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CMU Info
Top Stories
London's 100 Club facing closure
In The Pop Courts
Spanish courts back YouTube in Viacom-style case
Reunions & Splits
Barât: Dirty Pretty Things split due to cocaine comfort
In The Studio
Lostprophets preparing for fifth album
Release News
Beyonce preparing new single?
Liars announce live EP
Zach Hill album gets UK release date
Gigs & Tours News
Ke$ha announces first UK show
My Chemical Romance announce UK tour
School Of Seven Bells announce London show
Festival News
Festival line-up update
EP review: Spectrals - Extended Play (Moshi Moshi)
Talks, Debates & Conventions
MU to debate Pay To Play at In The City
The Music Business
PPL does reciprocal deal with New Zealand society
Reeperbahn Campus: How important are headliners to festivals?
The Digital Business
Reeperbahn Campus: Which bit of the cloud to licence?
The Media Business
Tyler and Lopez to join American Idol
And finally...
Katy Perry too sexy for toddlers

Guten Tag mein Freunden, and welcome to this edition of the CMU Daily, coming to you from the rather wonderful Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg. Who knew any one street could possess quite so many gig venues next to the other, with only the occasional sex shop or porn cinema separating them. Actually, I think it's more that occasional gig venues separate the sex shops, but the point is there are still loads of them, all around a pedestrianised square where everyone can loiter and chat. Perfect. And the weather, though perhaps not quite as good as Austin, Texas, has proven to be very hospitable, too. Quite how I found time to put together this Week In Five for you amid all these festivities is anyone's guess. But here it is.

01: Mute became independent again. The iconic London-based label's founder Daniel Miller announced he was launching a new record company, but that through a deal with EMI - who bought Mute in 2002 - he'll still be able to use his original venture's name. The new Mute will also get access to a chunk of the original label's catalogue from EMI, which will take a small stake in the new company. Miller, who has worked within the major since 2002, will continue to consult for them, mainly on projects involving some of the original Mute's biggest acts, like Depeche Mode, who will stay signed to EMI. CMU report | Billboard report

02: Live Nation said it would cut artist advances. The live music conglom's top man Michael Rapino was trying to convince an audience of City types in the US that, despite the slump in ticket sales in America this year, his company is a safe bet short term investment-wise. He said the slump had shown that ticket price rises had to stop, and that bigger artists had to accept that would mean promoters would not be able to sustain mega-bucks advance payments. He admitted that convincing artists and their agents of this was tricky, but said that some headway had been made. CMU report | Digital Production report

03: Zune announced its UK arrival. Microsoft's digital music service will be made available to UK consumers later this year for the first time, though not via the proprietary Zune player, which is still only available in the US. Rather, Zune will come to the Xbox, Windows 7-powered phones and PCs using the Windows operating system. An exact launch date is TBC. CMU report | Telegraph report

04: EMI went crazy for its Tinie Tempah lanyard. The major announced its hip hop signing's debut album would be available in a new format - you buy a lanyard and pass, and on the back is a code you can use to download the long player digitally. It's not really all that original - despite what EMI's press release claimed - but it will be interesting to see if the rapper's younger fans, who have no time for all the bumf that accompanies a CD, will pay to have something to hang round their necks. CMU report | RWD report

05: GEMA man said that Spotify is unlikely to be licensed in Germany, unless the digital service re-evaluates its business model. Alexander Wolf was speaking at the Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg, where he defended the German publishing collecting society's record for being particularly hardline when it comes to licensing digital services, especially so called cloud-based ones. "Not all digital business models can work", he stressed, with Spotify's current model covered by that statement in Wolf's mind. CMU report

Chris Cooke
Business Editor, CMU
VIGSY'S CLUB TIP: Closing We Love at Space Ibiza
I know I've already done one non-UK Club Tip this month, but this one really caught my eye.

The Ibizan superclub Space, in Playa d'en Bossa, is currently celebrating its season close with a series of final blow outs for its various nights, before one big final weekend-long party next weekend. This Sunday it's the turn of We Love to bow out. And my, what a line-up for a send off: Aphex Twin's first ever appearance on the island, Basement Jaxx, Simian Mobile Disco, Jeff Mills, James Zabiela, Joris Voorn, Paul Woolford and many others. This won't be one for the faint hearted; it's going to be Radio Rental.

While you're there (we're all flying out to the White Isle for this, yes?), don't forget to savour other flavours on Bora Bora beach bar, or DC10 or Km5, all of which are not too far away.

Sunday 26 Sep, Space, Playa d'en Bossa, Ibiza, crazy times and a whopping 65 Euro entry, more info from www.spaceibiza.com

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The 100 Club venue on London's Oxford Street is apparently facing closure as costs spiral out of control. The venue, which has occupied its current site in various forms since 1942, is noted for putting on early gigs by bands who have gone on to fame and fortune, and was a focus of the late seventies punk scene. But in recent years it has reportedly seen rents rise to more than £13,800 per month, not to mention another £4000 per month in business rates.

Speaking to the Evening Standard, the venue's boss, Jeff Horton said: "In 1985, when I took over, the rent was barely £11,000 [a year]. In the US, the rents are frozen at certain venues that have a bit of heritage. Here it's a total free-for-all. It makes me so angry. The government, Westminster Council and even some of the commercial landlords say they want to help small businesses, they say they want to preserve London's uniqueness, they want to help multi-cultural venues. Yet we're all that and all these organisations have all dumped on us from a great height".

The Musicians' Union has also spoken out against the potential closure. The organisation's Assistant General Secretary Horace Trubridge told CMU: "This is yet another example of an extremely popular venue threatened with closure due to financial pressure. The club is as popular as ever and is a part of London's heritage - it would be a travesty if it were to close. The MU will be campaigning to save the 100 Club and we urge all music fans to join us".

Horton told the Standard that the 100 Club would close this Christmas unless a buyer or major sponsor can be found.

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A Spanish federal court has ruled that YouTube is not liable for copyright infringement, even though it often hosts unlicensed content uploaded by its users.

Judges were convinced that, because the web firm operates a take-down system, whereby it blocks unlicensed content if and when it is made aware of it, there should be no liability. The Google-owned web service also discussed its efforts to introduce an automated content-filter system for the benefit of content owners while fighting a lawsuit brought by Spanish broadcaster Telecino.

Responding to the ruling, Google wrote on its blog yesterday: "This decision is a clear victory for the internet and the rules that govern it".

Telecino's argument was similar to that at the heart of the Viacom v YouTube case fought in the US courts over the last few years. Like Telecino, the MTV owner originally argued it was unfair that it should have to monitor YouTube's entire platform for the unlicensed upload of its content, when it is Google which benefits from any advertising generated between said content being uploaded, spotted and removed.

That said, with US courts generally ruling that YouTube's current takedown system is sufficient for the web firm to has so called 'safe harbour' protection under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, Viacom's case actually focused more on allegations that in its early days YouTube bosses operated a deliberately sloppy take-down system because they knew unlicensed content drove the most traffic. Viacom, of course, also lost its case against the video website.

The Spanish ruling is interesting because European copyright systems, most pre-dating the internet, don't generally provide specific statutory 'safe-harbour' provisions for web firms. That said, the Spanish copyright system hasn't proven especially helpful for content owners pursuing (alleged) online infringers, so that this ruling would go in YouTube's favour isn't especially surprising.

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In a new interview with the NME, Carl Barât has said that his former band Dirty Pretty Things fell apart because he had fallen into a "comfort zone" of alcohol and cocaine abuse. Which at least makes a nice change from your band collapsing because your co-frontman is in a "comfort zone" of heroin and supermodels. Though possibly less exciting.

Barât told the music weekly: "I found myself in what can only be referred to as a comfort zone. A leather jacket, skinny jeans, bottle of whisky, coke, knowing I could play a few Libertines songs and 'Bang Bang You're Dead' to a dwindling and increasingly disappointed audience. That's a hard thing to realise".

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Lostprophets have revealed that they are gearing up to begin work on songs for their fifth album, the follow-up to this year's 'The Betrayed'. That album was a fraught affair, which saw the band scrap initial recordings and sack two producers along the way, before self-producing the finished product. As a result, they're hoping for a smoother ride this time around.

Bassist Stuart Richardson told Metal Hammer: "We're starting writing pretty soon. We're doing a no-pressure writing session in the next few weeks. Just to see what comes of it. We're not going in to write a single we're just going in to have some fun, see what comes out of it".

Mike Lewis, the band's guitarist, added: "When you know you have two months to write an album you stay in your comfort zone a bit, whereas if you just go in and write music for fun that almost takes us back to when we wrote [debut album] 'The Fake Sound Of Progress'".

Lewis also hinted that the next album may see the band modify their sound: "We've been a band for ten years. We've got our four albums, almost book-ended with the heavier records. That chapter's closed. This next time we're wondering whether we should self-produce again. After 'The Betrayed' we thought it sounded amazing, but we needed to go with someone else to find out we needed to do it ourselves".

Which is interesting stuff and all, but what about the photograph that appeared on Perez Hilton's Unrated Perez blog earlier this month, which appears to show the band's vocalist Ian Watkins giving another man a blowjob? That's what you really want to know about, right?

Quizzed about the photograph by Metal Hammer, Watkins claimed to have created the image himself in Photoshop. He said: "I do have a first in Graphic Design, which is essentially Photoshop... that's all I'm saying. I was happy with it. And ultimately if you trace everything back to the source, it's gotta come from somewhere hasn't it? I got my shit locked down like a master, so nothing's getting leaked. It worked better than I ever could have imagined and the fact that Perez picked it up and stuff is amazing".

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According to producer Los Da Mystro, Beyonce will release a new single next month. Though he later said she might not. The track in question is apparently written and produced by The Dream, who was also responsible for 'Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)'.

Los Da Mystro tweeted yesterday: "Listening to new Beyonce record Dream wrote... Fucking INSANE! Wow!! She about to kill the game again! Had to listen again!! Y'all [will see] in three weeks!"

Later he added that people shouldn't quote him on the claim that we're now three weeks from the single's release (oh well): "That's what they're saying now... But it is the music business. Could be sooner or later".

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Liars have announced that they will release a five track live EP recorded at their show at London's Shepherds Bush Empire in May next week.

'Live At Shepherds Bush Empire' will be released on 27 Sep, followed by a new single from their 'Sisterworld' album, 'Proud Evolution', in October.

The tracklist for the live EP is:

Proud Evolution
The Overachievers
Clear Island
A Visit From Drum

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Hella drummer Zach Hill's previously reported second solo album, featuring collaborations with guests such as Devendra Banhart, No Age, Prefuse 73 and Deerhoof's Greg Saunier, will be released by Sargent House on 13 Dec. It's called 'Face Tat'.

In the meantime, you can download the first two tracks from the album, 'Memo To The Man' and 'The Primitives Talk', now for free.

Memo To the Man: www.refused.tv/zh/MemototheMan.mp3
The Primitives Talk: www.amazon.com/dp/B0041EO5ZM/

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Pop type Ke$ha has announced her first ever UK live show. It will take place at London's Shepherds Bush Empire on 14 Dec.

Tickets go on sale today.

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My Chemical Romance have announced UK tour dates to coincide with the release of their forthcoming new album, 'Danger Days: The True Lives Of The Fabulous Killjoys'. The shows will give fans a chance to see the band in smaller venues (though still by no means tiny) than they usually play.

The album will be released on 22 Nov, following the ridiculously titled first single from the LP, 'Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)', which is due on 6 Nov. Tickets for the shows went on sale this morning.

Tour dates:

23 Oct London, Hammersmith Apollo
24 Oct: Manchester, Apollo
25 Oct: Edinburgh, Corn Exchange

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Have you seen School Of Seven Bells live yet? Have you? Well, either way, you should go and see them play at Heaven in London on 8 Nov. It would be silly not to, really.

In other SIIVB news, the band release a new single, 'Heart Is Strange', taken from their second album, 'Disconnect From Desire, on Monday. The single comes with a remix of the title track by the brilliant Pantha Du Prince, plus a remix of album track 'I L U' by fellow Brooklynites Phantogram, which you can download for free here: soundcloud.com/fulltimehobby/school-of-seven-bells-i-l-u-phantogram-remix

When School Of Seven Bells guitarist Benjamin Curtis compiled a Powers Of Ten playlist for CMU Weekly earlier this year, he described Phantogram as his "favourite band around". Check out those words and the full playlist here: www.thecmuwebsite.com/playlists/schoolofsevenbells.html

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ROSKILDE, Denmark, 30 Jun - 3 Jul: Getting in early, the Roskilde festival has confirmed that Iron Maiden will play the event next year, following on from their last appearance in 2003. The next round of tickets will go on sale on 1 Dec. www.roskilde-festival.dk/uk

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EP REVIEW: Spectrals - Extended Play (Moshi Moshi)
Each of this EP's seven tracks attempt to combine the lo-fi garage rock of Best Coast et al with Phil Spector's pop nous. Though, unfortunately, 'Extended Play' is more party wall than wall of sound.

That's not to say Spectrals are without charm; 'Chip A Tooth (Spoil A Smile)' is a delectable slice of reverb heavy mope-pop and '7th Date' plink-plonks away like an out-take from Spector's 'A Christmas Gift For You'.

But, though they crib from the right places, the band would do well to be less in thrall of pop music's past. JAB.

Physical release: 10 Oct

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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The Musicians' Union will lead a debate at next month's In The City convention in Manchester on the concept of 'pay to play', the thing where grass-roots promoters insist on artists committing to a minimum income clause in their booking contract, meaning the band may have to cover any losses if not enough tickets are sold. It's a system that basically shifts some or all of the risk from the traditional risk taker, the promoter, to the artist themselves. And it's not something the MU has been especially happy with in the past.

Says MU Assistant General Secretary Horace Trubridge, who will chair the panel: "The Musicians Union supports musicians and likes to see them paid for their commercial efforts. We don't like to see them having to pay to go about their work. Some musicians not only pay to attend and play their own gigs, but they pay more than the punters coming through the door, and that can't be right. Some promoters don't actually like promoting and pass that part of their job onto the musicians by enforcing minimum ticket sales. This is not promoting as we know it, this is pay-to-play".

That said, Trubridge admits that, while the MU has, in the past, been against all forms of pay to play, following some research by their newly formed gigs section they are now willing to accept that some such deals might have their merits. He continues: "The MU recognises that it's really tough out there. Unless you are an established artist, you're going to need to do deals in order to get the gigs to build up your fan base and launch your career. The MU will still oppose deals which leave musicians out of pocket, but we are now advising members to have a look at what is being offered - some pay to play gigs result in the artist making a decent sum of money".

Guardian blogger Helienne Lindvall, BBC Introducing's Chris Long, Manchester promoter Jay Taylor and Elbow's Guy Garvey will join Trubridge for the ITC debate on 13 Oct. More about all things In The City can be found at www.inthecity.co.uk.

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UK recording rights collecting society PPL has announced a new reciprocal deal with its counterparts in New Zealand, Phonographic Performance New Zealand, or PPNZ. It is PPL's first such deal in the territory.

Says PPL's international man Laurence Oxenbury: "Signing this contract with New Zealand shows the full extent of PPL's reach around the world. We have agreements in many territories and are continuing to secure more. 2010 remains a strong year for PPL internationally and we are confident we will make further progress".

PPNZ's GM Mark Roach added: "Music is more accessible on a global level than ever before, which is why it is important to ensure that repertoire owners and makers are correctly and efficiently represented by music licensing companies worldwide. This agreement is a perfect example of how two territories separated by tens of thousands of miles can work co-operatively to bring about positive outcomes for our respective rights holders".

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It's a commonly asked question in festival circles: just how reliant is a major music event on the acts that top its bill for pulling in the crowds and flogging tickets?

The holy grail for every promoter, of course, is to build a 'brand' for their festival that attracts sell-out crowds oblivious of line-up. Glastonbury used to be presented as an example of such a festival brand, though its ticket sales wobble in 2009 possibly tarnished its reputation in that regard. But with pretty much every festival promoter lamenting the ever increasing fee demands made each season by top-level talent - and/or their agents - do some festivals have brands that can succeed without A-list headliners in place?

This was one of the questions posed to the festival panel at the Reeperbahn Campus Conference in Hamburg yesterday, with festival directors from across Europe on hand to answer. Their conclusion - "yes but not really", I reckon.

"There are other ways to create interest in a festival other than paying big money to big headliners", advised Christof Huber of Switzerland's OpenAir St Gallen festival and the pan-European festivals organisation Yourope.

"I think festivals often fail to make enough capital out of their smaller bands who collectively possess a big fanbase" he continued. "In the internet age, with blogs and social media, that kind of activity is easier. And then there are creative ways to stand out. For example, I do admire the All Tomorrows' Parties guest curator concept. But it's about balance".

Agreeing with the 'balance' thing was Eric van Eerdenburgh of the Dutch festival Lowlands, who had already told the Reeperbahn audience that his festival sold out this year before any line-up information had even been announced.

"Yes the atmosphere of your event is very important" he told us, but, he conceded "line up, including headliners, is, nevertheless, very important. Part of your brand - the thing that helps you sell out all your tickets in a few days - is your reputation for delivering a good line-up. People trust you to deliver, so buy tickets without knowing who you've got. But if you failed to deliver one year, you'd see your ticket sales hit the next".

So, if headliners - while only part of the mix - are nevertheless very important, how can middle-sized and smaller boutique festivals continue to compete amid ever rising fee demands from the A-listers? The room looked to Rob Challace, director of the UK's Summer Sundae festival, but better known as an agent with London agency Coda.

"If you're a small event but with a good brand, be upfront with agents" he advised. "I tell them from the start what my budget is, and stress the event can't happen if I don't keep my artist costs within that budget. If you've got a great event that is a pleasure to play, many agents and artists will be willing to work with you. And if not, don't book them, move on to someone else".

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"If you look back at the last five years there is only one solid digital music service from a business point of view, and that is Apple iTunes". If you're the sort of person who wishes participants in music business panels would just say what they really think, then ask your convention organiser to book Alexander Wolf from German collecting society GEMA, he doesn't beat around the bush.

"There are other interesting propositions out there, of course", he conceded. "But so far only Apple have a model that actually generates revenue, for them and for content owners. And their success, in part, was because they started by asking 'how can we sell music' rather than 'how can we give it away'".

Wolf was speaking yesterday as part of a panel at the Reeperbahn Campus on so called 'cloud-based' music services, in which emerging digital business models - like digital lockers, tethered downloads and Spotify-style streaming services - were being debated. Apple's iTunes, of course, is not "in the cloud". But cloudy things are starting to compete with the uber download store, and taking some music fans away from Apple. But do these services have a business that can ultimately pay content owners and deliver a profit?

GEMA, of course, is known for being among the most demanding of all the world's collecting societies when it comes to licensing new digital services, and has been very vocal in recent years about its frustrations with Google and YouTube, while also leading the way when it comes to shifting the anti-piracy battle away from traditional P2P makers to file-distribution platforms like Rapidshare.

"We must talk to the people behind each new service", Wolf admitted. "But it's not true that every digital business model proposed is going to work, and that has to be our starting point. I'm not saying our Apple relationship has been 100% perfect, but our licensing negotiations with them were constructive from the start. Whereas Google and YouTube set up their service and then came to do the deal, starting by offering very little".

With the only digital music provider on the panel - German-based Simfy - licensed by GEMA, and therefore no one to argue Google's corner, it was easy to be convinced by Wolf's argument.

After all, as session moderator Steve Mayall of MusicAlly points out, it's no secret that many digital entrepreneurs who come looking for a low-cost licensing deal aren't really interested in creating an innovative platform that helps to sell music, or even a product that is technically innovative; rather they want to build a web business that can be sold for millions to a clueless equity group or media mogul in two years time. Isn't Wolf and his hardline collecting society just protecting the interests of the songwriting community against web-savvy businessmen looking for a quick buck?

"If I play Devil's advocate for a minute", Oke Gottlich of digital distributor finetunes interjected, "there is an argument that because GEMA is so tricky to get on board, some of the more compelling digital services just won't launch here in Germany. And that's sad, for music fans, and for rights holders, whether they be artists, labels or GEMA itself". Basically, hardline GEMA could be shooting itself in the foot; after all, the Googles of this world may not be offering anything like your desired royalty rates, but refuse to do the deal and you earn nothing. Though, as Wolf says, surely that doesn't mean you should simply licence everything.

However, the only big service not currently operating in Germany, Wolf argued, is Spotify. And they, the GEMA man reckons, don't currently have a business model worth considering. Ending with another bold statement, Wolf concluded: "To be honest, unless they get a new business model, I can't see Spotify being licensed here".

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As expected, Aerosmith man Steven Tyler will be among the new judges to join the revamped 'American Idol' show next year following Simon Cowell's decision to quit the programme to go launch 'X-Factor USA'. Rumours that Tyler had signed up to the show had been rife for weeks, and his bandmate Joe Perry basically confirmed a deal had been done at the start of the month.

Also joining the show as a regular judge is Jennifer Lopez, it was confirmed on Wednesday. Rumours she would replace Ellen DeGeneres, who announced she was leaving the programme after just one season in July, have been circulating since August. The new look show will also have a regular 'in-house mentor' in the former of Universal exec and US record industry veteran Jimmy Iovine.

Confirming the new appointments, the show's broadcaster Fox said none of the new regulars would try to fill Cowell's Mr Nasty role, and that instead the TV firm hoped the new line-up would lead to a whole new feel for their pop talent show. Opinion seems to be divided among TV critics and the show's online fans as to whether that's what the people want and, therefore, whether the new line up will see the programme's rating's continue to decline, or whether it could lead to a new boost in the franchise's fortunes.

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So, I may not have been able to think of anything to say about Katy Perry's 'Sesame Street' appearance the other day, but it seems concerned parents have been able to think of plenty.

As previously reported, the video of Perry performing a rewritten version of her song 'Hot N Cold' with the kids' show's Elmo character went online this week, ahead of its planned TV airing on New Year's Eve. However, some have apparently complained that the singer's outfit shows off too much cleavage and is therefore unsuitable for young children. I can find no words to describe how utterly fucking insane this is.

The makers of 'Sesame Street' said that they had decided not to give the clip a TV airing due to "feedback we've received". Initially they said it would remain on YouTube, but it has now been removed. However, it is still available on Perry's on YouTube channel, so you can, er, check for yourself: youtu.be/YHROHJlU_Ng

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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Paul Vig
Club Tipper
Tom Aldridge
Russell Brand
Photo Editor

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