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Check out what i’m listening to this August (2022)
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We’re No Heroes – Youth – Single Review

  We’re No Heroes. What a name. What a statement. Their name on its own is compelling, their music? Even better. 
  We’re No Heroes have released their long and anticipated single ‘Youth’. I managed to nab a sneaky peak just before the release, and man was it good! This trio of lads are adding to my strong belief that Wales is the underrated Liverpool, as it appears to be the home to many talented musicians, with these guys currently being based in Cardiff. Now am digging this song for many reasons, from its funky 80’s influence, right down to the well pieced together dynamics of the song. And below im gonna nit pick at the song to explain exactly why this song is worth the listen and why you wont be able to deny the movements. 
   This song is a very well pieced together sample of amazing music. Featuring many different key components, that once teamed up creates an incredible sound. ‘Youth’ is definitely a song worth listening too. So what is that sound that We’re No Heroes have made here? Well its only an 80’s Inspo, Indie, Funk Rock sound of course! 
  The song starts with guitar and drums. The guitar is subtle, yet introduces some enchanting chord strums that are so gentle you would almost miss them. Put paired with lightish drums, played similar to that of The Kooks, the beat emphasises the beauty behind the strums. When the guitars pick up so do the drums, and with the addition of vocals and bass added, the layering of the song begins to become apparent.
  Now creating that 80’s inspo feeling is all down to the guitar. The electronic twang of the lead guitar alongside the tunes its producing really plays on the 80’s inspo. Each strum is heard with the guitar however its not as clear as other genres may be, as you need the metallic twang that is also heard, to draw in the rock side of things too. The tune itself that is played throughout the majority of the song is so catchy, that I have spent the last 3 days humming it to myself sat at my desk at work. 
  The bass in this song is incredible. It is well heard, beautifully strummed and utterly draws that funky vibe into the song. With the depth bass provides on its own, this aspect of the music has me in amazement. The bass plays alongside the tune throughout the track providing a support mechanism. However if you strip the lead guitar out of the song, the bass will provide so much of the tune itself, that all you would notice is that the pitch of the tune has changed. Being able to hear each strum so clearly, also allows for the bass to be truly appreciated, as you are educated into the bassists talent. 
  Heading back to the drums, the beats within this track as so executed that there is no mistake or missed beat present. The drums sound so effortless that I cant help but imagine the drummer casually sat there, hitting the beats on each section of the kit in such a relaxed and calm manner that he could almost be asleep. They just sound so great and with the technique and sound similar to that of The Kooks this pulls the Indie genre in nicely. 
  Now vocals! I love a good vocal and some banging lyrics, however I feel the lyrics are so at one with the song it feels wrong talking about them. So I will leave the lyrics there and just say they are quirky and amazing. The vocals themselves sound wise are just wow! With different pitches, projections and note lengths being toyed with, the vocals themselves have strong aspects to them, that once thrown together have created this wonderful creative flow. Backing vocals are timid yet still manage to create a semi echo, which with the chorus completely draws me in more as it feels like it makes specific phrases importance more known. The vocals can only be compared to Foals, but feature more pitch adjustment, again bringing in that indie vibe.
  ‘Youth’ is a belter of a song! The different aspects pieced together effortlessly, yet strategically has ensured the creation of an incredible piece! We’re No Heroes have really out down themselves, especially with combining so many genres together and ensuring that the audience is captivated and feels the music. This song is one of those songs where you just feel the music, you sway along. Your head rolls gently from side to side in a wave motion with your body. The lyrics click something in your brain and you’re off. Connecting, feeling and experiencing every drum beat/guitar strum/vocal pitch. Funk Rock meets indie meets 80’s inspo. Music at its greatest. Raw, new and fresh. 
 

As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
 
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below. 
 
Thank you,
 
Leanne xo

"But he'll never stay, they never do"

  I absolutely love Halsey at the moment, from her beautifully unique voice to her bold fashion and her even bolder lyrics. But the song that has really grabbed my attention is ‘Eyes Closed’. ‘Eyes Closed’ has a great chilled vibe to it yet when you strip it down it is a very complex song. 
  Focusing first on the music itself ‘Eyes Closed’, features a combination of vocals, guitars, bass, mixers and keyboards, that are all layered with avoidance of overlaying being achieved greatly. The sound that all these instruments produces is that of a soft, alternative R&B track similar to the sound we hear from The Weeknd’s – Trilogy album. This is accomplished by the soft electric guitar riffs, deep bass chords, and the soft backing electronics produced by the mixer/keyboards. By incorporating electric guitar into this song rather than acoustic, the song has a harshness added to it, which is very subtle but adds flavour. Bass is a key component within this track as you hear it clearly throughout and it supplies the beat that is usually produced by drums. This also builds the depth of the song as bass is naturally deep, but by using very cleverly selected chords the bass sounds even deeper.
On its own the music would make a great instrumental piece, as it features so many aspects. There is character too, in terms of it has feeling to it, it has depth and it makes you move. What emphases this feeling within the song is the vocals themselves. Halsey has a beautiful voice that is both soft and powerful. She has the ability to utilise her vocal capacity by messing with different pitches, notes and the use of different projections throughout. This piece all in all musically is phenomenal; there is nothing about it that just doesn’t work. The construction and foundation of it all is immaculate. 
  Secondly and finally let’s talk about the lyrics. As always this is completely my own opinion and may even be miles off what Halsey wrote it about, but the story I feel and sense below really works and connects well with the lyrics and audience…
  For me, the lyrics tell a story of a break up from a relationship so tormenting that it results in new relations being impacted and having almost troublesome thoughts. This is all brought to light by some very key aspects within the lyrics, which I will highlight below.
The song starts with the simplest verse about knowing the game, and how to play the game. It then breaks into the powerful, emotion driven chorus which lets you in on the true effect of the torment. The second verse however, really breaks it down for you. Featuring lines like ‘would’ve gave it all for you’ and ‘so tell me where I went wrong’, you are enlighten to the heartbreak and confusion that is still so raw. But then hidden away backing vocals sing ‘my lover, my liar’ which will make you as the listener, feel the pain that this song holds and ask the biggest question ever.
The question right there for you is, why are you asking what you did wrong, when you know they lied? This unfortunately is something that many will be asked during their life when in this kind of situation, where your mind has been messed with. This verse maybe chunkier than the first, but it is still short and sweet and flows straight into that chorus again. After this second introduction to the chorus we are greeted by the most powerful, two-lined verse ever! This verse literally is filled with heart-breaking truth, but also pure raw emotion. And it is this verse I think is what connects to so many people out there. 
“They don’t realise that I’m thinking about you
it’s nothing new, it’s nothing new”
  And reality is, that most people that go through a breakup that leaves them questioning themselves constantly, and leaves them broken for a long time, will experience this. They will be with a new lover, whether long-term or short, and will be completely entangled in thoughts of the one that caused the pain, that caused the strains in their trust/life/confidence/faith. This is a proper pain filled song! And regardless of whether Halsey intended this song to be interpreted this way, that’s the connection and story I find. And truthfully that’s the beauty of music; it doesn’t always mean the same thing to one person as it does another, it can be connected to what they feel and how they feel. The story they feel maybe their own story, or it may be a story they’ve witnessed. What I love more is that the song itself is so well produced, constructed and elaborate, that despite being able to be connected to some heavy raw emotions it’s got an edge to it. 
Halsey is definitely smashing the music world at the moment, which I’m in love with every second, and this song definitely showcases it! I hope she tours the UK as I will definitely be on it for some ticket purchasing. She’s got the edge, drive and music, but she’s also got the passion which is a very key aspect to have in the music industry especially this day and age.





As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
 
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below. 
 
Thank you,
 
Leanne xo

Album Review #4

  There is this band that I’ve listened to for as long as I can remember, and I have over played their albums and cat-scream sung over every song at least 400 times. And yet I found myself being a bit standoffish with their latest album. Why? Because it is a sound that is not quite them, yet now I’ve let go and actually listened to it, it is so them! Now to cut to the chase, this band is Paramore. I’ve been to a gig and caught them at festivals, and I have always loved them. I had red hair because I love red hair, but also because Hayley had red hair. I still have the hoodie that was purchased from the gig I went to back in 2009 and I was heartbroken when I threw my t-shirt away, that’s how long this love affair with Paramore’s music has gone on for. They have been a big part of my life, they have been my down time music, my blocking the world out music and they have also been my over the moon happy music. Paramore have always managed to be there for me musically.
  So when their new album ‘After Laughter’ saw its first public release of Hard Times coming out, I was filled with anticipation. And well when it came to my ear, I was upset. Paramore’s rock vibe was not apparent within this track, this wasn’t Paramore. This wasn’t my Paramore that I have loved all these years! You see their new album ‘After Laughter’ see’s the band experimenting and channelling some 80’s vibes into their songs, all combined with some pretty raw/real life lyrics. But then the song got stuck in my head and I just had to sit myself down, suck it up and listen to it and well… There it was! My Paramore. The quirky lyrics (that often are quite raw), the riffs, the drums and the connection. It was Paramore, but what seems to be Paramore coming of age.
  Finally I stopped being a stubborn little child and realised if I’m now in my early 20’s and I’ve been listening to Paramore for around 10 years, then they are going to change. They are going to experiment, that’s what music is after all. After that telling off/realisation I plonked my butt on my bed, put some headphones on and played the album. Boy, was that the best thing I did that week! The 13 song track list is phenomenal, filled with some great music and writing and well I’m fully embracing those 80’s vibes. Below I’ve listed my favourites off the album and what I thought whilst listening to them, but seriously compiling this list was hard! It’s such a great album.
  • Told You So – The third track on the album, this song is packed with great vocals, quirky tunes and sassy lyrics. It’s that type of song you can’t help but sway along to, and you can’t help but sing along too either. I think many can agree when someone says to you “I told you so” you just feel bitter, maybe even flick a glare their way (I know you know), and this song captures that perfectly with the lyrics. What really love about this song though is the use of the bass and guitar throughout. They are very clearly heard and actually hold more of the beat than you think. The drums throughout are great, but they appear to incorporate more of an additional structure to the tune that’s within the track rather than being the heartbeat of the song.
  • Fake Happy – This song is just unreal! It’s the fifth track on the album, and starts off so mellow and low, with soft lyrics and acoustic guitar strumming slowly building the song up which then, just stops. Out of nowhere, the funkiness builds! This song has a great contrast, as the tune is quite upbeat and happy, but the lyrics are deep and very meaningful. For me this is a clever touch on mental health. It may not be, but that’s the connection I’ve put with this song. There are people out there that will feel this way at some point for whatever reason, and this form of recognition is great. It gets it out there and helps to break down the stigma. I love it. But it being a banger of a song helps too. As I said it may not be about mental health, but if I can make the connection (and ain’t the sharpest tool in the shed) then many others may too. Which is how this stigma removal could benefit from this song. With lyrics like “I bet that everybody here is just as insincere” and “Oh please, I bet that everybody here is fake happy too”, helps to provide proof that you aren’t alone in this world, adding a support mechanism.
  • Idle Worship – The slightly more heavier sounding track with hints of a very young Paramore filtered within, ‘Idle Worship’ is the tenth track on the album and completely love it! This song is oozing with sass, its oozing with a powerful vibe, and brimming with some great music. The vocals in this song are amazing, with different pitches and projection, Hayley’s vocals definitely shows how talented she is within this song. The drums are equally as versatile within this song as they are either loud, yet tame beats or fast intricate ones. The guitar is just bang on! And exactly what I wanted to hear in this one, as it incorporates the new sound with hints of Paramore’s slightly older sound from back when they were throwing bangers like ‘Decoy’ out. I would like to point out that although this song isn’t as rock sounding as ‘Decoy’, it has a hint of that vibe which has been very cleverly mellowed out and incorporated into this new 80’s vibe. ‘Idle Worship’ is that song that just blast out of my car speakers, and sing my heart out to! To the point where if you are unfortunate enough to be sat next to me at the traffic lights, I am probably going to be throwing some sassy (at least think so) dance moves at the red light, followed with some pretty horrific singing. That’s how great a song this is.
  • Rose-Coloured Boy – The second track on the album ‘Rose-Coloured Boy’ is another great song showcasing this new 80’s inspo sound, that Paramore are playing with at the moment. With a quirky backing vocal that sounds chanty, the sound has some serious 80’s elements within it including some synth. I can’t help but feel this is a song about someone who is very into believing on showing that they have no problems, that there are no problems out there, that there is no excuse for being sad. And I feel this song just hits that feeling you get from that, right on the head. With lyrics like ‘we can’t all be like you, I wish we were all rose-coloured too’ and ‘boy you ain’t ever seen my mind’, you can feel the emotion and the slight annoyance being portrayed perfectly. Again I could be completed wrong, but just feel it is so cleverly done and it just fits so well.
  • Hard Times – And last but not least, the first track on the album and the first release/introduction to the new sound ‘Hard Times’ is definitely within my top, top 3 favs off this album. From the video, to the music, to the lyrics, to the new vibe, I just love it! This is another one that feel is touching on mental health/dealing with crappy times, yet in a very grown up way. The lyrics seem to come from both aspects of that feeling. With the chorus sounding like that thing that’s ruining your mood/day/month yet, the verses seem to be more centralised round the affected person and how they are feeling. Again a beautiful contrast with the funky, upbeat sound of the music and vocals, mixed together with the emotional filled lyrics. This track has great use of that 80’s inspo with synth and a killer techno sounding tune that sticks in your head for days. My favourite thing about this song is the guitar, its funky, its filled with upbeat happy chords yet isn’t overloaded. Both lead and rhythm riffs sound great within this piece, and the techniques used just add to the quirky beat yet showcase what Taylor can do with his guitar. Hard Times is a smashing first release and first track of the album.
  What I really like about this album is that it feels really realistic, and you can connect to it. To me, this album appears to be Paramore as a group growing up and maturing as they get older. As well as them having to face/deal with issues within real life. Perfect example of this is ‘Fake Happy’; this song to me (as I’ve mentioned above) just screams the real life “problem” of mental health/illness battles, which many people can and will relate to. Which I think is important here, because when music speaks to you, its a better experience overall, as you not only hear the music but you feel the music. You appreciate each guitar strum, each chord, each drum beat, each vocal pitch and each synth note. Every single fine detail is heard, felt, and lived within music when it can be relate-able or even connect between its listener and itself.
  All in all its a great album and now that I’ve got over the initial temper tantrum (because I’m stubborn), I 100% recommend this album and can ensure you will enjoy it!


 
As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
 
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below. 
 
Thank you,
 
Leanne xo

Hello. It’s me… The creator of Music and What Not

  So a little bit later on in the year it’s been two years since Music and What Not became thing. Over those two years there’s been some guest posts, some editing help and the introduction to What Not posts, building the blog up to more than just a Music blog and fitting the name more. But something I haven’t really done is truly introduce myself or what Music and What Not is here for. So I thought why not do it now!
So here we go, the mask is being removed! 
  My names Leanne and I live in Birmingham in the United Kingdom. I am the Creator and Writer for the blog Music and What Not and now the one and only Editor (scary I know). I started the blog back in 2015 after realising how much music affects my life, how passionate I am towards it and well I missed my old blog and felt I had a lot more potential now I’ve grown and matured. I will be the first to admit I’ve had some help on the way, and after a serious ego boost I realised I am capable of producing some amazing things. In 2016 I made the decision to take on the What Not side of the blog and dabbled with posts that aren’t music related, but things that interest me and i’m still passionate about. I also got to do my first ever sponsored blog post and boy was it amazing to do! So I can honestly say you can expect a lot more from me over then next few years as I bring more music posts, definitely some more What Not posts about all things from books, films, tattoos and art. 

  Now that’s the blog side of things, here’s the nitty gritty…
… My original welcome/about me post was vary minimal but I can confirm that I do still love animals, Tim Burton and I still would love a Raccoon! Now I wish I could say I was lying when I said this next sentence, but honestly I’m not and truthfully I love it! I am a massive nerd. I studied science at college for three years, two of those years being Forensic Science with hints of Medical Science. I was prepping to go to University to study Radiotherapy when I realised I’m still an absolutely baby and didn’t want to leave home after being declined by the University of my dreams (okay maybe that’s a bit dramatic, I didn’t really dream of University). Before I found Science I wanted to be in the Military, but with my lack of understanding of Physics I went on to what I understood best, Chemistry and Biology, hence the college studies. So from deciding University was a no no, I searched endlessly for jobs and apprentices which resulted in applying for an Apprenticeship in Business that I was adamant was not for me and I was never going to work in an office. I got that job and its safe to say that was the making of me! Three years later I’m still working in an office and still loving it!  And office work has rekindled my love for numbers, I mean I did say I am a massive nerd, which has resulted in me taking further studies. So career wise, that’s pretty much as nerdy as it gets. Life wise however, it gets a little bit more in depth… 
  I am a massive fan of Tim Burton (as I just mentioned, told you its a massive obsession), Lord of the Rings, Jurassic Park, Big Bang Theory and crime programmes. Literally any crime programme I will watch. Oh and period dramas, I am a sucker for period dramas such as Little Woman and Pride and Prejudice. Oh and I am also in love with Halloween! 
Now asides from the blog I’m a pretty boring person to be honest. I love tea, I love sitting in my bedroom away from the world and well either listening to music or listening to music and doodling in one of my many sketch books. Oh that or getting tattoos. I currently have two sleeves in process, one a lot closer to completion than the other and that one being my arm. I have 11 tattoos in total however 2 will become 1 (I hope that was sung like the Spice Girls) when my arm sleeve is completed over the next few months. Another importance for me is spending time with my family and friends. Now I’m not the best at that as I am very much good at being a loner, but they are all very important to me. Including our family pet, who is a beautiful English Springer Spaniel who is absolutely bonkers and built like a tank! I swear if this guy runs at you in excitement, prepare to hit the ground he is solid!
  So there you have it, if I’m not blogging/updating social media for the blog, I’m either submerged in; numbers, family time, wrestling the Springer, working, art’ing (including making up words), attempting to socialise or binge watching LOTR or singing along to The Nightmare Before Christmas for the 1081232 time.
  Besides all that I am very passionate about raising awareness for Autism and Cancer research. Both of which are very important in my life. I have a younger sibling who has Aspergers, and they are simply the best and I don’t think could love anyone more than love them. I also have a few cousins who have Autism too, however they each individually appear on different sections of the spectrum. So knowing the struggles that Autistic people go through on a daily basis has meant I was absolutely shocked at how many people don’t know about it! For example, that ambulance going down the road may sound loud to you, but to someone with Autism who has hypersensitive hearing, that may sound like the siren itself is directly next to their eardrum, which is extremely painful. And if you weren’t aware of that, imagine how that same Autistic man feel if you are calling them weird or laughing at them as they have a meltdown in the street over that noise.So my aim is to spread as much awareness about that as I can, even if it means I’m only helping to educate a few people!
  Now Cancer research is a massive thing to me because that’s what was studying into. I wanted to help people throughout their treatment of Radiotherapy. Now I’m no longer pursuing that, my aim is to continue to give money to the charities, who are helping with the funding of the research to help find a cure, as I always have done. This has always been something I’ve been passionate about however, its also a hard reality I’ve had to face many times over the years that I’ve been alive. I have lost many loved ones to this disease, one more recently than I would have liked, so my desire to help fund that cause is amplified more and more as each day goes by. So much so I am looking into entering a few fund raisers myself, so watch this space!
  Now this may not have been the most exciting post out of all my posts, however I hope now these posts will feel more personal and more relatable, as you have a bigger insight to who I am as a person and not just Music and What Not. As my aim with this blog is not to just express my opinions, but to connect with people and remind at least one person how powerful music is and maybe even that its okay to not dig that number 1 single from the UK Top 40 chart. But to also remind people that music is the biggest connection in the world, that it generally doesn’t have any judgement attached to it. For example there will be someone 4000 miles away that is equally in love and touched by that Lana Del Rey song you are, and you may both comment on a blog post wrote by someone else who is a further 4000 miles away from you both. Which results in all three of you communicating and have a great conversation whilst being completely oblivious to what each others race/religion/sexuality/class is. And to me, that’s beautiful and what music is all about!!
 
 
Its expression, its an escape and its a unity!
Now lets get back to Music and What Not shall we?
As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below. 
 
Thank you,
 
Leanne xo
                                                           

Album Review #3

So I’ve always thought this girl group were talented, however over the years they caught my eye for how they stand together showcasing that they are all different and still all as beautiful as each other. How they’ve made a stand against bullying and encouraging young girls to be them and live how they want to, not to worry about their appearance and that its okay to be them is also a massive reason behind me liking and respecting the girls in this band. Well this time they’ve caught my eye (and my ears) with their latest album!
 
After being the first ever group to win the X-Factor, I expected these girls to fade into the background of the music world. And boy was I wrong!! They’ve now got; 4 albums, 15 awards and 4 number one singles! So who is this group?? It’s only Little Mix, like you didn’t already guess!
So Little Mix have released the album Glory Day which features the very well known and recognised Shout out to My Ex. Now this album is something else! Across the album a multitude of genres being crossed; from dance to pop to a Hiphop vibe and even an old school traditional pop/swing vibe! The way these different vibes and genres are incorporated and mixed together to create an album is incredible! So congratulations Little Mix and the production team on that one! But as well as this genre mix, you’ll notice that the big discussion points throughout the album are; independence, love and heartbreak. So not only is it a multi genre album filled with emotions and empowerment but it also oozes sassiness! The album also showcases each individual vocal talent the ladies hold, and this is done by not only showing that they can harmonise with each other, but that they can each over power one another effortlessly.
Now in regards to the songs, I do have a few favourites! So naturally have picked my top 3 and below I’ve explained why they are; 
  1. FU – This song has an old school vibe to it but is mixed with some electronic features as well as sassy lyrics. Its title itself explains the exact extent of sass it holds, however the lyrics themselves are quite funny. Lets not lie here, woman are tarnished with the psycho brush and this song just plays on that perfectly with lyrics such as “take my key to your benz”. Now why I like this song so much is because it reaches out to the part of a relationship where you both really hate each other and are driving each other mental, but you just cant stay away from each other. Its that toxic relationship that many of us have or will encounter in our lives. But its discussed in such a soft musical way that its not a power ballard and its not a dissing match song either. And with how the song sounds old school but has lyrics that include modern day terminology, just appeal to me! Its different and its refreshing, but its also real.
  2. Down & Dirty – This song just oozes dance hit! It also pushes the boundary of the label they’ve been given due to having a large younger fan base. This song its age appropriate yet brushes over the fact they are woman and not teenagers. Its clever as it never mentions the things its referring to. Im also not going to lie, but the GoT reference is also a killer move! Who doesn’t love GoT right?! This is a song I can see being blasted loud during the summer period and maybe even be a killer club song! Its repetitive beat will definitely get stuck in your head and make those feet move!
  3. Touch (Acoustic) – Now love the original version of this however, the acoustic one has made it in my top three purely for the vocal talent. The song itself in both versions is a great song, with beautiful lyrics that you cant help but sing along to. The original is also a floor number! I cant sit/stand still when its on, I just feel like dancing. However, acoustically you will fall in love with the voices of Little Mix. The acoustic version has been slowed right down, has soft piano keys and very strong powerful lyrics. You hear each individual woman sing their section so beautifully and then when they come together it is just simply mesmerising. High harmonies to perfectly pair the strong bearing solo voice during the chorus. Its just such a beautiful piece of music and I could honestly listen to it over and over. Goosebumps.
So if you haven’t already, it is definitely worth giving this album a listen to. You will be shocked! Its definitely something I never thought id enjoy and well I’m not ashamed to say I do!

As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
 
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below.
 
Thank you,
 
Leanne xo

"I try to make the worst seem better…"

  I am one for enjoying a song that makes you feel the emotions behind it, whether thats empowerment or even like crying into a tube of Haagen Daz ice cream. One of my favourite examples of this currently, is the recent release by Lady Gaga – Million Reasons. This song is just brilliant as its filled with emotions from the very beginning right down to the end. And its not just built up through the lyrics, the whole overall piece is incredibly done to portray these emotions that Ms Gaga must have been feeling when she wrote this masterpiece, and maybe still even feels every time she performs it or even sits at home in her pjs.
  So firstly I’m going to talk about the physical music side of this song. Something all songs will have is layers, this is the different instruments used and the different aspects that they bring to a song. In the case of Million Reasons the instruments used are; vocals, piano, cojan and acoustic guitar. The way in which these instruments are played and layered is key to how the song sounds when played together. Now when the song starts we are introduced to the soft keys of the piano and strings of the acoustic guitar. Playing similar styled tunes they build a romantic setting for the song. Then when the vocals begin, it is originally only Gaga herself, who’s voice brings more of a harsher tone to the gentleness of the piano/guitar. It is then joined at intervals by further vocals that add depth to specific words, illuminating the emotions behind them. Then we are also introduced during the vocals to the soft yet depth filled beats of the cojan. This layering builds an aspect of romance yet pain, especially with the depth of the cojan and the layering of vocals on specific lines. All in all the musical aspect of this song is strong and powerful but it such a delicate way, like a flower strong and vibrate to the eye but delicate to the touch, this song is strong on the emotions but delicate on the ears.
  Now, I’m going to talk about the lyrics and what my interpretation of them is. The song starts off with “You’re giving me a million reasons to let you go”, something no person wants to have to say or hear in a relationship. A sentence that admits defeat and heartache. This on its own is filled with raw emotion, emotion that is real. Then from here the lyrics become deeper and the way you feel becomes sadder. Now the emotion overall behind this song is quite clear (in my eyes). It is that feeling of painful desperation and desire that springs to life when, for whatever reason, your relationship seems to be falling apart with no obvious reasons to stay together. Despite it all, you deeply desire just one singular reason to pop up and prove why you should stay. A reason that you need to come from them. You can’t find it, or even you do know what it is, but it just needs to escape from the lips of your partner. “But baby, I just need one good one to stay”. For me, this song is that calling out for hope. It’s that acknowledgment of knowing that even the tiniest thing, will give you all the hope you need.
  This song is about heartbreak. It’s about loss. It’s about pain and desire and everything hanging on one thread. This song is real life and Lady Gaga has smashed it. Lady Gaga has beautifully mastered what is her own heartbreak into something thats not bitter, thats not nasty, but honest. No matter how the relationship ends, you will always face this stage. It’s horrible. But knowing that these celebrities who’s lives we admire and desire so much are facing them too, due to the openness of Gaga, just proves how human we all are. Overall this song is a masterpiece! It has been carefully integrated with layers, has tonnes of talent oozing throughout, and is easy to listen to because its gentle. This song deserves awards! It’s beautiful produced, beautifully written and to be completely honesty… It’s just about the best break up song I think i’ve heard! Huge congratulations to Gaga and team for creating such an incredible piece of music.





As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
 
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below.
 
Thank you,
 
Leanne xo
 

Get me to the gig!

 As a music blogger, it is no surprise that I love music. Its also no surprise that one of my favourite things to do is to go to a show. I love the intimacy from small venues and I love the volume of fans coming together at arenas and festivals. All in all watching a live show is an experience I enjoy reliving over and over, again and again.
 Music for me is a part of life, it’s everywhere you turn, in the good and in the bad. For me it’s also an escape. Music can give you hope, support or even make you feel things you didn’t know you could feel. So when you go to a show, reliving those things whilst listening to them live is just amazing. But also the intimate interaction of all shows itself if phenomenal, as the band/artist is vulnerable in that singular moment. And by vulnerable I mean any emotions they feel or hold within a song is often brought back within each performance. So living that experience with fans watching your every move can be an exhilarating yet terrifying experience. So knowing that, that band or artist is feeling that way in front of you alongside the emotions it brings for you, is simply breathtaking. And it’s all of those things mixed up in one giant bowl that makes watching shows such an important thing for me.
 Now unfortunately attending these shows can be difficult due to getting hold of tickets. Yes if you miss the ticket sale date and it’s for an artist like Beyonce then you are likely to have missed out altogether as the tickets have sold out. If it’s for a band like Outlander (a band local to Birmingham, UK) then you may miss the ticket sale because you weren’t aware of the show or you’re not from the town they’re playing. But then there’s dodgy tickets. Dodgy tickets are the bane of my life! They ruin so much for so many people and to be honest it’s a crime that needs to be over with already.
 So dodgy tickets, or professionally know as illegitimate tickets, are out there and unfortunately a lot of people get sold them. Illegitimate tickets can be anything from; fake tickets that have been made up the ticket seller, fake tickets that are copies or a legitimate ticket (resulting in a group of individuals all having the same ticket ID number), or even real tickets that have been sold in an illegitimate manner resulting in the new ticket holder spending a lot of money on the purchase and receipt of the ticket.
 So i’ve decided with the knowledge i’ve collected over the years from purchasing and even selling tickets (I can confirm that I have only even sold legitimately), that I would try to provide some tips on how to purchase legitimate tickets. I would like to point out before you continue reading however, that these are solely my tips and not a step by step guide on how to purchase tickets. I would also like to add that I have never been unfortunate enough to purchase an illegitimate ticket, and I solely believe that’s down to the fact I am a massive worry head and only use the steps and sites that I will mention below.
Ticket purchasing –
 Firstly, you need to know who’s touring, who’s coming to your country/town and well when! You can keep track of this by using any of the following;
  • Official page of the band/artist
  • GetToTheFront.com – i’ve used this site
  • Official social media sites of the band/artist (Facebook/Instagram/Twitter) – i’m not going to lie, I am a serial follower of bands/artist both unsigned and signed.
  • Being signed up to marketing with ticket providers i.e. Ticketmaster – I get emails from Ticketmaster constantly about shows, yes I’ll admit at times it’s annoying but I’d never unsubscribe
  • Being a member of O2 Priority
Checking sites like these will ensure you are constantly updated around the music scene in terms of touring. It also allows you to plan in advance any tours you want to go to before tickets are released on sale, informs you of any pre-sales and in terms of festivals it can keep you up to date on announcements and payment plans. The one year I went to the Reading Fest I utilised a payment plan which gave me a certain amount of time to gather my funds rather than paying upfront, which was so helpful as I was a college student receiving £20 pocket from my parents, whilst being introduced to the world of clubbing. So as you can imagine that was the perfect way for me to be able to afford to go, as I was able to save so much each month and socialise with my friends who were all turning 18 too (shout out to my parents for putting up with me moaning I had no money during this time, you beautiful people).
 Secondly, you need to ask yourself the following questions;
  • Who do I want to see? – Drake, Kings of Leon, Foo Fighters or even Little Mix?
  • Where do I want to see them? – My home town or do I want to travel?
  • Do I want to sit or stand? – Do I want to dance? Could I really last in a moshpit?
  • How much is my overall limit? – Can I afford to see them and travel? How much are my bills this month?
  • Can I make it that day? – Have I got holiday allowance left at work? Do I have an exam the next day? Is it a school night?
Now these questions may seem really obvious, but for me there are the most important items to address before even looking at ticket sites. These questions are important because if you want to go and see someone who’s only doing arena tours and you live in a small village, there’s a high chance you will be travelling to see them.
 After you’ve answered those questions the next thing to do is look at ticket providers. Now I personally use direct links from the venues (if they’re smaller venues such as O2 Academy’s) or Ticketmaster. Now unfortunately the sites I am gonna list are mainly United Kingdom venue orientated, but if you do know any legitimate sites for other countries please feel free to leave them in the comments box, as I am all about sharing the knowledge! 🙂
So the sites best to use (again my opinion) are the following;
  • Ticketmaster – I use this website nearly every time I purchase online
  • Ticketweb
  • Gigantic
  • AXS
  • Ticket Factory – I have used
  • Links direct from the official pages of the band/artist – I have also used this opinion as lets face it the band/artist isn’t going to promote dodgy tickets, they want their fans there.
  • Direct link from the venue – O2 Academy/ O2 institute will often have a direct link to the ticket sales provider from their website. You click ‘Buy’ and it takes you there. This is also another way I have personally bought tickets.
Now using these sites, you can also check the availability and work out how quickly shows are selling out. You can also check the seating plan of the arena, which is handy as if you are buying seating tickets you need to know what seats you are purchasing for the night.
Finally, when purchasing your ticket it is worth purchasing the ticket security you will be offered. This is usually only an additional couple of pounds and is definitely worth it! It means if you don’t receive your ticket you are covered, if your ticket is damage in the delivery you are covered. Trust me it’s so worth paying that extra for. Then once you’ve purchased your ticket ensure you screenshot your confirmation screen and that you’ve received an email with the receipt on. It may sound excessive but having that proof is vital.
How to identify “dodgy” tickets?
 Big give away for me is always the pricing of the ticket! If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. These are usually the tickets that have been made or are copies. However, sometimes they can be genuine, for example someone has bought tickets to a gig to go with their partner and unfortunately they’ve broke up and the buyer no longer wants them and doesn’t care for them. So after purchasing them for £40 each, they sell them for £40 as a pair. There are times when that is the case, however i’d be very vigilant with this and ask as many questions as possible regardless of how annoying you may sound.
Another big give away is when a ticket provider site randomly crashes (usually right after tickets first go on sale), suddenly the tickets are sold out and random tickets start appearing for cheap or even way too expensive prices. These are key signs of ticket targeting (as its direct at those desperate to go to the show). Now these tickets are legitimate in the sense of they are the actual tickets, however they are illegitimate as the seller may not actually possess them and has simply obtained information about them via a hacking scam. Or they are illegitimate in that the way they were purchased to be resold was not done legally.
 Good ways of spotting these are the following;
  • Extremely high prices
  • Ticket sale starts hours after all other sites
  • The site hasn’t been published on the venue’s site
  • You haven’t heard of that ticket sales provider before
  • Do research on them- if you find chats/reviews and they state dodgy activity or bad past experience, I really recommend you don’t use them.
  • If an individual seller, and they refuse to communicate with you
How to stay up to date or be knowledgeable in this area;
  • Check the news – The Guardian newspaper reports on this, Coldplay and YouMeAtSix are highly involved with bettering the experience for fans in regards to purchasing tickets. They have wrote open letters to the government and even set up petitions. All of which you can find and even sign the petition (I have).
  • Research legislations
  • Research the law – Metropolitan police have released a document that is available online for the public to read.
  • Check social medias, read blogs, speak to friends and family – I’m pretty sure you will know or at least follow someone who is interested in this, and if you just bring it up in conversation you could be updated a lot around it. You may even discover you know someone (either directly or of them through common friends) who has been subject to a dodgy ticket sale and they can advise which site to not use.

But seriously check the news, simply Googling “illegitimate ticket sales” will bring up news report after news report. Google search “Josh You Me At Six” and that brings up tonnes more, I mean he has even personally sold tickets in a shoe retailer in London he is that passionate about it.
 Now in all seriousness, I hope that this post brings some help and even some light to the subject of dodgy tickets. I will however end this post with this;
 When buying tickets, keep yourself in your thoughts. If you have been or unfortunately do become a victim to an illegitimate ticket sale, please remember don’t blame the band/artist and don’t tarnish the legitimate ticket sale sites with the same brush. They don’t like it as much as you don’t.
 Also, to those who have been a victim, I can only send my condolences and support to you! And to let you know that I have the upmost respect for you to go out and continue to buy tickets to support the music world xo
As always, thank you for taking the time to read my post filled with my opinions and thoughts. I honestly means more than you could imagine!
If you’d like to leave any feedback or comments, please do so in the comments box below.
Thank you,
Leanne xo
This post was sponsored by GetToTheFront.com
GetToTheFront is a leading independent music news site that brings you all the latest artist and tour announcements. You can also buy tickets through their site with one of their approved and trusted ticket providers. Head there now to check it out! http://www.gettothefront.co.uk/

'Watching Sextapes whilst Half Asleep'

The act of doing something that involves danger or risk in order to achieve a final goal.
Risk taking.
Its something we all do throughout our lives that’s unavoidable. However, something I love is creative risk taking. This is when you put something you love to the test to push yourself and those around you further; and that brings me to this post…

Now you may have heard of a Midlands (England, UK) based band with a rather unusual name that have previously featured on this blog. I am of course referring to the five piece band Sextapes.
Sextapes’ sound was a mixture of grunge styled heavy/shouty vocals, entwined with melody driven riffs perfectly due to the balance of upbeat “happy yet moody” drums and soft mellow toned bass.
Full of energy, Sextapes performances were always captivating, displaying their passion for music. This made watching them a joy rather than a task and their music more enjoyable.

As you’ve probably guessed from the past tense language and talk of risks, that Sextapes are no more! They now go by the name Half Asleep, which also brings through a new sound. This sound is quite different to that refreshing tinge to the hardcore scene that they brought through as Sextapes, but is equally as refreshing to the Midlands current music scene.
The Midlands is very heavily yet proudly displaying pop punk, punk and hard-core bands at the moment; all of whom show some serious talent!
Half Asleep however, consist of what you would expect from bands breaking through the Midlands scene over the last few years such as Peace and Swim Deep, whilst maintaining individuality by drenching their songs with shoegazey guitars and hypnotic dreamy vocals.

With their first single released, Half Asleep have further proved they have an endless amount of talent to display. By breaking down this new single, it makes understanding their new sound as well as get a real feel for why I truly believe that Relax & Distill was a very clever choice for breaking that Sextapes barrier.
When listening to the vocals it is clear to hear the change that has undergone immediately. The vocalist has transformed his vocals from harsh to a much softer approach which displays different tones compared to previous releases as Sextapes. When speaking with the vocalist about this change of technique he said “I can get much more melody into my words and it feels more natural”, something which is a key for vocalists to feel as strain to vocal chords can be damaging for careers.


Guitars have managed to keep their powerfully catchy riff technique but have now teamed them up with soft distortion and carefully structured “cheery” chords that bring a nice aspect to the music. By having two guitarists and different tunes throughout, there is a more structured and empowering vibe built in rather than just a sense of melody being played throughout.
Drums used in Sextapes were heavy, big and powerful; perfect for that grunge influence they were playing with. However, drums have now been switched up to a combination of fast paced and slow paced dynamic beats that work well against the shoegazey guitars and mellowed vocals. In this new single you can hear the drummers use of cymbals is not overbearing, but that he has incorporated them nicely against the new sound so that that previously edgier aspect is not heard.
Bass is structured and well blended within the song, keeping that basic structure within crisp and clean, whilst also with a touch of off balance enabling you to hear it.


All in all, Relax & Distill is a brilliant song that’s well structured and displays brilliantly that the boys really have thought about their music. This goes on to show how they want to progress, that this is not a hobby, but something they are all passionate about. Showcasing their talents for writing and producing, I can honestly say Half Asleep are some talented guys! I mean pulling off their breath-taking performances is a talent in its own, let alone being able to make tracks that stick in your head for all the right reasons.

Something I really like about the Half Asleep boys is that despite all this change, they are still humble to how they started. There are no bitter feelings towards the origins and being Sextapes, so much so that when it came to releasing their EP it only seemed fitting to incorporate something a little Sextapes with it. As best described by one of the guitarists as “an ode to Sextapes”, they cleverly titled their EP ‘Watching Sextapes whilst Half Asleep‘. Even better, to keep up with this quirky and individuality that they bring, you can purchase their EP on either standard classic CD or a retro cassette tape! Yes, you can purchase ‘Watching Sextapes whilst Half Asleep’ on cassette tape that has been beautiful crafted to keep Half Asleep in your mind (images of both CD and cassette tape can be found below). But honestly, trust me when I say I truly believe you will not be disappointed in this EP, as it features a few songs that were crafted whilst the boys were Sextapes enabling you to hear and feel the growth they have undergone as a band.











I am also very excited to announce that there is AN OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO! Hand crafted by the boys themselves, this homemade video is full of clips of; them performing at gigs as Sextapes, them together proving they are a crazy normal bunch of 20 something lads, hilarious moments from mischievous nights and powerful dancing/singing! It is one of those videos that even though some footage is bad phone camera quality, it just makes you feel more connected to the band, and you just love it! Not to mention it is pretty great, I really can’t get enough of it… BUT YOU’LL HAVE TO GO ON THEIR FACEBOOK PAGE TO VIEW IT OOPS (hey like what I did there, huh?!)


You will also find below a video that’s been crafted by talented artist Georgia, this video features the new single as well as some clips from past gigs the boys have performed. This is a great way for you to understand what I mean by their hectic performances and how much enthusiasm is displayed at each gig. Especially as Georgia has managed to capture and entwine different gigs into one beautiful video similar to that of a tour video!

Now whilst checking these videos out you can also go over to their official Facebook page and give them a cheeky little like, which will help you keep updated on any exciting news or even check out their merchandise over on their Big Cartel site. Which to be honest, we know you’re going to do all these things because that’s what I’ve done!!

Half Asleep Merchandise Site

Official Facebook of Half Asleep

As always, its an absolute pleasure to have you read our blog. It means way more than you can imagine to me! Thank you for reading my thoughts and opinions, best wishes! Leanne xo

This post featured some editing by Guest Blogger Kirsty.

Takeover Post #4 “Don’t tell me you’re okay…”

Hey guys, here she is again the lovely guest blogger Kirsty! xo



   Once upon a time, in an old college in Walsall, 4 guys came together and started making music…

   I say once upon a time, but it’s all happened very quickly. Since October Boots, Chris, Shaun and Brad, have moved out of their family homes into a huge new place together. Fitted with a recording studio, a corridor you can skate in and the home of Band Pads; it’s pretty hectic, with something always happening. Boots and Chris have come the long way from a tiny town in Wales near Aberystwyth, while Shaun and Brad were just down the road in Cannock.

   In July 2015 Boots, Chris and Brad were on a European tour with their former bands; My Favourite Runner Up and Leokai. It’s safe to say that on that tour, something special happened. On returning home, Brad made the decision to leave Leokai and join Boots and Chris in My Favourite Runner Up, after the sad departure of their drummer and bassist. Brad having to travel 100 miles to the other boys and the MFRU base in a tiny Welsh town wasn’t ideal, so the idea came to move to a new place; central and with a big music scene.

   October came and they settled into their new home. But as time went on, the boys realised that something wasn’t quite right. The old, MFRU feel wasn’t the same with half the band being new members. They wanted to write new music, as a new group of friends, in a new place.

Łed By Łanterns.

   Still just the 3 of them, they still needed a bassist… Enter Shaun. Previously a member of The Always as lead singer, Brad introduced Shaun to Boots and Chris. He quickly decided to join them, moved in and bought with him a lot of talent; it was time to make music.

   After announcing the end of MFRU in January, the boys needed to create the hype needed to launch a new band. YouTube covers were filmed, songs written and ideas scribbled all over the place. Fitting in all this hard work around their busy work schedules and family lives was sometimes testing, but by the start of February the boys had announced their new band, their new single to be launched on the 15thFebruary.

   ‘Recovery’, their debut single, was written and the demo recorded in their home studio in Walsall, went on to be recorded in CDS Studios with Mike Curtis in Essex, finally to be sent off and mastered at the one and only Abbey Road Studios in London. Once recorded, it was time for the video. Filmed all over the place – in family homes, local pubs and video studios, James Embrey and Chris Benningwood of Rolling Vision once again worked their magic and created something beautiful.

   Sending off their single to BBC Introducing seemed like a good place to start for the boys and on 6th February ‘Recovery’ was aired on BBC Introducing West Midlands alongside one of my favourite bands, Beaumont. With our radios on, 8pm came and I sat waiting for it to play. Half an hour in, my brain filled with new music and bands to check out, my wait was over. Saying that they were a great new up-coming band from Walsall, mentioning their awesome YouTube covers and saying that the single was incredible, it seemed to have gone down well. The reaction from followers of the new band was great, and old fans from previous bands loved it too.

   Creating enough hype to get a debut single off on the right foot is hard work. Hours and hours of sharing the page on Facebook, creating Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr accounts paid off, with almost 1,000 likes on the Facebook page and a load of followers across the rest of social media, they were almost ready for the official launch.

   At midday on the 15thFebruary I sat with Boots in the old college in Walsall, were it had all began, waiting for the minutes to pass until it was up. Within seconds there were responses, shares, from old fans and new. His phone and lap-top were going absolutely crazy and I’m sure it was the same for the other guys. Watching the video, it is so professional. The filming is amazing, the idea and story-line relatable and the single just so catchy. The lyrics are beautiful; it is well played and fits well alongside other bands of their genre.

   I’m incredibly excited to see what is to come in the future for these guys. I know they have a couple of gigs booked, which of course I will be going to, and these will be announced and tickets will go on sale for these shortly. I have a good feeling about these guys, they’re absolutely committed to what they’re doing and it is already paying off. Definitely one to keep an eye out for.

   Below I have linked all 3 cover videos by the boys along with the DEBUT single ‘Recovery’. Their social media pages are also linked below. Be sure to check them out on Youtube, like all their pages, show them some support and get to a show whenever they may be! 

   Thank you for reading my third guest post on this blog! All comments and feedback are welcome, thanks again – Kirsty xx


Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ledbylanterns/or @ledbylanterns

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LedByLanterns or @LedByLanterns


Shaun – Justin Bieber / Love Yourself


Chris – One Republic / Counting Stars


Boots and Brad – One Direction / Perfect


ŁED BY ŁANTERNS – RECOVERY