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    More generally I think this is a good thing, though maybe it would affect Wire somehow? I'm not really that knowledgable on music rights legislation, but would EMI still own the nominal rights to TIC/ABIAC/IBTABA/TD/M/TFL? (I say nominal because they never did anything bloody with them)
    "Mute artists Depeche Mode, Goldfrapp, Richard Hawley, Kraftwerk and White Rabbits remain signed to and marketed worldwide by EMI Music"

    In other words, most of the money-makers stay with Mute. Surprised they didn't retain Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, frankly.

    "To help fund the label, EMI is licensing to Miller part of the Mute back catalogue."

    Maybe I'm reading this wrong, but to me it sounds like EMI still owns everything they bought in 2002, but that Miller's 'New Mute' will own new material by artists on his label's roster.
    wonder how much longer 'record labels' will have any relevance, seeing as lots of artists will probably move to downloads only and cut out the 'need' for the middle man.
    Surprised it's taking as long as it is.maybe 'record shops' will become 'stations for downloads' (for those without computers) where you walk into a store, hand over da money and download to the music player.
    That would be bleeding godawful.
    it would, but I suspect it'll happen............
    I would hope there would always be enough of an audience to keep a decent-sized independent record shop (like Sister Ray, for example) going. Much as I'd miss it (mostly for its eye-watering BARGINS), I could see Fopp going under (again!) in the not too distant future.
    Fopp isn't an indie now anyway, is it? It's just an HMV outlet store. There are still Chain With No Name stores dotted about, and my local indie has managed to stick around so far.
    Record labels have still have relevance and will continue to do so, not least because the means of making any sort of money out of music has become increasingly complex and the idea of DiY and bands getting famous purely via Myspace is a myth.

    The other side to this is that far from making it easier for bands to get noticed, the internet has made it harder because there is more music out there than ever before. Record companies of all shapes and sizes still have a job to do in finding the good stuff, and finding the right way to market it. It's not much different than before except that we can all hear the demo-tape mountain online if we want to. But 99 times out of 100 when I hear some new music it's not undiscovered talent, someone somewhere has found them and has "signed" them (albeit for little or no advance!)

    The Indie Record shop sector is also looking pretty good considering it is competing against the belief that music should be available for free. Indeed Rough Trade and Crash in Leeds are both consulting customers on sites for new branches..and the one good thing that has come from the threat of these places closing is that people have remembered they are there and started using them again. Don't get me wrong, the retail sector is greatly reduced, but it is still there if you want it and it does it's job very well and will continue to do so. If you don't believe me go to Rough Trade East on Brick Lane or Piccadilly Records on Oldham Street Manchester. I'm incapable of leaving either place empty handed.

    It is, increasingly, business as usual albeit the days of huge mega Major labels with money to burn and a huge budget for, ahem, "Fruit and Flowers" are over for now.
    It's ironic that while *making* music in an economy like this is a given, *selling* it becomes damnably hard. Really, everything kind of sucks. Sometimes.