Friday, November 14, 2014

Tove Lo - Queen of the Clouds

Tove Lo - Queen of the Clouds

Tove Lo (Ebb Tove Elsa Nilsson) is a Swedish singer from Stockholm who has been popping up everywhere as of late. I first encountered this gem on YouTube with her 2013 single Habits. You guys know me, give me a grungy girl, and I'm bound to give her music a chance; I'm very happy that I looked into this one!

Tove Lo released her debut EP (Truth Serum) in March of this year; however, I actually didn't get around to listening to it (besides on Pandora) until I already had my claws into her debut album Queen of the Clouds. I encourage everyone to give both a chance!
(Click the links! They'll take you to iTunes. You're welcome. ^-^)

Queen of the Clouds dropped on September 24th 2014 through Island Records. Two singles led up to the release of the album: Habits (Stay High) and Not on Drugs. So far, since the release, Talking Body has also been named a single. 
The album itself is split into three 'mini albums': The Sex, The Love, and The Pain; however, while listening, each section more or less resembles the other with a slightly different tone. Most of the themes (sex, drugs, sex, sex, sex, drugs) carry on throughout the entirety of the album.

As mentioned above, Tove sings a loooooooooooooooooot about drugs and sex. Trust me, I'm not complaining. It's just something to keep in mind. At times, the album is a psychedelic high with bright colors, pumping beats, and (sometimes) ridiculously fun lyrics; however, at times, Tove's songs are actually pretty depressing. 
It's a nice ride; it's thoroughly enjoyable actually. 
(Even if it is a little manic.)

Overall, the album is very strong. Tove's lyrics feel honest; it almost feels like she's trying to make you feel exactly how she's feeling. Granted, sometimes that can be a little hazy, grungy, and a little raving. I still feel however that the three sections are a little pointless. Most of the songs in each section carry the same themes, so I don't really see where the line is drawn. I have a feeling that after a few more listens, it will all become clearer.

I give the album **** out of 5 *'s!

My favorite songs are:
Talking Body
The Way That I am
Not on Drugs
This Time Around

The only song on the album that I didn't care for nearly as much as the others was Like Em Young; however, I can definitely see the appeal of the song, and I feel like it will grow on me. As of right now, I don't care for it all that much, but hey, you can't ALWAYS like them all, huh?

As always, thanks so much for reading guys! Let me know if you check this gal out, and let me know what you think of her music!

*Support these artists! This is their art, and we are lucky enough to be able to enjoy it!*

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Music to Write to: BANKS - Goddess

Music to Write to: BANKS - Goddess

Why hello there again guys and gals. I'm here today with another album to review in my 'Music to Write to' column.

First things first, Jillian Rose Banks, AKA, BANKS, is a relatively new artist who has basically only been on the scene since 2013; however, she has apparently been writing music since the age of fifteen. 
(Thank you Wikipedia.)

She currently has two extended plays: Fall Over & London as well as her debut album Goddess. If you can't tell, I'm going to be reviewing her debut album; though, I highly recommend that everyone go check out her EPs as well!

Goddess was released on September 5th, 2014 through Harvest Records
So far, the album contains four singles: Brain, Goddess, Drowning, and Begging for Thread.
Two promotional singles have also been released: Change and Alibi.

The standard version of the album has fourteen songs in its track list while the deluxe edition has a total of eighteen. I will be reviewing the deluxe edition because, well, I can. (:

The album opens with Alibi.
Alibi is definitely a strong song to start with. BANKS' vocals stay on the higher spectrum, and I have to say that she sounds lovely. Her voice is smokey, often dark despite the pitch, and this gives the song a lovely contrast in feel. 
She sings, "I promise I'm usually better than this, and now I can't even recognize myself anymore; you turned me into this."

As the album continues, it quickly becomes blatantly evident that this gal has some serious writing talent to back her up. A quick check to Wikipedia shows me that BANKS is credited as a writer for each and every song on the album. 
By the time, This is What it Feels Like rolls around, you find yourself bumping with the rhythm, following each and every word she spills through the air. BANKS holds the ability to make you feel how each and every line of her songs is supposed to be felt, and I deeply enjoy every moment of it.

The album ends on Under the Table on the standard edition; however, on the deluxe edition, the closing song is Bedroom Wall. Both tracks are incredibly strong; though, I admit that I favor the latter. 
"You know how I see you; we should be one. 'Cause I already told you, baby. Last time I tried to sing you this song, couldn't get the words out, baby. My arms are open for you, look at me now." 
In Bedroom Wall, she embraces the love she's been so torn about during the album's journey. Despite Goddess having such a lusciously dark tone, BANKS' vocals carry so much more emotion than pain. Her range is phenomenal.

On a whole, I HIGHLY recommend this album. It's a beautiful piece of work that breathes life into a stagnant pool of over-processed pop queens and princesses. I promise that you won't regret the decision!

Favorite Tracks:  Goddess, Waiting Game, Brain, Stick, Fuck Em Only We Know, Drowning, Change, Warm Water, Fall Over, Before I Ever Met You, Bedroom Wall.

Least Favorite Track: None. I can't find a single track that I don't like!!

Rating: * * * * * (out of 5 *'s)

Please support this lovely artist by purchasing this album! I have included the iTunes link, and I will do so again!

BANKS is going to be a lovely addition to my ever growing writing playlist!

Let me know what you guys and gals think of the album! What was your favorite song? Thanks so much for reading!

- With love, Mason

Monday, November 3, 2014

I'm Not Dead!!


So, life has been sort of a strange, new lately. My boyfriend and I separated from our friend and old roommate, packed up our tiny apartment, and moved in with our collective BEST FRIEND into a tiny old house!

It's been an adjustment.

That's for sure.

I have been promoted at my place of work, and my boyfriend is making more money as well at his new job, so everything is coming together nicely but slowly.
Very slowly.

Speaking of my lovely boyfriend, he's actually buying me a laptop! (I'm currently bumming his.) So, I'm super douper excited to get back into the swing of writing, blogging, youtubing.
The whole shabang.

I actually have a pile of albums that I'm listening through in order to prepare some new music reviews for you guys.

Thanks (always and forever) for being so patient with me. It really means the world!!