EP REVIEW: DIONYSIA – THE BREACH

EP Review – The Breach by Dionysia

 

The latest EP by Dionysia kicks off with strong guitar riffs from the track “Glory”, a solid opening to the rest of the album. The song has powerful vocals and is directed at someone who gave the narrator “nothing” – by the end of the song, the narrator returns the favour. The vocals are interspersed with inventive guitar melodies that combine to set the mood of an upbeat, belty EP. The second track “Zombie” is a real ear catcher with its post-chorus Saxophone melodies. Although personally I am a little tired of the use of the Zombies trope in TV and music, the chorus is very catchy and easy to listen to.

It is however the haunting start to the third track “Maybe I”, followed by some heavy electric guitar, that really demonstrates the bands versatility. The song seems to describe the current state of society, and the artists view on how to deal with it, making this song the ultimate loud sing-along.

The whole EP itself has very alternative vibes, with a twinge of country and blues. It’s the sort of thing I would listen to loudly through headphones and sing along to (likely very badly!). The instrumentation is always interesting and the songs have a variety of lead instruments, such as piano, guitar and sax.
The EP was released the 2nd August 2016, so I was a little slow to discover it. There are 8 total tracks, and the vocals throughout are raw with clear opinions. Dionysia know who they are and are here to show it. Looking forward to the full album!

Written by Cheylea Hopkinson

COFFEE HOUSE SESSIONS – TOM POINTER

Tom Pointer

The young Tom Pointer from Southampton embarks on his first set of gigs on the Coffee House Sessions Tour this week, playing at Royal Holloway on Monday 30th January. His influence of Rock and Roll mixed with lively Jazz, creates a “fresh” sound leaving you wanting more. 

Read on to see what Tom had to say in his pre-tour interview:

1.You’d describe your music as…  

Pop!

2. You’re currently listening to…  

JP Cooper

3. When you’re not making music you’re…

Swimming, cooking, spending time with family

4. You’d like to duet with…

Brittany Howard (Alabama Shakes)

5. Who’s your guilty pleasure?

Shawn Mendes

6. Dead or alive, who would you most like to grab a coffee with?

Ray Charles

7. You’re an artiste because…

I resisted music’s calling for too long!

8. Vinyl, CD or streaming?

CDs – for singing along to in the car!

9. Your party trick is…

I like to try different accents

10. Your hometown is X and we should visit because…

Poole, the New Forest is amazing!

11. Tinder or Taken?

The old-fashioned way

12. Snapchat, Insta, Facebook or Twitter?

Insta! Have a look – @tom_pointer

13. The best boxset ever is…

Homelands

14. Coffee House Tour… what are you most excited about?

Going back to my old uni Loughborough!

 

Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/tompointermusic/?fref=ts

COFFEE HOUSE SESSIONS – SONIA STEIN

The next artist to hit the road on the Coffee House Sessions tour is Sonia Stein, a young artist whose ‘synth-pop’ style plays at your heart strings. And with her most recent single ‘One of Those Things’, released back in November of last year, gives listeners a taste of her developing sound.

Here’s what Sonia had to say in her pre-tour interview…

1.You’d describe your music as…  

Singer-songwriter pop

2. You’re currently listening to…  

Can’t take me home – P!nk’s 2000 record

3. When you’re not making music you’re…

Embroidering, cooking, eating

4. You’d like to duet with…

Caroline Polachek (Chairlift)

5. Who’s your guilty pleasure?

Ariana Grande

6. Dead or alive, who would you most like to grab a coffee with?

Patti Smith

7. You’re an artiste because…

I couldn’t be anything else!

8. Vinyl, CD or streaming?

Streaming unfortunately

9. Your party trick is…

Telling people where i’m from (no one believes me)

10. Your hometown is X and we should visit because…

Warsaw, because it’s cultural and has really good nightlife

11. Tinder or Taken?

Taken

12. Snapchat, Insta, Facebook or Twitter?

Insta

13. The best boxset ever is…

Friends

14. Coffee House Tour… what are you most excited about?

Singing loads!

 

Find out more: 

http://www.soniastein.com

 

ONE SENTENCE REVIEW: 'SATISFACTION' – THE BAY RAYS

Satisfaction, by The Bay Rays

The garage punk/rock trio ‘The Bay Rays’ are definitely ones to watch. Originating from Kent, the band have already achieved so much, such as supporting The Slaves on tour and even playing at Glastonbury in 2016, and their success doesn’t stop there! With lots of support from BBC introducing, and an ever-expanding fanbase elevated by their passionate and incredible live shows, the group never fail to perform. 

What the music team had to say…

“Explosive and electric, truly uplifting.”

“A loose yourself dance kind of song.”

“A high-octane indie stomper, perfect for road trips or solo hairbrush-and-mirror sessions!”

“Poppy and upbeat, and keeps the foot tapping without losing your attention.”

“A good song to play when on a long car journey.”

“Cool intro, but not sure if it satisfies me.”

“Genre spaning indie with a clear pop influence.”

“Interesting, electric mix of instruments.”

“This song WILL get stuck in your head, but in a good way.”

“I like it, it has a kind of old school vibe to it! Nice.”

“Sounds like old Kings of Leon and a generic indie group had a baby! Good song though!”

“A catchy indie-esque song that makes you want to dance and clap along.”

Check out the track here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=14brRjV-ENc

COFFEE HOUSE SESSIONS – MARK SULLIVAN

The award winning musician Mark Sullivan, is the first artist to start 2017 on the Coffee House Sessions tour. The talented singer/songwriter released his most recent album at the beginning of December, and is due to play at Royal Holloway on Monday 16th at 5pm. So come along to Tommy’s Bar in the Students Union on campus, to check out Sullivan’s musical talents in the flesh.

Here is the Coffee House Sessions pre-tour interview with Mark himself…

1. What one song could you not live without?

Jeff Buckley – Lover, You Should’ve Come Over

2. And what song is your guilty pleasure?

Genie In A Bottle

3. You’ve got the chance to record a duet… who would you like to sing with you?

Emeli Sande

4. Tell us about where you’re from…

I’m from Stevenage. I’ve been playing in and around the area for a long time. My parents were heavily into Motown and the Beatles and I grew up playing guitar, first joining a band around the age of 14. Stevenage’s music scene is pretty much non existent, however the scene in Hitchin next door is fairly healthy.

5. What’s been your career highlight so far?

Winning Rock The House Soloist category, having my award presented to me by Rick Wakeman and then getting to play at the US ambassador’s’ house all in one day!

6. What are you most looking forward to about the Coffee House Sessions tour?

Getting to perform around the country to new listeners – playing live is what I live for.

7. What would we find in your dream rider?

Vocalzone, peroni, iberico ham, selection of cheeses, 1000 packs of guitar strings, and maybe a chilli sauce laden kebab after the show!

8. Which famous person, dead or alive, would you most like to have a coffee with?

Jimi Hendrix

9. Have you ever been starstruck?

Yes, I met Flea from the Red Hot Chilli Peppers in London once and rather than asking for a photo I proceeded to say “Flea, you’re a legend”. I then ran away like a little child. Gutted I didn’t get a photo!

10. What advice do you wish someone would have given you when you were just starting out in the music industry?

Believe in yourself. If you want it you can get it.

11. Where can people go to find out more about you?

www.marksullivanmusic.com

www.facebook.com/marksullivanmusic

www.twitter.com/marksullivanmus

ONE SENTENCE REVIEW: 'HERSIDE STORY' – HARE SQUEAD

Herside Story, by Hare Squead


The new hip-hop trio from Ireland, recently released their latest track ‘Herside Story’, for all those reminiscing summer. Although they may attract an audience with an ‘acquired taste’, as evidenced below, they nonetheless are moving up in the music world, and after supporting Dua Lipa, could 2017 twice as good?

Halina: “The song has some quirky beats but generally it’s a bit of a weird song, not really a clubby song or an easy listening song; it has no genre.”

Beth: “Not a fan at all: I started to understand what he was saying about halfway through and I think the weird video sums up the strange vibe completely.”

Megan: “The singer is trying to sound too much like Drake’s music style in my opinion.”

Fab: “Not my thing but there are definitely some decent similarities to Drake in there!”

Wade: It’s very confusing. It’s the same problem I have with Jason Derulo and Chris Brown. They both sound exactly the same. And this dude sounds like Drake.”

Josh: “The type of song you want to chill and relax to – has a ‘spaced out’ feel to it.”

Gemma: “I like the beat, but not much of the effects on the vocals. It’s a good tune to nod your head to though.”

Kate: “The kind of song that plays in Tommy’s at the beginning of an SU night.”

Aysha: “It’s hard to understand what the lyrics are even saying – but I don’t think you’re missing out on much if you can’t.”

Adam: “Definitely not my thing – it sounds too light somehow – not enough bass, the mix is really off and let’s not get started on the level of originality in the song.”

Maddalena: “I have mixed feelings about it. I think the singer kills the muse base.”

Noelle: “It sounds a bit like the composer went: ‘I want to make chill beats and all that’ and the vocalist went ‘Nah, I want to rap and say random things and sound like I’m trying to finish my sentence before someone cuts me off really hard’, ad the result was this.”

Elliot: “Too much going on with the vocals, and slightly too sped up.”


Check out Hare Squead’s track here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXVJTRXgCCg

ONE SENTENCE REVIEW: 'HALLUCINATING' – ELOHIM

Hallucinating, by Elohim


The upcoming electro-pop artist from L.A, Elohim (‘God’ in Hebrew), brings a very unique style of music to the table. With a warm, intoxicating feel of synth-pop, dreamy vocals and electric beats, ‘Hallucinating’ brings a rollercoaster of imaginings. 

Wade: “I like it!!”

Eamoun: “Very summery, perhaps it will keep us all warm this winter..?”

Dulcie: “Good rhythm paired with a catchy melody.”

Megan: “Cool beat, she has a nice young voice, it is very unique and has a distinct feel to any other song.”

Laura: “Perfect slice of sweet fuzzy pop that makes me severely miss summer.”

Elliot: “Funky, tribal, energetic!”

Gemma:  “Interesting combination of classic and digital instruments. Like the idea of computerised voices.”


Check out Elohim’s Hallucinating on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uH6e6PnEhFk

ONE SENTENCE REVIEW: 33 "GOD" – BON IVER

33 “GOD” by Bon Iver


Bon Iver’s third album ’22, a million’, released on the 30th of September, consists of drums, horns and eccentric sounds that build  into an intriguing aesthetic sound.

A few members of the music team reviewed one of the new tracks 33 “GOD”…

Gemma: “Would love to hear this song at a live concert, waving my hands up side to side.”

Elliot: “Sounds almost clash with each other; not my style.”

Molly: “Very atmospheric – really enjoyed the first third but the rest of the song resembled the dissonance of a car horn. A ver relentless car horn.”

Izzy: “An amalgamation of sounds and vocals that produce a score to a relaxing break in one’s day.”


 

 

ONE SENTENCE REVIEW: 'WARM' – BECKY HILL

One Sentence Review: ‘Warm’ by Becky Hill


Gemma: Unusual intro, but a good unusual.

Charlie: Good production/backing.

Megan: Interesting beat and a cool voice.

Ije: Infection melody, synth reminds me of Wildfire by SBTBKT

Phoebe: Strange intro but once it gets started, had a good drum and beat.

Eamoun: Pure going out hype track, better than average.

Laura: SBTBKT mood big time, the laters are beautiful and the vocals are kickass.

Dulcie: Minimal background music really highlights her amazing voice.

Maddalena: Interesting sound, need to listen to it again.

Elliot: Interesting blend of contemporary styles.

Noëlle: The kind of song that gets stuck in your head…sounds like the people in the video would be dancing in slow motion.

Kate: Super sexy, SU worthy.


 

ALBUM REVIEW: KINGS OF LEON – WALLS

WALLS – KINGS OF LEON

Just 24 hours after the release of their new album “WALLS”, Kings of Leon are number one in the UK iTunes chart for “Top Albums”. This won’t probably surprise their fans that had been waiting to hear new music from this band for three years. WALLS, abbreviation for We Are Like Love Songs, takes us back to the band’s old, but iconic, style: that style you can’t help but like. The band was able to combine their early works’ acoustics to the new modern music influences. Kings of Leon’s soft rock is accompanied by some new and experimental sounds that make their songs unique.

Opener “Waste A Moment” is a classic throwback song that recalls their early 2000s youth. “Reverend”, my personal favourite, presents some heart wrecking lyrics and a lovely sharp guitar that goes on for the whole song. “Around the World” is the typical song you’ll listen to on the radio and dance to while driving. “Conversation Piece” has an original background sound that absolutely works with Caleb Followill’s voice. “Muchacho” features this rhythmic and unheard melody that carries on for the entire song. Songs like “Find Me” or “Over” express the band’s need of being heard.

WALLS tells us a story, a story about people and their everyday life. People that get lost, people that can’t find themselves, people that love, people that suffer, people that live. Every song touches a deep and meaningful topic that describes something about every member of the band. Listening to WALLS pushes you closer to this band and makes you understand a bit more about them. All the ten songs of the album seem to be connected, in a way or another, to each other. It’s an album to listen all in one go.

We can say that the Tennessee band may have left apart their old Southern natural habitat to enter a more thoughtful and intimate sound that it’s absolutely worth a listen.

TRACKLIST:

01. Waste A Moment

02. Reverend

03. Around The World

04. Find Me

05. Over

06. Muchacho

07. Conversation Piece

08. Eyes On You

09. Wild

10. WALLS


By Maddalena Petromilli

ONE SENTENCE REVIEW: 'What If' – Craig David

One Sentence Review: ‘What if’, by Craig David


Bringing back the ‘One Sentence Review’ this year, whereby each member of the music team review a new, random song. Here is this week’s…

Georgia: “Good beat to nod your head to.”

Eamoun: “Some of the best parts of early 2000s but sounds as dated.”

Daniel: “Throwing back to the early 2000’s!”

Wade: “Wouldn’t play it on my show!!”

Halina: “Good beat and lyrics, but nothing new.”

Gemma: “The beat reminds me of old 90’s R&B and the voice has a nice soothing vocal.”

Francis: “Boring, melodramatic nonsense.”

Bethan: “Not much development.”

Sam: “Naff.”

James: “Throwing you right back to an era you’re glad you left.”

Megan: “A great slow jam with a great catchy beat.”

Haroun: “Very radio friendly.”

Noelle: “It reminds me of songs that play in corny teen movies…Very Jason Derulo in my opinion.”

Dulcie: “Sounds like Justin Timberlake c. 2004.”

Phoebe: “Really catchy song – good tune for the radio.”

Nicolette: “Classic bae – loved it!”

Josh:  “It’s the 2000’s all over again!”

Charlotte: “Catchy, good for entertainment shows.”

Unknown: “From the second it starts you can tell it is a classic Craig David song with a base and a good range.”

Ijeoma: “Craig has a very distinctive voice, I enjoyed the song and very different as it contained a key change and most RnB songs today don’t have one. No wonder he is nominated for a MOBO award.”

Archie: “The lyrics, although slightly different, were devoid of anything interesting, which was a shame for such a lyric-driven song. The melody was bland and repetitive. Overall, a song with no bite.”


QUARTERLIGHTS: LIVE ACOUSTIC SESSION

QUARTERLIGHTS


Quarterlights, the rock/pop band, who formed at Royal Holloway back in 2013, recently released their EP ‘The Real Life’. The band consists of Ollie Clark  (Vocals, Piano, Saxophone, Violin), Tom Molloy (Lead Guitar), Andrew Skipper  (Bass Guitar) and Luke Beasley  (Drums). 

They came to the studio for a chat and live, acoustic session – follow the link to listen to the show (in two parts)…

PART I

PART II


Interview conducted by: Isobel Sheeran and Halina Hayre

‘The Real Life’:

Itunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-real-life-ep/id1155073513

Spotify – spotify:artist:3S4hlPFZxiNsOA1QOQVnsJ