Universal Music Group Proves To Us Once More That It Ain’t Givin’ Up On Its War Against The Internet By Barring UMG Artists on MySpace From Posting Full-length Versions Of Their Songs
Universal Music Group is hellbent on sedating the inevitable. Time and time again, it never ceases to deliver when it comes to conservatism/ignorance. Whether it's intolerance of file-sharing or the inability to give up on DRM, the group is always stirring up trouble that only hurts and embarrasses itself.
One of the newest and more questionable actions from UMG is exemplified in a message sent from Universal artist, Colbie Caillat. In this message, Colbie apologizes to her fans by writing:
Due to circumstances beyond my control I have to swap the songs out on my [MySpace] page for 90 second versions instead of full length versions. In fact some of the songs have already been swapped as I write this.
That's right, Colbie Calliat and every other Universal artist are now prohibited from posting full-length versions of "their" songs on any third-party site that is not directly affiliated and/or in a contract with UMG. According to the The Listening Post, this policy has been in motion for several months now.
Silly Universal. Will you ever learn?
Allow me to impart my live experiences with Ryan Adams as such:
Date: May 16th, 2005
Location: Poughkeepsie, NY
Tour: Cold Roses
Backing Band: The Cardinals
Hospitality Rider: Beer, whiskey, beer, and beer. And whiskey.
Reaction to such heckling examples as "BRYAN ADAMS!!!" and a tragically timed "WOOOOO!" during the beginning of "Wonderwall" (Oasis cover): Tantrums, abrupt song-switch, general malaise, etc.
Date: May 16th, 2007
Location: Kingston, NY
Tour: Easy Tiger
Backing Band: The Cardinals
Hospitality Rider: Rehab, orange juice.
Reaction to such heckling examples as "NEW YORK NEW YOOOORK!!!" from an audience member on the wrong album tour: "..."
So I've got my money on a balls-out freakout during any one of these dates, but it's like Russian roulette with this dude. He's like Valium and Adderall united as one.
Oh yeah, and we've gotta have a reason to tour (unless you're Interpol): There's a new EP called Follow the Lights, and rumor has it you can hear new tracks from it on the new ABC primetime drama October Road.
All dates are fair game; I accept bar tabs and jukebox quarters as collateral:
Gnarls Barkley To Release St. Elsewhere Follow-Up In 2008; Charles Barkley To Release Rockin’ The Paint With Charles Barkley In 2019
As 2006 drew to a close for the uncomfortably fizzled-out billions of the world, Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo were spending New Year's Eve donning microphones in place of party hats and spilling champagne all over expensive recording equipment. The ideas drunkenly formed that night were forgotten, remembered, and then skillfully chiseled into the finished product you see before you. Well, not before you. Over to the side of you. The side of you that resides in Spring of 2008.
Yes, the costume-loving, multi-genre-stroking duo that makes up Gnarls Barkley is finally sorting out what tunes they want for the follow-up to last year's St. Elsewhere and plans to bring those tunes to you, o prospective consumer, in the coming (more leafy) months. Danger Mouse has said in interviews that the Brothers Barkley would only release another album if they were wholly pleased with the results, so we can expect either excitement and pleasure next season, or a gift-wrapped hearing aid sent to a notable DJ.
No title or exact release date yet, but to tide you over I have the lyrics to "Crazy" right here:
Gener and Deaner Add 2008 Dates to Ween’s Tour Behind The Band’s Newest manifesto of Weird, La Cucaracha
Ween are a polarizing force in music. Some people think everything Ween do is genius, others are not even mildly amused. Sometimes juvenile, often sadistic, frequently vulgar, and always inventive, Ween wouldn't be Ween if they recorded the touching "It's Gonna Be (Alright)" without tempering it with "Waving My Dick In The Wind." For those who can handle both halves, Ween is an arcane pleasure. For those who cannot, go fuck yourself.
If Ween alienate listeners on their albums -- like on their latest album, La Cucaracha -- their live performances drive the wedge even deeper. For those with an ear for the Brown Sound, Ween will be touring the Southwest as well as Australia and New Zealand in 2008.
Oh sure, UK-based new wave rockers The Futureheads may have been a lot of places and seen a lot of things as rock ‘n’ roll musicians. You might be sitting there in your college dorm room, office, or minimum security prison right now thinking that these four guys are better off than you. "If only I could start a successful band," you think. "Then I'd have it made."
And yeah, it all seems glamorous enough. After all, they've cut a few records, done a few tours, gotten some positive buzz from the likes of P4K, and garnered, if not "respect," then at least damned near indie-rock-household-name status.
But you know something? After a while, all of that rock ‘n’ roll stuff that seemed so utterly fulfilling at the get-go starts to become a little tedious. Before long, bands like The Futureheads find that they've spent time arguing in some hole-in-the-wall studio about whose tracks are going to make the next album, living in 14-passenger vans for months at a time, struggling to pen lyrics that are hip yet approachable, and arguing with your label about the next "single" that they've forgotten what's really important in life: getting drunk and laid, laid, laid by sexy, British College chicks!!
Well, my friends, The Futureheads must have officially learned this hard, hard lesson for themselves sometime recently, because the frisky foursome has officially waived goodbye to that whole "touring foreign and unfriendly cities filled with jaded hipsters and trying to sell records to uptight working stiffs while sleeping in under-sized motel rooms just to make ends meet and survive another tour without killing one another" scene with the recent announcement of a whole, honkin' slew of EXCLUSIVELY University Student Union-based shows this coming January!
That's right, kids. No more of that "your turn to sleep in the van with the baseball bat" horseshit for these lads! Nothing but free booze, bloated University-gig pay, impressionable youths who haven't seen live music in ages, and all of the sweet, sweet #@!!*licious !*$^ing !&**$ #$%& fests that they can handle!
Hats off, Futureheads, and godspeed. Oh, and feel free to send pix my way. Meanwhile, if you guys need anything, we average Joes will just be off killing ourselves...
Best tour EVER:
01.16.08 - Brunel, UK - Union of Brunel Students
01.17.08 - Hertfordshire, UK - University of Hertfordshire Students' Union
01.18.08 - Warwick, UK - Warwick Students' Union
01.19.08 - Leicestershire, UK - Loughborough Students' Union
01.21.08 - Hull, UK - Hull University Union
01.22.08 - Liverpool, UK - Liverpool Guild Of Students Stanley Theatre
01.23.08 - Preston, UK - Preston 53 Degrees
01.24.08 - Strathclyde, UK - Strathclyde Students' Union
01.26.08 - Sheffield, UK - University Of Sheffield Union Of Students
01.27.08 - Leeds, UK - Leeds University Union
01.28.08 - Norwich, UK - The Waterfront
01.29.08 - Bournemouth, UK - Bournemouth The Old Fire Station
Radiohead Finally Confirm European Tour Dates, Hell Freezes Over, Tickets on Sale NOW, Hell Warms Up Slightly Due to Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Radiohead certainly know how to tempt their fans, don't they? Instead of just announcing their tourdates and the corresponding list of venues all at once, the British boys have been slowly revealing information about their upcoming European tour over the past few weeks. Nothing like waving a T-Bone steak in a dog's face and making him jump for it, am I right?
So, keeping with the Radiohead way of doing things, I'm going to write the rest of this news story using weird symbols and punctuation and in a long drawn out format where I only divulge random bits of information.
In_other RH news/ discbox was_released//tues..._ _
“jigsaw falling_into_place” vid on_youtube now/originally_feat. in/webcast nov.9th.
tickts on sale now at radiohead.com/tourdates. general sale Frrriday at 9 AM GMT.
7-album release comes with bonus live_prfrmnc @ the Les Eurockéennes De Belfort festival (France_July 2003). digital. Cover of Neil Young's "After The Gold Rush."
Â£ tour_date e e _s:
Expect Fewer Gifts Under the Christmas Tree If Your Santa Works for Song BMG – Layoffs To Come Before Year’s End; Torrent Users Ruin Holiday Season
Warner Music Group, EMI, Universal Music Group, and Song BMG together make up the "big four" of major labels, collectively controlling 80% of the United States' music market and 70% of the world music market. So, when Sony BMG reported that their revenues were down from $948 million to only $851 million in their second quarter filings, the proverbial fire was lit under many asses. And so, even with impressive late-year showings from Britney Spears' Blackout (over 1,000,000 copies sold worldwide) and Alicia Keys' As I Am (over 1,400,000!), it's too little, too late in the eyes of Big Poppa Bertelsmann.
Although Warner Group and Universal both do the Hanukkah thing and EMI rolls with Kwanzaa, rumor has it that stockings will be considerably lighter when December 25 rolls around for Sony BMG employees this year. Silicon Alley Insider is reporting that between 40 and 70 mid-level executives will be laid off before the end of the year, thanks to you pesky downloaders as they'd like you to believe. Had you only picked up a few copies of Chris Brown's Exclusive, the snow would fall peacefully, kisses would be exchanged under the mistletoe, and every boy and girl would have the trinkets they covet.
Instead, at Sony BMG, it's beginning to look a lot like Shitmas.
If you are not from the Balkans and have not heard Balkan Beat Box, I recommend you check them out. The duo, which consists of Ori Kaplan (formerly of Gogol Bordello) and Tamir Muskat (Firewater), incorporates traditional Balkan, Jewish, and Mediterranean sounds into modern styles like electronica and dancehall pop. Unfortunately, whenever I play their music for my friends who are actually from the Balkans, the conversation invariably goes something like this:
Nat Towsen: Balkan Beat Box is great!
Marjan Stojnev: Nat, this may be new to you, but I’ve been hearing these sounds my whole life.
Nat Towsen: Then perhaps you should try my new band, American Rock Group.
American Rock Group is a duo consisting of Jeff Tweedy (formerly of Wilco) and myself that incorporates traditional blues, country, and folk sounds into modern styles like rock ‘n’ roll. We are steadily gaining popularity in Eastern Europe, where American music has never been heard before.
Balkan Beat Box Tourdates:
Also, in case any of our American readers were curious, this is where the Balkans are:
I say, is that really you? I would never have expected to find you here at the Imperial Hotel so very late in the season! Ah, but I’m sure the Ambassador keeps very busy working on that simply delightful collection of motorcars you have! When was it I last saw you? That’s right, of course, how could I have forgotten? It was at the Countess d’Orgel’s Christmas ball in Vienna! Such an absolutely charming woman, the Countess, don’t you agree?
Well, I must say you are looking splendid. Do stop by our chateau this Friday! We’ve assembled the most exquisite collection of people; the Duke has really outdone himself this time! You know how we pride ourselves on being patrons of the arts, and we’ve acquired some simply sublime people from America — jazz musicians they’re called. They’re just wild! What’s that you say? You’re already engaged to attend a performance by Dan Boeckner of Wolf Parade’s side project, The Handsome Furs? Well, I do enjoy a handsome fur myself, but I’m afraid I don’t quite understand. An indie rock band, you say? On tour? Alright, dear, well, you enjoy yourself with your new motorcar and indie rock band, and don’t hesitate to look up the Duke and myself next time you’re in Carlsbad. Kisses!
“Gliddy glub gloopy/ Nibby nabby noopy/ La la la lo lo/ Sabba sibby sabba/ Nooby abba nabba/ Le le lo lo/ tooby ooby walla/ Nooby abba naba/ Early morning singing song.”
Needless to say, to someone accustomed to the bookish, transcendental lyrics like these lovingly displayed above, the generic, low-brow, and downright lifeless words of chief Mountain Goat John Darnielle don’t really rocketh my world with the same poetic intensity of say, Avril or Sir Jon Bon Jovi. You would think with 27 albums to his credit that he would eventually hit some sort of stride and start to produce a few bon mots of quality. But noooooooo.
Nah, I can’t keep up this charade any longer. It is a given that Darnielle has a gift of lyrical gab matched by very few (and peerless songwriting finesse to boot), so whenever word spreads that a new Mountain Goats album is coming down the pike, we get unusually giddy. Assisted by Franklin Bruno, Annie Clark, Erik Friedlander, Peter Hughes, Jon Wurster, and The Bright Mountain Choir, Heretic Pride will be released through 4AD on February 19, just in time to give your postal carrier [Editor's note: awwww yeah!!!] his or her belated Valentine’s Day gift. The album was produced by Scott Solter and John Vanderslice, features art by the godlike Vaughan Oliver, and contains 13 songs, none of which will match the nadir of expressive wizardry, Coldplay’s “Yellow” (“for you I’d bleed myself dry”... [oh no you wouldn’t, you whinging ass-bag!]).
1. Sax Rohmer #1
2. San Bernardino
3. Heretic Pride
5. New Zion
6. So Desperate
7. In the Craters on the Moon
8. Lovecraft in Brooklyn
9. Tianchi Lake
10. How to Embrace a Swamp Creature
11. Marduk T-Shirt Men’s Room Incident
12. Sept 15 1983
13. Michael Myers Resplendent
No, no, you're wrong, George Bernard Shaw... a heretic is always better live!
12.08.07 - London, England - Union Chapel
12.09.07 - Manchester, England - Moho Live
12.10.07 - Glasgow, Scotland - Oran Mor