Mercury Winner To Be Given Money To Write A Tune

THE winner of this year's Mercury Music prize will be be given some money to go away and write an actual tune, it has been confirmed.

Announcing this year's shortlist the organisers said nominees including Glasvegas, the Horrors and Kasabian will get the chance to spend £20,000 to come up with something that does not sound like a crash helmet full of bees.

Mercury judge John Gage said: "It's good to award artists who move us emotionally or impress us technically, but we felt this year's shortlist should be about highlighting what not to do."

He added: "La Roux sounds like a narky substitute teacher bashing out some Human League B Sides in a shed and couldn't hit a note with a fucking claw hammer.

"And while I am fully aware that jazz is meant to be unlistenable, were Led Bib even in the same room as each other when they recorded that album? Sweet baby Jesus.

"And then of course there's Bat For Lashes or 'Big Bag of Shit For Muppets' as they're also known."

Music fan Wayne Hayes said: "I really hope it goes to Kasabian, not because of their music obviously, but because they named themselves after the getaway driver for a gang of brutal murderers and I think that's really cool."

Along with the cheque, the winners will get 10 free music lessons and a studio session with someone who can tell the difference between 'good' and 'awful'.

Producer Tom Logan said: "For £20,000 we can bang them out an album, full of potential singles and proper choruses, and not one of them will sound like somebody urinating on a Stylophone."

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China Vows To Destroy The Moon

CHINA last night vowed to destroy the moon after a solar eclipse reduced its industrial productivity by almost one percent.

The Chinese government said it was forced to act after the six minute eclipse caused a brief pause in production at thousands of cheap toy farms as workers turned their heads skywards instead of attaching bits of plastic to other bits of plastic.

Wan Gang, the minister for science and technology, said: "Forty years after western imperialists attempted to colonise the lunar surface, we are reminded, once again, of its capacity to threaten our glorious, joyful march towards the peaceful domination of all living things."

China will deploy its 200 million quarry workers to dismantle the moon over the next nine months and use the material to build a series of enormous, terrifying skyscrapers and a 3000-mile bridge from Shanghai to Australia.

But mindful of the moon's essential influence on the Earth's angle of rotation, the Chinese have promised to replace it with a large mechanical version which can be moved around the sky to prevent future eclipses.

The new moon will be staffed permanently by 100,000 Chinese soldiers but will have the capacity to house at least one billion short, hard-working people who eat with sticks.

It will also be fitted with a gigantic laser which, China says, will be used to destroy asteroids and alter weather patterns to promote healthy crop yields.

Mr Wan added: "We promise never to use it to hold the Earth to ransom or otherwise bend it to our dastardly will.

"And in case you're wondering we will make sure there is no great big hole in the top for rebel fighters to drop a bomb into. That would be daft."