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CMU Info
Top Stories
It's the logo that really matters
The Men From The Press closes
In The Pop Courts
Terra Firma win round one of Citigroup litigation, New York it is
Sunshine Band founder admits to sex with teenage boys
Prince named on unpaid taxes list
Bieber's manager charged over mall fracas
Gorillaz awaiting Eddy Grant's call
In The Pop Hospital
Grohl claims coffee overdose was genuine
Jim Marshall dies
Matthew Sztumpf dies
Awards & Contests
British Press Awards awarded
Release News
Elliott Smith fans outraged by debut album reissue
Love Is All to release new album
Gigs & Tours News
Akon denied Sri Lankan visa
Charlotte Gainsbourg announces first ever UK shows
Festival News
Festival line-up update
Album review: Woodenbox With A Fistful Of Fivers - Home And The Wild Hunt (Electric Honey)
The Music Business
PRS restructures, two senior execs leave
The Media Business
Your Media goes under
Chart Of The Day
This week's Student Radio Chart
And finally...
Bassist accuses Gaga of failing to pay
The Wurzels react to 'cider tax'
Bono is the worst investor in America

Having been in numerous bands since the age of fourteen, Andrew WK released his first solo work in 1998. His debut album 'I Get Wet' was released in 2001 via Island Records, full of chant-along pop-metal anthems and featuring one of his best known tracks, 'Party Hard'. Andrew has gone on to record four studio albums in total, though the third, 'Close Calls With Brick Walls', was, due to legal issues, only made available in Japan and Korea when it was released in 2006. That 'lost' album finally got a UK release through his new label, Steev Mike, this week, packaged with a compilation of rare and unreleased material called 'Mother Of Mankind'. We caught up with Andrew to ask the Same Six.

Q1 How did you start out making music?
I started playing piano at age four and a half. I watched my dad taking lessons and I wanted to do it, too. The gods had a special plan for me (as they do for everyone) and I believe they were pushing me towards the piano. I was born for it - or at least I'm willing to die for it.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
Both 'Close Calls With Brick Walls' and 'Mother Of Mankind' were primarily inspired by several types of chord changes and piano voicings. I usually work in a strict major key head space, but this release is the first time I really pushed out into more intense minor key scales and shadow sounds. I had to break free of my own beliefs and tastes, or at least try to.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
I eat a very, very large meal. Usually packed with bread and peanuts. Or maybe a curry with a lot of spices. Once I feel I can't eat anymore, I drag myself into the bathroom and just sit on the toilet and wait. At the moment of defecation, I receive a divine inspiration, which I attempt to scribble down on the roll of toilet paper. I then take these notes and use them wipe myself, before flushing the entire mess down the drain. Whatever I can remember of my notes the next day, I record, and a song is born.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
I am most influenced by an artist named Lucas Samaras.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
I would say: "HELLO! Welcome! Thank you for giving me your time and attention. I would like to entertain you. I'd like to give you some ideas to think about. I'd like to party with you!" Entertainment is the best art form, in my opinion, because it contains every other type of artistic craft: music, visual art, film and video, performance, text and writing, etc. All of these can be included and enjoyed in show business.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
My ambition is to experience fun! My goal has been, is, and always will be to create feelings of energy, excitement, and possibility. A sense of wonder and freedom that each person can take out into the world and use to fulfil their own dreams! Raw power! I feel like this is all just starting - it always feels new.

MORE>> www.andrewwk.com

Hailing from Brooklyn, Fang Island describe their sound as "everyone high-fiving everyone" and claim their main aim is to "make music for people who like music". What either of those things mean is up for debate, but the band's sound mixes the slightly unlikely combination of Jay Reatard, Marnie Stern, Andrew WK and Thin Lizzy to create songs that are exciting and immediate.

With suitably wide-eyed praise lauded on them by Pitchfork, and having been one of the artists who saw the biggest growth in interest following last week's SxSW, the band's eponymous debut album is out now and has become a regular feature on the CMU stereo. You can stream the album for free and download it for $6.99 (which is pretty much free) at the link below. If you're pushed for time, start with recent single, 'Daisy', or just enjoy the brilliant cover artwork.


Academy Music Group is looking to recruit a Marketing Partnership Manager to manage the delivery of the company's key marketing partnership with O2 and our other partners. The role is based at AMG's Head Office at the O2 Academy Brixton.

Applications to: Rita Garavan, Human Resources Manager, O2 Academy Brixton. Email: rita@academy-music-group.co.uk Closing date: Friday 2nd April 2010.

For a full job description, please visit www.academy-music-group.co.uk/jobs/index.aspx
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Bush Theatre announces new season stuff
Baddiel speaks about 'The Infidel'
Flight Of The Conchords announce second Wembley date
94 MPs sign save 6 motion
Cash-Gordon site discovers danger of automated Twitter feeds
NLA dispute to rumble on for a year
Music festival line-up update - 24 Mar 2010
Michael McIntyre leads winners at Chortle Awards
Pullman will have security guards at Oxford Literary Festival

So, it turns out the Music Matters campaign launched yesterday is rather more confusing than we originally thought, which is a shame for something that has seemingly been set up with the aim of presenting the wider world with a nice simple message regarding music piracy, and why people should pay for music rather than nicking it.

Actually, at the core of the project is a Music Matters logo - or "trustmark" if you like stupid words that no one understands - which licensed download stores and streaming services are now carrying to communicate to their customers that they are a legit digital music operation paying labels and publishers and artists and songwriters for the music they use.

This is a decidedly sensible idea, which we've suggested here in CMU on several occasions in the past, most recently when professional moaners Consumer Focus released that research which claimed the average consumer had no idea which digital music services were legal and which ones were not.

Unfortunately, the music matters' logo is a bit rubbish, the words "music matters" doing little to communicate the all important message to the uninitiated web-user, that "this shit is legal". But still, that a logo exists and has been adopted by most legit digital operations is a step in the right direction.

So far, so simple. The reason we got so confused about the Music Matters campaign, though, is that all the publicity surrounding the launch of the logo seemed to focus on the previously reported Future Shorts-coordinated animated films which tell the stories of eight artists from the last century, from Blind Willie Johnson to Sigur Rós.

In reality the videos are a means to an end to promote the 'trustmark', but instead the trustmark seemed tagged on as a side thought to an undeniably interesting short film project. Which is why our initial report, like all the initial publicity, focused entirely on the Future Shorts-led videos and not at all on the industry-led initiative to clarify to the public which digital music services are legal.

The videos themselves are, I think, also meant to convince punters that they should access music from licensed and 'trustmarked' digital services rather than downloading tunes from Limewire or via The Pirate Bay or nicking them off a mate's computer. Unfortunately, while lovely to watch and very well made, the videos fall well short of communicating this message.

Half of them focus more on 'why music mattered' to the creators being documented than why their music mattered to others, and even those that do explain why music matters to the wider world - to bring together communities in times of strife, to promote love and peace etc - don't then go onto explain why this means you should pay to access music rather than taking it for free.

Presumably the message the project hopes to get across is this: Good music costs money, so if you want good music tomorrow you need to pay for good music today. But none of this is communicated in the videos, or the accompanying website.

Music Matters is seemingly an effort to create an anti-piracy campaign that involves credible artists, and which avoids the temptation to compare file-sharing music fans to car thieves. This is a good thing. The problem is, the 'file-sharing is evil' message has been replaced with a load of wishy washy nonsense which will communicate little to its target audience.

Not that it's really clear who that target audience is. The sorts of people who will be attracted by arty videos featuring Sigur Rós, John Martyn, The Jam and Louis Armstrong are probably some of the record industry's best customers already, while the file-sharing kids or Magic listeners who are new to the digital music thing won't give the Music Matter's website a second look.

So like I say, very confusing. Music Matters: a lovely art project, a sensible if slightly rubbish 'trustmark' initiative, and a rather poor communication campaign.

You can check it all out for yourself at www.whymusicmatters.org

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The Men From The Press, the previously reported online service which planned to offer a "brand new type of music PR" by paying journalists to fill out online feedback forms after listening to unsigned and self-releasing artists who signed up to the website, announced yesterday that it was closing its doors, a matter of weeks after launching, following widespread derision from both the journalism and PR communities.

As previously reported, the journalists who signed up to the scheme, who were seemingly all freelancers, did not commit to give anything they listened to any actual coverage in any of the media they work for (and in many cases would not be able to anyway), but, rather, they provided a direct critique to each paying artist, which might constitute useful feedback in itself and, if positive, could be used in a band's other publicity. That said, the aim obviously was to force participating journalists to expose themselves to the music bands had paid to upload to the website, in the hope some of the hacks would genuinely like some of music, and then become influential champions of those bands.

Though in theory there was nothing ethically wrong with the service - providing paying bands knew they were buying feedback not coverage - because the service charged a per journalist fee, and because the rate card listed the publications each writer worked for (minus their names), and also because the fee was higher the more esteemed the publication, some argued that the implication was that you could, in fact, buy coverage.

Certainly it would have been easy for less media-savvy exposure-hungry new artists to misconstrue what was actually on offer, and little was done to stress that actual coverage was not for sale. The page on the website where artists selected which writers they wanted feedback from was topped with this explanation: "Listed below are the current publications our journalists write for together with their respective submission fees, which are to cover our admin costs and journalist submission fees - there are no other hidden charges! Please note: Most of our journalists write for several publications, which is why some are bundled together as below... the submission fees are for each bundle, so this gives you more value for money".

As a result, many of the publications listed requested that their titles be removed from the site, even if some of their freelance contributors were actually involved in the new service, because they didn't want confused bands to think editorial coverage was for sale. Meanwhile, some of the journalists signed up seemingly withdrew their services, possibly because the publishers and editors of the titles they write for had started to express concerns. Or possibly because they never really understood what the Men From The Press offer was going to be. Some of the service's participating journalists said they were originally approached by someone who simply asked if they would like to be paid to give feedback to new bands, without being told they'd be participating in a new kind of music publicity venture.

A statement posted on the website yesterday by founder Dave Chisholm, and also emailed to signed up artists, read: "The whole point of themenfromthepress.com was to provide PR in a 'brand new way'. So bands, artists and small labels who simply haven't got the funds would be given a chance! I put a hell of a lot of work into this and set TMFTP up for all the right reasons and with all the best intentions to help new bands and artists as I know how tough it is for them in this business... But we have now been shot down in flames!

He continued: "Certain publications and some traditional PR companies (who I will not name) have made it impossible for us to carry on through their constant slanderous remarks and activities which have damaged our reputation to the point where we have lost all heart with the project. And so sadly and with great regret we have now closed! I would like to say a very big thank you to the many bands artists and journalists who have and still support us ... I tried to make a difference but sorry guys... they wont let us..."

Chisholm also said that all subscription and submission fees would be refunded to those artists who had signed up. Though those artists who opted to pay by PayPal were never charged in the first place, because a glitch in the website's programming meant that, although subscription fees were charged, those paying by the online payment system were able to submit their music for review without paying anything at all.

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Hey, some good news for Terra Firma. Who'd have thought? The EMI owners have won round one of their legal squabble with Citigroup regards the equity firm's purchase of the music major back in 2007.

As previously reported, Terra Firma are suing their bankers over allegations Citigroup execs gave bad advice, and withheld crucial information, in the days before the equity group made its bid for the music company, in particular failing to inform Terra Firma boss Guy Hands that it looked likely that rival bidders were going to step away from the negotiating table.

Had Hands and his team had this information, they argue, they would not have bid so quickly, or certainly not at the higher price they offered. And had Terra Firma not rushed to take control of EMI, the credit crunch would have probably occurred before the deal was done. The crunch radically changing the context of the takeover, and had the EMI deal still to be done after the economic downturn had begun, it's possible Hands et al would have walked away form the deal.

Once it became clear late last year that Citigroup would not write off a cool billion of EMI's debt like Terra Firma wanted, Hands and his team decided to go the litigation route, claiming that the bank gave bad advice back in 2007 because of a conflict of interest, another branch of the same bank were advising EMI's then management.

Terra Firma are suing through the US courts, but the bank tried to have the case moved to the UK on the basis the EMI deal was really a London-based transaction. Conspiracy theorists suggested Citigroup wanted the court case moved to London just to piss off Hands, who last year stomped off to the Channel Islands in a huff about the Labour government's increase in tax levels for the super rich, and as a result he can only spend a handful of days in the UK capital without breaching tax rules. That would make it difficult for Hands to be personally involved in the court battle.

But a New York judge has dismissed Citigroup's attempts to get the case moved, saying, simply: "For reasons that will be elaborated in a forthcoming written opinion, Citi's motion is denied in its entirety". Citigroup said they were disappointed with the ruling, but that they looked "forward to defending ourselves in this case, which we believe is entirely without merit".

According to the FT, the first proper court hearing is now due to take place in New York on 18 Oct, with a pre-trial conference on 10 Sep.

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Record producer Richard Finch, best known as co-founder of and bass player in KC's Sunshine Band, has reportedly admitted to police he had sex with various teenage boys aged between thirteen and seventeen. The admission was apparently made after one boy told police earlier this week that he had sexual contact with the 56 year old music man. Finch was subsequently arrested and, police say, he then admitted this was not the only such incident.

Currently being held at the Licking County sheriff's office, there is no word on what charges will be pressed against the producer, nor when the arraignment will take place. Despite police claiming Finch has admitted his crimes, as of this morning the home page of his company's website still read: "We appreciate your contact, but at this time, we have no comment. We will let due process happen through the legal system and through that, we are sure Mr Finch will be vindicated from these unfounded allegations".

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A 'name them and shame them' list of people owing taxes that was published in a local newspaper in Carver Country, Minnesota this week includes a certain Prince R Nelson, or Prince for short, who, the notice claims, owes $220,000 in unpaid property taxes on one property alone. Local reports suggest there are actually a number of unpaid tax bills associated with the musician, so that he owes the County $506,000 in total.

The notice says that if Prince's people don't make payment before 21 Apr "a court judgment will be entered against the property for the unpaid tax, penalty, interest, and costs".

Prince is yet to comment.

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I'm sure lots of you think several people should be locked up for unleashing the Justin Bieber phenomenon on the world, but probably not for failing to fulfil what is seemingly a new constitutional duty in America: sending out a tweet when told to do so by the police.

Yes, a second music business man has been charged in relation to that shopping mall event that was due to feature the squeaky-voiced hair cut that is Justin B last November, where, as previously reported, 3000 teenage fans went a bit crazy as they awaited the popster's arrival.

So much so that police tried to cancel the event, but struggled to clear the Bieber fans who weren't convinced the pop teen wouldn't soon be in the house, partly because he'd sent out a tweet - picked up by fans on their mobiles - announcing "on my way to Roosevelt Field Mall in Long Island, NY to sign and meet fans! I'm pumped, see u there".

Police then demanded that the still-to-arrive popster send out a new tweet confirming to his fans that the mall appearance had, indeed, been cancelled. They asked a rep from his label Island Def Jam to send the tweet, but he didn't have access to the Bieber Twitter account. They then called the singer's manager to tell him to send the tweet, but he said he wasn't near a computer. Presumably Bieber himself wasn't contactable.

The police claim neither Island Def Jam man James Roppo nor manager Scott 'Scooter' Braun seemed to take the mall issue seriously. Officers seemingly threatened to put out an arrest warrant for Braun if he didn't get tweeting to Bieber's fans. The manager allegedly responded to the effect that he'd appreciate it if they spell his name right on the warrant. This presumably angered police, who promptly arrested Roppo instead. When Roppo called Braun from his police cell, the manager managed to get to a PC to tweet to the Bieber massive that the mall event was definitely off.

Roppo has been charged with a series of misdemeanours, including endangering the welfare of children and obstructing governmental administration, and his case is pending. Now Braun has been formally charged also, and reportedly faces a year in jail if convicted, which seems rather extreme for failing to tweet, but there you have it. His lawyer said yesterday that Braun responded to the police's tweet demands as quickly as he could, and should therefore not be held liable for anything that happened back at the mall.

As news of the charges against his manager reached the media yesterday Bieber tweeted his support for Braun, and was reportedly seen wearing a t-shirt bearing the words 'Free Scooter' later in the afternoon.

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Gorillaz are reportedly still waiting for Eddy Grant to get in touch with them, after he claimed that Damon Albarn and his cartoon buddies had used his 1977 track 'Time Warp' as the basis for their latest single 'Stylo', without permission.

The band's manager, Chris Morrison told BBC Newsbeat yesterday: "Nobody has officially approached me about any contravention of any copyright. When I'm approached, I'll deal with it".

As previously reported, Grant issued a statement last week, in which he said: "I am outraged that the Gorillaz have infringed the copyright of my song 'Time Warp' [while] claiming their song 'Stylo' to be an original composition. My song sits almost note to note with their release [which] is a blatant rip off. 'Time Warp' is a very popular song and has been a staple of the DJ scene for many years and I feel total disrespect from Gorilliaz and their management company, especially as they are an established act".

He also pointed out that, as both he and Albarn publish their songs through EMI Music Publishing, it was surprising that no one had noticed the similarities sooner.

The publishing company told the BBC that the claim was "a private matter between Eddy Grant and Gorillaz".

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Dave Grohl has said the previously reported video recently posted on YouTube documenting the musician's coffee addiction, and hospitalisation after overdosing on the drink, had some basis in reality. Though it sounds more like it was really exhaustion that forced him to seek medical help.

Grohl told Spinner: "We were in the studio making a record and I was drinking a lot of coffee. I was doing Vultures stuff at night, Foo Fighters stuff during the day and I had a newborn at home, so I was sleeping two to three hours a night on an air mattress in a guest bedroom. And yeah, I had too much coffee. I started to get chest pains so I went to the hospital and they told me to stop drinking so much coffee".

I hope they told him to get some sleep, too. Anyway, here's the original video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhdCslFcKFU

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Jim Marshall, a music photographer with over 500 album covers to his name, has died aged 74. Having started photographing musicians while still at school in San Francisco, it was when he moved to New York after a stint in the army that Marshall began to build a reputation as a photographer within the rock community, though much of his iconic work came after he moved back to his home town.

His pictures of the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival and Jimi Hendrix's famous guitar burning exploits, and his photos of Woodstock two years later, ensured widespread attention for his work. Meanwhile, his personal friendships with many of the big artists of the era ensured him some uniquely candid shots. Famously, he was the only photographer allowed backstage at what turned out to be The Beatles final ever concert at San Francisco's Candlestick Park in 1966. Other musicians Marshall photographed over the years included Bob Dylan, The Grateful Dead, Janis Joplin and The Rolling Stones.

He died a day before a planned reception in New York where a new book of his work was due to be launched. Aaron Zych, manager of Morrison Hotel Galleries, which hosted one of Marshall's last exhibitions, confirmed the photographer's death yesterday, adding: "Jim's work is legendary. As far as music photographers, he is the godfather".

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Matthew Sztumpf, an artist manager who worked with the likes of Madness, The Smiths and Swing Out Sister, died last weekend after suffering from a brain aneurysm.

Sztumpf actually worked in both the management and live sector, though is probably best known for his time as manager of Madness. He also managed The Smiths for two brief periods. His work in the live industry went from organising the famous Two Tone tour of the late 1970s to heading up tour and sponsorship activity for Sony Music Europe to more recent tour management duties with Scouting For Girls.

Paying tribute to Sztumpf, John Kalinowski, another former Madness manager, told Music Week: "Towards the end of my stint managing Madness, I needed help. We had had almost two years where the hits just kept on coming - relentlessly! An intense experience for all, which involved much recording, making all those cracking videos, heaps of TV work everywhere, Japanese car ads, wanting America, mortgages, marriages, movies, money and tons and tons of touring (which was rapidly losing its lustre for some)".

He continued: "I was drained and personally foundering. I perceived Matthew, who had been our agent, as being quietly solid and balanced and a counterpoint to my own often volatile relations with the artist. He proved to be so. He took up the slack and then held the reins while maintaining that air of quiet confidence which, in my experience all those years ago, was such an attractive aspect of the man. It's very sad. I know he'll be missed".

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It was the British Press Awards this week, and the Telegraph dominated as a result of last years "all MPs are money grabbing bastards" scoop. So no surprise there, really. The winners were:

Journalist Of The Year: Will Lewis, Editor-In-Chief, Telegraph Media Group
Reporter Of The Year: Paul Lewis, The Guardian
Foreign Journalist Of The Year: JS Tissainayagam From Sri Lanka
Foreign Reporter Of The Year: Marie Colvin, Sunday Times
Political Journalist Of The Year: Robert Winnett, Daily Telegraph
Specialist Journalist Of The Year: Jason Lewis, Mail On Sunday
Feature Writer Of The Year: Tanya Gold, The Guardian
Business And Finance Journalist Of The Year: Iain Dey, Sunday Times
Sports Journalist Of The Year: Mike Atherton, The Times
Showbiz Reporter Of The Year: Dan Wootton, News Of The World
Columnist Of The Year: Caitlin Moran, The Times
Interviewer Of The Year: Camilla Long, Sunday Times
Critic Of The Year: Quentin Letts, Daily Mail
Young Journalist Of The Year: Sheera Frankel, The Times

Photographer Of The Year: Stefan Rousseau, Press Association
Sports Photographer Of The Year: Andy Hooper, Daily Mail
Cartoonist Of The Year: Peter Brookes, The Times

Newspaper Of The Year: Daily Telegraph
Regular Supplement Of The Year: You, Mail On Sunday
Special Supplement Of The Year: MPs' Expenses, Daily Telegraph
Digital Innovation: Suntalk, The Sun

Scoop Of The Year: Daily Telegraph, MPs' Expenses
Campaign Of The Year: Mps' Expenses, Daily Telegraph
Cudlipp Award For Campaigning Popular Journalism: Andrew Penman And Nick Sommerlad, Investigate, Daily Mirror

Judges' Award: Heather Brooke
Journalists' Charity Award: Walter Greenwood

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Elliott Smith fans (well, some of them, at least) are reportedly outraged by the news that the late singer-songwriter's debut album, 'Roman Candle', will be re-released in remastered form next month. The outrage has been unleashed online despite the fact that none of said fans have actually heard the new version yet. It seems said fans are concerned that the charm of the album will be lost in cleaning up its lo-fi production.

Larry Crane, a friend of Smith and archivist for his estate, who has overseen the new version of the album told Spinner: "I'm getting pretty much bashed around there on message boards for something nobody's heard. Some people are like, 'Oh my god, how can you do that?' I'm not smashing it and flatlining it like a Metallica record. My first thought was: 'Am I doing the right thing?' I said to my girlfriend: 'My god, should I be doing this?' She said: 'Are you making it sound better?' I said: 'I guess.' She said: 'How can that be wrong?'"

On the remastering process (or rather mastering, it having never actually been through the mastering process before its original release), Crane added: "I really felt that the album, some of the guitar squeaks when he was changing chords - he used really cheap mics on the record - some sounds are really jarring. I was very timid at first, but the more I listened and altered the volume on those squeaks a tiny bit; you can still hear them - they kind of punctuate the phrases and such - but all of a sudden the guitar playing just became more clear. I know it's going to sound different to some people, but I cannot imagine that they'd have a problem with what we've done".

'Roman Candle' and a new version of Smith's posthumous 'From A Basement On The Hill' will be released by Kill Rock Stars on 5 Apr.

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Swedish indie poppers Love Is All will release their third album, 'Two Thousand And Ten Injuries' on 5 Apr, via Polyvinyl Records.

The album was written and recorded while the band were between record deals, which, they say, gave them a sense of freedom they had not experienced for many years. Explains bassist Johan Lindwall: "We didn't have a record contract, and we didn't even look for one. Therefore, the record developed completely on our premises and conditions and only because it was fun".

The results are apparent in album track 'Kungen', the video for which you can see here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=zl1PqiluWic

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Akon has been refused entry to Sri Lanka following that previously reported riot by Buddhists protesting against an upcoming concert by the R&B star.

As previously reported, on Monday 200 people gathered outside the headquarters of the Maharaja Broadcasting And Television Network, which was sponsoring the planned concert. The group were angry that the video for Akon's David Guetta collaboration, 'Sexy Chick', features scantily clad women dancing in front of a statue of the Buddha, and injured four Maharaja employees by throwing rocks at their building.

Organisers of the concert, the American Talent Agency, subsequently postponed the show, which was due to take place next month, saying in a statement: "Due to the recent events that transpired yesterday in Sri Lanka, we have decided to postpone Akon's upcoming show. We are working diligently with the local promoters to ensure the safety of both our talent and the fans before committing to a new date. Akon is looking forward to performing for the people of Sri Lanka and we hope to have this situation resolved in the coming weeks".

However, shortly afterwards, the Sri Lankan government put paid to that idea by announcing that it would not grant the singer a visa to enter the country. The Director General of the government's Information Department, Anusha Palpita, told reporters: "Taking into consideration the allegations levelled against the singer Akon, the government had decided not to issue him a visa to conduct the concert in Sri Lanka, [due to him] defaming Buddhism in his music videos".

Akon, meanwhile, issued an apology for the offence caused, saying in a statement: "I was not aware that the statue was even on the set of the video until now. I would never set out to offend or desecrate anyone's religion or religious beliefs. I myself am a spiritual man, so I can understand why they are offended, but violence is never the answer and I am disheartened to hear about what happened yesterday in Sri Lanka".

You can watch the super spiritual video for 'Sexy Chick' (or 'Sexy Bitch', to give it its album title) here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9hazmsUxrM

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Charlotte Gainsbourg has never played live in the UK before, or so I'm told. However, she will correct that situation later this year by playing a headline show at the Shepherds Bush Empire in London on 22 Jun, and a set at the Latitude Festival in July. Well done her.

Gainsbourg is also set to release another single from last year's Beck-produced 'IRM' album. 'Time Of The Assassins' will be in stores on 10 May with remixes Outlines, Matthew Dear, Gentlemen Drivers and XXXchange.

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360 WEEKENDER, Egg, Kings Cross, London, 1-4 Apr: D Ramirez, Dennis Ferrer, Larry Tee, Ricki Montanari, Matt Tolfrey, Martinez and Jimpster are among the acts confirmed for this four day dance music event taking place over Easter weekend. www.egglondon.net

BERLIN FESTIVAL, Tempelhof Airport, 10-11 Sep: Fever Ray and LCD Soundsystem are among the first acts announced for this year's Berlin Festival, along with Peaches, 2manydjs and Soulwax. www.berlinfestival.de

ELECTRIC PICNIC, Stradbally Hall, Stradbally village, nr Portlaoise, County Laois, Ireland, 3-5 Sep: Roxy Music, Leftfield and Massive Attack head up the latest acts confirmed to play the Irish music fest. Other acts added to this year's line-up include LCD Soundsystem, The National, Fever Ray, Mumford & Sons, Seasick Steve, Modest Mouse, Hot Chip and Crystal Castles. www.electricpicnic.ie

GLOBAL GATHERING, Long Marston Airfield, nr Stratford Upon Avon, Warwickshire, 30-31 Jul: 2manydjs, Chase & Status, Armin Van Buuren, Carl Cox and Above And Beyond are amongst the acts confirmed to play at this summer's tenth Global Gathering. The line-up also includes the likes of Eric Prydz, Steve Angello, Paul Oakenfold, Booka Shade and Simian Mobile Disco. www.globalgathering.com

GUILFEST, Stoke Park, Guildford, 16-18 Jul: Hawkwind, Hadouken!, Chase And Status, Kid Creole And The Coconuts and Draven have all been added to this years Guilfest line-up, joining the previously announced Orbital, Human League and Status Quo. www.guilfest.co.uk

LAND OF KINGS FESTIVAL, various venues, Dalston, London, 23 Apr: Fuck Buttons, Faze Action, Idjut Boys, Drums Of Death and New Young Pony Club are all set to play at the second Land Of King's Festival in Dalston, along with Cheetahs, The Detachments, Yuck and Soft Rocks. www.landofkings.co.uk

SUMMER SUNDAE WEEKENDER, De Montfort Hall & Gardens, Leicester, 13-15 Aug: Following yesterday's new additions, The Low Anthem, Tunng and Turin Brakes are the latest acts added to the Summer Sundae line-up. Other acts confirmed include the Invisible, Fanfarlo, Johnny Flynn, The Sussex Wit and Lissie. www.summersundae.com

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ALBUM REVIEW: Woodenbox With A Fistful Of Fivers - Home And The Wild Hunt (Electric Honey)
The latest band to be released by Glasgow student project/ultra indie label Electric Honey, Woodenbox With A Fistful Of Fivers are sure to get lumped in with the other successful indie bands to have come from North of the Border in the last decade or so, so the likes of Biffy Clyro, Snow Patrol, Belle & Sebastian and, erm, Moondial (so, not all successful then). But, luckily, Woodenbox don't sound remotely like any of their predecessors from Glasgow's indie scene, steering away from the banal prog of Biffy, the dull pomp of Gary Lightbody and co, and the lovely, but endemic (in Scotland anyway) twee pop of Belle & Sebastian.

Instead, it's the more dynamic, pleasantly popular bands of Scotland's current music scene that show their influence here, with Frightened Rabbit's tempestuous folk and Phantom Band's literate grim combining with some 70s-style horn led acoustic blues on a record that sounds like it's been around for years. In a good way, though.

None of 'Home And The Wild Hunt' is old hat by any respect, but its melodies and lyrical themes (certainly on stand-out 'Fistful Of Fivers') just come to you so perfectly formed - with Ali Downer's lead vocals a familiar, comfortable brogue too - it's easy to imagine your mum and dad taking to the dancefloor on their wedding night to these songs, the romantic joy perpetuated by each horn blast.

They'd maybe skip 'Letting Go' though, leaving such reflections to an audience just as well accommodated by such a spirited band. And one that hopefully won't go the way of Moondial. TM

Physical release: 5 Apr
Press contact: Triad Publicity

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Collecting society PRS For Music yesterday announced a restructure, which will result in some senior names departing the organisation. The revamp follows an operational review led by new CEO Robert Ashcroft. A press statement says that the restructure "will ensure that PRS for Music is fit for the future music world and able to be a more agile organisation, continuing its work supporting songwriters, composers and music publishers and protecting the value of creative content".

Moving forward the society will have two main divisions, Licensing to bring the money in, and Operations to pay it out to members. The former will be led by Jeremy Fabinyi, formerly MD of PRS's Recorded Media unit and the acting CEO before Ashcroft's appointment. The latter will be by led by Nial Stirling, previously MD of Professional Services.

In addition to the main two divisions, there will still be departments providing legal, HR, marketing, planning and finance services, which will work with both Licensing and Operations. What was previously called 'membership development' will be moved into marketing.

The main departures caused by the revamp are Jo Prowse, former MD of Membership & Operations, and Andrew Shaw, MD of Broadcast, Online & Recorded Media, who will leave the society straight away.

Ashcroft told CMU: "We have a great opportunity here to streamline our business and ensure that it is fit for purpose for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. At the heart of our business are our customers and members, and they require an efficient and effective organisation that both recognises the value of their creative talent and the need for cost-effective and simple licensing".

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Radio firm Your Media, set up last year, has gone into administration, taking its five stations off the air. Your Media bought Bath FM, Brunel FM, 3TR and the two QuayWest FM outposts after their previous owners, South West Radio, also went into administration last year.

Despite grand plans to expand through the launch of new web-only services, Your Media seemingly struggled to make the former SWR business work, hindered in part by OfCom objections to some of their revamp plans.

The stations went off the air rather suddenly yesterday at 5pm, four switching to an emergency music tape, 3TR broadcasting glorious silence. All staff were made redundant and assets removed shortly before the switch off.

According to Radio Today, the owners of the totally independent Star Radio Cheltenham are negotiating to buy Your Media's five licences, though that deal will require OfCom approval.

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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. Ellie Goulding - Starry Eyed
2. Mumford and Sons - The Cave
3. Vampire Weekend - Giving Up The Gun
4. Daisy Dares You feat Chipmunk - Number One Enemy
5. The Futureheads - Heartbeat Song
6. Florence and The Machine & Dizzee Rascal - You Got The Dirtee Love
7. Florence and The Machine - You've Got The Love
8. Rihanna - Rude Boy
9. Chiddy Bang - Opposite of Adults
10. 3OH!3 feat Katy Perry - Starstrukk
11. Biffy Clyro - Many Of Horror (When We Collide)
12. Gorillaz - Stylo
13. Owl City - Fireflies
14. Example - Won't Go Quietly
15. Lady Gaga feat Beyonce - Telephone
16. The Temper Trap - Sweet Disposition
17. Delphic - Halycon
18. Ke$ha - Blah Blah Blah
19. Owl City - Hello Seattle
20. Arctic Monkeys - My Propeller

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Oh dear, they're all coming out of the woodwork now. Following the previously reported lawsuit launched by producer Rob Fursari last week, who claims he is owed $35 million in unpaid royalties by Lady Gaga, a bassist who performed on the singer's debut album and co-wrote her song 'Disco Heaven' says he's not been paid either.

Unlike Fusari, however, Tommy Kafafian doesn't want to take things legal. Instead, he's going to get his own back on Gaga by becoming more famous than her. It's a plan that can't fail. He told The Star Ledger: "I don't wanna sue anybody. It's really not my style. I'm just gonna keep moving forward until Lady Gaga can't walk down the street without seeing my face or hearing my music".

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CMU's Budget update now, and aging West Country comedy folk band The Wurzels have issued a statement following Alistair Darling's announcement in yesterday's Budget that tax on cider will be raised by 10% above inflation from midnight on Sunday.

The band's Tom Banner and Pete Budd told CMU: "Having just heard the news we are all very upset that Scrumpy Cider, being one of the few pleasures that we cherish down here on the farm in the West Country, is being hit by such a tax rise. We all realise that, in these current times, we have to tighten the string on our trousers but we must admit that having to cut down on this local favourite leaves us feeling that we are being unfairly penalised, and we'll tell him something, he won't be the Darling bud of our May".

They continued: "We would like to offer our 50 years of experience of Cider drinking, and of playing within a cider community, to the government in an advisory capacity and the public can be assured that we would obviously register our interests in Cider before any lobbying commenced".

The Wurzels have a new album out in June, apparently.

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More City news, and Bono has been dubbed the "worst investor in America" by finance website 24/7 Wall Street because of his involvement in US equity firm Elevation Partners, an investment fund set up by the U2 rocker, former Apple CFO Fred Anderson and three equity experts, and named after the U2 song 'Elevation'.

24/7 Wall Street says that, through its large investments in smart phone firm Palm, media operation Forbes and property website Move.com, the equity set up has been involved in "an unprecedented string of disastrous investments which even bad luck could not explain".

According to the website, Palm's stock has "tanked" since Elevation got involved, Forbes' total value is now $100 million despite Elevation's $300 million investment in its online operations in 2006, while Move.com has lost 50% of its value since the equity types got involved. More recently it invested in a San Francisco-based user-generated business review website that has since been accused of extorting money out of local businesses in return for the sneaky editing of user reviews.

Of course, one assumes Bono isn't actively involved in the day to day operations of the fund he backs, but still, it's much more fun if we blame him personally for all the misguided investments because then we, like other media, can dub the U2 man the "worst investor in America". Given his poor record in City type dealing, it's a damn good job he managed to avoid all that Irish tax isn't it?

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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Georgina Stone
Editorial Assistant
Owen Smith
Approval Officer
Paul Vig
Club Tipper

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