Hola WordPress – long time no blog,
For the last few months my life has become rather hectic. Between taking over the Twitter account of the company I used to work for (I was their ‘Digital Marketing Assistant’ until Dec,) contributing their weekly ‘Weekend Top 21’ articles, as well as being invited onto a five day tech course, and being asked to speak at a business forum event –in front of 40/60 industry professionals – I’ve been being kept pretty busy. *Collapses in chair and fans face.*
If you follow me on social media, you may have also noticed that I dropped off there for a little bit too, and the simple reason for that is I’ve been on holiday. Amidst the whirlwind of freelance work and trying to find something more permanent, I took a total break from technology and, it was nice to take a step back and have some time to relax and reflect on things (and enjoy some proper sunshine!) sometimes it’s all too easy to get caught up in the rat race and forget to enjoy the here and now.
Speaking of the here and now, these reasons have all contributed to why I haven’t posted a blog in over a month. I didn’t post a ‘Tracks Of The Month’ back in March as I knew I’d be away for the end of April so I thought I’d roll it over and post one in mid-April, starting afresh in May. Though with everything I’ve had going on I didn’t get around to posting it in April either! So, I plan to rectify that right now. Here are the tracks I’ve been loving, from March – now.
Up – Olly Murs ft. Demi Lovato
I’ll be honest, I first heard this track when Murs and Lovato debuted it on the X Factor UK, and I wasn’t too crazy about it. I didn’t feel there was much chemistry between the two, which made the song fall a bit flat for me. However, I heard it a few more times in passing and it really grew on me. I also found an acoustic version online and it had the passion and emotion that I felt the X Factor performance lacked. Lovato’s powerhouse vocals and Murs’ smooth tone work together brilliantly, and while, lyrically, it’s not the most inventive, this folky/pop track is jaunty and catchy-as-hell.
Hold Back The River – James Bay
What’s not to love about this delicate, yet powerful, track from Brit-Award winning, singer-songwriter James Bay? From the gentle guitar-led opening, to the romanticism of the lyrics and the poignancy in the vocals, there is no denying that it’s beautiful. Bay’s soulful vocals are captivating and the track demonstrates his range excellently, as he powerfully hits both lower and higher notes effortlessly. I can’t stop listening to it!
Blank Space – Taylor Swift
It seems there’s no stopping Taylor Swift at the moment, everything she has put out recently is as good as – if not better – than what came before it. After the up-tempo nature of previous single Shake It Off, Blank Space is considerably more minimalist and moderate, but still has a beat you can groove to. Very cleverly written, the song see’s Swift poking fun at her ‘serial-dater’ reputation, with lyrics like: “got a long list of ex-lovers, they’ll tell you I’m insane,” her already-stellar vocals dripping with theatricality and sass. *High Five Taylor.
Afire Love – Ed Sheeran
After being given Ed Sheeran’s newest album ‘X’ for Christmas – and listening to it pretty much nonstop since – I found and fell in love with this emotional ballad. Afire Love details Sheeran’s late grandfather’s lengthy battle with dementia through his eyes, from six years old until his funeral. The piano-driven track is very poignant from the offset, documenting memories of his grandfather’s disease, and featuring a beautiful chorus detailing the love of his grandparents: “Put your open lips on mine and slowly let them shut, for they’re designed to be together oh. With your body next to mine our hearts will beat as one, and we set alight, we’re afire love.”
Cali – Rogue Re Vera
Surprise, surprise! If you’re a regular to my blog then you’ll know that I’ve written about this NY-based, alternative four-piece a fair bit since discovering them last November. Recently, vocalist, Brittany premiered an acoustic preview of new track ‘Cali’ on YouTube… and it’s pretty much a given that it was going to end up here. The guitar-led melody is beautiful and the sentimentality in the lyrics make it easy to identify with. As always, Brit’s pop-punk-esque vocals are full of emotion, complimenting, and fitting with, the instrumental backing like pieces of a puzzle. Can’t wait to hear the full-band version.
Style – Taylor Swift
Again, another entry from Taylor Swift but I couldn’t not include it. This Funk/Electro-pop track makes you want to dance from the get-go; with its funky guitar opening and synth-pop-esque 80’s vibe, it’s infectious. Swift’s vocals are full of power and conviction as always, and the higher notes at the end of each line of the chorus add even more dimension. Lyrically, the song details the blurred lines of a relationship as two people try to forget each other – a feeling that we’ve all experienced at one time or another – and so isn’t as cut and dry as some of her previous tracks. Being the third single from newest album 1989, I think it’s safe to say that Taylor Swift isn’t going out of style any time soon.
*As said, I’ve also been listening to Ed Sheeran’s ‘X’ non-stop, as well as Set It Off’s new singles from their sophomore album ‘Duality’. However, I didn’t want to review those tracks separately as there would have been 4 or 5 entries all from the same artist, so I thought it’d make more sense to do album reviews for them both. So, keep your eyes peeled – they’re coming!
If you made it this far, then to you I give the highest of high-fives! Thank you for reading.
Tech Camp: 5 days, 5 leading technology companies What’s Mine is Mine? (Intellectual property and live performance) My Summer Playlist 2015 Track of the Month: June