TUESDAY
26 MAR 2013

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Q&A: SUSANNE SUNDFØR
One of CMU's Artists Of The Year in 2012, Susanne Sundfør released her debut UK album, 'The Silicone Veil', through Sonnet Sound last October. Never before available in the UK, Sonnet Sound will release all of Sundfør's pre-'The Silicone Veil' back catalogue on 8 Apr. Following a sold out show at the Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen in London earlier this month, CMU's Andy Malt caught up with Susanne to talk through her back catalogue and find out what she's planning next more>>
 
APPROVED: FUZZ
So Ty Segall - garage deviant (in a cool way) and man of 1000 bands - has this new outfit named Fuzz. Initially, Segall's name was kept off details of his, bassist Roland Cosio and guitarist Charles Moothart's first seven-inch single - a double A-side featuring the tracks 'This Time I Got A Reason' and 'Fuzz's Fourth Dream' - but I guess it's no longer a secret, especially since the single has proven to be so popular, with all pressings selling within days of their release back in January more>>


TOP STORIES
- Government provides funding for phase one of Copyright Hub
IN THE POP COURTS
- Alleged Joss Stone attacker denies knowledge of singer prior to arrest
- Will Cowell have to testify in Cole's X-USA litigation?
REUNIONS & SPLITS
- S Club 7 talking again, "all in the same headspace"
IN THE STUDIO
- Flying Lotus hangs with Herbie Hancock
RELEASE NEWS
- Daft Punk detail new LP, at last
- Michael Bublé compiles "yummy" new LP
- Mount Kimbie announce new album
BOOKS NEWS
- Meek Mill releasing Gangland tome
FESTIVAL NEWS
- Festival line-up update: Download, Hop Farm, Outlook and more
BRANDS & STUFF
- Universal partners with Bang & Olufsen
THE MUSIC BUSINESS
- [PIAS]'s Co-op acquisition approved
- Investment firm acquires Concord Music Group
- BMG announces Big Deal alliance
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- Spotify launches TV ad campaign, denies imminent TV-on-demand plans
THE MEDIA BUSINESS
- NME Radio closes
- Buzzmedia relaunches as SpinMedia
- Pop Powerlist returns to 4Music
AND FINALLY...
- Way comments on MCR "ending"
BLEEP - PHYSICAL MUSIC BUYER
Bleep is an online retailer specialising in independent music, film and art. We strive to provide exceptional retail experience and focus on the curation of high quality products. We are looking for a highly skilled individual to join our team as a physical music buyer. A proven track record within a similar role and existing relationships within the industry are essential. Experience measuring sales and stock performance is required.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
EAST LONDON CREATIVE AGENCY - JUNIOR DESIGNER
We are an East London creative agency and require a junior designer to work on a freelance basis on some short-term projects, based at our Shoreditch offices. You will be mainly working on the layout of print materials to existing style guidelines. Good working knowledge of In-Design and Photoshop essential, as is an attention to detail. These are fun music and culture-based projects that will look great in any young designer's portfolio. Daily rate paid.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
 
   
DISTILLER MUSIC - SIX MONTH PAID INTERNSHIP
Distiller Records is on the hunt for a new marketing intern that can also help us out with all manner of things. We want bright, motivated and creative folks who want hands on experience in how an independent label works. We’re looking for people who have a passion for music and a crazy love for the internet.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
WARP RECORDS - FINANCE ASSISTANT
We’re looking for a bright, enthusiastic part qualified accountant with a love of music to join our finance team. Working across all the companies in the group the main duties will include: Cash book and bank reconciliation, purchase and sales ledger processing, HMRC returns – VAT, Intrastat, writing cheques/setting up online payments, intercompany postings and reconciliations, dealing with customer and supplier queries.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
ULTRA DJ MANAGEMENT - BOOKING AGENT
Ultra DJ Management is an independent company that is part of the Mission Control Group of companies including Mission Control Artists Agency and ASM Damage Ltd. We represent some of the world’s leading recording artists and producers and our roster includes multi-platinum album selling and award winning touring artists. We are recruiting for a booking agent with a good knowledge of dance music, the club and festival scene who possesses excellent negotiation skills and a high degree of professionalism.

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

GOVERNMENT PROVIDES FUNDING FOR PHASE ONE OF COPYRIGHT HUB
The government has put aside £150,000 to help fund stage one of the Copyright Hub initiative, which brings together various creative industry trade bodies and groups in a bid to create some kind of 'exchange' that demystifies and simplifies the licensing of copyright materials.

As previously reported, a Copyright Licensing Steering Group and Copyright Hub Launch Group was launched last November in response to a paper written by Richard Hooper called 'Copyright Works', which was in turn a response to Ian Hargreaves' 2011 government-instigated review of the British copyright system. Hargreaves proposed some kind of 'digital copyright exchange' to simplify the licensing process for licensees, and Hooper's report considered in more detail how that might work.

In reality the Copyright Hub will mainly be an online information resource, helping those looking to licence content of any kind to identify what copyrights are involved, who might own them, what kind of licenses are available, and whether any given use will be licensed directly by rights owner or via a collective licensing organisation like PRS or PPL.

The ultimate wish is that that resource could also bring together the various global copyright databases different content industries have or are developing, which make it easier to identify rights owners, ultimately creating a uber-database of copyright. Which is sort of a poor man's copyright registry when you think about it, but while most people in the rights industries support a Hub, few seem keen to debate the pros and cons of full-on copyright registration.

Phase one of the Hub programme is less ambitious than all that though, basically getting an initial website online, which is what much of the £150,000 will be spent on (given it's a government-funded website, that'll probably get us a WordPress site with a sign-up form, but in theory that should be enough to get a decent basic information resource built).

Confirming the investment, the UK's IP Minister James Younger told CMU: "The Copyright Hub will simplify copyright licensing for consumers and I am delighted to announce this funding to enable industry to begin their work. Databases of copyright works such as those held by collecting societies and publishers already exist. However, government has listened to concerns that consumers are unsure who they should go to if they are looking for information about obtaining a licence, particularly if multiple rights are involved".

He added: "The funding announced today will help industry to start building the Hub website sooner and engage with schools and Further Education colleges to help streamline educational licensing. Above all, it chimes with the government's aim to provide a further portal to assist businesses to grow faster and to boost our creative industries".

Richard Hooper, who is still involved in the venture as Director of Copyright Hub Ltd, added: "The Copyright Hub, linking to a wide array of databases and digital copyright exchanges, has the clear aim of helping consumers, rights users and small businesses find their way through the complexity of copyright and thus allow them to license copyrighted works much more easily and at a lower transaction cost. The Copyright Hub until today has been just an idea. Today it begins to become an exciting reality. We are especially grateful for the speed with which the Department of Business and Intellectual Property Office provided some start-up funding thus giving a real boost to this whole idea that emanated from the Hargreaves Review".

From the music side, UK Music boss Jo Dipple told CMU: "The copyright hub is very welcome and it is something the music industry has enthusiastically embraced as we try to push for further growth in the global digital marketplace. With this new funding the project has been given a real kickstart and it also demonstrates a further, very welcome commitment from the government, whose continued support - in partnership with our industry - is needed to underpin the Hub's success".

Meanwhile Peter Leathem, CEO of the record industry's collecting society PPL, added: "We are delighted to be involved in the Copyright Hub. PPL's collective licensing of recorded music and videos is itself an example of existing work by rights holders to aggregate copyright on behalf of 60,000 record companies and performers, manage data and simplify licensing. The Copyright Hub will build on such structures and databases across the creative sector, becoming a valuable tool to further assist copyright users in obtaining licences and finding out more about copyright and licensing. This will hopefully contribute to the further growth of a creative sector that is already culturally and economically crucial for the UK".

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ALLEGED JOSS STONE ATTACKER DENIES KNOWLEDGE OF SINGER PRIOR TO ARREST
Junior Bradshaw, one of the two men accused of plotting to kidnap and murder Joss Stone, yesterday told Exeter Crown Court that he had never even heard of the singer before he and Kevin Liverpool were arrested in June 2011.

He claimed that, as far as he had been aware, on the day they were arrested he and Liverpool were "just going on a day out". However, he said he couldn't remember what they planned to do when they got to wherever he thought they were going.

As previously reported, Liverpool and Bradshaw, having travelled from Manchester to Devon, were stopped by police when local residents reported the two men acting suspiciously. When searched, their car was found to contain various weapons and notes sketching out a plan to murder and decapitate singer Stone at her nearby home.

The two men deny charges of conspiracy to murder, rob and cause grievous bodily harm. The case continues.

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WILL COWELL HAVE TO TESTIFY IN COLE'S X-USA LITIGATION?
Simon Cowell could be forced to testify in a legal battle between Cheryl Cole and US TV production company Blue Orbit over the Girl Aloud's short-lived involvement in the American version of 'X-Factor'.

As previously reported, in 2011 Cole followed Simon Cowell from the UK version of 'X' to sit on the judging panel of the American version of the talent franchise, but was axed before 'X USA' had even begun airing, reportedly because US producers had concerns about the Geordie's accent.

Late last year it emerged that Cole was suing Blue Orbit, the main production company behind the US version of the Syco-owned franchise, claiming that she was owed $2.3 million relating to her short time working on the show.

Much of the owed money seemingly stems from an alleged contractual promise to pay Cole a $2 million fee for the second series of the 'X-USA' show even if she didn't appear on it. Blue Orbit seemingly reckons that doesn't apply because the singer didn't even appear on the first series of the programme. Some unpaid expenses are also included in the lawsuit.

It remains to be seen if the case actually comes to court. You'd expect a last minute settlement here, though both sides currently seem adamant that their interpretation of the agreement between the TV company and Cole is the correct one.

And, says Metro, if the case does go to court, 'X' chief Cowell is at the top of Blue Orbit's list of witness to testify against Cole. Which would probably be a damn site more interesting than any of the Syco chief's TV shows.

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S CLUB 7 TALKING AGAIN, "ALL IN THE SAME HEADSPACE"
Rachel Stevens says S Club 7 have been talking a lot of late, and are each in the "same head space" regarding a potential reunion, so that's nice.

Says Stevens of the band, who disbanded in 2003 - but still live on as Jo O'Meara, Paul Cattermole and Bradley McIntosh's 'S Club 3' act - "[we] met up not long ago and we talked about it and we still are talking about it".

She adds, in a convo with The Daily Star: "We are all in the same head space, talking about how special it was and we do all want to celebrate what we had. So it's definitely a possibility".

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FLYING LOTUS HANGS WITH HERBIE HANCOCK
As evidenced in this Vine vid, Flying Lotus has been in the studio with a new pal, jazz man Herbie Hancock. And an old pal, past collaborator Thundercat, which isn't quite as surprising... but still, they were all three there.

More info on the FlyLo/HerbHan connection as and when it arises.

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DAFT PUNK DETAIL NEW LP, AT LAST
After the fairly non-edifying revelation that Daft Punk's new LP does, in fact, feature thirteen tracks, we at last have info of greater value on said LP; specifically its title and release date.

'Random Access Memories' is the title, and the release date is 20 May. Oh and while we're at it, click over to this fancy new Daft Punk site, as features cover art and a partial play of a new track.

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MICHAEL BUBLÉ COMPILES "YUMMY" NEW LP
Swing king Michael Bublé says he's releasing his sixth studio LP, 'To Be Loved', on 15 Apr. He says it is "about love, happiness, fun and yummy things" none of which I can find it in my heart to oppose in any way.

Bublé will promote the Reese Withersoon-featuring record (she guests, Nicole Kidman-style, on a cover of Frank and Nancy Sinatra's 'Something Stupid') in June via six shows at the O2 Arena.

Its first single 'It's A Beautiful Day' precedes all that on 7 Apr, and goes like this.

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MOUNT KIMBIE ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM
So, Mount Kimbie - aka Dominic Maker and Kai Campos - have made an LP title from what looks like five miscellaneous words, and that title is 'Cold Spring Fault Less Youth'.

Due to be released via Warp on 27 May, it features zero guest artists other than the CMU Approved King Krule, who appears on two tracks.

Below is its tracklisting, while new track 'Made To Stray' is also available for free download via this link.

Home Recording
You Took Your Time (feat King Krule)
Break Well
Blood And Form
Made To Stray
So Many Times, So Many Ways
Lie Near
Meter, Pale, Tone (feat King Krule)
Slow
Sullen Ground
Fall Out

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MEEK MILL RELEASING GANGLAND TOME
Rapper Meek Mill has 'written' (perhaps via ghostwriter, who knows?) a book titled 'Tony Story', that'll be available on May Day. Though he'll be back at his day job five days hence - that is to say, 6 May - when his new mixtape, 'Dreamchasers 3' is released.

Meanwhile the official synopsis to 'Tony Story', a fictional narrative of gang life in Mill's native Philadelphia, reads like this: "After a deadly shooting, the streets of Philly were in an uproar and the lives of many people revolved around revenge. Trust was not an option and revenge was the only thing anyone had in common. It became bigger than the almighty dollar and no one was safe. Philly won't be the same after you're a witness to 'Tony Story'".

So, if you want Philly to stay the same, don't look.

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FESTIVAL LINE-UP UPDATE: DOWNLOAD, HOP FARM, OUTLOOK AND MORE
So, the big-name festival shoving all other festivals aside in the FLUU stakes today is Vince Power's returning-from-the-brink Hop Farm extravaganza, whose initial billing features My Bloody Valentine, 'Sugar Man' Rodriguez, The Horrors, Martha Wainwright, The Cribs, First Aid Kit and many, many others besides.

Trailing in its wake, but only slightly, is this year's Download and another late addition to its artist cache. Black Stone Cherry, Satyricon, CTHONIC And The Oriental Orchestra and Rival Sons join headlining titans Slipknot, Iron Maiden and Rammstein.

And with that, it's straight on to extra add-ons at the above festivals, and the following:

DOWNLOAD, Donington Park, Leicestershire, 14-16 Jun: Black Stone Cherry, CTHONIC And The Oriental Orchestra, Satryicon, DragonForce, Ghost, Masters Of Reality, Red White & Blues, Fearless Vampire Killers, Palm Reader, Rival Sons, Little Caesar, Krokodil, Patent Pending, Idiom, Voodoo Six, Hammer Of The Gods. www.downloadfestival.co.uk

HOP FARM MUSIC FESTIVAL, Paddock Wood, Kent, 5-6 Jul: My Bloody Valentine, Rodriguez, The Horrors, Jimmy Cliff, The Cribs, First Aid Kit, Dinosaur Jr, Presidents Of The United States Of America, Martha Wainwright, Edwyn Collins, The Staves, Little Comets, The Black Angels, Dry The River, Friends, Veronica Falls, Toy, Gaz Coombes, Tall Ships, Marcus Foster, Theme Park, Jack Savoretti, Cass McCombs, Sean Rowe, Wolf People, We Were Evergreen, Public Service Broadcasting, Temples, The Sheepdogs, Post War Years, Jesca Hoop, Concrete Knives, Luke Sital Singh, Ben Caplan, Sweet Baboo, Drenge, Teleman, Sinkane, PAWS, J Roddy Walston & The Business, Pale Seas, Syd Arthur, Washington Irving, Shields, Trevor Moss & Hannah-Lou, The History Of Apple Pie, Acollective, Jess Roberts & the Silver Rays, Pyramids, Ligers, Alba Lua, Sally Archer. hopfarmfestival.com

LIVE AT LEEDS, various venues, Leeds, 3-6 May: The Strypes, Likely Lads, Swiss Lips, London Grammar, Ruen Brothers, Misty Moller, Duologue, Kimberley Anne, Black Moth, Wet Nuns. www.liveatleeds.com

LIVERPOOL PSYCH FEST, Camp & Furnace, Liverpool, 27-28 Sep: Fuzz, Clinic, Psychic Ills, he Holydrug Couple, The Limiñanas, Jacco Gardner, Carlton Melton, The Wands, Plankton Wat, Maston, The Paperhead, Mmoss, Klaus Johann Grobe, The Resonars, Alfa 9. www.liverpoolpsychfest.com

OUTLOOK FESTIVAL, Fort Punta, Pula, Coratia, 29 Aug - 2 Sep: 207, Aaron Lipsett, Acre, Andreya Triana, Anthony B, Applebottom, Artful Dodger, Artwork, AZ & Tor, Barely Legal, Benton, Blackboard Jungle, Bonobo, Breezak, Charlie P, Charlie Snacks, Chronik, Chungo-Bungo, Citizen, Cracker Jon, Darksky, Darq E Freaker, Defenders of Style, Digital, Digitron, Discarda, Dismantle, DJ Madd, DjRUM, Dr Syntax, Dubble, Dusky, Edo Maajka, Egoless, Eton Messy DJs, Evian Christ, Filip Motovunski, Finwa, Firehouse Sound, fLako, Flow Dan, Frankie Stew, Gentleman's Dub Club, Get Low Cartel, Goth-Trad, Happa, Harvey Gunn, Hatcha, Indigo, Ivy Lab, Jacksun, Jives, Jman, Kandzija, Kenny Knots, Kutmah, L Jay, Livin Proof, London Zoo aka LDZ, Lunar C, Madam X, Maison Sky, Mark XTC, MC Fokus, Mos Def, Mr Garrud, Nymfo, Om Unit, Papa J, Poetic Death, Problem Child, Quest, Rag'n'Bone Man, Rahmanee, Rattus Rattus, Riddim Tuffa, Romare, Ruckspin, Rude Kid, Rustie, S-X, Sabre, Seb Wildblood, Sheco, Shift K3y, Silkie, Sonny Jim, Sparkz, Split Prophets, Stig of the Dump, Stray, Submotion Orchestra, Swindle, T-Man, The Purist, Too Late, Tudor Lion, Tunnidge, Visionobi, Walter Ego, Wayfarer, XXTRAKT, Young Warrior. www.outlookfestival.com

SUMMER SATURNALIA, Funkirk Estate, Skipton, Yorkshire, 19-21 Jul: Akkord, Chris Finke, Pinch, Elijah & Skilliam, Deathmachine, Dub Mechz, Gantz, Compa, Jay Clarke, Facta, Viers, Northern Lights, Spin Doctor & Mo Fingaz, Phatworld, Formless. www.summersaturnalia.com

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UNIVERSAL PARTNERS WITH BANG & OLUFSEN
Following the announcement last week that indie band Mew had done a deal with Bang & Olufen's B&O Play brand, mega-major Universal has now announced a similar partnership. The first project under the deal will be between the audio company and UMG's Deutsche Grammophon classical label at an event at Fabric in London on 8 Apr.

Bang & Olufsen CEO Tue Mantoni told CMU: "We are extremely proud to join forces with Universal Music, and to make common cause for excellent sound with a global leader in recorded music. Universal Music works with some of the greatest artists and labels of all time, and they share our mission of bringing people musical experiences that are as close to the original as possible".

Meanwhile Universal Music Group International CEO Max Hole added: "We're very pleased to be teaming up with Bang & Olufsen. Our artists are driven by excellence in creating their music while Bang & Olufsen stand for excellence in listening to and enjoying music; we're very excited about what we can achieve by working together".

More information here.

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[PIAS]'S CO-OP ACQUISITION APPROVED
European regulators have approved the acquisition of the Co-operative Music distribution and marketing business by rivals [PIAS], according to Music Week.

Co-operative Music was originally the label services business of the V2 label that was, and became part of Universal Music when the major acquired the V2 Europe business in 2007. Universal then committed to sell Co-operative Music as part of its agreement with the EC competition regulator to get the green light for its acquisition of the EMI record company.

[PIAS] was expected to bid for Co-operative Music as soon as Universal's EMI deal and resulting remedies were confirmed, though it was one of the last of the post-EMI sell-offs to be confirmed last month. All of Universal's EMI divestments, including the sale of the Parlophone Label Group to Warner, require EC approval.

The [PIAS]/Co-op deal is thought to be worth £500,000, and also gives the independent music firm ownership of what remains of the old V2 label (which isn't much).

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INVESTMENT FIRM ACQUIRES CONCORD MUSIC GROUP
US-based independent Concord Music Group has new owners in the form of Wood Creek Capital Management.

Concord confirmed it was looking for a buyer late last year, seemingly after existing owner Village Roadshow Entertainment Group agreed with the music company's management team that a change of ownership was desirable to enable the label's expansion ambitions, something Village Roadshow wasn't in a position to fund.

Despite rumours that Simon Fuller might bid for Concord (and merge it with former EMI division Parlophone, which at the time he was also bidding for, ultimately unsuccessfully), it always seemed more likely that a less dramatic private equity deal would be the outcome, not least because the sale was led by the label's existing management team who planned to stay in place after any deal.

According to a statement, Wood Creek has led the acquisition in part at the instruction of an investor group that includes some members of Concord's management team. The firm's President and CEO, Glen Barros, will continue to lead the company, while current Chairman, Norman Lear, will retain an advisory role as Chairman Emeritus.

Confirming the acquisition, Barros told CMU: "While I'm extremely proud of what Concord has accomplished to date, there's such an incredibly bright future ahead of us. It was vitally important, therefore, that we find the right investors with whom to continue this exciting journey. And I know that we've found the right people with Wood Creek. It's clear to me that we have compatible values and goals. We also have the human and financial resources necessary to excel and we share a deep commitment to making a great contribution to the future of music".

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BMG ANNOUNCES BIG DEAL ALLIANCE
BMG has announced a big (I'm guessing) deal with new US-based independent music publisher Big Deal Music, the new business of industry veterans Kenny MacPherson, Dave Ayers, Jamie Cerreta, Michael McDonald and Pete Robinson, at least three of whom previously worked for the Chrysalis music publishing company, which is, of course, now part of the BMG empire.

BMG will provide "state-of-the-art administration and pro-active exploitation services" for the new publishing independent in North America and various European markets, with the possibility of jointly signing talent down the line too.

Confirming the deal, MacPherson told CMU: "We're all very happy to be in business with BMG. Several of us have a long history with Chrysalis Music so there's a comfort level here knowing we'll be working alongside many of our friends. We look forward to growing our business along with them".

Meanwhile BMG big cheese Hartwig Masuch said: "I am absolutely excited to be working closely with Kenny again, one of the most credible people in the music industry and somebody I've known since our days at Warner/Chappell in the late 80s".

Amongst the acts already signed to Big Deal are My Morning Jacket, Jim James, The Black Angels, Ethan Johns, Missy Higgins, FIDLAR, The Walkmen and Korey Dane.

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SPOTIFY LAUNCHES TV AD CAMPAIGN, DENIES IMMINENT TV-ON-DEMAND PLANS
While the original dotcom era delivered plenty of expensive-looking and totally undecipherable TV ad campaigns by those early web-based businesses, who usually dabbled in television advertising in the week between securing their first $100 million in investment and going bankrupt, the consensus in the digital domain ever since has often been that the most successful companies build audience in more organic and 'social' ways, and without costly above-the-line activity.

But then, sometimes, digital firms find themselves in increasingly competitive marketplaces with a niche product that shareholders insist must go mainstream pronto, and the old fashioned 'throw a few million at telly advertising' option starts to look attractive again. And, lo and behold, Spotify launched a seemingly US-focused TV advertising campaign yesterday, with a spot appearing during the American version of talent-show mediocrity 'The Voice'. Additional spots on the NBC and MTV channels are expected in the coming weeks.

The three ads that will appear as part of the campaign have concurrently emerged online. Promoting music as much as Spotify itself, with slow-mo imagery, ambient sounds and dry male voiceovers (whatever happened to that lovely "Roberta from Spotify"?), the promos do sort of make it look like the streaming service's users are primarily self-absorbed pretentious wankers. But hey, these ads are primarily aimed at Americans, and they are a crazy, crazy people. Perhaps the crowd surfing tool, partying frat boys and sad old bus wanker will appeal to that lot.

The Spotify ad campaign, thought to be costing in the region of $10 million, launched alongside a fresh round of rumours that the Swedish streaming service had ambitions to be the television as well as be on it, ie that a TV or film-on-demand spin-off set up is in the works. These rumours have done the rounds before of course, and are partly fuelled by the assumption by some experts that only combined movie-music-telly streaming services have truly mainstream potential.

It still seems more likely that would come about through the acquisition of a Spotify by a Netflix, rather than the expansion of a Spotify to compete with a Netflix, but who knows? Though Spotify boss Daniel Ek issued a "never say never, but not now" response to the latest rumours yesterday, telling C-Net: "I won't rule it out because we're a company that looks at what we're doing incredibly long term. But right now, we're all focused on music".

So there you have it. And here are the Spotify ads...

www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwd3aCXYncM
www.youtube.com/watch?v=6HRMF1HXIb0
www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-wbGBc4BuY

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NME RADIO CLOSES
NME Radio has shut down again after another franchisee decided that it couldn't make a radio spin-off of the music magazine work. Unlike the radio station equivalents of Bauer-owned magazines, which are run by Bauer's own radio business, the NME radio service has always been run by a third party which licenses use of the name off publisher IPC.

The station was originally set up by DX Media, led by original Xfm founder Sammy Jacob, in 2008. Although a third party operator, it worked closely with the magazine's editorial team, with a base at IPC's London HQ. But two years later DX Media stepped away from the venture, saying it just wasn't commercially viable.

Welsh radio company Town & Country Broadcasting launched a revamped NME Radio in 2010, and continued to operate it until yesterday lunchtime, though by the end much of the service was back-to-back music with an evening show hosted by Michelle Owen.

It was she who confirmed the station was off the air by tweeting: "To those asking, it's with sadness I inform you NME Radio is no longer on air", adding: "A massive thanks to the bands and artists who did sessions and chatted, thanks to you for listening to new and real music. [I'm] still on air every day on Nation Radio, weekdays on Bridge FM and Sundays on Q!"

The MD of Town & Country subsequently confirmed that his company had handed back both NME Radio's OfCom licence and its licence from IPC to operate a service under the music mag's brand, telling Radio Today: "NME Radio isn't part of Town and Country's core media business in Wales and we've decided to concentrate in expanding Nation Radio (which is now testing on DAB in Wrexham and Chester) and launching DAB transmissions in Mid and West Wales later during 2013".

NME Radio was available via various digital platforms over the years as well as online, though the nmeradio.com domain as of today is linking straight through to NME.com.

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BUZZMEDIA RELAUNCHES AS SPINMEDIA
American blog and website operator Buzzmedia has announced that it is relaunching under the name SpinMedia. This follows the company's purchase of the iconic American music magazine Spin last July, and comes as the firm raises another $15 million of funding.

Although Buzzmedia closed Spin's print operation after acquiring the mag, bosses seem confident that the brand's future online is strong. The name-change also better differentiates the company from the ever-expanding Buzzfeed, which officially launched its UK operation yesterday.

The company's new CEO Steve Hansen, who replaces now Executive Chair Of The Board Tyler Goldman, told CMU: "At our core, we understand how to tap into fan obsessions across pop culture and music through authoritative brands that connect with one in four millenials. Now, we're strengthening our lead with a completely new technology infrastructure that better serves fans, delivering them compelling content and creating unforgettable experiences that they can consume anywhere, anytime with an unmatched richness and depth. We're also creating unique advertiser integrations that leverage our brands' abilities to connect with consumers online and offline".

He added: "Our mission has never wavered. We indulge our obsessive passion for culture - and invite you to come along. Our users are like us, sharing our passion and thirst for more. That thirst is rarely quenched. There is always a new band, new song, new fashion, new drama. Today's digital world gives us unprecedented opportunities to connect our audience to the things they love. We believe that the story only begins when the publish button is pushed".

The company will be split into two divisions, SpinMedia Music and SpinMedia Entertainment. Online brands within the group, other than Spin itself, include Celebuzz, Buzznet, Idolator, Stereogum, Videogum, Hype Machine, XLR8R, PureVolume, Gorilla Vs Bear and Brooklyn Vegan.

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POP POWERLIST RETURNS TO 4MUSIC
4Music will again consider who are the most powerful on-stage players in pop this weekend with 'The Pop Powerlist', a follow-on from a similar list show this time last year. The 50 most powerful popsters will be presented, based on stats compiled by Media Measurement that consider social media reach, critical recognition, airplay, endorsements and media coverage.

Last year Adele topped the poll. Not sure who's favourite this time round, though if online pop chatter and download data from this week was included in the mix, it'd probably be PJ & Duncan.

On the poll, Box TV man Dave Young told CMU: "We're excited to see the return our hit show 'The Pop Powerlist'. Last year Adele stole the crown, but this year there's tough competition from the likes of pop royalty One Direction, Rihanna and Beyoncé. Series one was a huge hit with our viewers, seeing a 103% uplift for the timeslot it premiered in. There is a huge appetite to define who the ultimate movers and shakers are in the pop world and 'The Pop Powerlist' is the definitive measure of influence".

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WAY COMMENTS ON MCR "ENDING"
Now, if any of you thought that My Chemical Romance "died" when the band announced their split this weekend, well, you're sorely mistaken. I mean, "died', how ridiculous. They clearly "ended".

Writing poetically (aka pretentiously) about his band's split, MCR main man Gerard Way took the concept of TwitLonger to its extreme in a long post, in which he remarked: "I woke up this morning still dreaming, or not fully aware of myself just yet. The sun poked through the windows, touching my face, and then a deep sadness overcame me, immediately, bringing me to life and realization - My Chemical Romance had ended".

He later added that "My Chemical Romance is done", though quickly added: "But it can never die. It is alive in me, in the guys, and it is alive inside all of you. I always knew that, and I think you did too".

Writing about what motivated the split of MCR after twelve years together, Way revealed that the need to end it came to him during a live show last May via an inner voice (or possibly a very pesky roadie whispering into the stage monitor). Says the MCR man: "All that was left was the voice inside, and I could hear it clearly. It didn't have to yell - it whispered, and said to me briefly, plainly, and kindly - what it had to say. What it said is between me and the voice".

So there you have it. MCR has ended. Well, until the reunion at Coachella 2016 anyway.

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