This Isn’t What We Expected from The Vaccines

What did we expect from The Vaccines? Probably not this crazy new sound – but we are loving it. The indie-pop band recently released their new single, a UK tour and a multitude of festivals dates. ‘Handsome’ has the familiar pop rock melodies of ‘Norgaard’ and the ironic teenage angst filled lyrics of ‘No Hope’ but it also is a breath of fresh air for the band. Justin has said that he wants the song to sound bad in 10 years, and have it define a generation of music – a bold claim for this self proclaimed pop band. I don’t think pop necessarily has to sound bad in 10 years, it just needs to be so familiar that you know it like it the back of your hand and the tune is so lodged in your brain that it’s pretty impossible to remove it once it gets stuck there.

Since ‘Handsome’, the band have given us a taste of the album with other singles like ‘Dream Lover’ and ’20/20′ (seen live 3rd April 2015). ‘Dream Lover’ is dripping with heavy, electronic riffs and is a spaced out, crazy single. 20/20 is upbeat, guitar-shredding, Vampire Weekend-inspired enjoyment, similar to their older stuff – it’s my favourite so far. However, it does have a close competitor in the form of ‘Minimal Affection’. I must admit when I first heard the opening notes of MA I wasn’t convinced – it wasn’t really up my street, or so I thought. On a second, and then third, and then fourth listen (all back to back you understand) – I was sold. It’s funky, it’s catchy – it’s like The Strokes, Chromeo and early Vaccines B-sides in one big, beautiful melting pot. Solid, groovy tunes and ambiguous lyrics are looking more and more likely to characterise the new album.

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Major Lazer – Jessica (featuring Ezra Koenig)

So this song is on repeat on my phone at the moment – I just love it! It’s quirky, catchy and a little weird. It comes from Major Lazer’s latest LP ‘Free The Universe’. For those who don’t know, Major Lazer is an electronic music project created by Diplo in which he collaborates with artists from various genres, the latest being Ariana Grande with All My Love. ‘Jessica’ features a lot of double meanings and puns, which are ingenious and different and it also includes lyrics sung in German. Electronic, futuristic and sensual, ‘Jessica’ is one to listen to, even if you don’t think it will be your thing – I promise it will stick in your head and you’ll HAVE to listen to it again (and again and again).

Julian Casablancas+The Voidz – Human Sadness

Aggressive melancholy is the first thing which comes to mind upon hearing this epic, distorted 11 minute single from Julian Casablancas’ new project. The Strokes’ front man, who has an infamous knack for writing catchy and short songs, presented his fans with this deeply emotional and drawn out song, proving to them and to everyone else that he is one of the best songwriters of this generation. With the clearly painful and personal lyrics, this song has a way of connecting with every single person who hears it, which is an extremely rare and incredible thing to achieve. These lyrics are painfully poetic and I have not felt anywhere near the same level of grief and pain needed to try and understand or analyze them, I just know that they are beautiful and distressing.

This song is a journey. A twisted, brutal, depression-driven journey which has an ironic and troubled beauty to it. Take, for example, the fact that a clear and catchy riff can be heard throughout the song. It contrasts completely with the atmosphere and meaning of the song but it sounds amazing and gives the feeling of a warped and crazed pop song. There are clear stages and sections to this piece which are highlighted by explosive guitars and separated by varying crescendos. Casablancas wanted to use this song as way of delivering a message, portraying emotional torment and baring his soul. At least that is the way I see it.

Buy ‘Human Sadness’ and their new album ‘Tyranny’ here 

 

“Human Sadness” – Lyrics

Put money in my hand
And I will do the things you want me to.

Vanity, overriding wisdom,
Usually common sense.

Should I delete it,
You said you’d read it
You promised you would never ruin it with sequels,

I wake for you, on and on

Beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field,
I will be meeting you there.

The moon’s a skull, I think it’s grinning
The room is full of people now I think it’s spinning

Wanted you, didn’t ask for nothing.
Wait for you, on and on

And I don’t need your tie, I don’t need to, tired of saying it.
We don’t need more talk, don’t empty out your canteen on the desert floor.
Ahhh, it’s all my fault

Never wanna spell it out,
I just want to say that it is all my fault,
I could never spit it out,
I don’t wanna fix your tie.

Never want to say we’re sad,
Thankful that we got some chance,
I know you won’t get back your time,
I wish that you could take it back.

Beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field,
I will be meeting you there.

He wanted it more than me, I suppose
I was in a rush to wait in a line.
Now I hear echoes of my old self,
This is not the way to be.
All at once,
I lost my way.

Is it not true, the things that we did?
Come here at once and look what they did
Come here shut down and tune in tonite,
Learn the words that they teach you without you realizing it
Come here sit down and watch some TV

Mine all mine, wait your turn,
Cross my cross, slice his hand,
Not your son, not your friend, not your enemy.

I rely on the little things to get me by,
Conscience says, “I’m okay”,
You don’t hear what they say.
“He’s not my son, search his home”
Off to war,
It’s time to go hide inside.

Soft skin,
Weak chin,
Just walk me thru it, tell me what to do I’ll do

Hurry hurry, that’s my baby
Ohh, do what you can.

All the time – he waits for me.
And now we talk from time to time,

Hits you on the head when nobody’s there,
Then he says, “come here could you fix my tie?”

It’s never gonna be,
To be is not the way to be.

Show me where to go, don’t get angry so quickly,
Fuck depression.

Beyond all ideas of right and wrong there is a field,
I will be meeting you there

Understanding is more important than love,
If not money will always trump justice

All is lost,
I’ll find my way.
So I say,
To be is not to be.
To be is not the way to be.

Bastille – Bad_News

 

It’s just over a year since Bastille released their debut album ‘Bad Blood’ which brought them huge success having sold over 2 million copies in the UK alone. The band have been touring constantly since the release of their first LP, and have also been writing new material alongside this, according to front man Dan Smith. Their new album is set to be released soon, and will have a variety of sounds, such as rock, electronic influences, and songs more similar to ‘Bad Blood’. When the full album will actually be launched is down to pure speculation, but it is unlikely to be in the near future as the band are still playing festivals and have many more arenas to fill before then.

However, on Thursday of this week at 12.20am (ironically the day of A-Level results) ‘Bad_News’ was first played on Radio 1. I stayed up for this late night broadcast with my friend as although I am a huge fan, I was also intrigued as to what this new track, so soon after their debut, could have to offer. I was not disappointed. Undoubtedly, ‘Bad_News’ is somewhat of a departure from singles like ‘Pompeii’ and ‘Laura Palmer’, in terms of the depth, and more electronic sound. But there is a similar vocal range and a familiar melody here, mainly due to the steady marching beat which is recognizable from their previous tracks. ‘Bad_News’ is fresh and upbeat, while in keeping with the current 90’s electro pop trend. They have also joined Ed Sheeran and One Republic in using mainly falsetto backing vocals, which is no bad thing I hasten to add. The repetitive lyrics and steady beat are complimentary, just like in their mash up ‘Of The Night’.

Whether this single precedes an upcoming album, EP, or is just to quench the thirst of their multitude of fans, Bad_News is satisfying, fun and a single worth investing in.

 

Song of The Week

I couldn’t decide between these two songs, so I went with both.

Honeyblood – Bud

 

I love the images and aesthetic of this music video, obviously the song is fabulous as well. Listen to these guys if you like Interpol, Lorde, Paramore etc.

Honeyblood – Killer Bangs

 

These girls prove that female rock duos work, and that they work really, really well. They are undoubtedly set to be one of the biggest newcomers of 2014.

Buy their debut album here and also listen to Super Rat– my other favourite of theirs.

Haim feat. A$AP Ferg – My Song 5

There are mixed feelings flying around about this new version of ‘My Song 5’. Looking at the YouTube comments, it’s split between people who hate it and people who love it. Personally, I really like it. I think the rap verse could have better lyrics or a heavier beat to blend better with the song, but overall it sounds cool and I look forward to seeing Haim branching out more with similar collaborations.

See if it’s for you: