Billboard Bits: Morrissey, Seal, Noise Pop Festival

Morrissey has signed a new record deal with Polydor/Decca in the U.K., according to a post from manager Merck Mercuriadis on Truetoyou.net. The deal does not cover the U.S., where Morrissey most recen

Morrissey has signed a new record deal with Polydor/Decca in the U.K., according to a post from manager Merck Mercuriadis on Truetoyou.net. The deal does not cover the U.S., where Morrissey most recently recorded for Sanctuary's revived Attack imprint.

"We will soon be scheduling new singles and albums for next year," said Mercuriadis, who previously told Billboard.com that a new greatest hits collection with some unreleased material and a new studio album would arrive in 2008.

Morrissey begins a run of European dates Jan. 16 in Clermont Ferrand, France.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.






Seal will headline the fourth annual Musicians on Call benefit, to be held Jan. 29 at New York's Hard Rock Cafe. Proceeds will benefit Musicians on Call's efforts to bring music to the bedsides of sick individuals. As part of the event, fans will be able to bid on music memorabilia through Musiciansoncall.org. Sponsorship packages can also be purchased from the site.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.






The Magnetic Fields, the Mountain Goats, Greg Dulli and Mark Lanegan's Gutter Twins project, Cursive, Fleet Foxes, Fu Manchu, Tilly & the Wall, Blitzen Trapper, Kelly Stoltz and Capgun Coup are among the first acts confirmed for the 2008 Noise Pop festival, to be held Feb. 26-March 2 throughout San Francisco.

The Magnetic Fields will play two shows at the Herbst Theatre in support of their upcoming Nonesuch album, "Distortions," while the Mountain Goats have three shows set up at three different venues.

-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.