The Teenage Music Review

Amnesia EP- 5 Seconds of Summer- Review (and a bit of a ramble)

I have a lot to thank 5 seconds of summer for. I’ve been a fan since last October (When we all had to struggle with the live versions with hysterical screaming of their songs as they promised the album would be out ‘soon’ something  they’d been saying for the past 2 years…) and damn its changed my life a lot. Ok that sounds over the top and like I’m one of those crazy fans who say a band has saved their life (I believe in what oasis said in ‘don’t look back in anger’ “please don’t put your life in the hands of a rocks and roll band” if you get too far involved in the lives of an idol so that you feel like you can’t survive without them, then I think things have gone too far, anyway that’s a whole other can of worms so I’ll stop now). Being a fan of 5sos just happened to be a catalyst for some good things that happened in my life, mainly ‘finding’ my two best friends through mutual love of the band and their music, but not just that, 5sos opened my eyes to a different music scene I hadn’t really had much experience of. I was brought up on indie and rock, that was, in general not very modern (though my favourite band was, and still is one of them, the white stripes), anyway I didn’t really know that much about punk. Before people start yelling and saying they’re not punk (though personally I would say they are pop punk), the point isn’t about their music, its about the music that influences them. The majority of the time when I find a new band its through another band I have been listening to, so with 5sos all you need to do is follow them on any social media for a pretty much constant stream of music recommendations. Basically I discovered the 21st century punk scene through 5sos, a little strange I know but I figure it had to happen sooner or later through one band or another, 5sos just happened to be that band for me.

Also one more thing before I start the proper serious music review I just want to say a bit about 5sos and female teenage fans which seem to discredit them as a band. This just makes me so mad because it suggests all teenage girls are shallow and only care that they are good looking, some girls I’ll admit are like that but its unfair to say that all of us are and its also unfair that this should mean people assume, or continue to think despite listening to the music, that they are untalented. There’s a quote from this wonderful website that says “Do you know what’s the worst? Being in love with someone famous not just based on looks but their talent, message and every small detail about them. No matter how intelligently you explain it people will still just say you’re a silly teenager who thinks a famous boy is cute.”  and I think that is really appropriate for 5sos, because that’s how I and many others feel about them (though for me personally, I wouldn’t say I’m in love with them). I like them for their music and their personalities and the way they look would not change that.

Anyway here’s the actual review of 5 seconds of summer’s latest EP Amnesia. The third single of their long long awaited self titled début album released last June/July is much slower and more meaningful than the previous ‘she looks so perfect’ and ‘don’t stop’, both high energy and more on the pop-y side of their material. Unusually, the band had little input in the writing of this single, but who really cares when the writers are Benji and Joel Madden from Good Charlotte? According to 5SOS the brothers had had the song pretty much finished for a while but they were just looking for the band they thought would be perfect to release it, and lucky for the young Australian guys the brothers thought they clicked perfectly with the song. The premise of the song is the 5SOS boys reminiscing over a failed relationship that they cant get over and includes its fair share of heart breaking lines, “And the dreams you left behind you didn’t need them, like every single wish we ever made, cause I’m not fine at all”; pair this with some melancholy chords and a crack in the voice of the lead singer Luke and you’ve got yourself a real tear-jerker.

The second song on the EP is a new song ‘daylight’, the sixth original song of theirs to be released on an EP, not to try and entice fans to buy the singles as well as the albums as you might think, but as the drummer Ashton said they just had too many songs they wanted to release and found a way around this through the EP’s. Like she looks so perfect and don’t stop I’d say this song is a more pop-y song with an extra twist of quirky lyrics (I’ve got a friend who’s committed to scifi, He’s read every comic he’s addicted to Twilight, He’ll give you the goose bumps, But he’s never lead me wrong) and strong guitars.

Then to top of this EP along with the live version of Amnesia from Wembley Stadium, we have the cover of American Idiot by Green Day and my favourite song off the EP, which 5SOS originally produced for Kerrang! Magazine’s American Idiot tribute CD in June, a collection of artists covering the songs of Green Day’s most famous album. When I heard 5SOS were going to be taking part in this tribute CD I was beyond excited, one of my favourite bands covering a song off one of my favourite albums of another favourite band, and they didn’t let me down. The band actually got quite a lot of stick for being a part of this CD, many hard core Green Day fans thought they were way to pop, but actually after they did this and they did it so well they earned a lot more respect. For me I think it’s one of the best covers I’ve heard, they have managed to strike a pretty perfect balance between putting their own spin on it but not changing the song too drastically, I love it, and I urge any sceptics who don’t believe they could have done  good job to just go and have a listen, you never know, you might be surprised.

Izzy :)


Centuries- Fall Out Boy- Review 

(Disclaimer: I wrote this for a school project so 1) it has been heavily borrowed from other sites (that was the task) and 2) I won’t always write this seriously :))

“We’ll go down in history, remember me for centuries”, the iconic line from the new fall out boy single of their up-coming 6th album, yet to be named. With the phenomenal success of their latest album save rock and roll, selling over 584,000 copies and debuting at number one on the Billboard 200 chart in the US, and their growing popularity with the mainstream music audiences, it is possible fall out boy could well go down in history. The concept behind the song is a ‘david vs goliath story’ Pete Wentz, the bassist, told DIY magazine, “When we were growing up, it was like, ‘We’ll never be U2 because we’re from the suburbs of Chicago and nothing happens here’ but the idea now is to inspire that kid- you can be the person up onstage and its only the power of belief that’s going to get you there”. Much like the chart-topper ‘My songs know what you did in the dark’ and ‘phoenix’ from the last album centuries shows off Fall Out Boy’s remarkable knack for creating anthems, combining powerful interesting lyrics, strong drum beats driving the song, dynamic pace changes and clever use of percussion and backing vocals. This creates a perfect pop-rock anthem with some depth and interest too it, its more than just a catchy chorus.

However this time its not all their own work, the vocal hook played at the start and throughout the piece “doo-doo-doo” was borrowed from the 80’s song ‘Tom’s Diner’ by Suzanne Vega, but you only need to listen to the original to realise it might as well be their own. The way they’ve used it is as if the fact it was originally from Tom’s diner is part of the song, using borrowed here is definitely correct. Frontman, Patrick Stump said “I feel like it was so ubiquitous when we were kids. I mean that song was absolutely everywhere and it just kind of disappeared. I haven’t heard it in a minute. And I was like that’s a shame. That was such an amazing song. I would love for that to get some kind of tip of the hat.”

As for the video, they have only released the ‘hyperlapse edition’ so far with promises on instagram to release the official one soon. In this edition they pay tribute to their home city, Chicago, which as kids, like many bands, they thought they’d never get out of. The camera flies through the city showing the main landmarks and everyday life in Chicago in a faded black and white (with red tinges) and finishes with a promo in graffiti on a Chicago wall. The video is interesting and fits well with the song but really only makes me more excited for the official video, which I suppose means its serves its purpose. This is a very exciting offering from Fall Out Boy and suggests the next album is going to be just as exciting, Wentz told DIY they had written most of the new album and recorded about half of it. He estimated it will be finished early 2015.


Hey There

        

So I feel the need to write that obligatory welcome blog post so if anyone ever decides to read this they can find out a bit about this thing I’ve got going. This is going to be a blog where I write reviews and articles about music, to try and chase my dream of becoming a music journalist. So a bit about me I guess, I’m 16, studying my a levels and a northerner, I almost died as a toddler because I thought it would be a good idea to eat some poisonous berries, I’ve never been on a roller coaster, I used to be vegan, I cant remember a time when I only lived in one house and I’m scared I wont make my mark on this world and I’ll be forgotten, oh and that’s me up there. I’ve loved and lived music my whole life thanks to my dad playing music throughout the house 24/7 for my whole life, I love the way it has so much hidden power for change and how most people don’t realise how tenuous it is, you change one note or word in a song and it changes the entire song and what it means, what it’s saying, how it makes you feel, what it makes you do, I think that’s what makes music so special. Currently my favourite artists include: arctic monkeys, 5 seconds of summer, the 1975, green day, all time low, nirvana, jimi hendrix, fall out boy, X ambassadors, bastille, my chemical romance, cage the elephant, the beatles, the kooks, bob dylan, imagine dragons, the kinks,  the white stripes, the clash, the all american rejects, blink 182, the who, oasis, sum 41…. And I’ve been through a lot of phases in my music taste (the ‘whatever dad likes’ phase, the dreaded ‘one direction and other tweeny bop’ phase, the ‘pop-punk’ phase, the ’60s-80s’ phase, the ‘punk rock emo’ phase) and now I’m at this mish mash stage of genres that I don’t really know how to define. I’ve also known from a young age that being a musician isn’t for me, I’ve tried to learn instruments but none of them clicked, and I cant sing to save my life, one thing I think I can do though is write. Though I’m no fool, I know my writing needs a lot of work, which is why I started this blog, to try and improve this.

Ok enough about me, I’m going to answer the question that will inevitably asked if anyone ever reads this blog, ‘What does the name mean?’. I chose beatific because, as well as looking music related the definition is ‘appearing happy and calm, especially in a holy way’ which I think is pretty relevant as to how music makes me feel. As the great man who watches over me from my wall once said “Music is my religion”- Jimi, Hendrix, and that’s why I chose that name. 

It scares me how much good music there is out there that i haven’t discovered yet, but I’m hopeful through this blog I will discover more, so if you wanna do that too, you can join me.

Izzy :)