Last week Lucy Whittaker released her debut EP Only One. I had never listened to any of Lucy's music before this EP, so I was really excited to listen for the first time. The first track on the EP, You, is a really great opening song. Whenever I listen to this song I can imagine it being played on the radio and at festivals, as it sounds perfect for summer. Lucy's vocals are also shown off really well throughout, showing the listeners her talent from the very start. You is a perfect pop song, with really lovely lyrics and it's definitely something that I would choose to listen to all the time. Giving her Track by Track to Pop Affairs, Lucy said, "You is about falling in love. I was at a place in my life where I was really happy being single, and wasn't looking for a relationship at all. Suddenly I realised that I was falling for someone - it's like it hit me in the face all of a sudden. I decided to write You about that 'oh my God, I wasn't expecting that' feeling."
The next track on the EP is the lead single from the EP, Only One. As this was the lead single, I had high expectations before listening to it, and luckily I wasn't disappointed! The first thing that struck me about this song was that Lucy seems to have already developed her own individual style, which demonstrates her talent. While her genre may be pop, Lucy manages to add her own style to her songs making them easily identifiable as her. My favourite thing about Only One is the inspirational and motivating lyrics. It's really easy to listen to a song and not pay any attention to the words. but with this song you can't help but listen and be inspired. Talking about Only One, Lucy said, "Only One (the lead single from the EP) was written at a time when I was constantly in meetings with record labels. I was trudging though London with heavy bags and absolutely exhausted and I realised that I needed a motivation song to keep me going. What better song to motivate myself than one written about my life at the time?!"
The next song on the EP is the slower Alone. The track is much more emotional than the previous songs on the EP, therefore showing how versatile Lucy is as an artist. There's something about Alone that reminds me of Years & Years, and I really like it! When explaining the track, Lucy said, "Alone is about doing the right thing, not the easy thing. My previous relationship reached a point where it wasn't healthy for the two of us to stay together - we tried to make it work but things weren't meant to be. I wrote Alone as a way of trying to digest the emotions I was feeling at the time, and justify my decision to walk away from the relationship."
The final song on Only One is the upbeat Take Me Away. What I like about this song is the strong build up, leading into a fun and catchy chorus. I can imagine this song doing extremely well in the charts, not only because it's a fun song, but because once again Lucy has successfully shown off her vocals! When talking about Take Me Away, Lucy said, "Last year I was at a point in my life where I felt like I needed to escape from everything with the person I loved, and as a result Take Me Away was born! For me, the track is about a moment where life is overwhelming, and all you want is to remove yourself from the world."
Usually when listening to an EP there may be one or two songs that I don't like as much as the others, but this wasn't the case for Only One. I honestly enjoyed every song on this EP and I would definitely recommend giving it a listen!
This week I discovered up and coming singer-songwriter CoCo Mageeda. Her new single On a Weekend is available right now to download and stream, and I would recommend anyone reading this to do so!
When listening to this song I find it really hard to believe that CoCo isn't already an established and successful singer. The song is both catchy and memorable, with great production as well. On a Weekend is definitely radio friendly, not to mention the fact that her voice is also really good! Whenever I listen to the song I get a feeling that this is just the start for CoCo Mageeda, as she seems to have all the right qualities to become a successful artist.
Overall I am really impressed with this song, and I expect to hear more from CoCo Mageeda in the future!
Over the years different artists and DJs have remixed/remade classic songs, which have subsequently done well in the charts. I've always been torn as to whether I like these remixes or not, because while they are bringing old songs back into the charts, sometimes the remixes don't do the original any justice. For example, in 2015 Sigala released Easy Love, a remix based on the popular Jackson 5 song ABC. While this song managed to get to number one in the UK, I really wasn't a fan. The whole song sounded like a chipmunk was trying to sing, and did absolutely no justice to The Jackson 5! It's songs like that that make me wary of new remixes heading for the charts. However, recently there have been a few remakes that have actually been good. Recently James Hype released More Than Friends (feat. Kelli-Leigh) which is currently doing very well in the UK charts. More Than Friends is a remake of the classic Don't Let Go (Love) by En Vogue, making it quite hard to do such a legendary song any justice. However, the song is actually really good. There is a lot of originality to it, so while the En Vogue influence is there, James Hype has managed to really make it his own. This is similar to another recent release by Rojdar (feat JAYS) with a remake of Ignition by R.Kelly. Rojdar's remake is quite similar to the original in terms of vocals, but the remixed chorus is where it really stands out. I really like the original Ignition so when I heard the remake for the first time, I was quite sceptical. While I'm always going to prefer the original to the remake, I do really like Rojdar's remix. It sounds similar enough to the original for people to love it, but the twist for the chorus is keeping it new and fresh.
The remakes most of the time are good, but a personal favourite of mine is Sex by Cheat Codes x Kris Kross Amsterdam. Their remake of Lets Talk About Sex by Salt-n-Pepa I think is on par with, if not better, than the original. 99% of the time I prefer the original to the remake, however on this occasion I actually prefer the remake! In general though I think that artists need to be careful when remaking classics, because if they get it wrong it could be quite hard to come back from.
YouTube links below to all of the remakes mentioned in the post:
Easy Love - Sigala:
More Than Friends - James Hype (feat. Kelli-Leigh):
Ignition - Rojdar (feat JAYS):
Sex - Cheat Codes x Kris Kross Amsterdam:
When Sam Smith announced that he would be taking a break from music, I was genuinely gutted. I've always really enjoyed Sam's music, and find his voice truly mesmerising. When I found out a few weeks ago that new music would be coming 'soon', I was elated. From then on all I could think about was what Sam's new music would sound like. Would the genre of his music be the same? Will he be exploring a new sound? Has he completely changed himself from the Sam Smith that we all know and love? However after hearing Too Good at Goodbyes for the first time today, I am so happy that Sam hasn't changed at all, as his voice is still just as stunning, if not better! The piano throughout the song is simply beautiful, especially in combination with Sam's vocals, making the song show just how immensely talented Sam is by highlighting his extraordinary voice.
Something that really makes this song stand out from the others is the use of the choir/powerful backing singers in the chorus. The powerful chorus is captivating to listen to, and makes you just want to join them in singing along. I love the fact that this song is classic Sam Smith, yet he's still managed to produce a song that stands alone and doesn't sound like any of his previous hits. This is an incredible thing to be able to achieve, as sometimes artists end up making music that sounds very similar to their older stuff.
The anticipation and build up towards this comeback was huge, and with Too Good at Goodbyes finally being released today, the world can finally hear what Sam has been working on! The single really is stunning, and I feel like it is one of those songs that you will never get bored of listening to. Overall a really brilliant comeback!
Listen to 'Too Good at Goodbyes' on YouTube below:
The Vamps have once again teamed up with DJ Matoma for their new single Staying Up. Their last collaboration on the song All Night was released late last year, and is still one of my favourite songs. Therefore when I heard that they were working together again I was really excited, but also had stupidly high expectations! All Night was one of my favourite songs released last year, so I really wanted Staying Up to be on the same, if not higher, level.
After my first listen of Staying Up I already loved it! The song is a clear example of a great summer feel good song. Both the lyrics and the beat make the listener feel uplifted, and even though the lyrics are arguably a bit cheesy, that's something that I really like about it. You really can't go wrong with cheesy pop music, especially as there seems to be a lot of judgement towards artists these days, so it's nice to listen to a genuinely fun song. There doesn't seem to be any hidden messages and agendas within Staying Up, just pure harmless fun.
With every song by The Vamps, I always say how much I love the vocals, and Staying Up is no exception. Lead singer Brad has such a distinct voice, making all of The Vamps' songs easily identifiable, arguably a very good quality to have!
After listening to the song, I decided to run a Twitter poll to see what other people thought about the new release, and a got a big response from the fans! I asked "What do you think of The Vamps and Matoma's new single Staying Up?", and in total a huge 1,263 people voted, and they all seemed to be in agreement about the answer. A mere 3% voted that they don't like the song, while only 10% voted that they thought it was okay (not good, but not bad). However a staggering 87% of those who voted said that they love it! @thevamps135 said "Amazing. I love it, it's such a good summer song, it's really good. Been listening all day", with @metallic_lilo also saying "It's amazing. One of my favourite tracks now!!!". Some fans also commented on Matoma and The Vamps' collaboration, with @CondorAdore tweeting "Love the song. Matoma and The Vamps make a great team". This poll therefore proved that The Vamps fans are clearly very happy with this new release!
Overall this is another brilliant collaboration from The Vamps and Matoma, and I hope that there are many more to come in the future!
See below the responses to the poll: