Saturday, 28 April 2012

Extraordinary Swag And A Mouth Full Of Gold

Just a quick few words, I've been so busy revising lately. I've been reading so much French recently that I have genuinely begun talking to myself in the language. Oh mon dieu. Here's a few songs that I've been playing the heck out of when having study breaks, singing in the mirror.

Pyrite (Fools Gold)
Frank Ocean

ASAP Rocky

No Church In The Wild
Jay Z & Kanye West ft. Frank Ocean

Quelle Surprise (Mols, seriously, quit it with the constant French) Frank Ocean has appeared again. He's just too perfect. I love Pyrite, his voice is so beautiful with the melancholy chord progression. Also, Goldie and No Church In The Wild are the perfect songs to blast through your speakers with their similarly addictive and constant basslines.

P.S. thankyou to Emily, Kate and Kendall from Trends With Benefits for the Versatile Blogger Award nomination.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Frank Ocean

"Hi" types Mollie from a laptop surrounded by French booklets, with a maths revision tab open amongst other social networking sites. As a means of procrastinating (well, I wasn't really doing much as I kind of got swept away by Frank's beautiful voice) I'm just  going to write about Frank Ocean.
I'm currently learning Frank's song 'White' from the OF Volume 2 tape on piano so I thought it would be appropriate to profess my undying love for this guy. He effortlessly oozes such a passion for the story being told through his songs, of which he lyricises so well; at only 24 years old he's written Beyonce's 'I Miss You' track amongst working with many other artists. Releasing his first mixtape, Nostalgia, Ultra in February 2011, Frank delighted many with his more laid back approach, particularly in contrast to his other Odd Future member's more 'hyphy' styles.

I adore Strawberry Swing. Frank poetically uses such open and honest lyrics such as 'spaceships are lifting off of a dying world' sung over a simplistic accompaniment that allows his melodic voice to envelope the reader into his music.

Thinking About You is a perfect example of Frank's range in vocals; with a gorgeous falsetto separating the verses. The wallowing synthetic sound in the background of lyrics about a love interest (cough, me) force listeners to hear the melody in his voice, the main focus in many of Frank's tracks. Well, when it's that good, why wouldn't it be?

Now enter the beautiful mind of Frank. Doesn't he look so handsome in his glasses?

"When I'm trying to make a song...even the parts that don't have's still really trying to make a photograph out of something that you can never see"

"I think we all change each others paths, you know. I don't know which law or idea that is in physics but I don't think any of us can live without affecting each other"

" Sonic goodies yo...sonic goodies. That's a weird word, goodies."

Friday, 20 April 2012

Coachella 2012

Coachella is at the top of my list for festivals to go to. Set in the lovely landscape of California with many artists performing under the setting sun who belong to a diverse line-up, it is the perfect music paradise. This year included an eclectic mix of The Black Keys' rock n roll anthems, the dance beats of David Guetta and even an incredibly realistic hommage to Tupac in the form of a hologram. Insane.

The first day of three day weekend was by far the greatest, in my opinion. The Arctic Monkeys played in the early evening and, as this video shows, were the always charismatic Yorkshire lads complete with their leathers and slicked back hair. An electric performance by The Black Keys covering all their greatest songs was later scheduled. Believe me, if I was there, there would be no stopping me from flailing about to the pounding beat coming from the ever so energetic Patrick on the drums. Another of my favourite artists, Frank Ocean, performed a mellow set on Friday that showed off his deep, buttery voice to at its best, even if there was a few technical difficulties. Full performance from Frank here (I got too excited when Tyler jumped on stage for Analog with his disposable camera).

Saturday also brought a range of musical styles. Bon Iver delighted fans with a beautiful performance of Skinny Love complete with a lovely subdued stage setting, Azealia Banks delivered an edgy performance of some skilled fast-rapping of which I just can't fathom how to do, and AWOLNATION showcased the amazing anthem of a song, Sail. However, the Sahara Stage was where it was at, I'm sure. David Guetta, Martin Solveig and Jacques Lu Cont were set to perform and get everyone raving on a Saturday night.

Yay! Yay! Yay! I have finally seen good quality video footage of The Weeknd in action. His captivating set infused with the electric sound on the Outside Stage looked fantabulous. As was apparent on Saturday's set list, big dance names surfaced again with Avicii, Nero and Calvin Harris all performing on the Sahara Stage. Florence and the Machine finished off the weekend on the outdoor stage, which I'm sure was as ethereal and enchanting as ever.

Images from the festival:
The Black Keys performing, Frank and Tyler, Alex Turner performing with the Arctic Monkeys, Azealia Banks and Florence Welch (love this photo)

Coachella is the perfect place for people to let their inner bohemian escape through their style.
images via harpersbazaarvoguehollywoodreporter

So I'm going to go and plan a massive trip to California to go to Coachella, laden in florals, feathers and sunnies. Coachella 2013, see you there baby.


Saturday, 14 April 2012

Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not

Sat on a train, gazing contemplatively at the rolling English countryside with the raspy tone of Alex Turner in my ear, I thought "Hey Mols, write something". Aah writing. Whatever happened to just writing? So here I am, poised with my lined paper and Biro in hand aloft the rickety fold down table ready to pour out my innermost thoughts. Well, not really. But I am going to review arguably the best album in the world.

Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
Arctic Monkeys
January 2006

Before the music even becomes part of a sound wave, the album cover (an unshaven man holding a cigarette to his mouth squinting smugly towards the camera lens) is already suggesting that the Arctic Monkeys are brewing up a storm of songs full of mischief and mayhem. The lyrics generally focus on many aspects of a night out; from being 'on the pull' to facing the bouncers of a nightclub and even to the troublesome acts of the youth, with the odd poetic lyric adding a hint of romance to the mix. Ever present are the memorable guitar riffs and addictive drum beats that cause even the stiffest person to tap their foot.

I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor
I'll always be fond of this track as it was the song that kick started my obsession with the Arctic Monkeys. Seemingly the most well known track on the album, it is a sure song to get me (as I'm sure many others) onto the dancefloor. The inescapable electric guitar introduction delves into the driven melody within the verse which then builds into a hyped up complete mosher of a song. Yes, mosher is my new word for songs that allow moshing to take place, or are moshable, per say.

Dancing Shoes
Although it's almost impossible to choose a favourite song by the Arctic Monkeys, Dancing Shoes is definitely one of my go-to tracks. Matt shows off the power of percussion with a compelling, hip gyrating driven beat as Alex sings "get on your dancing shoes, you sexy little swine" in his broad Yorkshire dialect. Oh, F.Y.I, he is totes talking to me there.

Still Take You Home
Presenting this track with the raw sound of an amplifier acclimatising and a tuning guitar, listeners are invited to enter a place in which songs are created and music is produced. The chords launch into another foot tapping song. With lyrics such as "you just probably areet but under these lights yo look beautiful" sung at a frenetic pace, Alex Turner uses his utterly charming voice to make generically unromantic lyrics cause girls to fall weak at the knees with the rebellious tone. Swoon.

When The Sun Goes Down
As the imperfect sound of the pick striking the strings of an acoustic guitar echoes, a voice singing wholesome lyrics starts off the song. Eh? Arctic Monkeys? Oh no, that isn't the Arctic Monkeys at all. Almost as soon as the stripped back music has begun, the mood deteriorates and the verse ends with the comment "he's a scum bag don't you know" reverting back to the 'I don't give a fuck' attitude that Alex Turner exudes effortlessly with his voice. A dischordent strike hits and we're off, hurled into a catchy riff and driving percussion force, immediately drawing Arctic Monkeys fans back to what we know best.

Six years on from it's release and I still consider Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not to be one of the best albums I have ever heard. The sheer abruptness of the lyrics sung in the addictive twang that Alex Turner uses to his advantage, the driving force of the drum beat pumping the songs along and the insanely cool style of guitar riffs and rhythms specific to the band create a perfect album.

Phew. Now my hand hurts but it's okay because my ears are well and truly satisfied.


Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Swim Deep

         King City
         Swim Deep

I caught wind of this Birmingham based band through the twitterverse last night as someone (possibly the coolest person I have ever obsessed over) mentioned that they were playing a gig. Being the nosey so and so that I am, I thought 'd see what the buzz was about and discovered this lovely song. It is the perfect 'summer by the lake' track with the line "the sun on my back it's a nice day" being repeated throughout. The combination of oohs, tambourines and such a relaxed drum beat is fantastico.

Friday, 6 April 2012


Uh Uh Uh Uh Uh Get The Theraflu.

Kanye West and DJ Khaled

Buzzing over this track like I don't know what. The repetitive electronic notes and pounding beat that Kanye always accompanies with his lyrics is just making me want to bust a move. Sadly, my mother is asleep so my cat sat next to me won't get to see me throwing some serious shapes. I sincerely hope you are lucky enough to break it down. Take it away.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

House Of Balloons

Okay, so I'm off for the Easter Holidays at the moment and I have literally not stopped listening to The Weeknd for the past two days. The Toronto based singer has such a mellowing voice with a velvet texture similar to the style of Ne-Yo yet he brings an edge with electronic beats that ripple below the lyrics. Focusing on the first album / mixtape that was released called House Of Balloons, the lyrics are mainly refer to topics such as love, lust, and drugs, for example.

The best song, in my opinion, is High For This. The echoing beat in the background of the melodic voice which eventually progresses into a subtley concealed drum and bass accompaniment is just fab. The Weeknd just has this way of producing such simplistic melodies and accompaniments that somehow become such an addictive listen.
However, I also love numerous songs by The Weeknd due to the down right sexiness of them. Uhuh. Wicked Games is a perfect example of this; aside from the gorgeous texture of his voice, the lyrics sample lines such as "let me motherfucking love you" and "take you down another level, get you dancing with the devil". This as well as the low, pulsating beat creates such a seductive atmosphere. This guy is literally making me fall in love with him just by hearing his music. Cœur de Pirate also did a cover of this song which was superb.

Personally, I find The Weeknd's tracks to be completely enchanting. A perfect example of this is displayed in the song Coming Down. Referring to 'coming down' from the high supplied by drugs, the singer's beautiful falsetto voice sets the atmosphere with the help of wolf howls echoing in the background. Although a little creepy, this is perfect to represent the state of mind that the character of the song is in.

So all in all, an all round fantastic artist. The Weeknd has mastered the art of taking a beat that would generally be labelled as hip-hop / RnB and applied it to lyrics with a diverse melody to create enchanting and compelling music. You can probably expect his other two albums / mixtapes to be making an appearance at some stage soon too.


p.s. I've got into tumblr again (after reclaiming it from my hacker who attempted to flog free starbucks vouchers!) so come say hi, if you would be ever so kind >  dirtyspecs < Merci Buckets :)

Monday, 2 April 2012


I'm going through a rather heavy phase of hip hop at the moment; Drake, Odd Future, Jay Z and Kanye - all the biggest rappers of the moment have been played on my laptop. My latest obsession (even if it didn't click for at least four months) is this song from Azealia Banks. Umhum, i've spent most of today perfecting the fast spoken lyrics. Quite productive in my eyes...hey, at least it beats maths revision i suppose.
What can i say? My music taste is so damn broad, you could practically squeeze the moon in between the opposite ends of the artists that i listen to.

p.s. On Saturday, my friends and I held a surprise party for (my best guy mate) Tim's birthday and it went perfectly! We'd been planning it for weeks. Myself and Rosie (another buddy) were sat with him in the car pulling up to the house and couldn't control our excitement; we were literally bouncing up and down whilst concealing our party poppers. He thought we were getting that excited about Nandos! Oh it was brilliant.