A weekly update on all things music, advertising, and technology coming straight to you from Anthony Vanger at MassiveMusic. #TWIM
ARTIST OF THE WEEK: WORKING MEN’S CLUB
Sometimes the image is just as important as the music. Working Men’s Club, an up-and-coming guitar band from Manchester, harks back to some of the bands that came out in the 80s like Duran Duran, Human League and Soft Cell where image was (almost) everything. But they also have a chip on their shoulders because they are one of the few guitar bands on the scene today. “The reason there aren’t as many popular guitar bands right now is because they keep reproducing the same shit,” vocalist Sydney Minsky-Sargeant told NME last year. Fair enough. And maybe WMC is the band to resuscitate this neglected genre, but if they are going to succeed they will have to keep writing the hooks. Then they can dress however they want.
AD OF THE WEEK: PORN HUB PRESENTS PREMIUM LOVERS
PornHub climbs out of the internet gutter and sells itself as a family product
When you’re in a relationship, you share everything with your partner, right? What about those dirty little secrets, especially porn? So for the launch of Premium Lovers, Pornhub Premium’s new shared account for two, ad agency Officer & Gentleman brought together real couples to find out how much they really know about their partner’s taste in porn. The results are surprisingly cute, even humorous, and overall the effect is to humanize something taboo. Nice work.
THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT HAS PLEDGED £1.5 BILLION FOR ARTS AND CULTURE RECOVERY
Arts organisations across the UK stand to receive a one-off cash injection from the government.
Music venues, theatres and arts institutions across the UK will receive £1.5 billion of support from the government. The extra funding follows a weeks-long campaign by those working in music, theatre and the arts which highlighted the danger many arts organisations faced without further government assistance.
The package, which includes £880 million of grants, plus a further £270 million in loans, represents the biggest one-off investment in UK culture, according to the government. £120 million will be spent on restarting construction on cultural infrastructure. Extra money will also be made available for devolved governments with £97 million for Scotland, £59 million for Wales and £33 million for Northern Ireland.
Reaction to the announcement has been positive, though many working in culture remained cautious.
THE UK’S FIRST SOCIALLY DISTANCED MUSIC VENUE IS OPENING THIS SUMMER
Line-ups for the Virgin Money Unity Arena in Newcastle will be announced next week.
It was only a matter of time. The UK’s first socially distanced music venue is opening this summer.
The venue – the Virgin Money Unity Arena – will be located at Newcastle Racecourse and will host everything from DJ sets and live music to entertainment and comedy. All line-ups will be announced this week.
Ticket holders will have their own viewing areas which will be located two metres apart, to stay in line with measures due to Covid-19. There will be one-way access to toilets and food and drink will also be able to be pre-ordered.
KANYE WEST IS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT
Kanye West has some news. Not content with working on his album ‘God’s Country’ and a recent Gap Capsule, Yeezy is going to enter politics.
It’s seemingly 100% confirmed, with Ye stating his intention to run in the 2020 Presidential elections on Twitter.
ENNIO MORRICONE, LEGENDARY FILM SCORE COMPOSER, DEAD AT 91
Ennio Morricone, the world-renown film score composer, has died at age 91. The Italian composer was best known for his work with director Sergio Leone on films such as The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, A Fist Full of Dollars and Once Upon a Time in the West.
Over the course of his career, Morricone scored more than 500 films and won two Academy Awards – for his work on Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight as well as an honorary award in 2007.
Speaking to BBC Breakfast this morning, following news of Morricone’s death, Hans Zimmer described the composer as an “icon.”
DISNEY PLANS TRON SEQUEL AND WANTS DAFT PUNK TO MAKE THE SOUNDTRACK
A third instalment in the Tron film series is in the works according to Disney’s President of Music & Soundtracks Mitchell Leib.
On the Light The Fuse podcast, Leib said he’d recently met with Daft Punk’s manager Paul Hahn and that “we’re looking at making a sequel to Tron [Legacy] now. We’re making a Tron 3.”
Daft Punk wrote the soundtrack to the 2010 film Tron:Legacy, which the upcoming film will be a sequel to. Tron: Ascension was previously in the works in 2015 but Disney cancelled production as it was about to begin.
ROLAND AND KORG FINED £5.5M FOR ‘PRICE-FIXING’
Roland and Korg have been fined £5.5m by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) watchdog for breaking competition law in the UK. The music-tech brands “have been fined for implementing resale price maintenance (RPM) designed to restrict retailer freedom to set prices online by requiring their musical instruments to be sold at or above a minimum price.” Retail price maintenance is when a supplier and retailer agree to keep prices at a certain minimum or maximum point, which can be designed to stop retailers competing too fiercely on price.
The watchdog said Roland restricted pricing of its electronic drum kits and accessories between January 2011 and April 2018, while Korg did the same for its hi-tech music equipment and synthesizers between June 2015 and April 2018. According to The Guardian, Roland was fined just over £4m and Korg £1.5m.
Written by Anthony Vanger
Additional reporting by Adam “Badger” Woolf
Artwork by Gustav Balderdash