The Phantom Bits & Pieces
News, news, news, just for you, you ,you. Oh, and probably some cynical commentary from yours truly, as well. As ever, if you have any music related news to share, don't be shy. I don't bite that hard.
Top Of The Pops axed! After 42 years, the BBC's weekly popular music show; Top Of The Pops, has been axed. I probably watched this show quite regularly till I was about 12 years old, but then it was aimed at the youngsters really. I'm not gonna get all sentimental with reasons like "I grew up with TOTP!", cos really, I don't care. Obviously care enough to share the news, but it really is no skin off my nose. The final episode of TOTP will be aired some time this summer. At its most popular point (in the '70s) it was getting around 19 million viewers, which for the UK is phenomenal – but recently viewing figures have been as low as 1 million. Oh well.
Portishead are to release new material for the first time in 9 years. The songs are completed, but no details on an actual release date are available yet. Founding member, Geoff Barrow, described the new material as "weird", but also said "it's nice to think us old gits have a few tunes in us without sounding like coffee table Zero 7/Moby/chill out shit!" – perhaps someone else also wasn't too impressed with the latest Zero 7 album!
I'm not really bothered by this news, but some of you might be – the Arctic Monkeys bassist has left the band. Andy Nicholson had previously blamed his absence on their tour on fatigue. But who knows why he left? He just did. The world goes on.
Madlib has released his own instrumental version of the recent Dudley Perkins album Expressions. It is titled Madlib – The Dudley Perkins "Expressions" Instrumentals. Currently it is only available via iTunes, but with any luck it will come out on all your favourite formats very soon. I'm quite interested in hearing this, as frankly, anything Madlib touches turns to gold – oh, plus the Dudley Perkins album is very good.
Evidence, of Dilated Peoples, has announced he will be releasing a solo album due out March 2007. Nothing quite like giving plenty of notice! Apparently Dilated Peoples have now fulfilled their contract agreements with Capitol Records, and as such Evidence fancied a solo project. The album will be called The Weatherman and the production will mainly be by The Alchemist and Evidence.
Internet sites better watch their backs if they have an mp3 search facility on them. A precedent has been set. The Dutch website zoekmp3.nl has been shut down by a Dutch court, not because it hosts illegal material, but because it hosts links to illegal material. Apparently the court ruled that having a warning on their site, stating that people shouldn't breach copyright laws, wasn't enough as the very reason people would be on their site in the first place was to find illegal material. It would seem the court made this harsh ruling to let the rest of Europe know that they weren't going to let themselves become the European hotbed of internet piracy.
Bloody hell… apparently Namibia are inviting Britney Spears to have her baby in their country, since Angelina Jolie already did the same thing. But it goes a step further than that – the deputy tourism leader of Namibia claims Spears is considering the invitation, although her publicist claims it is false and probably a hoax. The icing on the cake for me is this quote from the deputy tourism fella… "We have a little niche tourism market that we are developing." Absolutely classic!
That'll do you for news. I had a couple of people get back to me bout the festivals they are going to this year, but if anyone else is going to one, let me know – I want to try and get a few reports from different people up on the blog. Should make for interesting reading.