Block Nickelback from your browser & other links of the week

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Sites of the Week: Press Play & Record, Our Cat Could Be Your Nine Lives & iMeme

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Press Play & Record
The return of the cassette? Every covermounted NME cassette tape from the ’80s in downloadable-form.
pressplayandrecord.wordpress.com

Our Cat Could Be Your Nine Lives
Cats as music critics or “feline music scribes”.
critickittens.tumblr.com

iMeme
If you’ve ever wondered where image memes are made, this might explain it.
michaelfogleman.com/memes/

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Bad lip reading: Ron Paul

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The latest in the Bad Lip Reading series tackles the speeches of Ron Paul in which the potential US presidential candidate tries to convince people to vote for him by talking about “the bad faeces pudding”. If you refuse he will “haunt your prostate”.

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Google Music launches and Spotify lurches

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Google finally launched its Music platform in the US last week. The web giant’s answer to Apple’s iCloud offers music downloads a la iTunes as well as a cloud-based web locker in which each user can host up to 20,000 songs in their accounts and stream those songs via various devices (Android-only for now) and the web browser from Google Music.

From the off, the store was offering a claimed 13 million tracks including songs from majors Sony, Universal and EMI as well as independent distributors including Tunecore, Beggars Group, Merlin, Merge and Warp. In a shrewd move, Google’s Artist Hub allows independent artists to sell the music they own the rights to, at the price they choose, for a one-time fee of $25. They keep 70% of sales and can allow users to listen to their songs for free if they desire.

Of course, it all ties in with Google’s other recent high profile platform Google +. You can share listens of songs purchased with your friends on the social network, much like Facebook’s much touted music sharing of songs on Spotify, Rdio, MOG and more ( which has racked up 1.5 billion shares in the first two months).

Back in Europe, Spotify launched in Belgium, Switzerland and Austria (still no sign of Ireland) in the same week that 234 independent niche dance music labels represented by STHoldings withdrew their songs from Spotify, Napster (it still exists!) and other US streaming services. Their decision was prompted by a review of their accounts which showed that 82% of listens came through streaming services but accounted for just 2.6% of its revenue and a study which concluded that streaming services are discouraging to music purchasing.
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