Brand building and ambition burning in ‘Fire’ by Quadri

With great music can come a great brand and that’s exactly what urban pop artist Quadri is aiming for with his new single ‘Fire.’ Influenced by grime musicians and producers like Wiley and Timbaland, Quadri is using his music to make a scorching mark in both the music and clothing industry.

Listen to ‘Fire’ here: https://soundcloud.com/quadri_artist/fire

‘Fire’ has an almost regal elegance to it that you might not expect, showing how Quadri has his sights set high and will stop at nothing until he gets there. The single deals with a prominent point in the music artist’s life when he decided he was going to stop letting life and people keep him back, creating something for the people who mattered and prove those who don’t wrong. This is reflected in the repeating backing vocals of ‘you don’t want to play with fire’ either as a warning to rivals or reminiscent of how people have tried to keep Quadri down in the past. Either way, he is not someone to be messed with or taken for a joke. The classical instruments combined with a demanding beat and rich lyrics give Quadri the title of Grime King among the many others he is creating for himself. Some of those titles are embedded into the lyrics, such as Qh referring to the clothing brand he is developing. Quadri has grand plans in the form of building his clothing brand, wanting it to be something that can stand on its own. He’s already successfully managed to establish his own recording studio from scratch in his home town of Bexley, leaving no doubt about the high levels of ambition and dedication the man embodies. The significant symbolism of ‘Fire’ was not decided on a whim but as a representation of how Quadri is reinventing himself like a Phoenix rising from the ashes and creating something completely new in the form of Qh.

Proving to be a talented music artist and head strong businessman, Quadri has enough drive to conquer the world twice over.

Links:

Website: www.qhmusic.co.uk
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Quadri.Artist/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/quadri_artist/
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/quadri_artist
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/quadri.artist/

 

Review by Skye W. Winwood

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Travel Playlist

Travelling; it’s got to be done because nobody wants to stay at Point A forever. With the Easter Break over, people all over are returning home from holidays abroad or back from home towns to their lives at school/university/work. As great as the time away can be, the long hours of travelling can sometimes be unbearable even at the mere thought and take away precious time that could be used more productively. After my own Easter Break away I was unable to post on this blog as regularly as I usually do so have decided to make a return with a post about the very thing that hindered me. No matter where you will be off to next, here are some songs to fill those long hours and hopefully give you some enjoyment along the way!

Ray Charles ‘Hit the Road, Jack’

Willie Nelson ‘On the Road Again’ 

Tom Cochrane ‘Life is a Highway’ 

Bon Jovi ‘Wanted Dead or Alive’ 

Queen ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ 

Queen ‘I Want To Break Free’ 

Fall Out Boy ’20 Doller Nose Bleed’ 

Fall Out Boy ‘Death Valley’ 

Panic! At the Disco ‘Mad as Rabbits’

Panic! At the Disco ‘Pas De Chavel’ 

Staind ‘So Far Away’ 

Metallic ‘The Unforgiven’ 

Shinedown ‘I’ll Follow You’ 

Stone Cherry ‘Blame It on the Boom Boom’ 

30 Seconds to Mars ‘Walk on Water’

Green Day ‘Holiday’ 

Bowling For Soup ‘1985’

Dommin ‘Dyin’ on the Radio’ 

Dommin ‘There You Are’ 

Five Finger Death Punch ‘Never Enough’ 

Fiver Finger Death Punch ‘M.I.N.E (End This Way)’

Guns ‘N’ Roses ‘Sweet Child of Mine’

My Chemical Romance ‘Bulletproof Heart’

My Chemical Romance ‘Summertime’

The Young Veins ‘Young Veins (Die Tonight)’ 

Audioslave ‘I Am the Highway’ 

Audioslave ‘Getaway Car’ 

Audioslave ‘Gasoline’ 

Red Hot Chilli Peppers ‘Can’t Stop’

Red Hot Chilli Peppers ‘Californication’ 

Red Hot Chilli Peppers ‘By the Way’ 

Counting Crows ‘Accidently in Love’

Travie McCoy ft. Bruno Mars ‘Billionaire’

AD/DC ‘Highway to Hell’ 

Deep Blue Something ‘Breakfast At Tiffany’s’

 

By Skye W. Winwood

Billy Lockett’s new single ‘Empty House’ is bringing in the crowds

Stripped back but still filled with emotion is the perfect way to describe Billy Lockett’s music. After only coming across the artist a few weeks ago, he made a lasting impression. A feeling shared by his ever-growing band of fans and admirers. Now solidifying his place in the music scene with his new single ‘Empty House.’

Listen to ‘Empty House’ live here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kA0q_5A2eN0

Billy Lockett is the kind of musician where finding the words to describe his music is near impossible and would make more sense to just let his songs do the talking. Yet the feelings and emotions he is able to evoke within fans is not something easily contained. Billy has already received much love and support from a variety of fans and celebrities (such as Birdie and Lana Del Ray) and was marked as an artist to keep an eye on early on in his career. Billy’s main attraction is the connection he has with his music, which seems a ridiculous thing to say when all musicians should connect with their music but with Billy it seems to resonate deeper. In every chord and vocal you can hear the raw emotion, labour and dedication he has poured into the song and ‘Empty House’ is no different in this respect. Billy could be described as cautious and protective over his music, not allowing it to become lost in modified sound or an overwhelming of other instruments. He has always believed in organic music, the idea of a simple sound that can contain so much for people to relate to.

Billy writes the kind of songs that could only ever contain the emotions they do from being written in the moment. Created about events or feelings at the time and eradicating the risk of producing ‘fake’ music. Although you are more likely to cry than dance at a Billy Lockett performance, the high rising feelings of euphoria are still created. One of the main reasons the singer-songwriter has gained such a following so quickly is due to the honestly laced within his music. Yet Billy understands that music is a form of personal and therapeutic expression, meaning that his sound could change in the future and ‘Empty House’ could be the beginning of this. Filled with more instrumental variety than previous songs, the new single is a huge step forward for Billy and has the sensational sound of a movie soundtrack.

Whilst performing at London’s Union Chapel, Billy revealed he has signed to East West Records, news that has fans just as excited as the artist. Only just beginning his journey, Billy Lockett has exceptional promise coupled with unquestionable musical talent that will no doubt have him conquering the music world in no time.

Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/billylockettmusic
Twitter: https://twitter.com/billylockett
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/officialbillylockett
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/2lKeiALM1T2TZrOiTYlLNA

Billy Lockett Live!

 

Review by Skye W. Winwood

Discovering The Hush Sound

From the era of emo (2006) rose American indie pop band, The Hush Sound. Originally called The Hush but underwent a name alteration after the band found out it was already taken by a rapper. The change was only fitting after discovering the band’s music and realising it really is a sound that just makes you shut up and listen.

Actually formed back in 2005, but finding the first few steps of success in 2006, the band consists of Greta Salpeter (vocals and piano), Bob Morris (vocals and guitar), Mike Leblanc (bass and backing vocals) and Darren Wilson (drums, percussion and backing vocals). The band was founded by Greta and Bob in Chicago, Illinois and was carried forward solely by the two until deciding their music needed something more. Bob had always been a rock performer whereas Greta was trained as a classical pianist. The two took their talents in different genres to marry them together and create an Evanescene meets Paramore hybrid. Producing songs like ‘Wine Red’ that has a modern day gothic vibe weaved into the sound but with a jumping tune that keeps it fun.

Listen to ‘Wine Red’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1r6MFfMEziE

Released from their second studio album, Like Vines, ‘Wine Red’ is a welcome into the twisted wonderland The Hush Sound have created. Telling the tale of a dying romance in a dark beauty akin to a Brothers Grimm fairy tale. After new bassist Chris Faller (until he was replaced by Mike in 2008) and drummer Darren joined the band, The Hush Sound released their first album, So Sudden, by the end of 2005. The album was titled so to commemorate how quickly things were moving for the band, which is no surprise after finding out they were soon signed by Decaydance Records after some months of performing live. Decaydance Records is the label owned by Fall Out Boy bassist Pete Wentz and has signed other over night success bands like Panic! At The Disco. In fact, it was original guitarist of the band, Ryan Ross, who came across The Hush Sound and showed them to Pete. This has allowed The Hush Sound to tour with big names such as Panic as well as The Academy Is…, Fall Out Boy, The All-American Rejects, Plain White T’s and even have Patrick Stump produce Like Vines.

However, even without the support of fellow indie musicians, The Hush Sound would not have remained undiscovered for long. Having a band that consists of a variety of talent allows them to evoke a plethora of emotions and perfectly convey them through their music. Greta’s versatile vocals allow the band to produce sultry rock songs in the form of ‘Medicine Man’ one minute, only to melt your heart in ‘You Are The Moon’ the next. Switching up vocals to Bob changes the sound again in songs like ‘Sweet Tangerine’ that adds elements of Panic! At The Disco into the mix.

Listen to ‘Medicine Man’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M3v–t8w5qQ
Listen to ‘You Are The Moon’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TpUP0jjicqY
Listen to ‘Sweet Tangerine’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOWBOxW0W1w

It’s baffling how it has taken this long for me to discover The Hush Sound, considering the bands they are associated with and their impressive nearly fourteen-year career. However, they are a band I would recommend to anyone with an interest in genre blending music filled with poetic lyrics.

Links:
Website: http://thehushsound.org/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thehushsound
Twitter: https://twitter.com/thehushsound
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/1RCoE2Dq19lePKhPzt9vM5

 

By Skye W. Winwood

Shuba’s down-to-earth single ‘Stupid’

Trying to break through into a new, niche musical market can prove to be difficult and sometimes near impossible. Yet, putting yourself forward in an established, mainstream market can prove just as challenging in the attempts to stand out from the crowd. Latest entry to the market, hopeful pop-star Shuba, is bringing a beauty to the R&B genre we haven’t heard in some time but echoes what we know.

With the familiar champagne pop sound, we have come to expect from the genre, Shuba is really putting herself out there to try and claim the music as her own, working to put her stamp of uniqueness on the genre. Her new single, ‘Stupid,’ is a commercial track that has elements and a sound that will appeal to a world of young audiences. Whilst ‘Stupid’ is something artists like Arianna Grande and Selena Gomez have produced, it holds an older R&B sound akin to Destiny’s Child and JoJo that is not heard as much anymore. Although the message and sound may have been done before, Shuba still manages to incorporate elements of Asian rhythms into her music. The singer-songwriter has already gained herself a growing and, more importantly loyal, fanbase. Her music appeals to her fans because she acts as a voice for the generation listening, something every era needs. Voicing the worries and troubles of the younger crowd in a track of sweet vocals and a catchy chorus.

Shuba grew up in the US and is Chicago based with Indian heritage that has allowed her to mix with people from largely diverse backgrounds. Acting as a voice for her fans has allowed Shuba to come across as down-to-earth and eager to connect with her fans. No doubt a huge part of her appeal is her natural charm and charisma that is also put into her music. Already having experience working with the likes of Matt Hennessey (who has worked with Beyoncé and John Legend) and Zak Fox (Chance the Rapper) has allowed Shuba to make those all important musical connections and begin her up and coming career as a singer-songwriter.

‘Stupid’ is out now with Shuba’s forthcoming self-tiled EP to be released in late February 2018.

Links:
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/shubamusic
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3Uios5Yyv4i8EBs9H3DUY5
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/shubamusic/

 

Review by Skye W. Winwood

Discovering BTS

Sometimes music only needs to be felt to be loved. The connection made through sound alone with the lyrics being secondary. Listening to a band who don’t perform in your native tongue can seem pointless to some. However bands like BTS are giving fans a whole new perspective on music altogether. After being introduced to the seven member K-pop group through an internet friend, I have been swept up in a new and completely engaging wave of music. Not only is the band’s music jaw dropping in its genre range but the members themselves preform to a soaring level of dedication and effort.

Listen to the first BTS song I was exposed to, ‘Not Today’, here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9DwzBICPhdM

‘Not Today’ is an explosive introduction into BTS, I will admit, however it’s a song and music video that completely encapsulates the band from their high powered vocals to insane choreography. Each of their music videos containing the same cinematic style and magnetism, with their performance style being nothing short of polished. The band have managed to connect with fans beyond their music through not shying away from ‘topics they deem important even in a conservative society.’ Topics such as death and loss as well as school bullying and mental illness. With a taste of their music upon your tongue, we can now delve further into the band themselves.

BTS is a seven member band that were put together by Big Hit Entertainment with various line-up changes from the years 2010 to 2012. In 2010 and 2011 auditions were held for a possible new boy band who eventually became J-Hope, V, Jimin, Rap Monster (RM), Jungkook, Jin and Suga. The name BTS correlates to many things (such as the Korean expression Bangtan Sonyeondan meaning ‘Bulletproof Boy Scouts’ and Bangtan Boys) but has most recently been announced to stand for ‘Beyond The Scene.’

In the beginning of their career, BTS only saw moderate success from their song covers on Youtube and SoundCloud but began gaining attention through various forms of social media. In June of 2013, the band released their debut album 2 Cool 4 Skool, which was to be the first part in their School Trilogy series. Most of their early singles, such as ‘No More Dream’, failed to make it high into the charts however the band persevered through other forms of promotion. For example the guys starred in their own variety show based on a fake broadcast station that allowed fans to get to the boys behind the music. The release of the second in the School Trilogy series, O!RUL8,2?, in the same year, contained the topically important single ‘N.O.’ The single holds this title due to the fact that it is a critique on the educational industrial complex, the music video depicting the solider like obedience expected of pupils.

Listen to the song and watch the music video for ‘N.O’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mmgxPLLLyVo

By the end of 2013, BTS were slowly gaining more and more popularity and were being recognised with several New Artist of the Year Awards. Once the boys released their final instalment of their School Trilogy series, Skool Luv Affair, they saw success through topping the Gaon Chart as well as peaking at number three on Billboard’s World Albums Chart. From here BTS participated in many events over the year such as acting as judges for a K-pop cover dance competition in Russia and attending KCON in Los Angeles. In 2014 their first Korean studio album, Dark & Wild, was released and sold over 200,000 copies. Dark & Wild explored a different sound to any of the School Trilogy series and contained the singles ‘Danger’ and ‘War of Hormone’ and saw the band entering a more R&B/rock genre to their previous music. ‘War of Hormone’ received some backlash due to the lyrics being labelled as misogynistic causing the band’s label to issue an apology in 2016.

Listen to ‘Danger’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bagj78IQ3l0

And ‘War of Hormone’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XQmpVHUi-0A

With success rapidly building for the boys, it was only inevitable they began to enter the mainstream by 2015, releasing the EP, The Most Beautiful Moment in Life, Part 1. The EP was listed in Fuse’s ‘27 Best Albums of 2015 So Far’ and was the only Korean album on the whole list. The lead single ‘I Need U’ became the band’s first music video to hit over 100 million views on YouTube and won first place on SBS MTV’s The Show. After this, their single ‘Dope’ hit number three on Billboard’s World Digital Chart and was accompanied by a music video depicting the band members in different styles of career dress.

Watch the music video for ‘Dope’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVwAVbKYYeM

Throughout 2015 and leading into 2016, BTS continued to release multiple singles as well as commencing with their 2015 Live Trilogy Episode: The Red Bullet world tour and being a part of the Summer Sonic Festival tour in Japan. Their EP, The Most Beautiful Moment In Life, Part 2, also topped Billboard’s World Albums Chart, remaining in that position for several weeks. This made BTS the first K-pop band to own this achievement and lead on to the boys winning Best World Performer at the 2015 Mnet Asian Music Awards. In 2016, BTS released their second Korean studio album, Wings, to sell over 500,000 pre-order copies in the first week alone. The success of this album entered them at number 62 on the UK Official Album Charts and solidified them in history for achieving high levels of success in the western world. Their music video for ‘Blood, Sweat and Tears’ broke a Youtube record by gaining 6 million views in only twenty-four hours.

Watch ‘Blood, Sweat and Tears’ here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hmE9f-TEutc

This year has seen BTS appear everywhere you look, with fans all over the world eagerly anticipating their new music. Songs such as ‘MIC Drop’ and ‘DNA’ flooring fans in typical BTS style with captivating music and even more hypnotising music videos. As their success continues to grow, I doubt we will be seeing the end of BTS any time soon.

Links:

Website: http://bts.ibighit.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BTS_twt?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ibighit/videos

 

By Skye W. Winwood

Dallon Weekes’ departure from Panic! At The Disco

Out with the old and in with the new, is the mind set of many of the world’s population with New Year’s Eve rapidly approaching. A time for putting to bed the past and allowing us to wake up the new opportunities presented to us in the new year.

In a turn of events fans can argue we saw coming, Dallon Weekes has announced his official departure from punk/pop band, Panic! At The Disco. Through the medium of social media Dallon wrote, ‘For the last eight years I’ve had the incredible opportunity to perform in Panic! At The Disco…I’m grateful for the chance I’ve had to be part of [the band]…I will always consider myself indebted to those who made me feel welcome…you changed my life. Thank you all.’ A heartfelt farewell to those he will be leaving behind but also an encouragement for fans of both the band and himself to follow him on his new musical adventure.

Dallon joined Panic! back in 2009 after the departure of band members Ryan Ross and Jon Walker, on a temporary touring basis as the band’s bassist. However, in 2010, his ‘temporary’ status was upgraded to an official, contributing member. Panic! At The Disco greatly benefited from the decision to take Dallon on full time for he was able to contribute artistically to the band’s fourth studio album, Too Weird To Live! Too Rare To Die! The public were made aware of Dallon’s new status via Twitter half way through 2012. For Panic! At The Disco’s fifth album, Death of a Bachelor, Dallon took a step back once more, not contributing to the album and returning to be a touring member only. With the solo direction Panic! seems to be taking, it has not come as a shock to many fans that, on December 27th of this year, Dallon revealed he would be permanently leaving Panic! At The Disco.

The initial reaction of many fans has been disappointment and upset to see Dallon leaving but many people, amongst myself, are eager to see how this new creative freedom will develop in his own band, I Don’t Know How But They Found Me. IDKHow is a project Dallon has been working on with ex Falling In Reverse drummer Ryan Seamen. Already with two songs released (‘Modern Day Cain’ and ‘Choke’) the band are gaining quick traction with their songs preforming immensely well in the iTunes charts.

Having been given a brief taste into Dallon’s musical talent working with Panic!, and beginning to develop his individual style with IDKHow, I, along with many fans, encourage people to continue supporting Dallon in the future. The introduction into IDKHow has softened the blow of Dallon no longer being a part of Panic! and fans are eager to see the direction Dallon will take things in.

Links:

Website: https://www.idkhow.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/DallonWeekes

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPeiIDYMwZQpL7aocblfqtQ

‘I Don’t Know How But They Found Me new single ‘Choke’’: https://musicnews2dayblog.wordpress.com/2017/11/01/i-dont-know-how-but-they-found-me-new-single-choke/

 

By Skye W. Winwood

Remembering Jonghyun

With the Christmas period slowly coming to an end and the new year just around the corner, it is important to remember those who will not be moving on with us. In the modern day of invasive technology and overwhelming press, celebrities all over the world are having to find ways to cope with the growing pressure put on them by the media. Unfortunately, sometimes, the struggle becomes too much and leads to the tragic and heart-breaking reality that some celebrities can no longer live this kind of life anymore. With all the artists in the music world already gone in these recent years, one recent death has shattered the hearts of many and left a feeling of emptiness we can only console with one another.

Jonghyun is most known for being a member of the K-pop group, SHINee, as well as being a solo artist, radio host and author. Born April 8th 1990 in South Korea as Kim Jong-hyun, Jonghyun saw fame over many medias and multiple layers of success as an artist. On December 18th 2017, Jonghyun took his own life due to reasons people believe are related to a long time battle with depression. The details of his death will not be discussed in this blog post out of respect for the sudden and recent loss felt by family, friends and fans, but I believe it is important to highlight the life and achievements of a beloved musician.

In recent years, Korean music has made its way over to both the UK and USA to enter the mainstream and become the new music playing through everyone’s earphones. Bands like BTS, Exo and, of course, SHINee have propelled the genre of K-pop into the western music chats where it only continues to rise to the top. Jonghyun was a large part of this movement with his work as a vocalist in both SHINee and his participation in the group project S.M. The Ballad.

Jonghyun began his musical career in 2008 when he was chosen to be a member of the boy group, SHINee along with Lee Tae-min, Choi Min-ho, Key and Onew. Jonghyun quickly established his place in the band and by 2009 was writing lyrics and was the lyricist for “Juliette” the group’s fourth Korean single. The translated lyrics (from Korean to English) are a beautiful arrangement of a burning confession of love, unsurprisingly influenced by the classic Romeo and Juliet story. Jonghyun explained he wanted to create something people could relate to and saw the iconic story as something everyone could understand. SHINee, along with Jonghyun, soon began to cause a storm with their fashion trends spreading among students and their music reaching overseas. The band have been highly praised for their insanely synchronized and intricate dance routines as well as being labelled for being one of the best live vocalists in K-pop.

With the success of SHINee behind his back, Jonghyun began development on other projects such as providing vocals for the song ‘Let’s Go’, which was written with the intent of increasing public participation in the 2010 G-20 Seoul summit. Along with this, Jonghyun has been recognised for his support concerning issues that are otherwise frowned upon. For example in 2013, Jonghyun changed his Twitter profile picture to an image that indicated support for the LGBTQ+ community despite receiving negative backlash from a Korean website claiming to be members of the SHINee fanclub. In 2013, Jonghyun also found his talent as a composer with the song ‘A Gloomy Clock’ that was featured in IU’s third Korean album, Modern Times. This led to another piece called ‘Red Candle’ that was composed and written by Jonghyun. In 2014, S.M. The Ballad returned with Jonghyun being the only original member.

By this time, Jonghyun had quite the history, talent and experience behind him and decided to begin working on his own solo album. In January 2015, he released his debut solo album, Base, which was quickly devoured positively by critics. The album peaked at first place on both the Billboard’s World Album Chart as well as the Gaon Album Chart. Jonghyun soon began working alongside other popular artists such as Exo and Lim Kim, acting as a songwriter and composer for both.

After conquering the music world, Jonghyun moved onto new but not completely unknown territory with his experience as a song writer. September 2015 saw the publishing of Skeleton Flower: Things That Have Been Released and Set Free, a book containing Jonghyun’s experiences and inspirations. In October 2015, he was chosen as one of the top five K-pop idols through a survey conducted by forty anonymous music industry officials.

The shocking and emotionally charring news of his passing has left many fans lost and seeking solace in Jonghyun’s music. The very serious issue of depression in the celebrity world is sometimes overshadowed and forgotten until someone else is pushed too far. Jonghyun will be dearly missed by millions but we can hope his death highlights the dangers of ignoring mental illness in ourselves and those around us, and contribute to the world moving forward with a higher state of awareness.

 

By Skye W. Winwood

Christmas Playlist 2017

Christmas is the most magical time of the year but how can there be magic without music? To infuse your festive day with a chorus of angels, guitar riffs and little drummer boys, here is a Christmas playlist of 25 pop, rock, classic and everything in between songs filled with holiday themes.

Fall Out Boy – ‘Yule Shoot Your Eye Out’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SW3X7-gk8q0

Known for their quirky, catchy and clever song titles and lyrics, ‘Yule Shoot Your Eye Out’ is an original Christmas song in true Fall Out Boy fashion. Of course, Christmas is a time of celebration but sometimes it can also include moments of reflection on past relationships, especially those lost. ‘Yule Shoot Your Eye Out’ is a beautiful heart breaking Christmas tune that will be stuck on your tongue all day.

Mariah Carey/My Chemical Romance – ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’

Mariah: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXQViqx6GMY

MCR: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8rjrPIGZ5U

From Christmas heart ache to Christmas heart longing, Maria Carey has provided one of the most iconic Christmas songs of the modern period. From the first tinkling of those bells in the intro, you know you are about to be propelled into a world of snowy Christmas nostalgia and impossible to reach high notes. Alongside Maria’s original, My Chemical Romance recorded their own cover which could almost be a completely different song, for those of you tired of the same old same old this year.

Set This Off – ‘This Christmas (I’ll Burn It To The Ground)’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Scg_VG982o

If the Grinch had written a Christmas song, this would be it. Devoid of the stereotypical festive cheer and seasonal harmony, ‘This Christmas (I’ll Burn It To The Ground)’ is a punk rock song for those who still want to celebrate Christmas but have had enough of all the commercialised traditions.

The Pogues ft. Kirsty MacColl – ‘Fairytale of New York’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9jbdgZidu8

Released in 1987, ‘Fairytale of New York’ has remained a Christmas classic throughout many of our lives. The calm intro into the song embodies the feelings of calm relaxation we all hope to experience over the Christmas period. However, once the song kicks in at about the minute and a half mark, we tumble into the true chaos but still enjoyable season we all know and love.

Panic! At The Disco – ‘Feels Like Christmas’

Of course, I couldn’t make a Christmas playlist without including Panic! At The Disco’s new Christmas song ‘Feels Like Christmas.’ Although, only released this year, the jaunty, joyous tune will no doubt find a permanent place on everyone’s Christmas playlist in years to come.

Slade – ‘Merry Xmas Everybody’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0A8KT365wlA

IT’S CHRIIIIIIISTMAS, need I say more? Slade asks the important Christmas questions before launching into a rock ‘n’ roll Christmas classic. Recently, mysterious rock band, Wartoad, have released a cover of the much loved song that will help the homeless with the proceeds collected from people buying the single.

New Found Glory – ‘Nothing For Christmas’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2q9VOAJyuYE

Of course we all love receiving gifts and the excitement of surprise on Christmas morning but New Found Glory’s ‘Nothing For Christmas’ reminds us of the true reason for the season. A song about love, appreciation and a heartfelt message that one person could be enough to make Christmas everything this year.

Andy Williams – ‘It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gFtb3EtjEic

A musical masterpiece that belongs on the Broadway stage, ‘It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year’ is exactly what it says on the tin. Even to those who do not celebrate the holiday, it cannot be denied the atmosphere and love spread throughout the season is felt by all. Including the classics of an iconic Christmas, this song is timeless and can always guarantee to have everyone up and dancing every year.

All Time Low – ‘Fool’s Holiday’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jX74HsAVWr0

With a sound akin to The Darkness’ ‘Christmas Time (Don’t Let The Bells End’, All Time Low’s ‘Fool’s Holiday’ is packed full of festive metaphors that will have you singing and swaying this holiday period. The song is a perfect combination of punk and beauty that was tailored made for fans of an alternative Christmas.

Tony Bennett/Michael Buble – ‘Winter Wonderland’

Tony Bennett:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lSb-EGXMToI

Michael Buble: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oIKt5p3UmXg

Both versions of this song are beautiful renditions of a holiday classic, it was impossible to choose just one to include in the playlist. So, my Christmas present to you, is the gift of both versions of ‘Winter Wonderland’, whether your more for Tony’s dreamlike sequence or Michael’s upbeat jazz tune. Whatever your mood this Christmas, ‘Winter Wonderland’ should always be included.

Sia – ‘Santa’s Coming For Us’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3EYjVPRClU

Although the title may sound a little menacing, the actual sound of ‘Santa’s Coming For Us’ is a festive pop track blessed with Sia’s amazing vocals. The singer’s signature sound has been given a Christmas sprinkle and provides a fun filled track that is only one part of her new Christmas album, Everyday Is Christmas.

Queen – ‘Thank God It’s Christmas’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6V5mtUff6ik

Gone but never forgotten, Freddy Mercury has blessed Christmas with his soulful, harrowing vocals in Queen’s ‘Thank God It’s Christmas.’ The rock ballad was released in 1984 and spent six weeks in the UK charts over the Christmas period and into the new year. The song is a musical release of all the built up tension we feel during the year until we’re crying ‘thank God it’s Christmas’ along with the song.

Relient K – ’12 Days of Christmas’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PA6QsHdXwdI

Tired of the same old Christmas songs? Relient K give a punk revamp to ’12 Days Of Christmas’ and turns it into a head banging track you never would have suspected could become a new Christmas favourite. The humorous track includes every single day from the original song with the band’s own spin thrown into the mix to turn it into something completely new. The fast pace of the track will have you tongue tied even more than usual trying to keep up but no doubt you’ll have fun giving it a good go.

Wham!/Jimmy Eat World – ‘Last Christmas’

Wham!: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E8gmARGvPlI

Jimmy Eat World: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3J7trGtpB0

A heart wrenching song that simply has to be played at Christmas no matter how it pulls the tears from your eyes. However, if you’ve had enough pf being emotionally tortured by the classic by Wham!, Jimmy Eats World have given the song a punk cover that is a little more upbeat but no less heart breaking.

Weezer – ‘We Wish You A Merry Christmas’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQ-6sSRej9Q

Even some of the most festive people cannot stand Christmas carols but Weezer are here to change your mind. ‘We Wish You A Merry Christmas’ is an alternative cover of the timeless classic that will appeal to even the most scrooge-like of you out there.

Elvis Presley – ‘Blue Christmas’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5I2f1UJjiAA

It can’t be Christmas without the king, even years after his passing, albums are still being released around the festive season containing the hound dog’s deep and hypnotising vocals. ‘Blue Christmas’ is a smooth yet soaring track from another time when romance is all people wanted for Christmas.

The Brobecks – ‘Christmas Drag’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8w3Vmme361Y

Another song for people who are just not feeling the festive atmosphere this year, ‘Christmas Drag’ reminisces about Christmases past and the want for something new next year. It highlights that not every year can be the perfect Christmas time but next year is only around the corner.

Fall Out Boy – ‘What’s This?’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vb1ZS6lMFuk

Whilst releasing their own festive tunes, Fall Out Boy have also used their musical talent to cover song’s like The Nightmare Before Christmas’s ‘What’s This?’ Originally written and performed by Danny Elfman, the band manage to make the song their own and was included on the Nightmare Revisited album.

The Darkness – ‘Christmas Time (Don’t Let The Bells End)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQhuoY5h2kE

Manging to pull off a Christmas rock classic back in 2003, it may possibly be one of the band’s most well-known songs outside of the alternative community. To this day, many of us still don’t know exactly what all of the lyrics are from listening to the song alone but it doesn’t stop us singing along at the top of our lungs.

Dido – ‘Christmas Day’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMFzQhR9dJw

In beautiful Dido style, ‘Christmas Day’ is an acoustic track telling the tale of a passing love and the wait each Christmas for that love to return. The perfect song to wind down the hectic, family filled Christmas day that transports you into a love story that will go on and on with each replay.

Panic! At The Disco – ‘White Christmas’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Z1j8wB1pmI

Akin to the sound of a barber shop quartet, Panic! At The Disco’s ‘White Christmas’ sounds like it was recorded earlier than 2008. A short and sweet track consisting of only a minute and a half, it’s the perfect interlude between that hearty dinner and the wait for Christmas pudding.

Blink 182 – ‘I Won’t Be Home For Christmas

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sy9_JjLnmZI

After Panic’s ‘White Christmas’, something is needed to wake you back up for a night of joy filled drinking. Blink 182 will provide this pick me up with their ‘I Won’t Be Home For Christmas’, a song that tells the ugly truth about Christmas some of us experience. The too invasive time of year when we’re forced to play polite to people we would avoid at any other time during the year. ‘I Won’t Be Home For Christmas’ is backed with an upbeat sound that turns the otherwise depressing lyrics into something humorous and relatable.

New Found Glory – ‘Ex-Miss’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYGEzmk3UKo

Already having one on this playlist for a new found love, New Found Glory also highlight the other side of Christmas romance with their song ‘Ex-Miss’. A combination of Christmas bell’s and shredding guitar, this is one for anyone who hasn’t had the best year but are armed and ready to beat the next.

Never Shout Never – ’30 Days’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wb0D2IciaxU

A slow and simple track looking back on the year and wishing there was just a little more time before the New Year arrives. A song about last chances and making the most of the few days we have left of the current year whilst also being a song thanking those loved ones in our life that make everything worth it.

Relient K – ‘Merry Christmas, Here’s To Many More’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f5J55oKEZMo

Possibly my personal favourite Christmas song, Relient K’s ‘Merry Christmas, Here’s To Many More’ is a song about making it through the tough times faced throughout the year. A song capturing the wholesome message of the holiday season, that you are loved and cared for even when you don’t realise it. It’s the perfect song to finish off this playlist as well as the Christmas day, the lyrics simply about overcoming whatever has tried to drag you down and promising the reward of many more years of joy to come.

 

Merry Christmas everybody and all the best in the New Year!

 

By Skye W. Winwood

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