Category Archives: Uncategorized

Reminder to Breathe

Finals are over!! It’s finally summer!! I should not be as stressed out as I am right now!! Regardless, it was super convenient that I took entertainment reporting and writing with the one and only Holly Gleason this semester, so I have a record review written for you already — and bonus: it’s been graded.

Album: Lungs
Artist: Florence + The Machine

Lungs

Atmospheric might be one adjective you could use to describe Florence + The Machine’s debut; forceful, another. Frontwoman Florence Welch shows her fantastical side on Lungs, and she has enough talent to make it worth listening to. Her fantasy worlds create floating sensations, but her voice keeps listeners grounded as she sings about death, violence, and lonliness.

Though other female artists of her caliber prefer heavier sounds — Amy likes horns, Adele is partial to piano — Welch prefers harps, chimes and bells. The airiness found on Lungs could easily pull listeners out to a darker version of Neverland with Peter Pan, but use of heavy drums and Florence’s pipes keeps her audience on the ground wishing instead.

Lofty though the album may be, Welch’s lyrics tend to tell twisted stories. The Jack-White-esque single “Kiss With A Fist” is a stand out sonically, but it sets the lyrical tone. It seems easygoing enough, but lines like “A kick in the teeth is good for some, but a kiss with a fist is better than none,” make light of a tumultuous relationship as an angry Florence sings about mutual domestic violence.

The morose “Girl With One Eye” is an even better example. The track, the majority of which is comprised with a lone, echoing electric, deep drums and cymbal work, hovers above listeners as Welch slurs about cutting out some bitch’s eye for pissing her off.

Musically lighter tracks like “I’m Not Calling You A Liar” provide the perfect gust of wind to sustain wishful flight, though. Sleigh bells accompany light piano to open the track, and a harp joins in at the chorus to complete the atmospheric feel. In “My Boy Builds Coffins,” Welch crafts a dark story that brings listeners to a faraway fantasy world, while the band’s use of rolling guitar riffs, light harp runs and airy cymbal work creates the scenery.

Welch’s stories wouldn’t be so captivating if not for her voice, but that’s something Welch knows. The effect found on Lungs isn’t something many bands can craft successfully, but Florence + The Machine play to their strengths to create a strong debut.

Honorable Mentions: Dog Days Are Over, Howl, My Boy Builds Coffins, Hurricane Drunk

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We Need To Talk About The Grammys

I feel like this post is obligatory, given the weight of the award show that took place last night. As always, I had some major problems with the award show, but if you kept up with my live tweeting (@notreallyindie — I know you didn’t), you know that overall I was actually very pleased with the show.

So let’s get the obvious out of the way first. Holy sh**: Kendrick Lamar. I will be the first to admit that I don’t listen to Kendrick Lamar on a regular basis. Hell, I don’t listen to rap on a regular basis. But Kendrick Lamar has unmistakeable talent that even someone who lives under a rock could recognize.

That’s why I was so happy when he took home the Grammy for Best Rap Album. It’s why I felt a new faith in the award itself when he won Best Rap Song for “Alright.” It’s why he definitely deserved to win for Best Rap Performance. And it’s why I was fully expecting him to take home Album of the Year. Especially after that performance.

For those of you who didn’t see it, it was FIRE. Literally, there was fire on the stage. But the fire wasn’t the most important part. Maybe it was the way he came out on stage — in chains — that made the biggest statement. Maybe it was the way his spoken-word-influenced track “The Blacker The Berry” flew from his lips. Maybe it was the bonfire that raged behind him. Maybe it was the word “COMPTON,” written in black text against the blank continent of Africa. His message wasn’t easily missed.

 

 

So. Can someone PLEASE explain to me why he lost to Taylor Swift? Nothing about The Grammys has pissed me off more. I thought I was mad when they cut off Queens of the Stone Age at the 56th Awards, but this takes the cake.

Those of you who know me know exactly how I feel about T-Swift. I don’t exactly try to hide my feelings about her. But I don’t think my opinion would be different if I loved her. 1989 just didn’t deserve Album of the Year. It wasn’t even close to being the best album in the category. Not against Chris Stapleton, not against Alabama Shakes, and definitely not against Kendrick Lamar.

And as much as I loved her dig against Kanye (though she seemed a little self-righteous when she accepted the award, in my opinion), I maintain my hope that one day just being Taylor Swift won’t be enough for Taylor Swift anymore.

Kendrick Lamar wasn’t the only one who got snubbed either. As far as Best New Artist, well — it was a loaded category to say the least. I really think Cmeghan-trainor-could-barely-get-through-her-best-new-artist-acceptance-speechourtney Barnett should have taken it, but I don’t feel as offended with Meghan Trainor’s win as I do Swift’s. Trainor does have talent, and her acceptance “speech” made me cry (I’m a sympathetic cryer, what can I say?).

Now, as far as the things The Grammys did right, well, even I’ll admit there were a few. Lady Gaga’s performance, for one. Between the Oscars last year, the national anthem last week, and now her David Bowie tribute, we know that we can expect something from Gaga. And it’s going to be big. No one can deny she’s talented anymore and she no longer needs to show up to award shows in an egg. The Bowie Medley was perfect for her, and her work ethic and dedication to the music really showed last night.

The 58th GRAMMY Awards - Show
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 15: Recording artist Lady Gaga performs onstage during The 58th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on February 15, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/WireImage)

Brittany Howard also killed it when Alabama Shakes performed their Grammy-winning “Don’t Wanna Fight.” The category for best rock song was absolutely packed, but I can’t help get the warm fuzzies when I think of their win. I’ve been with them from the beginning, after all. And “Thunderbitch” proved that rock isn’t dead when she screeched into her microphone — something I’m sure gave the audience chills.

Christ Stapleton also had a successful night, picking up two Grammys. He deserved both, if not more. It’s nice to see a great artist like him emerge. I really think he’s bringing country back to where it should be.

Some other highlights? Well, Skrillex plays guitar like a badass and so does Johnny Depp, and Adele still made everyone cry despite the major sound issues during her performance. Also, she is so classy. I love how she took the moment after her performance to shoutout to Kendrick. I bet she thinks he got snubbed too.

So, what are your thoughts on The Grammys? What were your favorite moments? Share here, Facebook, or Twitter! I’d love to know everyone’s opinions on Album of the Year. I mean, I can’t be the only one who’s mad about this, right?

“The Wonderwall Album”

Happy Almost February! I hope you’re not stressed out to your eyeballs like I am! I made a New Years’ resolution to post once every 2 weeks at least. I’m pretty sure this doesn’t hold to that, but at least this is #2 for January, right?

I’ve got a good one for this week. It was supposed to be my last post but I scrapped it for TLSP and rewrote it anew for today.

Album: (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?
Artist: Oasis

Oasis_-_(What's_The_Story)_Morning_Glory_album_cover

Why am I writing about Oasis? Good question. I guess I like a challenge. But what can you say about Oasis that hasn’t already been said? Nothing, if we’re being honest.

But I like to think of myself as a one stop shop for album information, so maybe if you’re reading you’ll learn something you didn’t know already.

Oasis was obviously a staple of the 90s. They’re one of those bands that makes me cry every time. Their albums have been hailed as record-breakers, they’ve made it on too many “greatest” lists to count, and they were one of the greatest acts in Britpop ever. They were big from the beginning — they formed in 1991, and their debut album, Definitely Maybe, was the fastest selling debut album in the UK at the time of its release.

Now, a little history about the band’s members: The band was initially formed by Liam Gallagher as “The Rain,” but eventually they invited his older brother Noel to join. Noel came on as lead guitarist with the agreement that he would do all of the writing for the band. Both brothers were big partiers and they had quite the reputation for their sibling rivalry, and one brother or the other was constantly leaving the band for some reason or another. The band swapped several drummers over the years, but more people were concerned with the fights Liam and Noel would get into.

Oasis also had a reputation in the media for their rivalry with Damon Albarn’s band Blur (see also the Gorillaz), since both bands were heading the Britpop movement. From what I understand, Noel and Albarn have put aside their differences since the 90s.

Eventually, the band broke up in 2009. Liam went on to form Beadey Eye and Noel went on to form Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds (who happen to be playing at the Ryman on my birthday, hint hint Mom and Dad).

Also, for the purposes of discussing Oasis’ music, I feel like I should mention that Noel Gallagher and Oasis have successfully been sued at least once for plagiarism.

But on to what you guys really want to hear about, right? The Wonderwall Album.

Just kidding. It’s called (What’s the Story) Morning Glory? and it’s awesome. It was released in October of 1995 (I mean, how 90s can you get?) on Creation Records and it sold over 300,000 copies in it’s first week. In fact, as of 2014, it was rank as the fifth best-selling album in the UK, and at the time, it was the third fastest-selling album in the UK. It peaked at #4 on the Billboard 200 and made it in the top 10 all over the world. Now that’s just impressive. Rolling Stone even included it on their 100 Best Albums of the 90s and their 500 Greatest Albums of All Time lists.

The album included many of the band’s most well-known singles, including “Wonderwall,” “Don’t Look Back In Anger,” “Some Might Say,” and “Champagne Supernova.” I’d argue those are the only four Oasis songs a lot of people know. They aren’t the best on the album though — not to say they aren’t good, because they are.

I really find the material on WTSMG? fascinating. I can’t help but feel incredibly nostalgic every time I listen to it. Maybe it’s Noel’s lyrics — “Where were you while we were getting high?” — but there’s something about them that always captures your attention. Of course, Noel himself says most of the lyrics on the album were gibberish, but Liam disagrees. Even if they don’t mean anything to Noel, they still mean something — but let’s be honest, no one’s really sure what that meaning might be.

Regardless, his writing style mimics that of John Lennon better than anyone I’ve ever seen (and that might be because he’s ripped off a few of his lines here and there, but I digress). Lines like “Slowly walking down the hall/faster than a cannonball,” found in “Champagne Supernova” are exactly what I’m talking about. And he’s so consistent. “Don’t Look Back In Anger,” undoubtedly a tribute to John Lennon’s “Imagine” (it opens with the same piano chords, after all) does it best with lines like “So I’ll start a revolution from my bed/Cause you said the brains I had went to my head.” I’m pretty sure Noel got that one from Lennon himself, actually.

As AllMusic’s Stephen Thomas Erlewine put it: “This is where his genius lies: He’s a thief and doesn’t have many original thoughts, but as a pop/rock melodicist he’s pretty much without peer.”

And he’s right. Noel might not always be completely original, but he’s easily one of the best songwriters of his generation. He brings the best from the artists he idolizes and mixes them together to create a movement. His soaring melodies and clever lyrics combine to give the album so much variance, and it all culminates into these feelings you’re left with as a listener as image after image is painted for you with words. There’s a ring of sadness to a lot of the material that I know I’m not imagining.

It definitely means something.

And while I generally think Noel Gallagher was the better vocalist (who doesn’t love the chorus in “Don’t Look Back In Anger”?), I’ll be upfront and say that without Liam’s vocals this album wouldn’t be the same. He’s forceful when he needs to be, cheeky when it’s called for, and his voice adds to the nostalgia I feel every time I listen. He brings something different to the words than I think Noel would — and that’s the beauty of it.

Oasis had a tumultuous run, but I think that’s why they rock with the best of them. Liam and Noel both have a lot of passion for the music and they both poured their hearts and souls into it. And I think that’s the reason for the nostalgia — their feelings take hold of yours. And that’s the genius found in (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?

 

What are your thoughts on (What’s the Story) Morning Glory? Love it? Hate it? Comment here, Facebook or Twitter! Until next time, keep listening.

Honorable Mentions: “Cast No Shadow,” “Some Might Say,” “She’s Electric,” “Morning Glory”

Information pulled from Oasis’s band page, AllMusic.com, and Billboard.com

Understated Indeed

Oh, New Years. Last year I’m pretty sure I made the resolution to keep up with my blog, and that went fantastically unwell. So I’ll make the same resolution this year, but honestly, I can’t promise anything cause I’m taking 18 hours next semester (because obviously I must love stressing myself out).

Honestly, this post was originally going to be about Oasis. I’ve been feeling hella nostalgic for the 90s lately and sometimes when I need a good cry I listen to “Champaign Supernova” and just eat my feelings. But plans change, and I decided to write about The Last Shadow Puppets instead,  because 2016 is the year of their return and I’ve been a little obsessed with The Age of the Understatement lately.

I’ve literally been working on this post for like a week now. It was tough to write so cut me some slack on this one.

Album: The Age of the Understatement
Artist: The Last Shadow Puppets

TLSP

The Last Shadow Puppets are undoubtedly one of my favorite supergroups — if you can call them that. The project is something Arctic Monkey’s Alex Turner and his bestie Miles Kane (of The Little Flames at the time) threw together after both bands toured together in 2007. While both of them are members of successful groups, I have a hard time classifying TLSP as a supergroup honestly. I just don’t think of them like I do, say, Them Crooked Vultures. I sort of like to imagine Turner and Kane are just BFFs who like to rock out together — sort of like me and my bestie, if we had musical talent.

While Turner and Kane initially started writing for the project in 2007 while touring together, the project didn’t really come together until 2008. Most of The Age of the Understatement was recorded with producer/drummer James Ford at Blackbox Studios in France, and with the help of Final Fantasy (AKA Owen Pallett) and the London Metropolitan Orchestra, the album became the best compilation of music you didn’t realize you need in your life.

The Age of the Understatement dropped in April of 2008 on Domino Records and the band embarked on a brief tour. A few shows were played with a 16 piece orchestra, which is just hella cool. The project has such a unique sound — like James Bond come to life — and seeing them with an orchestra would just be magical.

Speaking of the sound though, the duo list their main influences as Scott Walker (the musician, not the politician) and early Bowie, but the cunning lyrics found on the album are obviously influenced by John Lennon and several other late 60s artists as well. Ultimately, the album comes together to sounds like something you’d hear in a spy movie. The sweeping strings coupled with that 60s rock band sounds remind you of secret agents, long dresses, big jewelry — the kind of glamour and suave style that you’d find in a 60s film. It takes you on an adventure to another place, but as Heather Phares put it in her review, the album doesn’t overstay its welcome. Most of the tracks on the album fall short of the three-minute mark and it ultimately makes for a short listen.

To start, The Age of the Understatement kicks off with its title track. There’s a kind of urgency to the album — it begins with a fierce tympani roll and the forceful vocals you’d expect from Alex Turner. But the whole album isn’t like that, though it maintains its rigor. The album lightens up with “Standing Next To Me,” but the sweeping “Calm Like You” reminds the listener of just how awesome Alex Turner is at his vocals. Lines like “Accidents and toffee drops/And thinking on the train,” keep the 60s dream alive with the addition of a great horn section, and Turner handles the vast chorus like it’s nothing.

And let’s just be honest for a moment here. Sam Smith, you can step aside. TLSP would school you in a 007-off any day, despite having never actually written a Bond theme. In fact, the ever so suave “My Mistakes Were Made For You” could probably even hold its own against Adele (blaspheme, I know). The elusive femme fatale that seems to haunt many of the songs on the album seems like she would fit in perfectly as a Bond Girl. As Turner sings “And in the backroom of a bad dream she came/and whisked me away enthused,” you can just imagine the type of girl she is. Lines like “And it, the fame that put words in her mouth/She couldn’t help but spit them out/Innocence and arrogance entwined, in the filthiest of minds” only add to the picture. Add in a few harmon mutes, toss in the strings, throw in a key change. It’s all there: the perfect Bond theme.

Admittedly, some tracks such as “Separate And Ever Deadly” and “I Don’t Like You Anymore” sound like something the Arctic Monkeys might play, but The Last Shadow Puppets manage to separate themselves from the other members’ separate projects. The album manages to keep up it’s tempo but varies stylistically in a way that keeps everything interesting. In short, it’s a work of art.

No wonder everyone is so excited for their return. They’ve only been teasing us for 8 years now.

I’ll attach a video below for those who are interested in the band. Until next time (because who knows when that will be), keep listening. And watch out for The Last Shadow Puppets’ new album, coming soon!

Honorable Mentions: The Chamber, Black Plant, The Meeting Place (or just Meeting Place, depending on where you live), Time Has Come Again (or The Time Has Come Again, depending on where you live)

 

*This post contains a link to Heather Phares’ review of the album, found on AllMusic.com

 

A Secondhand Kind of Couple

Well… It isn’t Wednesday. But when was the last time I actually updated on a Wednesday?

Truth be told I haven’t really been interested in writing for awhile. April was a really busy month because of the end of the semester and it’s hard to make yourself write something for pleasure when you’re too busy writing for pain school. And then finals were over… and I wanted to veg out on Netflix (which believe me, I’m basically a pro at by now). And then May happened. I’m training for a triathlon, so that takes up all of my time. That and work. I work a lot.

Also, you wouldn’t even believe the work it takes to pick out an album. Sure, people suggest things all the time — but if I’m not feeling it believe me it doesn’t happen. Having said that, I promise I’ll get to Rated R at some point Linds. For my first post in like a month, I picked an album I’ve honestly been meaning to write about since I started this blog.

My writing is a little rusty, so cut me some slack.

Album: Secondhand Rapture                                                         Artist: MS MR

MS MR

I’ve mentioned this group before. If you read my Who Covered Who? post from earlier this year, you might recognize them from their cover of Arctic Monkey’s “Do I Wanna Know?”

MS MR (pronounced Miz Mister if you’re looking to be a snob about it or you’re totally clueless) is a duo from New York that formed in 2011. The duo consists of vocalist and multicolored hair aficionado Lizzy Plapinger and producer Max Hershenow. That pretty much covers what I know about them; I know more about Lizzy than Max — she’s the co-founder of Neon Gold Records, an indie label that has worked with artists like Charlie XCX, Ellie Goulding, Gotye, and Haim, and she grew up in London and still doesn’t have an accent. A shame, really.

But back to the duo: MS MR is one of those groups that originally rose to fame on the internet. In fact, the “Secondhand” in the album title Secondhand Rapture refers to the fact that most people get things from the internet these days. They released their first album, Secondhand Rapture, in May of 2013 (two years ago yesterday, actually) and it was released by Columbia Records. The duo actually wrote and produced all of their own songs with a little extra help from Tom Elmhirst, which I find pretty impressive despite the fact that Plapinger has misgivings about her abilities as a lyricist.

Secondhand Rapture is an interesting album. I’ve seen it described as “indie pop,” “alt rock,” “dream pop,” and “dark wave.” The latter two seem to be most accurate to me. Don’t ask me where the rock comes in, because this is definitely a pop album by a pop group. The album actually comes along with a visual aid that can be found on the group’s website called “Secondhand Captures.” I watched them all, but I won’t go into too much detail. I’ll post a link at the bottom if you’re interested in watching, but I don’t think the music needs them. The sounds on the album make it visual enough on it’s own in an odd way.

The overall sound on Secondhand Rapture actually has quite the variety. To me the album has a lofty sound and it sort of reminds me of the night sky or a dewey morning. It’s dark and rolling, but the tracks themselves are actually quite different from one another. Songs like “Hurricane,” “Dark Doo Wop,” and “BTSK” tend to have that sultry darkness I mentioned, but tracks like “Salty Sweet” and “Think of You” offset it with an upbeat and worldly sound. More than one critic has compared the duo to Florence + The Machine (and that also includes my parents) and even some compare them to Lana Del Rey (except better because I can’t stand Lana Del Rey). To me, MS MR’s Secondhand Rapture has the best of both worlds.

And despite Lizzy’s lack of confidence in her words, all of her songs manage to carry some kind of theme and I think she conveys it very well. In “Fantasy,” Oscar Wilde’s famous quote “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all” is payed homage with the lines “Existing and living/Are not the same” as Plapinger grapples with living in her own head. She also has knowledge of rock history, as she broods on the 27 Club in “Twenty Seven.”

Overall, Secondhand Rapture received mixed reviews. Andy Gill of The Independent said it had a “hollow ring” and Laura Snapes of Pitchfork only gave the album a 6/10. But critics like Laurence Green of Music OMH loved it. Personally, I think the album is a pretty great debut. MS MR is a group that came out strong and knows where they’re weak which is something I can respect. Someone else must have liked it to, because the album peaked at 24 on the US Top Alternative Albums, which isn’t bad if I do say so myself.

If you like MS MR (which Erin: you will), Secondhand Rapture can be found on Spotify and iTunes. Their new single “Painted” can be found there as well! It’s different from this album, but it’s good. They’ve maintained their integrity so far.

Like this album? Hate this album? Have a request? Let me know in the comments here, Facebook, or Twitter! Until Wednesday or Thursdayish, keep listening 🙂

Secondhand Captures — found on MS MR’s website

Exams Exams Exams

So, I didn’t update last week. And well, I’m not updating this week either. But I can explain myself! You see, I have a lot of things due December 2nd. And a lot of these things are things I haven’t even started yet, because c’mon. What’s college without a little bit (whole semester long) procrastination? I’m going to a concert on Friday, and I’ll be seeing The 1975. I’ve had a whole post about them pretty much written in my head all week, but being in my head is not the same as being on the internet, and quite frankly putting it on the internet takes far too much work. So: next week, December 3rd, I promise to write about the 1975. And after that, on December 10th, I will write about some more JT, and after that, on December 17th (the day I see Fleetwood Mac), I will write about Fleetwood Mac. So that’s what I have in store for you, and I’m sorry these next two weeks don’t work out. Until then, listen to the song “Last Day of Magic” by a band called The Kills. Until December 3rd, keep listening!

There. I made it easy for you. You’re welcome.

Picking the Perfect Concert Buddy

So I have a bio test tomorrow and didn’t pick an album for this week, so instead I’m going to help you out here. This week’s post is on finding that special someone. You know who I’m talking about: the person you name your official “concert buddy.”

rock concert

Now, your concert buddy can’t be just anyone; there are lots of characteristics you have to consider before you just go to a concert with someone. Here’s my official checklist:

1. Do they like the same music as you?

So, this one may seem a little obvious, but you’d be surprised. Just because you share a love of one band does not mean that you have the same music tastes. You have to be careful; agreeing to go to a concert with someone could find you on a two hour drive with nothing but this person you thought was your friend and a ton of music that you can’t stand.

2. Are you on the same page with travel arrangements?

So if you really like to go to concerts, chances are you’ve had at least a two hour drive ahead of you before a great show. I mean I’ve met people who’ve driven upwards of seven or eight hours to see their favorite group, and this travel thing is where your CB is really important. If you can’t agree on how to get there, who’s driving, and where you’re staying, then your CB isn’t really your CB and you need a new one. My CB helps pay for gas because I always drive, so she’s probably better than yours.

3. Copiloting skills. These are important.

Everyone knows that on the way to the concert you need two things: navigation, and appropriate music to get you super hype for the awesome time you’re about to have. Take your potential CB on a test run to make sure that not only can they read a GPS and give you appropriate warning to all directions (which my CB does very well cause we’ve done this so often), but also plays appropriate music. These skills are especially important on the drive back home, because let’s face it, PCD sets in fast and you don’t want to be too depressed on your drive back from what will forever go down as the greatest night of your life. My CB even brings healthy and delicious vegan snacks on our trips, so (again) she’s also probably a better copilot than yours.

4. Is he/she a fun person? How fun? Too fun?

Funness in a concert buddy is important. For example, I like to dance. So does my CB. This works out well because not all people like to dance (which is stupid) and by dancing together we both look like idiots together. An appropriate CB will have the same funness level as you. However, you don’t want a CB who is beyond your funness level because you will feel unfun and they will feel too fun and both of you will be sad. This conversation is a very important pre-concert conversation.

5. Is he/she determined? A complainer? Too hard core?

General admission. Both amazing and completely terrible at the same time. With a general admission ticket, you either show up on time and end up in the back or get down to business and end up in the front. Some people don’t mind being in the back during general admission. If you are not one of these people, you’re CB shouldn’t be one. You don’t want to make someone wait in line who doesn’t want to wait because their (insert unflattering word for complaints of your choice) will bring you down and they’ll be miserable. On the flip side, your CB shouldn’t be anyone more hard core than you. If you don’t want to wait from 5am to 7pm, then your CB can’t be someone who does because both of you will be disappointed. My concert buddy and I tend to be on the same page about this one. Depending on the hot/cold levels of outside, 4pm seems to be our time to shine and stand in line. And yes, we did stand in the rain one time.

6. Is this person generally friendly?

Friendliness is very important in a concert buddy, because (especially in general admission) you tend to make other friends at concerts. If your CB is no chill, the people around you that are essential to the “let’s make it to the front” alliance will be no chill, and you’ll get shut down and end up pushed to the back.

 

As I said before, that “special someone” can’t just be any someone. Concert buddies are very important, so choose carefully when picking the perfect concert buddy.

Already have a concert buddy? Share your favorite concert buddy stories here, Facebook, or Twitter!

As always, keep listening!! (And going to concerts)

URL Change

So let me just say, things got complicated. I HAVE CHANGED MY URL. As of right now, this means that if you click the “HOME” tab on the top of my page, it will take you to the wrong page (at least for me) and I’m trying to figure out what that is about. I have fixed it so that it will redirect you to the correct site.

 yourbrothersmusic.wordpress.com  will link to THIS site, as that last one does not work any longer. The link is now youroldersistersmusic.wordpress.com!

So we’ll see how this goes. If anyone has any trouble finding me, comment here, Facebook, or Twitter, and tell your friends! But I guess if you’re commenting you already found me so that was kind of redundant.

Anywho, my next album is gonna be pretty sweet, so tune in on Wednesday! In addition, check out this link here, as it might explain a few things if you aren’t up to speed: www.yourolderbrother.com (Your Older Brother’s Music Blog)

That Awkward Moment

Hello all! So I know it’s Sunday, and I usually post on Wednesday, but I have a special announcement:

Your Older Brother’s Secret Stash is now Your Older Sister’s Secret Stash!!

Why you ask? I’ll tell you.

The other night, I received a comment on my blog from a fellow blogger that directed me to his blog — Your Older Brother’s Music Blog. So that’s ironic. Great minds think alike I guess. Anyway, he was really cool about it and we commented back and forth for a bit and out of respect for his blog (he’s been doing this a lot longer than I have, after all) we both agreed that it would be better if I changed my blog name to avoid confusion.

If you’re interested in checking out his site, here’s the link: http://www.yourolderbrother.com/

You can check out his twitter at @OlderBrotherSam

I’m posting his blog and a few other links on the side, and maybe even a poll if I get around to it, so check it out! As always, keep listening!

One last thing — should I change my url? Feedback is appreciated.

UPDATE: The URL for this site has now changed to youroldersistersmusic.wordpress.com

Let’s Talk In 20 Years

Wow. Am I late this week, or what? I don’t really have an excuse other than I didn’t decide what I wanted to do until literally today, and then I decided I wanted to spend more time on it, and then I had to go to work. So unfortunately, I’m not going to write about an album this week because it’s one in the morning and I just can’t do an album justice this last minute. Instead, I’m going to do something else. Now, this something that I’m about to do kind of goes against my internet morals: I’m about to write an unseen reply to a specific celebrity regarding the music industry. Feel free to stop reading right here.

If you chose to continue, here is the original article: Taylor Swift’s Op-Ed for the Wall Street Journal

Dear Miss Swift,

I’d like to start my letter by saying that I too am an optimist for the future of music. I’d also like to say that you, as a musician, probably are more informed than I ever will be/ever could be with my status: that of a fan.

However, I’d like to bring such a perspective to light: that of a fan.

In your written article, published in the Wall Street Journal, you mentioned the “value of an artist,” and your opinions on what is happening in the music industry regarding said value. I would like to say that I can see where you’re coming from with this opinion; I can’t.

When artists offer free music to their fans, it’s not just a promotional deal — at least not for us. You mentioned yourself the idea of artists and fans and the “relationship” they build. I fully agree with this. As a fan, I can list off countless musicians who have helped me personally through their music. Despite the fact that I have never met Dave Matthews, I can say (as a fan) that I feel as if I can relate to some of the feelings he has. It’s a connection, not just between the artist and the listener, but among followers of the same artist. Music is what brings people together. So to us (the fans), free music feels more than just a promotional deal; free music is a way that our artists — our friends — can reach out to us. To us (the fans), it feels like a “thank you,” and not just a money grab.

You see, I can’t agree that artists devalue or under appreciate themselves by releasing free music to the public. If anything, it’s a measure of their confidence. They certainly aren’t benefiting financially from releasing a free download or CD. But they have faith in themselves — in their music — to draw in an audience through their music. Music which might not have reached as many ears as it had with the pretty price of $1.29 attached to it.

I do, however, agree fully about the value of an album. We live in what I like to call the “singles” generation. The generation in which, instead of buying a full album and listening to it all the way through, buys radio single after single after single. This makes me sad (as a fan). An album is what showcases what the artist has to offer. You can’t simply judge an artist based on one radio single — there is so much more beyond that! But how does this tie in to the idea of free music?

Take The Neighbourhood, for example. Whether you love them or you hate them, you can’t deny what they’re doing is cool. They are the first band to release an entire, free mixtape (at least, that’s what they’re claiming; if you have evidence they aren’t the first, please inform me). And this is where it ties in with the idea of an album as a whole: I (as a fan) would be more likely to listen to the full mixtape if it’s free than just a single or two. My hope is that they’re starting something; something that will bring back the album instead of the single.

Signed: and optimist for the future of music.

So that’s this week’s post. If you read it, please leave a comment here, my Facebook, or twitter. I’d love to hear your opinions. I’ll say that I personally am not a fan of Taylor Swift, but no offense was meant to either her or any of her fans. I have the next three weeks lined up, so be prepared for more good music next week. And with that, I leave you. As always, keep listening.