CMU Daily - on the inside 2 Oct 2003
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
• More doom and gloom in global sales figures
• Rappers clash over download issue
• Cliff competes for festive number one
• Bambaataa picks the best east coast hip hop
• Juice Brighton goes back to Surf team
• Album Review: stellastarr* - stellastarr* (BMG/RCA)
• Radiohead Greenwood goes solo on soundtrack
• Krafty bingo launch
• Kid Rock covers Bad Company
• Stubner takes his acts to Sanctuary
• Police after Lil' Kim for 1996 offense
• Spector bail extended
• RHCP Best Of album and DVD
• BBC extend digital radio reach
• Dixie Chick hits back with comedy phone messages
• Single Review: Blondie - Good Boys (Sony/Epic)
• Hanson form label
• Gonzo tours the Barflys
• Elton John makes over a million on garage sales


Another set of sales figures - and more doom and gloom. The latest stats come from the International Federation of the Phonographic Industries who reveal that not only are global music sales down, but the decline is speeding up - sales were down 10.9% in the first half of 2003, up from a decline of 7.1% in the same period in 2002. Needless to say commercial piracy and illegal downloading is blamed. The IFPI reckons that in Germany, Japan and the US illegal downloads are now matching or exceeding commercial sales.

On the up side (because, believe it or not, there is an upside), the sale of DVD music videos show substantial growth (up 46%) and album sales in the UK were slightly up on the same period last year.


"He's a staunch American...but when you solely have an American state of mind, you're increasingly becoming a smaller part of the world." Chuck D describing fellow rapper LL Cool J yesterday when the two MCs found themselves at those US Senate investigations into music downloading - LL was there to support the record industry's litigation campaign against downloading music fans, Chuck to support the downloaders.LL: "My question is, if a contractor builds a building, should people be allowed to move into the building for free?"

Chuck: "P2P to me means power to the people. I trust the consumer more than I trust the people at the helm of these record companies."


Despite having a reputation for being there every Christmas, Cliff Richard has only actually had three Christmas number ones - in 1960, 1988 and 1990 - though his 'Millennium Prayer' came close in 1999. Either way, Cliff is going for his fourth Festive chart topper by releasing one of the tracks off his new album 'Cliff At Christmas'. The song, called 'Santa's List', has been co-written by the guy behind 'Saviours Day' - Cliff's last Christmas number one in 1990.

Talking to GMTV yesterday Cliff said: "I found a song that's never been recorded before so you won't have heard it until I release it as a single, it's called Santa's List. Obviously I like my singles, but only time will tell whether or not it'll be number one at Christmas. It's impossible to tell these days. And if someone's got a better record, I'll have to be number two."

He may, in fact, have to make do with number three, because the two favourites for Christmas number one are current The Darkness and the as yet to be decided Pop Idol winner. William Hill make The Darkness the 5-1 second favourites for the festive chart top spot - just behind the unnamed Pop Idol winner at 3-1.

Other odds for a Christmas number one are as follows: the yet-to-be-decided winner of Fame Academy - 7-1, Justin Timberlake and Girls Aloud - 10-1, Busted - 11-1, while Westlife, Robbie Williams and Alex Parks - 12-1. William Hill are yet to announce odds on Cliff


Hip hop legend Afrika Bambaataa is in London tomorrow night putting in a set at 333. This will be followed by a series of dates around the UK. The tour precedes the release of 'Eastside'. A follow up to the Obsessive released 'Westside' on which Ice T picked the most influential hip hop tracks from the West Coast, the new album sees Bambaataa select the very best of East Coast hip hop. The double CD includes tracks from, among others, . Herbie Hancock, Sugarhill Gang, Run DMC, PM Dawn, Tribe Called Quest, Wu Tang Clan, Jay Z, Outkast and Eric Sermon. It is released on 24 Nov. Those tour dates:

3 Oct: 333, London
4 Oct: Toucan, Cardiff
6 Oct: Leeds University
8 Oct: Space, Hull
9 Oct: Warwick University
10 Oct: Glasgow, Venue TBC
11 Oct: Edinburgh, Liquid rooms
12 Oct: Aberdeen, Kef
13 Oct: Dundee, Reading Rooms
14 Oct: Drum, Birmingham
22 Oct: Nottingham, Rock city
23 Oct: Event, Brighton
24 Oct: Brunel Rooms, Swindon
25 Oct: Portsmouth


Following the news Forever Broadcasting have sold the Liverpool branch of Juice Radio to Absolute, it was announced yesterday the Brighton version of the station has also been sold. Juice Brighton has been acquired by Brighton & Hove Radio Ltd, a new company formed by the people who originally set up Surf 107.2 - the station that Forever re-branded as Juice when they bought it in 2000.

One of the new company's directors, Steven Stark, told reporters: "We are thrilled to announce that Juice 107.2 is coming home. Brighton is really buzzing at the moment. The existing management team has made great progress over recent months and there couldn't be a better time to be investing in the future of this dynamic young business."

Fellow director Daniel Nathan added: "We passionately believe that the city's only dedicated local radio station should live and breathe Brighton. We look forward to working with the existing management team to create a radio station that truly reflects the people, places and sounds of our unique home town."

As part of the same deal Brighton & Hove Radio Ltd also acquire Forever Broadcasting's 35% stake in neighbouring Splash FM in Worthing.


ALBUM REVIEW: stellastarr* - stellastarr* (BMG/RCA)
So who is winning the War of Independence? Popular opinion seems to be that currently American alternative bands are superior to their Brit counterparts. I don't think I agree with that but it's true that stellastarr* are one of a new breed of quirky interesting groups emanating from the States. Post-punk is a hot influence of late and Stellastarr*s particular influence is smart art-rockers XTC. The NY four-piece have an art school / acting background. Their singer Shawn Christensen yelps like XTC's Andy Partridge, which is to say kind of like halfway between an asthmatic Matt Bellamy in a straitjacket and a hysterical Jarvis Cocker. In fact one of their tracks is called 'Pulp Song'. The songs are complex but melodic, clever but accessible. The very catchy 'Somewhere Across Forever' has already scraped in to the Top 40 and the next single, the Pulp-esque 'Jenny' could well do the same. At the very least they look set to be popular with readers of Wallpaper* and typesetters still mourning the demise of Menswe@r. JW
Release date: 13 Oct
Press contact: Hall or Nothing [CP, RP, NP] BMG IH [CR, RR, NR]


Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood will release a solo album this month in the form of a soundtrack to the Simon Pummell film 'Bodysong'. The album will be released on 27 Oct, the film will follow on 5 Dec.


Krafty Kuts and A Skillz will release their upcoming Finger Lickin album 'Tricka Technology' with a special bingo night – apparently Krafty used be a bingo caller in Bogner Regis! The launch takes place tomorrow night at the Corrib Rest in Queens Park - tickets are limited so email to book yours.

Aside from the bingo there will be live performances from Ashley 'Freak Power' Slater and The Real Elements and 4 deck wizardry from Kuts and Skillz themselves.


Kid Rock last week gave a live rendition of the Bad Company classic 'Feel Like Making Love' which word has it will be the rocker's next single, coming from his yet to be titled fourth album. Commenting on Rock's version of the song a reviewer for the Miami Herald called it "another overwrought '70s hit that fits the entertainer's Southern boogie style perfectly". Exact release dates on the new album and single are yet to be confirmed, though most of the work on the releases is complete.


Another bit of growth for Sanctuary - veteran manager Carl Stubner has joined the company's management division bringing with him clients Mick Fleetwood, Tommy Lee, The Cult and Something Corporate.


US police are apparently after rapper Lil' Kim over a drugs charge from 1996. Kim was charged with possessing cannabis back in 1996 and ordered to appear before a New Jersey court. According to the Sun, Kim never made that appearance and police have a warrant to arrest her should she reappear in town. A spokesman for Teaneck Municipal Court, New Jersey, told the paper: "There was a court date which she never appeared at. If she can't post bail, she'll be put in jail." Kim's people have yet to comment on the story.


As investigations continue Phil Spector's bail on the charges over the alleged murder of Lana Clarkson has been extended until 3 Nov. Although police investigators have ruled Clarkson's death was not suicide prosecutors are still to decide their next move. Confirming the bail extension LA district attorney spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons told reporters: "He is still free on bail and we have the case under review. I'm hoping we'll make a filing decision prior to the next scheduled bail review."


The Red Hot Chili Peppers have confirmed that two new tracks, 'Fortune Faded' and 'History', both recorded on the band's recent 'By The Way' tour, will appear on their up coming greatest hits album.

There will also be a special CD/DVD edition of the 'best of' containing fifteen videos including two that have been rarely seen before: 'Road Trippin' and 'Universally Speaking'. The videos will be accompanied by an interview with the band and behind the scenes footage of their 2000 Californication tour.

A second DVD will be released at the same time featuring the recent Slane Castle concert.


The BBC have confirmed they have switched on ten new DAB transmitters around the UK - at Heathfield, Idle, Piccadilly Plaza, Naish Hill, Manningtree, Rowridge, Dover, Bromsgrove, Sailsbury, and Bath - extending digital radio signals to a further 2.4 million people, and providing better reception to a further 2 million who were on the peripheries of existing transmission areas. Good news for anyone with a digital radio set.


Responding to recent media stories and criticisms the Dixie Chick's Natalie Maines has written on her website that she will be busy for the next few days responding to various phone messages. Said messages are as follows:

Message 1: Saddam Hussein called and wants to know where his weapons of mass destruction are. Listen Saddam, I already told you, I don't know. You're going to have to call the White House on that one.

Message 2: Country Radio called and wants to know if it's true that you're leaving country music? This one must be a prank call. I mean, how can you leave a party now when the hosts had shown you to the door six months ago.

Message 3: Sheryl Crow and Lenny Kravitz called to see if you could come to their party Friday night. Oh that one's easy. I can't, I'm already going to Ashton and Demi's party.

Message 4: G. Gordon Liddy, Rush Limbaugh and Don Imus all called again to ask about the plane crash. Listen guys this is really getting old. I'm sorry, but no, we did not die in a plane crash. But look on the bright side … we fly all the time.

Message 5: Arnold Schwarzenegger called to see if we wanted to "verk out" with him at "zee gym" next week. Hmmm, that's both weird and scary. He must not have heard what Emily "said" about him or know that we're married!


SINGLE REVIEW: Blondie - Good Boys (Sony/Epic)
We've been in the midst of an (early) 80s revival for some time now, and this year sees activity from two of the brightest stars of 1981. Whilst the reformation of Duran Duran's 'classic' line up is yet to yield new material, Blondie's second comeback single has, unlike the rather pedestrian MOR blandness of 1999's 'Maria', a healthy zest and tension about it, in no small part due to the production skills of a certain Giorgio Moroder. It could have proved an embarrassment, but enlisting one of the godfathers of synthpop is a smart move that both pays homage to the era of Blondie's heyday whilst adding a subtle touch of modernity. If not quite shameless electroclash plagiarism, the single nonetheless suggests Ms Harry and cohorts have heard the likes of Miss Kittin and Ladytron, and nodded favourably (although 'Good Boys', with its rocky guitars and powerful, passionate chorus, contrasts from the icy cool and detachment found in most Euro-centric electro-pop). Far more thrilling than it has the right to be and as good a piece of pop as you'll hear all year, 'Good Boys' is an unlikely yet welcome return to form. Who'd have thought it? MS
Release date: 6 Oct
Press contact: Sony IH [all]


Hanson (remember them?) have announced they will form their own record label - 3CG Records - in order to release their third album 'Underneath' next year. The sibling pop trio parted company from Universal label Island Def Jam last May.

Although their intention is to use the label to find and promote new artists in the future most attention will be given to promoting 'Underneath' in the short term. It will be the band's first album since 2000's 'This Time Around'.

Commenting on the label launch singer/guitarist Taylor Hanson told reporters in New York: "There have been a lot of changes happening in the music industry, and for us, starting a record label was a way to reach our fans in a new way. We're excited to take it to the next level."

3CG releases will be distributed in North America by ADA, in the UK via Universal Distribution and will be licensed to JVC in Japan.


Hot on the heals of their fifth anniversary celebrations this week, MTV2 have announced that Zane Lowe will be taking his Gonzo show on tour presenting a series of gigs at Barfly venues around the UK later this month. Dates as follows:

25 Oct: Cardiff Barfly - Funeral For A Friend, Million Dead, Kingsway, Billy Talent
26 Oct: London - Electric Soft Parade, The Hiss, Razorlight
31 Oct: Liverpool - Hot Hot Heat, Franz Ferdinand, The Fiery Furnaces
1 Nov: York - Blueskins, Futureheads, The Beatings
2 Nov: Glasgow - Snow Patrol plus guests


Elton John has raised over £1.4 million by flogging the contents of his West London home. The sale of, among other things, Elizabethan paintings, Art Deco beds and a pair of stone poodles, raised well over the £800,000 Sotheby's had estimated prior to the auction.

Sotheby's specialist Marcus Linell: "This wasn't a sale of memorabilia, but Elton's taste proved to have an extraordinarily wide appeal with enthusiastic buyers from around the world."

Elton is said to be "delighted" with the result of the sale.

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