An UnLimited Media Bulletin
Thursday 3 Jul 2014

TODAY'S TOP STORY: Music emporium Rough Trade is to launch a third British base inside Nottingham's Creative Quarter following a new alliance with another indie record store chain, Rise. The Rough Trade retail company has taken a majority stake in Rise and, as an offshoot of the deal, that company's MD Lawrence Montgomery - who established the franchise in 2007 with his dad, Fopp founder Gordon Montgomery... [READ MORE]
TODAY'S APPROVED: Ryn Weaver is completely unknown, has only been on Facebook for a few weeks, and has just one track on her SoundCloud profile. So when it went online last week, it was a massive boost to have artists like Charli XCX, Hayley Williams and Jessie Ware all tweeting about it. It's almost as if she's already got a lot of money behind her. Cynicism aside, 'OctaHate' is a really good track and deserves the... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Rough Trade links with Rise chain, confirms Nottingham shop
LEGAL Katy Perry sued over song similarities
Dotcom passwords must not be shared with the Feds, says judge
Final arguments presented in Tulisa blogger assault trial
SoundCloud responds to takedown frustrations
Plans to web-block move forward in Singapore
ENTERTAINMENT RETAIL YAM Records to open in Peckham
ARTIST NEWS Ed Sheeran is well streamed
Madonna teases Messiah
New Prodigy album nearing completion
RELEASES Sunn o))) and Scott Walker hangin out, doin shit
The Vines back with double LP
GIGS & FESTIVALS Cate Le Bon presenting Perfume Genius at new Welsh festival
AND FINALLY... Jedward rescued by coastguard after becoming stranded on sandbank
A rush of blood to the mouth: Chris Martin off the veg
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Rough Trade links with Rise chain, confirms Nottingham shop
Music emporium Rough Trade is to launch a third British base inside Nottingham's Creative Quarter following a new alliance with another indie record store chain, Rise.

The Rough Trade retail company has taken a majority stake in Rise and, as an offshoot of the deal, that company's MD Lawrence Montgomery - who established the franchise in 2007 with his dad, Fopp founder Gordon Montgomery - has been made manager of Rough Trade's regional retail operations.

The Nottingham branch, which RT HQ says is only the first in a string of new UK stores opening "in the near future", adds to the Rough Trade empire's east and west London sites, and, on the far side of the proverbial 'pond', its NYC store, which opened last year. So that's four, four Rough Trade shops (for now). Ah ah ahhhh.

Montgomery Jr, who already oversees Rise stores in Bristol, Worcester and Cheltenham, has this to say: "Rough Trade defines the past, present and future of music retail like no other brand, so I'm delighted to be joining Rough Trade during this incredibly exciting period, helping bring their much loved and respected form of music retail to cities across the UK, starting with Nottingham".

Meanwhile Rough Trade Director Stephen Godfroy says: "Lawrence is a tremendously exciting addition to the Rough Trade team. He gives us valuable regional UK perspective and an abundance of energy at precisely the right moment".

He adds: "City centre retail is often overshadowed by the bar and restaurant sector in terms of providing places of communal vibrancy, so we hope to liven things up a little by giving innovative artists and independent thinkers a place to unite, creating places that aren't afraid to experiment and rattle expectations".

Further details are expected soon.

Katy Perry sued over song similarities
Having already angered Muslims with the pop promo for her track 'Dark Horse', Katy Perry has now managed to outrage Christians too with the very same track. I assume leaders of the Jewish faith are already playing the record backwards, just in case.

Though whereas Perry's 'Dark Horse' video annoyed many Muslims, it's one specific Christian who is angry about the song. Christian rapper Flame, real name Marcus Gray, has taken offence because he reckons Perry's hit lifts from his 2008 Gospel Music Association Dove Award-nominated track 'Joyful Noise'.

And, because people will now think of Perry's hit whenever they hear his track, 'Joyful Noise' has been, says Gray, "irreparably tarnished by its association with the witchcraft, paganism, black magic and Illuminati imagery evoked by the same music in 'Dark Horse'".

Gray and his collaborators on 'Joyful Noise' have now gone legal, after his DJ, Cho'zyn Boy, alerted him to online chatter about the similarities between the two records. Having posted a composite of the two tracks on SoundCloud, the DJ told Rapzilla: "What listeners are hearing is Katy Perry's 'Dark Horse' at 66 beats per minute and they're hearing Flame's 'Joyful Noise' at 76 beats per minute".

He went on: "When they're separated, they seem a bit different, but when you bring them to the same tempo and you just change her pitch down one octave, they're identical ... When things are that similar, it's hard to dispute".

Whether there actually is a copyright infringement case to answer here remains to be seen, though if Gray's backing track was indeed lifted by Perry, whose own first album was classified as Christian rock, I can't believe God would approve. Though tedious Jesus would probably tell Gray to turn his other hip hop cheek and forgive the pop girl. Which is no fun at all.


Dotcom passwords must not be shared with the Feds, says judge
A judge in New Zealand has ruled that if Kim Dotcom shares passwords with police in the country, so they can access encrypted files on computers they seized from the MegaUpload founder in 2012, they are forbidden from sharing the codes with the US authorities.

Files on the hard disks seized from Dotcom as part of the Mega shutdown in January 2012 have been the subject of quite a bit of backwards and forwards in legal terms. Dotcom's people want access to the seized files to help prepare his defence, meanwhile investigators in New Zealand want to be able to open the encrypted documents.

Dotcom said he'd provide the passwords if he got access to the files himself, though later added that he wasn't certain he remembered the codes, but would likely be able to work them out if he had access to the data.

The whole thing has been moving towards some kind of compromise, except that New Zealand officials said that if they got the passwords off Dotcom they'd want to pass them onto the FBI in the US, who also have copies of the seized computer files as part of their criminal investigation into the old MegaUpload business.

Team Mega opposed the sharing of the passwords with the Feds, not least because a New Zealand court had already ruled that investigators there should never have let the Americans take copies of the seized digital data back to the States in the first place.

And yesterday a judge back the Mega men on this issue, ruling that if and when police do get the passwords they want in New Zealand, there'll be no passing of that information over to the FBI. Though Dotcom himself admitted on Twitter that he expects the Feds have already hacked their way into any encrypted documents anyway.

As much previously reported, the Americans are still trying to extradite Dotcom and some of his ex-MegaUpload colleagues to face criminal charges of copyright infringement and money laundering in relation to the now defunct file-transfer and video sharing business.


Final arguments presented in Tulisa blogger assault trial
Tulisa Contostavlos will now have to wait until 25 Jul to find out the verdict in her trial over allegations she assaulted a man at last year's V Festival. Meanwhile the final day of arguments in the case at Chelmsford Magistrates Court were nearly scuppered when a key witness failed to show up.

As previously reported, celebrity blogger Vas J Morgan claims that the singer attacked him while in a "drunken and angry state" as he was leaving the festival last summer. Her assistant, Gareth Varey, is also on trial, accused of using threatening behaviour.

Contostavlos says that Morgan has led a "vendetta" against her ever since an incident in which she asked for him to be removed from the VIP area of a London club. She also said that she suspects him of being involved in the leaking of her sex tape.

Morgan claims that Contostavlos punched him in the eye, causing it to swell up. However, the evidence for this centres on a photograph said to have been taken by singer Royston Legore but later deleted.

Other witnesses to the alleged attack were Misha B, Mutya Buena, Alexandra Burke and Wretch 32, none of whom were called to give evidence.

Tulisa's legal team, as well as her manager Jonathan Shalit, argued in court that Legore's alleged photograph never actually existed. Morgan counters that Legore deleted the picture because he was scared that coming forward with it might have a negative impact on his own music career.

Legore himself was unable to shed any light on the matter, because he missed a flight from Italy. Keen to wrap up the trial, after initially putting proceedings on hold judge Angus Hamilton decided to continue on without Legore's testimony, describing the situation as "very frustrating". Closing arguments having now been delivered, Hamilton will announce his judgement on 25 Jul.

Tulisa's former N-Dubz bandmate Dappy also recently appeared at Chelmsford Magistrates Court on assault charges. He was found guilty of slapping a man outside a nightclub in the city.


SoundCloud responds to takedown frustrations
SoundCloud has issued a statement following accusations that it has given Universal Music "direct" access to its database in order to remove unlicensed content.

This follows the publication of an email between DJ Mr Brainz, real name Greg Morris, and SoundCloud's copyright team on the Do Androids Dance? blog. In the email exchange, in which Morris questioned why some of his mixes had been axed from the digital audio sharing platform, a rep explained that they had been "removed directly by Universal", adding that "SoundCloud had no control over it".

In a statement to Mixmag, SoundCloud said: "As a responsible hosting platform, we work hard to ensure that everyone's rights are respected. In the case of rights holders, that means having processes in place to ensure that any content posted without authorisation is removed quickly and efficiently".

It continued: "In the case of users, that means having separate processes in place to ensure that any content removed in error can be reinstated equally quickly. If any user believes that content has been removed in error - for example, because they had the necessary permissions from Universal Music and/or any other rightsholder - then they are free to dispute the takedown".

What isn't clear is whether the removal of Morris's tracks from SoundCloud was the result of a standard takedown notice issued by Universal - as is the norm on the audio-sharing platform and many other similar sites - or whether the mega-major has some sort of privileged access to directly remove infringing tracks from the site's database.

It's not unprecedented for some user-upload sites to give bigger rights owners, or agencies which help labels with the takedown process, tools that enable them to directly block infringing content, saving time for both rights owner and upload site. Talk of Universal "directly" removing content outside of SoundCloud's control implies such access, but the email isn't particularly specific.

Morris's frustration with takedowns on SoundCloud follows the announcement last month from US producer Kaskade that he was leaving the audio-sharing site because of the frequency with which his uploads were blocked by other rights owners. Though takedowns on the site are hardly new; the big labels have been pretty proactive in policing the presence of their content on SoundCloud for a while now, and likewise the digital company has been pretty efficient at enacting takedowns for sometime as well.

People like Morris and Kaskade sometimes get more frustrated with takedowns on SoundCloud (than, say, YouTube) because they are paying the digital company to host their mixes on the site. Though, of course, SoundCloud subs cover bandwidth not any licensing that may or may not be required for any one track (in the UK that's where Mixcloud has the edge).

In his email, Morris also expresses frustration that SoundCloud can't specifically tell him which tracks have triggered the takedowns, plus he's pretty certain that the offending works are being used elsewhere on the SoundCloud platform, likely without licence, by higher profile users like Mixmag and Skrillex. Though, of course, copyright law doesn't compel rights owners to be consistent in their takedown issuing, in that labels can choose to turn a blind eye if they recognise there is a promotional value to an unauthorised usage.


Plans to web-block move forward in Singapore
Content owners in Singapore are hoping that new laws allowing web-blocking could be enacted by the end of the year.

As previously reported, web-blocking, whereby rights owners force internet service providers to block access to websites that enable copyright infringement, is being used in an increasing number of countries as part of the battle against online piracy.

In some countries the blocks have been secured in court under existing copyright legislation, whereas in others new laws have been necessary. Law-makers in Singapore were reported to be considering such new rules earlier this year.

And, according to The Straits Times, a public consultation on web-blocking in the island nation has now been completed, with rights owners responding very favourably to the proposals, which would enable web-block injunctions to be secured in just two months.

Obviously web-blocking has its opponents - with critics pointing out that blocks are easily circumvented - but the mood in Singapore currently seems to be that this is a measure worth introducing.

YAM Records to open in Peckham
Oh heck, let's all (ALL) go ahead and move to Peckham, in London's SE15 postcode, for it's apparently the coolest and most happening place on and/or off earth. I say this because the area is gaining ANOTHER (as in, in addition to Rye Wax, est earlier this year) independent seller-of-records, this time named YAM, which stands for 'You And Music'.

Launching over the August Bank Holiday at Units 12-14 of K&S Indoor Market, 135A Rye Lane (aka only meters away from Rye Wax), the shop will specialise in a "very select" range of "mostly secondhand funk, soul, boogie, jazz and beyond"-type vinyl, and new independent releases, with a splash of cassette tapes on the side.

Tom Lawes of local party promoters Wholemeal Music, who co-owns the store with DJ/crate-digger Theo Kozlowski, says this: "We'll also be stocking some choice cuts from the larger labels but want to focus on the little guys - a small shop for small labels!"

View the YAM FB page here.

  Approved: Ryn Weaver - OctaHate
Ryn Weaver is completely unknown, has only been on Facebook for a few weeks, and has just one track on her SoundCloud profile. So when it went online last week, it was a massive boost to have artists like Charli XCX, Hayley Williams and Jessie Ware all tweeting about it. It's almost as if she's already got a lot of money behind her.

Cynicism aside, 'OctaHate' is a really good track and deserves the outpouring of love - good promotion alone doesn't get you over half a million plays in a week. Produced by Passion Pit's Michael Angelakos, it also features contributions from Benny Blanco, Cashmere Cat and Charli XCX.

Have a listen for yourself here.
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Ed Sheeran is well streamed
Good news for fans of...

1. Ed Sheeran's smiley face.
2. His new long playing sound recording 'X'.
3. Record Breakers.
4. Streaming media delivered by Spotify Limited.
5. One new album generating more Spotify streams in a week than any other new album.
6. 'X' being streamed 6,248,130 times during week of release in the UK.
7. 'X' being streamed 23,792,476 times during week of release worldwide.
8. Daft Punk having a previous UK streaming record removed from their clammy hands.
9. Eminem having a previous global streaming record removed from his shabby clutches.
10. Mr Kevin Brown Esquire, Label Relations Head Boy at Spotify HQ.
11. Record companies being commended for "incredibly effective strategies".
12. Record companies being commended for their Spotify embraces.
13. All and any talk of "spikes" in fan engagement.
14. 77 word quotes.
15. Lists containing fifteen items.

Here's Kev: "We're delighted to see the massive success of Ed's new album, not only on Spotify, but across all formats. The label rolled out an incredibly effective strategy, embracing Spotify from before release date. They made seven tracks available prior to release - each triggering an automatic notification to Ed's 1.8 million fans on Spotify. The resulting spike in fan engagement right before release will in no small part have contributed to its runaway success in week one".

Well done Ed, this is for you.


Madonna teases Messiah
Madonna is up to her old (but oddly young-looking) tricks again; hashtagging this and that meaningless phrase, and spreading a million weird hints/red herrings to hide her tracks. Literally. Or not. I really don't know what Madonna's game is.

Whatever her game might be, it may or may not involve a thing that's "coming soon" entitled 'Messiah', seen here as the header to a piece of sheet music with some notes on it. Notes you can hear being played here on a load of violins! It's a song, perhaps.

Madonna's game might also involve a collaboration/collaborations, possibly in the form of a track titled 'Bitch, I'm Madonna', with Diplo, who has confirmed (as we already knew) that he and Madge spent time writing together recently.

Speaking to Mexican site Helisa Tolipan on his and Big M's working relationship, Diplo said: "I met Madonna because of her kids and then she invited me to a party. We ended up writing seven songs together. I do not usually feel pressured to write hits, but when it's an artist of this calibre, it's obvious that I want to push the boundaries a little bit further and surpass myself. One of the songs we wrote is very cool and is called 'Bitch, I'm Madonna'".

So there you go. One last thing. Disclosure will definitely not be on Madonna's new mystery LP, despite her posting a pic online of herself and them together at the Governors Ball in New York last month. Which, as these things tend to do, stirred up a whirlwind of gossip that the Disclosure boys were 'doing' her new record. Well, they're not.

This is Disclosure's Howard Lawrence with the real story (via Billboard): "She came to our gig at Governors Ball, and within a few hours, there were articles being written about how we were producing her album - and we had [only just] met her that day. How could we even have done that?"

Exactly, it's impossible. The end.


New Prodigy album nearing completion
Liam Howlett has told the NME that he's nearing completion on a "violent-sounding" new Prodigy album. The record will be the outfit's first since 2009's 'Invaders Must Die'.=

Said Howlett: "It's more violent-sounding [than 'Invaders Must Die']; it feels wilder. It's not so much old school. It's neither guitar-based not synth-based; it's kind of a mixture. It doesn't feel so radio-friendly to me; it feels like it's got a lot of edge".

He added: "I've got a new title but you can't have it. It's too early! I've written everything and I'm basically going through each track and making sure they're firing".

Sunn o))) and Scott Walker hangin out, doin shit
Scott Walker and Sunn o))) are doing something together. What? Dunno. An album maybe. 4AD is involved, so an album seems likely. Or an EP perhaps. But it's something. We have that to cling onto. Let's hold each other.

So far the only information available is on the website, which features a Scott o))) logo and the 4AD logo. So that confirms everything I said in the first paragraph.

Anyway, here's 'Epizootics!' from Walker's last album, 'Bisch Bosch':

And here's 'Big Church' from Sunn o)))'s last album, 'Monoliths & Dimensions':

Now try to imagine both of those playing AT THE SAME TIME.

Sunn o))) also released an album with Ulver earlier this year. So, they've been busy.


The Vines back with double LP
The Vines (of baggy-noughties-grunge-pop-from-Australia standing) have gone and announced a double album, just like that. And don't worry, Craig Nicholls is still wearing shades indoors. In the daytime, too.

The band's first longform release since 2011's 'Future Primitive', the 22-track 'Wicked Nature' is also the now-trio's first big independent release. It's arriving via their brand new label, also named Wicked Nature, on 2 Sep. And in the run up to that, PledgeMusic has partnered with the group on various exclusive offers, such as autographed vinyl copies, that you can find out about at

And in a third Vines 'first', 'Wicked Nature' also marks Nicholls' first go at producing, he having co-mastered disc one with Paul McKercher, and entirely mixed the second disc.

As we await the premiere on 14 Jul of lead 'Wicked Nature' single 'Metalzone', here instead is featured track 'Out The Loop'.

Cate Le Bon presenting Perfume Genius at new Welsh festival
Ms Cate Le Bon is staging a new festival on the banks of the river Teifi in Wales. Taking place on 28 Aug, Mas Mas (which is the event's name), will feature live day-to-night sets by Cate's 'Mug Museum' peer Perfume Genius, Sweet Baboo, Euros Childs, Gwenno, R Seilog, H Hawkline and, self-evidently, Cate herself. It's going to be well lush.

Mas Mas boss Le Bon says: "Thrilled to have such a wonderful throng of Welsh talent and Welsh music enthusiasts join me on the beautiful banks of the river Teifi and wildly excited to welcome the resplendent Perfume Genius into the thick of West Wales".

Hurray. Roll up and buy your £25 tickets now.

And while you look for your cash card, why not play back (and download) 'Solitude', a track Cate is giving away free to advertise a) the festival and b) a series of headline shows she's doing in September. Listings for those here.

Jedward rescued by coastguard after becoming stranded on sandbank
John and Edward Grimes, aka Jedward, had to be rescued by the coastguard after becoming stranded on a sandbank near the coastal town of Malahide, County Dublin earlier this week.

The pair, along with their cousin, apparently became trapped while walking from Donabate to Malahide on Tuesday evening. Although they set out while it was still light, the sun set before they reached their destination, and as the tide came in they became stranded, calling their mother, Susanna Grimes, to raise the alarm at around 10.45pm, according to the Irish Independent.

After attempts to track them down using their iPhones proved unsuccessful, a helicopter was launched shortly before midnight and found them shortly afterwards, alerting a team on the ground to their location. They were eventually brought back to dry land at around 1am.

Speaking to The Irish Sun, Susanna Grimes said: "The boys were getting more and more desperate as the water was coming in. Thank God the Coastguard sent the helicopter up and it found them trapped on sands near Malahide ... I was beside myself and John and Edward were very badly shaken".

John added: "What we want to get across is how quickly this all happened. This got out of hand before we even realised. We would urge young people to be very careful around water and the sea. This could have been a tragedy but for the good work of the Coastguard".

So yes, take note young people. Though you oldies, you're welcome to drown.


A rush of blood to the mouth: Chris Martin off the veg
Coldplay frontman Chris Martin has given up being vegetarian since "consciously uncoupling" from his wife, Gwyneth Paltrow, earlier this year. Though he's limiting his meat choices to animals that he could kill himself. Note that's 'could kill' not 'has killed'.

Speaking to Steve Wright on BBC Radio 2, Martin said: "I'd only eat something that I think I could kill. I'd kill a fish. Not a giraffe".

I'm not sure if he means morally or physically, cos I'm pretty sure I could kill a giraffe if I gave it a good go. Whatever, it all makes The Daily Mash and Newsthump look less like purveyors of spoof news stories and more like clairvoyants. Sort of.

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