Wednesday, June 18, 2003

WHAT THE POP PAPERS SAY: Cobbled together in coffee-breaks edition from Newcastle:
MediaGuardian predicts the sweeping in of Clear Channel to grip its fingers around the UK radio industry. While we suspect that this is in its plans, we're a little surprised at the evidence the paper offers - that CC has just opened a big headquarters in London. Yes, this may be the bridgehead for a sweep throughout the UK taking over Viking and Fox FM, you've also got remember that CC are already one of the market leaders in European outdoor advertising (bus shelters and such) and own venues and have a thriving promotion business. So it's not impossible they could fill the executive washrooms without the need to snap up Classic FM as well.
Besides, where would be the harm if they did? The man from Clear Channel stresses that the company isn't the sort to take over a radio station and alter it beyond recognition - "we're aware of the needs of the local market." That'll be why all those North Mexican listeners keep getting travel news for San Diego, then.

Also in the Guardian: Moby is interviewed. We could say things, but we're feeling too weak right now. Eminem sacrificing a doll version of him isn't enough. We need show trials, witch burnings, all of that. Talking of Eminem…

Eminem! Dre! 50 Cent! All grimming out of the cover, although the presence of the ludicrous 50 pence is akin to having George W on Mount Rushmore. And Eminem is wearing a dopey hat that makes him look like he's got the wig Dave Grohl wore for his cross-dressy bit in the Learn To Fly video. Only without even that much gorm.

Page three has been given over to a sort of contents page - "inside your packed NME" promises the top, hoping nobody will notice that it's so packed they've had to fill a page with trailers for stuff a few pages on.

News: Pete Doherty missed a Libertines gig - capital case made

the new Muse album will be "harder" than expected (translation: our label wants us to go after the Scuzz/Kerrang market with a vengeance)

Kaish from the So Solids claimed that the wrongful arrest wrecked his career - because without it, he would have had a great solo future ahead of him, like, erm, those other boys from So Solid, like, um…

Chris Martin has written a song about Gwyneth Paltrow - it goes "like Moses has power over the sea, so you've got power over me" - so she parts you, does she, Chris?

Apparently 'I fucked Jack White' tshirts are the must-have item this summer. Everyone's wearing them. Except Meg, who's presumably got one with the word "really" on it too. And "Our mother doesn't know" as well, perhaps.

Justin Frischmann's vocals on Pleasure's Don't Look The Other Way is being released on July 7th. We suggest you start queuing now. Unless, of course, you buy your records over the internet, in which case you might want to sit logged-on for all time until you can buy it.

Stellastar have signed a major deal with RCA. Only not in Britain, they'll still be cool and on 20/20 there. We'd assumed the level of useless flyposters they'd been given showed the shadowy influence of a major label anyway, to be honest.

Ross from Futurehead isn't scared of you, and isn't scared of ghosts - told he was playing Newcastle's notoriously spooky Opera House, he snapped "Fuck the undead - we are punk rock." Hmmm. But seeing as most remaining punks are zombies now, and you're playing a bloody opera house, we're not entirely sure who's spooking who.

It looks like the lazy filling of two pages with a whole bunch of numbers in BIG TYPE is to be a regular feature - anyway, this week's is quite interesting, as it has the first day sales figures for the New Radiohead Album, Hail To The Thief - 44,000 copies in the UK alone. Now, record industry, will you believe us that downloading doesn't actually harm sales?

Neither does stretching, apparently - some woman's paid out GBP1,610 for Ronan Keating's old knickers, which are garments that must have been under something of a strain, don't you think?

Stuart Braithwaite of the Mogwai chooses CD tracks - The Cure, Sonic Youth and - hurrah! - Spaceman3's Revolution.

If your mum and dad were trapped in marriage for twenty years not because they loved each other, but because they were in need of the comfort, would you write a song about it? Cause that's what Luke Steele from the the Sleepy Jackson did, with 'Acid in my heart'

Travel broadens the mind. Unless the first stage is on the Mersey Ferry, of course: James Skelly of the Coral gets a trip to Japan, and comes back complaining about the food - "all day, all we could eat was fish biscuits" he bemoans - apparently unaware that some of the cheaper Digestives and Custard Creams in Liverpool shops are made with "marine oil" - i.e. squished fish. Fact.

The Dre/Eminem/Fifty spread shrinks like a salted slug when you look at it - the Eminem piece originally appeared in the New York Times Magazine (not written by Jason Blair), Dr Dre isn't actually "playing at the weekend" so you're left with 50 per cent (yes, we're killing ourselves, too) to carry the feature. He's a great example, you know: "My son is six, and when he watches someone getting shot [on TV] now he says 'switch it off - it aint real, you've been shot nine times and you're still alive" - perhaps the first ever case of real-life violence desensitising kids to violence on TV?

Radio 4 (the band0 are angry - why? Because "Aids is not on TV, it's not in the news. This country has a short attention span." While possibly true, Google News finds about 2000 references to Aids + America at the moment. While no longer the number one disease of the month, surely HIV is only an Elton John interview away from the headlines?

Electric 6 - fire - "a record to be used and abused", 6
Gossip - movement - "drama, passion and fun", 8
Liam Lynch - fake songs - "self-indulgent piffle", 3

Sotw - Yeah yeah yeahs - Pin - "trashy, sexy, cool"
Siobahn Donaghy - Overrated - "sugababes gone rock"

Yeah yeah yeahs - Camden barfly - "a head fucking rock band"

And finally, in response to a complaint that a page given over to Jack White in his swimming costume was a bit lightweight, the nme bristles and says "ah, but is' fun." Maybe, but the problem wasn't that it was published at all, but that it was given a whole page. And lead the news section at that. Five years ago, it would have been a small pic on the Public NME page. And therein lies the problem, and therein.

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