Saturday, March 16, 2013

Fopp free in the future?

Something good in the collapse of HMV: It looks like Fopp might be set free to live an independent life once more.

Still ill: Morrissey cancels more

While Lil Wayne might be doing better than TMZ claimed, Morrissey seems to be iller than anyone thought. His start-stop-on-again-off-again US tour has been axed altogether:

The remaining dates of the Morrissey U.S. North American tour have officially been pulled down due to medical reasons. The singer has suffered a series of medical mishaps over the past few months including a bleeding ulcer, Barrett’s esophagus and double pneumonia.

Despite his best efforts to try to continue touring, Morrissey has to take a hiatus and will not be able to continue on the rest of the tour. Morrissey thanks all of his fans for their well wishes and thoughts. Refunds for the remaining shows are available at point of purchase.
Don't worry, I've googled Barrett's esophagus for you:
Reflux may cause symptoms of heartburn. It may also damage the lining of the esophagus. The esophagus lining then changes in appearance and looks like the stomach lining (Barrett's esophagus).
In other words, Morrissey's stomach is clambering out of his belly towards his mouth. Wouldn't you take time off work if that was happening to you?

Lil Wayne lil' better than TMZ claimed

Last night, TMZ was writing Lil Wayne off, finger hovering above the button to post the prepared obituary:

Wayne's mother is currently on a plane flying to Los Angeles -- and we're told all major decisions about Wayne's health (including the decision to discontinue life support) will not be made until she arrives.
What TMZ have quietly, and shamelessly, dropped from their story is their claim that Wayne had received the last rites. Because it simply wasn't true.

You'd think TMZ, of all people, would know that you can't do something like that without people noticing - they might have taken down the fact-that-wasn't, but all the gossip sites that leach off them had already copied the story and written 'TMZ say Wayne getting last rites' into the permanent record. And a gazillion tweets also caught the error:

The reaction to TMZ's early dispatch on Lil'Wayne's final dispatch hasn't been warm, it's fair to say. The Huffington Post captured TI's response:
That shit surely got his mama hurtin,his kids hurtin,& he got true to da game patnas like me & Othas who ready to RIDE bout all da fuck shit
Which, funnily enough, is exactly the same thing Leveson said in his report in the section on the Express' coverage of The McCanns.

To be fair to TMZ, their crack team has realised that something is odd about the whole story:
Wayne is sleeping right now ... which is odd, because he just tweeted saying he's OK and thanking people for the prayers and love.
Yes, the attempt to try and pretend it hadn't killed him off is being built around an attempt to make something out of the idea that someone might be tweeting from his account.

You know what, TMZ - the really astonishing thing about Lil Wayne's official account saying he's OK isn't that it contradicts what you heard about him sleeping, but more that it contradicts the thing you published about him having the last rites.

Sure, everyone makes mistakes and - in a bid to outrun the hearses, you're going to be liable to make mistakes of this nature. But surely - as self-appointed guardians of showbiz behaviour - an admission and an apology is what's called for, not a silent deletion and a hope nobody noticed?

Bonus bogus: TMZ collect a bunch of reactions to Wayne's hospitalization, not one of which mentions last rites, nor the site's part in the exaggeration of his death.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Gordon in the morning: Gordon in the Mail

There's an interesting chance to see not one, but two, of our successful tabloids at work this morning, as Adele is linked to a sponsorship deal.

Gordon breaks the story - and I'm using "breaks" generously here, as it seems to be little more than a collection of things that, theoretically, could happen:

MOST bets on the only brand with a chance of signing up ADELE would have been on Diamond White cider.

But that could all change thanks to a £10million pay cheque.
If they've actually negotiated a price, then the deal must be done, right?
Cosmetics giants including Estée Lauder, L’Oréal and Dior are fighting it out to make the singer the face of their skincare ranges.
Or it could be Cover Girl. Or Number Seven. Or Superdrug.

The vagueness of the story is underpinned, solely, by an unnamed source:
A source said: “Adele is in big demand. She would only accept if the campaigns were to her taste and incorporate her music.

“The last thing she wants is a cheesy ad with a naff catchphrase.

“They would have to be in keeping with her personality.

“It’s going to take a lot of persuasion to get her to agree but, right now, it looks as if she’s close to signing a deal.”
The last sentence there swings violently between suggesting that coming to a deal would take a lot of work, implying it's a distance off, and then saying it's nearly a done deal. Like it was being made up on the spot.

And, given that L'Oreal solely make cheesy ads with naff catchphrases, either the "source"'s claim of the sort of ad she might do is wrong, or Gordon's list of adverts being considered is wrong. Or both of them are wrong.

Gordon reminds readers that Adele has, in the past, been fairly firm about not wanting to do such a deal:
Adele has previously slated fellow stars for taking up similar beauty deals — and said she was concerned endorsements could “taint” her image.
He is generous, though, at this change of heart:
You can’t blame Adele for considering the big money offers. Despite banking £25million from the incredible successes of her albums 19 and 21, an extra £10million in the coffers would be hard to turn down.
So, a fairly typical Sun filler story - vague enough that if nothing happens people will forget it, but if Adele ever does turn up in an advert a 'you read it here first' piece can be built on the back of it - "a source said 'Adele had considered L'Oreal, but chose instead to get naked for PETA...'"

But nobody with half a mind would read this and come away thinking that Adele is already mouthing "get the London look" into a mirror, and planning where to put the money.

Luckily, Lucy Buckland suffers from no such restriction, copying the story across to the Daily Mail website.

Except by the time it arrives in the Mail - with a cheerful admission that the only source is what Lucy read in The Sun - the story has become more of an attack, shorn totally of Smart's 'good luck to her, who'd turn down that sort of offer':
Adele 'tempted to sign $10 million cosmetic sponsorship deal and move to LA' - despite slating stars who 'sell-out'
Oh, yes, there's an addition to the story, which is that Adele is moving to LA. Apparently this is somehow bad, too - though, to be fair, the Mail has always been consistent in its hatred of the idea of migration:
According to sources renting a house in LA was relaxing and after making friends with Robbie Williams' wife, Ayda Field she is becoming more attune to shipping out of Britain for good.

Word together threw, half-assed punctuation attempting not work.
'Adele and her man Simon are looking at a pad in one of the exclusive gated communities of Beverly Hills,' a source told The Daily Mirror, 'because Robbie and Ayda have told Adele that she would be able to have enough land not to feel too trapped, and she could have the privacy she so desperately needs to enjoy life.'
Oh, yes, that bit the Mail lifted from the Mirror, so at least it's a story with two sources.

Naturally, the Mail is unhappy at the idea of a British institution becoming so enamoured of American audiences that she might consider putting their needs first.

Although, let's just look at that headline again:
Adele 'tempted to sign $10 million cosmetic sponsorship deal and move to LA' - despite slating stars who 'sell-out'
Oddly, the Sun's ten million quid has turned into ten million greenbacks - and elsewhere her earnings are rendered in American money. Almost as if that British institution has become so enamoured of American audiences that it's putting their needs first.

Still, the Mail does at least try to add some journalism to the mix:
Adele's spokesman refused to comment after being contacted by MailOnline.
Being contacted about which story? Both? What did MailOnline actually ask? When did the Mail contact them - after these stories appeared late in the day on rival paper's websites, and was the refusal to comment a 'we have no comment', or 'I'm not in a position to comment on this'?

So, from a vague piece in The Sun, the Mail has decided that Adele is on the verge of selling out. I often wonder who believes what they read in Bizarre. I think we've now got our answer.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Gordon in the morning: Blue Peter bad

Two of Gordon's team, Rachel Dale and Laura Armstrong, rush to the defence of Yvette Fielding, accused by Woman magazine of calling Harry Styles a text pest:

But yesterday Yvette, whose son Will was childhood pals with the singer, issued a statement saying: “This story is a load of b******s, he never did it and I never said it.”

Robin Twist, partner of Harry’s mum Anne, said an “upset” Yvette had phoned to clear the air.

Speaking from their Cheshire pad, he added of the article in Woman magazine: “It is total rubbish. Yvette is very upset about it all — she called Anne this morning to explain what had happened.”
The irony of The Sun running a story about someone else's made-up bollocks I'm sure isn't lost on any of us.

The real problem for Yvette Fielding was not the story, but the fallout. You know what One Direction fans are like, and by the time the story had percolated down through to the lower school playground, it was out of control:
Ex-Blue Peter presenter Yvette spent yesterday in hiding, after furious 1D fans bombarded her with abuse on Twitter, blasting her as “bitter and vile”, a “psycho” and a “tramp”.
Because when your hero is accused of sending inappropriate texts to a person, the right thing to do would be to send inappropriate Tweets to that person. That can only make things better.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Riot Grrl, 1996

Enormous thanks to @coldbrain for alerting me to Dirty Girls, a film shot in 1996 at an LA High School, capturing the clash between Riot Grrls and the rest of the schoolyard. It's fairly safe to say there isn't much of a meeting of minds between the two groups, but despite the odd outbreak of unintentional self-awareness ("my housekeeper gave me this") it's impossible not to root for the Dirty Girls. And give quiet thanks you never had to go to an LA High School.

"I'm not a person to judge what's right and wrong in life, but this is, like, dark and nightmarey."

Gordon in the morning: Lana in L4

Popular fictional character Lana Del Ray has been to Anfield to watch Liverpool play (no word on if she popped in to the community bakery, but if she didn't, she missed her chance.)

This, though, has generated the worst headline The Sun has done in years:

Stevie G wants Lana-field Del Rap

Monday, March 11, 2013

Dermot O'Leary: Battered, but still chipper

Dermot O'Leary isn't just a Radio 2 dj and ringleader at the declining X Factor circus. Oh, no. He's a fish magnate, too.

Slightly less of a fish magnate. He's had to close his fish restaurant in Poole, but he's stressing that a sister shop in Brighton is thriving:

He [said] “Sadly we decided that Fishy Fishy Poole should cease trading owing to the current financial climate.

“Fishy Fishy Brighton continues to trade as normal.”
I'm not a marketing expert, but I suspect part of your problem might have been in calling the places Fishy Fishy. It's the sort of twee name that would actual repel people as they walk down the street. It would make Captain Birdseye decide he'd rather have a kebab.

Gordon in the morning: The wedding planner

Oh no, Gordon has been up all night fretting over a potential clash of wedding dates:

Brad got a wedding licence at the end of last month — which stated they must marry in 90 days.

The deadline could see the big day for the pair clash with the nuptials of Brad’s ex JENNIFER ANISTON — which would spark a bitter bun-fight over celeb guests.
oh no that would be terrible i can barely stand it oh whatever shall we all do

Hang on a moment, though: Aniston hasn't announced a wedding date; not even a "source close to the couple" has leaked one. I don't think the National Enquirer has even bothered to make up a date yet. So, presumably, Aniston could just choose a date that doesn't clash.

The element of non-existent jeopardy gets even smaller the more you read the story:
A source said: “Brad and Angelina left themselves short of time to sort out their wedding because of the licence deadline. A few months is nothing when you’re planning a wedding — especially one as major as theirs."
This assumes that they didn't start doing any planning prior to applying for the licence. Most people would work out most of the detail before heading off for the vital piece of paper, because - I don't know if you spotted this, Gordon - they're only valid for ninety days. (That's a quarter of a year, by the way .)

And given that Brad and Angelina aren't exactly on their last few quid, I suspect if they don't get married in the window currently afforded them by the licence they won't consider it too onerous to, you know, pay for another one. It's not like if you don't use the licence that's it.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Azealia Banks believes the Stone Roses are out to get her

See, this is what happens when you give in to the temptation of cash and reunite: you go from being mystical and magical and wind up as a punchline in somebody else's comedy spat. The Stone Roses are being accused by Azealia Banks of sabotaging her set at some random music festival in Australia. Rolling Stone reports:

"Big apologies on behalf of the stone roses to my fans at the festival today," Banks tweeted in the opening shot of her rant. "My ex tour manager made a pact with the stone roses saying they'd sabotage my set because I fired him.. And they decided to check their equipment behind me during my set. Fuck those old saggy white n***as stone roses. I wish them nothing but excrement and death."
I'm not entirely clear what would have been in this deal for the Roses, to be honest. They've never noticaebly been fond of music industry managers, so it seems to be an extraordinary favour to do for somebody.

Aha! But Banks tries to frame the claims as being part of some sort of misogynistic-racist plot:
"Wow! I must really fucking be a superstar... You've got an established band trying to sabotage my lil rap bitch shine," she wrote. "Wow a bunch of old white men trying to bully a young black girl.... What the fuck else is new in this world ???"
So, she wishes "nothing but excrement and death" on the Roses. Which, funnily enough, is pretty much what the reviews for The Second Coming described it as.

Chris Brown: He's a catch

This has been pretty well reported elsewhere, but let's just read into the record Chris Brown's thoughts on how to talk to women:

“Every guy in this building has said one thing to their female … If you’re not an insecure nigga, and you let her have fun with her friends, I applaud you. But you gotta say that one thing to her, and I made this shitt up. [sings] Don’t make me have to tell you again, that that’s my pussy baby! It is mine, baby, babe, mine. So you better not give it away!”

”So every person in this motherfucking building, if you got a bad bitch you better say that to her. Cause she might fuck another nigga.”
I don't think this really needs any further comment, does it?

This week just gone

The most-read stories this week:

1. Pandora announces financials, dresses up losses all pretty
2. Video: Happy 30th Birthday, Blue Monday
3. Eurovision: Pinning hopes on Bonnie Tyler
4. Morrissey unimpressed by modern music
5. Men's rights people still struggling with Short Dick Man
6. Noel Gallagher on David Bowie
7. Eurovision: Tony Iommi for Armenia
8. Robbie Williams: shunned for not being Mod enough
9. How lovely are Bieber fans?
10. Ne-Yo: sex tips for asshats

These were the interesting releases this week:

Autchre - Exai

Download EPs 1991 - 2002

Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell - Old Yellow Moon

Download Old Yellow Moon

Kate Nash - Girl Talk

Download Girl Talk

Robyn Hitchcock - Love From London

Download Love From London

Roddy Woomble - Listen To Keep

Download Listen To Keep

Bastille - Bad Blood

Download Bad Blood