July 24, 2002

Sweden's latest rock sensation THE HIVES have signed a long-term worldwide recording deal with Universal Music U.K., Billboard Bulletin reports. The news comes despite the band's having signed a North American deal in March with Warner Bros. Records and having one album left on a three-album deal with Burning Heart/Epitaph, signed in 1998.

A Warner spokesperson would not comment. Peter Ahlqvist, managing director of Orebro, Sweden's Burning Heart (51% owned by Epitaph),declined to comment but is "exploring legal options."

The group is riding high thanks to the success of the single "Hate To Say I Told You So", which is at a new peak of No. 8 on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart in its 10th week. An accompanying video clip the 26th most-played on MTV, according to Nielsen Broadcast Data Systems. The album Veni Vidi Vicious is No. 71 on The Billboard 200 and has sold 161,000 copies in the U.S., according to SoundScan.

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