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Hey, you know how I'm always banging on about how much I hate nostalgia? Oh, you'd not noticed. Okay, good, forget I said anything.

This week I've been getting a bit nostalgic. It all began with Eddy Temple-Morris' column for CMU, in which he wrote about the that changed him from a person who liked music into a fully-fledged, card-carrying music fan. In his case, it was Japan.

Eddy writes: "Japan were not the first band I ever heard, nor the first record I bought, but much more importantly, they were the first band I fell in love with. Think back to the first band you were SO into, that you would have done anything for them. I've heard it said 'a good song will make you late for work, but a great song will make you quit your job'. What a brilliant observation. That's what I'm talking about here, the most powerful thing, FIRST LOVE".

So, I wracked my brain to think who this might have been, who were 'my Japan'? There are a few contenders. Red Hot Chili Peppers took control of my mid-teens, and later Korn had a big effect. But I think the closest I get to Eddy's Japan thing is with REM. I don't remember at what age exactly they became such a big deal for me - some time around twelve or thirteen years old I think - but I do remember spending quite some time buying up their back catalogue (there was a lot of it) and reading books and articles about them.

But Eddy goes on, remembering how his favourite band appearing on 'Top Of The Pops' "marked something every bit as powerful and emotional as the beginning of your first love. It marked the end of my first love. I felt bitterness, betrayal, I felt jealousy and abandonment, because MY beloved band had now become everybody else's love".

I never had that moment with REM. Well, not because they became famous, anyway. Possibly because they were already famous by the time I started listening to them. We did fall out, though, but that was over their refusal to split up. And that goes back to my wish that bands would realise more often when it's time to stop, and really we'd grown apart before then (this goes for RHCP and Korn, as well).

There was another band on my list of potential first loves: Deftones. A band I've loved since their first album, and one I've never really fallen out with. Sure, we grew apart from each other for a while, I admit. When they released 'Saturday Night Wrist' in 2006, I thought that was the end, and they'd reached the point where they were simply diluting the good work done by their earlier releases. However, if this year's 'Diamond Eyes' is anything to go by, they've reversed that trend.

They may not be my actual first love, but getting a bit reflective about them is relevant now because on Wednesday night I went to see them play live for the first time in nearly a decade. But nostalgia can be a terrible thing. It can cloud the judgement when misplaced. That's what I don't like about it, see? Part of the reason I hadn't seen Deftones play for so long was because I was worried they might not be any good any more. They might ruin those memories.

Thankfully, it was a brilliant show, not for nostalgic reasons (well, not entirely), but because of a great performance and perfectly compiled setlist. Of course, afterward it brought out nostalgia's best friend - the realisation of my advancing age. Last time I saw Deftones I spent the show in the mosh pit. This time I stood well back and clapped politely. Then afterward I complained that my back hurt from standing up for so long.

Now, where are my slippers?

Andy Malt
Editor, CMU

Three significant independent record companies - Domino, Merge and the Beggars Group, which includes labels like 4AD and Matador - pulled out of eMusic this week, accusing the download service of unfavourably altering their terms in order to placate Universal Music. In a statement, Beggars said: "We have loved eMusic, and the support it has given to our music, but it was the dedicated home for independent music and is, in our view, not that any more".
A super injunction stopping the media from reporting that Take That-er Howard Donald has been battling to stop an ex-girlfriend from dishing the dirt on their relationship has been lifted, though an injunction stopping the dirt dishing itself is still in place. Donald's legal people went to court to stop Adakini Ntuli from selling her story to the tabloids after she sent the Take That dancer a text message in April which read: "Why shud I continue 2 suffer financially 4 the sake of loyalty when selling my story will sort my life out?"
The Beatles catalogue has finally arrived on the internet. Well, it arrived on the internet about twelve years ago, but now it's legal. After 24 hours of wild speculation as to what Apple's promised-on-Monday "big announcement" might be, the IT giant revealed all at 3pm on Tuesday, though by that point everyone was pretty damn certain that this time, once and for all, Steve Jobs would have a Beatles-related statement. Especially when the Fab Four's catalogue popped up on the iTunes store just after lunch.
HMV has announced that it is giving up one of its Oxford Street stores, possibly because having two shops on the London shopping thoroughfare as well as a franchise in Selfridges on the same road and another store just down Regents Street in the Trocadero Centre is sort of overkill. The retailer has confirmed it has sold the leasehold on its 360 Oxford Street store to US fashion firm Forever 21 for £13.75 million.
The Independent has announced that Elton John will guest edit the paper on 1 Dec, which is, of course, World AIDS Day. John's edition of the paper will raise awareness of that fact. He will also edit the recent Indy spin off, I. All circulation revenue from both papers that day will go to the Elton John AIDS Foundation. John told reporters: "I'm really looking forward to spending a day in the editor's chair and I'm pleased to get the chance to put the subject of AIDS at the top of the editorial agenda".
James Blunt appeared on a 5Live programme last weekend discussing his time fighting in the 1999 Kosovo War, enabling the BBC news website to run a story with the fabulous headline, "Blunt prevented World War III", in relation to an incident where Blunt held back from following the instructions of an American General to kick 200 or so Russian soldiers off an airfield in the Kosovan capital of Pristina. We all mock Blunt a bit, but clearly he's a capable guy with lots of great army stories. I can't be the only person who wishes he'd release an album of them rather than insisting on singing his songs.
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UK Festival Awards 2010 Best Line-up winner: RockNess
Last night the UK Festival Awards recognised the great and the good from this year's festival season, handing out trophies to the best events, the best performances and, of course, the best toilets (that one went to T In The Park). The award for best line-up went to Scotland's RockNess.

Unlike most categories at the Festival Awards, which are voted for by punters, this one is selected by an expert panel, including that uber-expert, CMU Editor Andy Malt. The judges consider line-ups of festivals large and small for this prize, taking into account event size, audience capacity and the budgets available to bookers. With a whole host of great acts from across the dance and rock genres, RockNess was a clear winner.

Festival Director Jim King had this to say about the win: "We are thoroughly delighted to win this award and when you look at the calibre of festivals nominated across the categories it shows how well RockNess is now respected. The bands love playing at RockNess for many reasons, but the single most important one is they just love performing in front of our crowd, and so it's the loyal RockNess customers who deserve the award more than anyone".

Having scrutinised the line ups of all the festivals up for this gong in some detail, Andy has compiled a special Powers Of Ten playlist around the RockNess 2010 line-up to celebrate their UK Festival Awards win, and explains why these ten acts were particular fab inclusions below. You can have a listen here. Though we recommend sitting next to a loch, pouring yourself a glass of whisky and adopting a Scottish accent first.

01 Fatboy Slim Praise You
  A Fatboy Slim classic, I'm sure you'll agree. And one that comes with a brilliant Spike Jonze video, which is always a bonus.
02 Crystal Castles Celestica
  Having released their second album in April Crystal Castles recently announced that they're bringing a highly successful year to a close with a new version of their song 'Not In Love' featuring vocals from The Cure's Robert Smith. This track, from the same album, is our favourite.
03 Leftfield Open Up
  Having split in 2002, Leftfield was resurrected by founder member Neil Barnes this year in order to headline RockNess, hitting the crowd with an epic set. This track, from their debut album, 'Leftism', featuring vocals from the legendary, and most butter-friendly punk frontman John Lydon.
04 Ian Brown Stellify
  Back in the olden days, Ian Brown used to front The Stone Roses. Last year he fought a hard battle with Peter Andre for Worst Album Cover Of The Year in my head. Musically there was no contest, though. Try to write a song like this one, Andre. Go on, try.
05 Plan B She Said
  Plan B's got all popular this year, hasn't he? Having started out as a gritty rapper telling it how it is, he's now a gritty soul singer making up stories about some guy he invented.
06 Vampire Weekend Horchata
  "In December, drinking horchata, I'd look psychotic in a balaclava". Oh Ezra Koenig, I do like your faux-African musical stylings, but is that seriously your idea of a good opening line for a song (and indeed an album)?
07 The Strokes Reptilia
  Having convinced Leftfield to return from the dead, RockNess coaxed The Strokes out of a four year hiatus to play this year's festival. The band have apparently now finished recording a new album. Will that album live up to this song? No, it will not.
08 Blondie Hanging On The Telephone
  Look at that, three New York bands in a row. And when it comes to New York bands, Blondie are the Kings and Queen. They may be no spring chickens, but they're still able to floor audiences with classics like this.
09 Pendulum Propane Nightmares
  Talking of flooring audiences, Pendulum do so through sheer volume. Just in case anyone at RockNess hadn't been shaken silly by the other bands on the bill already, they were on hand for some vibration therapy.
10 Aphex Twin Digeridoo
  Also known for his bone-shuddering live sets, mixed with an unhealthy amount of confusion, Aphex Twin is probably worth the price of a festival ticket alone. This classic from him rounds off our playlist nicely.
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Black Eyed Peas' Will.i.am says that the whole new Michael Jackson album, 'Michael', is disrespectful to the late singer: "Michael Jackson songs are finished when Michael says they're finished. Maybe if I never worked with him I wouldn't have this perspective. [But] he was very particular about how he wanted his vocals, the reverb he used ... He was that hands-on"
Akon, who sings on the first proper single from the new Michael Jackson album, disagrees with Will.i.am, saying that 'Michael' is definitely not disrespectful in any way whatsoever, so there: "I don't see anything disrespectful about it ... these albums would have come out if [Jackson] was alive or dead so I think this helps to keep his legacy alive"
Randy Jackson, meanwhile, thinks soundalikes have been used to complete his brother's posthumously released songs: "Some of the songs are him, and some aren't. I would bet my life on that. I know this may seem harsh, but this is the truth, as I know it... But what's worse than harsh is that my brother isn't here, and all these people are more concerned about making money off his death"
Natasha Bedingfield originally intended to write songs for other people, but her songs turned out to be so amazingly brilliant that no one would take them off her: "That was my aim. I was just going to write for other people. Every person I worked with was like: 'Oh, you should keep that for yourself - you should actually be an artist'. So at that point I did it"
Deftones frontman Chino Moreno explains why he is better than vocalists in emo bands: "A lot of them have two singers; one guy who's the guy who's screaming his head off, then they've got the guy who sings the pretty stuff. And I was pointing out to my son that, you know, it's cool that you like all these bands and stuff but, you know, your dad can do both of these jobs in one!"
Alex James on the problem with the internet: "I was talking to the drummer from a new band the other day. He says it's no fun being a rock star any more [because] if you sleep with a groupie then they're on the fan sites the next day discussing your performance. The world has become more sober and serious. It was bound to happen eventually but the party was great while it lasted"
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  Jay-Z & The Prodigy. I imagine you're all familiar with both The Prodigy and Jay-Z. If not, all you need to know is that they're both most famous for writing songs with the word 'bitch' in. Can you imagine what would happen if they both appeared on one track at the same time, and that track contained the word 'bitch'? Wonder no more, friends and misogynists! Your time has come - soundcloud.com/theprodigy/99-problems-the-prodigy-remix-dirty
  Asobi Seksu. New York dream-pop duo Asobi Seksu have announced that they will release their fourth studio album, 'Flourescence', on 17 Feb - exactly two years (give or take a few days) after 2009's 'Hush'. As with that album, the arrival of the new long player is being announced with a track that sees that band playing at their very loudest. 'Trials' comes in a swirl of overlapping guitars - iheartvinyl.polyvinylrecords.com/em/fluorescence/
  Hiatus. Cyrus Shahrad, aka Hiatus, released his first album, 'Ghost Notes', last month. The album draws heavily on samples of Persian music that was outlawed after the 1979 Iranian Revolution, an upheaval which also led to Shahad's family fleeing the country when he was a year old. The video for the opening track from the album, 'Save Yourself', went online last week, made up of archive footage of Iran - youtu.be/W-KfoV49FBk
  Happy Holy Roar Vol. 4. Hardcore label Holy Roar has announced its fourth 'Happy Holy Roar' cassette tape compilation for Christmas. As ever, it will feature exclusive contributions from a variety of underground acts, including live recordings, covers and a complete new EP from one Holy Roar-signed band. The full tracklisting will be announced on 13 Dec, though orders will close the day before - holyroarrecords.com/album.php?id=685&shop=1
  Martin Grech. Launching himself back into the world Martin Grech returns with a new compilation of demos and talk of a fourth studio album. The demo compilation, entitled 'Meta' and available to buy as MP3s from Grech's Facebook page. Meanwhile, he's just putting the finishing touches on his fourth album, 'The Watcher', which is expected to be released next year - www.facebook.com/pages/Martin-Grech-official/358290270815
  Noughts And Exes. With members from all over the world, pop sextet Noughts And Exes are whipping up a storm in their current home, Hong Kong, with their second album, which has been proclaimed to be one of the best albums released in Asia this year by critics. This week they released the video for the title track of the album, 'The Start Of Us'. It's a simple but brilliant visual idea, and the song it great too - youtu.be/XJgM2r6PPW8
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#44: Billy Corgan v Pavement
It's all a bit too like the 80s at the moment; the Conservative government is cutting everything, there's a royal wedding coming up and there's loads of synth music lying about the place. Why not take a break from that with a little bit of 90s alt rock in-fighting?

Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan yesterday took to Twitter to lambast US indie heroes Pavement, after he learned that he would be appearing together at a festival in Brazil. Corgan's gripe is seemingly that Pavement are screwing their loyal followers over by reforming and then insisting on only playing the songs that the fans want to hear.
Said Corgan: "Just found out SP is playing with Pavement in Brazil. It's gonna be one of those New Orleans type funerals. I say that because they represent the death of the alternative dream, and we follow with the affirmation of life part. Funny how those who pointed the big finger of 'sell out' are the biggest offenders now... yawn. They have no love. By the way, we'll be the band up there playing NEW songs because we have the love".

Billy Corgan has, of course, been wowing fans with his new material on recent tours. A quick trawl of gig reviews from recent shows throws up the phrases like "boring", "mind-numbing" and "impossibly self-indulgent", while at one gig in Australia recently, Corgan berated the crowd for cheering when he played the intro to one of the band's most popular songs, 'Today'.

''It's not very nice to cheer more for this song", he told them. Billy knows what the audience wants, even if they don't.
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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Eddy Temple-Morris
Paul Vig
Club Tipper
James Blunt
Head Of Stopping
World War III

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