Tracks of the Month – September

Hi everyone,

I know that it’s been a hot minute since I’ve posted a blog; I’ve really fallen off track with my blogging schedule this year in comparison to last, but there have been a lot of changes and a lot of things going on in my life so, while I would’ve liked to have kept on course and posted more this year, it’s just unfortunately not been possible.

However, I always round up my top tracks at the end/beginning of every month so I’m back to do that again today. These are the songs that I was totally obsessed with throughout September and, if I’m being honest, still am now! 🙂

 

Demi Lovato – Sorry, Not Sorry

If you’re an OG follower of my blog, then you’ll know that I’m kind of in love with Demi Lovato, and her newest offering ‘Sorry Not Sorry’ is no exception. The lead single from her recently released new album, ‘Tell Me You Love Me’, it’s a light-hearted, sassy pop/R’n’B track. Described by Lovato herself as a song for the “haters”, it’s about taking an unapologetic look at yourself and indulging in a little self-praise – which I think rarely happens these days.

Lovato’s powerhouse vocals are stellar as always; exuding confidence and sexiness, whilst always toeing the line between being self-assured and full on bragging. It’s an empowerment anthem, perfect for a break-up of any kind and, having cracked the top 10 in multiple countries, including the UK, ‘Sorry Not Sorry’ has definitely sparked a fire among listeners – and rightfully so.

 

Jax Jones ft. Demi Lovato and Stefflon Don – Instruction

I can’t stress enough that this isn’t usually the type of song I go in for at all, so, again if you’re an OG follower of my blog and you’re staring at your screen open-mouthed, don’t worry – so am I. This reggaeton number from producer Jax Jones features vocals from both American singer-songwriter Demi Lovato, and emerging Brit rapper Stefflon Don.

Included on the deluxe edition of Lovato’s newest album ‘Tell Me You Love Me’, ‘Instruction’ opens with major samba vibes and a booming drum beat that carries throughout the song. Along with a sprinkling of synths, elements of hip-hop and a total boss attitude, it’s a whirlwind of colour, sexiness and Caribbean carnival vibes that definitely ensures its place as a summer/club banger.

 

Taylor Swift – Look What You Made Me Do

What can I say about the newest offering from pop music golden-girl Taylor Swift? The lead single from her hotly anticipated new album ‘Reputation’, is undeniably a shade anthem exploding with cutting sass. ‘Look What You Made Me Do’ is darker than anything we’ve ever heard from Swift, and see’s the songstress shedding her former public personas and giving into the perception of herself as a ‘snake’.

This can be seen in both the brooding cynicism of the lyrics, as well as the darkly creepy – yet fairly fairytale-esque – opening. It does sounds slightly like something you’d hear in a Disney movie, but I think that’s also part of its charm. I’m aware that it has divided opinions across the internet and it’s either a love it or hate it scenario, but personally? I’m really enjoying this song and I can really relate. If ‘LWYMMD’ is anything to go by, I can’t wait for an absolutely savage album.

 

Gavin DeGraw – I Don’t Wanna Be

I’m not all that sure that I haven’t reviewed this song before, as it’s been a favourite of mine for years. If you read my ‘Top #5 Best TV Show Theme-Tunes Ever’, then you’ll know that this was the inspiration behind it, and was a complete re-discovery of a forgotten love. If you were a noughties teenager then you may also remember Gavin DeGraw’s ‘I Don’t Want To Be’ as the theme-tune to American drama series ‘One Tree Hill’, and being that I laughed (and cried!) along with the show throughout my teen years and into my early 20’s, I am very familiar with this track.

However, the album version has more of a pop-rock feel, with its funky guitar-led opening and explosive, epic-sounding chorus. This, coupled with the inspiring coming-of-age lyrics, works to create something that is entirely addictive. Every time I hear the chorus I can’t help but get major nostalgic vibes, but it also makes me feel confident and unapologetic; you don’t need to constantly justify who you are or where you’re going in life, you do what’s best for you in that moment. It’s one of the songs I find comfort in, like re-visiting an old friend you haven’t seen in a while, but all the same feels like you never really left.

If you fancy checking out my ‘Top #5 Best TV Show Theme-Tunes Ever’, featuring this very song, click here.

 

Rak-Su – I’m Feeling You

I don’t usually include X Factor contestants/auditions in these posts, but for these boys I had to make an exception. After failing to impress the judges with their, rather flat, rendition of Justin Timberlake’s ‘Senorita’, head honcho Simon Cowell asked if he could hear another song from hopefuls, Rak-Su. They chose to perform original track ‘I’m Feeling You’, and everyone was definitely feeling it.

The pop/R’n’B number combined rap verses with a smooth, soulful – not to mention insanely addictive – chorus. The infectious beat instantly makes you want to dance, or at the very least have a little groove in your seat (just ask Nicole Scherzinger.) After their less than stellar start, it was like the boys came alive – as did everyone around them. One thing’s for sure, if ‘I’m Feeling You’ doesn’t get released as an official single, the X Factor bosses have missed a trick there.

 

Grace Davies – Roots

Another X Factor hopeful that I couldn’t not mention is, the insanely talented, Grace Davies. The 20 year old singer-songwriter, who has been singing on the pub scene since her mid-teens, stunned the judges with her intensely emotional original song, ‘Roots’. The piano-led ballad is a defiant message to all the nay-sayers who tried to knock her confidence over the years.

Davies’s vocals are instantly distinctive and extremely powerful throughout, with slight Amy Winehouse/Duffy elements wrapped within a sound that is entirely her own. This, along with a sprinkling of high notes, ensures the whole song is executed flawlessly. Its delicately simple arrangement really allows the vocals and lyrics to shine; it’s not dressed up in fancy production, and it doesn’t need to be, its raw honesty packs a punch without gimmicks. It’s undeniable that ‘Roots’ is a beautiful song, and I’m crossing everything that it will be released as a single, because it’s too good to be forgotten.

 

Also…

I’ve also been listening to a lot of Ed Sheeran’s newest album ‘Divide’ lately. I had planned to review the album when it dropped but I had to push it back due to illness, and then I felt like I kind of ‘missed the boat.’ However, I will be posting a full album review to coincide with when Sheeran embarks on his 2018 tour. But for now, I’ve been totally obsessed with poignant love-song ‘Perfect’, the upbeat ‘Galway Girl’, heart-break ballad ‘Happier’, and total shade track, ‘New Man’.

 

As always, thank you for reading! I hope I inspired you to give these songs a listen, if you haven’t already. If you like what I do here and want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, feel free to come and join me on:

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 🙂

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Tracks of the Month – July/August

Hi everyone, I hope you’re all well and that you made the most of the UK sunshine while it lasted. It even managed to stay dry and sunny on Bank Holiday Monday – that never happens! 😮

I know my blogging schedule has been a bit up the wall lately, and all I can say to that is that I’ve had a really busy and stressful summer. But, I’m back today to bring you my ‘Tracks of the Month’ for both July and August. Honestly, the phrase ‘Late-to-the-party’ seems to be a bit of a recurring theme throughout this month’s selections, but I thought I’d share them with you anyway 🙂 . Let’s go.

 

Niall Horan – This Town

The first solo single from ex One Direction-er Niall Horan, ‘Little Town’ is a stripped back acoustic ballad with a folk-pop vibe. This cutesy, yet sentimental love-song also comprises a very simple, soft arrangement; making it all the more poignant as it allows the romantic lyrics to be the main focus. This, coupled with the beautiful guitar-led melody, works to create something delicately impactful.

 

The Chainsmokers ft. Coldplay – Something Just like this

If you’re a fan of either of these bands, or you’ve just generally been keeping up to date with the current pop charts, you’ll know that this song was actually released way back in February. So, I hear you ask, why have I waited until now to feature it in a ‘Tracks I’m Loving’? Honestly, it was a bit of a slow burner for me; I’m not the biggest Coldplay fan so it never really struck me as something I must listen to. However, I kept hearing it in passing and eventually the chorus got stuck in my head and I decided I had to listen to it properly. Taken from the Chainsmokers debut album ‘Memories…Do Not Open’, ‘Something Just Like This’ is upbeat, totally infectious and an all-round absolute banger. As is their signature style, it’s a whirlwind of electro-pop brilliance, topped off with vocals from Coldplay frontman, Chris Martin. I’m glad I gave it a proper chance.

 

The Subways – Rock & Roll Queen

I only recently discovered this 2005 release after it featured on BBC Three’s dramatization of the death of Sophie Lancaster, ‘Murdered For Being Different’. However, seeing as it has also been included on multiple TV pieces – including noughties cult favourite ‘The OC’, as well as the trailer for 2008 Guy Ritchie Movie ‘RocknRolla’ – I can’t fathom how I’d never heard it before. ‘Rock & Roll Queen’ is a dark and gritty indie track drenched in old-school punk rock vibes, with Billy Lunn’s unique vocals giving it a distinctive edge. Boasting a great rhythm that you can’t help but groove to and an insanely addictive chorus, I can imagine it’s a massive crowd pleaser at gigs and festivals.

If you want to check out my review of ‘Murdered For Being Different’, click here.

 

Placebo – Running Up That Hill

A total re-discovery for me, after it was also featured on ‘Murdered For Being Different’, is Placebo’s eerily haunting cover of Kate Bush classic ‘Running Up That Hill’. Set to the sound of Brain Molko’s undeniably distinctive vocals, this version of the song has more of a brooding, atmospheric, almost filmic quality. I feel that it worked really well in ‘Murdered For Being Different’ due to where and how it was used; as I said in my original article about the programme: ‘The film closes with a selection of images of Maltby and Lancaster together, set to the tune of Placebo’s version of Kate Bush classic ‘Running Up That Hill’ – the lyrics making it even more poignant.’ It stayed with me long after the film had finished.

 

Linkin Park – Numb

This is another definite throwback to my teenage Emo days. Taken from Linkin Park’s 2003 full-length release ‘Meteora’, ‘Numb’ is arguably one of the rock band’s most popular, iconic songs. The instantly recognisable synth-led opening, closely followed by the crashing mix of drums and guitars, has a somewhat nostalgic feel: like re-visiting an old friend. Tragically, Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington took his own life in July, and I listened to this track a lot in the wake of his death; it’s without doubt my favourite song from the band. Bennington’s vocals are flawlessly smooth and powerfully gritty at times, and their angsty lyrics – bursting with emotion – hit even harder now. As I said in my previous blog post: ‘It’s music that gave so many people, so many ‘outsiders’, something to relate to in one way or another; voicing things that perhaps we as listeners, couldn’t. It brought the ‘outsiders’ in; helping people through their personal tribulations by sharing their own.’

If you’d like to see my previous tribute to Chester Bennington, click here.

 

As always, thank you for reading! I hope I inspired you to give these songs a listen, if you somehow haven’t heard them already. If you like what I do here and want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, feel free to come and join me on:

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🙂

Tracks of the Month – June

Hi everyone,

I’m a little late with posting June’s ‘Tracks of the Month’, and that is simply because I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to upload it. So, I thought I’d kick off this year’s ‘Jammin’ In July’ with a look back at the previous month and some of the songs that have (and still continue to) dominate my stereo.

 

Talia Mar – The Voices Are Me

Posted in honour of ‘Mental Health Awareness Month’ back in May, ‘The Voices Are Me’ is an extremely poignant piano-led track, born out of singer-songwriter Talia Mar’s desire to speak out about mental health through her YouTube channel. However, as she says in the video, she couldn’t find the right words to say so she wrote the song instead and, in my opinion, couldn’t have said it better. As someone who suffers/has suffered from anxiety, I can really relate to this track on a personal level; I feel as though some of the phrases were written straight out of my head, making it really moving to listen to. Personally, I feel that it perfectly describes how anxiety can make you feel, and I encourage everyone to really listen to the lyrics and take it in. Mar’s vocals are impeccable as always, and the contrasting quiet/loud dynamic of the verses and the chorus are a perfect fit for the vibe of the song. It also shows off her range brilliantly, the flawless quality of both the higher and lower notes creating an undeniably beautiful effect.

This song touches me so much that I can’t help but tear up (cry like a baby!) every time I hear it, and I can only commend and profusely thank Talia Mar for releasing this online. I hope that it helps people, whether that be finding comfort in dealing with your own issues or helping a friend or relative understand what someone else in their life is going through. It’s a beautiful song.

 

Tom Cochran – Life is a highway

You can thank The Summer Set’s Brian Dales for this one. If you follow him on Instagram you’ll know that he posts a daily Instagram story of himself miming along to the chorus line of this classic rock song in various settings. After a week or so of waking up and seeing said Instagram stories first thing in the morning, it’s really hard not to have it stuck in your head all day! But, with its upbeat, feel-good, summery vibe I’m not complaining.

 

Anne-Marie ft. Ed Sheeran – Ciao adios

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, is there anything that Ed Sheeran can’t make sound infinitely better? It appears not, as he comes together with R’n’B/Pop singer-songwriter Anne-Marie for this acoustic version of her song, ‘Ciao Adios’. Filmed on tour, in the dressing room before a show, the stripped-back vibe allows both the vocals and lyrics to shine even more; highlighting the pitch-perfect harmonies and Anne-Marie’s ability to switch between her lower and higher register with ease. The little looks and laughs between the pair throughout the video present an endearing quality and works to draw listeners in – and the addition of the tongue-in-cheek ‘you mug’, never fails to make me smile. 🙂

 

Charlie Puth – Attention

The lead single from Charlie Puth’s upcoming second album ‘Voice Notes’, ‘Attention’ is an addictive R’n’B/Pop song that, I imagine, a lot of people can relate to. The elements of funk in the arrangement work to create something that you can really groove to, and the lyrics are dripping with sassy vibes. Puth’s vocals are stellar as always; contrasting his main, deeper vocal line with a higher chorus and falsetto accents throughout, giving the track more depth. Full of charisma, it’s a song that you can’t help but be charmed by – and let’s face it, I’m sure everyone’s got at least one ex-whatever that they’d like to sing this to.

 

Bruno Mars – 24k Magic

I know I’m super late to the party with this one but…better late than never right? I mean come on who can’t sing-along to that chorus? The lead single from Mars’s album of the same name, 24K Magic is drenched in a funk/disco vibe set to Mars’s smooth R’n’B vocals. It’s a feel good track that doesn’t take its self too seriously, and the infectious beat also makes it impossible to sit still while listening to it – I dare you to try. C’mon everyone…put your pinky rings up the moon! 🙂

 

As always, thank you for reading! I hope I inspired you to give these songs a listen. In case you didn’t know, I’ll be posting twice a week this month as part of my ‘Jammin’ In July’ series, so if you like what I do here and want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, feel free to come and join me on:

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Tracks of the Month – March/April

Hola readers,

I hope you’re all doing really well; today I’m going to share my tracks of the month with you. The eagle-eyed among you may’ve noticed that I didn’t post one of these last month, and that is for two main reasons:

#1. Most of what I was listening to I’d already done previous reviews on, and…
#2. Let’s be honest, after its release on March 3rd, Ed Sheeran’s new album Divide was pretty much all I was listening to for weeks afterwards. (I’ve just been so busy that I haven’t had the chance to review it yet!)

There have been a few songs that fell through the cracks over the last few months though, so I’ll include them too and go from the less, to the more recent tracks.

 

Little Mix – Touch (Ed Sheeran Cover)

As part of Radio One’s Live Lounge session, man of the moment, Ed Sheeran turned his attention to Little Mix’s ‘Touch’, taken from their new album ‘Glory Days’. Released online on Feb 21st, Sheeran’s acoustic-sounding cover also includes some soulful backing vocals; the stripped back arrangement giving the track a whole different – much more raw – feel. Seriously, is there anything this man can’t make sound infinitely better?

 

Stevie P, Sketch and Jack Holding

(Also) way back in late February, Rap/rock duo Stevie P & Sketch dropped a rough phone recording of an – as yet untitled – track on Sketch’s YouTube channel ‘Sketch TV’. Along with fellow singer-songwriter Jack Holding on guitar (as well as providing backing vocals) the trio jam out the song in a really raw, acoustic kind of way – even down to Sketch getting a beat going on his shoe! As is their style, the verses comprise of back and forth rap vocals, while the chorus incorporates some beautifully haunting vocal harmonies. The stripped back arrangement gives it a certain charm whilst adding even more of a sense of honesty; it doesn’t need to hide behind complex instrumentals, it makes an impact –perhaps even more so – without.

*I know it’s not a full track or official single or anything but I did just want to give it an honourable mention as it is beautiful.

To see my reviews of Stevie & Sketch’s previous tracks, click here.

 

Katherine McNamara – Chatter

Released three years ago as part of the soundtrack to Cartoon Network original movie Contest, ‘Chatter’, is the theme tune for any school underdog, outcast or ‘weird kid’. Sung by actress Katherine McNamara (Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials, Shadowhunters), who also stars in the film, the song is almost like a helping hand letting you know that someone is listening. It’s an insanely catchy slice of pop, featuring some brilliantly encouraging lyrics (“words only hurt when you let them matter, don’t let them matter, it’s only chatter,”) and is definitely one of those songs that I wish fifteen year old me could’ve known.

 

Talia Mar – In The Day

After seeing upcoming singer-songwriter Talia Mar live, and reviewing her debut single ‘Stolen’, at the tail-end of last year I’ve been curious to hear more of her material. And, as luck would have it, the emerging talent unveiled follow-up single ‘In The Day’ online in late March. The self-produced electro-R&B track tells the story of what it’s like being the ‘other woman’ in a relationship, complete with a brooding vibe drenched in shadowy undertones – giving it an almost haunting quality. Mar’s powerhouse vocals are faultless throughout; the track really showcases her range as she glides through bold lower notes and drops in her pitch-perfect falsetto to accent certain phrases, giving it a really beautiful sound overall. If you follow her on social media at all then you’ll know that Mar is also gearing up to release her – as yet untitled – EP soon, so I’m really interested to get my hands on that and hear more of her songs. If they’re anything like the ones she’s dropped so far, the EP’s going to be absolute fire.

To see my review of Talia Mar’s debut single Stolen, click here.

 

Another song I’ve been listening to a lot is this acoustic version of ‘Eyelids’ by American trio PVRIS – or Paris to you and me. I’m not going to say too much about it as I included the full version of the song in my Jan/Feb ‘Tracks of the Month’ but, again, I did want to give it an honourable mention as I absolutely love it.

 

As always, thank you for reading! I hope I inspired you to give these songs a listen, if you haven’t already, and if you like what I do here and want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, feel free to come and join me on:

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🙂

 

Tracks of the Month: January/February

Hello everyone,

It’s that time again… yes, it’s nearing the end of the month so as is tradition around here, I’m going to take you through the songs that have dominated my stereo/ITunes/headphones over these last few weeks. If you follow my blog regularly then you may’ve noticed that I didn’t do one of these last month, so this is going to be a culmination of my January and February favourites. So, without further ado, let’s get into it.

 

Crutch – Set It Off

Taken from Set It Off’s latest studio album ‘Upside Down’, ‘Crutch’ is a pop-driven track with a gracefully explosive rock chorus. The song opens with a motif that sounds like it came straight out of a video game, with Cody Carson’s smoothly distinctive vocals not far behind, adding a soulful, almost, r’n’b tinge.

This is a definite example of the band’s sound taking on more of a lighter, pop vibe than their previous releases, however, it still retains that signature Set It Off sound. Personally, I love it. If there’s one thing I’m not too crazy on it would be the staccato video-gamey introduction, but I can look past that because the rest of the song is catchy as hell.

I’ve also been listening to some other tracks from ‘Upside Down’ including Jazzy, pop trackDiamond Girl’– which brings back a flavour of the orchestral sound from debut release ‘Cinematics’, with brass accents throughout and explosive, rock songWant’, which has more of a brooding, darker feel.

To see my review of the band’s previous album ‘Duality’, click here.

 

Lianne Kaye – Last Thing

This is getting to be quite a tradition around here isn’t it? Singer-songwriter, and YouTuber, Lianne Kaye was featured in my last ‘Tracks of the Month’ as well – and she’s back for very good reason. Kaye kicked off the year with a re-upload of her original song ‘Last Thing’, stating at the beginning of the video that the audio quality wasn’t the best in the previous one.

This new version of ‘Last Thing’ sees the ballad become very raw, consisting of just Kaye’s vocals accompanied by an electric guitar. The song opens with a beautifully delicate melody that flows into the verses. The chorus then amps up the power, both vocally and in the instrumental, with a chord pattern that lends itself to a very slight country/pop vibe. It’s an enchanting song about the to-and-fro of a turbulent break-up, of lost love and moving on – which I think everyone can relate to.
Vocally it doesn’t disappoint either, Kaye’s rich, strong tone sounding effortless and bold throughout. If you’ve read my other reviews you’ll know that I’m a big fan of Kaye’s music and, personally, I can’t wait to hear some more originals from her.

To see my review of the Kaye’s previous original song ‘You’, click here. And, to see my review of her officially released single ‘Clear’, click here.

 

You Me At Six – Take On The World

Now, I know I posted a review of You Me At Six’s newest album ‘Night People’ at the beginning of the month, but I had to include this song here because I’m absolutely in love with it. ‘Take On The World’ is a poignant ballad about being there for someone through the worst of times, letting them know that together you can take on the world.

From the first time I heard this song – and every time since – it never fails to give me goosebumps. As someone who has struggled with anxiety in the past, the lyrics and the overall message of the song really resonates with me and I know that if I ever find myself in that situation again, this is a song that I’ll put on and just imagine someone singing it to me.

I’m actually going to see You Me At Six on their upcoming April tour and, if you follow me on Twitter, you may’ve seen me say that if they play this song live there’s a massive chance I’ll be in tears. It just really hits home for me and it’s a beautiful song overall.

To see my recent review of You Me At Six’s newest studio album ‘Night People’, click here.

 

La La Land – City Of Stars

If you’ve not heard of the recently released movie ‘La La Land’, to you I ask, where have you been? The musical romantic-comedy drama – starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone – was up for a record-breaking 14 nominations at this year’s Oscars, and it seems to be all anyone can talk about.

From my Twitter feed to Facebook, I kept seeing people sharing positive reviews of the film and its music – a couple of people I follow even posted covers of this very song. So, I decided to go and see what all the fuss was about – and I wasn’t disappointed.

Fair warning, if you’re not into musicals or anything overly lovey-dovey, then you’re probably not going to like this film. But, I really enjoyed it, and this song in particular has stuck with me since I watched it. ‘City Of Stars’ has that, kind of, classic vibe of old Hollywood movies but incorporates elements that work to bring it into the modern day. That charm, coupled with a catchy rhythm and heart-warming lyrics, will see you singing it for days afterwards – trust me.

 

Ruelle – Invincible

Ruelle is an electronic/pop artist from Nashville, that I discovered whilst binge-watching the Netflix original series ‘Shadowhunters’ – based on Cassandra Clare’s popular book series ‘The Mortal Instruments’. Ruelle lends quite a few of her songs to the show, including ‘Invincible’.

The electronic track is delicately menacing, with its ‘you want a war? You don’t know what you’re asking for’ bridge, and beat-driven instrumental – like waiting for a storm to hit. However, this is lifted by Ruelle’s light, ethereal vocals, and addictively charmingly melodies which ensure the songs leave an impression  making you want to hear more. With its dramatic vibe, dark undercurrents and epic-sounding chorus, it’s not surprising that her work has been featured in multiple television shows and films, as it lends its self really well to cinematics. Currently working on her first full-length album, Ruelle is undoubtedly one to watch.

Honestly, I had such a hard time choosing which song to feature in this post; I also love the dreamy, romantic sound of ‘Storm’, the eerie but upbeat, danceable ‘Monsters’, and the swelling, epic-sounding theme to the Shadowhunters series: ‘This Is The Hunt’. (Click on each title to listen to them.)

 

Pvris – Eyelids

I’ve been meaning to check out American three-piece Pvris – or, Paris to you and me – for a while now, but this is actually another song that I discovered thanks to the ‘Shadowhunters’ Netflix series. Taken from the band’s debut album ‘White Noise’, ‘Eyelids’ is a beautifully haunting track.

Combining their electronic, pop/rock sound with a crashing, beat-heavy chorus, it works to create something dark and eerie, with Lynn Gunn’s delicately airy vocals lifting everything – also giving it a pretty and romantic vibe.

 

Another two songs I’ve been listening to a lot since their release in January, are ‘Shape Of You’ and ‘Castle On The Hill’ by Ed Sheeran, marking the end of his musical hiatus, as well as his recent Live Lounge cover of Little Mix’s ‘Touch’. Click here to see my dual review of both ‘Shape Of You’ and ‘Castle On The Hill’.

 

What songs have you been loving recently? I’m always on the hunt for new things to listen to so please feel free to let me know in a comment, and as always, thank you for reading! If you like what I do here and you want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, be sure to come and join me on:

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🙂

Tracks of the Month: December

Hello everyone,

Now, as a rule I don’t usually upload these posts until later on in the month, nor do I generally do a Tracks of the Month in December as the airwaves are usually overtaken by Christmas songs. However, today I decided to squeeze it into my blogging schedule because I’ve been listening to these tracks non-stop recently.

One is edgy and aggressive, and the other is a delicate ballad, so they’re complete polar opposites – and undeniably a far cry from the seasonal ‘We Wish You A Merry Christmas.’ 🙂

 

Bohnes – Middle Finger

After unveiling his solo project ‘Bohnes’ in 2015, ex-The Cab frontman Alex DeLeon has since dropped a couple of singles online to give audiences a glimpse of his newest venture. Premiered on YouTube almost a year ago, ‘Middle Finger’ is his second offering – and it’s a lot more ballsy than anything we’ve ever heard from him before.

Opening with an eerie two-note rhythm, the track has quite a dark, brooding theme running through it – as expected from its title. The verses carry on this simplistic accompaniment, which then allows the explosive chorus to take centre stage for maximum impact; with its swelling electro/hip-hop vibes and powerfully assertive lyrics, it hits you like a punch in the gut. DeLeon’s smooth and soulful vocals are stellar as always, further proving that he’s not one to be pigeon-holed into any genre.

I’ll be honest, I wasn’t initially too keen on this song but, from time to time, the chorus would just pop into my head, so I decided to listen to it again and it’s grown on me in a big way. If there’s one thing that I’m still not the biggest fan of, it’s the recurring ‘la la la la’ refrain that crops up throughout but, with that being said, it’s not enough to put me off the song as a whole.

It’s intense, it’s aggressive and it’s totally badass. I love it and I’m intrigued to see/hear wear Bohnes is going to take this project in the future.

 

Favourite lyrics:

“I refuse to let you make me feel like I can’t fly / not only will I soar again, I’ll own the fuckin’ sky.”

“I’m done being your slave / my generation’s had enough / and you should be afraid”

“Ain’t got time for dying, I’m too busy diving / more than just surviving, heart is beating violent.”

 

I also did a, more in-depth, review of Bohnes’ debut single ‘Guns and Roses’, back when it released in November last year. If you want to check that one out too, click here.

 

 

Lianne Kaye – You

Following the release of her single ‘Clear’ this past July, singer-songwriter – and YouTuber – Lianne Kaye recently treated her vast online following to another original song. Unlike the electronic/pop-rock vibe of her previous offering, ‘You’ brings back the acoustic ballad sound that audiences are used to hearing from the 21 year old – albeit somewhat more refined.

The stripped back accompaniment really suits the romantic nature of the song and works to create something delicate and heartfelt. It also proves that there is beauty in simplicity; it doesn’t need gimmicks, it makes an impact as is. The love-song also showcases Kaye’s distinctively bold vocals brilliantly, with a sprinkling of higher notes throughout, adding dimension to the track.

Personally, I absolutely adore Kaye’s voice and I think that this song really captures her as an artist; I can’t wait to hear more originals from her. Listen to it once and you’ll find yourself wanting to hear it to again and again (and again, and again) trust me.


Favourite lyrics:

“Standing here without a guard / ‘coz you’re a light in the dark.”

“Nowhere left to run, ‘coz I’ll be here when all is done / if you ever need to hear something true, well all the cracks in the earth lead to you.”

If you’d also like to see my, more in-depth, review of Kaye’s previous single ‘Clear’, click here.

 

Another track that I’ve been listening to a lot over the last few weeks is, singer-songwriter – and beauty/lifestyle YouTuber – Talia Mar’s debut single ‘Stolen’. I haven’t included it in this post as I uploaded a review of it earlier in the month and didn’t want to repeat myself so, if you fancy having a read of that too, click here.

 

 

As always, thank you for reading! If you like what I do here and you want to keep up to date with my upcoming posts, through the New Year and beyond, be sure to come and join me on:

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Tracks of the Month: November

Hello everyone, I hope you’re all doing very well. I feel like I say this in every one of these posts but seriously, where has this year gone?! Christmas is just around the corner and the festive music is coming out in force. But, just before we welcome that, I’m going to talk you through the songs that I haven’t been able to get enough of these last few weeks. So, without further ado, let’s get into it…

 

The Chainsmokers ft. Halsey – Closer

After enjoying moderate chat success with their singles ‘#Selfie’, ‘Roses’ and ‘Don’t Let Me Down’, The Chainsmokers dropped, arguably, their most successful song to date back in July this year. The American DJ Duo – made up of Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart – have teamed up with electro-pop singer-songwriter Halsey for ‘Closer’; a track which earned them their first number one single.

The song has an electronic/dance vibe, coupled with a synth-led chorus – lending to a very dreamy, summery feel. Taggart lends his vocals along with Halsey, and the two complement each other brilliantly. Taggart’s smooth and deep tone provides a great contrast to Halsey’s higher, powerhouse pipes, giving the track a sense of dimension, and creating a beautifully powerful effect overall.

On a personal level, this song has been my absolute jam lately. If you’re a regular reader around here, you may know that I got tattooed by Tattoo Fixers’ Sketch a few weeks ago – and this song was playing in the studio as I was getting ready to have it done. One of my first memories of the day was Sketch sitting down next to me singing along to the chorus just before we got started. So, this song will always remind me of getting tattooed that day, and how much fun it was!

 

Favourite lyrics:

“So, baby, pull me closer / in the backseat of your rover.”

 

 

Bring Me The Horizon – Oh No

Again, if you’ve read my blog before, then you may remember that I did a full album review of Bring Me The Horizon’s ‘That’s The Spirit’ at the beginning of the year. However, this is another song that will always remind me of when I got tattooed by Sketch recently, so I couldn’t not include it. My friend and I were sat in the front of the studio while Sketch was in the back drawing up the design and, all of a sudden, this song just started blaring out from the other room. Naturally, we had a bit of a sing along while we were waiting!

As I said in my previous review:

‘Album closer ‘Oh No’ brings back the dance-pop musicality, while contrastingly highlighting the darker subject of seeing the pitfalls of addiction through sober eyes. Overall ‘That’s The Spirit’ has quite a dark theme, highlighting internal struggle and showing a sense of emotional vulnerability. However, there are pockets of positivity in the form of empowering, sing-along choruses – and its Sykes spitting the lyrics with such an aggressive passion that really drives it home.’

BMTH also released the official video for the song this month, and a rather bizarre one at that – if anyone knows what the weird trumpet playing thing is, please let me know!

Click here to read the full album review. 🙂

 

Favourite Lyrics:

“No we’re not on the level, you’re just off your face.”

“Don’t call it a party cause it never stops / now one is too many but it’s never enough.”

“You’re holding onto heaven but you’re hanging by a thread.”

 

 

Hinder – Lips of an Angel

This throwback of a song has been a major rediscovery for me this month. Released way back in 2009, ‘Lips Of An Angel’ was Hinder’s first major hit, reaching number one in multiple countries, and it’s not hard to figure out why.

Detailing the story of getting a phone-call from the ex that you never really got over, the rock ballad is captivating from beginning to end. Set to the sound of, ex-vocalist, Austin Winkler’s gruff and husky tone – with a sprinkling of higher notes during the chorus – the whole thing has a very brooding, poignant feel. I come back to this song every now and then, and every time I remember why I love it.

I stumbled across this track when I was flicking through the music channels back in the day, and I’m so glad I did because simply put, it’s flawless.

 

Favourite lyrics:

“Girl you make it hard to be faithful with the lips of an angel”

“My girl’s in the next room, Sometimes I wish she was you / I guess we never really moved on”

 

 

Set It Off – Something New 

Taken from Set It Off’s recently released third studio album ‘Upside Down’, ‘Something New’ marks the start of a new chapter for the band – as the title would suggest. Opening with a funky guitar-led pattern, and a super fun gang vocal refrain, the track is undeniably more pop-based than previous releases.

Sophomore offering ‘Duality’ showed the beginning of a transition into something more pop-based in certain numbers, but retained a darker, brooding vibe overall. Now, gone is the darkness and in its place is something full of optimism and light, set to Cody Carson’s smooth, distinctive vocals.

It’s jaunty, fun and will no doubt whip audiences into a frenzy – it always puts a smile on my face and makes me want to sing along. So, go on, “turn up the sound to Something New” – what’re you waiting for?


*
Released on October 7th, Set It Off’s newest album ‘Upside Down’ is now available to download through ITunes.

Click here to check out my review of the band’s previous album ‘Duality.’

 

Favourite lyrics:

“And if there’s one thing in my life, that I’ve been fighting day and night, well it’s the fear of changing nothing / So when I open up my eyes, and shake that worry from my mind, I checked the clock and it’s still running.”

“I think it, I say it, I write it, erase it, and break my back so I don’t let you down.”

 

Brit rockers You Me At Six have made an explosive comeback to the scene recently after going into hibernation while writing their hotly anticipated fifth album. They’ve dropped a few videos for various tracks from the upcoming new release, including title track ‘Night People‘, ‘Plus One’, ‘Give‘ and ‘Swear.’ I’ve been listening a lot to ‘Give’ and ‘Swear’ in particular, but I thought rather than write mini-reviews of both tracks, I’d just do a full album review when it’s released in January. 🙂

 

 

As always thank you for reading. I’ve been (trying to) blog every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday during November as its ‘National Blog Posting Month’. To see all the the uploads throughout this month, click here.

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