I hope you’ll forgive me for neglecting this blog somewhat this past year, quite a lot happened, to say the least. I joined a new school, played live (twice!), beat the OCD that had been with me throughout my years in secondary school, studied for some A-levels, travelled abroad alone, joined another band, bleached my hair and much more. Although I’m now heading into my last year in school and very much not the same girl who started this blog, I’d like to continue it with the same enthusiasm for indie pop, Scotland and all things twee. I’m not going to promise to update this blog weekly because I’m not sure I can handle that level of commitment as previous posts have shown but I will try my best to blog as often as possible. Now to music.
This blog has a contractual obligation to post anything and everything about the band Alvvays with giddy enthusiasm so here is their TWO(!!!!!) new singles from their upcoming album Antisocialites which is due out 8/9. I’m going to see them in September so prepare for a gushing and slightly illiterate review at some point.
And an extra bonus for any of you still reading – a cover of a Green Day song by a band formed for the school summer fete (yes that’s me on bass). What else could you want?
Well, that was a long break! However, I’m back now and I really hope to stay. Unfortunately, my life is mostly school work as I hurtle towards exams, more exams and then uni at an ever increasing speed but I’m also trying to find more time for the things I love, like writing this blog and playing music. As you might have been able to predict from my previous post, I am no longer an English lit student which seemed scary at first but was the right decision and has freed up more of my time. Basically, there is no excuse for me not to be a bit more proactive on here.
The next couple of weeks are going to be pretty exciting for me – I’m seeing Slowdive, followed by British Sea Power and then I’m going out to Germany for 10 days so expect to see plenty of stuff about that on this blog. Oh and, by the way, if you haven’t given both British Sea Power or Slowdive’s recent singles a listen then you really should.
The weather here is grey most of the time. Sometimes I like to imagine that it’s that kind of shimmery grey that brings snow. I never is. Often there is so much grey that it feels like I am drifting through some kind of dreamlike fog with neither the sharpness and light of sun nor the cleanness and excitement of snow. It’s on these kind of days that suddenly grey becomes the most interesting colour and I just stare out of the window where I am supposed to be working at the invisible clouds rolling into one. They are both the stuff of dreams and of boredom.
At these time I have a specific type of music that I listen too. It’s hard to describe but for the purposes of this blog I’m going to try. The songs are kind of dreamy, not too loud and normally drenched in reverb and fuzz. Often there is a sort of electro-pop feel to these songs. The original playlist of this kind of music was made from songs my dad played on the drive home from London after seeing Slowdive play their first show in 20 years at the Village Underground. Over time this kind of music has become a sort of genre for me.
Here are a few songs from this genre/ idea/ thing.
As far as any kind of remotely creative thing is concerned, I’m struggling with enthusiasm so I’m going to try and write a bit more about things I that I think about and stuff that I like. English A Level seems to be sucking my creative enthusiasm and, while sometimes I love it, sometimes it just feels like an incredibly cliched move. English Lit people read poetry, novels, like cool music and belong in bands like Belle and Sebastian. Is that who I want to be? It’s just all so confusing sometimes.
While I ponder my life choices, the country is hurtling towards Christmas at an ever increasing speed which means all of the shiny blue lights and consumerism that goes with it are right on my doorstep now. I thought that I would come up with a few Christmas songs that are a little more cosy and warm than the shiny packaged Christmas that is being sold in stores up and down the nation. I have resisted the temptation to put Low’s It Was Just Like Christmas on here because I recon that most people will have heard it before plenty of times. That said, it is a very good Christmas song and on their recent UK tour dates they have been playing a nice version which you can probably find on YouTube somewhere.
(These songs are a selection from my Spotify Christmas playlist that you can find here)
As promised last week, normal service has (sort of) resumed! This week I’ve been trying to get back to playing music as I had a break to start school after the gig in September. As part of this, I have been testing out a few synths on Cubase and what better way to test them than to play a brilliant (albeit redundant) anthem. I present my effort at the DDR anthem.
If you have read this blog for any time at all, you may have worked out that I have a deep love for Glasgow so this week’s music choices are going to have a distinctly Glaswegian feel.
Here are The Vaselines with Son Of A Gun (famously later covered by Nirvana)
Okay, I know this probably looks like I’m being a poser, maybe I am. Who knows?
As you may have noticed, I haven’t posted on here in a long while. I took some time out of running this blog because I had my GCSEs to concentrate on alongside doing some really exciting stuff that I will get on to later. I’m back on this blog now and normal posting will resume next week so watch out.
After GCSE mega panic was over, I spent a load of time rehearsing with Dad for Is It All Back + White Festival which was held a few weekends back in Shoreditch in the beautiful St. Leonards Church. I had an absolutely brilliant time playing live as part of Winterlight and the experience of playing with a choir was really unusual and interesting. The whole festival was really good overall and it was really cool to see how a variety of musicians worked with a choir . There are a few videos on YouTube which are a bit too embarrassing to post on here but here are some really nice photos of Dad and I taken by Stevek Photography (website linked below).
I’m also really enjoying Teenage Fanclub who everyone told me I’d like for ages and I, in the way that only teenagers do, told them that they were talking rubbish. They were right and I was wrong! So I’m going to leave this post with one of my favorite songs of theirs which is the final song from Bandwagonesque, probably my most played Teenage Fanclub album.
This week I have spent too much time trying to learn how to play the recorder part in Belle and Sebastian’s Boy With The Arab Strap. At some point this may well find it’s way on to the internet.
When I wasn’t playing recorder or otherwise distracted, I discovered this brilliant compilation. The Rough Trade Indiepop ’09 compilation is packed full of more recent indie-pop gems. 2009 was clearly a good year for the genre with The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart and Veronica Falls making their debut amongst others. Acts also to feature include the I-see-what-you-did-there-with-your-name act named Moscow Olympics with a nice number complete with strings and cool people who hang out in Glasgow, AKA Los Campesinos!
Also, you should totally check out Bruising (who I discovered on account of a Waxahatchee t-shirt being worn by a member of the band) because they are cool and have great taste in band tees.