BRAND NEW – The Sun Will Come Up, The Seasons Will Change from Nina Nesbitt

“This album is an open diary of someone in their early twenties,” Nina Nesbitt tells Apple Music. It’s been five years since her folk-pop debut Peroxide (inspired by her on-off relationship with a certain Ed Sheeran), leaving the Edinburgh singer-songwriter a lot of time to reflect. “I wrote a lot of the first album when I was 17, 18 and I didn’t really know who I was or what my sound was or what I wanted,” she says. “I think you can hear that in that album—not in a bad way—but it just represented where I was. I really wanted to make an album with a cohesive sound to it.” This is a follow-up dripping with lush vocals and synth textures across songs on self-discovery (“The Moments I’m Missing”) to sassy odes to singledom (“Somebody Special”). “In a lot of the songs on the first album, I’m a victim,” she says. “Whereas in this album I wanted to take control and give my music an empowering feel to it.” Part of that empowerment was taking a step back from writing about love. “I often hear songs just about relationships, and that’s cool, but I want to cover a lot of […]

Bring Me the Horizon drop AMO

It’s no longer possible to call Bring Me the Horizon a rock band. On their sixth album, the Sheffield four-piece draw on so many genres and ideas, they evade any attempt at categorisation. “I’ve always thought there’s too many borders, too many bridges, that people don’t cross in music,” frontman Oli Sykes tells Apple Music. “The real world has too much of that as it is. I guess that’s our crusade.” amo—Portuguese for “love”—stretches from bittersweet pop to electronic experimentalism, calling on an art-pop visionary, a legendary beatboxer and an extreme-metal icon along the way. Here, Sykes breaks down their crusade, track by track. i apologise if you feel something “We knew it was almost impossible to give anyone a heads-up of what this album was going to sound like. It was important for that first track just to be like, ‘Forget whatever you think it’s going to sound like, because you’re not going to be able to guess from anything we’ve shown you before.’” MANTRA “At the end of the writing process, I had a bit of a meltdown. Even though we did have a lot of stuff, we didn’t have that song where we were like, ‘This is […]

“Most of my mixtapes all had songs I’d written while I was in jail,” Fredo tells Apple Music

“Most of my mixtapes all had songs I’d written while I was in jail,” Fredo tells Apple Music. “This is all different. I was free the whole time and put a lot of time and thought into it. This is my first album, and my first piece of work I’ve been out here to do.” Third Avenue is a debut that marks a period of relative serenity for a London MC who’s overcome two prison spells and celebrated a UK No. 1 (2018’s “Funky Friday” with Dave). It’s a debut that also, crucially, pays tribute to his roots. “I’m from a place called Mozart Estate,” he says. “West Kilburn on the map. There are six avenues leading into the estate, and I grew up on the third one. I’m here today because of that place. If I had left, ain’t no telling what I’d be doing.” Take a guided tour of Third Avenue with Fredo. “Survival of the Fittest” “I had that song for, like, a year. We didn’t want to start with nothing too jumpy, or nothing too vibesy. We just wanted to start it with something more ‘core.” “Morning” “When it comes to individual songs, I never sit […]

Music industry tackles illicit challenge to streaming services

A group of major music labels is seeking court orders that will force major telcos to block online services that they say represent an illicit challenge to streaming services such as Apple Music and Spotify. The application to block the four services is being coordinated by Music Rights Australia. The action has been brought in the Federal Court by the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA), Sony Music Entertainment Australia, Universal Music Australia and Warner Music. If the application is granted — and the Federal Court is yet to knock back a site-blocking injunction brought under Section 115a of the Copyright Act — then customers of Foxtel, Optus, TPG and Vodafone, as well as customers of the telcos’ subsidiaries, will be affected by the site blocks. The current legal action is the first time so-called ‘stream ripping’ sites, which allow audio from streaming services such as Spotify to be downloaded, have been targeted by a Section 115a action. Barrister Rob Clark appearing for the applicants this morning at a case management hearing acknowledged the action is “somewhat different” to past site-blocking cases “in so far as the online locations don’t themselves provide content or the means to get content [such as] […]

Paid-for music streaming set to overtake free listening this year

This year, the number of people paying for music over a streaming service will overtake people listening for free. That’s good news for the likes of Spotify, Deezer and Apple Music which have upset the traditional music model. Experts believe that streaming has made it fashionable to pay for music again, with the latest numbers from November 2018 showing 20.6% opting to pay, up from 18.3% the year before. At the same time, free streaming – either through services that use adverts, as part of a free trial or with a family license paid for by someone else – is gradually decreasing, currently standing at 21.5%, down from 21.7% previously. Apple Music is Apple’s answer to Spotify (Apple) The figures, based on a panel of 1,500 people quizzed by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), show a narrow 0.9% gap between paid and free, indicating a possible victory for paid-for services by the end of 2019. ‘Ten or 15 years ago popular opinion had it that it was all over for the music business and people would no longer pay for music,’ ERA chief executive Kim Bayley said. These figures are a striking vindication of the innovation and investment of digital […]

Spotify, the leading music streaming app, is finally profitable

Spotify is about to try to become a podcasting giant with two new acquisitions — and we have some suggestions for that — but first, it’s crossing an important milestone with its music streaming business. Today, for the very first time, the company is reporting that it’s turned a profit. That’s right: some 13 years and 96 million paid subscribers later, Spotify is finally making money. Unless you count that one time a complicated tax situation technically threw it into the black. “[F]or the first time in company history, Operating Income, Net Income, and Free Cash Flow were all positive,” reads a portion of Spotify’s financial announcement this morning. Specifically, the company made an operating profit of €94 million, or about $107 million. It’s possibly a good sign for the entire industry, not just Spotify, because Spotify is arguably leading that industry today. Those 96 million paid subscribers add up to nearly double Apple Music’s 50 million subscribers, and Spotify announced it had 207 million monthly active users in total this past quarter. All that said, the profit may not last. The company is forecasting a loss of €50 to €100 million (about $57 to $113 million) next quarter and […]