First Aid Kit: 'Stay Gold' Review!

Picture yourself at a small festival, it’s a beautiful day and the sun is beaming down on your face. As nice it all sounds, something is definitely missing…Music to match this kind of day. This is where the harmonic folk band First Aid Kit comes in. The perfect and powerful, Swedish female duo are storming festivals such as Greenman and Lattitude with their gripping music from their new album ‘Stay Gold’ alongside with their bohemian edge. On first listening, the bands distinctive vocals make you believe the duo are from Nashville, the home of country music.

First Aid Kit has the capability to make you sit down and focus only on their touching and emotional songs. Whether their songs are delicate and slow or upbeat and joyful, the band can find a way of fitting deep, insightful words into their music. The girls show their country influences in their songs, especially the love song ‘Emmylou’. The song mentions country idols Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons as well as Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash. As if powerful lyrics aren’t enough, at all times the sisters keep their harmonic vocals strong throughout all of the two albums.

‘Stay Gold’ has more of a powerful and loud approach to you, unlike the duos previous album ‘The Lions Roar’, where only 3 people performed on stage. The new album includes a 13 piece orchestra in songs such as ‘A Long Time Ago’ and ‘Cedar Lane’. It gives the album a more gripping and satisfying sound to it, but also works with the lyrics of the songs to make us feel the emotions flowing through the album. First Aid Kit and their orchestra have even played Paul Simon’s ‘America’ when he won the Polar Prize. Simon stood up mind blown at the song being played to beautifully and powerfully in front of him.

Throughout the album, the songs stay at a relatively slow pace, emphasising the meaningful lyrics and melodic vocals. Then all of a sudden, a quicker beat enters and your eyes start to brighten. ‘Heaven Knows’, the second to last song on the album, takes folk back to its original roots with its simple chords, uplifting beat and catchy words.

I recommend this album with all of my heart, because as the saying goes…’Folk finds everyone in the end’.

'48:13' Kasabian Album Review.

On the 10th of June, Kasabian released their new album '48:13'. The name comes from the total time it takes to listen to the album, however I have definitely listened to it for more than this time as I am completely obsessed with it. The band decided the name of the album half way through the making of it so it just shows that the time and effort that went into making the songs their exact timing was unbelievable. The bands lead guitarist Sergio Pizzorno said '48:14 doesn't sound right' and as outgoing and strange as he is, he somehow has a point.

The album described as 'electronic and neo-psychedelic' is by far the best album I have listened to this year or maybe even longer. I listen to the album and end up getting neck-ache from consistently nodding for the 48 minutes and 13 seconds. The first song on the album called '(shiva)' is an instrumental, but suddenly you realise that this album is going to be something good when the volume slowly rises as a build up. The song instantly merges into the next song that's called 'bumblebee', where as soon as it starts you are dropped head first into this huge, heavy song that blows your mind. Its the heaviest song on the album and definitely the one you head-bang to. I feel this song in particular is slightly different to the others as a genre because I see it as a definite heavy rock style of music, whereas the others are still rock, but with a more electronic feel.

Even though I could go on for days about every single song, I am going to skip to my favourite one called 'treat'. The song is almost seven minutes long and there was no point in the song I lost concentration or got bored, everything was new and had a build up or instrumental. The instrumental in particular is my absolute favourite section of the 7 minutes as it turns into what sounds like a late 80's/early 90's house track, I completely fell in love with it.

Then there is the most popular track of them all to the public, the song 'eez-eh'. This song replays itself in my mind for almost every hour of the day apart from when I am sleeping...In fact I wouldn't be surprised if one night I have sang it in my sleep, which is ironic as the main lyric in the song is 'gonna keep you up all night'.

I couldn't fault this album what so ever and I believe due to this album, Kasabian have literally worked magic and reached their best.

I am not going to link any of the songs from the album onto this review as I genuinely believe you need to listen to the album in order or even just buy the album because you will like it. If not you can't be concentrating properly as its bloody brilliant.

Arctic Monkeys Finsbury Park Review!

On Saturday (24th May), I went to see Arctic Monkeys at Finsbury Park. I go to London a lot to see family but have never been to a concert in Finsbury, one of my favourite bands 'The Stone Roses' played there last year and I was really disappointed to have not been able to see them, so now I am really glad I have seen Arctic Monkeys as well as the support acts Tame Impala, Miles Kane and Royal Blood at an area that is now known for setting up amazing concerts.

I was definitely surprised by the duo band including a bass player/lead singer and a drummer, known as Royal Blood. Before the concert I didn't feel the need to listen to them, even though I actually was impressed by them when watching them play their song called 'Little Monster' on Later Live with Jools Holland. However, seeing them at Arctic Monkeys has made me become a fan and I am genuinely excited to see them next at Leeds Festival. This band are the sort that everyone just naturally nods their heads to, especially the man behind me at the gig who was a bit less nodding and a bit more head banging. Overall, Royal Blood were a really good first act to get the feel for what was to come at the concert.
This is the music video to 'Little Monster'.

The next support act to come on stage was Miles Kane, well know for singing the songs 'Rearrange' and 'Come Closer' but also being in bands such as 'The Rascals' and the duo with Arctic Monkeys' Alex Turner called 'The Last Shadow Puppets'. I was amazed by Miles Kane and thought he was brilliant, I never really listen to him that much but I knew enough of his songs to sing along to, but when he was up there playing, I was shocked at how much better he is on stage that through earphones. He had a ridiculous amount of energy which made the crowd enjoy loads more, he was great at the guitar and looked as if he had a really good relationship with the bassist, guitarist, drummer etc, showing a lot appreciation for them. My definite favourite part of the set was when he played the famous song, 'Sympathy For The Devil' by The Rolling Stones. This is a video from Finsbury Park of Miles Kane singing Give Up/Sympathy For The Devil.

The third and final support act for Arctic Monkeys was one of my favourite bands, Tame Impala. The psychedelic rock band were fantastic and didn't fail to please me. The lead singer, Kevin Parker, had a cold and still sounded great. As well as this, like always, I was mind blown by the bands talent with instruments and especially pedals, I know for a fact I could never be responsible on stage for that many pedals like Kevin Parker. My favourite out of all the songs they played was 'Half Full Glass Of Wine', which sounded amazing. However, I think the daylight didn't do the band justice as I thought that when it is dark and there is loads of lights that enhance the psychedelic feel and also the screens with the patterns they put on specially for Tame Impala, it is so much better as I have seen the band before in a dark tent at last years Leeds Festival, but obviously this wasn't their fault what so ever and even with or without lights, the pleased the audience definitely and I thought they were really good, I was also thinking at the time, if Woodstock was still going Tame Impala would be good for it. This is a video of Tame Impala's song 'Half Full Glass Of Wine' at Finsbury Park.

After all these brilliant acts, came the band we all were here to see, Arctic Monkeys. I've seen them at London O2 Arena three years ago when touring for there 'Suck It And See' album. To say that I genuinely believed no other concert could top that one, its not surprising that the band actually out did themselves. I definitely feel like Finsbury Park helped the band be as good as they were over the two nights. As soon as the song 'Do I Wanna Know?' started and the stage revolved with flashing lights and the wave patterns on the screens, everyone screamed. Like it was at Glastonbury, 'Brianstorm' came on straight after and the crowd knew every word, showing their commitment. My personal favourites on the Saturday were AM's 'I Wanna Be Yours' and 'Fireside' (which is so much better live than on the album), '505' from the 'Favourite Worst Nightmare' album, 'Cornerstone' from the Humbug album and the one that surprised us all was 'Standing Next To Me' by The Last Shadow Puppets which Miles Kane came on for which was a great way to end the show. The whole band had a really smart look to them and really showed the top of their range musically as well. The only problem I thought with the set was that there wasn't enough of the 'Whatever People Say I Am Is What I'm Not' album which would have made the set a good 2 hours which would have been a lot better, other than that, it was phenomenal. These are some videos of the the songs 'I Wanna Be Yours', '505' and 'Standing Next To Me' live at Finsbury Park. I have put the 'Cornerstone' music video on as well as I think it's ace.


'The Latest Songs' Recommendations!

Here are some newly released songs I really like and suggest you should listen to and why!

Magic - Coldplay

Usually I don't like most Coldplay songs, but this one I really like. This is because it's just really easy listening and simple, but also gets stuck in your head. At first it is not really like any of the other Coldplay albums, it is really delicate and soft, then towards the end of the song it turns more upbeat and sounds like the 'Mylo Xyloto' album. I really like this song and even though I haven't listened to the full album that has only just been released called 'Ghost Stories', if it is anything like 'Magic' I will probably really enjoy it. From what I've heard it is meant to be really good, but also emotional as it possibly about Chris' break up. I have linked the music video 'Magic' underneath.

Blondie - I Want To Drag You Around                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       This song is one of my favourite songs at the moment! It has an amazing vibe to it that a bit reggae but also very new and electro. The keyboard is my favourite instrument in the whole song, it sounds really original and different to most other Blondie songs. I'm actually really glad this song has come out as I know it will definitely be played at the Sheffield O2 Academy which I am lucky enough to be going to! I will probably write a review of how it went when the time comes. To top off this amazing song, Debbie Harry's voice still sounds really young and clear, even listening to the live version of the song it is still amazing how much the same she sounds. In most of Blondie's older songs recently, they have sounded more mature due to her voice, but 'I Want To Drag You Around' is not like that at all! 


Band Recommendation: Wolf Alice

This month's band recommendation is the alternative rock band called Wolf Alice. The band consists of 3 men, a drummer, bassist and guitarist, then a female singer who also plays guitar. The band have very 'nice to your ears', new and vibrant music with a good, young look to them. Ellie Rowsell (the lead singer) has a slightly unique, and delicate sound to her voice which is shown in most of the songs they have made, especially the song 'White Leather' which is definitely a favourite of mine. This song (like most others) has soft and light guitar and drum parts to amplify Ellie's voice which is pulled off really well!

The band from London have been nominated for NME Awards for the 'Best New Band.' When I realised Wolf Alice were nominated I was genuinely pleased for them as I really don't think they have enough popularity yet (usually I get frustrated if a band I like get really popular but this one deserves it.) However, they seem to be quite popular in Leeds as they are playing at Live at Leeds in May and Leeds Festival in late August which I am definitely looking forward to as I am going to Leeds Festival, no doubt they will be awesome.

To everyone who hasn't heard of Wolf Alice you should definitely listen to them! They can be found on Spotify and Youtube. I have linked one of their music videos from Youtube called 'Bros.' I've done this one as it's joyful and happy and my favourite, the music video is cool too.

My Band's Music Clips!

Here is a few videos of my band (Harbour) performing at Leeds O2 Academy!

Oh My 

Take Me Home

Vinyl's You Need.

For a while I have been interested and wanting to collect vinyl's. So when my dad came home around February with a vinyl player and a vinyl by The Jam, it's safe to say I was happy.

A few months on and I have a fair amount of vinyl's, enough to tell you all the top 5 vinyl's I have collected and I think you should collect.

5 : Antares Mira Sun - Tame Impala.
I have chosen this because overall I think it is a great EP, whether it is on your iPod, CD, cassette tape or vinyl. I believe that the best way to listen to a vinyl is when you are sat on your bed, watching it spin around with the music playing as loud as possible, so when you are doing exactly that with this psychedelic EP on, it's almost hypnotising. So to anyone who hasn't got this on vinyl, or hasn't even listened to this EP yet, please do so.

 (I also recommend getting Tame Impala's most recent album, Lonerism. It is an amazing album which I unfortunately do not have on vinyl yet, but I will do sooner than later!)

4 : Blood Sugar Sex Magik - Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Literally 2 days ago I bought this album on vinyl. It is one of my favourite albums and on of the albums surprisingly I know every single word to. I can't listen to it without jumping around the room and screaming the words at the top of my voice, which is a bit harder to do with vinyl because you don't want to scratch it by jumping, especially when you have big feet like me. However turning the volume up and screaming and jumping in a different room never hurts anyone, sometimes my dad even joins in. Overall, I promise that if you get this album you will enjoy every second of it whether you are sitting down or jumping around like a maniac.

3 : The John Lennon Collection - John Lennon.
No one can deny that John Lennon was (and still is) brilliant. So listening to an album full of his amazing solo songs that have been released throughout the years is a great thing. The songs on this album sound incredible on vinyl, especially with the crackling in the background slightly. However, the one song I wish was on this album was Mother as it is my favourite John Lennon song alongside Watching the Wheels. But overall, we all need this album.

2: Dark Side of the Moon - Pink Floyd.
This is another one of those incredible hypnotising albums that you have to watch the vinyl spin round for. I actually prefer this album on vinyl than a CD or iPod etc. One of the reasons why is because when listening to this album on vinyl, I couldn't tell for a while whether the vinyl is warping or if it just the way the song 'Speak to Me/Breathe' goes, either way is sounded cool. Luckily I realised on the bus home one day that that is way the song goes, which just made me want to listen to the album even more.

1: Abbey Road - The Beatles.
Everything about this album is amazing and definitely my favourite album overall on vinyl. From the crackling to watching it spin around to jumping around the room screaming the words to 'Maxwell's Silver Hammer.' Some of it even sounds a bit psychedelic! For me, this is album all vinyl lovers should have. Because I am currently revising for my GCSE's pretty much all the time, I enjoy listening to music whilst doing so and this is the perfect album to revise to! We all need this album in our lives.

I hope I have encouraged you to go out and buy these vinyl's! The HMV in Leeds sells them now as well as stores like Jumbo Records and Crash Records, so if you are near a HMV you should go in and have a look!