Five Tracks – Up and coming

A key feature that I wanted on this blog was to share songs and artists that I am really enjoying listening to. This first list of my five recommended tracks are all from up and coming artists that deserve to be listened to. You may have heard some already, but either way I hope you enjoy the selection.

5. Mary Joanna & The Southern Electrikk – Wasted

Formed in Manchester and fronted by Mary Joanna Coogan, the band are described as a blend of dream pop, psychedelia, post punk and electronica. This is their debut single and its out on 22nd September. I really like the dreaminess of the track and am intrigued to hear more.

4. Rae Morris – Cold feat. Fryars

I’ve heard of Rae for a little while now, with ‘Do You Even Know?’ being a particular favourite. She has such a beautiful and distinctive voice and this song deserves to be her biggest hit yet. She has also collaborated with Clean Bandit on their song ‘Up Again’ which features on the album ‘New Eyes’. She is definitely one to look out for.

3. Nothing But Thieves – Graveyard Whistling

The first time I heard this song I fell in love with it and the entire EP ‘If You Don’t Believe, It Can’t Hurt You’ is really strong. This track has recently been played by Radio 1 and I’m sure its only a matter of time before the band hit the spotlight. Some bands just stand out for unexplainable reasons, and personally, I think Nothing But Thieves are one of those bands.

2. Chlöe Howl – Disappointed

Probably best known for the hugely catchy ‘No Strings’, Chlöe was nominated for the BBC Sound of 2014 and is due to release her debut album later this year. Her latest single ‘Disappointed’ is another infectious track that I’ve been listening to non-stop and it also has a pretty cool video. Aged only 19, there’s lots to get excited about with Chlöe.

1. Southern – Where I Want To Be

When I heard ‘Where The Wild Are’ earlier this year, I was really impressed by Southern’s cool bluesy rock sound. Southern is brother-sister duo Thom and Lucy Southern who were born in Belfast and now based in Liverpool. I don’t know what it is exactly about their music, but this song was another immediate winner for me as soon as I listened to it.

Hope you enjoy the tracks and if you have any views, then please feel free to comment!


My Memorable Albums of the last 20 years. Part II

After a inexcusably large delay, I have now finally got round to publishing this second part of my memorable albums. So without further ado…

6. Lady Gaga. The Fame (2008)

I pre-ordered this album a few months before it was released in 2008 as I’d heard a few of Lady Gaga’s songs online and thought they were great. I always remember in one of my GCSE chemistry lessons my friend asking me who my favourite singer was and replying: “Oh you’ve probably not heard of her, her name’s Lady Gaga.” This was a good few months before ‘Just Dance’ was even released and I felt very smug when everyone starting raving about ‘Just Dance’ and ‘Poker Face’ when I’d already heard of them a while before. I was so excited when the album arrived and I listened to it non-stop for a good while. Whatever you may think of Lady Gaga now, you cannot deny that in her early days she was so fresh and exciting, especially for a fourteen year old.

7. Kasabian. West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum (2009)

Anyone who knows me knows how much of a Kasabian fan I am and this was the album that truly solidified my fan status. Although very unlikely, if Kasabian were ever to release a bad album, I would always forgive them because of the brilliance of West Ryder. This album was a huge release for me amidst the usual surroundings of mediocre pop that the majority of fifteen year olds listen to and I’m honestly grateful to Kasabian for making it. While many albums, even if they are favourites of yours, have weaker tracks that you might skip, there is not a single bad track on this album. It covers all moods, from the epic ‘Underdog’ to the slower and thoughtful ‘West Ryder Silver Bullet’. Did I mention I love this album?

8. Lissie. Catching A Tiger (2010)

I clearly remember listening to Lissie’s album a lot during the summer of 2010, oddly along with the soundtrack to ‘The Dark Knight’. Lissie stood out to me, not only for her great voice, but also the fact that she was so low-key and just cool. She wasn’t a Lady Gaga theatrical pop star known for what she wears just as much as for her music, in fact I barely even knew what she looked like. I’d just seen a few videos of her in a t-shirt and pair of jeans with her guitar. The point was that it was her music that I loved, rather than being sucked into a hype. I can’t remember how or when I heard of her, but I really did, and still do, enjoyed the album. The lyrics of her songs really appealed to me as well and when I listened to her songs I was transported to an all-American idyllic world.

9. Scissor Sisters. Night Work (2010)

Although the unashamed flamboyance of Scissor Sisters may seem to contradict my attraction to the low-key Lissie, once again it was the music that drew me in and nevertheless I have always admired the band’s sense of fun. You only have to watch their 2005 BRIT Awards performance! They really are just great. For me, this album was just pure fun and energy and listening to it always puts me in a good mood. ‘Running Out’ is probably the highlight for me, but ‘Skin This Cat’ is also pretty darn cool. While their previous two albums were also really enjoyable, for me this one showed something a little bit extra.

10. Ben Howard. Every Kingdom (2011)

During a school trip to Athens I mostly listened to both Ben Howard and The Smiths and, truthfully, it wouldn’t have been as good a weekend if I hadn’t had them on my iPod. Quite simply, this album was particularly memorable for me because I just really enjoyed listening to it and like many of the albums on this list, it got me through many of the petty stresses of being a teenager. I’d definitely say that my love for acoustic music started with Ben Howard and I always felt that more people needed to be aware of this album. Some days I’m just having a bit of  Ben Howard day and I put on this album. I think that says a lot about the album in that it can completely match my mood.

So that concludes my list of my most memorable albums, I realise that it hasn’t covered any albums from the last three years and of course, there are many that would have made the list if it had been a little longer. Choosing these ten albums was by no means easy, but hopefully I’ve managed to explain why they stood out for me in my own little musical history.

Thanks for reading,