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CMU Info
Top Stories
iPad launches - main innovations in book and newspaper domain
In The Pop Courts
Thomas knocks back RIAA damages olive branch
Doherty takes drugs to court, gets fine
Former TalkSporter can take OfCom ruling to judicial review
Awards & Contests
Music Week Awards deadline nearly here
Charts, Stats & Polls
IMPALA sales awards dished out
Haiti telethon album first digital-only album to top US chart
Reunions & Splits
An Experiment split
Release News
Joanna Newsom announces triple album
More free Yeasayer
Films & Shows News
Serge Gainsbourg gets biopic treatment
Gigs & Tours News
Japandroids return to the UK
Album review: White Rabbits - It's Frightening (Mute)
The Digital Business
We7 confirm subscription options
The Media Business
London Weekly to launch next month
Former Sony chief in the running for both Idol and X in America
ASA criticise fashion ad run in NME
Collins & Herring to cover Adam & Joe
And finally...
Boyle fine after finding intruder at home
Justin Beiber's hair tips

Essentially starting out as a hardcore band along the lines of Converge, Breather, Resist and Trap Them, these days Throats have evolved to encompass the sounds of bands like Napalm Death and Rotten Sound as well. In the past year, the band have toured with the likes of Gallows, Every Time I Die and Rolo Tomassi, as well as playing packed shows at the Great Escape and Offset festivals. The band release their eponymous debut album on 1 Feb via Holy Roar and are set to play a free show on 30 Jan at London's Old Blue Last to celebrate. We spoke to the band's Thom Sadler to ask the Same Six.

Q1 How did you start out making music?
The band started around spring 2007 simply as something to do. We formed in a small town and played to no one. Now we're largely based in London and still play to no one.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
Self-loathing, hatred, decay, a never-ending influx of shit bands, weed, avoiding real life and the need to be the loudest/heaviest band on the planet.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
Nearly every song is different in terms of writing. Bill [Trevey], Mark [Ringrose] and myself all write separately, most of the time these are just riffs or bass lines, rather than fully formed ideas. Then when it comes to putting a record together we all have ideas 'banked' in our heads which we can then pull out and flesh out into a fully formed song.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
Off the top of my head the band would all agree on Napalm Death, Fleetwood Mac, Hella, Rotten Sound, Tragedy, The Jesus Lizard, Khanate, Modest Mouse, Black Sabbath, Shellac and High On Fire. We're influenced by anyone who pushes boundaries, innovates and plays from their heart.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
Turn it up.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
I'd like it if people actually bought it. Personally, it doesn't really affect me much if it's downloaded for free; people are hearing our music and that's awesome. However, it really does affect Holy Roar who put considerable time and effort into this release. For the future, we're going to be touring UK and Europe a the start of 2010 then hooking up a US tour towards the end of the year.

MORE>> www.myspace.com/throatsofgold

Bearer of an eccentric, operatic voice, Colorado-born singer Josephine Foster's most recent album 'Graphic As A Star' saw her setting the lyrics of prolific American poet Emily Dickinson to her sparse, delicate folk guitar and bluesy harmonica. A thrilling task at 26 songs in length - no matter how short some of them are - Foster moulds Appalachian folk and early 20th century blues, with the result finding contemporaries in Vashti Bunyan and Joanna Newsom. Live, meanwhile, she's wisp thin, waif like and a compelling beauty, which heightens the reverence that's already demanded by her extraordinary, oft reverbed voice.

The record is already out via indie Fire Records, and she visited the UK relatively frequently for touring last year, so hopefully she'll be one to catch for summer festival appearances.


If you want an office or a base in the heart of the London music world...

• We have a private room plus an open plan space located at one end of the TotalRock office available from 1st April.
• There is working space for 2 in the private office and 1 in the open plan office.
• The 2 spaces can be rented separately or together.
• To make life simple the monthly rent will be £400 + VAT for the private office and £200 + VAT for the open plan area.
• This rent includes electricity and business rates.

So if you want a lively office with artists and djs in and out all day long and in easy reach of radio press and TV, this is your place!

Email tw@totalrock.com for more information.
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Joanna Lumley gets Oldie Award
London teacher says no to Johnny Depp
Royal Court leads winners at Critics' Circle Theatre Awards
Jazz FM launches City show
SeeSaw set to launch in March
Bragg gets special gong at last South Bank Show Awards
Zellweger to judge at Berlin Film Festival
Tim Burton to lead Cannes jury
Birds Eye View Film Festival announces line up

So, a mixed response overnight to Apple's latest new product, the iPad, or what had previously been dubbed the iTablet, it being Apple's big play in the so called 'tablet' PC market, ie an entertainment-focused, touch screen laptop sans fold out keyboard bit. There's no doubt that the iPad - basically a stretched out iPod Touch - is as sleek and cool looking as any previous Apple device, but with online hype leading up to the launch on a level that suggested the device might teleport its user to the moon, whatever the final product could do was going to be a bit of anti-climax by comparison.

There had been speculation as to whether the iPad would include some exciting new music-based functionality, though other than being able to display the multi-media components of the previously launched iTunes LP bigger, it seemed unlikely this device would be of major significance to the music business, certainly when compared to the original iPod or even the iPhone. Previously reported rumours of an Apple streaming-music service built on the back of the infrastructure of the recently acquired Lala.com, or some sort of 'in-the-cloud locker' service where users could store their iTunes music libraries remotely, were not discussed at yesterday's press conference, though neither services would be specifically linked to the tablet device, even if they are on Apple's agenda.

The iPad is clearly of more interest to the movie, book and newspaper industries. Though, actually, even film business types were a bit disappointed by yesterday's Steve Jobs-led presentation. While the iPad will obivously play movies bought from the iTunes store, there was no new movie-based content partnership or interactive content service for film fans. The real innovations on the iPad were in the delivery of the written word, with a New York Times app bringing the US newspaper to life in digital form, and a new Apple owned e-books service having Hachette, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, Penguin and HarperCollins on board. So, basically, the iPad isn't likely to escalate the demise of the CD or DVD, but could contribute to the decline of the printing press.

The iPad will arrive in US shops in 60 days time, with a 16GB Wi-fi connected version for $499, and a 64GB 3G connected version for $829, locked to an AT&T mobile internet plan. It remains to be seen if Apple have really cracked the battery life issue, something that has dogged the success of some of its competitor's tablet devices, and also how good internet connectivity is, some have criticised the AT&T network's 3G performance with regards the iPhone in the US.

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The Jammie Thomas dispute could go to a third trial, despite the RIAA reportedly offering to settle for under half the revised damages figure, which was already 35 times smaller than the record industry was originally awarded by the jury at the second court hearing.

As previously reported, Thomas was one of the highest profile of the individuals targeted by the Recording Industry Association Of America's file-sharing lawsuit campaign during the last decade. She chose to fight the lawsuit rather than settle out of court, and has subsequently been found guilty of copyright infringement for sharing unlicensed music via P2P networks on two occasions. The first time she was ordered to pay $222,000 in damages and then, on appeal, $1.92 million. But then last week a US judge reviewed the level of damages awarded in the case and dramatically reduced what Thomas must pay to a more realistic $54,000.

Both Thomas and the RIAA have since been considering whether to appeal that judge's ruling, knowing that doing so would necessitate a full third trial. Bosses at the RIAA - who are known to be tiring of their outstanding P2P litigation, having put their campaign of sue-the-fans behind them - are reportedly keen to settle. So much so, that not only were they willing to accept the $54,000 damages ruling, but, according to Digital Music News, they proposed to Thomas' lawyers that they would even be happy to settle for a mere $25,000.

But, DMN reports, Thomas has rejected that offer, meaning a third court hearing is now looking likely. It is unclear what Thomas' motives are, given the last time she appealed a court's ruling on this matter the damages she was due to pay went up eightfold, and it seems unlikely any court is going to completely clear her of any liability for copyright infringement. Though it is possible that Thomas' team reckon the RIAA are so desperate to be rid of this legal dispute they might be persuaded to settle for next to nothing, or maybe the lowest damages payment the court could demand under US copyright rules, which is eighteen grand.

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Pete Doherty got away with a fine after he appeared in court yesterday to face charges of bringing nine (or thirteen, depending on who you believe) wraps of heroin into a previous hearing.

Doherty was at Gloucester Crown Court on 21 Dec in relation to those previously reported drink driving charges, for which he was arrested last June. At the hearing he was given a fine of £2050. On his way out of the court, he dropped a bag containing four grams of heroin on the floor. This meant another arrest and another trip to Gloucester for the musician.

Yesterday, Doherty's lawyer Bruce Clark informed District Judge Joti Boparai that it had all been a big accident, and that the drugs had only been in Pete's pocket because he owns a lot of coats and has bought enough heroin in his time to be able to forget that he had a big bag of it in one of his pockets.

Clark said: "My client was in a rush to get to court. He was handed a coat in the morning and he didn't check the pockets. He has a great many items of clothing - suits and clothes going into the hundreds. There were residual drugs which he had left in one coat pocket. He had been in and out of court twice before the package fell out of his pocket. He feels very stupid, but he accepts responsibility.He is currently receiving treatment to get him off the drugs and he wasn't aware he would find drugs in his suit pocket. [The treatment is] working for him. This was an accident. This was the ghost of past offending, not the resurrection. This was no mickey take, it was a mistake".

Boparai seemed to agree, though said that if Doherty wasn't "doing it [the in-court drug dropping] for the publicity", he was certainly stupid. Sentencing him to a £750 fine, Boparai said: "I am sure by your reputation this was simply stupidity on your part and it wasn't any more than that. It was simply an error".

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One from the radio courts rather than the pop courts now. Former TalkSport presenter Jon Gaunt has been told he has an "arguable case" to fight an OfCom ruling against him on human rights grounds.

As previously reported, media regulator OfCom ruled Gaunt had breached broadcasting codes when, during a heated interview on the national talk station, he called the Head Of Children's Services at Redbridge Council, one Michael Stark, a "nazi", a "health nazi" and an "ignorant pig" over plans to ban smokers from fostering children. TalkSport had already fired Gaunt over the incident ten days after the interview, they having received numerous listener complaints in addition to the 53 formal complaints made to OfCom.

Gaunt, now working on The Sun's online radio service, claims that calling a council official a "nazi" or "ignorant pig" is not in itself offensive enough to be deemed contravening broadcasting decency codes. His legal rep Gavin Millar QC says: "In the 21st century, in a heated debate with a politician, to call them an ignorant pig is not the stuff of an intervention by a regulator. It's not offensive material of the sort".

OfCom argued that the Human Rights Act was not relevant in this case, in which the government agency was just exercising its duty to enforce broadcasting rules. But a judge yesterday ruled there was an argument that OfCom had breached Gaunt's right to freedom of expression, and that OfCom's ruling could therefore be given a full judicial review.

Gaunt is presumably pursuing this action in a bid to cut the regulator down to size. TalkSport had fired him before the regulator had even ruled on the incident, and the presenter is now seemingly happy with his new job at SunTalk which, as an internet service, is not regulated by OfCom. Commenting on this case, Gaunt told reporters: "We don't need OfCom, we have got an off switch. We have a draconian, unelected, expensive-to-run quango of do-gooders who can stand there and say 'this is good taste and decency'. We don't need them".

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The deadline for entering this year's Music Week Awards is tomorrow, so if you think you might be eligible and want to put yourselves forward for the big music business awards bash, then you better get on over to www.musicweekawards.com pretty pronto.

As previously reported, several new categories have been added this year, including Live Production Team, Mail-Order Online Retailer, Studio, Consumer-facing Digital Service and Music Mobile App.

Music Week Editor Paul Williams told, well, Music Week: "The event is all about celebrating the successes of the music industry over the past year and we can only do that by companies and individuals submitting entries, so we can rightly highlight what they have achieved. We have widened the scope and the number of categories for the 2010 event to make them more relevant to more of the industry, so there is more reason than ever to consider entering".

The awards themselves take place on 15 Apr in good old-fashioned London town.

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IMPALA has dished out its latest set of album awards. These are the pan-European indie label trade body's version of the BPI and IFPI's gold disk type awards, specifically celebrating big selling albums released by European indie labels (and with lower unit targets than the more mainstream record industry sales-based gongs).

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Vampire Weekend's 'Contra' is already high up on this list, despite only just being released. As previously reported, the lastest long player from the XL Recordings signed New Yorkers was the first album released by a UK indie to top the US charts in nearly two decades. However, it is two older albums that top the IMPALA list, sales of Katie Melua's 'Pictures' and The Prodigy's 'Invaders Must Die' having been sufficient to move them up a level in the overall sales charts.

The albums to go gold, diamond or multiple platinum this time are as follows:

Multiple Platinum (1.5 million+)
Katie Melua - Pictures (Dramatico)

Double Platinum (1 million+)
The Prodigy - Invaders Must Die (Cooking Vinyl)

Diamond (250k+)
Arctic Monkeys - Humbug (Domino)
Dead Kennedys - Fresh Fruit For Rotting Vegetables (Cherry Red Records)
Franz Ferdinand - Tonight (Domino)
Various Artists - Pillows Prayers (Cherry Red Records)
Vampire Weekend - Contra (Beggars/XL)

Gold (100k+)
Benjamin Biolay - La Superbe (Naïve)
Chuckie LMFAO - Let The Bass Kick In Miami Girl (Cr2 Records Ltd)
Grizzly Bear - Veckatimest (Warp)
Gurrumul - Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu (Dramatico/Skinnyfish)
Jay Sean - My Own Way (Jayded/2Point9)
Pink Martini - Splendour In The Grass (Naïve)
Scooter - Under The Radar, Over The Top (Kontor Records)
The Gaslight Anthem - The 59 Sound (Side One Dummy/Cargo)
Tom Waits - Glitter & Doom (Live) (Anti)
Tracey Thorn - A Distant Shore (Cherry Red Records)
The xx - xx (Young Turks)

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Perhaps unsurprising, but worth noting. The 'Hope For Haiti Now' benefit album, a recording of the performances that took place at last week's George Clooney organised telethon in aid of the post-earthquake relief effort in Haiti, is the first digital-only album to top the US album chart, having shifted 175,000 units in just three days.

The album was rushed to the digital market place by digital distributors INgrooves, who were working for free, in a bid to maintain the momentum of the MTV-produced fund-raiser, which was aired across the MTV network and on numerous US TV stations last Friday. All digital retailers are also passing on all their fees to the telethon fund, who will in turn provide monies to various aid organisations helping with the relief effort.

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CMU favourites An Experiment On A Bird In The Air Pump have announced that they have split up, which is no good. This means a UK tour that was due to begin on Saturday will now not go ahead.

In a statement, the band's D-Bird said: "After almost two years together, we lay to rest one of the most exciting, exhilarating and exhausting projects I have ever been involved in. It all started off from an impromptu jam, an impromptu band formed and within such a short time, the impromptu band went full time, touring the world, recording with the likes of Steve Albini and meeting people I could only ever dream we'd meet".

She continued: "Rather than dwelling on the reasons for ending I think it's important to look back and reflect on a proud achievement. We had fun, I adored instrument swapping and more than anything, I loved being on stage".

D-Bird, or Dee Blue to use her new nom de plume, will now concentrate on her other band, Blue On Blue, while C-Bird and X-Bird will go back to performing as a duo under the names Eve Black and Eve White.

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Joanna Newsom has announced that her third album, 'Have One On Me', will be spread over three CDs, which either means it'll be brilliant, or that she's taken the idea of filler tracks to a whole new level. A track currently streaming on the front page of the Drag City website, '81', leans more towards the brilliant end of the spectrum. So that's good.

Check out '81' here: www.dragcity.com

How about we have a run down of the tracklists for all three discs, too? Yeah, I know these are just meaningless words, but sometimes it's nice to look at random words.

Disc One:
Have One On Me
Good Intentions Paving Company
No Provenance
Baby Birch

Disc Two:
On A Good Day
You And Me, Bess
In California
Go Long

Disc Three:
Soft As Chalk
Ribbon Bows
Does Not Suffice

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We're quite excited about the new Yeasayer album. Did you notice? Part of me thinks we should stop talking about it, for fear of building it up too much. But it really is that good. Really. It really, really is. This is further proved by the second single from the album, 'ONE', which has just been made available as a free download on the band's website.

The album, 'Odd Blood', is due for release via Mute on 8 Feb, with UK tour dates later that month. The band will also play a headline show at Koko in London on 22 Mar.

Download 'ONE' from here: www.yeasayer.net

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The life and death of French musician Serge Gainsbourg has been captured on film in the directorial debut of comic book writer Joann Sfar.

Entitled 'Serge Gainsbourg: Une Vie Heroique', the film was originally set to star Charlotte Gainsbourg as her father, although she pulled out of the project prior to filming, to be replaced by Eric Elmosnino. Co-vocalist on the star's best known hit, 'Je T'aime', and Charlotte's mother, Jane Birkin, is played by British actress Lucy Gordon, and another of Serge's lovers, Brigitte Bardot is played by Laetitia Casta.

Sfar told the BBC: "I know it was perhaps a foolhardy thing to take on the life of Serge Gainsbourg. He is such an icon. But thankfully the initial reaction of audiences has been positive. A lot of people have come up to me and said - thank you for not taking away our Gainsbourg".

No UK release date for the film has yet been announced.

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Garage rock duo Japandroids will be back in the UK next month ahead of the release of their new single, 'Rockers East Vancouver', via Polyvinyl on 1 Mar.

Tour dates:

22 Feb: Brighton, Freebutt
23 Feb: London, ICA
24 Feb: Leeds, Cockpit 3
25 Feb: Manchester, Deaf Institute
26 Feb: Glasgow, King Tut's
27 Feb: Liverpool, Korova

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ALBUM REVIEW: White Rabbits - It's Frightening (EMI/Mute)
For a band so reliant on Jamie Levinson's skilled, thoughtful drumming (and Matthew Clark's, too, on occasion, when one kit just isn't enough), it's odd to find this rhythm section somewhat of an afterthought when it comes to the production on White Rabbit's second full-length effort. Instead of the velveteen lush of fellow New Yorkers The National or Interpol, who have built their own dark sounds around similar tight beats, on 'It's Frightening' what should have been the domineering force to drive this album is reduced to a weak, tinny almost amateur sound. Which lets an otherwise promising long player down.

In fact opening track 'Percussion Gun' almost feels like a parody of their genre, despite the clear imagination involved, with an otherwise faultless array of melodies and musicianship not enough to turn this sound around. Said talent delivers better on 'Rudie Fails' and 'Right Where They Left', which take exciting twists through the world of American indie, blending the Okkervil River ecstasy with the cornfield sunshine of The Shins, all augmented with a more natural regimentation akin to the aforementioned Interpol. And the rest of what is here is enough to make the album just about work as a whole, despite the obvious, outlaid grievances and paradoxes.

But with a bit of polish, this could have given White Rabbits their teeth. Instead, right now it seems that carrot's just a bit too tough to get through. TM

Release Date: 25 Jan
Press Contact: Mute HQ [all]

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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We7 have confirmed details of their new subscription packages, which, as previously reported, the Spotify rival's top man, Steve Purdham, promised were coming imminently at MIDEM last weekend.

There will be two levels to the We7 subscription service, depending on whether users want to access music on just their PC, or also via mobile. The distinction means that the basic We7 subscription service will undercut Spotify considerably, coming in at £4.99 a month. This will provide access to the We7 streaming catalogue via desktop computers without ads.

The Premium Plus service will retail at £9.99 a month and will include use of an app for iPhones and some Android-based mobiles, which will enable use of We7 on the move. Like Spotify, this will include the function to download locked tracks to the actual phone, so that the service works even if wi-fi or mobile reception are not available.

The first service launches on Monday, with the Plus service coming online just as soon as Apple approve the We7 app.

Confirming the new subscription services, Purdham told CMU: "We7 has come a long way in the last twelve months, type the generic term music into Google in the UK and you get 1.6 billion entries and We7 is the number one result. Not bad for an ambitious UK business. The new premium services are about choice for the consumer, in the new digital music economy there is no single business model that fits all, that is why we give consumers the ability to listen to great music how they want, where they want and at a price they are prepared to pay".

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The previously reported new weekly freesheet for London, the London Weekly, which hopes to capitalise on the hole left by the demise of both of the capital's daily free papers, thelondonpaper and London Lite, will launch on 5 Feb. It's website went live last month.

According to the Guardian, the new title, owned by start up Global Publishing Group, will initially distribute 250,000 copies each Friday and Saturday.

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Former Sony Music chief Tommy Mottola - probably best known to the general public as the former Mr Mariah Carey or the record label man Michael Jackson accused of racism (when the king of pop's album didn't do so well) - could be the next big name in the telly talent show domain.

Word has it that bosses of 'American Idol' are talking to Mottola about him replacing Simon Cowell on the pop contest franchise, but that Cowell is also hoping to recruit the former Sony man for the US version of 'X-Factor' the launch of which is necessitating Cowell's departure from 'Idol' in the first place.

Other record industry big wigs being talked about as possible Cowell replacements on 'Idol' include Interscope chief Jimmy Iovine and Madonna's business man Guy Oseary.

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The Advertising Standards Authority has criticised the NME for running an ad for fashion house Fly53, which featured a man gripping another guy by the throat and pointing a gun to his head. The cartoony ad was based around Fly53's ongoing shtick of "confessing your fashion crimes".

The brand and the mag denied the ad glamorised gun crime, saying it was aimed at an "educated, creative and intelligent young market" who wouldn't infer any sinister messages from the artwork (NME readers educated, creative and intelligent? Yes, of course they are, you doubters you).

But the ASA said the ad was "aggressive and threatening" and had a "menacing atmosphere" and should never have been published in the music weekly.

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Andrew Collins and Richard Herring have been announced as the next guest presenters to cover Adam Buxton and Joe Cornish's Saturday morning slot on BBC 6music while they take time off to concentrate on other projects. The pair take over from Danny Wallace, who has been filling in since Christmas, with the first of their five shows broadcasting this weekend.

Says Andrew Collins: "Richard and I have been childishly jealous of Adam and Joe's success and immaculate speaking voices for many years. Now they have gone to Hollywood on the flimsy pretext of having some 'other work' to do for a bit, we are only too pleased to jump into their shoes and play with their loyal listeners for the next five weeks. We cannot promise any pets in the studio, but we will be drawing upon the unbalanced enthusiasm of the Saturday morning audience and hoping to create a genial, jumper-wearing 'Swap Shop' atmosphere, like Saturday mornings used to be, in other words. Also, we guarantee never to record a song. You have our word on that".

Collings and Herring will have to tone down a bit from the content that fills their weekly podcast. The stuff about having sex with tortoise shells should be fine, though.

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Susan Boyle found an intruder at her house earlier this week but is "feeling fine". So that's a relief for one and all, I'm sure.

Confirming she'd discovered a teen on her stairs when she returned to her home in the Scottish town of Blackburn, she told reporters this week: "I'm fine. It's in the hands of the police now".

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So, thanks to Shane MacGowan, we already know that the only way to cure baldness is to "pour Guinness over your head, collect it in a bucket, and drink it in the morning". That's all fine. But what if you're still a young tyke with a head covered in a mop of glossy hair. What the hell do you do then? See, you don't know, do you? Justin Beiber does, though.

In an in depth and highly informative interview with catchily-named US radio station Q100 this week, the teen pop sensation unveiled the secret of how he keeps his hair in the style he may or may not be known for. He barked: "After I have [a] shower, I blow dry my hair and just shake it and it goes like that".

See, he was so excited that he forgot to say "a" before "shower". This is groundbreaking stuff. He also revealed: "I just really love girls!"

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