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BLOC WEEKEND ASKS FESTIVAL-GOERS FOR INPUT INTO INVESTIGATION
As previously reported, it's not entirely clear what caused the over-crowding at the festival which, after five years being staged at holiday parks, was run at East London's new Pleasure Gardens complex this year. But shortly after midnight on the first day of the event, police recommended a shutdown to avoid putting festival-goers in danger.
There are various theories doing the rounds as to what went wrong. Some reckon that there were problems with the CrowdSurge ticketing system the festival used (either problems with the scanning of tickets, or maybe that it was easy for users to replicate other festival-goers' barcodes before the event, causing confusion once gates opened). Others have speculated that the site, certainly as it was set up, just wasn't able to accommodate the festival's 15,000 capacity, and relied on nearly half of the event's audience standing outside of performance areas, which may work at a holiday park festival, but not at a city-based event of this kind.
Either way, in its third statement since the premature shutdown of this year's festival, Bloc organisers said they would welcome input from ticket-buyers as they investigate what happened on Friday. The statement read: "We wanted to reiterate that we have launched an investigation into the events of Friday night. To that end we have opened an email address to which we would like you to submit any information you think may be relevant. We are keen to hear from you so we can build the most accurate picture and report of what happened. As ever, you guys are at the heart of what we do so please drop us a line with any comments on firstname.lastname@example.org".
Stressing again that the safety of audience members is always the number one concern, and how with that in mind organisers still believe the shut-down was the right decision in the circumstances, the statement did add an apology to those who attended the event, saying: "We would also like to make it clear that we are deeply sorry for all of the frustration and disappointment this situation has caused all of you. No one is more gutted about it than us".
Information on refunds is expected in due course.
MISSING STONE ROSES FAN FOUND DEAD
As previously reported, Brahney went missing after attending the first of the band's three homecoming shows at Heaton Park in Manchester last month. Last seen by his friends after the concert at about 11.30pm on 29 Jun, Brahney left the group he was with to return to the park after realising he had lost his mobile phone.
Tens of thousands of people joined the search to find Brahney, both on and offline, after The Stone Roses appealed for information relating to his disappearance. Following yesterday's news, the band issued a second statement expressing their condolences, saying: "We'd like to extend our sincerest condolences to Christopher's family and friends. Our thoughts are with them at this incredibly sad time. Ian, John, Mani and Reni".
A post-mortem is due to take place today.
MEGAUPLOAD CHIEF'S EXTRADITION HEARING POSTPONED INTO 2013
As previously reported, New Zealand prosecutors working on behalf of the US authorities have hit a number of setbacks in court as the Americans try to extradite Dotcom and three other former MegaUpload executives. The courts have ruled that the warrant used to search Dotcom's New Zealand home back in January, as the US authorities were in the process of shutting down the MegaUpload website, was the wrong sort, rendering the raid illegal.
A judge also ruled that New Zealand authorities should not have let US investigators take copies of data seized during that raid back to the States, and that the American authorities should make available to Dotcom's defence team all the evidence they have against the MegaUpload founder in their criminal case against him before any extradition hearing takes place.
Although none of these issues should directly affect America's case for extraditing Dotcom, they have caused delays, not least because of reports New Zealand prosecutors plan to appeal some or all of the rulings that have gone against them so far. All of which made the August date for an extradition hearing wholly unrealistic.
Dotcom reckons that all these events in court so far ultimately go in his favour, and weaken the US government's case against the MegaUpload company and its management, but he was critical yesterday of the delay it has caused to his extradition hearing, presumably keen to have the matter resolved once and for all, even if there is a risk of it meaning he might be taken to the US where, if found guilty of the charges made against him, he could face jail time.
He tweeted yesterday: "Extradition hearing delayed til March. Dirty delay tactics by the US. They destroyed my business. Took all my assets. Time does the rest".
Meanwhile one of Dotcom's legal team, William Akel, told Reuters: "You obviously want the extradition case to go ahead as soon as you can, but you have to put up with the inevitable. It was inevitable that the hearing for August was going to be vacated because we have two existing cases in the High Court".
MC ULTRA ADMITS TO POSTING TULISA SEX TAPE
As previously reported, the video featuring the former N-Dubz singer surfaced online in March, via a website selling the six minute recording for $5.99 a download. However, the video was quickly taken offline after lawyers for the 'X-Factor' judge gained a court order against the London company operating the website that was distributing the footage.
Although, when rumours of a sex tape first surfaced last year Contostavlos's legal reps issued a statement saying that the video was "100% fake", after the actual recording went online Tulisa issued a statement of her own via YouTube admitting that it was real, adding that it was Edwards who had filmed it, and who had probably uploaded it too.
Constavlos then launched a lawsuit against Edwards and a number of other defendants. The singer's ex initially denied responsibility, claiming that making such a video publicly available was "ungentlemanly". However, according to The Telegraph, at a hearing yesterday his lawyer read out a statement saying: ''Mr Edwards has admitted responsibility for publication of the video, apologised for it, and promised not to do it again".
A further hearing is due to take place this Thursday, at which Contostavlos' lawyers will confirm to Judge Michael Tugendhat details of a settlement with Edwards.
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SCOTTISH MAN IN COURT OVER FAKE T IN THE PARK TICKETS
Paul Reidy from Bathgate in West Lothin is accused of running a fraudulent scheme from February this year selling fake tickets to the Scottish music festival. He somehow persuaded three people to part with £300 each for VIP tickets to the event, which they believed would get them access to a VIP area at the festival.
To be fair, unlike the worrying number of ticket fraudsters online these days, who just never send out any tickets, or who supply fakes via the mail, Reidy does seem to have gone the extra distance, by dressing up as security guard at the event to smuggle his misled ticket buyers onto the festival's site.
It's not clear quite how far he got in that pursuit, but clearly the scam was identified by festival officials, leading to Reidy's arrest. Already on bail for other offences, Reidy was granted bail again yesterday providing he makes no effort to contact his unwitting customers. Reidy pleaded not guilty to the charges made against him, and will go on trial at Perth Sheriff Court in October.
It wasn't the only counterfeit ticket scam linked to T In The Park this year, and two other men were arrested accused of selling fake wristbands. Meanwhile in London hundreds of fans were reportedly turned away from Live Nation's Wireless Festival this weekend, also having been sold fake tickets, seemingly via websites like Gumtree and eBay. Reps for both T In The Park and Wireless have advised music fans to only ever buy tickets from official outlets in the future.
Meanwhile, anyone who bought fake tickets to this weekend's Wireless has been asked to contact the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau throughits website www.nfib.police.uk.
RUN-DMC HAVE REFORMED, ACCORDING TO REPORTS
Back in 2002, MC Run told fans: "We can't perform anymore. Nobody wants to see Run-DMC without Jay. Run-DMC is officially retired. I cannot get out in front of my fans with a new DJ. Some rock bands can replace the drummer [but] I don't know any other way but to be the three original members. That's all I can say. We are retired".
However, if these reports are correct, it seems that the duo have had a change of heart. A source told AllHipHop: "Run-DMC is definitely back together, and it's a great day for hip hop".
The band write: "That's it then, it's the end. With neither a whimper, a bang or a reunion. 30 years of ideas and melodies, endless meetings and European tours, press releases, singalong choruses and Dada sound poetry, finally at an end".
Adding that it is hard to fully explain why they have called it a day, they noted: "We felt we'd got to a point where what we did as a band - and specifically the writing, recording, touring cycle - wasn't doing justice to what Chumbawamba set out to do in the first place".
PRINCE PARTS COMPANY WITH UNIVERSAL PUBLISHING
Prince's manager Kiran Sharma told CMU: "We are pleased to announce that Prince and Universal have reached a mutual agreement in terminating their long standing publishing deal. It is an exciting opportunity for Prince to consider fresh and new ideas for all his music".
LADY GAGA REGRESSING ON NEW ALBUM
ADELE WORKING ON NEW MATERIAL, BUT NO RUSH TO RELEASE
Says one of those wonderful sources to the Daily Star: "Adele loves performing but she doesn't feel comfortable being such a high-profile celebrity. It all got a bit much for her last year and she wants to take a bit of time out of the fame game to be a normal mum. The last thing she wants is for her kid to become a celebrity baby or media commodity. Being a good mum is a lot more important to her than selling records and she's made it clear her priorities have changed now she's pregnant".
Said source added: "She doesn't want to be travelling the world touring or promoting when she can be at home. Although she's already started masterminding the third album, the chances of fans getting to hear it any time soon are slim to non-existent".
Meanwhile Wilson has told reporters: "We've exchanged a couple of emails about the next album. I am concentrating on writing as many songs as I can for her. I am building some tracks".
PETER BRODERICK ANNOUNCES NEW ALBUM
Speaking about the album, Broderick told CMU: "I have recently been experimenting at home with a microphone and a laptop, recording and uploading new songs for free online, each one alongside a photo and some words, and open to comments from the outside world. Robert (Erased Tapes label founder) then got behind all the songs, which gave me the courage to finish the music for this release".
He continued: "These songs are best viewed as a collection of lyrical and vocal experiments. Of course the instruments and the music are important, but this album is held together by a dialogue of voices. Conversations with myself and with others. Several tracks contain lyrical contributions from friends and strangers, made possible with the help of the internet".
And here's the tracklist:
Inside Out There
TAME IMPALA ANNOUNCE UK SHOWS
The band have also given more of a taste of what the album, entitled 'Lonerism', will sound like via a free download of album track 'Apocalypse Dreams'.
30 Oct: London, Brixton Academy
FESTIVAL LINE-UP UPDATE
FESTIBELLY, Lymington, Hampshire, 25-26 Aug: Festibelly has announced that its headliners will be Willy Moon on Saturday and Gold Panda on Sunday. Across the weekend they will also be joined by the newly announced likes of Rob Da Bank, The Ragga Twins, Bastille, Clock Opera, Man Like Me, Labyrinth Ear and Fossil Collective. www.festibelly.com
ICELAND AIRWAVES, various venues, Reykjavik, Iceland, 31 Oct - 4 Nov: There were already quite a lot of acts announced to play Iceland Airwaves, but there's always room for more. Especially when new announcees include THEESatisfaction, Kwes and Ghostpoet. Also new on the bill are Swans, Mo Kenney, The Barr Brothers, Moss, Thee Attacks, HAM, Hermigervill, Berndsen, My Bubba & Mi Ojba Rasta, Sudden Weather Change, Cheek Mountain Thief, Thorunn Antonia, Elín Ey and Eldar Ásgeir Trausti. www.icelandairwaves.is
KENDAL CALLING, Lowther Deer Park, Hackthorpe, East Cumbria, 27-29 Jul: Now sold out but still adding acts to its line-up at a rapid rate, Kendal Calling has announced over 100 new additions, including The Lightning Seeds, Redlight, Sound Of Guns, BEAK>, Karima Francis, Jenny O, Admiral Fallow and Hatcham Social. www.kendalcalling.co.uk
NOZSTOCK, Bromyard, Herefordshire, 27-29 Jul: New on the bill for this year's Nozstock are Bass Clef, Psymmetrix, Asmilon, Monad, Stumbeleine, Brocksteady, Prymedia, Tmez and Larsey. They join a line-up which also includes The Futureheads, Dreadzone, The Proclaimers, The Correspondents, Willy Moon and Son Of Dave. www.nozstock.com
SECRETSUNDAZE GO BANG!, London Pleasure Gardens, Royal Victoria Docks, London, 26 Aug: This one day mini-fest put together by the folks behind Secretsundaze and due to take place at the London Pleasure Gardens has added Motor City Drum Ensemble and DVS1 to a line-up featuring Matthew Herbert, Four Tet, Levon Vincent, Sven Weisemann and Ben UFO, among others. www.facebook.com/events/366258953427231/
BRIGHTON'S ROUNDER RECORDS ANNOUNCES CLOSURE
In a statement, manager Steve Sexton said: "It is with huge regret and sadness that we have to announce that we are closing down. We will shut our doors at 6pm on Sunday 29 Jul after 46 years of being a record shop in Brighton Square. What we have always strived to do is to stock the best range of music at the best prices for our customers - sadly that is not enough for us to stay open".
"We are closing because we can't make it add up any more. We are a business that has been decimated by downloads (both legal and illegal), VAT avoidance by the big online retailers, a double dip recession, and the decline of the high street. Our lease has ended and we have nowhere to go".
"We would like to give heartfelt thanks to all our customers over the years, and hope that we have managed to provide you with some special and great music throughout this time. That's why we have been here - as place to obtain, hear, find out about, discuss all types of the weird and wonderful world of music, to be a social hub for a musical city, a place where future bands are born, where record labels are started, where local bands can stock their first release, where you can get tickets for gigs, where there's something playing on the shop stereo that might be your new favourite band. Sadly, in 2012, this is just not financially viable".
MORE COLLECTING SOCIETY REGULATION TO BE CONSIDERED IN BRUSSELS
According to Reuters, a new bill to be published on Wednesday will propose new rules to force collecting societies to distribute monies it collects from media owners, digital service providers and the live, clubbing and retail industries more quickly to its members, ie songwriters and publishers, and to force rights organisations to be more transparent about its fee structures.
Other measures in the bill will cover that favourite topic when European Union types consider collecting societies, moves to make more rights organisations licence more services on a multi-territory basis, something the EU has been pushing for in the collecting society space for years, with limited success (though arguably those societies and rights owners offering multi-territory solutions are more motivated by commercial potential than placating European regulators). The new draft reportedly offers songwriters to option to opt out of the collective licensing system where pan-European deals are not offered by their society.
Although welcomed by some songwriter groups - Kelvin Smits from artists' lobby group Younison told Reuters: "It is time that the money collected in our name reaches the rightful author in a timely manner instead of being spent on marble car parks" - many collecting societies are likely to resist further regulation. The draft law reportedly positions some of the measures as being necessary to combat piracy, which seems dubious, though certainly some and possibly all rights organisations could do with some reform. Though, to be fair, most people agree the UK's PRS For Music is among those societies that offers its members a pretty good deal.
UNIVERSAL PROMOTES IT EXEC
Muir told CMU: "Throughout his tenure at Universal Music Group, Jens has proven himself to be an innovative and pragmatic executive with the essential hands-on-experience and skill set to oversee this key area of our global business. We're delighted to recognise his achievement with this well-deserved promotion".
BUZZMEDIA MAY BUY SPIN MAGAZINE
Needless to say, talk of the web publisher buying Spin has led to speculation the 27 year old music magazine, that has been boosting its online operations of late, might cease to be a print title, with some predicting the September/October edition may be the last, after which Spin would become an online-only publication.
BARLOW AND LLOYD WEBBER COLLABORATING AGAIN
According to The Sun, Lloyd-Webber has revealed: "I am writing with Gary Barlow again. I've come up with the tune this time and he's already emailed me with lyrics this morning. It hasn't got a title yet. Gary's going to be down in Majorca this summer and so will I, so we'll get together and something will come out of it".
So, Barlow and Lloyd-Webber want to bother the charts again together. Isn't this the sort of thing the European Union was created to prevent? I mean, let's remember what happened when Lloyd-Webber teamed up with Timmy Mallet to have a go at pop music (or was that an urban myth, I can never remember).