WEDNESDAY
21 AUG 2013

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CMU TIMELINES: HMV ON THE BRINK
We're currently throwing the spotlight onto the CMU Timelines, which track developing stories in the music business over the weeks, months and years. Today another timeline following a story that is nearing its end. From Simon Fox joining HMV and his various attempts to diversify the business, through the high profile debt issues and subsequent slide into administration, and Hilco's purchase and revival of the firm. Follow the stories as they occurred here.
 
APPROVED: EAGULLS
Hating, ‘Moulting’, and nursing a substantial punk grudge since debut single ‘Council Flat Blues’, it’s Leeds’ Eagulls. Having split a seven-inch with Mazes, and released an EP (titled ‘EP’) via Canada-based label Deranged, the band are at present signed to NY label Partisan, where they’ll stay at least till their first LP is released in early 2014. New track ‘Nerve Endings’, which will trail the LP on 30 Sep, is as its title belies; pained, red-raw and tightly-wired, like it hasn’t slept, whilst still quite tuneful more>>

TOP STORIES
- Unsecured creditors will see nothing from HMV administration
IN THE POP COURTS
- German Supreme Court sides with rights owners in RapidShare battle
- The Calling frontman discharged from hospital following attack
IN THE POP HOSPITAL
- Ill Aretha Franklin "unable to travel", cancels awards appearance
AWARDS & CONTESTS
- Polaris announces UK panel event
RELEASE NEWS
- Clock ticking on Britney Spears release
- Alexandra Burke to premiere new EP via Mail Online
- Laurel Halo predicts chance of rain
- 65daysofstatic give away MP3
GIGS & TOURS NEWS
- Neil Young & Crazy Horse cancel North American dates
- Wiley stalls shows, drafts in Dappy
- The Cribs set intimate Birthdays date
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- Tesco to put entertainment at the heart of new tablet device
- iTunes Radio advert details emerge
AND FINALLY...
- Taylor aims jam jar jab at Kanye
NEVER SAY DIE - LABEL MANAGER
Never Say Die are a forward thinking electronic bass music company based in London. We are looking for a Label Manager to manage our two labels and oversee the day-to-day running of our multifaceted business. As opportunities arise for growth so do the opportunities for the role of Label Manager as we expand our PR and Management divisions.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
DEF - ARTIST PROJECT MANAGER
DEF Ltd is a London-based international music company working in the artist management sector extending into label services, rights management and publishing. DEF is working worldwide with Moby, Royksopp, The Knife, Mylo, M83, Robyn and Fever Ray amongst others. After a long, exemplary service DEF is losing a very important member of our fabric and is now looking for someone who can come in and join our small team to be an Artist Project Manager.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
THE ORCHARD - SENIOR CLIENT RELATIONS MANAGER
Reporting to the Senior Director, International Client & Video Network Services, The Orchard has an immediate opening for a Senior Client Relations Manager based out of our European headquarters in London. The position will act as a relationship, content & campaign manager for key music clients across Europe.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
PLEDGEMUSIC - GLOBAL HEAD OF COMMUNICATIONS AND PR
PledgeMusic is looking to hire a full-time Global Head of Communications and PR. The Global Head of Communications and PR will be responsible for controlling all communication originating from PledgeMusic. This is inclusive of, but not limited to, all press releases (whether generated by Pledge or third parties), presentations, onesheets and other marketing materials. The position will be based in either London or New York.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
ESSENTIAL MUSIC & MARKETING - DIGITAL SALES EXECUTIVE
Essential Music and Marketing is seeking a confident, high calibre individual to lead its digital retail representation. The position will manage partnerships with digital music services (eg iTunes), working closely with label managers and reporting to the Sales Director. This is an ideal position for someone with experience of dealing with key online accounts, looking to forward their career and skills in a dynamic and fast growing music distribution company.

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

UNSECURED CREDITORS WILL SEE NOTHING FROM HMV ADMINISTRATION
Money lenders to the old HMV Group plc have recovered £38.6 million after the sale of the flagging entertainment retailer to Hilco earlier this year, while financial and legal advisors to the defunct company will earn £15 million for their work. Unsecured creditors, including suppliers and landlords, will likely see nothing, while the old HMV pension fund will lose out on £26 million it was due.

HMV Group, of course, went into administration back in January. Hilco's acquisition of the company was confirmed in April, and resulted in 140 of the entertainment retailer's stores staying open and over 2600 jobs being saved. A report from administrator Deloitte says that that deal was worth £40.1 million, while other asset sales have seemingly raised something nearing another £14 million.

The banks which helped fund HMV's ultimately unsuccessful diversification in the years before its collapse will take the lion's share of that money, while Deloitte will also get £10 million for handling the administration. Lawyers Linklaters and property consultants Retail Agents 260 will also be paid over £2 million each.

In addition to the unsecured creditors, who will get nothing, according to the Daily Telegraph the old EMI music company is also listed as a secured creditor.

This likely relates to the fact that EMI, as a former owner of HMV, was the guarantor on some of the retailer's leases. It's not clear what happened to those liabilities when EMI was split up for sale by Citigroup, but who ever had them isn't likely to see any pay out from the administration (though it's likely said leases were taken over by Hilco or other third parties, so the liabilities may not have been realised).

As mentioned, the HMV pension fund - the beneficiaries of which are former employees from both HMV and its former subsidiary Waterstones - also loses out, though a spokesman for the fund said that this will not affect members of the pension scheme.

Chris Martin, of Independent Trustee Services Limited, a trustee of the HMV Pension Scheme, told the Telegraph: "The level of recovery for the pension scheme does not affect the benefits being paid to members as the Scheme is proceeding through a Pension Protection Fund assessment period. PPF pays set levels of compensation regardless of the amount of insolvency debt recovery so members are protected at that level. We are not aware of any factors that call in to question the Scheme's eligibility for PPF compensation".

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GERMAN SUPREME COURT SIDES WITH RIGHTS OWNERS IN RAPIDSHARE BATTLE
So another development in the long running legal battle between the content industries and Europe-based file-transfer company RapidShare.

As previously reported, there have been various court skirmishes between RapidShare and the rights industries, including cases led by the gaming and publishing industries, and another by German collecting society GEMA. Recent rulings have generally said that the file-transfer firm does have some obligations to stop its servers and services being used to enable the widespread distribution of unlicensed copyright materials.

For its part, RapidShare insists it does a whole load of stuff to help copyright owners limit the illegal distribution of their content over its platform, though some content firms insist more could and should be done. The tech company took the matter to Germany's Supreme Court last year, arguing that some of the obligations put on it by lower courts went too far. This included actively monitoring and if necessary blocking external sites that link to unlicensed material on its servers, and restricting the anonymous use of its services.

The Supreme Court's full decision on the matter is still to be published, but according to Torrentfreak the top court has basically upheld the lower court rulings. Something a spokesman for GEMA was quick to welcome, telling the site: "The confirmation of the judgment is groundbreaking because it clarifies that it's a fundamental responsibility of online storage services towards rightsholders, whose works are shared en masse through their platforms".

Rapidshare is yet to comment.

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THE CALLING FRONTMAN DISCHARGED FROM HOSPITAL FOLLOWING ATTACK
Further details about the assault and robbery of The Calling's frontman Alex Band have come to light, after the musician released a statement.

As previously reported, Band was abducted, beaten and robbed before being dumped on railway tracks in the early hours of Sunday morning as he walked to a convenience store. The Calling had performed at the Lapeer Days Festival in Michigan that night.

Band sustained a facial laceration and three broken teeth during the attack, and fractured his lower spine as he was thrown from the van. Following treatment for his injuries, he was discharged from hospital on Monday. Apparently his attackers told him he had survived the attack because he told them he was about to become a father.

A spokesperson for the singer said: "Alex was grabbed by his shirt and hit from behind and lost his footing. After Band fought back, he was cornered in the van with the gun to his face, and Band told the assailants, 'Don't kill me, I am about to be a dad'. After more beating, the assailants responded with 'We don't kill fathers' and then left him for dead at a local railroad track in Lapeer".

Band himself added: "I never thought my unborn child would be my saviour. I am grateful to be alive and I know that I am destined for bringing my music back to my fans".

There was speculation online yesterday that the attack may have been related to drugs, rather than being a random attack, or might even have been a publicity stunt. Addressing the latter point, Band told CNN: "This just happened to me. I didn't kidnap myself, or beat the crap out of myself. So the whole hoax thing is honestly kind of disgusting to even think about, or hear".

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ILL ARETHA FRANKLIN "UNABLE TO TRAVEL", CANCELS AWARDS APPEARANCE
Aretha Franklin is still seemingly tackling health issues, and as such has cancelled an appearance she was due to make at an awards event this weekend. The Queen Of Soul was, of course, hospitalised and had an operation in 2010 for an unnamed complaint, and has called off various PAs since.

In a statement released via Major League Baseball, who are hosting this weekend's gala, at which Franklin was due to accept a 'Beacon' award for her part in the civil rights movement, she said: "I greatly appreciate being a Beacon Award recipient. Presently, I am unable to travel as I continue my treatment. I am working toward a full recovery".

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POLARIS ANNOUNCES UK PANEL EVENT
Having announced the shortlist for this year's Polaris Music Prize last month, organisers of the 'Canadian Mercury' have also announced their first every UK-based 'salon event', which will take place at Rough Trade East in London on 30 Aug. The record shop will play the ten shortlisted albums on its stereo throughout the day, and will host a panel discussion on music journalism between 6.30pm and 7.30pm. Media represented on the panel will include Drowned In Sound, iD, Q and Rock Sound.

The overall winner will be announced at a ceremony in Toronto on 23 Sep.

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CLOCK TICKING ON BRITNEY SPEARS RELEASE
Time is ticking on a new 'thing' by Britney Spears. It might conceivably be a new single, or perhaps details of Spears' mythical eighth LP. Whatever the thing is, the star has been teasing it via her site, which at present features a 'Death Clock'-style stopwatch and the phrase "ALL EYES ON ME".

Fans will get to lay eyes/ears on the thing when Brit reveals it in 27 days, give or take a minute. In the meantime, The Sun claims she's headed to the Lake District with hitmaker Naughty Boy to... well, make hits and, if she's anything like Tim Key: hike, eat sheep and admire pencils in glass cases.

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ALEXANDRA BURKE TO PREMIERE NEW EP VIA MAIL ONLINE
Alexandra Burke has announced that she will release a new six track EP, entitled 'New Rules', for free later this month. Released as "a special thank you to fans", the EP will be available exclusively through the Daily Mail's website for 48 hours, before going live on Burke's own website on 1 Sep.

The EP apparently features "a sleeker, more sophisticated take on [her] signature sound", and has a guest appearance from Wretch 32 on one track. If Mail readers like that sound, then they'll be able to get more of it from Burke's third album, which she's currently working on and which is due for release next year.

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LAUREL HALO PREDICTS CHANCE OF RAIN
Critics' delight Laural Halo has, much to critics' delight, unveiled her new LP 'Chance Of Rain', which falls 28 Oct. Created via "live hardware improvisations" and featuring illustrations by Halo's father, it is, says Halo's label Hyperdub, a "cerebral exploration of the intersection between rhythmic and ambient music, drawing together ideas of movement and stillness, psychedelia and presence of mind".

As we imagine the ways in which that'll all transfer to wavelengths we can hear, this is the LP's tracklisting:

Dr Echt
Oneiroi
Serendip
Chance of Rain
Melt
Still/Dromos
Thrax
Ainnome
-Out

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65DAYSOFSTATIC GIVE AWAY MP3
No need to steal the new track by 65daysofstatic, if you please, as the band are giving it away free as a primer to their new LP, 'Wild Light', which is released 16 Sep. It's titled 'Prism', and can be heard/taken here.

And since we're all here anyway, I'll add a reminder that 65daysofstatic begin a fairly exhaustive line of live dates, not least the seven they're playing in Britain, on 29 Aug at Birmingham's Hare & Hounds.

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NEIL YOUNG & CRAZY HORSE CANCEL NORTH AMERICAN DATES
Neil Young And Crazy Horse have cut additional dates in North America to give guitarist Frank Sampedro extra time to regain his health. Sampedro sustained a mild fracture in his arm a few weeks back, this leading to the cancellation of the band's European tour.

A statement released on Neil et al's behalf reads: "We are sorry for any inconvenience this causes to our fans or the festivals where we were scheduled to appear, but the doctor indicated that Sampedro's hand requires additional time to heal properly. As you must be, we too are disappointed at this unfortunate turn of events".

Whilst the first four shows the band had planned to play won't now take place, dates starting in mid-September appear to still be going ahead.

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WILEY STALLS SHOWS, DRAFTS IN DAPPY
Hey, remember the dates Paganist Wiley was meant to be headlining in September? Well, they've been set back a bit, and have gained an additional rap star in ex-N-Dubz MC Dappy.

Wiley's reps say the delay is because extra time was needed to prepare the new Dappy-featuring set, a revision I'd have happily vetoed given the option.

Basically what I'm saying is; the reset, restyled and renamed 'Meeting Of The Minds' (Wiley's and Dappy's minds, that is) listings are:

30 Oct: Newcastle, Academy
31 Oct: Manchester, Academy 1
3 Nov: Nottingham, Rock City
4 Nov: Birmingham, Academy 1
5 Nov: Bournemouth, Academy
7 Nov: London, Shepherd's Bush Empire

Setting Dappy well, well aside till he's required, this is Wiley's new 'Flyin' vid, representing the single he's releasing via Big Dada next week.

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THE CRIBS SET INTIMATE BIRTHDAYS DATE
The Cribs will play a special set at Birthdays in London in less than a week, they decreed yesterday, so that's nice. The band's only confirmed date (so far) in the capital this year, the show will 'go off' on 27 Aug. Tickets may still be available via this link.

The Jarman Bros are also MCing mystery guests (and playing live) at an 'Old Skool' night at Leeds Academy on 18 Dec, this followed by a 'Cribsmas' show on 19 Dec which is already at capacity.

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TESCO TO PUT ENTERTAINMENT AT THE HEART OF NEW TABLET DEVICE
Tesco is reportedly planning to launch its own tablet computer in the run up to Christmas this year. The company apparently hopes to win back the attention of shoppers, who have been turning elsewhere for entertainment offerings while spending less on groceries in recent years (perhaps they're all on the iPad/iTunes diet).

According to The Times, access to music, books and films will be a key selling point of the device. Exactly what this means isn't entirely clear. The newspaper talks in terms of the tablet being "pre-loaded" with content. However, it seems more likely that free access to Tesco's Blinkbox service (if only temporarily) will be the offering included.

Tesco purchased film streaming site Blinkbox in 2011, relaunching the We7 music streaming service (which it purchased last year) as Blinkbox Music in June. The company is also currently developing a digital book offshoot called Blinkbox Books.

In addition to this, the tablet will apparently come with pre-loaded apps for other Tesco services, such as banking and, of course, grocery shopping. In terms of its overall spec, it's expected to compete directly with the basic model of Amazon's Kindle Fire, which currently retails at around £130. However, at the point of launch, it is likely to be up against the next Apple iPad Mini, Google's Nexus 7 and Amazon's new line of Kindle Fire devices.

Also not clear is what operating system the Tesco device will run, though it will most likely be a skinned version of Google's Android.

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ITUNES RADIO ADVERT DETAILS EMERGE
When iTunes Radio launches in the US next month, it will do so with brand partners including McDonald's, Nissan, Pepsi and Procter & Gamble, according to Ad Age. The multi-million dollar deals cover twelve month advertising campaigns, with exclusivity for launch partners until the end of this year. Then, in January 2014, the platform will be open to any advertiser willing to spend at least $1 million.

Advertising on the streaming service will come in audio, video and interactive display ad form - the latter taking over the full screen of whatever platform the user is listening through, whether that by desktop, mobile device or Apple TV. Audio ads will play once every fifteen minutes, and users will see one video ad per hour.

As well as the ad-supported option, those with an iTunes Match account, which currently costs £21.99 per year, will be able to use the service ad-free. The ability to purchase songs direct from the iTunes store is also expected to be a key revenue driver for both versions of the service.

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TAYLOR AIMS JAM JAR JAB AT KANYE
Taylor Swift, sweet-natured chart darling that she is, chose quite a mild (if belated, and slightly 'tart') way to get back at Kanye West, the same Kanye West who wrecked her MTV Awards acceptance speech back in 2009.

All she did really was give Ed Sheeran a jar of her DIY-made jam. This jam. Get it?

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CMU Editor Andy Malt and CMU Business Editor Chris Cooke are both available to comment on music and music business stories. Together they have provided comment and contributions to BBC News, BBC World, BBC Radios 1, 4, 5, 6music and Scotland, Sky News, CNN, Wired and the Associated Press. Email andy@unlimitedmedia.co.uk or chris@unlimitedmedia.co.uk.

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