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There's a pervasive flavour of the balmy suburban idyll to Real Estate's second album, 'Days', which was warmly received upon its release via Domino last month. The natural successor to Real Estate's eponymous 2009 debut, 'Days' was recorded in a rustic rural studio, taking around five months to complete. Set to play London's Scala on 6 Dec, they were so kind as to compile a Powers Of Ten Playlist more>>
London-based duo Crushed Beaks are due to release their debut single next week through the Too Pure Singles Club. The two tracks, 'Close-ups' and 'Sun Dogs', were apparently described as "irresponsibly loud" by an engineer at Abbey Road Studios. I'm not sure about that, but they do feature some pretty noisy guitar, with echo-y, layered vocals fighting to cut through to the front more>>
- Google Music launches
- Bieber paternity suit dropped, but baby claims remain
- Trey Songz sued over catchphrase
- Imagem to represent Elvis publishing catalogue
- Dre to go on hiatus
- New Tyler, The Creator album to be "weird hippy music"
- Maccabees debut new single, album teaser
- 120 Days announce album
- Ex-Gallows frontman announces first show with new band
- Festival line-up update
- Gorillaz do stuff with Converse
- Vivendi financials impress despite some slips
- Major conterfeit CD operation discovered
- Leeds fanzine launches label
- Bull & Gate up for sale
- Distributor pulls over 200 labels off streaming services
- Jackson deathbed removed from auction
Domino is seeking a publicist to join its growing promo department. The successful applicant would be responsible for creating dynamic print and online campaigns for a number of artists on the Domino roster. A knowledge of Domino, its artists and labels (Weird World, Double Six, Rekords Rekords) and an ability to be a good team worker are a must. The ideal candidate would have a huge enthusiasm for music and media, and be skilful in spreading that enthusiasm to others. Previous PR experience is necessary.

Applicants should send a CV and cover letter to: [email protected]

Closing date is November 30
In House Press is a music press and promotion company based in Manchester, UK. We represent a varied range of artists to national press, online, radio and TV including Avi Buffalo, Beth Jeans Houghton, Deerhoof, Donovan, Errors, Field Music, Fuck Buttons, The Go! Team, Gold Panda, Los Campesinos!, Low, Nathan Fake, Panda Bear, The Phantom Band, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, Toro Y Moi, Tracey Thorn and Tunng.

We are looking for a music press officer to join our team and look after all aspects of music press. The position offered is based in Manchester and full-time with a competitive salary based on experience.

To apply please send a cover letter and CV to: [email protected]
Eventim UK is part of CTS Eventim AG, the leading ticketing company in Europe with operations in 20 countries selling more than 100 million tickets to over 140,000 rock & pop, sports, classical music and other events every year.

We are looking for an experienced Marketing Manager to join our team in London and look after all aspects of marketing. You should have experience of digital marketing, social media, affiliate and partner management, and content generation. You should also be able to implement a strategy, develop marketing campaigns and build brand awareness.

A passion for live entertainment is essential.

To apply please send a cover letter and CV to: [email protected]

So, Google Music proper is here, people. Well, it is in America. But hey, we got Spotify first, plus we managed to offload Piers Morgan on that lot as a "serious journalist", ha, I think we're ahead.

Anyway, as expected the web giant announced its big music offer in LA yesterday, transforming the digital locker service Google launched earlier this year - that time without the music companies on board - into a fully fledged, fully (nearly) licensed, download, cloud storage, mobile play, social media recommendation and artist profile service, backed by three of the four majors and most of the independents, including, crucially, the digital rights body representing the bigger indies, Merlin. So, despite talk of Google having to put its music offer live with large portions of the mainstream music catalogue missing, in the end only Warner's recordings aren't included, and I think all of us, at some point, has had to put a digital music service live without Warner on board.

I think it's fair to say response to Google's big music announcement has been mixed. Little was announced that we weren't expecting, and in reality the slick new platform doesn't really offer anything not already on the digital music market. And all of this has been a very long time coming, we having expected Google to launch something like this on various occasions over the years when other "big music announcements" were promised. Plus, Apple-style, everything on the all new Google Music is pretty locked to the Google platform, rather than integrating other social media and music services.

But, arguably, no one other digital music service currently offers the combination of functionality Google's new platform will provide. And there will be no subscription fees, not even for the digital locker element (the Google locker was free during beta, but subscription charges had been expected long term). And by being fully integrated with the Android Market store the reach is potentially huge, as the number of Android-powered smart-phones around the world continues to rocket.

It was probably the potential of the Android integration that wooed the music companies in the end. Although most of the music rights owners already enjoy a good and lucrative relationship with Google's YouTube division, their past relations with the rest of the web giant have been mixed - many feel the company should be doing more to stop copyright infringing services from appearing in Google searches and from earning from Google ads, and most were very pissed off when the web firm announced the initial launch of its digital locker earlier this year without any label deals in place (even though, technically, no such deals were required for the beta offer).

Three other things stood out at the big announcement, though. First, having Merlin on board at launch is a coup, given many of the other big music launches have left the key indies out in the cold, despite the people behind said launches often claiming an affinity with the grass roots creative community.

Second, the social networking integration - although limited to Google's own Plus social network - will enable users to offer their followers a full track preview of any songs they buy and recommend. Google reps were very keen to stress how this was ground breaking. In Europe, of course, mflow has offered that service for sometime, and with limited success, although having the full-track-preview-of-peer-recommended-songs functionality integrated with a bigger music offer with an existing sizable user base will likely make its impact more noticeable.

And third, the artist hub will let self-releasing artists get their music into the Google Music platform from launch in a simple way, offering various bits of functionality akin to direct-to-fan service providers like Topspin and Bandcamp. If cleverly integrated with YouTube - the biggest streaming service on the net - and the new sell-through store the Google video site is launching, that could make quite a compelling combination of services for DIY talent.

There's exclusive content and free tracks galore as well, though that all that seemed rather run of the mill. In fact, while the various Google reps who took to the stage, to deliver their best Steve Jobs impressions (while sneaking looks at a stage-level teleprompter every 37 seconds), often implied they were leading some kind of revolution with their big music offer, as we say, pretty much everything Google Music will do is already being done pretty well elsewhere.

But, that's not to say that the fact Google has finally entered the market with a decent music service, and one that brings lots of functionality into one place, and which is extra-friendly to independent and self-releasing artists, and which is fully integrated with millions of smartphones, isn't important. Which leads us to the next big question of course - when, exactly, will this come to Europe?

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So, is the Bieber baby story - insanely irritating for the teen popster and his people, and a joy to behold for tabloid hacks everywhere - already over?

Well, yesterday it seemed so. TMZ revealed that Mariah Yeater, the American woman who claimed Justin Bieber fathered her young son during a brief sexual liaison in a toilet backstage at LA's Staples Center last year, had withdrawn the paternity lawsuit that kicked off this whole story.

Bieber, of course, has denied ever meeting Yeater, and after a bit of flapping by his reps the popster announced he'd take a paternity test to prove the claimant was lying. His lawyers added that once that was done they'd sue her for defamation.

Yesterday's TMZ report said Yeater's legal team had backed away from the case - despite insisting their client had "credible evidence" that Bieber was her child's father - possibly fearing the ramifications of the promised libel lawsuit.

But then another lawyer told reporters in Chicago that, while Yeater had withdrawn her actual paternity lawsuit, she hadn't withdrawn her claims, that they expected the Biebster to still take a paternity test when he returns to the US, and that they then hope to negotiate directly with the pop star without going to court.

Attorney Jeffery Leving told WGNtv: "She believes Justin Bieber is the father. Negotiations are going on right now with Bieber's counsel and we're trying to negotiate a private, secure DNA test with the same safeguards that would exist if there were a court order, but without a court order. This matter is not over".

So, even though I think we all expect that paternity test to prove Bieber isn't a philandering liar, this story isn't quite dead yet.

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Rapper Trey Songz and reality TV star Dave 'The Mogul' Hester, who appears on a US show called 'Storage Wars', have become locked in a legal battle over the world 'yup', which they both use as a catchphrase. Well, actually, they're arguing over the word "YUUUP!"

According to Fox News, it began when Hester trademarked the word in September, prompting Trey Songz's legal team to send Hester a cease and desist letter telling him to stop using the word on various items of merchandise. They claimed that "YUUUP!" is Songz's "signature sound". Hester responded by filing a lawsuit arguing that his use of "YUUUP!" as a catchphrase is "distinct and different" from Songz's use of "YUUUP!" as a catchphrase.

Hester is seeking undisclosed damages and a court order barring Songz from "interfering" with his use of the word. Yup.

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The US division of independent publisher Imagem Music has announced a deal to represent the Elvis Presley publishing catalogue on a worldwide basis.

The 1000+ song Elvis Presley Music/Gladys Music catalogue is co-owned by CKX subsidiary Elvis Presley Enterprises (in which Lisa Marie Presley still has a stake) and the families of late music publishing giants Jean and Julian Aberbach. Including songs like 'All Shook Up', 'Love Me Tender' and 'A Little Less Conversation', it's a catalogue that enjoys good sync business as well as record sale and public performance income.

Confirming the deal, Elvis Presley Enterprises CEO Jack Soden told reporters: "We are grateful that Elvis created such a significant amount of music during his lifetime. It's impressive how it continues to resonate with people around the world as new generations discover the king of rock n roll".

Meanwhile André de Raaff and Richard Stumpf, respectively CEO and US President for Imagem, said in a joint statement: "Elvis Presley defines rock n roll, and his songs are loved all over the world. We are thrilled and honoured to represent such a legendary body of work on a global basis, where we will ensure the songs are promoted and managed in a manner suitable for The King".

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You might think that, having spent almost ten years not completing work on his third studio album 'Detox', Dr Dre has been on something of a hiatus already. But you would be wrong. He has been very busy, and he doesn't appreciate your hounding of him, thank you very much. Well, maybe, he didn't actually say that. But he has said that he's been far too busy for far too long with this music malarkey, and he reckons he deserves a break once his current two projects (neither of which are 'Detox') are complete.

Here's what he actually said to WENN: "I'm working on Slim The Mobster and Kendrick Lamar. I think [when those are done] I'm gonna just wrap it up for a minute, because I've been working on music for 27 years now and the longest I've ever been out of the studio in 27 years has been two weeks. So, yeah, I feel like I'm gonna take a little bit of a break. I'm never gonna stop music, it's like air to me. [But] I'm [going to] take a little bit of a break. Enjoy some time with the family til I get that itch to get back in".

This doesn't necessarily mean that 'Detox' is on the back burner though. After all, Snoop Dogg recently said it was nearly finished, and he seemed quite sure of it. He told the NME: "I ain't never said it was almost finished. [Dre] might [have said that], but that's my first time I ever said it. I was always saying it was taking too long to get done. It feels good now. We've been working on it. It's almost finished. So that's coming out soon".

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Tyler, The Creator has said that his next album, 'Wolf', which he plans to release in May next year, will be "weird hippy music" less about "rape and cutting up bodies" and more about "money and buying shit". I know, that doesn't sound particularly hippy, but at least he's trying.

Speaking to Spin, the rapper said: "Talking about rape and cutting bodies up, it just doesn't interest me any more. What interests me is making weird hippy music for people to get high to. With 'Wolf', I'll brag a little more, talk about money and buying shit. But not like any other rapper, I'll be a smart-ass about it. Now it's just girls throwing themselves at me and shit, but I got a girl back home. People who want the first album again, I can't do that. I was eighteen, broke as fuck. On my third album, I have money and I'm hanging out with my idols. I can't rap about the same shit".

Read the full interview here: www.spin.com/articles/odd-future-new-undergrounds-loud-family-goes-road

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Oh, good. Those Maccabees are once again making excellent music for our ears to listen to. And what's more, they seem to have got over that lack of song title inspiration. Well, they've thought of a name for the album anyway - 'Given To The Wild'.

You can stream 'Pelican', the lead single from the new long player, below. Though very good, it has nothing whatsoever to do with big-billed water birds. Also below, a cryptic teaser trailer for the album itself, which is due for release on 9 Jan.



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Lauded Norwegian electro-rock quartet 120 Days are to release their imaginatively-titled second LP, '120 Days II', via Splendour on 5 Mar. You can watch the video for the album's final track, 'Osaka', and stream or download diskJokke's remix of it, below.



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Ex-Gallows frontman Frank Carter has announced his first live show with new band Pure Love. The band will perform at Bush Hall in London on 14 Feb, which seems fitting. They are also working on their debut album, having signed to Vertigo earlier this month.

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EUROSONIC NOORDERSLAG, De Oosterpoort, Groningen, Holland, 11-14 Jan: Benjamin Francis Leftwich, Fionn Regan, Jessie Ware, Tribes, Vondelpark and Zulu Winter are amongst the acts already handpicked by organisers of this annual festival and music business conference. Next year's new and improved Eurosonic bill will also feature the likes of Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, Battlekat and Deathcrush. www.eurosonic-noorderslag.nl/en/festival/

SNOWBOMBING 2012, Mayrhofen, Austria, 9-14 Apr: Snoop Dogg is fresh on the line-up at this snowy sports bash, joining live performers The Vaccines, Jungle Brothers, Example and DJ Shadow on the overall programme. Meanwhile Zane Lowe, Skream and Chase & Status head up the roster of DJs set to frequent the event so far. www.snowbombing.com/en/

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Now in their tenth year of active service, Gorillaz are set to cash in on a new partnership with Converse, having collaborated with the shoe company on a range of signature sneakers. Gorillaz co-creator Jamie Hewlett has designed a range of four new prints for a collection of Converse's Chuck Taylor All Stars shoes, all inspired by the virtual cartoon troupe's official artwork.

With the range due to be revealed next February, both band and brand will mark the occasion with a special show at London's 100 Club on 1 Dec. A contribution from Gorillaz to Converse's 'Three Artists, One Song' project is also in the offing.

Gorillaz drummer, Russel Hobbs, ponders the band's Converse connection: "To converse: the exchange of thoughts, feelings or ideas. That's what Gorillaz are all about, working and collaborating and exchanging ideas with other artists and global communicators. We've been trading in ideas and conversing with one another for ten whole years. So I couldn't think of a better bunch of people to help celebrate our decade in the business than the good people over at the Converse shoe company. Plus I've been wearing my Chuck Taylor's since forever".

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Universal Music owner Vivendi saw sales and profits decline year-on-year in their third quarter, though nevertheless impressed investment types with their latest financials, partly by scoring better than expected operating profits, and also by reporting that so far this year overall profits are up, in no small part thanks to the good performance of the group's Activision Blizzard video gaming unit. Nevertheless, Vivendi chiefs warned that year end profits would likely be less than originally expected because of increasing corporation tax rates in France.

In its latest financial report, Vivendi admitted that its acquisition last week of the EMI record labels for £1.2 billion left "very, very little headroom on the balance sheet" and, given the company has no desire to increase its debt levels, no other big acquisitions are likely in the near future. Though, as previously reported, Vivendi chiefs have denied that this week's surprise sale of 3% of the French conglom's stake in Activision was motivated by the need to boost cash reserves to protect their credit rating in light of the big EMI deal.

Universal Music also delivered nominal growth for Vivendi, which is good news, even if it is slightly overshadowed by the storming success of the gaming business.

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Two men have been arrested after a rather large CD and DVD counterfeiting operation was discovered in a flat above a shop in Bognor. 150,000 CDs and DVDs and 100 full computer hard drives containing 25,000 music, movie and software files were seized as part of the raid.

The arrests followed a long investigation which began in North West England, and was therefore led by the North West Regional Crime Unit, despite the arrests occurring in Sussex. Local police and investigators from the BPI's Anti-Piracy Unit were also involved in the raids.

Confirming the action, the BPI's Anti-Piracy Director David Wood told reporters: "I would like to thank both the Northwest Regional Organised Crime Unit and Sussex Police for co-ordinating their efforts to disrupt this prolific production of counterfeit music, film and game repertoire. These arrests are significant in that it is one of the largest 'domestic factories' uncovered to date in the UK. It had the capability of manufacturing and distributing counterfeit product on a truly commercial scale".

Meanwhile Brighton newspaper The Argus quoted Detective Inspector Chris Neilson of the Sussex Police Economic Crime Unit as saying: "Detectives and financial investigators from our unit are investigating, and are working closely with the BPI and North West England Regional Asset Recovery Team to fully investigate this 'factory'".

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The people behind Leeds/London-based new music fanzine It's All Happening! are launching a record label, with their first release coming from Oxford-based band Secret Rivals in January. As well as publishing a printed fanzine, usually to coincide with festivals these days, It's All Happening! posts regular reviews online and organises its own live nights. The team behind the venture say the label will "continue our pursuit of getting exciting new music 'out there'".

Secret Rivals confirmed they were working with the new label on a double A-side release, saying: "It's with the greatest of excitement that we can announce we will be releasing a double A-side single in January through our friends at It's All Happening! who have taken the rather entrepreneurial step of expanding their damn fine promotions and zine arm into the big old world of releasing records. We have always had a great deal of admiration for Francesca and Dan at IAH! Anyone who's been to an IAH night will know why were excited to be on board with them".

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North London gig venue the Bull & Gate is up for sale, if you have £2.7 million to spare. The family who own the pub venue are reportedly keen to pursue new projects, though the sale possibly indicates times are still hard at the grass roots end of the live industry.

The estate agents managing the sale say they hope a new buyer will capitalise on the Kentish Town property's musical heritage and keep it as a gig venue, though they admit the building "will obviously appeal to investors and developers" who might have quite different plans for it.

Of course a number of smaller gig venues in North London have disappeared in recent years, including The Flowerpot also in Kentish Town, The Luminaire in Kilburn, and if you go back a few years the Tally Ho opposite the Bull & Gate. The closures are probably in part due to a general shift east by London's new music community, though, of course, the team behind The Flowerpot did find a new home quite near by at The Wheelbarrow on Camden High Street.

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So, the "does Spotify damage traditional record sales while delivering only nominal royalties" debate continues. If this debate goes on much longer we probably ought to find a snappier name for it. Plus this chapter involves services other that Spotify, but listing them all would make the debate title even longer.

Anyway, Dorset-based dance music distributor STHoldings has announced that it is pulling all content from 238 of the labels it represents off Spotify, Simfy, Rdio and Napster, leaving only four of their clients providing music to the subscription-based music platforms. The company claims that "these services cannibalise the revenues of more traditional digital services".

In a statement, the distributor said: "Despite these services offering promotion to many millions of music listeners we have concerns that these services cannibalise the revenues of more traditional digital services. These concerns are confirmed in our own accounts and a recent study by NPD Group and NARM". The statement included a link to Digital Music News's analysis of said study at www.digitalmusicnews.com/permalink/2011/111115cannibal

It continued: "As a distributor we have to do what is best for our labels. The majority of which do not want their music on such services because of the poor revenues and the detrimental affect on sales. Add to that, the feeling that their music loses its specialness by its exploitation as a low value/free commodity. Quoting one of our labels: 'Let's keep the music special, fuck Spotify'".

The company said that all labels had been given the option to remain on Spotify, Simfy, Rdio and Napster, but only four "expressed that they would like to be on these services".

Responding to ST Holdings' statement, Team Spotify questioned the distributor's interpretation of that there research undertaken for the US-based National Association Of Recording Merchandisers. A spokesman said: "Along with NARM, we're confused by the way this research has been interpreted, since Spotify was not referenced anywhere in the research questionnaire and had only been live in the US for a matter of days when the study was carried out. The deck also makes absolutely no reference to Spotify and certainly does not draw any conclusions about Spotify, such as those made in the [Digital Music News] article".

Of course, even if DMN and ST's interpretation of the NARM research is questionable, the distributor would presumably point to its own stats, also published by DMN, which include the fact that, after adding their music to Spotify, ST labels combined saw quarterly digital revenues drop for the first time, 14% overall, and 24% in terms of iTunes revenue. The stats also reveal that subscription services accounted for 82% of content consumed, but just 2.6% of revenues, with Spotify paying £2500 into the distributor's pot during those three months.

As previously reported, since Spotify's launch in the US, various labels have taken their content off this and other streaming services, while some major league artists have chosen not to put their new albums onto streaming platforms, with many - officially or unofficially - expressing concern that servicing the streamers is having a negative impact on digital revenue overall. Of course, it's very debatable whether recent digital fluctuations can be exclusively linked to the rise of Spotify et al, and even if it is, you could argue that short term decline may equal long term growth if you join the streaming service party.

Though, whatever you argue, as UK indie Hospital Records pointed out on Twitter yesterday, everyone should just be thankful services like Spotify efficiently take tracks off their platform if and when rights owners decide that route isn't for them.

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The bed that Michael Jackson died in will no longer be sold at auction next month on the grounds that selling it is "not in the best interests of Michael's children, his mother or the Estate". A statement from auction house Julien's Auctions clarified that the mattress from the bed was never up for sale, just the frame and headboards, but these would now not be offered.

Julien's Auctions owner Darren Julien said: "No part of the bed remains for sale ... Michael Jackson has played a major part in the history of Julien's Auctions and we would never do anything that is not in the best interests of Michael's children, his mother or the Estate. We will always honour these requests".

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