An UnLimited Media Bulletin
Tuesday 18 March 2014

TODAY'S TOP STORY: A third person has died following the incident at the South By Southwest festival last week, in which an allegedly drunk driver crashed into pedestrians. Austin City Police named the deceased as 26 year old Sandy Thuy Le. As previously reported, Rashad Owens crashed into more than 20 people while feeling from police in the early hours of Thursday morning, many of whom were queuing outside... [READ MORE]
TODAY'S APPROVED: First approved back in 2012, and a regular on the CMU stereo for a couple of years prior to that, Labyrinth Ear will finally release their debut album, 'The Orchid Room', on 14 Apr. Leading the way for the new longplayer is first single 'Crescent Moon', a eerie house track that feels like a memory of a dancefloor, a song to soundtrack a late night/early morning walk home through city streets. If the... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Third SXSW crash victim dies
LEGAL Beastie Boys settle with toy maker over parody ad
DEALS SONGS acquires exploitation rights in Gershwin works
LABELS & PUBLISHERS Japanese record industry reports 15% decline for 2013
Primary Wave launches urban AC division
DIGITAL & D2F SERVICES UBC confirms 7digital merger moving forward
MEDIA Paul Williams to leave Music Week
BBC's Britpop celebration to revive Lamacq and Wiley's Evening Session
OBITUARIES Scott Asheton 1949-2014
RELEASES One Direction releasing RSD vinyl single
Release Round-Up: Liars, Rita Ora, Sia, Jhene Aiko and Kyan
GIGS & FESTIVALS Rolling Stones cancel Australian show
Example confirmed for third Great Escape Dome show
Gigs & Tours Round-Up: Peace, Conor Oberst, Wye Oak and Courtney Barnett
Festival Line-Up Update: Camden Crawl, Y-Not, Melt! and more
AND FINALLY... Vogue hires Kate Moss to critique new George Michael album
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Third SXSW crash victim dies
A third person has died following the incident at the South By Southwest festival last week, in which an allegedly drunk driver crashed into pedestrians. Austin City Police named the deceased as 26 year old Sandy Thuy Le.

As previously reported, Rashad Owens crashed into more than 20 people while feeling from police in the early hours of Thursday morning, many of whom were queuing outside the city's Mohawke venue to see Tyler, The Creator later cancelled performance. Two people died from their injuries at the scene - an Austin resident knocked off a moped, and the creative director of Dutch music company MassiveMusic, Steven Craenmehr, who was knocked off a bicycle.

Le, also an Austin resident, was one of 23 hospitalised for their injuries and died yesterday morning. Seven more people remain in hospital, one of whom is in a critical condition.

Rashad Owens has already been charged with capital murder. It is yet to be decided whether Le's death will affect his charge. He is being held on $3 million bail.

Beastie Boys settle with toy maker over parody ad
The Beastie Boys have settled their legal dispute with toy company GoldieBlox, though terms of the settlement are not known.

As previously reported, the surviving Beastie Boys objected when GoldieBlox used a reworked version of their 1987 song 'Girls' in a video promoting the firm's toys, noting that while they respected the toymaker's mission to make toys for young girls that break down gender stereotypes, they had long held a resolve to never licence their music for ad sync.

Although GoldieBlox reps insisted that they were Beastie Boys fans and hadn't wanted to offend the group, the company then claimed that it felt its rework of 'Girls' constituted a parody, and therefore the company didn't need permission to post the new version online under American fair use rules.

The toy company then filed legal papers seeking judicial confirmation of that claim, though reportedly told the Beastie Boys' reps that they'd withdraw that lawsuit if the group pledged to take no action against the company over its use of their song.

The Beastie Boys subsequently filed their own litigation against the toy firm citing copyright infringement, unfair competition and misappropriation of publicity rights. Although the group's legal claim covered various grounds, had it got to court it would have tested the American copyright system's parody exemptions, and whether the use of a parody in a commercial context like this has any impact on the fair use right.

GoldieBlox's legal case in this particular dispute wasn't without merit, though it has been noted that the toy firm has posted promotional videos featuring a number of pop reworks some of which probably wouldn't constitute parody.

Both parties' lawsuits will now be dismissed.

SONGS acquires exploitation rights in Gershwin works
US-based independent music publisher SONGS has acquired the exploitation rights to a chunk of the George Gershwin catalogue which will see the company "create and deploy creative strategy" for works created in the latter part of the legendary composer's career. The deal includes music from 'Porgy And Bess' and songs like 'Summertime' and 'They Can't Take That Away From Me'.

Confirming the deal with the Godowsky family, Gershwin's decedents, SONGS boss Matt Pincus told Billboard: "As a global contemporary co-publisher, this is not our typical deal. It came about organically as Jon Keidan [trustee for the Gershwin/Godowsky Trust] and I are long-time friends. But the chance to work with Jon and his family on this singular, truly world-class set of songs is a once in a lifetime opportunity for me and the people at SONGS".

Although George Gershwin died in 1937, meaning his standalone compositions are now out of copyright in Europe, in the US music from his era still has copyright protection, whilst collaborations with lyricists who died later may also ensure copyright protection elsewhere too.

Japanese record industry reports 15% decline for 2013
Ahead of the publication later today of this year's annual digital report from the International Federation Of The Phonographic Industry, the Japanese record business has released it's 2013 stats which, after a series of uplifts reported in Europe, aren't so upbeat.

Both physical and digital revenues slumped last year, the former - still by far the most dominant revenue stream in Japan - down from 310.8 billion yen to 270.4 billion. Digital slumped too, down 23% overall, which makes for depressing reading when elsewhere digital booms (overall, even if download income has peaked) are now compensating for continued physical sale declines.

That said, download services of the kind that have dominated in Europe and the US in recent years did see some good growth in Japan in 2013, the slumps being experienced by the sorts of pre-smartphone mobile music services that were uniquely popular in the Japanese market. And indeed, the Recording Industry Association Of Japan classifies download sales via smartphones as 'internet' rather than 'mobile-based' music purchases, making the mobile music revenue stream look very much in decline.

Overall the Japanese recorded music market saw revenues fall 15%. A slow release schedule can probably account for some of that steep decline - with labels already reporting a more healthy 2014 - though peculiarities to this market in the shift from physical to digital content is also a major factor. It remains to be seen if the new rise of iTunes-style download services in Japan and the very-much-in-its-infancy-in-this-market streaming sector can help the Japanese record industry recover in the years to come.


Primary Wave launches urban AC division
Primary Wave Music has announced the launch of a new Urban AC division (that's urban adult contemporary everybody, aka urban pop for grown ups). The new unit will be headed up by Grammy-nominated Eric Benét, who is managed in his capacity as an artist by Primary Wave's management business.

Confirming his new job, Benét told CMU: "I've been recording music for over 20 years and I love the creative process of making real music, with real artists. Joining the Primary Wave family on this new creative level will allow me to take on a different role in the music industry and lend my decades of experience to new and established artists during the recording process".

Benét will be joined by Ken Wilson who will head up promotions for the company's urban operations. Confirming all that, Primary Wave Music's top man Larry Mestel told CMU: "I've been working with Eric for many years and this new appointment only formalises the great working relationship that we've already had in place. Plus, by adding the radio expertise of Ken Wilson to the urban division, we now cover all bases, with the power of Eric's production talent during the recording-process to make the hit, combined with Ken's promotional skills to make sure people know and hear the hit".

UBC confirm 7digital merger moving forward
7digital's merger with radio industry content maker and service provider UBC Media Group is one step closer after the latter confirmed a heads of terms had now been signed by both parties outlining the basics of how the consolidation will work.

UBC is already listed on London's Alternative Investment Market while MP3 seller 7digital is privately owned. This transaction would basically be a reverse takeover, giving 7digital a stock market listing and creating a combined business with interests in digital music delivery, audio content production and service provision for the digital content and broadcasting sectors. Merger talks are in theory still ongoing, though UBC expects to publish a document in late May which will formally set things in motion.

Meanwhile UBC has confirmed Audioboo, the audio content platform in which the media company has a 39% stake, is set to be acquired by a corporate vehicle called One Delta, in which the media company would then own a 20% stake. The arrangement should provide Audioboo with new finance for future growth.

Commenting on all this, UBC CEO Simon Cole told investors: "Our aim is to create a new public company via 7digital which will be perfectly placed to exploit the rapidly developing market for online and mobile music services. The evidence is that the growth in this market will be in curated services which consolidate music and radio in one place and our new company will be perfectly placed here".

He went on: "Our strategic investment in Audioboo complements this well and I'm pleased that today we have found a way to both finance Audioboo's future at a good valuation and secure value for our shareholders in any future growth".

Paul Williams to leave Music Week
Former Music Week editor Paul Williams, latterly the title's Head Of Business Analysis, is leaving the magazine after almost eighteen years next month, it was announced yesterday.

Williams said in a statement: "Music Week has been a big part of my life for many years and I shall be very sad to say goodbye, but there was an exciting opportunity for a career change that I just couldn't turn down. I wish everyone on the staff all the very best for the future".

An announcement of exactly what his new role will entail is expected to be announced shortly.


BBC's Britpop celebration to revive Lamacq and Wiley's Evening Session
The BBC will celebrate British pop's naughtiest 1990s chart craze - Britpop - with a week-long season of Britpop-based radio/TV programmes in April. Apparently it's Britpop's 20th anniversary this year, which explains why, between 6-11 Apr, BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 6 Music and BBC Four will air a series of themed specials, interviews, and a listener-decided Top 40 chart of the era's greatest hits.

As well as inviting Elastica's Justine Frischman, Creation Records' Alan McGee and Food Records' Andy Ross to appear on his daily BBC 6 Music show, Steve Lamacq will also co-host a nightly revival of 'The Evening Session', his and Jo Whiley's classic 1990s Radio 1 show, on BBC Radio 2. Both Lamacq and Wiley will talk Britpop highs n lows with the likes of Gaz Coombes and Sleeper's Louise Wener, whilst Chvrches and Sophie Ellis-Bextor will share takes on favourite hits from 'back in the day'.

Whiley says this of revisiting 'The Evening Session': "I will always jump at the chance to work with Steve. He is my radio 'other half' and we did fight the Britpop wars together after all. It was a great time to be a DJ on UK radio but, as ever, when you're in the eye of the storm, you are blissfully unaware. It's only in hindsight that you appreciate what a privilege it was to live and work through such an exciting time for British music".

Steve adds: "For me, this is the week 20 years ago that the musical tectonic plates shifted. On the Tuesday, Oasis played live on Radio 1 for the first time and on the Friday morning we heard the news of Kurt Cobain's death. It was as if one scene had announced it had arrived, as another began to lose its way".

Click this link to find full listings for 'Britpop At The BBC.

Scott Asheton 1949-2014
Drummer and founder member of The Stooges Scott Asheton died at the weekend from an undisclosed illness. He was 64.

Born in Washington, DC, Asheton moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan with his family when he was fourteen. There he formed The Stooges with his guitarist brother Ron, bassist Dave Alexander and vocalist James Osterberg, aka Iggy Pop. The band recorded three albums before splitting in 1974, the third, 'Raw Power', going on to become incredibly influential, with the group later dubbed by many as the first punk band.

Nicknamed Rock Action by his bandmates, Asheton rejoined the group when they reformed in 2003, and he and Pop are the only two members to appear on all five of their albums - Ron Asheton having died in 2009, and Dave Alexander dying in 1975, five years after being fired from the band.

Despite this, Asheton had ceased to perform live with the band in recent years, after suffering a stroke on a flight to England in 2011. His last performance with the group was at the Austin City Limits festival in 2012.

Scott Asheton is survived by his wife Kathy, daughter Leanna, and sister Liz.

  Approved: Labyrinth Ear
First approved back in 2012, and a regular on the CMU stereo for a couple of years prior to that, Labyrinth Ear will finally release their debut album, 'The Orchid Room', on 14 Apr.

Leading the way for the new longplayer is first single 'Crescent Moon', a eerie house track that feels like a memory of a dancefloor, a song to soundtrack a late night/early morning walk home through city streets. If the rest of the album can hold that mood, then all the better.

Check out the video for 'Crescent Moon' here.
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One Direction releasing RSD vinyl single
Famed lovers-of-vinyl One Direction are releasing an ultra-rare limited seven-inch single, on wax, for this year's Record Store Day.

With the title track to 1D's 'Midnight Memories' LP on it's A-side, and a live take of another 'Midnight' hit 'Rock Me' (taken from the band's fly-on-wall film 'This Is Us') on its B, the picture disc shall, god and stock willing, be available in certain remaining vinyl shops on RSD, which is on 19 Apr.

Look at the Official Charts Company's confirmation of the release, which features a pic of its silly, silly sleeve art, here.


Release Round-Up: Liars, Rita Ora, Sia, Jhene Aiko and Kyan
Hi. So Liars are streaming their "instrinctual"-ly-made new LP, 'Mess', via a nice tidy micro-site on NPR. It's released next week, so hasten to grab an early play while you still can, whilst reading and considering Liars frontman Angus Andrew's intro to the LP's vibe...

"We are a reactionary, or maybe a better word is schizophrenic band. We go from one extreme to the other. Working on the last record was really doubtful and paranoid, and that's fine, but it just meant that when work started on this one, it was the exact opposite. It was way more instinctual, fun and confident".

Speaking of fun and confident, if not instinctual, look who it is; only British pop construct Rita Ora! Our girl Rita has kindly shared a teaser for her new smash 'I Will Never Let You Down', which features beats by her real-life BF Calvin Harris. View said teaser here ahead of the track's 11 May release date.

Hit-writer to the stars Sia is back in the spotlight as a solo artist, and will release 'Chandeliers', her first LP since 2010's 'We Are Born', on 2 Jun. Listen to its title song now.

Another poised pop lady, Jhene Aiko, the voice of Drake's 'From Time' and maker of last year's brilliant 'Sail Out' EP, celebrated her birthday recently by giving away a free new track, 'My Afternoon Dream'. Take a slice of it here.

Lastly, cool young thing Kyan has announced his first solo EP, 'The Purple Experiment', which is out just now, with a clip for its first-listed song, 'Rosetta'. It's ace, so watch it now.

Rolling Stones cancel Australian show
The Rolling Stones have cancelled a performance in Perth, Australia tomorrow night, as Mick Jagger flies back to New York following the death of his partner, fashion designer L'Wren Scott.

Journalists this morning camped out in front of the Hyatt hotel in Perth, where the band had been staying, believing that a press conference had been scheduled for 9am local time. Although the hotel denied this before and again an hour after this time passed, the press still stuck it out until late afternoon, when a statement was issued via the promoter Frontier West's Facebook page. The company confirmed that the show would not go ahead, though was unable to say if it would be rescheduled.

The band's next show is due to take place at the Adelaide Oval on Saturday, and the CEO of the venue has told that as yet no decision on whether or not the concert would take place. There has been no comment on other dates on the Stones' tour of Australia and New Zealand, which stretch into the beginning of next month.


Example confirmed for third Great Escape Dome show
Example is returning to The Great Escape for the third time this May, this time headlining the showcase festival's biggest venue, the Brighton Dome. Back in 2008 he played to a small crowd in a 200-capacity pub venue at the Brighton fest, in a set that was quickly followed by the rapper's rise to fame.

Confirming his return for a Dome show this May, Example told CMU: "A lot has changed for me since I performed at The Great Escape in 2008 in a pub to about 30 people! I played there again in 2011, so it's a real honour to return a third time and play on the festival's biggest stage. It's been an amazing journey - playing all the past hits and loads from the unreleased album five, I will ensure this is a show to remember!"

Meanwhile TGE Festival Director Kat Morris added "It is really great to be welcoming Example back to The Great Escape - from playing at one of our venues with a capacity of 200, to touring internationally and achieving two number one singles, to this year performing at our biggest venue with a capacity of almost 2000, it just goes to show the incredible trajectory of TGE artists go on to take after performing at the festival".

Example will headline the third of this year's TGE Dome Shows, with nights led, respectively, by Wild Beasts and Kelis already confirmed. That's in addition to the 250 other acts from across the world already confirmed to play Brighton between 8-10 May this year, with another 150 still to be announced.

The Great Escape festival, of course, sits alongside the CMU Insights-programmed TGE convention which brings together 3000 music business professionals from across the globe, and which will this year feature six half-day convention strands presenting original research, case studies and discussions around six key themes. Look out for details on more of those strands later this week, plus check out the lowdown on the two already announced online now. Delegate passes at £175 are available here.


Gigs & Tours Round-Up: Peace, Conor Oberst, Wye Oak and Courtney Barnett
Yo. Indie fans' dreams incarnate Peace have listed a load of live dates to follow their appearances at this year's tri-city Dot To Dot festivals on 23-25 May. The first of the band's headline shows, which will feature support acts Big Deal and Drowners, is on 27 May at Keele's University Ballroom, and the last is at the Worthing Pavilion on 13 Jun. Find the details here.

Conor Oberst is touring, too, taking on a round of UK shows in July. The tour runs from 8 Jul at Manchester Cathedral, and winds up at Glasgow's ABC on 21 Jul. This is a link to info on those shows, and this, well this is 'Hundreds Of Ways', a song off his forthcoming album 'Upside Down Mountain', and the single Oberst is releasing for Record Store Day on 19 Apr.

US folk pairing Wye Oak have their own live obligations to fulfil this summer, in the shape of a European tour. The first of the band's four UK stops is at the Islington Assembly Hall in London on 10 Jun, and the last is at Glasgow's King Tut's on 13 Jun. That's in addition to two Irish shows, at Dublin's Sugar Club on 14 Jun, and McHughs Basement in Belfast on 15 Jun. Behold its listings, and Wye Oak's wonderful new single 'Glory', now.

The also-glorious Ms Courtney Barnett is coming over to the UK, all the way from Australia, in May, to play some shows around stop-ins at Liverpool Sound City, Live At Leeds at, most wondrous of all, The Great Escape festival in Brighton. It's all in honour of 'The Double EP: A Sea Of Split Peas', which came out in 2013, so now you know.

The first of her non-festival appearances is at Newcastle's Cluny 2 on 6 May, and the British part of the trip wraps on 20 May at Joiners in Southampton, after which Courtney moves on to play Primavera Sound, and comes back on 7 Jun for Field Day in London. Go to this page to find the journey plotted more thoroughly.


Festival Line-Up Update: Camden Crawl, Y-Not, Melt! and more
So, the Camden Crawl, or CC14 as it's now named, has disclosed the first portion of its bill, which features headliners ABC, Atari Teenage Riot and The Field, and the likes of Mouse On Mars, Of Montreal, Steve Mason, Yuck, Adrian Crowley, Alexis Taylor and Au Revoir Simone.

And that's only the half of it. Stand by for more new developments at the following festival events...

BEAUTIFUL DAYS, Escot Park, Fairmile, Devon, 15-17 Aug: Steve Earle & the Dukes, Seasick Steve, Levellers, Jimmy Cliff, Dead Kennedys, Seeed, Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott, Easy Star All Stars, The Undertones, Dreadzone, Culture Shock,bReverend And The Makers, Ruts DC, Public Service Broadcasting, The Fisherman's Friends, Skinny Lister, The Computers, Chris T-T, Orphan Boy, Rusty Shackle, Treetop Flyers, Bellowhead, Tinariwen, Carolina Chocolate Drops, Seth Lakeman, Adrian Edmondson's folk-punk band The Bad Shepherds, Cara Dillon, La Chiva Gantiva, 3 Daft Monkeys, Beans on Toast, Ferocious Dog, Kim Churchill, Zervas And Pepper, Stanton Warriors, Matrix And Futurebound, Adrian Sherwood, Drumsound & Bassline Smith, Mad Professor, Bronzehead, The Moody Boyz, Simian Frenzy, Mr Nice, Elle & The Pocket Belles, One Shot, Carnevala, Josh Flowers & The Wild, DJ Ambiessence, Harry Vinnicombe, Lewah, King Farmer, Maxxi P, Jessica Joy, Ragadee, Johnny G, Ritchie Rundle, Benny, Lex, Lee, The Farmer.

BOOMTOWN FAIR, Matterley Estate, Nr Winchester, Hampshire, 7-10 Aug: Tipper, Black Sun Empire, Opiuo, Aphrodite, Proxy, Audio, Optiv & BTK, Altern8, Freefall Collective, Atomic Drop, Ray Keith & Carasel MC, Slipmatt B2B Billy Daniel Bunter, 2 Bad Mice, Slamboree Soundsystem, Sub Slayers Takeover with King Yoof & Jay Cunning, Cause4Concern, North Base, Odjbox, Itchy & Skratchy, Machine Code, Chris Liberator, The DJ Producer, Death Machine, Se7en Deadly Breaks, KrossBow, DeFunk, Caski, Benton, Amy Becker, B-Side, Shepdog, Jinx In Dub, Turntable Dubbers, Mr Benn, Dirty Dike & Jam Baxter, Uncle Dugs, Rowland The Bastard, Panacea, Detest.

CAMDEN CRAWL, various venues, Camden, London, 20-21 Jun: ABC, Atari Teenage Riot, The Field, Mouse On Mars, Of Montreal, Steve Mason, Yuck, Adrian Crowley, Alexis Taylor, Au Revoir Simone, Blizzard, Cymbals, Dirty Beaches, Ghetts, Girls Names, Halls, Jeffrey Lewis & The Jrams, Klose One, Krept & Konan, Kuedo, The KVB, Mausi, Mazes, The Oscillation, Pale Seas, Plastician, Shabazz Palaces, Tall Ships, DJ Target, Visionist, Akiine, Anneka, Autobahn, Bad Wolf, DJ Big Ted, Bird To Beast, Brawlers, Brolin, Brontide, Cattle & Cain, Claw Marks, Cocos Lovers, Crushed Beaks, Cut -Dignan Porch, The Drink, Early Ghost, Ed Dowie, Eighteen Nightmares At The Lux, DJ Emily Rawson, The Fauns, Felt Tip, Femme, Fis, Gaps, Gnarwolves, God Damn, The Grumbling Fur, Haiku Salut, Henry Blacker, Hot Feet, Jack Cheshire, Jamie Doe, Jay Prince, Joel Baker, Katie Kim, Kinnie The Explorer, Longfellow, Max Marshall, Michael A Grammar, Mickey Lightfoot, Miraculous Mule, Moon Ate The Dark, Moon Gangs, Mourning Birds, Nai Harvest, Nick Brewer, Novella, Pale, Prose, Rachael Dadd, Rhiannon The Nightmare, Shopping, DJ Shorteeblitz, Slaves, Soccer 96, Society, Spit Shake Sister, Theo Verney, Thought Forms, Tout, Whistlejacket, Whoanows, Will Varley.

CAMDEN ROCKS, various venues, Camden, London, 31 May: The Subways, Reverend And The Makers, The Graveltones, Eureka Machines, Baby Godzilla, The Hell, Rat Attack, Broken Hands, Palm Reader, Oxygen Thief, Boy Jumps Ship, Black Dogs, Healthy Junkies, Fur Cough, Bleach Blood, Goldray, Love Zombies, Mitsubishis, Shiva And The Hazards, Riskee And The Ridicule, Sonic Boom Six, Gnarwolves, Max Raptor, Straight Lines, Bleech, Messenger, The Hype Theory, Rob Jones (Missing Andy), Cytota, To The Bones, The Mercy House, Young Aviators, Legend In Japan, Flood Of Red, Messenger, Attention Thieves, Mia Klose, Burning Beaches, Vox Empire, Hey Vanity, The Dash, Damn Dice, The Derellas, Blast Until Moscow, Arms, Avosetta, The Din, The Talks, Romance, The Cramatics, Walk The Night, West Of The Sun, Chasing Cadence, Dumjaw, St Pierre Snake Invasion, Sondura, Kerri Watt, Shea, Star Scream, Milk N Kinski, Johnny Walker, Sean Gran.

EXIT FESTIVAL, Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia, 10-13 Jul: Carl Cox v Danny Tenaglia, Ben Klock v Marcel Dettmann, Eats Everything v Cassy, Luke Slater & His Planetary Assault Systems.

GREENWICH MUSIC TIME, Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich, London, 20-23 Aug: Australian Pink Floyd.

MELT!, Ferropolis, Germany, 18-20 Jul: Little Dragon, Panda Bear, Maya Jane Coles, Le1f, The Martinez Brothers, Jeff Mills, Temples, Seth Troxler, John Wizards, Dapayk & Padberg, Alle Farben, Mark Ernestus, Guy GerberMonika Kruse, Nod One's Head, Portable, Subb-an.

MOSELEY FOLK FESTIVAL, Moseley Park, Birmingham, 29-31 Aug: Johnny Marr, Thurston Moore, The Felice Brothers.

NOZSTOCK, The Farm, Bromyard, Herefordshire, 1-3 Aug: The Heavy, Molotov Jukebox, Craig Charles, James Zabiela, Friction & Linguistics, By The Rivers, Stiff Joints, Sonny Wharton, Octo-Pi, Koncept, Mat Envy, DJ Hampsta, Bwalya, Andy C & MC GQ,Calyx & Teebee, MC AD, DC Breaks, Frankee, Ray Rampage, TC, Jubei, Uncle Dugs, Joe Ford, Amoss, Despicable Youth, Scope, Modify Perspective, MC Remidy, Trafic MC, The Twisted Burlesque DJs, Electric Swing Ballroom, Mr Bliss, Phat Tony, Jitterbug, Edd Tipton, Sketch.

OPEN'ER, Gdynia-Kosakowo Airport, Poland, 2-5 Jul: Lykke Li, Wild Beasts, Ben Howard, Banks.

OPTIMUS ALIVE!, Lisbon, Portugal, 10-12 Jul: Au Revoir Simone, Bastille, Elbow, Foster The People, Interpol, SBTRKT, The War On Drugs.

PLISSKEN FESTIVAL, Athen,s Greece, 6-7 Jun: Mount Kimbie, Wild Beasts, Vitalic, Fuck Buttons, Wooden Shjips, Cooly G, D/R/U/G/S, Damien Jurado, Black Lips, Shackleton, Nightmares On Wax, No Age, 65 Days Of Static, Fink, Dirty Beaches, Crocodiles, Deadbeat, Eagles For Hands, Nadia Ksaiba, Lifelike, A Victim Of Society, Begun, Bombing The Avenue, Djuma Soundstsyem, Dotmessage, Dub Pistols, Ghost Culture, Girls VS Boys, Imam Baildi soundststem, Kyoka, Mickey Lightfoot, Nightmare Air, Noise Figures, Pad Trio, Plastic Flowers, Raketkanon, Saint Pepsi, Soft Moon, Son Lux, Suuns, Tijuana Panthers.

RELOAD FESTIVAL, Norfolk Showground, Norwich, 6-7 Sep: Kool & the Gang, Soul II Soul, Rick Astley, The Human League, Billy Ocean, Sister Sledge, Jason Donovan, ABC, Go West, Hot Chocolate, Imagination, Oddysey, From the Jam, Heaven 17, Aswad, Bjorn Again, The Real Thing.

STOCKTON WEEKENDER, Stockton Riverside Park, Stockton-on-Tees, North Yorkshire, 26-27 Jul: Public Enemy, Happy Mondays, Martha Reeves and The Vandellas, Peter Hook and the Light, Reverend And The Makers, The Amazing Snakeheads.

SUMMER SERIES AT SOMERSET HOUSE, Somerset House, London, 10-20 Jul: Franz Ferdinand, Kelis, Bastille, Little Dragon, Daughter, Kodaline, The Cat Empire, Chvrches, Sam Smith, Clean Bandit.

TRUCK FESTIVAL, Hill Farm, Steventon, Oxfordshire, 18-19 Jul: Johnny Foreigner, Gnarwolves, Sam Duckworth, Kevin Devine, Tangled Hair, Radstewart, Woahnows, Brawlers.

WICKERMAN FESTIVAL, Kirkcarswell Farm, Galloway, Scotland, 25-26 Jul: Dizzee Rascal, The Feeling, Martha Reeves and The Vandellas, The Zombies, Big Country, Finding Albert, Model Aeroplanes.

Y-NOT FESTIVAL, Pikehall, Nr Matlock, 1-3 Aug: Frank Turner And The Sleeping Souls, Razorlight, Shed Seven, Ella Eyre, Swim Deep, Saint Raymond, Beans On Toast, Yuck, Circa Waves, DZ Deathrays, Menace Beach, The Wytches, King Pleasure & The Biscuit Boys, Amber Run, Nordic Giants, Tiger Cub.

Vogue hires Kate Moss to critique new George Michael album
Vogue has provided an interesting view into the world of a music reviewer. And I'm sure anyone who's ever worked in this field will recognise their own lives in the article. From the artist personally dropping the CD round to your house, to your musician spouse providing you with a bunch of quotes so there's some actual discussion of the music in your piece.

The article in question is actually a review of George Michael's new album, 'Symphonica', by Kate Moss. Essentially a collection of anecdotes about her life as a friend and fan of Michael, it does indeed begin with a story about the singer dropping a CD round to Moss's house (apparently leaving wordlessly straight away). And while she does talk at length about the "vulnerability, openness and richness" of Michael's voice, all opinion on the rest of the record is drawn from her husband, The Kills' Jamie Hince.

It's probably fair to say that any review that features an anecdote about dancing to one of the songs in the artist's own living room isn't going to be the most balanced piece of criticism. Still, if Moss's conclusion (unless you count the ALL CAPS proclamation of love at the very end as a conclusion) is that "everyone should experience this", who are we to argue? I haven't yet experienced the new record myself, but I'm pretty sure that it is the life changing experience that Moss describes.

Speaking of life-changing experiences, George Michael has told The Big Issue that he hasn't smoked marijuana in eighteen months, saying: "I've completely stopped. I have decided to change my life and I haven't touched it for well over a year and a half. [Now] I watch 'Corrie' [instead]. Especially because it's more of a laugh. Even when life is tragic on 'Coronation Street', it's still funny".

So, there's a thing. And another George Michael-related thing is that the BBC is preparing for its annual campaign to generate as many angry articles as possible about providing unfair amounts of free promotion to a single musician; last year fronted by Gary Barlow.

To be fair, the Beeb isn't actually doing that much for Michael as his new record is unleashed this week. Radio 2 will air a two-part documentary on the singer - the first going out tonight at 10pm, with the follow-up at the same time on 25 Mar. Then on an undisclosed date in April, BBC One will broadcast highlights of Michael's 'Symphonica' at the Opera Garnier in Paris last September.

Says the singer of this: "I'm delighted the BBC is broadcasting the Symphonica concert, which was recorded at the Opera Garnier in Paris, a stunning setting in which to perform a gig dedicated to a charity that's so close to my heart. It was a magical night, so I'm thrilled that fans will get the chance to experience it, as well as hearing the behind-the-scenes story on Radio 2".


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