Lewis Watson @ The Bodega, Nottingham | 3/4/17 | Reivew

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Support ~ Slowlights 

This classic indie rock band really lifted the mood in the Bodega. “I Try So Hard” was an especially drum-driven song where the band really came together. The lighting for the set was especially good, fitting the rock vibe yet creating an ambient glow.

Main Act ~ Lewis Watson 

Watson dotted his set list with older, fan-pleasing songs, including Halo, performed beautifully. However, most of the set consisted of songs off his new album, midnight. The audience gave an excited and stirring response to “little light” particularly. Other standout performances included “forever” and “give me life”.

Watson also gave a heartfelt yet funny story about watching the film Seeking a Friend for the End of the World on a plane and being inspired to write “when the water meets the mountains”. A personal favourite of mine off the album, this song offered the most dynamic lull and build, to captivate the crowd.

The newer songs were all received well, in fact, midnight offers hope that genuine progression for artists exists, with its added drums and variation.

★★★

 

Lisa Hannigan @ Liverpool Arts Club 21/10/16 Review

Support Act: Heather Woods Broderick

Singing later in the concert as part of Lisa’s band, Heather Woods Broderick was an apt warm up to Hannigan’s soft tones. Her echoing, haunting voice prepared the crowd as people gathered in to eventfully fill the Arts venue. Although at time not astutely enunciating, Woods Broderick’s melodies were beautiful and gave a comforting ambiance.

Main Set: Lisa Hannigan

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Opening with Little Bird, a beautiful folkoric tune from previous album Passenger, Hannigan silenced the audience totally with her lyrical genius. Other songs from this album were played, including the track Passenger itself and O Sleep.  In O Sleep especially we were able to see the full talent of other set members and the genuine collaborative nature of the band’s singing.

A couple of tracks in, Hannigan began to play tracks from her most recent album, At Swim. In gothic track Prayer for the Dying, the music talent of the double bassist was revealed. Ora was performed with a similar emphasis on strings. Meanwhile, Snow and We the Drowned were elaborated into much more energetic pieces, including some heavy drum work to gauge the crowd’s interest.

The standout performance has to be the acapella version of Hannigan and two band members (including Heather) singing Anahorish, a song of the new album originally a Seamus Heaney poem.

The most energetic song was most definitely Knots; Hannigan’s enthusiasm in the performance was visible. With the impressive drum work, everybody was tapping their feet.

While disappointing that older classic tunes like Home and I Don’t Know weren’t performed, it was a full set list with an intriguing band and a genuinely original sound.

Lisa Hannigan- Lo – Live @ Arts Club

 

May 2016:: Moody Playlist

James Blake- I Need a Forest Fire
James Blake- Radio Silence
The Who- Behind Blue Eyes
The Last Shadow Puppets- The Time Has Come Again
Radio Head- Glass Eyes
Coldplay- Up and Up
Drake, Wiz Kid, Kyla- One Dance
Kygo, Kodaline- Raging

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So far in 2016, we've had incredible albums from:
David Bowie, Radiohead, Villages, Bloc Party, James Blake, Kanye West, Drake, The Last Shadow Puppets, Beyonce and Kendrick Lamar.

I've also been revisiting:
Gabrielle Aplin's Light Up The Dark and Tame Impala's Currents.
One further go to playlist that I've been utilising is Orla Gartland's "amazing songwriting// sad songs" https://play.spotify.com/user/orlagartlandofficial/playlist/3YJIqujgs3TUhtX8xHHauI

With rumoured returns of Arctic Monkeys, an album from The Temper Trap to look forwards to, and Jake Bugg's third studio album being released in June, 
there is no shortage of fresh music around.

 

Radiohead | A Moon Shaped Pool | Review


Reminiscent of Paranoid Android and In Rainbows, Radiohead’s most recent album is a beautiful blend of electronic and acoustic orchestral rock. It requires a few listens and definitely stands best as a slow-burning entire album.

Top tracks:

Desert Island Disk- Beautifully acoustic with delicate turns in the guitar riff. The line ‘different types of love’ seems to capture the essence of the album. 

Present Tense- The Latin vibe in this track sets it apart from the rest. The lyrics are more prominent and many fans will welcome the return of acoustic intricacy. 

The Numbers- The repeated haunting guitar chords in this track make it addictive. Probably the best struck as a stand alone. 

Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Summary:

Featuring a culmination of very old Radiohead songs, technique and minor chord progressions Radiohead have developed over the years, this album up certainly has a wow factor. 

Spring Listens

Songs I have been loving this April include:

  •  The Last Shadow Puppets– The Element of Surprise 
  • Nick Mulvey– April
  • Nick Drake– Things Behind the Sun
  • Nina Simone- Just in Time

Top 5 Albums of 2015

Light Up The Dark | Gabrielle Aplin

Gabrielle Aplin’s second album saw a much more electric-guitar based rock twist to her sound, as opposed to early acoustic, soft-toned melodies. Whilst controversial, many fell in love with the slow, grungey sound of ‘Heavy Heart’ and other influences of country, folk, and rock throughout the album. The deluxe version of the album is especially impressive, and shows a really exciting, growing artist.

Singing for Strangers | Hudson Taylor

Alfie and Harry Hudson Taylor and their band, ‘Hudson Taylor’, brought out their debut album this year after much work planning and producing. It didn’t fail to live up to fans’ expectations with a perfectly balanced mix of old and new. The soul- affirming beat to ‘Don’t Tell Me’ sums up the positivity behind the album, even in the minor chord harmonies of more sombre songs. In summary, beautiful folk with a bit of harmonious rock influencing it.

Drones | Muse

Muse have produced yet another very playable album. Although in places slightly repetitive, songs like ‘Psycho’ don’t fail to add a heavier feel to any playlist. Moving away from their days of being comparable to Radiohead, ‘Dead Inside’ shows great use of enthusiastic drums to enhance the rock vibe.

Currents | Tame Impala 

Forever psychedelic and impeccably produced, Tame Impala’s ‘Yes I’m Changing’ is a catalyst for nostalgia with synth in the background, yet a solid drum beat making the song perfect for both work/ focus and dancing/ pre-drinking. The album comes together well, with variety amongst an distinct tone running throughout.

A Head Full of Dreams | Coldplay

Rumoured to potentially be Coldplay’s final album, ‘A Head Full of Dreams’ returns to Coldplay’s upbeat, uplifting tone of ‘Mylo Xyloto’. The album counteracts the heartbreak of ‘Ghost Stories’ perfectly, although tracks with dream-like instrumentals indicate that perhaps this  album is reflecting some celestial plane of joy as opposed to stark reality. But, after all, isn’t that what music is there for?