Indie pop label Fortuna POP! is to shutter.

The imprint was formed in 1995 by Sean Price, and has steadfastly flown the flag for indie pop and other awkward post-punk sounds for two decades.

Fashions come and go, but Fortuna POP! really seemed to stand for something – whether it was a sound, or a broader ethos, the label has some steadfast fans, many of whom have taken to social media to express their sorrow.

The news was delivered in typically classy fashion – a full page statement in the programme for this weekend's Indietracks festival.

We're sad to see 'em go! Check out a full interview with Sean Price conducted during the label's 15th birthday celebrations HERE.

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Dancehall star Beenie Man has been forced to pull his set at Drake's OVO Sound festival in Toronto after being diagnosed with Zika virus.

The Jamaican performer was denied a Canadian visa after being diagnosed with the illness, and posted a note to disappointed fans.

Also claiming to be suffering from Dengue Fever, Beenie Man put his trust in Haile Selassie and wrote: “Wi a hol firm still”.

Check it out below.

 

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Jah know…dah week ya deal wid me a way!! No visa fi mi Canada show (I apologize again to my fans in case you haven't seen the press release) Zika Virus hol' mi The same Zika mosquito gi mi dengue. Blood test, injections, pills. Wi a hol firm still. Selassie a guide I n I right through so once mi have life me a give thanks. #Unstoppable

A photo posted by KingBeenieMan (@kingbeenieman) on

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If you are passing Old Street roundabout in East London on Saturday the rumble of house and techno music in the background is being generated by The Little Festival. The event returns this weekend taking over two venues for daytime rave on the roundabout and then a party into the early hours
 
After four sell out shows already this year the gang behind the event are gathering 1000 likeminded people to push the boundaries once more, bringing that festival feeling to unique urban environments. Expect amazing music, festival production and award winning bites to eat. Head down on Saturday daytime from 4pm-11pm for the free open air party at Old Street Roundabout, then skip across to the evening event at Hoxton Basement running until 6am. Don't forget to break out your dancing shoes!
 
DJs at the event include Alex Smith, Dan Gayle, Jarmo, Cassie, PMTR and more.
 
Grab tickets here and find more information on the event.
 
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John Varvatos has always had a close relationship with the music world. Perhaps it's that idea of kindred spirits – mavericks lingering on the outside, inspired by, but slightly at odds with, the world around them.

Back in 2005 the designer opened a flurry of collaborations with musicians, including performance clips and photography – something that continues to this day. For the first time, though, John Varvatos will expand on that trademark black and white palette for a special partnership with silken-voiced Irish singer Hozier.

Speaking to Clash, Hozier reveals that he was absolutely blown away by the offer to work with the designer. “It's been really, really cool. He's a very interesting dude, I've got to say. He's a man of many worlds. He's crazy about music, obviously; he's incredibly well versed with anything to do with rock 'n' roll. It was good to just talk to him. Thrilled to be a part of it – thrilled to be asked, to be honest.”

“As part of his campaigns for the clothes he gets a lot of musicians involved,” he continues. “The recent one was Gary Clark Jr. and Jimmy Page. And the likes of Iggy Pop. It's cool to be among those names. That's how big they are, I suppose, that guys like that want to be involved.”

For his part, Hozier is hardly an unknown quantity. The singer's self-titled debut – an inspired fusion of blues, gospel, country and his own Irish heritage – has sold more than one million copies worldwide, a startling figure for such a humble, self-effacing talent. Invited to meet with John Varvatos, he was eager to step out-with his comfort zone as much as possible.

“His office is based in the Lower East Side, so a lot of it was getting there, getting to meet that team, and finding what they were thinking of. And I think it's evolved with the clothes line, with his upcoming Autumn/Winter line. He had some great ideas, and has done some great work in the past. A lot of it was just trusting them, trusting his vision, and coming with it. And I suppose being a part of it.”

Hozier took part in a number of shoots, including a special live performance of his stand-out, soulful belter 'To Be Alone' directed by the phenomenal visual artist Danny clinch. “It's not quite a music video, it's like a live session, I suppose,” the singer explains. “We were shooting this thing in a place in New Jersey, which I think it's called the Art Factory. Some ancient, ancient building that was just built into a mountain, so there's a lot of interesting things to spot.”

He admits, though, that music videos offer some tricky tests. “A lot of artists find the music video thing really, really difficult. Because you're dealing with a medium where you feel like you're working. It's tricky. You're coming at it from a point of view where you wrote a song, and then trying to do something that embodies that song in video.”

“But over time, I've learned a lot. It's outside of your field and it can be quite rewarding to just take a step back and enjoy the work of somebody who has those skills, who has that talent.”

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It seems that the entire experience of working with John Varvatos has left an indelible stamp on Hozier's outlook, on his approach to visual mediums – in fact, he could even be tempted to do the whole thing over again. “It's something I'll look into when it comes,” he says. “For the moment, it was a great experience, it was great to do it. It's an interesting thing to see somebody who's so good at what they do, just do what they do… and to get to enjoy that. He's a total dude. And it's nice to be among the roster of artists he's worked with. I'll have to see, but yeah – you never know.”

For now, though, the singer is beginning to sketch out plans for his second album. After such a long time on the road, he explains, it will be a nice feeling to close the studio door and simply focus on his artistry. “A lot of ideas come and go, so I have to catch 'em, put 'em down, and keep 'em for later. But, for me, to turn those ideas into songs takes a bit of time, and it takes space. Space away from people.”

“But you're never alone when you're on tour, you're living in the pockets of umpteen other people,” he says. “And you're always doing something, you're always being pulled one way or another, so it's hard to find that space, to create that space, where you can write songs. Over the next few months I'm going to take some time out and work on the album.”

A Wicklow boy, he believes a return to the Irish countryside is necessary to add extra fire to those studio sessions. “I thought about moving to a city, but I work well in a quiet space and I don't want to be too distracted,” he explains. “Ireland is still home, for the moment. And I've got a lot of figuring out to do, so I may as well go home. It's all good. I'm looking forward to re-connecting.”

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Viola Beach were just getting started on their music journey when their voices were suddenly silenced.

The group died tragically earlier this year, sparking a wave of mourning that seemed to include every star in the night sky.

A self-titled album of demo recordings, full studio sessions and more has been pieced together by the band's family, with 'Viola Beach' acting as a fine summation of all they had achieved in that short time.

'Boys That Sing' was already their calling card, and it has now received a cute, if poignant, animated video.

Dive in below.

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De La Soul always sought to go that little bit deeper.

One of the most original and idiosyncratic acts to emerge from hip-hop's golden age, the group's playful lyricism was allied to a magpie-like ability to search out the perfect sample.

Now they've decided to sample themselves. Yep, frustrated with the constrictions placed on artists with copyright laws, new album 'And The Anonymous Nobody' was built from music created entirely by the group themselves.

De La Soul built up an enormous sample bank, piecing this together to create the beats for 'And The Anonymous Nobody'.

Set to drop shortly, the hip-hop icons recently took part in an 'In Conversation' style event at Sonos Studio in London.

Talking frankly and lucidly about their career, the way music has progressed, and the working methods behind their fascinating new album, it made for involving, intriguing listening.

Clash has obtained the full audio from the event – tune in below.

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The anomaly in the High Focus box of crackerjacks makes the ever-accelerating UK imprint as savvy as it is consistent and loud. Ed Scissor and Lamplighter are the solemn servants savouring the bitter chill of lost hip-hop, championing the outsider, huddling around a waning fire while hearts pull downwards.

Scissor’s continued withdrawal from when he was Edward Scissortongue on ‘Better.Luck.Next.Life’ (though Mr Scissortongue is still summoned on ‘AFK’), is a mixture of prophet, maverick bard and disaffected post-fallout statistic, seen through eyes that are either bloodshot or receiving the Clockwork Orange treatment. Unnervingly soothing, he posts an eloquence of wordplay and observation, poetic without making a coffee shop slam out of it.

Lamplighter’s slow burning folk with a concealed barb and electronic frequencies collected from off course satellites, keeps vigils by candlelight and reads last rites in a spirited gloom. The conducting of instruments with key changes in all the right places, is equal parts sonorous and austere. The mediums of cold shoulders, withering looks and silent treatments are damaging weapons, and the acoustic plucks of the producer on the title track and ‘Dust Don’t Lay’ deadpan as much as the emcee.

Where a lot will be made of the album’s perceived negativity and wallowing measured from ‘Chavassian Striking Distance’, the expressionless conveyance makes the performance weirdly more versatile. It can be all things for all people: from a live aspect, you can reasonably imagine words being sung back to the protagonists as much as the audience stays rapt. In a parallel universe fusing Ghostpoet, Atmosphere, Scroobius Pip and Maxi Jazz (and other acts like 2econd Class Citizen/FBCFabric & Reindeer), any questions as to whether the pair are missing the High Focus point of rowdy hip-hop need to check again. Topics about relationships and drug use are common, as is the overlapping of the two, and more’s the point, ‘Tell Them It’s Winter’ rarely gives a fuck in its own unique way.

8/10

Words: Matt Oliver

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An official Prince tribute concert will take place in Minneapolis on October 13th.

The show will be organised by the iconic performer's family, and will utilise the city's U.S. Bank Stadium.

Performers have yet to be confirmed, but we'd imagine there's a very long line of talented people eager to salute the Purple One.

Tickets for the show go on sale next month.

Prince's family released a short statement, which runs as follows: “We are excited for the opportunity to bring everyone together for the official family celebration of Prince's life, music and legacy, and there is no better place to do it than his hometown of Minneapolis. We are honored by the artists who will pay tribute and grateful to those that have worked so hard to make this celebration possible.”

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In case you missed it, Beyond The Wizard's Sleeve released their debut album 'The Soft Bounce' recently and it was inspiring, lucid, mind-expanding fare.

Psychedelic without falling into any of the cliches, Erol Alkan and Richard Norris included heavyweight electronics in their sonic palette.

Two new remixes have been commissioned, with BTU (Babe Terror and U) and Daniel Avery taking part.

Daniel Avery steers 'The Soft Bounce' in drifting, airy climes, his powerfully clipped electronics nodding at proto-techno while leaving plenty of room for expansive suggestion.

It's all rather other-worldly… check it out now.

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Adam F is one of the foremost voices in drum 'n' bass, someone who has adapted their own unique style to passing innovations.

One of the ways that he has achieved this is by seeking out new talent – talent such as rising producer Kokiri.

Together, the pair have constructed 'Harmony', a subtle but effective system smasher that pairs relentless breaks against some wrecking crew electronics – oh, and Rae's ineffable vocals on top.

Out tomorrow (July 29th) via Nothing Else Matters, the track unites generations around a common outlook – bass innovation, delivered on a large scale.

Check it out now.

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