Streaming under scrutiny

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The legal streaming music library Spotify had no problem finding its way into the hands of music-hungry consumers this year. Its intuitive interface and huge catalogue of music made it an instant leader in digital music services.

So it’s inevitable that with success comes scrutiny as commentators attempt to analyse and figure out exactly how Spotify is able to stream such a huge range of music and still afford to operate. It was no surprise really when it was reported in August that major labels owned a combined 18% share in the company. (more…)

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Videos: The Muppets do Queen, Rough ladies footballers, John Joe

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The Muppets do Bohemian Rhapsody
The Muppet Show cover the Queen classic. It’s more entertaining than watching X-Factor contestants butcher the hits.


Dirty tactics on the field
It’s not just spoiled Premiership superstars or out-and-out thugs who play rough on the football field, the ladies soccer teams can be just as bad.

John Joe – The Toy Show’s breakout hit
A young eight year-old wannabe horologist charmed a nation with his giddy appearance on The Late Late Show Toy Show.

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Music video winners, Albums 2010, Arctic Photos

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IMTV Video Music Awards winners
The first awards show to celebrate the work of Irish music video directors took place last weekend. Eoghan Kidney won best video for Valerie Francis’ Punches and Best Director overall for his videos for Fight Like Apes, Le Bien and Delorentos. Watch the winning videos.
http://bit.ly/imtv09

Stereogum’s 25 most anticipated albums of 2010
We haven’t even given this decade a proper send-off yet but 2010 promises new albums from MGMT, Four Tet, LCD Soundsystem, Interpol and Joanna Newsom. Stereogum counts them all.
Listen at Stereogum

Amazing photos from the Arctic
Paul Nicklen spent 15 years photographing wildlife in the coldest regions of the world. The results are stunning.
Photos of the Day

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Band of Blogs: Efterklang, Penguin Prison, Monarchy, O Emperor

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Efterklang return
Denmark’s finest pastoral post-rock band will release Magic Chairs in February. Listen to the sweeping album opener Modern Drift.
http://bit.ly/efterk

Penguin Prison
A electro-pop kid from New York releasing through the influential Neon Gold Records. A Funny Thing is the tune turning heads and moving feet at the moment.
http://www.myspace.com/penguinprison

O Emperor
After an impressive appearance on Under the Ether and some blog love from The Torture Garden music blog, this Cork band are definitely on the “ones to watch” list.
Listen at the Torture Garden

Monarchy
Mystery surrounds this London dance duo at the moment meaning we can only really focus on the tunes. Which luckily is not a problem as the songs are superbly crafted synth-pop/affairs with electro and disco touches. They’ll reveal more about themselves in January 2010. How’s that for unique marketing?
http://www.myspace.com/monarchysound

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Sites of the Week: Clients from Hell, STFU Marrieds

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Music Marketing
Irish-based site that looks at new ways the industry can sell music in these tumultuous, shifting times.
http://musicmarketing.ie

Clients from Hell
“I don’t want to pay for the red words on my website, can you use less red so that I can get a discount?” Plenty more face palms abound on this web design horror stories site.

http://clientsfromhell.tumblr.com

STFU Marrieds
This site calls out married couples who practice the Facebook equivalent of P.D.A in their status updates. Whether it’s annoying exaltations of love or domestic tiffs over the dinner for all to see, we don’t want to know.
http://stfumarrieds.tumblr.com

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When Timbaaaaaaaaaaaa Met Katy

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Husky beat-packer Timbaland is gearing up for the release of his new record- Shock Value 2. The LP hosts vocals from basically anyone to ever have any kind of hit. We’re talking Elton John, Daughtry, and Miley (obv). And, Katy Perry. Normally the combination of Katy and Timbaaaaaaaaaaaaa (sorry, we’ve looked ‘Timbaland’ up in UD and that’s the correct pronunciation) would make us want to, well, we won’t go into that. But ‘If We Ever Meet Again’ has wormed its way onto the internet, and it’s literally not bad.

Please Note: The song is a remorseful floor-filler. Timbaaaaaa and Katy only caught eyes and had a little ‘moment’ in The Club. It is poignant.

Our Top 4 Favourite Bits?
1. The little Swannee whistle at 0.04
2. How it goes from Timbaaaaa being all alone At The Club chatting Katy up, to being INSIDE KATY’S THOUGHTS at 0.45.
3. At 1.38, Katy admits that she is ‘flirting with her eyes’. This is an advanced stage of ‘smiling with your eyes’, we think.
4. At 4.07 (yes, we skipped a bit in the middle, it was more of the same really) there is an interloper of sorts going ‘what’ like a slightly deaf uncle.

Our Least Favourite Bit?
The scary section from 4.27 onwards. This might have been a remnant of another track. Sort it out please.

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