An UnLimited Media Bulletin
Tuesday 25 March 2014

TODAY'S TOP STORY: So people, can you all cope with battling yet another new front in the long-running music piracy war? Though don't worry, enemy number one remains the same. Yes, it's big, bad, bold, belligerent, boisterous, bullish, bullying, bulldozing, brash, brutal, but brilliant Google. Research firm NPD Group has thrown the spotlight on the rising trend of smartphone-based music piracy, suggesting... [READ MORE]
TODAY'S APPROVED: Those of us starved of genius girl pop since Girls Aloud called it a day have had a number of Xenomania-produced acts to get briefly excited about - from Frank to Mini Viva. Best of all is Florrie (aka Florence Arnold) who, not content with being a drummer and model, has also shown herself to be a dab hand at writing and singing sassy, occasionally bittersweet but utterly perfect electro-pop... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES NPD report puts focus on mobile music piracy
DEALS The Veronicas sign to Sony
Disney to acquire Maker Studios
LABELS & PUBLISHERS Paul Williams to join Sony/ATV in corporate comms role
BRANDS & MERCH Pitbull links with Playboy
DIGITAL & D2F SERVICES Spotify halts third party app programme
MEDIA Roger Wright to leave BBC Radio 3
Xfm Scotland to return next month
Sound It Out and Great Hip Hop Hoax director crowdfunding new film
ARTIST NEWS GWAR frontman Dave Brockie dies
Abz to miss out on 5ive's Big Reunion Tour
RELEASES Pixies detail compilation LP, Indie Cindy
GIGS & FESTIVALS Las Kellies, Wreckless Eric, Guided By Voices to play Fire Records anniversary shows
Gigs & Tours Round-Up: Status Quo Chad & Dave, Tove Lo, The Amazing Snakeheads and La Sera
Festival Line-Up Update: Roskilde, Radio 1's Big Weekend, Y-Not and more
AND FINALLY... Ariana Grande's dog piss toe snap
Click JUMP to skip direct to a section of this email or ONLINE to read and share stories on the CMU website (JUMP option may not work in all email readers). For regular updates from Team CMU follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Tumblr.
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NPD report puts focus on mobile music piracy
So people, can you all cope with battling yet another new front in the long-running music piracy war? Though don't worry, enemy number one remains the same. Yes, it's big, bad, bold, belligerent, boisterous, bullish, bullying, bulldozing, brash, brutal, but brilliant Google.

Research firm NPD Group has thrown the spotlight on the rising trend of smartphone-based music piracy, suggesting that it's on the humble mobile device that record companies and music publishers are facing their next big piracy challenge, as an increasing number of apps appearing on the scene that enable users to tap into free and usually unlicensed sources of music content.

According to Re/Code, the research company says in a new report that "some 27 million people in the US have used mobile applications to get at least one song in the past year, much of it believed to be unauthorised". Meanwhile NPD analyst Russ Crupnick is quoted as saying: "In the beginning, we had feature phones with ringtones and very slow networks. As the technology improves, it becomes a free for all for someone who wants free music files".

Of course the shift of online piracy from PCs to net-connected phones has been anticipated for some time, though bandwidth issues and inflexibilities in the way the mobile internet initially worked originally made accessing unlicensed music services this way less attractive. But smartphones, faster connections, more plentiful mobile data packages and user-friendly apps connected to dubious banks of music files are helping overcome the limitations.

Which means that while the growth of the mobile internet as been an opportunity for the music business to date - especially in the burgeoning streaming market, with subscription services being able to charge a premium for mobile functionality - labels and publishers are starting to discover the down side, not least because the industry's now pretty sophisticated anti-piracy machine (with its takedown notice issuing and domain-blocking tactics) is generally focused on PC-based piracy services.

Though the growth in mobile piracy noted by NPD in its new report hasn't gone entirely unnoticed by the music rights sector. For them, the immediate target is the apps that enable people to access unlicensed content on their smartphones with minimum effort, some of which look like pretty legitimate set-ups. And that means targeting the stores that distribute these apps, and that mainly means Apple and Google's app distribution platforms.

Both app stores have terms and conditions that forbid copyright infringement, though there are the usual ambiguities as to what constitutes infringing activity (given many apps are contributory rather than direct infringers), and the onus is often on the rights owners to spot the offenders. Though insiders say that because Apple scrutinises new apps more closely, it is the Google app store where the real problems lie.

One popular Android app is Music Maniac which, according to Re/Code, the Recording Industry Association Of America has already asked be removed from the Google store multiple times, but so far without success.

Though, of course, the aforementioned ambiguities about the liabilities of app makers like those behind Music Maniac might be behind the web giant's reluctance to act, most legal precedent to date on so called contributory infringement online focusing on P2P software, BitTorrent search engines and link communities, and digital locker services.

Nevertheless, it adds another gripe to add to the music industry's Google list; with the music industry already of the opinion the company is doing too little to stop the listing of clearly copyright infringing services in its search results.

The Veronicas sign to Sony
Australian pop goths The Veronicas, aka twin sister act Lisa and Jessica Origliasso, have signed a new deal with Sony Music.

The pair's rocky liaison with past label Warner Bros, which meant the release of a third Veronicas LP being held back several times, came to a close last year.

Fast forward a bit, and the band are officially 'back', and making their first LP since 2007's 'Hook Me Up' in LA right now. Look in on that via this 'making of'-type trailer, which features brand new tracks 'Did You Miss Me' and 'Back To You'.


Disney to acquire Maker Studios
The rapid growth of the so called multi-channel networks - sort of the record labels of the YouTube-verse - has been proven again with the news that Disney is buying one of the market leaders, Maker Studios, in a half a billion dollar deal that could value the company as high as $950 million if certain performance targets are met.

Maker Studios, which works with creators and content partners to manage, promote and monetise YouTube-based channels, will continue to operate as a standalone company within the Disney group.

Confirming the mega-bucks deal, Disney chief Robert Iger told reporters: "Shortform online video is growing at an astonishing pace and with Maker Studios, Disney will now be at the centre of this dynamic industry with an unmatched combination of advanced technology and programming expertise and capabilities".

Meanwhile Maker Studios CEO Ynon Kreiz said: "Disney is synonymous with the best entertainment and is the ideal partner for us, strengthening our position as the leading player in online video".

Paul Williams to join Sony/ATV in corporate comms role
Music publishing giant Sony/ATV has announced that former Music Week Editor Paul Williams will become its new VP Communications next month. Based in the company's London office, Williams will oversee all corporate communications and media relations globally, reporting direct to CEO Marty Bandier.

Announcing the news, Bandier said: "Paul is a seasoned music professional who has an extraordinary and knowledgeable understanding of the global publishing industry as well as its evolving digital landscape. He is well versed in the struggles our songwriters and artists face each day and I'm thrilled to have Paul on board to lead the communications efforts for Sony/ATV".

Williams added: "Sony/ATV is home to many of my favourite songs and songwriters and is a company I have followed closely and admired for many years. I cannot wait to be part of Marty's team, at what is a truly exciting time of change for music publishing".

As previously reported, Williams announced his departure from Music Week after seventeen years at the title last week.

Pitbull links with Playboy
"Global music superstar" Pitbull, real name Armando Christian Pérez, has hooked up with Playboy Enterprises, Inc in one of those a "strategic partnership" things. So that's nice. No, wait, it isn't nice at all. Nice is what it isn't.

Pérez's affiliation with the brand is - claims this press release - meant as a "creative cross pollination" of his world and Playboy's, translating to collaborations on various "content, experience, and product-related initiatives". The first and so far only one of those initiatives is the forthcoming official clip for P-Bull's new single 'Wild Wild Love (feat GRL)', which was filmed at the Playboy Mansion earlier this month.

Pitbull, who joins the Playboy party as the brand celebrates its 60th year selling sex, poses this motion: "In order to become an iconic brand you have to partner up with one", before asking: "What's more iconic than Playboy?"

And he also adds: "It's an honour to partner with Playboy Enterprises - Ladies and Gentlemen you are looking at the new Playboy, Armando Christian Pérez".

Playboy CEO Scott Flanders adds: "Throughout our history we've collaborated with artists and cultural tastemakers who both embody the Playboy lifestyle and interpret it in their own images. Today we're taking a big step in re-interpreting our enduring brand for a new generation by welcoming Armando into the fold. His magnetic energy, charisma and style combined with his clear talent as an entrepreneur exemplify the aspirational lifestyle that defines our brand. We're looking forward to doing some great things together".

Spotify halts third party app programme
Spotify has announced that is no longer accepting new submissions for apps to run within its desktop software.

Originally announced with some fanfare back in 2011, Spotify's third party app platform allowed companies to build their own apps to complement the company's music streaming offering. However, the makers had to host the apps themselves and were forbidden from monetising them.

In its statement yesterday, Spotify said: "Since [launching the third party apps platform] partners have been asking us for a cheaper and easier way to own a presence inside Spotify and developers would like more ways to integrate Spotify with their own applications. Pair that with the growing importance of mobile and we realised we needed to adapt".

What this means in the short term is that no new apps, other than those which have already been approved, will go live, and Spotify will only allow critical updates to be made. In the longer term, it sounds as if Spotify is planning to integrate more data and content from key partners directly into its software, as it does with gig recommendations from Songkick, for example. As for everyone else, they will be encouraged to create standalone web apps that pull in Spotify libraries and playlists.

Roger Wright to leave BBC Radio 3
Controller of BBC Radio 3 and Director of the BBC Proms, Roger Wright has announced that he will step down from both roles, after almost fifteen years with the Corporation, in September to take up the position of Chief Executive of Aldeburgh Music.

BBC Director General Tony Hall said of Wright: "Over the last fifteen years Roger has made a huge contribution to the BBC, through the success of both Radio 3 and [his] seven seasons of the Proms. He has been a fantastic champion of classical music across the BBC and has raised the profile of the Proms every year. We wish him well at Aldeburgh Music and will be looking to build on his achievements at Radio 3 and the Proms".

Wright himself added: "I am honoured to have been invited to lead Aldeburgh Music at such an exciting time in its development. However, I am sorry to be leaving the BBC, having enjoyed such a long and fulfilling period at Radio 3 and the BBC Proms, and with the arts due to be such a key part of its immediate future under Tony Hall's leadership. I am fortunate indeed to have been able to work with fantastically creative and hard-working colleagues".

Co-founded by composers Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears with opera director Eric Crozier in 1947, Aldeburgh Music's central project is the annual Aldeburgh Festival. It also runs various other events and artist development programmes. Wright is replacing Jonathan Reekie, who announced his departure to become Director of Somerset House in December.

Recruitment to replace Roger Wright is due to begin shortly. If you want to brush up on what tasks his roles include, then you should have a read of the interview he did with CMU last summer.


Xfm Scotland to return next month
Xfm has announced 7 Apr as the date of its return to the airwaves in Scotland, specifically Glasgow, where it will replace Real Radio XS on the 96.3FM frequency. This follows owner Global Radio's recent shake-up of its brands portfolio, initiated by its acquisition of the GMG Radio company, and its subsequent deal with Communicorp to offload some FM franchises and licence back to the Irish media firm some of its content and brands.

As with Xfm's Manchester station, much of its output will be syndicated from its London counterpart, though there will be some original programming too. Original Xfm Scotland presenter and, for that matter, CMU co-founder Fraser Thomson will present the breakfast show, while Jim Gellatly will handle drivetime, and Tom Russell will be in to present weekend breakfast.

Xfm Managing Editor, Chris Baughen said: "Coming back to Scotland after nearly six years away is huge for us. We're really excited to be returning to our loyal listeners across the country. We'll continue to support emerging Scottish bands, as well as Xfm favourites from across indie, alternative and rock music".

Meanwhile, Thomson added: "Scotland has a strong connection with music so Xfm is a great station for Scotland. I'll be squeezing loads of tunes into four hours, unearthing some new gems and digging out some old favourites".

Xfm Scotland originally launched in 2006, replacing one-time independent new music station Beat 106, before being rebranded as Galaxy Scotland in 2008, and latterly Capital FM Scotland (which will continue to air on Xfm's original Scottish frequencies)


Sound It Out and Great Hip Hop Hoax director crowdfunding new film
Documentary maker Jeanie Finlay has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to raise money to finish her latest film, 'Orion: The Man Who Would Be King'.

Findlay has previously directed documentaries including 'Sound It Out', about the last record shop in Teeside, and 'The Great Hip Hop Hoax', about hip hop act Silibil N Brains, who tricked the music industry into believing they were from LA, when in fact they were from Scotland. 'Orion', meanwhile, tells the story of Jimmy Ellis, who for a brief period in the late 70s donned a masked and let people think he was Elvis. Something, amazingly, a lot of people did.

Explaining further, Finlay said: "Ten years ago my husband and I bought this record at a car boot-sale. It's on Sun Records, on gold vinyl. I played it and heard this unmistakable voice. I immediately wanted to find out more about the mysterious masked man on the cover. What I uncovered was a rollercoaster story of the Nashville music scene in the wake of Elvis Presley's death. Orion's mask and his incredible voice ignited a fantasy and hundreds of thousands of people believed that Elvis might be alive. It's an extraordinary story and I knew immediately I wanted to make it into a film".

She continued: "I've worked for almost five years meeting and interviewing everyone who was close to Jimmy 'Orion' Ellis to tell his story and now I'm ready to finish the film. It's an extraordinary story and every dollar, pound or euro pledged helps us get nearer to the finish line".

The Indiegogo campaign is aiming to raise $50,000 to finish the film. Read more, put in some money here, and watch a trailer here.

  Approved: Florrie - Seashells
Those of us starved of genius girl pop since Girls Aloud called it a day have had a number of Xenomania-produced acts to get briefly excited about - from Frank to Mini Viva. Best of all is Florrie (aka Florence Arnold) who, not content with being a drummer and model, has also shown herself to be a dab hand at writing and singing sassy, occasionally bittersweet but utterly perfect electro-pop.

Florrie, like Xenomania, is no stranger to unconventional song structures (witness the ridiculously simple genius of her 'I Shot You Down' or, of course, their Girls Aloud track 'Biology') and 'Seashells' similarly sticks two fingers up at pop convention by literally not bothering to include a chorus. A hypnotic dance track (albeit one only three minutes long) that's more of a groove than a song, 'Seashells' is rather good, albeit best treated not as an OMG-listen-to-this-single but as more of an experimental track.

'Seashells' is taken from the Sirens EP, which is released in April. The video is previewing on YouTube now.
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GWAR frontman Dave Brockie dies
GWAR frontman Dave Brockie, better known as Oderus Urungus, was found dead at his home on Sunday, police confirmed to CBS 6 yesterday. The cause of death has not yet been determined, although foul play is not suspected. Brockie was 50.

Brockie formed GWAR in 1984 and was the only member of the band to feature in the line-up continuously throughout their career. Speaking to Style Weekly, former GWAR bassist Mike Bishop said: "Dave was one of the funniest, smartest, most creative and energetic persons I've known. He was brash sometimes, always crass, irreverent, he was hilarious in every way. But he was also deeply intelligent and interested in life, history, politics and art".

He continued: "His penchant for scatological humours belied a lucid wit. He was a criminally underrated lyricist and hard rock vocalist, one of the best ever. A great frontman, a great painter, writer, he was also a hell of a bass guitarist. I loved him. He was capable of great empathy and had a real sense of justice".

Brockie's death follows that of guitarist Cory Smooth, who died of a heart attack on the band's tour bus in 2011.


Abz to miss out on 5ive's Big Reunion Tour
It hurts to have to break this to you all, but Abz Love won't be joining 5ive's increasingly threadbare line-up when Sean, Richie and Scott tour with the other boybands off of ITV's 'The Big Reunion', citing "personal reasons". He's definitely not left 5ive permanently, though, nor does it mean a split is on the cards, so it's all gravy.

It's as Abz told The Daily Star only yesterday: "I've definitely not left. All is gravy with me and the boys. We are still together. 5ive aren't splitting up".

And there that is. But the 'Big Reunion' shows must go on, and so 5ive's Thr33 remaining men will hit the road with the likes of Blue, 911, Damage, A1, 3T and 5th Story on the previously reported 'TBR Boy Band Tour', which starts in mid-October.

Pixies detail compilation LP, Indie Cindy
Pixies have revealed details on what's to be their first LP since 1991's 'Trompe Le Monde'.

'Indie Cindy', which shares its title with the single the band released all the way back in September, will feature their 2013 'comeback' track 'Bagboy', and compiles all the songs from the three EPs they've reeled off over the past year.

It was made in the main in late 2012 with longtime Pixies producer Gil Norton, at which point ex-bassist Kim Deal, since she doesn't play on any of its tracks , was already estranged from Black Francis et al.

Copies of the longform 'Indie Cindy' will ship on 28 Apr, via the band's label, Pixiesmusic. It'll be available either as a 2CD pack, or on double-vinyl, with the CD editions including an additional 13-track live disc dating back to Pixies' tour of North America earlier this year, which features the replacement for Deal's replacement, Paz Lenchantin, on bass.

In the meantime, the four track 'EP 3' is available online right now via

And the LP's tracklisting:

What Goes Boom
Greens And Blues
Indie Cindy
Magdalena 318
Silver Snail
Blue Eyed Hexe
Ring the Bell
Another Toe In The Ocean
Andro Queen
Jaime Bravo

Las Kellies, Wreckless Eric, Guided By Voices to play Fire Records anniversary shows
London-based label Fire Records is celebrating its thirtieth anniversary with a series of events in the capital in May.

The first show, on 15 May at Oslo in Hackney, will star approved Fire signees Las Kellies, with Scott & Charlene's Wedding, punk trio Fawn Spots and the brilliant Keel Her playing The Lexington the following day. Rock n roller Wreckless Eric will play live at his own 60th birthday party on 7 May, also at The Lexington, and also (also) a nod to the fact that Fire are re-releasing his classic LPs 'Le Beat Group Electrique' and 'The Donovan Of Trash' in May.

In a third night at The Lexington on 18 May, Stewart Lee is set to MC a live release party for Guided By Voices's second LP of 2014, 'Cool Planet', which is out 19 May. The band actor Paddy Considine plays in, Riding The Low, and Band Of Pricks, will both support.


Gigs & Tours Round-Up: Status Quo, Tove Lo, The Amazing Snakeheads and La Sera
In what looks like turning out to be the most rockin tour of all time, kings of mince Status Quo are going to play lots of UK shows at the end of the year, with support from CHAS & DAVE. Acting as a lap of honour for the deluxe reissue of The Quo's 1972 LP 'Piledriver', which also comes with its own ale, for crying out loud, the tour starts on 6 Dec at Liverpool's Echo Arena, and comes to a close at the Brighton Centre on 20 Dec. Happy Quo-mas.

Hitting the circuit in May for a pair of shows is Stockholm-born alt-pop artist Tove Lo, who'll play at London's Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen (on 6 May), and Manchester's Deaf Institute (7 May) ahead of this year's Great Escape Festival. And here, indeed, are the details on the dates, which are arranged off the back of Tove Lo's 7 Apr-released first EP, 'Truth Serum'.

Scots garage-rock rabble The Amazing Snakeheads are making a few live appearances in May. And April, when on 22 Apr they'll play an Xfm X-Posure Live showcase at the Barfly in London. After that, it's on to Glasgow for a show on 25 Apr, and on again over the UK for a further nine shows, plus slots at Liverpool Sound City and Live At Leeds. Click this URL for full listings, and this other one to view 'Here It Comes Again', the new single off the group's debut LP, 'Amphetamine Ballads', which is out on 14 Apr.

And finally, as the world continues to mourn the really, really rubbish news that the Vivian Girls have split up for good, comes a small ray of light in the form of ex-VG Katy Goodman's band La Sera, who are coming over to Europe in May to play live some. Once in the UK, they'll stop at London's Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen (23 May), Leeds' Wardrobe (24 May), and Sticky Mike's Frog Bar in Brighton on 25 May. Check the dates here, and 'Losing To The Dark', the lead single off La Sera's new LP, 'Hour Of The Dawn', which is released on 2 Jun, here.


Festival Line-Up Update: Roskilde, Radio 1's Big Weekend, Y-Not and more
BBC Radio 1 has announced that a host of DJs - like Annie Mac, Zane Lowe, Pete Tong, Danny Howard and so forth - will broadcast live on the station from Glasgow's George Square on 23 May, in so doing 'kicking off' Radio 1's free Big Weekend festival in the city. 14,000 free tickets to this specific part of the Weekend will be released this Friday via the Radio 1 site, if you fancy registering to win a pair.

Staying on a Big Weekend tip, the festival's line-up now comes with added Pharrell Williams and The 1975, since both names got announced by that Nick Grimshaw the other day. Pharrell's hat has this to say about it: "I am so excited and honoured to be playing Radio 1's Big Weekend. Over the years I've been in awe of the amazing world-class talent at the event and to know that I will be a part of it this year is so humbling. Can't wait to see you guys!"

You guys, look on for the latest bill-updates from your favourite festivals...

BBC RADIO 1'S BIG WEEKEND, Glasgow Green, Lanarkshire, 23-25 May: Pharrell Williams, The 1975, Danny Howard, Annie Mac, Pete Tong, Zane Lowe.‎

DOWNLOAD, Donington Park, Derbyshire, 13-15 Jun: Against Me!, Monster Magnet, The Wildhearts, Chevelle, Arthemis, Orange Goblin, Lawnmower Deth, Page 44, Royal Blood, The Dirty Youth, Marmozets, Vamps, Kid Karate, The Magnus Puto Band, No Hot Ashes, Colt 45, Drones, Tax The Heat.

FOREST LIVE, various venues, full dates TBA: The Pogues.

ROSKILDE, Festivalpladsen, Darupvej, Roskilde, Denmark, 3-6 Jul: The Rolling Stones.

WEEKEND AT THE EDGE OF THE LAKE, Geronde Lake, Sierre, Valais Alps, Switzerland, 27-29 Jun: Gramatik, Kink, DJ Food, Cheeba & Moneyshot, Culoe De Song, Mop Mop, Lack Of Afro, Synapson, Karocel, Kadebostany, Soul Minority, Emel Mathlouthi, Le Bal 2 Vieux, BBLK feat The Layders, Sarah Quartetto.

Y-NOT, Mouldridge Lane, Matlock, Derbyshire, 1-3 Aug: Goldie Lookin Chain, Max Raptor, The James Warner Prophecies, Bare Knuckle Parade.

Ariana Grande's dog piss toe snap
Pop type Ariana Grande broke three of her toes after slipping in a puddle of dog urine, left by her dog Ophelia, on Sunday evening. This news was helpfully revealed by her manager Scooter Braun on Twitter and Instagram yesterday. Which is, I'm sure, what she wanted him to do.

Braun posted a screenshot of a text message from Grande, in which she told him: "Had a party last night and in front of a lot of people I slipped on a surprise pile of Ophelia piss, slammed into a wall and broke three toes".

We have consulted the powers that be and it has been decided that this occurrence of a pop person falling over is even better than the time Justin Bieber walked into a door, or a window, or down some stairs, or even that time a window caused him to fall down some stairs.

I don't think Scooter Braun needs to worry about his biggest client going rogue any more. This girl's a keeper.

ANDY MALT | Editor
Andy heads up the team, overseeing the CMU bulletin and website, coordinating features and interviews, reporting on artist and business stories, and contributing to the CMU Approved column.
Email (except press releases, see below)
CHRIS COOKE | Co-Publisher, Business Editor & Insights Director
Chris provides music business coverage, writing key business news and analysis. Chris also leads the CMU Insights training and consultancy business, and is MD of CMU publisher UnLimited Media.
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ALY BARCHI | Staff Writer
Aly reports on artist news, coordinates the festival, gig and release round up columns, and contributes to the CMU Approved column. She also writes for CMU's sister title ThisWeek London.
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SAM TAYLOR | Commercial Manager & Insights Associate
Sam oversees the commercial side of the CMU media, leading on sales and sponsorship, plus helps manage and deliver the CMU Insights training courses and consultancy services.
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CARO MOSES | Co-Publisher
Caro helps oversee the CMU media, while as a Director of UnLimited Media she heads up the company's other two titles ThisWeek London and ThreeWeeks Edinburgh, and supports other parts of the business.
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