Friday, 29 November 2013

Music: 'Midnight Memories' Album Review

Who: One Direction
What: Midnight Memories
Favourite Songs: Happily, Half a Heart, Don't Forget Where You Belong, Midnight Memories

At an attempt to steer away from the rather 'vanilla' image they have One Direction's latest album 'Midnight Memories' is much rockier then their previous two, and while it's great to see the lads mature the overall sound is a tad messy.
As a self-confessed One Direction fan I had plan to listen to the album whether or not I liked the two tracks they released first, as it happens I loved both. Best Song Ever was a catchy pop tune and Story of My Life was a cute song with an Ed Sheeran meets Mumford and Sons feel to it.
There seems to be a great deal of influence from other musicians and bands throughout Midnight Memories and although it is ace that the guys are finding inspiration from others it seems that One Direction are trying to cover every genre of music they can.
Little Black Dress is more then reminiscent of The Beatles and the chorus of Midnight Memories sounds eerily like Def Leppards Pour Some Sugar On Me not to mention the speedy folky guitar playing that is the focus of both Happily and Through the Dark. In just four tracks we have the sound of 80's American rock, British 60's rock and modern folk-rock; it is a little confusing. However, at the same time all of said tracks are catchy, fun with brilliant lyrics and ever better vocals from the five guys. Although I find it frustrating that the album is a mix of different pop/rock genres I still love every single one of the songs on the album and that is no mean feat.
There is, of course, still some heart-felt One Direction ballads that will have us on swooning just check out You & I or Half a Heart that features lyrics such as 'Nothing can come between us/You and I/Not even the Gods above can separate the two of us,' and in the latter Zayn sings 'I'm half a heart without you/I'm half a man at best,' over the top of some delightful guitar strumming.
Annoyingly most people won't even bother to give this album a listen and that honestly is a shame because it is fair to say that, although at times it is a little all over the place, Midnight Memories is a mighty fine third album and shows the One Direction guys are heading in a positive direction. 

What 'Midnight Memories' does is cement the theory I have had for sometime now, One Direction are more McFly and Busted rather than JLS or N*Sync. But the real question is, will then follow in the footsteps of McFly or Busted?


Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Music: 5 Seconds of Summer Gig Review

Who: 5 Seconds of Summer
Where: KOKO, Camden
When: 26th November 2013
Best Songs: Lost Boy, Voodoo Doll, Over & Over
With over 1 million followers each on Twitter -as well as on their band account- over 900,000 fans on Facebook and over 500,000 subscribers to their YouTube channel you would not be surprised to know that 5 Seconds of Summer have a rather large, not to mention, dedicated following. You would, however, be surprised to know that the four guys (Ashton Irwin, Calum Hood, Luke Hemmings and Michael Clifford) are yet to officially release a single let alone an actual album. 
With little to no promotion their EP 'Unplugged' reached number 3 on the Australian iTunes chart. After such success in their home country (Australia) the four lads played a few shows here and there and drew interest from several record labels as well One Direction member Louis Tomlinson. Tomlinson contacted the boys and asked them to support his band on tour and, of course, 5 Seconds of Summer responded with a very excited YES.
9 months later One Direction's Take Me Home tour is over and Ashton, Calum, Luke and Michael are ready to make a name for themselves as 5 Seconds of Summer not just 'One Directions support act.'
Pop/Rock band Young Kato were on first (Made in Chelsea anyone?) and they offered a decent warm up with some catchy tunes.
A little later than expected 5 Seconds of Summer graced us with their presence and the crowd went wild. Literally. (They should have started at 8:30 pm but there were whispers among the crowd that Ashton; the drummer, had split his jeans moments before they were due on stage.)
They started off with possibly their most famous song; Out of My Limit that had everybody jumping and singing along, followed by Eighteen a new track that they have only performed a few times and Voodoo Doll, a favourite of mine that is not available to download anywhere. Next up was Lost Boy with a cute little speech from Luke (vocals and guitar) as he thanked all the fans for their support. He then performed the bands latest creation Wherever You Are all on his lonesome and it was a brilliant performance as that boys vocal talent is through the roof! We were then introduced to the other guys Calum on bass and vocals, Michael on guitar and vocals and Ashton on drums, each receiving the same insane level of screaming from the audience.
We were presented with 12 songs in total; two of them were covers (one of which was a rocky take on Teenage Dream that suited Calum’s voice down to a T) but only five of the songs are available to purchase online.
In fact the majority of the songs are yet to be recorded in a studio so if you want to give them a listen you have to scour YouTube for a decent live copy, this goes for Voodoo Doll, Over and Over, Good Girls are Bad Girls and Lost Boy. However, this doesn't change the fact that everybody in the crowd knows the lyrics and is singing them back to the boys. Although crowd interaction was a little limited (this is the guys first real solo gig in UK after all) the love the 5 Seconds of Summer 'family' have for the musicians is really quite magical and not dissimilar to the adoration Directioners have for the 1D boys but that does mean that there is some obsession that comes with it.
While the bond between the boys and the crowd is wonderful it comes with the price of crying/screaming/general hysteria and this can be a little off-putting. That would be the only downside; the extremely loud screaming, it is a constant. But would this be enough to put me off seeing them live again? Probably not. 5 Seconds of Summer are quite simply too talented, too friendly and too damn pretty to miss.

One thing is for sure is that these lads are undeniably musically gifted, they write all of their own songs and with the youngest being just 17 that is quite an achievement. The lyrics range from being flirty and fun to serious and sad but they are always relatable. 


Monday, 11 November 2013

Hello :)


I have decided to start a second blog :) I will be changing my original blog a little bit, check it out here, 'Pass the Candy' will mainly focus on celebrity fashion as well as fashion designers, fashion week and will also feature articles I write for The Upcoming.

This blog I have titled 'Pass the Cliché' will centre around my real life as well as high street, day-to-day fashion and some of my other interests such as beauty; make up reviews, products I love and hate, music; gig reviews, monthly playlists, literature; book reviews, up and coming novels and much more!
I used to write monthly updates on Pass the Candy and they were some of my most viewed posts (you crazy people) but for some reason I stopped doing them (I am also crazy.) So I will add a monthly update to this Pass the Cliché blog :D

I made the decision to start up a second blog in the Summer and I was going to wait until the new year but I have been to two gigs in the past week an they simply needed reviews! I am also contemplating setting up a Youtube account and doing videos on there. I have friends and family all around the country (York, Birmingham, Worcester, Bristol, Devon) so I thought it would be an ace way to keep them updated as I seriously suck at replying to messages and answering the phone. 

So, there we have it!
Stay tuned for updates in the New Year where the true magic begins. Oooooh.

Love ya,