NME.COM

This week's news in pictures (20 December 2008)

  • The likes of Paul Weller (pictured), Suggs and Super Furry Animals' Gruff Rhys have joined a new campaign hoping to to save the traditional British pub. Save Our Pubs! is organised by the authors of new book 'The Rough Pub Guide; A Celebration Of The Great British Boozer', NME writer Paul Moody and Heavenly Records' Rob Turner.

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  • 'Notorious', the biopic of the late 90s rapper Notorious BIG, will be released in cinemas across the UK from February 13. 'Notorious' stars Brooklyn rapper Jamal Woolard in the lead role, and sees Notorious BIG associate P Diddy take the position of executive producer.

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  • The release of War Child's 'Heroes' album has been confirmed for February 16. The project sees music legends such as U2, Paul McCartney and Bob Dylan choose younger artists including Duffy and Rufus Wainwright to cover one of their songs. Originally, the album was due to be released on November 22. However, as word about the project spread, organisers were inundated with requests from other bands wanting to take part. Pic: PA Photos

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  • No Doubt drummer Adrian Young has said the band are unlikely to release any new material in 2009. The ska-influenced outfit announced they were reforming in November, with frontwoman Gwen Stefani also hinting that they would release an album. However, speaking to MTV News, Young said the band would continue working on fresh material while they tour, but a new release will still some way from completion. Pic: PA Photos

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  • Razorlight's Johnny Borrell has been writing songs for Florence And The Machine, he has admitted. Borrell said he was keen to distance himself from the project because he was worried his reputation could have a negative effect on Florence Welch's band.

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  • Jack White has interviewed Australian actress Cate Blanchett for a article in Interview magazine. In the feature, which takes the form of a question and answer session between White and Blanchett, the duo discuss their day jobs in music and film, as well as Shakespeare, religion and parenthood. Speaking about his children, White said: "We've got a girl and a boy now. Scarlett White and Henry Lee White. They're holding each other's hands right now. Each moment doesn't last long enough, does it?" Pic: Andy Willsher

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  • Van Morrison has announced that he will release the recent live recording of his 'Astral Weeks' album in the US in early 2009. The veteran singer re-recorded his landmark 1968 album during two live performances at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles in November. Pic: PA Photos

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  • Pete Doherty is to play the Bandwagon Christmas Party at Liverpool Academy on December 27. The gig, billed as 'Pete Doherty And Friends', sees the legendary Bandwagon clubnight return for a one-off night. Set up by former members of Liverpool band The Bandits, Bandwagon has previously hosted exclusive gigs by The Coral, as well as a rare solo performance by Oasis' Noel Gallagher in 2003. Pic: PA Photos

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  • MIA has launched a fashion range of T-shirts, bodysuits and leggings inspired by her album covers. The star designed them with model Okley Leslie, reports fashion website Catwalk Queen. MIA is calling the range Extended Merch, as it is heavily influenced by her music and features patterns from the covers of her albums 'Kala' and 'Arular'. Pic: Pieter M Van Hattem

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  • Elbow are set to perform and record their Nationwide Mercury Prize-winning album 'The Seldom Seen Kid' with the BBC Concert Orchestra on January 17 at the London Abbey Road studio. The performance will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 2 on the evening at 7pm (GMT).

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  • Brian Eno is reportedly set to provide the score for the newest movie from 'Lord Of The Rings' director Peter Jackson. The producer, who has recently worked with Coldplay and U2, is listed as the 'Original Music' creator in the filmâ

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  • Scarlett Johansson is auctioning off a used tissue on eBay for charity. The actress-turned-singer, who earlier this year released an album of Tom Waits covers entitled 'Anywhere I Lay My Head', claimed that the tissue had "value" because the cold she had while using it was supposedly caught from actor Samuel L Jackson. Johansson used the tissue while appearing on US TV show 'The Tonight Show with Jay Leno'. Pic: Dean Chalkley

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  • Mike Skinner has begun work on the final album from The Streets. Posting on his MySpace blog, the rapper-producer revealed that he is writing songs for his collective's fifth record, which he has previously told NME.COM will be the last under that name. Pic: Andy Willsher

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  • Tickets for RockNess are available now. As was reported on NME.COM, Scottish trio Biffy Clyro will headline the final day of the festival in Dores, Scotland next summer. The event takes place from June 12 to 14, 2009, with The Prodigy, Basement Jaxx and Dizzee Rascal also confirmed to play. Pic: Guy Eppel

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  • Kaiser Chiefs have made public a list of Mark Ronson's 99 favourite bands and artists. As part of their takeover of the Guardian's website, the Leeds band originally asked Ronson, producer of their recent 'Off With Their Heads' album, to compile a list featuring 100 artists, but he chose to leave one place available for a future band. Pic: PA Photos

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  • Iggy Pop, Alice Cooper and Moby are set to star in a new vampire film called 'Suck'. The music legends help tell a tale of vampires and the music business, reports The Guardian.

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  • Arcade Fire's Win Butler has spoken to NME.COM about the making of his band's new DVD documentary, 'Miroir Noir', describing it as a "window into the band". The documentary film, released last Monday (December 15), follows the band throughout the making of their 2007 album 'Neon Bible' and subsequent world tour. "It gives a little window into the band," Butler told NME.COM. "We wanted to do something that gave some idea of what the band is like live, and it seemed like having 50 cameras set up wasn't necessarily the best way to do that." Pic: James Quinton

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  • Songs from the likes of The Smiths and The Ting Tings are been given away free to celebrate Christmas. iTunes is giving away a series of songs throughout the 12 Days Of Christmas between December 26 and January 6. The free downloads are set to include "rare singles, live tracks and free music videos". Pic: Dean Chalkley

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  • Paul McCartney has spoken about the 'lost' Beatles track 'Carnival Of Light', telling fans not to expect "another 'Strawberry Fields'". The 14-minute experimental song, which The Beatles recorded in 1967, has gained near-mythical status among fans due to the fact it remains unreleased in any form. Pic: PA Photos

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  • Panic At The Disco have revealed that they will begin work on their next studio album after the Christmas holiday period. Writing on his blog, bassist Jon Walker explained that the foursome had already written songs for the follow-up to 2008's 'Pretty. Odd', and hoped to roadtest the material in the spring.

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