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City of Vilnius releases ‘socially distanced’ Xmas LP

In partnership with the city of Vilnius, a group of Lithuanian electronic music producers have released Re-Xmas, a ‘socially distanced’ Christmas album commemorating the “extraordinary” 2020 festive season.

As a video on the Re-Xmas project website explains, the album features reworkings of traditional Christmas songs, including ‘Jingle Bells’, ‘Silent Night and ‘O Christmas Tree’ (‘O Tannenbaum‘), by top local talent.

The ‘social distancing’ element sees the composers adding two equal intervals of pause – symbolising two metres’ distance – after each note from the song’s main melody.

Contributors include dark-techno DJ Alex Krell, ambient producer Fume and experimental electronic duo Lakeside Culture, with the album’s release supported by Lithuanian DJ collection Antidote Community.

The project also incorporates an audiovisual installation near Kablys, the Vilnius electronic music mecca, while the album will be played as album of the week on the national radio station LRT Opus.

Listen to the full Re-Xmas album on SoundCloud here.

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Amazon, Rammstein, New Bosses and the Sphere: 2018’s top stories

IQ is today shutting up shop until 2 January 2019.

While we’ll be sure to keep you abreast of any major industry goings-on over the festive period, there won’t be an IQ Index newsletter until we return, so don’t panic if your inbox looks decidedly devoid of concert business news for the remainder of 2018.

From everyone at IQ, we wish you a merry Christmas and a happy new year.

Now, read on for the IQ stories that reached the most people in the global concert industry this year…



Edmania: Sheeran breaks records across Europe with new onsales


Rob Hallett’s Robomagic joins Live Nation


AEG ends ties with StubHub, launches AXS Marketplace


800,000-selling Rammstein sets new Eventim record


Hardee warns of biz burnout as report reveals huge stress levels


Kerslake report: SMG, Showsec praised for “above and beyond” Manchester response


Introducing… the New Bosses 2018


‘Everyone will have the best seat in the house’: MSG takes wraps off Sphere London


Get Me Out!: Ticketmaster shuts down European resale sites


Amazon Tickets shuts shop

See you in 2019!


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Rocking fillers: Live music Christmas gift guide

Classic concert posters

The Rolling Stones, Cardiff Castle, 1973

Is there anything in the history of rock music art as magnificent as Kate Burness’s poster for the Stones’ 1973 show at Cardiff Castle, depicting a dragon with an unfortunate case of Mick Jagger-mouth?

This particular print is sadly sold out, but there are plenty more to choose from at Classic Posters, including the Doors, the Grateful Dead, Pink Floyd, Bob Dylan, the Beatles and the Who.


No Pasta No Show

Claudio Trotta, No Pasta No Show

No Pasta No Show: My 40 Years of Live Music in Italy, Barley Arts founder Claudio Trotta’s new autobiography, is part memoir by a promoter responsible for more than 15,000 live events over five decades, and part history of the Italian concert business.

Or, in the words of Rock Rebel Magazine, “the story of 40 years of live music in Italy: a gallery of unforgettable characters and their stories”. Get it for €16.92 from Amazon.


Sleep Safe tape

Fake Awake sleeping tape

At your tenth show this week? In a dingy basement surrounded by drunk students when you’d much rather be at home in bed with your wife/husband/cuddle pillow? Treat yourself to 40 winks mid-gig with these extremely convincing stick-on fake eyes.

Just £5 from Wish.com… for the agent who has everything.


Ticket Masters

Ticket Masters

Dean Budnick and Josh Baron’s Ticket Masters – subtitled The Rise of the Concert Industry and How the Public Got Scalped – chronicles the history and growth of the modern live music industry, with a particular focus on the changing, often controversial, ticketing market.

A 2011 Maclean’s review calls the book a “fascinating insider’s portrait of the music business once all of the pulsing lights, fog machines and sound equipment have been turned off”.


Musical Ruler

Dan Wieden's Musical Ruler

Wanted to be a rock star but lacked the musical talent? Never fear: Dan Wieden’s Musical Ruler offers you the chance to “become a musician in just a few hours!”

For just £5.99, the stationery maestro will guide you through “the highs, the lows and a variety of twanging thrills” of “modern ruler playing” – perfect for the failed musician in your life.


Isolate ear plugs

Flare Isolate

Starting at just £24.99, Flare Audio’s aluminium Isolate ear protectors promise to shield your ear drums from permanent hearing damage by blocking loud noise – such as live music – while still allowing you to ‘hear’ in detail through bone conduction.

Muse’s tour director, Glen Rowe, describes them as “bloody brilliant”, while legendary producer Tony Visconti (Bowie/T. Rex/Morrissey) says they’re “the best plugs I’ve ever used”. High praise indeed.


Desk Tape Series

ARCA Desk Tape Series

If you want to raise money for a worthy music-related cause this Christmas, you could do worse than ARCA’s Desk Tape Series.

ARCA advocates for road crew, which it describes as the “backbone of Australian music”, especially those in crisis. All proceeds from the sale of the recordings will be used to assist road crew: The roadie who worked on the show will receive 80% of the profit, with 20% being retained by ARCA for its charitable Roadies Fund.


Emperor Palpatine mask

Emperor Palpatine mask

What better way to celebrate ILMC’s close encounters-themed 30th anniversary than with this truly horrifying silicone mask of the most evil man in the galaxy, Star Wars’s Darth Sidious/Sheev Palpatine?

It’s yours for just £517.90 from Ireland’s Madhouse FX Studio. Just make sure you let your colleagues know if you’ve ordered one – one Sith lord in the Royal Garden Hotel is probably more than enough…


Shameless plug: IQ Magazine

IQ Magazine

Not yet a subscriber to the only essential magazine for the international live music business? There’s still time to get your order in before Christmas, making sure you keep on top of the all latest live music industry news, features and insights throughout 2018.


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