Mini Show Reviews: July 2016

Panic! at the Disco and Weezer – July 6

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I’ve been waiting for this show for MONTHS. I bought tickets as soon as they went on sale in JANUARY and it was agony waiting so long to be in Brendon Urie’s presence again (I haven’t seen Panic! since August 2014). SUCH AN AMAZING SHOW, I CAN’T EVEN TALK ABOUT IT PROPERLY.

Not only was Andrew McMahon amazing as always, but during his (opening) set, he ran through the crowd, including the row behind me (so close I could have touched him!), and along the lawns, all while singing “Synesthesia“. I also loved that he played “Dark Blue” which is one of our favourite Jack’s Mannequin songs.

Panic!, of course, was the highlight for me. With an hour-and-a-bit long set, Brendon (or BAE-don, as I like to call him), made the most of his time, storming through his set with his usual energy and panache. The best part of the show was when he played three of my favourite songs back to back (“Ready to Go“, “Nine in the Afternoon“, and “Crazy=Genius“), culminating in a drum battle that was super impressive. It felt like it was over too soon, but the elated feeling I get after a Panic! show stayed with me for the next week.

Weezer closed the show and, while they were good and their set was full of recognizable jams (“Undone – The Sweater Song“, for example), they didn’t seem as into it as Brendon did. For most of the set, they looked pretty bored, like they were doing it because they had to and not because they wanted to. Still, I never realized how easy it is to air-guitar to Weezer, so that was nice.


5 Seconds of Summer – July 12

5sos

I often referred to 5SOS as my “guilty pleasure”, but let’s be real: I really enjoy these guys. They’re like a young All Time Low (and I LOVE All Time Low)! So I was pretty stoked to see them on their “Sounds Live Feels Live” tour, and they did not disappoint.

We missed the opening band, Hey Violet, because the line to get into the amphitheatre was HUGE. Second band, One OK Rock was really interesting – they’re from Japan, and, while they have a somewhat poppy sound, they were heavier than I was expecting (there was even some screaming! Like really-early Fall Out Boy!) – I especially enjoyed “Mighty Long Fall“.

5SOS came out just before 9pm to THUNDEROUS applause. I was not even a little close to the stage (in the 400 levels), but the noise was DEAFENING. The guys seemed to really enjoy themselves and looked like they had a lot of fun running around the stage and working up a sweat. They banged through most of their set, pausing only a handful of times to chat (even though it was hard to hear/understand them over the screams) and make up a couple of Toronto-only songs: “Poutine Doesn’t Taste Like Poo Poo” was one, “Living In the Six (With Drake)” was another. Their actual songs were awesome: “Permanent Vacation” is my favourite, but fan-favourite “Amnesia” was also really good (I liked that a lot of people held up paper hearts). And while “Jet Black Heart” is a fantastic song, I do wish Michael Clifford had skipped the smoldering intro mostly because I thought my eardrums were going to burst from all the screaming (I’m not ashamed to admit that I covered my ears at one point because it hurt so much). Still, they put on an entertaining show, and I’d see them again…but I’m going to have to invest in a pair of earplugs first.

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Music Monday Round-Up: February 29, 2016

Rather than talk about something new today, I’m linking back to a couple of music-related posts I’ve written over the past month-and-a-bit that weren’t included on this blog!

Mind the Gap

Neck Deep (you can also read my review of their Toronto show here!)

idobi

reviews

And in un-music related news, I also reviewed V.E. Schwab’s fantastic novel, A Darker Shade of Magic for both Mind the Gap and idobi!

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Books & Music

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

This week’s prompt is Books and Music. These are two of my favourite things, but I rarely put them together (except for the thing I wrote here). So I’ve decided to make a list of songs that are based on literature/authors and/or make literary references.

I know there are a lot more out there – especially David Bowie and Radiohead and The Cure and whatnot – but I limited the list to songs I’m really familiar with.

1) “Resistance” – Muse; based on George Orwell’s 1984

2) “Time to Dance” – Panic! at the Disco; based on Chuck Palahuick’s Invisible Monsters

3) “Legendary” – The Summer Set; references J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan

4) “Painting Flowers” – All Time Low; references Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

5) “Weight of Living (Pt. 1)” – Bastille; based on Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

6) “To the End” – My Chemical Romance; based on William Faulkner’s A Rose for Emily

7) “Win Some, Lose Some” – You Me At Six; references Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games

8) “Back to Life” – Paradise Fears; references S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders

9) “Bukowski” – Moose Blood; refers to the author, Charles Bukowski

10) “Sowing Season” – Brand New; the second verse is inspired by Rudyard Kipling’s poem “If”, and the title of the song comes from Stephen King’s Secret Window, Secret Garden

I’m positive I’m missing really obvious ones from my music collection, but those were the ones I came up with (of course, there would have been more if I repeated artists, such as All Time Low’s “Somewhere in Neverland”, Bastille’s “Icarus”, and Paradise Fears’ “Stories in the Dark”, etc).

Let me know in the comments if you think of other songs that could make this list!

Liebster Award Part 3!

Thanks so much to Katie (katiejaysbookblog) for the nomination! I appreciate it and you should check out her blog!

Liebster2

1) What are your hobbies?

Reading, writing, drinking tea, and eating (I’m joking about that last one)(not really, though).

2) Whats your favorite book?

Outside of the Harry Potter series, my favourites include Gail Carson Levine’s Ella Enchanted and Robin Benway’s Audrey, Wait!.

3) What fandoms (if any) are you in?

Harry Potter, of course, and Sherlock, to a certain extent (I have a fondness for Sherlock gifs!).

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4) What’s your favorite music?

I’ll listen to anything, but I gravitate towards pop-punk and alternative. My top five bands are: You Me At Six, Panic! at the Disco, All Time Low, The Maine, and either Fall Out Boy or Paradise Fears, depending on my mood!

5) Pancakes or Waffles and why?

Well, #wafflesaturday is my favourite day of the week (that’s when my sister makes waffles for breakfast), so I’m going to say WAFFLES!

6) Left or Right handed?

Right handed.

7) What was the last movie you saw?

In theatres: The Peanuts Movie, which I loved. At home: Legally Blonde Two: Red, White & Blonde which I couldn’t remember at all.

snoopy

8) Where are 3 places you’d like to visit?

Ireland, Greece, and San Francisco!

9) Would you rather have your favorite character come into your life or be inserted into your favorite novel?

Ooo, this is a tough one! I’d say be inserted into my favourite novel; I’ve always wanted to visit Hogwarts, and the world in Ella Enchanted is just as magical, full of goblins and fairies and attractive princes. Audrey, Wait! takes place in LA, which I wouldn’t mind visiting either!

10) Favorite beverage?

Tea! I have a large, almost ridiculous, collection (mostly from England, because the Brits really do know their tea).

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I <3 Helena Bonham Carter.

11) What are your goals for 2016 (if any)?

My goal is to read at least 120 books, finish a manuscript (any of them that are currently in progress), and possibly start querying agents (once I finish writing something!).

Thanks again, Katie!

I’ve done the Liebster award twice before, so I won’t nominate blogs (mostly because I don’t have the brain power to come up with questions), but here are the last eleven blogs I followed – you should check them out!

Shelly’s Rambles
Mud and Stars
Cafe Book Bean
That’s So Jacob
Untamed Shrews
The Geek Couple
The Worn Bookmark
RedHeaded Book Lover
Wanderlust: Becoming a Traveler
AroActionCat
Ana Spoke

We’ll Never Shut the Goddamn Door [re-direct to idobi]

Now, I know I talked about Panic! at the Disco’s debut album, A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out a couple of weeks ago, but since then, I wrote a mini retrospective on the album, particularly what it means to me, for idobi. I’m very proud of this piece, and this album was the one that essentially changed my life, so I’d be much obliged if you could take a look at it here and let me know what you think! Have you ever encountered a life-changing band/song/album?

afycso

Liebster Award Part 2!

You guys! My ego is going to explode from all this blogger love: I’ve been (re)nominated for the Liebster Award by two people, SJ (Delirious Antidotes) and Cassie (Book Reviews & Haikus)! Thanks so much SJ and Cassie! Please go check out their blogs :)

I love answering random questions, so here we go!

Sidenote: when I was 17-18, I spent half my time on Facebook filling out those random questionnaires that you could post as notes, so this is pretty much my jam.

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Last time, I used the standard turquoise-y one, this time I wanted the pretty pink badge!

Questions from SJ:

1) Let’s kick this off with a little bit of self promotion, as it never did any harm: tell me about a project, website, post etc. that you want to draw attraction to. (URL’s are allowed)

My friend Jane and I are working on a pop culture website which we’re both very excited about! It officially launches on June 1st, but you can check out our snazzy home page here!

2) How did you/do you cope with exam season?

I made a lot of notes. Mostly on graph paper because, for some reason, it helped me focus (I was an English/French major, so I actually had to go out and buy graph paper, come exam time).

3) Who is your favourite band/musician?

How much time do you have?? I can narrow it down to my top five (in no particular order): You Me At Six, Panic! at the Disco, All Time Low, The Maine, and Fall Out Boy.

4) What is your favourite book?

One of my most favourite books of all time is Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine.

5) When did you start blogging?

I started my blog in August 2013. I started talking about books in October 2013, and I’ve been reviewing ARCs/giving books actual ratings since April 2015 (before, I just talked about whether or not I liked the book).

6) What is the best advice you have ever been given?

“Everything happens for a reason”. It’s not really advice so much as a proverb (is it even a proverb?) and I know it’s somewhat cliched, but it’s something I hold on to.

7) Explain the title of your blog.

My oldest sister nicknamed me “Bella” when I was little; she still calls me that and so now my three nieces call me “Bella” as well. When she was about three (she just turned nine), my oldest niece figured out that “Bella” and “books” both start with “b”, and thus she christened me “Bellsiebooks”.

8) Tea or coffee?

Tea! I have a borderline absurd collection of tea, but I love it.

9) What is your least “politically correct” opinion?

That’s a tough one…I don’t know how to answer that!

10) What did you think about before you fell asleep last night?

I’ve been telling myself stories to fall asleep ever since I was a child. For years, it’s been how I’ve worked out plot points for the books I’m trying to write.

Questions from Cassie:

1) What are three things you want to do/accomplish in life?

a) Publish a book (multiple books, ideally)
b) Become a kids’ book editor (or work in marketing for kids’ books…I’d take anything at this point)
c) Travel the world

2) Do you have a favorite musical genre and/or musician/band?

Pop-punk and similar genres (pop rock, metal, “emo”, etc). Please see above for my top five bands!

3) What was your first concert?

I saw Bon Jovi on the “One Wild Night” tour in 2001 with my sisters (I was 11).

4) Who is your favorite author? [If you don’t have one, what’s your favorite book genre?]

I love many authors, including Neil Gaiman, Libba Bray, Melissa Marr, and J.K. Rowling. I read a lot of YA (which is a category, not a genre), and I tend to enjoy contemporary or paranormal/supernatural/urban fantasy.

5) What’s the best book you’ve ever read?

I cannot possibly pick just one!! Ella Enchanted has been one of my favourite books for 17 years (I read it when I was 8), but I’m always swooning over some book or another.

6) When do you read most?

When I was working, I’d read on the morning commute and then continued for a bit when I got to work. Since my internship ended a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been reading a lot more at night.

7) What’s your preference: “real” physical books, e-books, audiobooks, or a mix of all of them?

Real books!!! I have a Kindle (which I stole from my dad) for my NetGalley ARCs and I sometimes use my phone if I don’t want to carry the e-reader around, but I much prefer the feel of physical books.

8) If you could have one superpower, what would it be and why?

Telepathy!

9) What fictional character would you like to be friends with most? Why?

Oh, so many! Anyone from the Harry Potter universe, of course, but sometimes I wish I had a tiger friend like Hobbes (he’s furry and good for conversation!). And if we’re going outside of books, then I’d want to be BFF’s with Marceline from Adventure Time because she is my hero.

10) Do you have hobbies besides reading?

I write and I’m a huge music fan, so I’m constantly a) updating my collection or b) attending a concert.

11) What’s your favorite food or drink to have while reading?

I don’t really eat/drink when I’m reading, but I guess tea. And I’ll eat chocolate at any time of the day, so I wouldn’t say no if someone were to hand me a piece of Dairy Milk while I was reading :)

Thanks for reading! And thanks again for the nomination(s)!

You may recall that I was nominated for this award in April, so I’m not going to officially nominate blogs. However, here is a list of the last 10 blogs I followed – you should check them out too!

a bookworm’s escape
aBOOkishOwl
iamkira
thoughts and afterthoughts
Becca and Books
Owls and Things
Just my humble life
Barda Book Talk
Gilmored
Hardcovers and Heroines

All you sinners stand up sing Hallelujah

I’ve said many times that I’m a massive Panic! at the Disco fan.

Needless to say, when a new song was released two weeks ago, I was singing “hallelujah” and pressing the replay button all day. I’ve always loved Brendon’s voice and he continues to be majestic in this song.

I find it funny when people say “whoa, Panic! still exists?”. Because clearly the people who don’t know Panic! still exists are the same people who don’t know me very well. I talk about them all the time.

So let’s clear the air: yes, Panic! still exists. Yes, Brendon Urie is the only original member left in the band (I’ll miss you, Spencer!) but Dallon Weekes (formerly of The Brobecks) has been a member since 2011, so it’s not the “Brendon Urie solo project”. Yes, they are planning on releasing a new album later this year.

And yes, I still love them.

Their sound changes so often, it’s next to impossible to predict what their next single/album is going to sound like, but this song, to me, has that uniquely Panic! flavour. It might not be what I expected (though it does have a similar vibe to Brendon’s collaboration with Travie McCoy, “Keep on Keeping On”), but any new music from Panic! is a cause for celebration in my world.

Tattoo Thursday

I’ve decided that today is “Tattoo Thursday”. Why? Because yesterday I got my fourth tattoo! But also because it’s my birthday and I’ll do what I want!

I’m actually 25, but this is close enough.

August 2012

tattoo

My first tattoo – Jack Skellington from The Nightmare Before Christmas. I often talk about how much I love Jack, so it made perfect sense to get his face permanently inked on me.

April 2014

Last year on my birthday, I finally convinced my sister Ro to get matching tattoos with me (I’m Reckless, she’s Brave). There are two layers to these tattoos:

1) The “VI” symbolizes one of our favourite bands, You Me At Six, and “Reckless” is my favourite YMAS song.

2) “The Reckless and the Brave” is a song by another fave band, All Time Low, and it was the perfect way to combine our love for two bands.

August 2014

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I wrote an entire post about the album behind this tattoo when I got it last summer, but it’s a Panic! at the Disco reference (“Nine in the Afternoon”), plus I’ve always liked pocket watches.

April 2015

quarter sleeveI’m referring to this as my “quarter sleeve” (not quite a half sleeve, but still more than just a single tattoo). I got this yesterday and it’s gorgeous (though it was gruesomely bloody before I took the bandage off). It’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderlandthemed (“we’re all mad here” is one of my favourite quotes) plus it went really well with my pocket watch and I also love drinking tea, so it has multiple meanings!

And there you have it! Those are my four tattoos, but trust me when I say I have a thousand other ideas (which include, but are not limited to: the Deathly Hallows symbol, Calvin & Hobbes, Adventure Time, the VFD/eye symbol from A Series of Unfortunate Events, song lyrics, and a Neil Gaiman quote).

How about you, readers? Do you have any tattoos? Do you want any? Let me know in the comments!