Songstruck: ‘Fire That Burns’ by Circa Waves

Circa Waves’ new album Different Creatures is out today and on its way to me, so it’s got to be one of their new tunes today!

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What went on in February 2017?

So it has been a couple of months. Time flies for sure.

I have been doing more thinking than writing it seems, but sobeit. Just the way it goes sometimes. I have been doing way too much shopping (not kidding) over the last month or so. I have given my wardrobe a major overhaul, as well as my cosmetics and skincare drawer (it actually is a drawer I keep that stuff in). I am coming to the end of my shopping spree, as my need to buy things is dwindling.

I have spent a lot of money in one month, but I know it is all good useful stuff, and the rest of the year will be much less expensive. I took major advantage of the January/February sales to update my wardrobe and got some great stuff that I know I will get a lot of wear out of and I will not have to shop big again for a good couple of years.

Clothes-wise, some of my favourite things I have been wearing are a couple of new jumpers. In winter jeans and a jumper is my staple, but my jumper collection was pretty uninspiring, so I bought a few new ones and got rid of a bunch of old ones that I did not feel good in. Life’s too short to dress in things you do not like!

Otherwise, I am really pleased with some of the practical clothes for summer I have been bought. I will be doing a lot of cycling, taking my daughter to school, and I was in desperate need for some practical spring/summer clothes. I have bought a couple of jumpsuits that I know I will wear a lot over the summer. They look good and will be great for cycling in. I have also for the first time in my life bought some dungarees. They are black denim and look pretty awesome! Perfect for spring!

Part of my recent wardrobe overhaul is probably the fact that I am starting to come into my own style-wise. I like what I like and have little reference to anyone else these days. I don’t really care whether anyone else around me wears the kind of clothes I wear and I think I am more confident being a little different. As long as I feel good in what I wear, it does not really matter (as long as I don’t look a complete arse).

I have also started to take better care of my skin lately, as well as wearing a bit more make-up. Maybe it has something to do with the fact I am turning 38 tomorrow… Maybe? I am not suddenly caked in foundation or anything, but I am just taking a little more care and I am actually enjoying putting on my eye shadow and lippie every day (well, most days). With that for some reason has come an awareness of what I am actually putting on my face and I am trying to find more natural skincare products and cosmetics. For a week or two I went completely bonkers and decided everything needed to be completely natural. I do that, I get obsessed with something for a little while and research it to death, feeling like I need to change my whole life. Now that storm is over and I am more rational, but feel good about the changes I have made and I am making.

I have decided that the more of something I put on my skin, the more I want them to be natural. For instance, I have changed to 100% natural moisturisers, cleansers, and stuff like that, which I apply all over my face every day. With other things, like eye shadows and lipsticks, I am more aware, but not incredibly fussed, as I use them on only a small area.

On a side note, who knew you can use pure coconut oil as a make-up remover?!

Eventually I want to change my soaps and shampoos to more natural products, but I want to finish up what I have first. No need to waste any of it! I will be sorry to move away from my Aussie shampoo, that’s for sure – it smells divine. I will just have to find something that smells similarly amazing!

But as I said, the changes feel good. Now the obsession is over I know it is the right thing for me and I feel happy applying these products to my face every day, knowing there is no rubbish in there.

But because of my recent obsession with skincare and cosmetics, I may well be doing some posts on that in the near future.

What else happened? There was a little storm called Doris that caused a little bit of damage. She blew the roof off our shed, which then damaged window sills of our barn conversion. Hopefully that will be fixed next week. I love my house, but I bloody hate it when it’s stormy. Wooden houses creak an awful lot when the wind hits it full on the side and I don’t like that… at all!

Music-wise February has not been that exciting for me. I have been listening to a lot of my old favourites, such as Ash, We Are Scientists and The Charlatans. Oh, and Vampire Weekend. In the car I had Modern Vampires of the City on non-stop throughout most of February. That album is, what, almost four years old, but it’s so amazing. I just did not get bored of it at all.

I did buy a few new albums as well, but I will get to that some other time. They are mainly oldies.

For this month, what am I looking forward to? I did catch a couple of new Circa Waves songs lately and the new songs sound a bit beefier and, in my opinion, better. I really liked Young Chasers, but it was a little ‘light’. Perfect for summery car rides, pleasant, but kind of forgettable. I have pre-ordered a signed copy of their new album Different Creatures, which is out on Friday. High hopes for that one!

Just on a side note. There are some bands that I am hoping will release some new music this year. Tim Wheeler from Ash said that they hope to have a new album together by summer (YAY!). I am also hoping for new albums by Vampire Weekend and Alvvays (please, please, please). It would also be good if The Vryll Society could release an album. Asylums have been writing new music as well, so something by them would be good too.

I will leave things here for now. Sorry about the big ramble, but clearly I had much I wanted to say without actually saying much, if you get my drift.

Kris x

My (musical)2016

2016 will be remembered as the year many of our cultural icons died. David Bowie, Leonard Cohen, Prince, George Michael, Mohammed Ali, Alan Rickman, Carrie Fisher and the list goes on and on. I won’t dwell too much on that, because many others have done that for me. Let’s just hope 2017 will be kinder on our heroes.

For me 2016 was quite a nice year, not least because we completed major building work. But musically, there was much to enjoy. I got the chance to see favourite bands like We Are Scientists and Ash live, but also saw some new bands like Hidden Charms and Yak. I got to say hi to WAS’ Keith Murray and also to the Ash guys, which was good fun. I have a faint memory of telling Tim Wheeler drunkenly that he was not as short as I remembered (met them before in 1996). Yeah, definitely a dubious highlight. Seriously though, the guy wrote so many of my favourite songs and I am glad I got a chance to tell him. Such a nice guy too. It’s wonderful when your heroes don’t disappoint you (and when they’re taller than you thought :p).

Some new bands that caught my attention in 2016 are pretty eclectic bunch. The pop punk of Asylums set against the laid back psychedelic sounds of The Vryll Society could not be more contrasting, but that does not mean I can’t love them both. Also worth a mention are Let’s Eat Grandma and Sundara Karma, who I have enjoyed listening to. When I saw Ash last month they were supported by Indian Queens, who I thought were pretty amazing as well and I am hoping to hear more from them.

As for my top 3 favourite 2016 albums, in no particular order:

  • Helter Seltzer by We Are Scientists (because it makes me happy)
  • Killer Brain Waves  by Asylums (because I love playing it very loudly)
  • I, Gemini by Let’s Eat Grandma (for all its wonderful weirdness)

There are plenty of other albums that I have listened to and even more that I should have listened to that I haven’t yet. You can only listen to so much right? But these were the three that most caught my attention. If there are any you feel I SHOULD listen to, please let me know!

Looking forward to 2017:

I have only a couple of gigs lined up. Jose Gonzales and the String Theory in January and Emmy The Great in March. Annoyingly the Jose Gonzalez gig later clashed with an Asylums gig that I really wanted to go to, but I already had those tickets and fingers crossed I will get to see Asylums later in the year (I better!!!!). Again, Jose Gonzalez and Asylums, day and night, right? 🙂

I am hoping 2017 will bring new albums by Ash and hopefully The Vryll Society and Alvvays may grace us with albums as well. Sundara Karma’s album Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect is out later this week and I am looking forward to that one. Circa Waves has a new album out in the next few months as well, which I hope is good.

I hope I will be discovering more new music in 2017, but not too much as I still have way too much 2016 stuff to listen too!

Fingers crossed too that I will be able to breathe new life into this blog thingie.

Happy New Year!

Kris

 

Songstruck: ‘A Perfect Rhythm’ by The Vryll Society

Much can be said about 2016; many icons left us, the world is an absolute mess and I was terrible at posting, well, anything.

But some good things also happened. I saw some wonderful live music, met some of my musical heroes and discovered some fantastic new bands.

One of those new bands that I have a feeling may well blow up more than I would like to is The Vryll Society. There is a touch of the Roses and the Charlatans about them at times and I love every song I have heard by them! Their songs just worm their way into my heart. Fingers crossed I will get to see them in 2017!

This is their latest and it’s a mighty fine tune!

 

Songstruck: ‘Classic Love’ by We Are Scientists

Well, what better song to share today that one by a band that has become one of my favourite bands in the last year or so and that has a video in which a cartoon Trump is being hit by a cartoon car!

Let’s hope the next car crash won’t be Trump becoming the next US president. That… would… not… be… good…

It’s from their latest album Helter Seltzer, which was released in the spring and one of my top albums of 2016.