Mini Show Reviews: November 2016

Danny Elfman’s Music from the films of Tim Burton – October 30

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As you may know, I’m a big Tim Burton fan, and one thing I absolutely adore is his collaborations with Danny Elfman. The day before Halloween, I attended the Toronto Symphony Orchestra’s perfomance of select songs from Tim Burton’s movies, including Edward ScissorhandsFrankenweenie, and – the movie everyone was waiting for – The Nightmare Before Christmas. During the songs, they projected scenes from the movies and/or Tim Burton’s original sketches onto a big screen as visual entertainment, but it was really cool to hear some of my favourite film scores live. The ice dance scene from Edward Scissorhands always hits me in the feels, and it was even more emotional watching the orchestra playing it.


LANY – October 30

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I actually won tickets to this concert, which meant I ended up with back-to-back events on the 30th, but I’ve been hearing a lot about LANY, so it was cool to check them out. Opening band Transviolet was interesting – not really my type of music, but cool to see live because they’re really good performers. Their singer looked like a cross between Luna Lovegood, Lorde, and what’s-her-name from The Pretty Reckless (aka Jenny from Gossip Girl), and she was fascinating to watch. Their bass was super heavy, which I usually enjoy, but they probably could have turned it down a notch in such a small space.

LANY has very similar aesthetics (and sounds) to The 1975, so if you’re into Matty Healy and co, you might want to check these guys out. They’re pretty mellow, but some of their songs have a great beat to them – stuff like “Where the Hell are My Friends” and “Like You Lots” (which, to be honest, are the only two songs I remember the names of). They were fun to see live, but I’m not sure if I’d listen to them outside of a club/venue.


The 1975 – November 3

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As you may recall, I saw The 1975 earlier this year, in May. This show was my fifth time seeing them and in the course of three years, they went from playing the Mod Club to playing the ACC – one of the biggest venues in the city. So that’s impressive, but it was also weird to be standing so far away from them…also the fact that the screaming from the fans was about 129790% louder than ever.

The opening act was 070 Shake (I think that’s what she’s called)…she wasn’t really my cup of tea, but she was certainly interesting to watch.

The 1975’s set was as polished and mesmerizing as ever. They played such a great mix of “old” and “new” (I’m OBSESSED with “Loving Someone” now), but they also made the decision to include some of their instrumental tracks, which I thought was an odd choice. On the one hand, it’s nice to hear them live and watch the band jam out to the them, but then, as an audience member, you can’t really do much during those 3-5 minutes. Also the fact that they could have included other older songs (like “The City” or “Settle Down”).

During the encore, Matty asked the crowd to sing “Happy Birthday” for his 80 year old grandad so he could film it…and as a “thank you” for indulging him, they played “Robbers“, which they haven’t been playing this tour!! Of course it was magical, and the “now everybody’s dead” line is still spine-tingling. 100% recommend seeing The 1975 live, though now you’ll have to be prepared to pay arena-sized prices.


Crown the Empire – November 18

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I was supposed to see Simple Plan on the 18th, but they postponed until March, and, long story short, I decided to see Crown the Empire that night instead. My sister and I have been listening to them for a few years, but we’ve managed to miss them every time they’re in town. So apart from a short set at Warped this summer, we’ve never seen them live, and we needed to get it out of our system.

We got there mid-way through blessthefall’s set – they were good, not really what I expected (I’ve only heard a handful of their songs), but nothing mind-blowing either. The crowd seemed to love them though.

Crown the Empire came on at 9:40 and I was a little disappointed that they only played an hour. There was a lot of stuff from their latest album, Retrograde, which is super mellow compared to their older albums. The highlight for me was when they played “The Fallout” (the song that first introduced me to CTE) right before the encore. And while I like “Millennia“, I’m not entirely sure why they decided to slow the set down.

Overall, they were good but not great. I’m glad I got a chance to see them live, but I probably won’t run for tickets the next time they’re in town. Also, where the heck is Dave?


Biffy Clyro – November 25

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When I was in Dublin at the end of November, my sister andI saw Biffy Clyro at 3 Arena. First of all, that place is HUGE. Secondly, Biffy always puts on an incredible show – everything from their explosive opening song “Wolves of Winter” to their brilliant (in multiple ways) light show. They played a lot of my faves and my sister lost it when they started “JustBoy”. They’re such polished performers and you’d be lucky to catch them live to see what a real rock show is like.

Meanwhile, Brand New opened for them and, while they were decent, they weren’t great. Their set was designed to appeal to hardcore BN fans and the majority of the audience couldn’t have cared less. I’m a casual BN fan so i was disappointed when they sped through my favourite song “Sic Transit Gloria” but then played a 12 minute outro. As a headliner, they would have been impressive; as an opening band, they seemed to waste their time on being Artists and not actually making an effort to appeal to people who may not have listened to them before.


Phil Coulter – November 26

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Also in Dublin, we went to Dun Laoghaire (sorta of a suburb type place, 20 minutes from the city centre), to see my dad’s favourite musician, Phil Coulter, an Irish legend, perform. It was a two hour long show that included a mini intermission; most of the perfromance was Mr. Coulter sitting at a piano and chatting with the audience before delighting our ears with some of his original compositions (including my favourite, “Coultergeist“) as well as classic Christmas tunes (such as “Silent Night“, with his wife Geraldine singing). Another guest included a former Celtic Thunder member, Paul Byrom, who serenaded us with songs that Phil wrote for him.

We sat in the third row and even got a shout out from Phil himself who had been told that we’d travelled all the way from Canada to see him (he never plays here). It was a mellow evening, but we were all stoked to hear (and later meet!) the man who usually soundtracks our Sunday nights at home.


Hands Like Houses – November 30

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We’ve seen Hands Like Houses twice but both times it was a short set so we were excited to see them headline. Opening band The Color Morale was pretty good; I saw part of their set at Warped a couple of years ago but haven’t really gotten into them. Next was Our Last Night; I’m more familiar with their covers but I recognized quite a few of the songs they played, including “Road to the Throne”, and their cover of “Cold Water”, featuring The Color Morale’s Garrett and Hands Like Houses’ Trenton, was fantastic.

HLH was, of course, amazing. They were energetic and lively and the entire club was sweating like nobody’s business within minutes of them taking the stage. They played a lot of songs from their most recent album, Dissonants, including lead single “I Am” and “Colourblind” (which I love), and older songs like “A Tale of Outer Suburbia“. Basically, the show was 10/10 and I would absolutely see them again (and not just because the lead singer is cute)!

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Mini Show Reviews: October 2016

Bastille – October 5

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I’ve seen Bastille twice before this (and have tickets to see them next March) and they never fail to put on a fun show. While their most recent album Wild World is fairly mellow, they’re so full of energy on stage. Singer Dan Smith was especially impressive this time – they’d cancelled their New York show the night before ours because he strained his voice, but he was still able to perform for us, hitting all the high notes with minimal effort. The first 3/4’s of the show was basically their album (minus a handful of songs), including “Send Them Off!” and “The Currents” (both of which I really like) and it was cool to hear because it gave me a better appreciation for their new material. Of course, my favourite part was when they broke into their last three songs,pulled from their debut album, Bad Blood, including my fave “Pompeii“.


This Wild Life – October 8

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I’ve seen This Wild Life before (briefly at Warped 2015 and then opening for Mayday Parade), and, while their songs (which are mostly acoustic) can be very mellow, they put on a really fun show. Lots of energy and sing-a-longs, and the band members seem like genuinely nice dudes (we saw them hanging out outside the venue before their set). Opening bands Movements and Have Mercy were pop punk-y fun (I realized belatedly that I actually know a Have Mercy song, “Two Years“). This Wild Life’s set was just over an hour long, during which they performed some of the new songs from their recent album, Low Tides (such as “Hit the Reset“), as well as fan favourites from previous releases like “Pink Tie” and “Concrete” (which is really good live). My sister compared them to an acoustic version of twenty one pilots, which is accurate, and I hope more people start paying attention to them.


Sum 41 – October 18

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Even though I JUST saw Sum 41 at Warped this summer, I was still pretty excited to see them headline. Opening band As It Is was as energetic as ever (I still can’t take Patty Walters and his constant tongue-sticking-out move seriously, but they were fun), and Senses Fail was also pretty good (their songs tend to blend together for me, but that’s just because I’m waiting impatiently for “Can’t Be Saved“). Sum 41 burst onto the stage and played for about an hour and forty minutes (longer than I expected), with a set that was a nice mix of new songs from their recent album, 13 Voices and “classics” from their 15+ years as a band (“Motivation“; the heart-breaking “Pieces“, which I forgot about but still love; opening with “The Hell Song“). Deryck Whibley has a surprising amount of stage presence which I didn’t really feel at Warped, probably because the stage was so far away, but in a sweaty venue, it was exactly what you want in a punk show. Obviously the highlight was “Fat Lip” (which they closed with) because MAN, that’s such a good song!


The Wonder Years – October 24

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Our last show of the month was super pop-punk – just the way I like it. Seaway opened the show, and, even though I just saw them at the end of July, they were still very entertaining. I had been looking forward to Knuckle Puck’s set, but, unfortunately, they couldn’t make it across the border after getting into a fender bender (with a DEER)…instead, I put all my energy into jamming the heck out to Moose Blood (they played my two favourite songs – “Gum” and “Knuckles” – back-to-back, which means I almost died). I don’t know what it is about RealFriends, but I just can’t get into them (I’ve tried like 4 times), so I didn’t really pay attention to their set.

The Wonder Years is the type of band that I forget I enjoy until I randomly hear a song or catch them live. They have such great lyrics – my fave off their recent album, No Closer to Home, is “I Don’t Like Who I Was Then” – and, especially now that I’m 26, I love screaming along to “Passing Through a Screen Door”. They put on a solid performance (not every band can get away with starting a set with an acoustic song), and their encore of “Came Out Swinging” was everything a pop-punk fan could want.

I’ve been moving mountains that I once had to climb

Last Thursday, we attended the Toronto date of the AP World Tour featuring Neck Deep, State Champs, Knuckle Puck, and Like Pacific.

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I found out about a week before the show that Like Pacific is from Toronto, so that’s pretty cool that they’re opening for some of the biggest names in pop-punk right now. They’re good – more Knuckle Puck than Neck Deep – and I’m happy that Toronto is being represented on this tour!

Next was Knuckle Puck – I’ve seen them a couple of times, and their live shows are really tight. They bring a lot of energy on stage and get the crowd moving whether they’re playing older songs (“Gold Rush”) or singles from their full-length debut last year, Copacetic.

I’ve heard a lot of buzz about State Champs and I even know a couple of their songs, but for some reason, I just can’t get into them! I don’t know why – they have all the elements of other pop-punk bands I love – but I sort of zone out when I’m listening to them. They’re not terrible, and I think I like them live better than recorded (similar to how I feel about As It Is), but they weren’t my favourite part of the night.

Finally, the moment I was waiting for: Neck Deep thundered out to the sounds of “Citizens of Earth” from last year’s stellar Life’s Not Out to Get You. I’ve only seen them play a short set at Warped two years ago, and I LOVE the new album, so I was really excited to see them headline. They made the most of their set and while there was some on stage banter (mostly between lead singer Ben Barlow and bassist Fil Thorpe-Evans), they didn’t talk forever or pause for too long in between songs.

Their set was a great mix of “old” and “new”, including my favourite song, “Kali Ma”, which was as high energy as I’d imagined. I was also thrilled to hear “A Part of Me” which is my 4 year old niece’s current favourite song (I’ll give you one guess who introduced her to it. Spoiler alert: it was me), and I’m thankful that she’s made me sing it to her so many times so that I knew all the words.

Another highlight of the set was the “jazzed up” version of the normally acoustic song, “December”. As pretty as it is when it’s acoustic, it sounded amazing with the full band. I just found out that it was released on the Target deluxe edition of the album, and now I’m even more annoyed that Target failed to take root in Canada.

Overall, it was a great show! Despite the freezing temperature outside, the venue warmed up once everyone started moving. I’m looking forward to the next time Neck Deep heads to North America.

I’ll be the empty canvas if you be the paint

Few things in this world make me feel more pop-punk than listening to Knuckle Puck (except for listening to Neck Deep. Or eating pizza while avoiding a circle pit, which is what I did at Warped).
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We’ve seen Knuckle Puck two other times, and I even reviewed their debut album, Copacetic for idobi this summer. When we saw them on Wednesday, it was on their first ever headlining tour, which they decided to kick off in Toronto (this rarely happens, so it’s exciting when it does!).

I felt bad for the first opening band, Head North, because the Blue Jays game was on at the same time and more than half the crowd was watching TV instead of listening to them (it was the game we actually won). The second band, Sorority Noise, was good. Honestly, I can’t really remember what they sounded like (I should have written this review earlier!), but they were sorta emo-meets-pop-punk, I think.

Next up was Seaway. The last time we saw them was when they opened for Bayside in March, and I know I enjoyed them. They’re Canadian (from Oakville!), which is awesome. And they’re super pop-punk, which is also awesome. I liked that they had their new album, Colour Blind, for sale, even though its official release date is this Friday.

Finally, Knuckle Puck came out. One of the best parts of being the first date on a tour is hearing certain songs live before anyone else. This show, they played “Ponder”, “In Your Crosshairs”, and “Untitled” (minus the 8 minute outro, which was good because it was so hot in the venue) live for the first time!

I was also glad they played some of my preferred songs early on in the evening, which got me pumped for the rest of the set, including the single, “Disdain”, and “Your Back Porch”.

Something about the Hard Luck Bar makes me sleepy (probably the extreme heat), so it was occasionally difficult to pay attention to them, but, watching Knuckle Puck go from an opening band to a headliner is really cool. I think they’re really starting to make a their mark in the scene – their friendship with Neck Deep probably doesn’t hurt – and I expect great things from them in the next few years.

If you’re looking for an up-and-coming band who plays unapologetic pop-punk, check out Knuckle Puck!

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

Different tie, but I’m wearing the same suit

One of my favourite things in the world is going to a The Maine concert. I know, it’s awfully specific, but I love those guys so much, and they always put up on an incredible show.

We saw them for the seventh time on Saturday (technically eighth, since we attended an acoustic session/meet & greet with them in the morning).

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Garrett, Pat, John, Kennedy, Jared

I have to confess, we missed the first band, The Technicolors, because we were next door at Factory Girl eating chicken wings (highly recommend, by the way). But we saw The Technicolors in November when they opened for Nick Santino, so we didn’t feel too bad (plus those chicken wings were really good).

Next up was Knuckle Puck. We saw them last year (opening for Man Overboard), and I remember enjoying them. They’re like a non-Welsh version of Neck Deep – pure, unapologetic pop-punk. I think I downloaded them a while ago, but I’m definitely going to give them another listen!

They’re friends with Neck Deep, which makes so much sense.

The other opening band (and, arguably, a draw for a quarter of the crowd) was Real Friends. We’ve seen them too, when they opened for The Wonder Years last year (on my 24th birthday!). They’re like an angstier (angstyer?) version of The Wonder Years, a bit more whiny, and honestly, their songs all start to sound the same after a while. I don’t mind them, but I probably wouldn’t see them on their own i.e. if they’re not touring with another band I like.

The best part was when they played “Loose Ends” with Kennedy (from The Maine) joining them on guitar and the singer from Knuckle Puck came out for a verse. I love when bands join each other on stage!

Sidenote: both Real Friends and Knuckle Puck are a bit more “punk” than The Maine, who, especially in recent years, veer more towards the “rock” end of the spectrum, but I found it interesting that a) these bands were touring together and b) both opening bands emphasized how different their sound is compared to the headliners. I guess it was an “explanation” of sorts for people who aren’t necessarily pop-punk fans and were maybe thrown off by the openers, but I thought it was great that The Maine was bringing out a variety of bands and giving them a chance to play “bigger” venues.

Finally The Maine came on stage. This tour is in support of their new album, American Candy, so they played quite a few new songs. At the same time, they played some of their “classics”: John played “Into Your Arms” acoustic (and cracked jokes the entire time), and two of the songs near the beginning – “Run” and “Growing Up” – were reworked so that they flowed better with the new material.

One of the first The Maine songs I really loved.

They also played a cover of “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” (by The Rolling Stones), and it was incredible. I’ve heard them cover many random songs, but this one really fit with their current sound, and they did a fantastic job. It was also impressive that they managed to segue seamlessly into “Love & Drugs”.

Like I said, seeing The Maine live is one of my very favourite things in the world. They’re always so full of energy, they’re surprisingly funny (looking at their serious promo shots, you wouldn’t really think that they have a sense of humour, but they do), and of course, the music is always amazing. They’re one of those bands that I start missing as soon as the last chord fades out. If you’re into pop rock with meaningful lyrics, give these guys a chance. You won’t regret it.

We’ve got scars on our future hearts

Much to my delight, nearly all of my favourite bands are releasing new music this year! A couple of weeks ago, All Time Low dropped their fifth (technically sixth, but since you can’t find a physical copy of 2005’s The Party Scene, I tend to ignore it) album and it’s just as good as their past efforts. I would describe this overall as a cross between 2009’s Nothing Personal and 2011’s Dirty Work and below I’ve presented my thoughts on each track.

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1) “Satellite”

Favourite lyric: We were just kids singing

This is an excellent opener and has a bit of an anthemic quality to it. I love how it starts slow and builds up until you’re practically screaming the last few lines. Apparently ATL have been opening their live shows with this song, and I can only imagine how pumped the fans get.

2) “Kicking & Screaming”

Favourite lyric: I’m chasing after rock n’ roll

I personally love how aggressive Alex sounds in this song. It’s bold and brash and absurdly catching.

3) “Something’s Gotta Give”

Favourite lyric: Wake me up, say “enough is enough”, I’m dying to live, something’s gotta give

This was the first taste we received of new ATL back in February, and I think it still holds up as one of my favourite tracks. As I mentioned when it came out, people complained that they didn’t like ATL’s “new direction”, but this song, to me, is the logical and natural progression for the band.

4) “Kids in the Dark”

Favourite lyric: They left us alone, the kids in the dark, to burn out forever, or light up a spark

Another single that was released in March, this one grew on me. I liked it fine to begin with and now, after listening to it for the umpteenth time, it’s a great sing-a-long song.

5) “Runaways”

Favourite lyric: They will have to find some other hearts to break

I think I listened to this song once before the album officially dropped and most people were comparing it to The Killers’ “When You Were Young”. I can sort of see where they got that idea from, but I don’t think it’s so similar that you would get the two mixed up.

It’s probably not among my top five faves on the album, but this is still vintage All Time Low.

6) “Missing You”

Favourite lyric: Paint the walls black and scream “fuck the world”, ’cause it’s my life, I’m gonna take it back

THIS SONG is one of my favourites. I don’t know what it is about it that I love so much, but it seeps into my bones – especially when the bass kicks in – and makes me stop whatever I’m doing to sing along.

7) “Cinderblock Garden”

Favourite lyric: Let’s take the worst and make it better

If I said this on a music fan site (like absolutepunk or propertyofzack), I’d probably be stoned, but honestly, this song reminds me of a 5 Seconds of Summer song, especially the beginning. Before you lambaste me, please note that I a) have been a fan of ATL for 8 years and will lovingly support them until my dying day and b) I actually quite like 5SOS, so it’s not an insult (plus, Alex Gaskarth wrote with 5SOS, so it makes sense that they’d have a similar style, right?).

That being said, it’s not actually my favourite song. I can appreciate the musical aspect and Alex’s voice is, as always, gorgeous, but despite the pretty lyrics, it just makes me feel “meh”. It does get stuck in my head quite a bit, though, so I probably like it more than I think I do (if that makes sense).

8) “Tidal Waves”

Favourite lyric: You sharpen words to use like knives, when you lose your cover, there’ll be nothing left

This song makes me think of blink-182, but that’s literally because of Mark Hoppus’ verse. It’s the closest thing to a ballad on this album and I generally enjoy ATL’s slow songs, so of course I like this one. Again, Alex’s voice = beautiful.

9) “Don’t You Go”

Favourite lyric: Settle back now and raise a toast, to the young ones growing old

The beginning of this song reminds me of blink too (or maybe even Simple Plan?), and while that could be because of it’s proximity to “Tidal Waves”, I also think it’s because of its playful, bouncy vibe. I’ll bet this is a fun one to hear live.

10) “Bail Me Out”

Favourite lyric: Will you catch me when I fall?

To me, this is one of the filler tracks. Standard, boppy ATL (shout out to Joel Madden of Good Charlotte!), but nothing too outstanding. I can’t even remember what it sounds like when I’m not listening to it.

11) “Dancing With a Wolf”

Favourite lyric: Fool me once, it’s shame on you, fool me twice and let the wolves come crashing through

I’ve named this one “my jam” (for this album). It’s not exactly what you’d expect from ATL – it almost has an early Fall Out Boy vibe – but it’s fun and dancey and gah, I just love it so much.

12) “The Edge of Tonight”

Favourite lyric: You’re the beat playing in my heart

Similar to “Bail Me Out” where I can’t bring it to mind. It fits with the overall tone of the album, but it does feel more like a filler (which is fine – you can’t expect every song to be the BEST SONG EVER).

13) “Old Scars/Future Hearts”

Favourite lyric: We’ve got scars on our future hearts, but we never look back, no, we never look back

I love this as a closer. It brings the same energy as “Satellite”, the guitars are on point, and while it has a bit more of an aggressive vibe, I think it’s one of the strongest, most cohesive tracks on the album.

I bought the deluxe edition with the bonus tracks: “Bottle and a Beat” and “Your Bed”, neither of which I LOVE (with a capital L-O-V-E), but still appreciate and if you’re a hardcore ATL fan like me, they’re worth checking out.

Perfect’s never perfect

Thanks to Ro, I’ve been listening to this song a lot lately.

Blitz Kids is yet another in a string of British bands that we’ve added to our playlists over the past year or two. I think they originally followed Ro on Twitter, then we forgot about them for a while, and then suddenly they were opening up for some pretty epic bands, including All Time Low, Taking Back Sunday, and Mallory Knox (among others). That’s when we started to pay attention to them.

There might not be such as thing as “perfect”, but this song is pretty close.

I’m a cliche in a song, and everybody’s singing along

Two weeks ago, All Time Low released the first single from their upcoming album, Future Hearts. It’s called “Something’s Gotta Give” and the video is fantastic.

It’s a bit gory, but they did a great job with it.

I loved this song the second I heard it. To be fair, in my mind, All Time Low can do no wrong, but this seemed like an excellent way for them to “come back” (they haven’t released new music since the bonus tracks on their 2013 re-release Don’t Panic: It’s Longer Now).

Then I was perplexed because there were so many comments floating around saying ATL had changed their sound and it wasn’t the same and what happened to them and I was like

I don’t understand how this song is so different from their usual stuff when it seems like a natural progression for them. If anything, it almost seems like they’re bringing back their old sound.

After my initial “ALISDHFL ASDOUHGF ASD I LOVE THEM” reaction, I listened to it again and thought that it had a “Me Without You (All I Ever Wanted)” sound. Which, in turn, has always reminded me of something off of 2007’s So Wrong, It’s Right (maybe “Shameless“? Or even the fan-favourite (but not actually my favourite) “Dear Maria, Count Me In“?).

So I’m not sure why people are freaking out because ATL has “changed”. I, for one, really like “Something’s Gotta Give” and I can’t wait until Future Hearts drops (I may or may not have pre-ordered it as a birthday gift to myself…April can’t get here fast enough!).