Wednesday, October 12, 2016

A Plea To The Probable Music Sell Outs

Recently, I've been finding myself explaining all too often how particular bands "older" music is better than their current. Always to justify why I like a particular group that wouldn't be typically thought highly of anymore in the eyes of avid listeners. 

In the instance of bands like The 1975, Coldplay, or Radiohead, it seems that a majority of artists and groups seemingly get less impressive as they age. 

The 1975 for example, has become increasingly more pop-ish and upbeat, which is a far-cry from the earlier days of Matty Healy, where songs like "Me", "You", "Antichrist", "102" and "Fallingforyou" were the norm. 
Now zoom forward a rough three years and you have "The Sound", "Love Me", and "UGH!". Which, only out of respect for previous tracks, I have grown to love. 

But they aren't quite the same, are they?

Then we have Radiohead; one of my all time favourite bands due to songs like "Just", "Fake Plastic Trees", and "Karma Police". 
In my personal opinion, the music has seemed to get increasingly more attention seeking. As if the weirdness isn't a real manifestation of Thom Yorkes mind anymore, but a way to sell figurative plastic to the original fans. The fans who will love it simply because they feel a subconscious loyalty to the original music. 

I guess my question is, what is this fallen-from-grace music epidemic that is plaguing so many bands? 

But I suppose I can answer it myself. It's only about the music up to a certain point. 

So dear artists; please don't change. I like you the way you are. 



Friday, September 30, 2016

Is Niall Horan Using A Voice Double?

Okay. I know that as someone who's life revolves around music, I should be used to hearing voices that can seem quite different than the physical appearance of the singer. But this is a little too strange in my eyes.

Yesterday, Niall Horan (AKA Probably the most likeable of the most irritating band since N'SYNC), released his first solo single, This Town, under the wing of prominent recording company, Capitol Records.

Of course, the only reason I found out about this was through a BuzzFeed post titled "Ring The Alarms, Niall Horan Just Released His First Solo Single", and I, being the type of person who loves to hate on everything, decided to listen to it.

As soon as the voice came in, my face contorted into sheer confusion. Now, hear me out, I have never actually listened to an entire One Direction song voluntarily, and if I have heard a whole song it was most likely in a restaurant or store, in which case, I would not be paying attention. Therefore, I'm not the first person one would ask to judge the authenticity of one of the Directioners voices.

But this seems off.

The first thing that popped into my head was that it sounded similar to Shawn Mendes. As in, if Shawn Mendes had a little brother who was signed to Capitol Records, this would be what the first solo would sound like.
It has this strange highness to it that one wouldn't expect from a 20-something man. And the way the voice sounded just didn't match his features. It looked wrong coming out of him, like how a little girl with Gerard Butlers voice would look. just... Wrong.

But that isn't the only reason I'm confused.

It occurred to me that Niall Horan is supposedly a straight-off-the-boat, Guinness drinking, potato-loving, green-white-&-gold, Irishman, with a thicker-than-molasses accent, so I decided to check for myself. You can hear his voice here.

It's odd, considering the voice I hear singing This Town sounds quite strongly American, or better yet Canadian considering my first comparison was Shawn Mendes. And by this I mean, there's no accent remotely detectable.

And coming from a girl with half of her family straight-off-the-boat from Glasgow, I like to think I detect accents fairly well.

I mean, you could argue that maybe his singing voice just sounds strongly different from his talking voice, but I would have a lot of arguments against it.

My arguments being the likes of Bono, Dave Gahan, and Morrissey; all good examples of accents coming through blatantly in their music, which can be heard in songs such as Sunday Bloody Sunday, Enjoy The Silence, and Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want, respectively.

(Yes, I am entirely aware that Dave Gahan and Morrisey are English; don't be a smartass)

So my question is: How real is Niall Horan's voice?

My theories range from extreme auto-tuning, way too much time spent in Las Vegas, or a possible voice double.

Or maybe, as a founding member of the Anti-One-Direction CorporationTM, I'm not one to have a valid opinion. How should I know?

What I can tell you for certain though, is that I don't hate the song nearly as much as *other* One Direction members singles (yeah, fuck you Zayn Malik). It's actually not bad if you close your eyes as to not acknowledge who's singing it.



Saturday, September 17, 2016

Who You Should Be Listening To: Two Door Cinema Club

It would seem that I have disappeared for more than a few days; so anyone reading quite obviously deserves an explanation.

What is it you ask?

I don't have one.

My urge to write is either stronger than my urge to breathe or it isn't there at all. I was experiencing the latter.

But here I am once again, because lets face it: I could never quit this beautiful hobby of mine. My true love in the form of what is essentially a virtual series of angry music-themed journal entires.

And today I'd like to talk about the Irish band, Two Door Cinema Club. I've been putting it off because I just love them so much.
The feeling is similar to how painters don't like people seeing their work before it's done. I wanted to be completely and fully engrossed in my Alex Trimble fascination before I wrote about it.

At first glance you'd think "eh, they don't look like much". Luckily for me, I listened to the music before actually seeing the group, which is quite honestly the absolute best way to find a new artist/band. Hearing the music without the subliminal effects of the groups appearance or public image altering your opinion is the best way to find a band because you base your opinion solely on the music.

But my favourite part of not seeing the artists first, is when after you've listened to every song you can find, you get to learn about them with an already instilled appreciation for who they are.
And a small thing I found pretty awesome about Two Door Cinema Club is that the first time they performed in a competition they got last place.

Last place.

I f*cking love it.

Do you ever notice how often you hear that this kind of thing happened to a successful artist?

Take Lauryn Hill for example, who was literally booed off stage at the Apollo when she was 13, and then proceeded to become, in my opinion, one of the greatest female rappers of all time, alongside being an irreplaceable singing icon, with songs like Killing Me Softly and Ready Or Not.

I love when there's a story of how they weren't liked at the beginning of their career, or how nobody took them seriously. It's just amazing hearing about people becoming successful even when it seemed like fate was occasionally against them.

So, further on with TDCC; They're amazing. Trimble's voice is just so vulnerable and downcast in such a relatable way that I can't get enough of it. It isn't my typical dreary-as-f*ck sad music (*cough* Cigarettes After Sex) because the music itself is upbeat and intense Alt-Rock, while it still has that pairing of a beautiful happy-sad voice that I crave like a PMS-ing teenage girl craves double chocolate cake.

So check them out and share the love with me. I'd like to know that there are other optimistic pessimists out there who enjoy this band as much as I do.



P.s. Remember, if you ever get booed off stage or come in last place, you just might be on the right path. 

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Why I Love M83

I think one of my favourite things about music is that it can convey emotions so perfectly, even without words.

Like how M83 just imposes such strong emotional gravity with limited vocals, if any. Midnight City for example, basically repeats the same line repetitively for four minutes, but you feel something. You feel more vibrant somehow.

Anthony Gonzalez (the frontman) doesn't have a blow-your-mind out-of-this-galaxy voice; albeit, what he lacks in astounding vocals, he does have in emotion and intelligence, meaning he knows how to make his voice work by making the music so powerful.

This type of music isn't something you listen to on repeat everyday, but what I love about it so much is that it's the kind of stuff you can listen to when you have no words. The music you can listen to when you are either so drained you can't speak or so bursting with emotion that you can't find the words to express it; Or it could be a matter of your thoughts. Maybe you're so over compressed with thoughts that you don't want to process anything else.

It can be something you listen to when you're so happy, you don't need words.

It's a voiceless (and in M83's case; faceless) empowerment that I think is very under appreciated. And very necessary in your life.

So in case you're feeling any of those ways today, I'd suggest adding M83 songs, Wait, Lower Your Eyelids To Die With The Sun, Midnight City, By The Kiss, and Starwaves to your playlist.

Maybe it's just the kind of music you need to create your own meaning. A meaning that other songs don't quite get right.

Whether it be happy, sad, angry, or a little bit of all three.



Saturday, September 3, 2016

Review: Justin Biebers Recent Appearance On BBC Live Lounge

I have to be honest; I went into this fully expecting to think "Hey, he's actually not terrible".

I don't know what gave me that impression, but was it valid?

No. Not at all.

Maybe it's been the ways of James Corden's Carpool Karaoke that have altered my expectations. Somehow artists tend to always do better than I expected them to with Corden, so why wouldn't I give Bieber the same benefit of the doubt?

But no, I was left with all the disappointment I was left with when he won Best New Artist at MTV for the infamous waste of musical equipment that was Baby.

One swoop over the comments should have been enough. A distinct split of two types of people: The limitless list of people born before 1995 stating how utterly depressing the performance was and the even more limitless list of young girls leaving heart-eyes emojis and tagging their "besties" alongside comments like "My babe 😍" or "Look at my future husband 😍😍".

Really? Are you deaf?

The best way I can describe it is like taking a bunch of your friends out drinking and one guy who's never sang before gets up to do karaoke and he's not terrible. Like he's trying really hard. Of course, his voice cracks a little and he's shaky as f*ck but you all clap at the end because at least he tried.

That's Justin Bieber.

(I feel like I've used this metaphor before).

Yes, of course he used the "I was nervous" card. And why shouldn't we believe him right? I mean, the guy has only been performing live in front of thousands of people at a time for seven solid years; how could we expect him to be comfortable singing in front of a camera in a lounge with the same guitarist he's had alongside him for years?

It pains me to the highest degree that someone of this limited skill level is making millions of dollars off (let's face it) just his face and photoshopped abs.

Especially when there are people like Paloma Faith, Chet Faker, or LP who are probably making less than a quarter of what he is, alongside next to not nearly enough recognition.

Justin Bieber had a decent voice when he was a kid, you know? He could play a guitar, he had a cute face, and he could sing reasonably well in his little Mickey voice; but any talent a child version of Bieber had is done and dusted and we're left with a douchey blonde pop-star, soon to be semi-forgotten until the next generations version of how we share Buzzfeed posts about N'SYNC and NKOTB.

When does talent get a chance in the light? Because I'd sure as hell like to see it before I die.

Inconsistently Yours,


P.s. Watch his performance here