TUESDAY
26 FEB 2013

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Q&A: DOLDRUMS
Part of the same Canadian electronic music scene that spawned artists such as Grimes and Purity Ring, this week Doldrums releases his debut album 'Lesser Evil'. Less sample-based than his earlier work, it features heavily layered electronic collages of sound, formed into strange, otherworldly pop. Tonight Doldrums will play an in-store performance at Rough Trade East in London, ahead of which CMU's Andy Malt caught up with him to ask a few questions about the album, his attempts to create a musical lie and being licked by "a lot of dogs" more>>
 
APPROVED: KING TUFF - SUN MEDALLION
So, King Tuff has a backlog of 'lost' releases familiar only to his most loyal fans. Who knew? Well Burger Records did, for one, and will be gifting an 'in memoriam' re-pressing of Tuff's 2008 record 'Was Dead' back to lovers of last year's 'King Tuff'. An explanatory sleeve note from Thomas, who's from Vermont originally, reads: "I wanted 'Was Dead' to be a pure Vermont rock n roll record, fuelled by extra sharp Cabot cheddar cheese and hot, grade A fancy maple syrup poured over crisp white snow and served with a pickle and a cider donut" more>>


TOP STORIES
- American style three-strikes goes live
IN THE POP COURTS
- Pirate Parties in Norway and Spain take on Sweden's web services
CHARTS, STATS & POLLS
- Fast Company names most innovative music companies
REUNIONS & SPLITS
- "Reinvented" Nine Inch Nails to tour US this year
- Blue join Big Reunion
RELEASE NEWS
- David Bowie releases second single from The Next Day
- The National releasing new album in May
- Iggy And The Stooges (not) ready to die
- Little Boots names new LP, gives away track
GIGS & TOURS NEWS
- Marnie Stern sets May dates
- Stool Pigeon's live 'wake' to star Savages
FESTIVAL NEWS
- Festival line-up update: Camp Bestival, V Festival, Wilderness and more
THE MUSIC BUSINESS
- BMG announces FKO acquisition and Kertekian partnership
- Azoff ally resigns from Live Nation board
- Gabrielle Aplin launches record label
- Universal's Aussie man promoted
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- Spotify and Ford announce app alliance
- Shazam unveils upgraded iPad app
- Omnifone releases some usage stats
THE MEDIA BUSINESS
- Morrissey pulls out of Kimmel Live over duck killers
- BBC announces line-up for Baroque Remixed recording
AND FINALLY...
- Arcade Fire babies on way
- Bieber welcome in space, if not Sankeys
DOMINO - DIGITAL OPERATIONS ASSISTANT
Domino Recording Co is seeking a skilled individual for the full-time role of Digital Operations Assistant in their London office. This position will oversee the management and generation of creative digital assets for the label under the direction of the Head of Digital with a specific focus on the label’s video catalogue, label and artist apps, image and data assets.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
COLLUDED TALENT - BOOKING AGENT
Colluded Talent is the artist agency division of Defected Records and represents a broad roster of leading house music and electronic music DJ/producers and performers and Defected In The House branded events. We are looking for an experienced Booking Agent to join our team.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
MUSIC JOURNALISM COURSE
Eight week evening course with music journalist Lulu Le Vay (Guardian, Independent, Observer, i-D, Sleaze Nation, The Face, DJ magazine). Learn how to source hot music stories, network with industry insiders, interview artists, write reviews and features, and deliver copy under pressure. You will also get to pitch your interview and feature ideas to editors at our partner publications: Clash Magazine, Dummy, Resident Advisor and DJ Mag. Guest tutor: Matt Bennett, Deputy Editor, Clash Magazine. 

For more information including a full course description and how to book click here.
THREE MONTH MARKETING INTERNSHIP WITH AN AWARD WINNING MUSIC FESTIVAL
Interested in gaining marketing and promotional experience? Then a three month internship with one of the country’s leading music festivals maybe just what you are looking for. Experience what it is like in our busy, friendly office, and how to market a music festival.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
 
   
MUTE - JUNIOR DIGITAL PRODUCT MANAGER
Mute is hiring. Do you have experience of working in a digital environment and have a good understanding of music marketing? Do you have a passion for music and love the idea of working within a creative and independent environment? We have a vacancy for a Junior Digital Product Manager to work within the marketing and promotions team on our wide-ranging roster.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
ANORAK LONDON - DIGITAL PR
Anorak London is looking for an exceptional, talented digital PR person to join their multi-award winning team. The successful applicant will have at least two years experience as a digital PR with known acts. They will have excellent media contacts across the board, solid working relationships within the music industry and an excellent knowledge of the digital music marketplace. A strong passion for music is integral, as is someone who works well in a team and is full of ideas.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
LD COMMUNICATIONS - DIGITAL SPECIALIST
A rare opportunity to join the UK’s leading music and entertainment PR Agency, LD Communications. LD Digital, a division of LD Communications is expanding. We are seeking a talented and creative digital PR Account Executive with at least two years experience to join the team. If your network of digital media contacts is unrivalled and the latest social trend is another great opportunity to gain visibility, then we would like to hear from you.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
JAZZ CAFE - GENERAL BUSINESS MANAGER
MAMA & Company are looking for a dynamic, experienced General Business Manager with a proven track record of business development within a live music operation. This is a fantastic opportunity to work and grow with an exciting company at one of London’s most established venues, incorporating food, drink and live music.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
INVOLVED MANAGEMENT - LIVE EVENTS & MARKETING MANAGER
Involved Management represents a range of electronic music artists including Above & Beyond, Mat Zo and Dusky, and is affiliated with Anjunabeats, one of the UK’s leading independent dance labels. We are recruiting a new team member within our artist management division, reporting to the MD. The successful candidate will be a dynamic, self-motivated individual with excellent organisational and communication skills, good attention to detail, and prior experience of promoting and marketing live events within the music industry.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.


AMERICAN STYLE THREE-STRIKES GOES LIVE
The American version of three-strikes, which is more like six-strikes, and with a mainly undefined final sanction, is go, with the US Center For Copyright Information putting its Copyright Alert System live yesterday.

As previously reported, whereas three-strike type systems for combating illegal file-sharing have gone live in some other countries, including France and New Zealand, through a change in the law, and therefore are ultimately run by a government agency, in the US a graduated response set up has come about through a voluntary agreement between the music and movie industries and many of the country's major internet service providers (many of whom are also cable TV providers, and who therefore have an incentive to crack down on piracy).

As with other graduated response programmes, under the Copyright Alert System rights owners will be able to alert ISPs of IP addresses that they believe are being used to regularly access unlicensed sources of music or movie content. The ISP controlling that IP address will then send a letter to the relevant customer, alerting them to the fact copyright infringement is occurring via their net connection.

A series of more severe letters would follow, ultimately with some sort of threat if a user ignores the warnings, though exactly what will be threatened will depend on the ISP and, as this is a voluntary programme, will not involve law enforcement. Although at that point the rights owners could choose to sue the end user.

The voluntary scheme had been due to kick off in late 2012, but was delayed in November, partly because some of the companies involved had suffered set backs as a result of Hurricane Sandy. Now that the programme is live, labels are expected to start filing infringement reports with the CCI this week, which will result in ISPs mailing out the first letters next month.

It remains to be seen how successful the programme is in encouraging people to use only legit sources of online content. In the UK, of course, while the 2010 Digital Economy Act theoretically put a three-strikes system in place, various sets backs, in part caused by certain UK ISPs trying to resist involvement in anti-piracy activities, mean no letter sending has as yet occurred.

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PIRATE PARTIES IN NORWAY AND SPAIN TAKE ON SWEDEN'S WEB SERVICES
Sweden's Pirate Party has stopped providing bandwidth to the infamous Pirate Bay, after the previously reported threats by a Swedish organisation calling itself the Rights Alliance which threatened to sue the political party for aiding the Bay, which has been judged liable for copyright infringement in many jurisdictions, and in the Swedish courts via the conviction of three of TPB's founders and their original funder.

However, the net services Sweden's Pirate Party has been providing to the Bay, which actually hosts much of its online operations in a secret location, will now be offered by Pirate Party organisations in Norway and Spain. Confirming the shift, which hasn't had any noticeable effect on the Bay's operations, a rep for the controversial file-sharing site told TorrentFreak: "It will be interesting to see who is now blamed for hosting TPB. In the end, maybe the anti-interneterians will understand that they can't win a fight when they have the people against them".

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FAST COMPANY NAME MOST INNOVATIVE MUSIC COMPANIES
Want to know what music firms US business magazine Fast Company reckons are the "most innovative" as of now? Digital hoo haa dominates obviously, though Coachella and music film makers Pulse also get name-checks, so that's all groovy. Top ten below, or follow this innovative link to find out just why these innovative companies are so innovatively innovative. What ever happened to the Innovations catalogue? That was fun, wasn't it? My desk definitely needs more gadgets.

1. Rap Genius
2. Spotify
3. YouTube
4. Pulse Films
5. Merlin Network
6. Moment Factory
7. Coachella Festival
8. Songza
9. StageIt
10. The Space John Peel Records Archive

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"REINVENTED" NINE INCH NAILS TO TOUR US THIS YEAR
Three years ago Trent Reznor decided to put Nine Inch Nails on hiatus and retire from touring, a few months later telling his audience at the Bonnaroo festival: "It just dawned on me that this is our last show ever in the United States. Don't be sad. I'll keep going. But I think I'm going to lose my fucking mind if I keep doing this, and I have to stop". Well, if you weren't able to stop yourself from being sad, now is the time to cheer the fuck up again, because Reznor has just announced the return of NIN.

New material from the project has been mooted for some time, but in a post on official Trent Reznor website, Pitchfork, the musician has revealed that the first new NIN activity since those "last ever" shows is actually a tour. Whether there will be new material as well isn't clear. In fact, nothing is very clear, except that Reznor has decided to "re-think the idea of what Nine Inch Nails could be".

In a statement, Reznor wrote: "I was working with [King Crimson's] Adrian Belew on some musical ideas, which led to some discussion on performing, which led to some beard-scratching, which (many steps later) led to the decision to re-think the idea of what Nine Inch Nails could be, and the idea of playing a show. Calls were made to some friends, lots of new ideas were discussed, and a show was booked - which led to another, which somehow led to a lot of shows".

He continued: "The band is reinventing itself from scratch and will be comprised of [Ex-Jane's Addition bassist] Eric Avery, Adrian Belew, [previous NIN member] Alessandro Cortini, [Telefon Tel Aviv's] Josh Eustis, [Angels & Airwaves, Paramore and Ex-Lostprophets drummer] Ilan Rubin, and me. The first shows will begin this summer, followed by a full-on arena tour of the US this fall, and lots of other dates worldwide to follow through 2014".

Exactly how the band will be reinvented remains to be seen, as a new line-up isn't exactly anything new for a project that has always been Trent Reznor and some other guys.

But anyway, for no specific reason, let's all watch this studio performance of 'Something I Can Never Have'.

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BLUE JOIN BIG REUNION
So, the 'Big Reunion' roulette-of-horrors will not stop spinning. Why won't it stop? Ahem, so anyway... last time, it landed on an Atomic Kitten-branded fragrance range, and this time... well, this time it's hit Blue, who've just been added to the official cast-list of ITV's televised pop do-over-athon.

Quite aptly given that nonsensical metaphor, Blue's first LP in ten years 'Roulette' will be released later this year on the back of their new ITV exposure. They're also playing beside 5ive, 911, B*Witched, The Honeyz and Liberty X (and Atomic Kitten, naturally) at London's Hammersmith Apollo tonight. So if you're going to that, congratulations, you've won a free boyband.

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DAVID BOWIE RELEASES SECOND SINGLE FROM THE NEXT DAY
David Bowie has released the second single from his new album, 'The Next Day'. Entitled 'The Stars (Are Out Tonight)', the track is rockier and quicker in pace than first single 'Where Are We Now?', and comes accompanied by a Floria Sigismondi-directed video featuring Bowie and Tilda Swinton as a happily married couple whose world is turned upside down when a young celebrity couple move in next door.

You may watch the video here.

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THE NATIONAL RELEASING NEW ALBUM IN MAY
The National have announced that they will release a new album in May. That's about it really. No title, no other information. Presumably it'll be released by 4AD again. There wasn't room in the tweet the band sent out to provide these sorts of details.

In another tweet, the band also announced that they will be touring the US in June.

Twitter, eh?

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IGGY AND THE STOOGES (NOT) READY TO DIE
Iggy Pop has shared vital stats on 'Ready To Die', his and The Stooges first LP since 2007's 'The Weirdness', and first since 1973's 'Raw Power' to feature original Stooges guitarist James Williamson and drummer Scott Asheton. Mike Watt fills in for late bassist Ron Asheton, who died in 2009.

A significant disc for Iggy et al in many ways, 'Ready To Die' will be released via Fat Possum on 30 Apr.

Railing angrily as part of this video Q&A, Iggy says: "My motivation in making any record with the group at this point is no longer personal. It's just a pig-headed fucking thing I have that a real fucking group when they're an older group they also make fucking records. They don't just go and twiddle around on stage to make a bunch of fucking money".

So there you go. This is 'Ready To Die' track 'Scarecrow'.

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LITTLE BOOTS NAMES NEW LP, GIVES AWAY TRACK
Having spent a year or so refining her new LP, mini pop artiste Little Boots is at last all set to release it, 'it' being a ten-track-containing 'suite' titled 'Nocturnes'.

DFA Records MD Tim Goldsworthy, Simian Mobile Disco's James Ford, Hercules & Love Affair's Andy Butler, Sky Ferreira/Charli XCX collaborator Ariel Reichstadt and Gaga's 'Born This Way' co-writer Jeppe Laursen are all names associated with its making.

Little Boots' Victoria Hesketh is giving away 'Nocturnes' intro 'Motorway' as a free means of luring us all into buying the album when it's released on 6 May, so give into that scheme via www.littlebootsmusic.co.uk

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MARNIE STERN SETS MAY DATES
Recent CMU interviewee Marnie Stern has listed lots of shows she's doing in May and June, primarily as a means of playing her new LP, 'The Chronicles Of Marnia', to the populace after its release. Which is 18 Mar, by the way.

The tour dates (plus a play of Stern's LP-featuring new track 'Nothing Is Easy') are presented thus:

30 May: Birmingham, Hare & Hounds
31 May: Sheffield, Queens Social Club
1 Jun: Manchester, Ruby Lounge
2 Jun: Glasgow, Broadcast
3 Jun: Leeds, Brudenell Social Club
4 Jun: Bristol, Louisiana
5 Jun: London, The Garage

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STOOL PIGEON'S LIVE 'WAKE' TO STAR SAVAGES
The Stool Pigeon has arranged a 'wake'-style party to mark the passing of its last ever issue. The free newspaper first heralded the 'death' of its print edition (and online doings) earlier this month.

Savages, Teeth Of The Sea and Hermot will all pay their respects by playing live sets, and there'll also be a deathly cool "dance macabre" and sale of spare Stool Pigeon miscellanea.

Buy tickets via this link.

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FESTIVAL LINE-UP UPDATE: CAMP BESTIVAL, V FESTIVAL, WILDERNESS AND MORE
So, we'll begin this CMU FLUU interlude with Ash, who are the first 'beginning-with-A' artist added to this year's 'Around The World'-themed Camp Bestival, according to its spate of A-Z additions. Now we have only to wait for 'B'!

And here she is right now, B - or Beyonce to you - has been announced as the first headliner of this year's V, which also keeps the single letter theme going, if jumping ahead a little too quickly. Whatever, V will be Beyonce's only UK festival performance this year, which is a shame because V is the worst festival on the planet. Kings Of Leon have also been confirmed to headline too, which doesn't help matters much.

Announcing those two, as well as various other acts for this year's event, V Festival Directors Bob Angus, Simon Moran and Dennis Desmond sang in near-perfect harmony: "We've worked hard to bring fans an exciting and diverse line-up, securing Beyonce for an exclusive European festival appearance and Kings Of Leon as headliners is a great achievement. These acts along with one of the strongest bills in V Festival's eighteen year history is something we are very proud of. We have a reputation for bringing fans the best world class acts and breakthrough artists, 2013 is set to be another sensational year".

Now, who's interested in the first list of live names to find themselves on the bill attached to MAMA/Secret's un-wild boutique soiree Wilderness? W, see? We're still on the alphabet thing. If so, have Empire Of The Sun, Noah & The Whale, Rodriguez, Michael Kiwanuka, Tom Odell, King Krule and Melody's Echo Chamber with Wilderness's compliments. Oh, and a rapt quote from the man at the heart of Oscar-winning film 'Searching For Sugar Man', fabled folk character Rodriguez, who says: "It is an honour and pleasure to be included to perform at this year's Wilderness. I am told that it is at a beautiful location, so we are definitely looking forward to the scene".

Yeah, the scene. Orchestrating that scene - which features opera, theatre, banquet-style gourmet hors d'oeuvres and even a luxury spa - are MAMA/Secret's Dean James, Tim Harvey, Jim Whewell and Jo Vidler, who, like those V types, sang their statement together (it was wonderful, you really should have heard it): "As festival organisers, Wilderness is still the mouth-watering prospect it's always been. Each and every one of the amazing shows and happenings have been inspired by the lakes, valleys, copses and rides of our majestic home. From this year's exquisite banqueting concepts to theatrical shows we are bringing over from mainland France, it will be a weekend of both electrifying entertainments and restful escape. We can't wait".

Well, they'll have to wait a while for all that, but this itemised synopsis of all-new FLUUs is ready for consumption right now, including the inaugural Alton Towers Live, insular Croatian fest Echo, Finland's Kendrick Lamar-starring Flow, Henley's self-titled jazzy pop party, city-central rock revel Live At Leeds, and the Matlock-based Y-Not:

ALTON TOWERS LIVE, Alton Towers Resort, Staffordshire, 6 Jul: Rizzle Kicks, Labrinth, Little Mix, James Arthur, Conor Maynard, Stooshe, Union J. www.altontowers.com/alton-towers-live

CAMP BESTIVAL, Lulworth Castle, Dorset, 1-4 Aug: Ash. www.campbestival.ne

ECHO FESTIVAL, Kanegra, Umag, Croatia, 6-9 Jun: Magda, Redshape, John Roberts, Lorca, Audio Werner, Mandy Jordan, Voigtman, Lamache, Daniel Padlung, Luca Pilato. www.echofestival.com

FLOW FESTIVAL, Suvilahti, Helsinki, Finland, 7-11 Aug: Kendrick Lamar, Haim, AlunaGeorge, Disclosure. www.flowfestival.com

HENLEY FESTIVAL, Henley On Thames, 4-8 Jul: Jamie Cullum. www.henley-festival.co.uk

LIVE AT LEEDS, various venues, Leeds, 3-5 May: The Walkmen, Savages, MS MR, Dutch Uncles, Mo, Melodys Echo Chamber, Still Corners, Sky Larkin, Dinosaur Pile Up, Splashh, Still Corners, Backyards, Bebe Black, Castrovalva, Charlie Boyer and The Voyeurs, Chloe Howl, Deep Sea Arcade, Filthy Boy, Findlay, Fryers, Fun Adults, Georgia Thursting, Gliss, Hawk Eyes, Heart Ships, Humanfly, Indians, Jacobean Ruff, Jetta, John Newman, Luke Sital Singh, Lulu James, Man Like Me (live), Max Raptor, Maybeshewill, Middleman, Must, Nadine Carina, Night Engine, On An On, PINS, Post War Years, Robert DeLong, Syron, Take Turns, The Concetines, The Coopers, The Covelles, The Dunwells, These Monsters, Those Rotten Thieves, Tokyo Corner, Troumaca, Wild Swim, Wolf Alice. www.liveatleeds.com

V FESTIVAL, Hylands Park, Chelmsford and Weston Park, Staffordshire, 17-18 Aug: Beyonce, Kings Of Leon, Stereophonics, The Script, Emeli Sandé, Calvin Harris, Beady Eye, Jessie J, Two Door Cinema Club, The Vaccines, Basement Jaxx, Olly Murs, Paloma Faith, James, Rita Ora, The Courteeners, Jason Mraz, Fun., Labrinth, Ellie Goulding, Kendrick Lamar, Of Monsters And Men, Maverick Sabre, Travis, DJ Fresh/LIVE, Jessie Ware, Maximo Park, Lianne La Havas, Rudimental, James Arthur, Scouting For Girls, Deacon Blue, Little Mix, Ocean Colour Scene, The Fratellis, Gabrielle Aplin and Laura Mvula. www.vfestival.com

WILDERNESS, Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire, 9-11 Aug: Empire Of The Sun, Rodriguez, Noah And The Whale, Michael Kiwanuka, Tom Odell, Ghostpoet, Tribes, Matt Corby, Lucy Rose, King Krule, Melody's Echo Chamber, Eliza And The Bear. www.wildernessfestival.com

Y-NOT FESTIVAL, Matlock, Derbyshire, 2-4 Aug: The Cribs, The Twang, Dizraeli And The Small Gods, Propellers. ynotfestivals.co.uk

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BMG ANNOUNCES FKO ACQUISITION AND KERTEKIAN PARTNERSHIP
Music rights firm BMG has made another acquisition, this time through its French arm, in the form of the FKO Music catalogue, perhaps most notable for owning all the songs of the late Afrobeat legend Fela Kuti.

BMG has also announced a new joint venture partnership with FKO Music's founder Francis Kertekian, which will see the creation of a new company called FKGC through which both parties will develop and administrate new and future songwriter signings. Kertekian will also remain closely involved with the existing FKO catalogue through the partnership.

Confirming the deal, BMG France MD Stéphane Berlow told reporters: "I am proud that BMG has now become the recipient of the FKO catalogue. Fela Kuti is one of the most iconic artists there's ever been, his infectious beats are universal but above all, his message lives on. [And] the [wider] catalogue that Francis Kertekian has put together over the years is full of successful music with a twist, always interesting and different".

Berlow continued: "To continue developing the exploitation of this catalogue and to contribute to expanding it further through BMG France's set up and BMG's network of companies internationally is a fascinating project. And working with Francis on the FKO catalogue and FKGC's new signings will be both a pleasure and an honour".

For his part, Kertekian added: "This deal is a major step towards the kind of impetus that I was looking for, for my catalogue. The agreement with BMG will enable me to continue supporting with a new momentum all the artists that have been entrusting me for all these years. At the same time, it was essential for me that the acquisition by BMG had to go hand in hand with the development of a new venture for future signings. I am pleased of Stéphane's enthusiasm and commitment to these projects and I look forward very much to our collaboration".

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AZOFF ALLY RESIGNS FROM LIVE NATION BOARD
The Executive Chairman of Madison Square Garden Company resigned his seat on the board of Live Nation last week, somewhat abruptly. Though it's thought James Dolan's departure may be the logical conclusion of Irving Azoff's exiting from the live music giant at the end of last year, rather than the result of any internal conflict.

Dolan, also CEO of MSG's parent company Cablevision, came to the Live Nation board table via his friendship and business dealings with Azoff. Venue operator MSG bought a minority stake in Azoff's Front Line management company in 2008. Ticketmaster then took control of Front Line the same year, before merging with Live Nation two years later, with Azoff rising to Chairman of the combined Live Nation/Ticketmaster business, and Dolan getting a seat on the board of the combined company.

As previously reported, Azoff departed Live Nation rather suddenly on New Years Eve, seemingly frustrated with the constraints of running a large publicly listed company, and recognising the tax benefits of a quick exit. Insiders say Dolan just wasn't interested on sitting on a board without Azoff at the top of the table. Whether the move will also see MSG offload its stake in Live Nation, thought to be about 2% of the company overall, remains to be seen.

Billboard notes that Dolan stepping away from Live Nation will also remove any possible politics over the Los Angeles Forum, acquired by MSG last year and currently being revamped. MSG's small stake in Live Nation doesn't stop it from working with other promoters at its various venues, including namesake the Madison Square Garden in New York. But some reckoned Dolan's Live Nation board role might have been particularly stressful when it came to the Los Angeles Forum working with the live giant's rivals, the competition between Live Nation and AEG being particularly fierce in the LA market.

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GABRIELLE APLIN LAUNCHES RECORD LABEL
Singer-songwriter and John Lewis serenader Gabrielle Aplin is to launch her own record label, to be called Never Fade, the first release through which will be a single by Hannah Grace. Grace will also support Aplin on her upcoming tour.

Aplin told The Daily Star: "When I went to City Of Bath College I studied the music business. I like being able to understand that side of things, so I've started my own label, Never Fade. Hannah's voice is amazing. It's like Beyonce covering Michael Kiwanuka. I've been advising her on how to pick producers and which of her songs she should record".

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UNIVERSAL'S AUSSIE MAN PROMOTED
The head of Universal Music's Australasia operations has been promoted, assuming concurrent responsibilities for the Asia Pacific region, excluding Japan.

The latest in a string of executive rejigs at Universal Music's International division since the acquisition of the EMI record labels last year and the promotion of Max Hole to CEO of the unit last month, George Ash will be charged with the task of matching his successes to date for the major, initially in New Zealand and subsequently in Australia, across the Asia Pacific market.

Says Hole: "In Australia and New Zealand George has built one of our most dynamic international operations with a very strong roster of artists and an immensely talented team of people. I'm very pleased that he will now be applying his energy and ideas to our business across the Asia Pacific region".

Meanwhile Ash told CMU: "I have been lucky enough to work alongside the best in the industry in Australia and New Zealand. With Max now giving me this great opportunity and with our diverse and exceptional artists I'm very positive about Asia Pacific's unprecedented growth potential and what we can achieve together".

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SPOTIFY AND FORD ANNOUNCE APP ALLIANCE
A stand-out announcement from day one of the Mobile World Congress conference in Barcelona yesterday was news of a partnership between Ford and Spotify which will see the popular streaming music service included on the car maker's app platform when it launches its first 'Sync-equipped' vehicles in Europe later this year.

Numerous music services are already available via the Sync AppLink platform in net-connected Ford cars in the US as part of the company's mobile-internet-powered in-car entertainment platform, including Spotify rivals like Pandora, Rhapsody and Clear Channel's iHeartRadio.

It's long been said that the arrival of net-connected services in the car could have a major impact on the digital music market, not least because it puts Spotify-type platforms more head-to-head in competition terms with music radio, which has long benefited from having a car-based captive audience. Ford hopes to have 3.5 million Sync-equipped cars on the road in Europe by 2015.

Although you can expect numerous content services to appear on Ford's app platform once it goes live over here, having Spotify on board was seemingly important for the car maker.

The company's Doug VanDagens told The Guardian: "With both Sync and AppLink coming to Europe for the first time this year, we wanted to have a great partner. We've been pursuing Spotify, because of their leadership position. They're the leader for streaming music in active subscriptions, paid subscriptions and number of countries, so it's a good deal for us".

Services on the Sync AppLink platform are voice-controlled, and the demo of the voice-activated Spotify app has been generally well received at WMC.

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SHAZAM UNVEILS UPGRADED IPAD APP
Shazam has unveiled an upgraded version of its iPad and Android tablet app as the music identification service announces it now has 300 million users worldwide.

Shazam says that its tablet app is becoming an increasingly important part of its operations, and is certainly important as part of the digital firm's move to capture some of the emerging 'second screening' market, whereby users interact with the company's identification, data and sharing services while concurrently watching TV. In the US the Shazam platform now also lets users see what television shows other people are watching.

The revamped app features a new design, a mapping feature that reveals what music is being listened to where, enhanced social networking and sharing, and "lightning-fast tagging" that will, Shazam claims, identify what a user is listening to in as little as a second.

Shazam CEO Andrew Fisher told CMU: "The number of Shazam users and their level of engagement continue to grow rapidly. We now have over 300 million Shazamers globally, an increasing proportion of whom use our app on their iPad or Android tablet devices to interact with television. This new version of Shazam optimizes discovery, engagement, transactions and exploration in a tablet environment. It's the most efficient way to experience more of the media around you whether you are in your home or in any other environment throughout the world".

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OMNIFONE RELEASE SOME USAGE STATS
Digital music back engine Omnifone, which powers music services like Sony Music Unlimited and Blackberry's BBM Music, has revealed some stats about usage across the platforms it powers, which, the company says, saw a collective increase of 300% in terms of subscriber base in 2012, though it's not clear what that equates to in terms of overall user numbers.

Of those people using Omnifone services, 79% accessed music from "devices in the home" rather than portable gadgets; of the company's smart-phone users 76% were using Android-enabled devices; peak usage time in Europe was 6-8pm, while in North America and Australasia its 2-4pm; and across all services in all countries, Christmas Day saw the highest number of streams in 2012. So there are some stats for you all to enjoy.

Commenting on the released data, Omnifone CEO Jeff Hughes reckons the much mooted shift of digital music services into the mainstream is nearly upon us, telling CMU: "The data we are releasing today is further evidence that streaming is the fastest growing area of digital music and ready for mass market adoption. Next generation connectivity such as 4G and the latest internet-enabled home technology will drive growth further. We are continually investing in our cloud-based music platform to enable our customers to take advantage of that opportunity on a global scale".

He added: "Looking ahead we envisage further bundling of music with other services which will really bring streaming to the mainstream. Music discovery, re-discovery and innovative curation and recommendation, combining recommendation engines with human experts, will enhance the user experience and accelerate demand".

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MORRISSEY PULLS OUT OF KIMMEL LIVE OVER DUCK KILLERS
While it remains unclear whether LA's Staples Center will be completely meat free when Morrissey plays there on Friday (reports said it would be, but the AEG-operated venue now says that while back-stage catering will be sans-meat, and consumer-facing concessions will be encouraged to be more vege-friendly, burgers will still grill front of house), the famously anti-meat singer has pulled out of a spot on the 'Jimmy Kimmel Live' TV show in defence of the ducks.

With Morrissey seemingly on the mend after his recent hospital stint, and back on stage this week, he was due to appear on Kimmel's show tonight. But he has pulled out of the programme after learning that it would also feature the stars of an American reality show called 'Duck Dynasty', which follows the lives of the Robertson family, who made their fortune selling products for duck hunters.

Not wanting to share the green room with the beneficiaries of duck death, Morrissey pulled out of the show, with a rep telling reporters: "Morrissey is thankful for being invited to perform on Jimmy Kimmel Live. However, he cannot morally be on a television programme where the cast members of 'Duck Dynasty' will also be guests. Morrissey would be honoured to play the show, if 'Duck Dynasty' were removed".

The singer himself is quoted thus: "As far as my reputation is concerned, I can't take the risk of being on a show alongside people who, in effect, amount to animal serial killers. If Jimmy cannot dump 'Duck Dynasty', then we must step away".

Reports say producers for the late night talk show tried to find a compromise that wouldn't require the dumping of any guests, but no such deal could be struck. Though insiders say the singer's appearance on the show could be pushed back to a future duck-killer-free edition of the programme. If and when such a thing arises.

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BBC ANNOUNCES LINE UP FOR BAROQUE REMIXED RECORDING
More details have been announced about 'Baroque Remixed', the previously reported BBC venture due to air as part of Corporation's upcoming Baroque season. The Remixed programme will see various music types collaborating with the BBC Concert Orchestra to reinvent works from the Baroque era of classical music (approx 1600-1750, if you were wondering).

Goldfrapp's Will Gregory will be joined by his Moog Ensemble for a world premiere of their new version of Johann Bach's 'Sarabande', whilst Scandinavian singer-songwriter Ane Brun will both sing and play guitar in an arrangement of 'When I Am Laid In Earth' from Henry Purcell's opera 'Dido And Aeneas'.

Elsewhere, Matthew Herbert will rework the music of Jean-Philippe Rameau by combining orchestral and electronic sounds, while composer and conductor Thomas Adès will be performing his popular 'Three Studies from Couperin'. 6music's Lauren Laverne and Radio 3's Andrew McGregor will host the proceedings, which will be broadcast live on R3 from London's Roundhouse on 11 Mar.

Andrew Connolly, General Manager of the BBC Concert Orchestra, told CMU: "We hope to open people's ears to the great masterpieces of the Baroque era through these exciting and original 21st century makeovers".

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ARCADE FIRE BABIES ON WAY
Arcade Fire 'chanteuse' Régine Chassagne is pregnant with her first baby via Arcade Fire chanteur Win Butler. The band's Mariska Shaw is 'with child' too, only not by Win, so that's nice. The Stool Pigeon dies, and two Arcade Fire babies are born... such is the circle of indie life.

This is a photo to prove that both AF ladies are, in fact, enceinte.

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BIEBER WELCOME IN SPACE, IF NOT SANKEYS
Following all the chatter about Justin Bieber being refused admission to Manchester club Sankeys last Thursday, the good news for the Biebster is that he's welcome to have a boogie in space.

Bieber, currently on tour in the UK, was refused admission to the popular Manchester club last week, perhaps because management didn't believe having the pop teen on the premises did much for their street cred, or at least realised turning the star away would play well with their target demographic and get them lots of positive responses online. If the latter was the plan, it worked.

Or maybe door staff on the night simply saw the once-in-a-lifetime chance to put a global teen star in his place and couldn't resist the temptation. Though officially speaking it was Bieber's dance moves that got him barred, with the club tweeting on Friday: "Yes the rumours are true...we turned Justin Bieber away last night. He shuffles on stage and we can't be having that in Sankeys now can we!"

But while the doormen at Sankeys sent Bieber packing, the doormen of space seem much more welcoming. Not letting the knock back in Ancoats dent his ambitions all that much, the Biebster tweeted this weekend: "I wanna do a concert in space". To which NASA responded: "Maybe we can help you with that. 'All Around the World', next off it?" What makes me think there's someone in NASA's marketing department with a teenage daughter to impress.

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