Internet 'most dangerous thing since atom bomb'

Rock has-been John Cougar Mellencamp has launched a scathing attack on digital music, declaring that the Internet had killed the music industry.

Speaking during a seminar at the US Grammy Museum, the 58-year-old singer told his audience: "I think the internet is the most dangerous thing invented since the atomic bomb. It's destroyed the music business," he said. "It's going to destroy the movie business."

While digital music was convenient, said the ageing rocker, it has come at the expense of sound quality.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee said he'd listened to The Beatles on remastered CDs, but found the same tracks unrecognisable on an iPod.

"You could tell it was those guys singing, but the warmth and quality of what the artist intended for us to hear was so vastly different," he said.

And just to show he'd been reading the papers, Mellencamp expressed his fears for the future of the good ol' US of A itself - the subject of much of his 1980s chart-bothering.

According to the wrinkly singer, America was at risk from "some smart people, the China-Russians or something" hacking into its power grid and financial system.

It's the kind of insight that makes America grate. Sorry... great.