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CMU Info
Top Stories
Bronfman steps down as Warner CEO
Winehouse forced to return charity donations
VP Records A&R chief murdered
In The Pop Courts
Liam sues Noel
Friendly Fires collaborator dies
Release News
Oneohtrix Point Never to release new album
My Toys Like Me announce new LP
Russian Circles detail new album
Gigs & Tours News
Nordic showcase Ja Ja Ja launches new website
St Vincent tour dates
The Music Business
Another death from Indiana State Fair Stage collapse
The Digital Business
Blackberry planning a streaming music service
Beyond Oblivion close to launching music service
And finally...
Brian Harvey becomes crime fighter
Fox News man apologises to Chris Brown

Hey, how were your weekends? I went to the pub, went to a gig, read a book, watched a film, and decided that 9/8 is my new favourite time signature. I think that's everything. The film was 'Departures', a Japanese production that won the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film in 2009. And deservedly so, I heartily recommend it to you now. The gig was LA2019, which I recommended to you here last week. That was also very good. Let's see if I can pull any more recommendations out of my sleeve, shall we?

01: Reading and Leeds. Marking the beginning of the end of the summer festival season, August bank holiday weekend brings with it the only dual site festival worth considering. OK, it may not be the most welcoming event, but it does have some fine acts on its line-up this year. Acts like Deftones, Pulp and The National on the main stage, an exclusive audio-visual DJ set from James Lavelle on the Dance Stage, and the likes of Fixers, boysetsfire, Big Deal, Rival Schools, Saul Williams, Henry Rollins, Patrick Wolf and Warpaint elsewhere.

02: Tom Waits setting the record straight. Gravel-gargling minstrel Tom Waits is this week poised to "set the record straight" on various scurrilous rumours that he's about to release a new album. Or alternatively, he'll just announce that he's about to release a new album. If it's of a studio variety, this will comprise his first LP proper (not counting live compilations, theatrical scores and such) since 2004's 'Real Gone'. But, let's not get ahead of ourselves. Those interested in seeing the record set straight, once and for all, should keep watch at Tom's website on 23 Aug.

03: ThreeWeeks. OK, this is the last week I'll bang on about this, because, yes, we've finally made it to the last week of the Edinburgh Festival 2011. It may not mean much to you, but it's significant when you work for a company that produces the most prolific media at the world's biggest arts festival. There's still one more issue of the printed newspaper to come, but while you wait for that, you can have a read of last week's edition, which was guest edited by Andrew Maxwell. As temporary leader of the operation, Maxwell interviewed Sammy J and Glenn Wool.

04: New releases. There are some physical releases of a few records that are already available digitally this week, for those of you who like holding things. All of them are well worth holding onto, as well. There's Toddla T's 'Watch Me Dance', The Deer Tracks' 'The Archer Trilogy Part 2' and Austra's remix EP. Live dangerously and buy them on vinyl, why don't you? Also out this week on all formats is the latest album from Stephen Malkmus And The Jicks, 'Mirror Traffic'. And if you only shell out for one sound recording this week, make it the new single from AlunaGeorge, 'You Know You Like It'.

05: Gigs. I want to go and see Deftones play at the Shepherds Bush Empire on Wednesday but I can't. That doesn't mean you shouldn't enjoy it, though. Well, it sort of does, actually. How about you try something another night? You could go and see Little Roy singing his reggae covers of Nirvana songs at the 100 Club on Thursday, or you could see Jeffrey Lewis in Brighton tonight. Or, hey, Sebadoh and Taking Back Sunday are both touring this week.

Next Monday is a bank holiday (in England and Wales, anyway), so I'll see you with the next Five Day Forecast two weeks from today. Please try to behave in my absence.

Andy Malt
Editor, CMU
"He's one of the greatest artists I've ever heard. To hear someone with an incredible body of work is very rare. It's very inspiring. I'm proud of him. He works real hard. He's just an incredible person, [and has] become a really close friend to me". Thus quoth rapper-turned-fanboy Drake on R&B auteur The Weeknd, whose new mixtape 'Thursday' came out last... er, well... Thursday.

Canadian singer-songwriter-producer Abel Tesfaye proved a magnet for critical plaudits when 'House Of Balloons', the first in a plotted trilogy of Weeknd mixtapes, came out earlier this year. 'Thursday' proves a fitting sequel to its acclaimed predecessor, hitting an unnerving note that resonates somewhere between the sublime and the sinister, between Tesfaye's fevered falsetto and the songs' pervasively chilly electronica, between an intimate, bedroom-studio production feel and the sheer arc of ambition described by mammoth tracks like 'The Birds Part 1', hypnotic Drake-collaboration 'The Zone' and ska-tinged closing saga 'Heaven Or Las Vegas'.

Anyway. Click here to pick up 'Thursday' for free. 'Echoes of Silence', the final portion of the Weeknd mixtape trilogy, is slated for an autumn release.

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How to make money out of music – both now and in the future, with a look at alternative investment and revenue streams, and a new approach to monetising artists and their music. Wed 7 Sep

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So, as sort of expected, Edgar Bronfman Jr has stepped out of the CEO role at Warner Music, though, contrary to the most prevalent rumour, he will not be replaced by his number two Lyor Cohen. Rather he will swap roles with Stephen Cooper, the long-time exec at Len Blavatnik's Access Industries, who became Chairman of Warner after Access completed its takeover of the company last month.

As CEO, Cooper will now oversee the day-to-day running of Warner Music. Meanwhile Bronfman Jr, as Chairman, is expected to focus his energies on the Access/Warner bid to buy EMI and, should that bid be successful, the regulatory process that will need to be navigated to merge the third and fourth biggest music companies in the world.

A combined Warner/EMI has been a long-term ambition of Bronfman Jr of course, and he's got experience here, having orchestrated the merger of Universal and Polygram in the late 1990s. Therefore it makes sense that he'd focus on a possible Warner/EMI consolidation.

Though, as we commented when rumours that this would become Bronfman Jr's role first circulated, it's not clear what would happen if EMI's current owners Citigroup knocked back the Warner offer for the UK-based music major and went with another bidder instead. It would possibly be the end of Bronfman Jr's major label career.

When Warner's board and key shareholders, led by Bronfman Jr himself, opted to sell their music company to Blavatnik there was speculation that the firm's then Chairman and CEO had spearheaded the deal, so to wipe clean the company's balance sheet to enable an EMI bid, thus allowing the long desired Warner/EMI merger.

However, newer rumours suggest the Blavatnik deal was actually pushed through by Bronfman's fellow shareholders, and that, now he no longer has a stake in the business - while he is still interested in creating Warner/EMI - the former CEO has less interest in running Warner Music day-to-day.

For those within the Warner empire, Cooper's appointment as CEO could mean that the recent change in ownership will have wider implications for the firm's internal structure than many initially anticipated, though it seems likely any major restructure won't begin until the outcome of the Access/Warner bid for EMI is known.

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Mitch Winehouse has been forced to return donations intended for the Amy Winehouse Foundation, which he announced he would set up in the wake of his daughter's death last month. Many fans sent cheques made out to the foundation, but it appears that someone else has already registered the company name, meaning they cannot be banked.

Winehouse wrote on Twitter last week: "We all have to bombard the tabloids' websites to put pressure on this dick head who stole our foundation name. Instead of concentrating on allocating funding I am having to send cheques back cos we haven't got [a] bank [account] in that name. Our solicitors are all over this, but it takes time. Meanwhile we can't get on with [the] foundation."

As previously reported, Winehouse revealed earlier this month that Amy's Camden home would become the headquarters of the foundation, telling The Mirror that it would focus on "causes close to her heart", which "could include help for children in trouble, kids suffering health problems, children's hospices and more".

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The head of A&R for Jamaican reggae label VP Records, Joel Chin, has been murdered. The 35 year old A&R exec and producer was shot dead as he drove up to his apartment last Tuesday night.

A statement from the label, issued last Wednesday, said: "It is with great sadness that VP Records must announce the passing of Joel Chin at the age of 35. Joel was shot last night outside his home in Stony Hill, St. Andrew in Jamaica. The cause was not immediately known". Police have not commented on a possible motive, and their investigations are ongoing.

The VP Records statement continued: "The grandson of VP Records founder Vincent Chin, son of famed Reggae producer Clive Chin and nephew of the owners of VP Records, Chris and Randy Chin, Joel literally grew up in the reggae business and put his vast knowledge and connections at the service of the music he loved passionately. An accomplished producer, Joel had moved from New York to Jamaica two years ago to spend more time on music production, songwriting and developing rising talents. Joel wrote hit songs for many artists such as Elephant Man and Etana among many others".

Various reggae stars have paid tribute to Chin, among them Sean Paul, who tweeted: "As another bright light fades, we give thanks for life and reminisce. RIP Joel Chin".

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Feuding has been a staple of the Gallagher brothers' public relationship for almost 20 years now (and presumably their private one for much longer), but they're still finding ways to keep it fresh. That their sibling rivalry caused the end of Oasis kept it interesting for a while, but now Liam has taken things up a gear by suing his brother for libel.

Liam is specifically taking his brother to court over recent comments Noel made about the reasons behind their band's split in 2009. As previously reported, Noel said in a press conference that they'd fallen out because his brother wanted to place advertisements for his clothing company, Pretty Green, in their tour programme. He also claimed that Liam had forced the band to pull out of a headline slot at V Festival's Chelmsford leg that year because he had a hangover. Liam says it was due to a sudden bout of laryngitis.

In a statement issued on Friday, Liam said: "I have taken legal action against Noel Gallagher for statements he made during the Electric Cinema press conference on 6 Jul during which he claimed Oasis pulled out of the 2009 V Festival Chelmsford gig because I had a hangover. That is a lie and I want Oasis fans, and others who were at V, to know the truth".

He added: "Noel also falsely stated that the demise of Oasis followed a massive row in which he claimed I demanded to advertise my clothing range Pretty Green in the Oasis tour programme. The truth is there was no such discussion or row between us. There are many reasons why Oasis split, but it had nothing to do with my clothing range".

Finally, he said: "I am used to being called all sort of things by Noel and I have in the past said things about him, but what Noel has alleged this time went way beyond rock n roll banter and questioned my professionalism".

Prior to Liam's announcement last week, Noel had told a journalist in a new interview that the band's split had actually been fairly amicable, which was something of a turnaround. He told The Sun: "After I quit, we had to fold because we were all partners in various businesses - not businesses like selling oranges off the back of a truck, but a touring company and the record label had to close, which took a while and all the money needed to be split. So there was all that fucking nonsense, but as break-ups go, to be honest it was quite amicable. Then Liam started doing interviews and then it was like... hmmm".

Meanwhile, on Saturday, The Sun published a photograph supposedly taken at the 2009 V Festival in Staffordshire in the early hours of the day Oasis were due to headline the event in Chelmsford. In the photograph, Liam stands at the back of a group of people holding a can of Guinness aloft. He doesn't look much like he has laryngitis at that point.

The unnamed fan who took the picture told the tabloid: "After the gig in Staffordshire, Noel headed down to London. But Liam, other band members and his close friends stayed and had a party in his trailer. Liam had quite a few beers. He left at 3am to carry on elsewhere. He didn't seem to have anything wrong with his voice".

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Trumpet player Richard Turner, who is best known for his work with Friendly Fires, died last week aged just 27. The apparently healthy musician collapsed at the Brockwell Lido in London's Herne Hill after suffering a heart attack on Thursday. He was taken to King's College Hospital but attempts to resuscitate him failed.

Turner had recently released an album with his own band Round Trip, and ran a popular jazz night at the Con Cellar Bar in Camden. A strong swimmer, he completed the Great North Swim in June.

His brother Andy told the Evening Standard: "I last saw my brother the Monday before he died. We had just had an amazing weekend swimming in the sea in Dorset. Rich was a really sociable guy and an amazing musician. Everyone was just bowled over by his talent".

In a statement, Friendly Fires said: "Rich played trumpet in our live gigs on and off for three years. He was an exceptional musician and his contributions to our shows will be hugely missed".

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Oneohtrix Point Never, the alternative guise of Ford & Lopatin man Daniel Lopatin, has confirmed that he will release a new album entitled 'Replica' via Mexican Summer on 7 Nov.

Summing up the LP with the utmost of concision, he says this: "'Replica' has as much to do with environmental, broadcasted, and club sounds as it does with more direct musical influences". So that's that, then.

Following a slot at this year's Bestival, Oneohtrix will play a show at London's Rhythm Factory on 17 Sep.

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Despite suffering a somewhat disastrous stint of studio break-ins, band-member departures and various other setbacks in the wake of their debut album 'Where We Are', resilient rave-rock types My Toys Like Me have managed to make a new LP.

Entitled 'Come On Sunshine', it's due for release on 5 Sep. Till then, you'll have to make do with a free download of sultry album track 'Matador', available here via SoundCloud.


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Since delivering an in-studio progress report earlier this year, instrumental trio Russian Circles have recorded their forthcoming fourth album and named it 'Empros'. They plan to release the finished product via Sargent House on 25 Oct.

In the stead of any audible previews, here's a tracklist to muse over:

Praise Be Man

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To coincide with the return of Nordic music showcase night Ja Ja Ja next month, its organisers have launched a new website covering new bands from the Nordic region. Content for the site will be handled by the team behind The Line Of Best Fit, which pretty much guarantees it'll be of high quality, I think.

The first gig in the latest series will take place at Hoxton Bar & Kitchen in London on 29 Sep. Curated by Record of The Day, the line-up will feature Sondre Lerche from Norway, LCMDF form Finland, and Sykur from Iceland.

Get the lowdown on those bands and plenty more from the new website at www.jajajamusic.com.

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St Vincent's Annie Clark is to mark the 12 Sep release of her latest album, which bears the title 'Strange Mercy', with a fleet of European tour dates. She will appear with a full live band on these here occasions:

10 Nov: London, Queen Elizabeth Hall
11 Nov: Bristol, Fleece
12 Nov: Manchester, Deaf Institute
13 Nov: Workman's Club, Dublin
15 Nov: Glasgow, Stereo
16 Nov: Leeds, Brudenell Social Club

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A sixth person has died as a result of last week's stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair. Local media reported that 22 year old Jennifer Haskell had died of injuries suffered during the incident on Friday, and a member of her family subsequently confirmed that fact. A spokesman for the State Fair told reporters that the event's organisers expressed "its deepest sympathies to her family".

As previously reported, one of the Fair's main stages came tumbling down as a storm swept onto the festival's site while audience members awaited a concert from Sugarland. Five were killed instantly while dozens more were injured. Although unusually strong winds led to stage collapse, some have remarked that measures could have been taken to stop the tragedy, at the very least a faster evacuation of the site as the storm approached.

Following the Indiana State Fair stage collapse, and the deaths also last week at Pukkelpop in Belgium as an overwhelming storm hit their site, one experienced guitar tech and tour manager in the US has written an interesting blog post considering how such tragedies may be avoided in the future: guitarroadreport.blogspot.com/2011/08/stage-collapse-and-thoughts-and-nathan.html

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BlackBerry maker RIM is reportedly planning on launching its own subscription-based streaming music service, and has agreed deals with the four majors that should enable an early autumn launch, in the US at least.

According to CNET, the new service will link into RIM's BBM social networking platform, you know, the one that's so popular with rioters and looters, so that subscribers can recommend tracks to other music fans, or fellow rioters and looters. It is thought the monthly subscription fee for the new BlackBerry streaming music service will undercut the likes of Spotify and Rhapsody.

BlackBerry already offers a download service via a partnership with 7Digital, but the new offer will see it move into the streaming music domain for the first time.

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Digital music start up Beyond Oblivion says it is close to having its record label deals in place, and that it plans to launch its service to the public later this year under the brand name Boinc. It has also revealed that it won't sell the service directly to consumers, rather it will licence the product to smartphone and PC makers who will in turn bundle it in with their existing fees, thus making it appear free to the end user. The company says two such B2B deals are close to completion.

But what is the service itself? We knew Beyond Oblivion was operating in the digital locker space, but that it wasn't quite as simple as the basic online storage facilities for MP3s now offered by Amazon and Google. And that's right. According to the Financial Times, Boinc will be similar to the iMatch service Apple plan to launch, in the US, this autumn, whereby a bit of software scans your own MP3 folders, notes any tracks in there (oblivious of source), and then lets you stream those tracks from your Boinc device at any time without paying a fee or listening to ads.

Also according to the FT, Beyond Oblivion will charge a one-off licence fee to the device maker, which will in turn be bundled into the cost of the device, and a large portion of that money will be passed back to rights owners. In theory labels and publishers will get a royalty every time one of their tracks is played, which means that Boinc's financials are based on the theory that most users will not use the service at full capacity for the whole life of the device, otherwise the company could make a loss.

Boinc is expected to launch in the UK and US first.

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Brian Harvey was apparently too busy to get involved in the latest East 17 reunion, so they've forged ahead with him. But what is he up to? That's what everyone was asking. Eating baked potatoes can't take up that much of his time. Certainly not since "the accident". No, it turns out he's dedicated himself to fighting crime. Crime number one: People trying to make him pay for electricity.

The video below appeared online last week. It features Harvey quizzing police and staff from Southern Electric on why they're installing a pre-paid meter in his house against his will. Because he didn't pay his electricity bills, they tell him. But, ah, says Brian, the bills were addressed to a Mr H Harvey. Therefore, they should be taking this matter up with that guy, and not poor Brian.

It's some strange logic, but one he seems utterly convinced of.


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Hey, remember when Chris Brown beat up his then girlfriend Rihanna and drove off, leaving her unconscious on the pavement? Fox News' Andy Levy does. And he made a joke about it on Twitter last week.

But after reading the avalanche of not-at-all illiterate correspondence from both Brown and his fans that have come his way via the social network since the joke tweet, Levy has now, finally, realised that the Brown/Rihanna incident is all in the past and we really shouldn't talk about it any more. After all, Brown hasn't punched Rihanna once since February 2009, and not just because of the restraining order. And other than that occasion when he smashed up an office at the ABC TV network earlier this year, he's hardly been violent at all.

Quite rightly, Levy issued an apology to Brown for any offence caused on Fox News' 'Red Eye' show last week. Here it is in all its glory: www.youtube.com/watch?v=TOjUKwoHUyw

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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Aly Barchi
Editorial Assistant
Eddy Temple-Morris
Paul Vig
Club Tipper

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