Saatchi & Saatchi Pt 2: “Dr. Martens Sort of Exploits Images of Iconic Rockers, Estates Fight Back, People Get Fired.” - Kurt Cobain

Last week, the ad agency Saatchi & Saatchi were doing the work that has made them famous and realized that, apparently, people had completely forgotten what subculture is commonly associated with: Dr. Martens boots. Some guy named Andrew Petch did some serious outside-the-box thinking and had the boys down in design whip up a few ads featuring Kurt Cobain, Joey Ramone, Joe Strummer, and Sid Vicious hanging out in heaven, still wearing the boots that two of the four were seen wearing occasionally.

Petch, whose childhood next-door neighbor owned Nevermind, he thinks, spouted: "We wanted to communicate that Dr Martens boots are 'made to last' and we discovered that these idolized musicians wore them. Showing them still wearing their Docs in heaven dramatized the boots' durability perfectly. And, as images, they feel very iconic."

The ensuing circus in summary:

Blogs: (Distribute things, complain about them.)

Courtney Love: This ad campaign is exploiting my former husband’s likeness! Crap! Plus he never even wore those things.

Joe B.: I should get around to writing that Doc Martens story soon.

Saatchi & Saatchi (Pushes glasses up onto nose, points to a book): But the ad campaign was only licensed to run in a U.K. magazine, where you don’t have to get people’s permission to profit from their dead relatives.

Dr. Marten: The only possible PR move at this point is to fire you guys.

Saatchi & Saatchi: Dude

Joey Ramone’s Brother: I don’t really approve these ads either. Plus I’m pretty sure Joey never even wore those things. Courtney Love was right. Weird.

Saatchi & Saatchi: But dud-- Aw. The ads were “edgy,” not “offensive,” by the way. (Remains extremely profitable)

Dr. Martens, Courtney Love, The Estates of Johnny Rotten, Joe Strummer, and Joey Ramone: (Remain extremely profitable).

Mr P: There, two Saatchi & Saatchi stories. Okay, guys, time to buy ad space.

Joe B.: (Distributes things, complains about them.)

Bump up the Terror Alert, New Mexican Disaster Squad is Hitting the Homeland

In a brash move, the Department of Homeland Security has decided to go ahead with their plans on digitally releasing a five-song EP, titled Peace with Nothing. Instead of using a kewl play on their own name, for instance H-Land Scurdzy, they have chosen to work under the moniker or New Mexican Disaster Squad. The outfit is a standard four piece (two guitars, bass, and drums) with very North American names. Due to security reasons, they have never played a public show and, in the vein of Steely Dan, rely on CD sales to keep their career afloat.

The EP will be available though the internet only, starting June 5. As of today, however, you can go on over to Jade Tree and stream it for free. Peace with Nothing will be available through iTunes, eMusic, Yahoo! Music, and loads of other digital music services.

Though contact has with the band has been limited ever since the national threat level has been raised from mauve to red, NMDS was nice enough to let me speak with the head of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff.

Petya: Mike, if I may, what’s the story on this new EP your boys are putting out?

Mike: Cast through shades of indignant but energetic punk, Peace With Nothing serves as a culmination of the band's allegiance to a simpler time in hardcore, while still maintaining a refreshed sense of insanity, urgency, and the band's crucial heritage as a vehicle for change in punk.

Petya: Not to call you out or anything, but didn’t you just lift that straight from the Jade Tree website?

Mike: You wanna go to Guantanamo, bitch? No, but all jokes aside, the record has a lot of political themes. The boys work a lot with irony, making fun of the President and whatnot. But you know, it’s all ironic because G-Dub is doing one helluva job right now.

Petya: He is?

Mike: What the fuck? Are you some tree-humping pinko? Watch the news, kid. He has completely revitalized what was once a barren wasteland in Iraq.

Petya: Really? Because that’s not what most news sources are saying.

Mike: Anyway, back to the music.

Petya: Yes, let’s.

Mike: The CD is genius because it will work under the guise that they hate the government, but all the complaints they mention are actually positive things the government has done. So by the end of the CD, the kids will be like, “NMDS is full of shit. America rocks!”

Pete: You guys are quite the moralists.

Mike: Thank you.

EMI Defies Fate as Predicted on Godspeed You! Black Emperor’s Yanqui U.X.O., Bought Out By Terra Firma for $4.7 Billion; Sorry Warner Music Group

In my future fantasy world, I'm the professor of an advanced ethnomusicology course. After spending a considerable amount of the semester wading though The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, and Frank Zappa, we finally get to the part in the course where I'm something of an expert: post-rock — a genre typified by sometimes large music ensembles and often vocal-less, extended-length pieces, with instrumentation typified more so by European classical than by American rock 'n' roll.

I spend more time explaining how Tortoise evoke a sense of place — in this case, Chicago — with their mix of jazz and vocal-less, well, umm, post-rock. Either way, an entire class period is consumed with the playing of, first, "Djed" from Tortoise's Millions Now Living Will Never Die and second, "Rockets Fall on Rocket Falls," from Godspeed You! Black Emperor's Yanqui U.X.O. With the latter, I discuss how GY!BE evoke strong anti-government and protest sentiments with their crescendo-laden jams and field-recorded samples, not to mention their album artwork.

And so, just prior to playing the entire 20 minutes-plus "Rockets Fall on Rocket Falls," I show the class the back cover album art from Yanqui U.X.O, showcasing the major record labels' ties — through monetary contributions — to the military industrial complex (click the image above to see more, or buy the album).

In 2002, things were a bit different, the state of the music industry slightly less bleak. The majors consisted of Vivendi-Universal, Sony, BMG (currently one entity known as Sony BMG), AOL-Time Warner (now, just Warner Music Group), and EMI.

GY!BE, subversive as they were/are, chose to add EMI to the long list of AOL-Time Warner labels. They have since apologized for their oversight, stating that at the time they printed the album, Warner was in the process of acquiring EMI. And to Godspeed's credit, Warner was indeed in the process of acquiring EMI. Some might have predicted a Sony and BMG merger, but what we have all really been waiting for half a decade is for this damn EMI and Warner Music Group merger. Well, I don't think that's going to happen.

Announced Monday, private equity group Terra Firma purchased EMI for $4.7 billion. Apparently this equity group did something Warner Music Group didn't do, which is: "Terra Firma's offer is the most attractive proposal received and delivers cash now, without regulatory uncertainty and with the minimum of operational risk to the company," says EMI Chairman John Gildersleeve.

Terra Firma's CEO said the following of the purchase: " Terra Firma's objective is to build on EMI's current position as one of the world's leading music companies and accelerate the development of its digital and online strategy to fully exploit this long-term growth opportunity."

Did you catch the joke about "long-term growth opportunity?" Well, anyway, none of that trust-busting bullshit; the deal is legit, just gotta show up with the cash. Meanwhile, The Financial Times reports that Warner is already in talks with Terra Firma and other private equity groups about acquiring the recorded music division of EMI once the sale is complete (and rumor has it they are still considering raising their bid), and another equity firm, One Equity Partners, is also expected to make a bid. EMI's gotta be blushing by now.

EMI Defies Fate as Predicted on Godspeed You! Black Emperor’s Yanqui U.X.O., Bought Out By Terra Firma for $4.7 Billion; Sorry Warner Music Group

In my future fantasy world, I'm the professor of an advanced ethnomusicology course. After spending a considerable amount of the semester wading though The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, and Frank Zappa, we finally get to the part in the course where I'm something of an expert: post-rock — a genre typified by sometimes large music ensembles and often vocal-less, extended-length pieces, with instrumentation typified more so by European classical than by American rock 'n' roll.

I spend more time explaining how Tortoise evoke a sense of place — in this case, Chicago — with their mix of jazz and vocal-less, well, umm, post-rock. Either way, an entire class period is consumed with the playing of, first, "Djed" from Tortoise's Millions Now Living Will Never Die and second, "Rockets Fall on Rocket Falls," from Godspeed You! Black Emperor's Yanqui U.X.O. With the latter, I discuss how GY!BE evoke strong anti-government and protest sentiments with their crescendo-laden jams and field-recorded samples, not to mention their album artwork.

And so, just prior to playing the entire 20 minutes-plus "Rockets Fall on Rocket Falls," I show the class the back cover album art from Yanqui U.X.O, showcasing the major record labels' ties — through monetary contributions — to the military industrial complex (click the image above to see more, or buy the album).

In 2002, things were a bit different, the state of the music industry slightly less bleak. The majors consisted of Vivendi-Universal, Sony, BMG (currently one entity known as Sony BMG), AOL-Time Warner (now, just Warner Music Group), and EMI.

GY!BE, subversive as they were/are, chose to add EMI to the long list of AOL-Time Warner labels. They have since apologized for their oversight, stating that at the time they printed the album, Warner was in the process of acquiring EMI. And to Godspeed's credit, Warner was indeed in the process of acquiring EMI. Some might have predicted a Sony and BMG merger, but what we have all really been waiting for half a decade is for this damn EMI and Warner Music Group merger. Well, I don't think that's going to happen.

Announced Monday, private equity group Terra Firma purchased EMI for $4.7 billion. Apparently this equity group did something Warner Music Group didn't do, which is: "Terra Firma's offer is the most attractive proposal received and delivers cash now, without regulatory uncertainty and with the minimum of operational risk to the company," says EMI Chairman John Gildersleeve.

Terra Firma's CEO said the following of the purchase: " Terra Firma's objective is to build on EMI's current position as one of the world's leading music companies and accelerate the development of its digital and online strategy to fully exploit this long-term growth opportunity."

Did you catch the joke about "long-term growth opportunity?" Well, anyway, none of that trust-busting bullshit; the deal is legit, just gotta show up with the cash. Meanwhile, The Financial Times reports that Warner is already in talks with Terra Firma and other private equity groups about acquiring the recorded music division of EMI once the sale is complete (and rumor has it they are still considering raising their bid), and another equity firm, One Equity Partners, is also expected to make a bid. EMI's gotta be blushing by now.

At TMT, we pride ourselves on our make-'em-or-break-'em powers. On a daily (hell, hourly) basis, the fate of so many artists rests in the clammy palms of our taste-making hands that sometimes we're overwhelmed. We've all learned that $500-million lesson about the relationship between power, responsibility and all that dribble, but the bottom line is that it's difficult. Sometimes we're forced to just roll the dice on an artist, and it ends up paying off for us both. I mean, come on, do you really think we've ever heard a whole Björk record? But we gave her the go ahead and sister just caught on. We come out looking like we've got the foresight, and now she's got the big video budgets. Like I said, it's win-win. But sometimes, you hear something and you just know.

David Bowie is that kind of performer. This guy is a phenomenon waiting to happen. Just look at the guy! That hair, those suits... those nostrils. The look screams success. Plus, I hear he rolls with TV On The Radio and The Arcade Fire. Anyway, so homeboy's putting out two (2!) albums June 5 and had the balls to call one of them The Best of David Bowie 1980-1987. Irony's one thing and retro's another, but I smell Best New Music. The second CD is called Young Americans, and this guy must've enlisted Girl Talk to work some mash-up magic because he's rolling with John Lennon AND Luther Vandross. But don't think this man can't rep the 21st century, as both CDs come with DVDs. Throwback style with a fresh twist; the kids'll eat this up.

Here at Tiny Mix Tapes, you hear it first:

Young Americans: Special Edition (CD/DVD):

  

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