Thursday, March 26, 2015

Christmas Came Early: Muse Is Dropping A New Album

How I love Muse. Let me count the ways. Great soul channeled tunes: check. Amazing lyrics: check. Rock ballads that blow me away: check. Instrumental virtuosity: double check (seriously, have you seen Matthew Bellamy bring down the house as he literally dominates the piano? It's pretty much like watching Lang Lang perform, but with like, about 1000x more bass. Example: "Butterflies & Hurricanes" which I'd will use as the title of my unwritten book about my dating life. Dramatic title aside, it's a non-stop masterful instrumental.You couldn't come up with a better concert formula in my book. Piano AND rock? #givemeallthetunes 

Bellamy is a phenomenally talented musician, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer. I actually borrowed that wordy sentence from Wikipedia without shame. Some of my favorite concerts I've ever been to are Muse performances, and the level of passion, skill, and showmanship is nothing short of amazing. I don't know about you people, but Muse has single-handedly handed me some of the best soundtracks for my life. Oh, I have wallowed on a sofa as I drank red wine and listened to "Undisclosed Desires." And yes, I did put "Super Massive Black Hole" on non-stop repeat when my now husband (and soul mate, you may throw up a little at that, sorry. I'm a Libra) and I broke up for a bit. And I definitely run faster whenever I listen to rock out songs like "Map of the Problimatique." It's so depressing but awesome and I burn so many calories. Thank you Muse. Lastly, you should probably know that I pride myself on my ability to play "Knights of Cydonia" on Guitar Hero like a rock star. I'm such a dork, it's kind of amazing I have so many non-dorkish friends. Anywaaaaaaaaaaaay. (But I'm really awesome at Guitar Hero.)

Muse is releasing Drones on June 8, and if it's anything like the single "Dead Inside," then I think we're all going love the whole album. "Dead Inside" is just the perfect mix of jamming guitars, depressing lyrics, crooning singing, and a little bit of a dark sound. BAM! You know I love that combo. I am happy. It's like Christmas came early. I still want more presents of course. Check out the single on Spotify here or watch the video below:

Monday, March 9, 2015

Believe It or Not: Mumford & Sons Depart from Famous Style

Well, I guess nobody knows how to bring all good things to an end like the Brits. First, Downton Abbey killed off a slew of my favorite characters (the Deaths That Must Not Be Named) and now M&S are abandoning their famous UK Folk style to reign in a more electronic sound. I mean, NO. Just stop the madness! It's like J.K. Rowling's horrible last battle against Voldemort, and I feel wildly betrayed. Never mind quality, you just can't go changing things up like this on a girl! 

So here's the run down: we can apparently blame Texas. I blame Texas for most problems anyway, like my addiction to eating buckets of Guacamole and drinking on a patio if the weather is anything other than freezing. My list of vices links directly to the Lone Star state, I swear it. Apparently, Marcus Mumford was at a wedding in Texas when the song essentially just came to him and he got up and started singing it. The rest of the crew helped piece together the song which they titled "Believe." It seems like a weird wedding inspired song since it actually has a really depressing overlay that I usually enjoy oh-so-much. EXCEPT as a wedding song or when my mind is being blown to bits as I have to question everything I ever thought I knew about a band. "Believe" is the single for their upcoming album Wilder Mind. The track is pretty awesome, if it were, oh, say Coldplay putting out this tune, but who am I to tell musicians they can't shake things up?

The song is stripped bare for the first half and then breaks it down with drums and electronic guitars. And I'm like, banjos! Beards! Tambourines, oh my! What happened to M&S?!!! The group openly acknowledges that the new album is a huge departure from their previous albums. Well, that would be an understatement, I do believe. So here's the thing: the song is good. I would expect nothing less. It's just very different and pretty melancholy sounding (hope the wedding couple doesn't claim this as their personal love song). I also don't like the video, which basically makes me feel like I'm on a horrible Uber ride that won't end for 3 minutes and 47 seconds, which makes me question reality even more, because I love Uber.

But let's just cut to the chase and have you decide for yourself. There is not one ukulele in sight. Be strong, grasshopper. Love it or hate it? Are you a fan of the new M&S?

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

They Sing Ed Sheeran & Sam Smith At The Same Time; I Just Lost My Mind (I Love It)

STOP IT! Stop it right now! Whatever you're doing, I promise you, it's not as awesome as this musical mashup. The flawless singing, the perfectly blended lyrics, the gorgeous harmony is tooooooo much! But in the best way possible, like when you "accidentally" check out a shoe sale and leave with a rent's worth of shoes. Overkill? I mean, that's subjective. I call that a possible investment.

Ask me if I love Ed Sheeran. Go ahead. Answer: um, abso-freaking-lutely. How could I not adore that little ginger with a soul? His music is just lovely. And Sam Smith? Hello...probably some of the best pipes to come around in ages. I'm not really sure why I used the vernacular "pipes" to describe Smith's amazing vocals, because I'm pretty sure that's a term my grandparents would use, but I mean, retro is in.

I wrote about Sheeran here and did a review for Smith here, so if you are uber fans, you can read a little extra on our singers. In the meantimeSam Tsui and Casey Breves blend together "Thinking Out Loud" and "I'm Not the Only One" and the internet is kind of losing its mind over how awesome it sounds. I want you to lose your mind too (but, in the best way possible of course), so check out this video.

They Sing Ed Sheeran And Sam Smith At The Same Time. The Result Is Beautiful

Friday, February 13, 2015

Beck Made Me Love Him More

It goes without saying that I love me some Beyonce. She's pretty much everything. I love Sasha Fierce and I love Mrs. Carter, and I personally think Beyonce is an amazing example of a modern woman who juggles being a wife, mom, business woman and performer. And she looks amazing doing it.

Having stated that, I think Beck rightfully won his Grammy for Album of the Year; he was up against the likes of Beyonce and other greats, but his album rocked. His gracious response to Kanye West's COMPLETELY ASSDOUCHE BEHAVIOR was stunningly imperturbable and gracious.

In case you are a few moments behind the life and times of pop culture, Kanye pulled a Kanye (which is officially a synonym for being an overbearing, obnoxious, arrogant, god-complex ridden person with zero sense of propriety) and jumped up on stage to take the mic from Beck when he was accepting his Grammy. He swiped for the mic, seemed to change his mind and walked off the stage. Flashback to infamous Taylor Swift Imma let you finish moment, anyone? Turns out, Kanye wasn't joking around. After the show, he said he refrained out of resepct for his daughter, but he was dead serious, "I just know that the Grammys, if they want real artists, to keep coming back, they need to stop playing with us. We ain't gonna play with them no more," he exclaimed. "And Beck needs to respect artistry and he should've given his award to Beyonce."  Or not. 

Beck was incredibly chill and kind about the whole thing. After the show, Kanye ranted and raved that Beck, out of respect for the industry, should give his award to Beyonce. HOW IS KANYE ALLOWED IN A ROOM WITH PEOPLE? Ugh. I can't stand that short, arrogant little man.

Why Beck Won Artist of the Year/Most Gracious Winner EVER:

1. Beck wrote, produced, arranged and sang all 13 songs on his album. He played 16 instruments throughout the track. It's a gorgeous, soulful album. The kind you can curl up next to when you're in a true blue mood, or need a moment of introspection and inspiration.

2. Beyonce (nothing but love for that goddess!) plays zero instruments, needed 16 songwriters, producers, and composers to complete her latest album. So yeah, I see Kanye's point about artistry. Not.

3. Beck's music is rich, emotional, and soulful. It's stripped down and deceptively simple, easy to fall into and connect with; it's true music: guitars, singer, songwriter. Beyonce does what Beyonce does so well: a loud and fabulous production of music that predominantly happens in a studio with a lot of assistance of modern technology. Sure, I love it. Yeah, I'd go dance my face off at her concert, but it doesn't equal a superior album.

3. His response was so stellar that it made me respect him not only as an artist, but as a person. Despite the fact that Kanye absolutely dissed him, his response was incredible: "I thought she was going to win. Come on, she's Beyonce!" In response to Kanye's rant, he said, "You can't please everybody. I still love him and think he's genius," he concluded. "I aspire to what he does. How many great records has he put out in the last five years, right?" 

No, no you certainly can't, Beck. But with a response like that, you prove that you are a rebel of the best kind. Beck is a person who is not only true to himself, but does so with humility. I'll endorse and support that ALL OVER THE PLACE. Want to  hear the album that broke the internet? Here it is:



Thursday, February 5, 2015

Get Boho Fabulous with Zella Day

With a name like Zella Day, it should come as no surprise that she's one glorious little Boho chick. If I could pull off full fledged Bohemian, I would probably be decked out in non-stop hippie glory and mala beads every day. Alas, while my yoga loving, tree hugging heart would happily be swathed in tie dye, paisley, floral and drape-like wear, my body does not look particularly lovely in flowing, fringe covered garbs. And by not flattering, I mean I basically look like I rolled around in a linen tent and cinched it with a belt to give a go at fashion. First world problems all the way. Le sigh! Even so, my gypsy soul loves anything that's a tribute to being wild and free, so when I came across Zella Day, her music clicked with me.

A definite Boho-Chic gal, with a lush, modern style that's deeply seeped in Western Bohemian flair. It's fair to compare her to a less depressing version of Lana Del Rey, another singer I just heart all over the place. Their vocals and style have a similar sound, so if you like Lana Del Rey, you'll like Zella Day. Songs like "Compass," "Hypnotic," "Sweet Ophelia" and "East of Eden" are pure winners. I think "1965" might be my favorite of her songs. Hard to say. Totally a moody, fabulous tune though. I love moody. I just love it. I also adored her cover of White Strips "Sever Nation Army." I especially enjoy covers and remixes when they're done well, and she did it well. Some music purists find it annoying to have perfection messed with, but I think it shows the diversity of humanity and how we mentally and emotionally filter and interpret things differently. Mix it up, show me what you feel. That's how I like it. Have a lovely week, and may you listen to many, many new songs:)



Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Official Coachella Music Lineup

Coachella is like Mecca for music lovers. If you've never heard of it, the Coachella Valley Music and arts Festival is an annual twoweekend music and arts fest held in California. Every year, the Inland Empire's Coachella Valley transforms to the ultimate music bash, and music lovers from all over the world flock to this spot for an all-you-can-attend concert. I've attended before, and it's like this mashup of hippie/Indie/hipsters and everything else in between. Coachella is the ultimate smorgasbord of genres, bands, and tunes, so there's something for everyone.
There is definitely a true euphoria that comes from riding a non-stop music wave, so it's a great time to say the least. And, it's important to add that the festival draws not only music fanatics from all over the world, but also some of the best musicians as well. The lineup is consistently awesome every year.

Not surprisingly, tickets always sell out ridiculously fast (and there notsocheap) so it's no surprise that none are available on the official Coachella website, but they've joined up with Spotify to produce a playlist of the bands who are featured on their lineup. It's a pretty sweet playlist, and a good way to sample to flavor and experience of Coachella (minus the famous ferris wheel, Boho crowd, and pricey tix...), and if you're heart is set on attending this famous music fest, then mark your calendar for 2016 and sign up for their email alerts. Have a wonderful, music filled day!


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Noteworthy Artist: Kina Grannis

I collect new music in the way some women collect shoes. I have specific categories, special artists, and beloved songs. While I remain OCD in my compulsion to remain hyper-organized and clutter free, I'm a bona fide hoarder when it comes to my songs and vinyl records. I frequently go on Spotify binges to discover new tracks to tuck away into my increasingly growing stash. Ask me if I feel like I have a problem. Go ahead...ask. I know I do.

I recently came across the lovely singer-song writer Kina Grannis, and I just loved her right away. She has this breathy style of music that isn't overladen with the electronic beats and synthesized sounds of today's ridiculously vapid pop music. Emotionally meaningful and easy to listen to, her vocals are reminiscent of Ingrid Michaelson (another favorite of mine). And if I've said it once, I'll say it again and again and again: singers who write their own music will always have a superior edge in my opinion. There is a great mental and emotional collaboration that occurs when they sing their own music, because they're basically singing out their own diary. In addition to the incredible vulnerability this lends a song, who can interpret a song better than the actual writer? Great examples of this are Sam Smith, Adele, The Beatles and so many others.

Some of my current favorite Kina songs are "The Fire," "Write It in the Sky," "Oh, Father," and her cover of "Chandelier." Never heard her music? Catch it here, and have an amazing Sunday!