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2 MusicWeek20.04.12 NEWS EDITORIAL

A holo experience

UNFORTUNATELY, TIM CAN’T BE HERE to bring you this week’s editorial comment. He’s off gallivanting in a futuristic land where there are myriad stunning visual and interactive facets to every music release. (And where it’s possible to refer to yourself in the third-person at the start of a column and not look a bit of a knob.) This week’s leader is instead brought to you by holo-Tim, and,

just like the what-the-F-are-they-doing-hang-on-this-kind-of-works digital resurrection of Tupac Shakur at Coachella, I’m hoping everyone will be chattering about it for days to come. And make no mistake, everyone’s been talking about Tupac. Gossip news blast anchors, teenage Facebook blatherers, Twitter’s insta- parody vendors… even The Daily Telegraph’s been at it. (Somehow managing to avoid a ‘Thugz Mansion Tax’ gag in the process. For shame.) Those keen to deflate everyone’s fun with a prick of

explanative science have uncovered that the Tupac avatar seen strutting about (okay, okay, hovering) in southern California on Sunday was probably a modern-day evolution of a 19th-century shyster’s trick – Pepper’s Ghost – rather than super- sophisticated CGI. Apparently, it really was down to little more than smoke and mirrors. (Without the smoke – which for a Tupac effigy really does feel a little unnatural.)

“Isn’t the Tupac hologram exactly the sort of gimmick retailers have been wanting labels to add to CDs for years?”

To industry Big Cheeses, the knowledge that such a

cheap’n’cheerful escapade can spark quite such a globally- raptured reaction will surely have set dollar signs ringing quick- smart into eyeballs. (You remember eyeballs – they’re the things just above the worry-bags.) Why pay flesh-and-blood performers to recreate the joy of a

deceased legend when clever lighting tricks will do the job? And why let musical theatre rake in all the post-Jacko bucks when all you need is a projector? Yet perhaps the lesson to learn from the excitement surrounding

UnTruePac isn’t one of carbon copying – but future possibilities. He’s proven that just a little bit of technology (with a wee touch of experimentation) can send punters into a tailspin when married with their favourite music. Just think about where this sort of thinking can take the

flagging albums market: augmented reality concerts in living rooms viewed through a mobile; interactive gigs controlled through motion-sensing devices… basically, a product that finally offers more than tracks pulled off Megaupload – and which might even attract some additional micropayment revenue. But hang on a second… isn’t this what retailers have been

saying for years? That with just a little innovation around physical product – and, perhaps, a little inspiration from digitally creative businesses – we can reignite consumer interest in music? And haven’t those voices been hushed with accusations of gimmickry? Well it turns out cheap tricks are not only in vogue, but getting

the kids all het up. Nice to know that as the proudly old school Record Store Day arrives, some of music’s most forward-thinking voices still seem to coming from behind the tills. Tim Ingham, Editor

Do you have views on this column? Feel free to comment by emailing FIRST EVER PRIZE FOR 200,000 PLAYS ON UK RADIO

Snow Patrol ‘staggered’ as single claims Nielsen airplay milestone



now Patrol’s 2006 single Chasing Cars has become the first song ever to be

awarded the Nielsen Music 200,000 Plays Award for airplay across UK radio. The track was first played on

UK radio on April 24, 2006. It has received most support from the radio stations which now make up the Heart Network. The Nielsen Music Airplay

Awards were introduced in 2005 to recognise the success of radio plugging campaigns. Levels of certification start

with the Impact Award for 5,000 plays on UK radio within eight weeks before release. Recognition is also given to songs which reach 10,000, 30,000, 100,000 and now 200,000 plays. All UK radio plays across Nielsen’s extensive panel of 275 UK stations, since January 2000, are included to calculate the awards.

Snow Patrol singer Gary

Lightbody said: “We are staggered by this news. It's an incredible achievement and we're all very proud of this milestone for Chasing Cars. Thanks to all who played it and helped to make it so successful” Gavin Hughes, head of

regional radio for Polydor, added: “Everyone at Fiction and Polydor are delighted. It’s testament to the timelessness of the song and the success the band enjoy at UK radio. Thank you to

all the UK stations that have continued to support the band over the years”. The first song to receive the

100,000 plays award was Groovejet (If This Ain’t Love) by Spiller in 2005. Chief executive at the Radio

Academy, John Myers, commented: “Snow Patrol’s success is outstanding. “Radio plays, promotes and

encourages great music but talent comes first. Snow Patrol have this in abundance.”

PIAS launches Nordic operation

PIAS Entertainment Group and Swedish independent distributor Border Music have entered into a new JV which will operate as PIAS Nordic. The new company will be

launched on May 1 and will become part of the PIAS Group’s pan-EU network of local offices and operations, which already includes: UK, France, Germany/Switzerland/Austria (GSA), Benelux, Ireland and Spain. With an office in

Gothenburg, Sweden, PIAS Nordic will offer a ‘one-stop solution’ for independent labels and artists looking for physical and digital distribution, and marketing and promotion services in Scandinavia.

Outside of Sweden, it will

use Target Distribution in Denmark, Supersounds in Finland and Indie Distribution in Norway as local distributors. Shipments, stock control,

statements, accounting and administration will be centralised for the Nordic region, whilst sales, marketing and promotion will all be handled on a territory basis. PIAS Nordic will be looking

after labels that are already part of the PIAS label roster in Scandinavia - such as Play It Again Sam (Agnes Obel, Editors, Seasick Steve), Wichita (First Aid Kit, The Cribs, Best Coast) and Infectious (Temper Trap, Local Natives) together with a number of other UK and

US labels already distributed by PIAS and Border. In addition, [PIAS] Nordic

will be offering third-party licensing and rights collection services in the region. Pelle Eriksson, general

manager of Border Music, will be overseeing the new venture as general manager. PIAS Group MD Edwin

Schroter (pictured above) said: “Following a great year for us in Scandinavia, with a chart- dominating album for Agnes Obel in Denmark, and the recent No. 1 album for First Aid Kit in Sweden, it felt like a logical step to start looking at our set-up in the Nordic region.”

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