"They say that the future…"

  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. You can also tweet me through the blog twitter page @shtsngigsblog where you can see updates on the blog, teasers on posts and also what music I am listening to, or even send me requests or music you think I should listen to! Did I mention theres now a Facebook page? https://www.facebook.com/shtsngigs

Thank you,

Leanne xo

'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.

Guest Post #2 "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