IN RETROSPECT: Gwen Stefani – Love. Angel. Music. Baby.

The 2000s was an important time in popular music. There was so much quality and so much of it to choose from. Pop music could be anything, anything at all. And by anyone at all. Competition within the industry definitely existed, but overall, there was a lot more variety across the board, an abundance of artistic individuality, all combined with original, well-crafted compositions.

At that time, there was also ‘just a girl’ who exemplified the aforementioned characteristics. She also happened to be the lead singer of an already established ska/punk/rock band. If you know anything about me, you’ll know I was a huge fan while I was growing up. Yes, we’re talking about Gwen Stefani.

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Chris Brown lanza nuevo vídeo para “Hope You Do”

Cuando un artista lanza un álbum que cuenta con más de 40 pistas, puede que creyeras que puede estar satisfecho con su trabajo. Puede sacarse los zapatos que está todo acabado. No es así con Chris Brown.

Hace un par de días el cantante veterano de tan sólo 29 años de Virginia estrenó un séptimo (has leído bien, ¡séptimo!) videoclip de su último álbum Heartbreak on a Full Moon (2017). En la canción “Hope You Do” (“Espero que lo hagas”), producida por ISM y A1 (y que contiene letras explícitas), Brown habla de querer cambiar sus hábitos caprichosos y mujeriegos por una chica que realmente le gusta, ansiando su atención, mientras canta emotivamente sobre el instrumental de R&B suave y sensual.

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Chris Brown drops new music video for “Hope You Do”

When an artist releases an album with over 40 tracks, you might think that they would be satisfied with their work. They can put their feet up and stop there. Not Chris Brown.

Yesterday the veteran and 29-years-young singer from Virginia released his seventh (yes, seventh!) music video from his latest album Heartbreak on a Full Moon (2017). In the song “Hope You Do”, which was produced by ISM and A1 (and contains explicit lyrics), Brown talks of wanting to change his playful and wayward habits for a girl that he really likes, longing for her attention and engagement, while displaying a melodic and emotive vocal performance over the sultry, silky R&B/trap instrumental.

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I Wish I Didn’t Quit: Music Lessons – Nathan Holder

Many of us learned instruments as children, whether it was the recorder in class, or private piano or guitar lessons after school, and a lot of us are familiar with that excitement of learning a new extra-curricular skill… But then a lot of us are also all too familiar with a particular thought as we grow up: I wish I didn’t quit.

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Leaks, Covers & Mixtapes: Una Breve Guía de las Canciones No Oficiales de JoJo

Apenas terminada su gira con Armed Forces Entertainment en Japón y Okinawa, Joanna “JoJo” Levesque recientemente anunció que está lista para volver de gira de forma bastante distinta. Agárraos las pelucas…

Los que conocen bien el trayecto de la cantante de R&B/pop, sabrán que después de irrumpir en la escena con su canción más conocida “Leave (Get Out) -con tan solo 13 años- y posteriormente haber lanzado dos álbumes exitosos JoJo (2004) y The High Road (2006) con Blackground Records, Levesque se encontró con un “problema pasajero” digamos, a causa de su sello discográfico, lo cual le impidió que lanzase un tercer álbum de estudio. Durante esa época, después de haber trabajado implacablemente para montar varias versiones de un LP completo, con aspiraciones de empezar la nueva etapa en su carrera musical, se mantenía productiva y sacó unos mixtapes para sacarles de apuro a sus fans leales, cantó varios covers… y, desafortunadamente, se filtraba una gran cantidad del material en el que estaba trabajando.

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NEW MUSIC: Ellis Aaron – “Me & You (Remix)”

Ellis Aaron is a singer, songwriter and musician from Bristol who is slowly making a name for himself on both the Bristol and worldwide music scenes. Having had his music played on local and international radio stations and received a lot of positive feedback from his fans and peers alike for his soulful and high-calibre productions, Aaron has released a new follow-up remix to his most recent single.

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Leaks, Covers & Mixtapes: A Brief Guide to JoJo’s Unofficial Releases

Fresh from touring in Japan and Okinawa with Armed Forces Entertainment, Joanna “JoJo” Levesque recently announced that she is ready to get back on the road for a new tour with a distinct twist. Hold on to your wigs…

Those well-accustomed to the R&B/pop singer’s journey will know that after crashing onto the scene at the age of 13 in 2004 with arguably her most popular song “Leave (Get Out)” and subsequently releasing two successful albums JoJo (2004) and The High Road (2006) on Blackground Records, Levesque hit what we shall now call a blip in the form of label troubles, which for seven years prevented her from releasing a third studio album. During that time, having tired relentlessly to put together several versions of a full LP with hopes of starting the next phase in her music career, she stayed proactive and released mixtapes to tide her loyal fans over, performed various covers… and unfortunately had a lot of the material that she was working on leaked.

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IN RETROSPECT: The Weepies – Hideaway

The Weepies are currently in the middle of a 10-year anniversary tour for their album Hideaway (2008), so I thought it would be apt to revisit one of the folk-pop duo’s best known projects and share some of my favourite picks from it!

Weepies Steve Tannen and Deb Talan1
Photo credit: The Weepies

If you’re not familiar with The Weepies, they are an American band comprised of husband and wife musicians (how awesome!) Steve Tannen and Deb Talan. Yes, their names were already kismetically like that before they met. Even spookier is that the two were fans of each other’s music – again, before they’d even met. That obviously made it easier for them to eventually meet, which was at one of Tannen’s shows back in the early 2000s. They decided to join forces and if we fast-forward to today, they’ve released five studio albums (2015’s Sirens, the latest), got three kids, and as I mentioned before are now on this tour to celebrate 10 years since the release of Hideaway… I’m almost certain you’ve probably heard them on one of your favourite TV shows.

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“The Stars, Like Dust” – Curxes’ new music video

Curxes (also known as Roberta Fidora) is an electronic musician from the Isle of Wight, who makes “bleak and oblique choral post-pop songs”. Featured in many publications, such as NME, MOJO and BBC Music, and having toured across the UK, she has gained an appreciable following with her eerie, somewhat sad, yet complacently content music.

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Pariis Opera House release music video for “Your Body, My Tune”

Pariis Opera House is an electronic band hailing from London. Their latest release, “Your Body, My Tune” is taken from the album MIRRORS (2017), which the band have described as “the soundtrack to life and love in our digital age”.

Founded in 2011, the duo have played festivals and shows across the UK, received regular play on BBC Introducing and BBC Radio 6 Music, and had their songs featured on television and in films, such as Hello, My Name is Doris.

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FEATURED SONG: Hidden Gentlemen – “Jericho”

Hidden Gentlemen are an alternative rock band from Glastonbury. I first met them when we shared the bill last year at a gig at The Louisiana in Bristol and they’re really nice guys (which I now realise is a testament to their name). Consisting of Mark Anthony (vocals, guitar), Kyle Cullen (drums, vocals) and Greg Shepheard (bass, vocals), the band have played various festivals in the UK, as well as toured individually in Germany and the U.S.

They have released three EPs to date, including 2017’s Quietly Step Inside, and since February this year have been releasing a new single every month, the first of which is “Jericho”.

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LIVE REVIEW: ‘Life & Soul’ Bristol 9.4.17

We could all use some uplifting and encouragement, so when a live music, poetry and spoken word event pops up with the name ‘Life & Soul’, you can expect it to do exactly what it says on the tin.

On Sunday 9th April, public relations and events company E. Stellar PR hosted its first live event at Toto’s Wine Bar in Bristol. Where “soul and inspiration collide”, the evening promised to “uplift, inspire, spread love, bring life and be 100% honest and real as artists share their truth”. Sounds good, no? I must reveal that I was part of the line-up, and I also happen to be sibling to the organizer, but here’s proof of my non-bias:

(Yes, I did just use Twitter as a credible source – it’s 2017.)

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Lauren Froderman choreographs for “Samson” by Regina Spektor

If you’ve never heard “Samson” by Regina Spektor before (even if you have) you have the absolute privilege of experiencing the eloquently and ridiculously sweet love song in this beautiful way.

Originally from Arizona and now based in LA, American dancer and choreographer Lauren Froderman (also winner of season seven’s So You Think You Can Dance) has been busy writing and producing concept videos of her choreography along to some of her favourite songs. The first uploaded to her YouTube channel was a fun, slippery sequence to “Soap” by Melanie Martinez, and today she released her interpretation of one of Regina Spektor’s most beloved and well-known pieces.

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FEATURED EP: Oscar Jerome

London-based musician and singer-songwriter Oscar Jerome released his eponymous debut EP last week. After spending years grafting in the music scene and refining his talent, the young artist unveils a work consisting of four weighty tracks that are certainly a testament to that.

It’s hard to define Jerome’s sound as it’s a peculiar mixture. The influences of jazz, hip-hop and soul are clear, but it’s more aptly described as alternative. With contemplative and obscure lyrics, and arrangements that have carefully been thought out, he creates something original and mysterious that captures your attention from start to finish.

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EXHIBITION: “Don’t Trust These Walls” at 123space

You never know what to expect when you walk onto Stokes Croft any night of the week. There are dozens of cafes and bars always packed with brooding or buzzing punters socializing their sorrows away, music is always pulsating through the walls of these same establishments, and there is certainly an ever-present people-driven spirit that supports and welcomes art of pretty much any format. Last Wednesday, siblings Beulah Davina, ThisisDA and Eric Sings picked the rustic and minimalistic 123space to host an exhibition displaying their art and music.

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