dimension
14. The Drums - Let's Go Surfing
15. The Dream - Walking On The Moon
16. Bandito - Rockin At The Disco
17. Tinchy Strider - You're Not Alone
18. Grizzly Bear - Two Weeks
19. JLS - Cheat Again
20. Deadmau5 - Ghosts N Stuff (feat. Rob Swire)

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BECK RESPONDS TO FIERY FURANCES RADIOHEAD DIG
Well, this is becoming a saga now. Recently we didn't report that The Fiery Furnaces had called Radiohead "bogus" for writing a song about the death of the last surviving World War I veteran Harry Patch, because the whole thing was a bit dull. But, hey, now Beck's become involved, so let's fill you in.

In a slightly dissing post on the Furnaces' MySpace blog, the band's Matt Friedberger pretended that he thought the song was about experimental composer Harry Partch. His sister and bandmate Eleanor carried on the insults, saying in a subsequent blog: "Like most creative musicians, Matt Friedberger is not a fan of Radiohead and their various chartbusters", before adding: "Matt would have much preferred to insult Beck but he is too afraid of Scientologists".

Now Beck has apparently invited the Friedbergers' comments by posting a song entitled 'Harry Partch' on his website. According to the website, the rack is "a tribute to the composer and his desire to make the body and music unified into what he termed 'Corporeality'. The song employs Partch's 43 tone scale, which expands conventional tonality into a broader variation of frequencies and resonances".

Have a listen now at www.beck.com

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