Morrissey signs for Sanctuary

Singer expected to find, develop new talent

NEW YORK — Alternative-rock mainstay and former Smiths frontman Morrissey has inked a recording deal with U.K. music firm Sanctuary Group that includes a planned revival of the storied reggae imprint Attack Records.

Under the terms of the pact, Attack will be distributed by BMG in the U.S., by Pinnacle in the U.K. and by Sanctuary’s various distrib partners elsewhere in the world. Label will release Morrissey’s first record of new material since 1997’s “Maladjusted” (Polygram).

Attack, once part of the Trojan Records family (itself owned by Sanctuary), has released albums from such reggae greats as Gregory Isaacs, Big Youth, the Pioneers and I Roy.

In addition to having creative authority over the Attack, Morrissey is expected to sign and develop new talent at the label.

“Early on in our discussions, Morrissey proved himself to be a connoisseur of our Trojan Records catalog and expressed an interest in using the Attack label for the release of his records, much as he did the HMV label when he was with EMI,” said Sanctuary U.S. chief exec Merck Mercuriadis.

Sanctuary is home to such artists as the Libertines, the Strokes, Spiritualized and the Pet Shop Boys in various territories. Company also operates a massive concert-promotion and management operation in the U.K. and abroad.

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