five new album releases to listen to

There are many, many albums still to come in 2016 (Metronomy, I'm looking at you) but the past four weeks has also seen the release of some of 2016's best releases, heres a round up of five albums released this past month that you should gift your ears with as soon as possible.

I'd also like to add that I spent a significant period of time (more than I care to admit) trying to write some editorial style, snappy reviews of each of these albums and in doing so I realised how freakin' difficult it is, props to those of you who review albums because it is oddly difficult to describe an albums sound. Also, call me an idiot but I'm incredibly bad at pinpointing an albums genre, so I suggest you neglect reading the boring, awfully generic text and just listen to these five amazing records immediately.

Beach Skulls - Slow Grind
UK three piece Beach Skulls set the scene for summer with their debut LP, Slow Grind, featuring jangly guitars and upbeat melodies. Slow Grind combines sounds of 50s/60s rock and roll with modern grungy vocals for a dreamy and catchy result. Stand out tracks include Baby's A Liar and Melted, which feels like it could have dropped straight out of a Tarantino film. Try this is you like The Strokes, The Last Shadow Puppets or Chastity Belt. Slow Grind was released 29th April 2016 on Punk Slime Recordings, Ltd LP available here.

99.9%, which dropped May 6th, is the debut album from DJ and producer KAYTRANADA. KAYTRANADA brings it with an electrohouse album featuring big vocal names such as Anderson Paak, Alunageorge, Craig David and Vic Mensa which give the album its distinct hip hop vibe. Favourite tracks include Weight Off, which is mostly instrumental featuring strong funky bass and Glowed Up (feat Anderson Paak) which features some nice synth and snares. 99.9% LP is available for pre-order here.


Eagulls - Ullages
Leeds five piece Eagulls second album comes in the form of Ullages, released on May 13th 2016 on Partisan Records. Ullages is a post-punk LP with surfy guitar sounds similar to those found on Beach Skulls debut album. The album is a steady burner which flows well with stand out vocals striking a very similar chord to those from Robert Smith from The Cure. Listen to Blume and Heads or Tails for upbeat sounds yet angsty lyrics. Sounds similar to those found on early albums from The Smiths add to this albums 80's feel. Ullages LP  is available here.

Oddissee - The Odd Tape
Revision means seeking out instrumental albums and this is the most enjoyable instrumental album to be found at the moment. Released on May 13th 2016 on Mello Music Group, The Odd Tape is hip-hop instrumental at its finest, with nods to jazz in the notes provided by the piano through out. There is nothing like putting this album on and getting completely lost in it, which is extremely easy to do. No matter whether instrumental albums aren't your thing, I dare you to listen to this and not enjoy it. Ltd LP available for pre order here.

James Blake - The Colour in Anything
Is there anything James Blake cannot do? Blake's strong and unique vocals pull together this electronic album perfectly. Blake's third album is one to chill to, the electronic sound, peaceful melodies and vocals combined with Blake's skills as a producer give this album a unique and heartfelt feel. With appearances from Bon Iver and writing credits from Frank Ocean, this is set to be one of my favourite albums on 2016. P.s. f.o.r.e.v.e.r. is dreamy and Waves Know Shores is another firm favourite. The Colour in Anything was released on 6th May 2016 on Polydor and the LP is available for preorder here.


Sugar Coated Bitter Truth

Lets play a game of guess the famous tourist location...

We spent New Year away from home this year as I find the hype insufferable and I just wanted to get away from it all and surround myself with strangers, I know, I'm a horrible person... but seriously what is with the pressure to have the best NYE of your life each year? I have a post coming up about our break in full because it was amazing and really worth the trip, plus is such a picturesque place.

With the weather being so bad lately and trying to juggle life, a full time job and a part time degree I thought it was long overdue that I dust off the ole Canon and get snapping. Seriously, how do people blog full time and work full time, it is beyond me - hats off to y'all.

So.... for Christmas, my - not so secret - Santa bought me an array of amazing gifts. I always like friend gifts (yes I have realised I'm talking Christmas and New Year and there's already easter eggs in the shops) because you get the things you reaaaaally love because they know you so well, I was not disappointed. One of my gifts was a little known book by Alexa Chung, have you heard of it? It's called IT.. ok, ok, I confess I haven't owned it before now but oh my god am I in love? yes. The book had me rethinking my whole approach to life! I know its not meant to be that serious but I am easily inspired and I get carried away haha.. so I've decided to approach fashion differently and dress for my shape more, we'll see how that one goes. Basically what I'm saying is that I bought some trousers because I really just want to BE Alexa Chung and here they are in all of their glory. I must confess I did throw this outfit on, on New Years Day because it was cold and slightly damp and I had run out of options so it's a bit of an array of colours but to be fair I don't think myself much good at putting clothes together anyway so we'll call it an attempt.

I've also recently come to realise the importance of shoes. Good shoes. My feet are ruined at 21 from my years of wearing ill fitting and poor quality shoes and I have bunions left right and centre, disgusting I know. I've probably had more blisters than anyone - I'd put money on it. These brogues from Hobbs however are just to die for. They took a bit of softening but now they are just buttery soft leather that fit so comfortably with a great quality sole and they look nice, I just like them a lot. However they are starting to get a little tired looking and so I spent most of my time away looking for some new, good quality shoes for my poor feet and I did struggle but I complained enough times that I think Jake gave in just to stop hearing about my feet and shoes and their importance that he treat me to some shiny new Hobbs brogues which are BRONZE. Honestly, they're unreal. AND, they go with everything. Win.

As for the title of the post, it's what I'm calling one of the best songs EVER, I'm adding it below and I suggest you  listen to it immediately. On Saturday we went to see Slaves at the Ritz in Manchester and it was genuinely up there with one of the best gigs I've ever been to, although I'm not quite sure anybody could knock Justice from the top spot. Seriously though... they entered stage to Vengaboys (!!!), I mean COME ON! They're cool af (and they'd probably hate that I made that statement).

Also if you didn't guess, and please, feel free to be mighty ashamed if you didn't since it's all over the shop signs, these lovely streets are the infamous Shambles of York.



I might start taking photographs of every outfit I wear. I put this outfit on and looked in the mirror and thought that it looked fine but on the photos here I'm not convinced. I took these photos on one of the beaches local to me and saw the most beautiful violet sunset. It's too easy to take whats around you for granted and lust after greener pastures but sometimes its worth pausing and taking in what is around you and appreciating it for all of its beauty. This night was definitely one of these moments.

I take self portraits with a tripod and remote usually on my own, so its sometimes really nice to have this creative outlet and alone time to look at my surroundings differently in search of somewhere beautiful and appreciating the light which seems to be so beautiful this week. You wouldn't think it was October. I might start playing some music when I do this, since every single one of my post titles is inspired by the music I love at the time.

Lyrics in songs tend to stand out to me, there is often a couple of lines in song which I will really connect with and it'll lead me to listening to the song and all of its lyrics again with a different mindset. Sometimes song lyrics can be like horoscopes - you take what you want from them, they're open to interpretation and you can hear a message that is completely different to what the writer intended, thats what I like about them. I love how it feels when you hear a song and you feel like it couldn't of described how you feel in a moment any better.

Redshift is one of my favourites from Darwin Deez, I love that with Deez, often he's trying to portray a real feeling but by using interesting metaphors to get it across and thats intelligent to me! Perhaps he intends them to be literal, but thats not how I interpret them.

I love Redshift because being young, we come across some many new people in our life and we experience things at such a fast pace, with our surroundings and peers changing often along with new stages of your life and for me, even though the song is about romantic relationships, I feel like it just so accurately represents how I feel when I think about all the people who've passed through my life and changed it in some way only to be no longer a part of it, yet still somehow a part of me. I know that its just a part of growing up and its natural but its something I don't think you come to terms with until now.


yes, I'm changing

I was raging, it was late
In the world my demons cultivate
I felt the strangest emotion but it wasn't hate, for once

Yes I'm changing, yes I'm gone
Yes I'm older, yes I'm moving on
And if you don't think it's a crime you can come along, with me

Life is moving, can't you see
There's no future left for you and me
I was holding and I was searching endlessly
But baby, now there's nothing left that I can do so
So don't be blue
There is another future waiting there for you

I saw it different, I must admit
I caught a glimpse, I'm going after it
They say people never change, but that's bullshit, they do

Yes I'm changing, can't stop it now
And even if I wanted I wouldn't know how
Another version of myself I think I found, at last

And I can't always hide away
Curse indulgence and despise the fame
There's a world out there and it's calling my name
And it's calling yours, girl it's calling yours too

It's calling yours too, it's calling yours too, it's calling yours too
It's calling out for you


queen of peace

This button down grey cord dress from ASOS is so versatile. I've worn it on a night out, during the day, with boots, with trainers, you name it! It's going to be perfect moving into autumn as its on trend with its suede cord feel and buttons, plus how nice is it when you can wear just one thing and be done with your outfit! This time I paired it with a fedora and Superga trainers for a laidback feel.

This location might look like a secluded spot perfect for taking photos away from onlookers who wonder what you're up to but no, I had an audience from every angle of the lake haha. I used to find it SO awkward, I wouldn't have even attempted to take any photos in the past but I've decided that people are just interested and don't know what your doing, so just own it and that way you'll get the pictures you want.


overcoming low self esteem in 2015

It doesn't take much of an investigation to notice there was a sizable gap between my current posts and the ones which came before August. I addressed the reasons why I took a break from writing a blog in my post after I returned here but I wanted to talk about the issue outside of blogging as I think its quite pertinent in todays culture.

Today's generation is incredibly visually focussed, that's why websites and apps such as Instagram, Pinterest and Tumblr are all so popular, because the user has an option to view eye capturing, beautiful images without committing to reading the words behind the image - if there even is any.

Social media also plays a huge role in todays society. Most of us have grown up with it and have never really been without it when you think about it. Myspace, Bebo, Facebook, Twitter, it's like social media developed as we grew. Now most people will not go longer than four hours without checking their social media accounts, with many checking them on first waking up and last thing in the day before sleeping.

But it's so important not to lose sight of what social media really is - an extension of the media. It's not a new notion that mass media is engineered to create consumers in industries such as beauty, fashion and fitness. The way this works is simple - the media creates material which makes people feel like they are lacking, preying on low self esteem and encouraging them to buy into a certain industry to improve their life or situation, its an endless cycle. There is a reason why people enjoy reading entertainment news and watching reality TV, it is because we see those people as just like us, like real people.

If you struggle to accept and love yourself, it can be difficult to look at images in the media and on social media without  it taking away chunks of your confidence and self esteem each time. Content like this can make you feel like everybody has it all but you and that can be hard to take.

You don't have to attain the industrys standards of beautiful, they are are not attainable, you will never get there, you shouldn't even strive to. We all know that magazines are photoshopped but I don't think people accept as easily that reality TV shows are engineered and set up, instagram images are also edited and incredibly selective, even blogs are. Nobody shares the ugly parts of their life, why would they want to and why would anybody want to read about it? But its important to remember that everybody has them.

If you struggle to accept and love yourself, it can be difficult to look at images in the media and on social media without  it taking away chunks of your confidence and self esteem each time.

Earlier this year I became increasingly worried about what people thought of me, I never felt good enough, I thought success would be creating popular online content. For some, thats what success is, it's what their business depends on. But for me it isn't.  This doubt in self confidence affected my self esteem and it bled into my daily life. I couldn't look at myself in the mirror without seeing so many flaws in my own self because everyday I was scrolling through instagram and tabloids and seeing pictures of women with perfectly toned bodies and beautifully made up faces and feeling disgusting. But there is nothing wrong with how I look, there is nothing wrong with my body, I am a healthy young woman. It is one of the saddest things to dislike yourself and feel like you don't measure up to EVERYBODY else. That you're the only one who looks like this and people don't like you as much as they like everybody else. I found myself bitter and jealous of other peoples success because I was so unhappy with myself. I wondered why anybody would like me when there were so many other amazing people out there to like more. I'd look at Tumblr and see images of people who looked cool, beautiful and confident and that would just make the feeling worse. Sometimes those who appear the most confident aren't, they're just overcompensating for how they really feel.

Those who are the happiest in this world are those who have not given in to the pressures of society, who accept themselves for who they are and, most importantly, they like themselves. It is not a taboo to love yourself as some would like you to think, you and your body are one for life, care for it but love it - there is nothing wrong with that.

It's not easy to break free of how this feels, and for me it started to lead to anxiety that I'd never experienced before and it began affecting how I lived my life. Now, I'm so much happier in my own skin, I look in the mirror and I don't hate what I see. Most surprisingly, I can look at others and appreciate their uniqueness, be happy for their success, it's like learning to love yourself helps you to love others too.

Below I've wrote out some advice that I had to tell myself all the time to help me learn to like myself again -

Be Yourself & Accept Yourself
Nobody will ever be you. You are unique. Don't worry all the time about how you aren't unique when you just are! Trying to hard to maintain a pretence of how you think people would want you to be is exhausting and not good for your confidence. People will love you for being you, and if they don't then they aren't worth it, you know the drill. It's one thing to be say 'be yourself' but it's also important to accept yourself! Somebody once told me that if you wrote down all the negative thoughts you thought about yourself, you'd be shocked, you would never say those insults to another, don't do it to yourself either. Treat yourself kindly and with respect.

Take a Step Back &  Look Around
Scrolling and scrolling through social media, what is popular at this time is all the same. That doesn't mean its the only right way, the only measure of success. I had to take a step back from social media so I was not surrounded by things to compare myself to. By not being so involved and absorbed by my phone I was able to look around me and see that everybody is different, in a great way. I could see that people were happy and 'beautiful' yet they did not look the same as eachother at all. It made me feel so much more comfortable in myself to know that when people look at me they do not see all the bad things I think about myself.

Comparison is the Thief of All Joy
How many times have you heard this quote? It's so true. Do not compare youself to anybody. You may compare youself to somebody and think nothing you have is good enough, but that person could feel exactly the same way, you don't know how they feel. Learn to appreciate the things that make you 'you'. In the same vein, appreciating others beauty without searching for their flaws can help you see your own beauty. Sometimes when you're confidence is low, judging others and pointing out their flaws can help you feel better, but its not nice and the feeling is fleeting and does not last, it only serves to make you feel worse. When you can accept others success without feeling intimidated and jealous you're less likely to see flaws in yourself.

Take Steps to Make Yourself Happy
If you really want to make improvements to your life that will make you happy thats okay. If you're not treating people around you well or you're not treating yourself well its time to make some small changes to fix this. So if you are eating lots of junk and its making you tired and unhappy then sure change this, but don't let that define your success, you can always keep trying.

Define Success
This is important.  In most cases success is NOT numbers of instagram likes or retweets, they will not make you truly happy, do  not search for validation from social media. Success means different things to different people, maybe your idea of success is seeing your family more, or getting outdoors more. Define small goals and be happy when you acheive them, maybe its drinking more water, maybe its switching off your phone for an hour.

But Remember You're Allowed to Fail
Of course you are! You can't be successful everyday, nobody is, everybody has bad days. Do not put so much pressure on yourself for fear of failing. Life is about making mistakes and moving on from them. Don't let fear of failure let you feel like you're a failure. You have your whole life to keep trying, but don't expect to be perfect, nobody is.

Life is about making mistakes and moving on from them. Don't let fear of failure let you feel like you're a failure. You have your whole life to keep trying, but don't expect to be perfect, nobody is.

Don't Let the Opinion of Others Affect You
and don't try to please them. Everybody likes different things, thats the beauty of the world. When you let what people think of you become your main driver for the things you do, you won't be able to accept yourself or be happy. People have things to say about what everybody does, probably because they have their own confidence problems. You aren't being true to yourself if you try to make them all happy and like you, its not sustainable and it invalidates every other point I've made already!

Finally, I want to leave this here. It's always a good listen when you're feeling low and unsure of yourself, it helps you to learn to appreciate your surroundings and the beauty of life itself.

Jayde / 22 / North West England


All items marked with an asterix (*) have been gifted or sent to me for review purposes.




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