24 Sep 2017

Hurts to liv - liv

Hurts to liv - liv
You know, when you are guilty of something you often get that feeling that makes you try to stay away from everything related to your guilt and makes things even worse. It's not like it was/is my duty to post on this blog, but what happened to it, or better, what didn't happen to it (i.e. me not posting anymore) makes me feel bad, a little bit because of what it represented for me, a little bit for the (few) people that I hope I reached out to and entertained with my stories and especially "my" songs. Unfortunately all good things come to an end, and so it is for blogs. I tried to carry 'A song or two per day' on and on as much as I could, but at one point I lost the necessary motivation to carve 10-20 minutes (almost) every day to devote to it. Be it for (finally, yay!) being involved in a serious relationship, be it because the new school is eating out most of my "free time", be it... I don't know what other reasons, but it just happened that I slowly stopped posting. One thing I can reassure you about is that I haven't lost my passion for music, even if I haven't found a way to keep sharing it here! Rather, this 2017 has been a great year for new music, I am so excited about many of the new albums and songs that have been released! I have been (with my special one) at Lollapalooza Paris, seen a bunch of very nice gigs! Life goes on, I have been having a rough month: school gets more and more stressing, and however much I like doing a PhD and the road it is projecting me to, I often stop to wonder whether it's really worth the insane amount of stress and huge effort I am putting into it. Special one went to study abroad for a couple years, which makes things incredibly harder, so I'm having a bit of a tough time, hoping for things to be better in the future. Let's say I am in investment mode...! Music becomes even more important at these times, as it really is the one thing that brings me forward sometimes. So here I am, back on the blog. I just wanted to let you know I'm alive and well, notwithstanding the hardships of life, and that... well, you never know! I might pop up here every now and then and share something, if I find it in myself to write something else that is not academic thoughts..! I'll leave you with a brand new songs released by liv, the "super-group" founded last year by Lykke Li and a bunch of other Swedish famous singers and musicians. The song seems to come at a perfect time for me, so I hope it can help those of you who are also having it a bit rough lately! Wish you the best!!

1 May 2017

Oh woman oh man - London Grammar

Oh woman oh man - London Grammar
I have been silent for a long time, but don't worry, the blog is not dead, not yet at least! My life is apparently getting busier and busier, and while this is most probably a good thing, as it means that I have a lot of things going on and good ways to spend my time, I can't help feeling a little disappointed that I barely ever find the time and energies to post here, especially given the amount of great music that is being released this year!! But here I am, after a very very busy period, I am trying to get a breath for a few days before diving again into work. I need to share with you the latest song shared by London Grammar off their upcoming album 'Truth is a beautiful thing', out in a few weeks, as it's probably my favourite among the four they released so far! I hope you enjoy it too and have a great week!!

10 Apr 2017

You got the love (live remix) - The XX feat. Florence Welch

You got the love (remix live) - The XX feat. Florence Welch
The first encounter I've had with The XX was in 2010 or 2011 when I approached their remix of one of my favourite songs ever, i.e. 'You got the love' by Florence + the Machine, and I was disgusted by that. That kept me far from them for a couple more years, when in 2013 I finally got close to them thanks to some friends' suggestions, and of course I could only regret letting so much time pass by without their music! Still, that 'You got the love' never met my taste, and I couldn't but be amazed about how two of my favourite bands could get together and create something that I found so hateful. The same feeling transferred through to my viewing of their live remix during the recent Night + Day event The XX organised in Brixton. Still, for how much the song didn't please me, their collaboration on the stage was magic, especially how Florence could remix her voice live even better than a DJ could do in a studio...! And that drew me to listen to the song again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And, well... I guess you understood by now what happened afterwards!

"You know it's real! I know, I know, You know it's real! Eh eh eh eh eh eh"

6 Apr 2017

Dark road - Annie Lennox

Dark road - Annie Lennox
Lately  been rediscovering some albums that have been in my iTunes for a long long time, and of which I had only devoted attention to one or a few songs. Annie's 'Songs of mass destruction' is one of those, and 'Dark road' has been indeed a favourite of mine since I was listening to it on the radio during my last high school years (10 years ago, jeez!!). It just felt right to share this now, even if at this time of my life I feel like finally I have been able to lead somebody through the dark road that leads to my house! Let's just say I worked hard to keep the door open all this time, and finally I've been repaid!

"It's a dark road
And a dark way that leads to my house
And the word says
You're never going to find me there
Oh no
I've got an open door
It didn't get there by itself
It didn't get there by itself"

2 Apr 2017

#sundayrevival Billie Jean - Micheal Jackson

Billie Jean - Michael Jackson
Not having listened to or been exposed to Michael Jackson lately, I have absolutely no clue why I woke up today with my head going like "Billie Jean is not my lover, she's just a girl who claims I am the one..."! But I did. Again, I should stop trying to find a reason behind what's going on in my head musically, but it's so peculiar that it makes me curious all the time! Is it s sign telling me I should go do a dance night out while I am still "young enough"? Even with the sore throat and usual malaise that came back to me in these busy, busy days? I wonder...! Well, in case you guys can go out dance to Billie Jean in my stead for the time being, I will join you asap!!

26 Mar 2017

Travelling woman - Bat for lashes

Travelling woman - Bat for lashes
Hola my dear blog readers (if there's anybody of you left)!! I've been absent the longest time, and I am sorry about that, but my control over life is once again (and more and more) slipping through my fingers as more and more duties pile up on each other... My parents came to visit me in Hong Kong last week, their first time in East Asia, and it's been a pleasure to have them here, show them around and spend some time together, even if of course it's been challenging to try and keep up with school rhythm and everything too...! I have a couple big papers due by the end of the month and I have barely started working on them, as (school-related) housekeeping duties keep me busy week in and week out, and by devoting some time to the people who matter to me here in HK (a special one in particular) and to friends and family via Internet, eating, sleeping (poorly) and few more basic human needs, I keep on running out of time (and most of all of productivity). I keep needing a holiday, but I have to clench my teeth and keep it up until May at least!! Good thing is that this 2017 has been giving me a shitload of music satisfaction already, and I'm so sad I can't manage to share it all with you, but I'll give you as many little pills as I can! And apparently I gotta start from way back then, as I recently started listening to 'Bat for lashes' and I'm quite liking her! I think this song works perfectly for the working, semi-lazy, grey-sky Sunday I've just been spending! I hope it works well for the start of your new week too!! Hope to be back up here in a shorter time than last!

7 Mar 2017

Feed my fire - Amy MacDonald

Feed my fire - Amy MacDonald
4 albums behind her, Amy's musical strength (and maybe also her weakness) is for sure coherence: her sound hasn't changed much in 10 years of career, and, I'll never get tired of repeating it, with the current state of the pop music industry, finding somebody who is true to her sound and didn't sell her music to "cheap beats" is always appreciable. Of course people might criticise her, as her songs sound similar to each other, and I don't think that's deniable, but it doesn't prevent me from appreciating all her work, including the newly released 'Under stars', out of which this is one of my first favourites!

5 Mar 2017

#sundayrevival Rich kids blues - Lykke Li

Rich kids blues - Lykke Li
I've been listening to Lykke Li a few times these past days, today I've listened to a new song released by one of her backing singers (Kiki), and I just found out that she had released another song under "liv" band a few months ago! It seemed appropriate to end this hectic and very tough week with her, especially with rich kids blues which kind of makes a lot of sense for me now. The next couple of weeks will probably be even worse, and I'm anxious already about all the things I'll have to do, but well, again... better to be too busy than too bored! Have a great new week!

1 Mar 2017

Human behaviour - Björk

Human behaviour - Bjork
I don't think my life could be summed up in any way better than with this song right now! Having a rollercoaster week, and the more stress kicks in, the more extreme mood changes are. Still, so frustrating and irresistible to approach the definitely definitely definitely no logic!

"If you ever get close to a human
And human behaviour
Be ready to get confused
There's definitely, definitely, definitely no logic
To human behaviour
But yet so, yet so irresistible
And there's no map
They're terribly moody
And human behaviour
Then all of a sudden turn happy
But, oh, to get involved in the exchange
Of human emotions is ever so, ever so satisfying"

26 Feb 2017

#sundayrevival Pretty good year - Tori Amos

Pretty good year - Tori Amos
I don't know why I found myself with this song in my head this afternoon, but I just did. I suppose I triggered Tori myself by suggesting her music to a friend recently, but I suppose that's not all of it...! Anyway I guess that, notwithstanding my generally bad mood of the last few days/weeks (I need a holiday), a Sunday with Tori can never be a totally bad Sunday. Maybe it's a bliss of another kind...!

24 Feb 2017

Big picture - London Grammar

Big picture - London Grammar
Almost another week has gone by without me posting, and this time of my life is a really really busy one...! I will just spare a few minutes to share with you another song that London Grammar released (a while ago now) in anticipation of their forthcoming sophomore album. I must say I like 'Big picture' better than the previous "Rooting for you", and the video is also very beautiful! I hope you enjoy it and I also wish all of us a pleasant weekend!

19 Feb 2017

#sundayrevival City with no children - Arcade Fire

City with no children - Arcade Fire
Hello guys, I hope your week had been fine. Mine, as anticipated, has been pretty hectic among new workshops that required a shitload of work in and especially out of class, Valentine's dinners, the usual uni life, hunting for Gen.2 Pokémon in Pokémon Go, dumplings dinner with friends, cleaning and more...! It's been a super full week, but somehow I manage to (more or less) reconcile all my activities and efforts requests! Now I am expecting a Sunday afternoon in front of the computer, reading and writing and coding (what a change...!), but first of all I wanted to share this with you, as I'm feeling in a really Arcade Firey mood today! Hope you enjoy and have a great Sunday!

12 Feb 2017

#sundayrevival Fantasy - The XX

Fantasy - The XX
Being obsessed with The XX today, I can't seem to stop listening to their new album's 2 bonus tracks ('Seasons run' & 'Naive') and to their absolute best 'Crystalised'. Given that I can't keep re-posting the same songs over and over again, I'll give you another gem off their debut album as for today's sundayrevival! A hellish rest of the month is about to being for me after a nice home-made sushi night with friends, so I don't know how often I'll have the time and energies to post here. I wish you the best second half of February before disappearing under the amount of work that is waiting for me!!!

9 Feb 2017

4 degrees - Anohni

4 degrees - Anohni
Today has been a pretty cold day in Hong Kong according to the local weather forecast, but for how chilly and annoying a humid temperature of 12°C can be, I dare say that local people here don't know what real winter means. I can understand now why most of them hate the heat and the sunlight... Anyway, even if the day has actually been chilly, we didn't get down to have only 4 degrees (even if what Anohni refers to in her song is a change in world climate due to global warming). For how much I hate cold, global warming is a problem we should all pay attention to, so let's try to make an effort and be a little more respectful towards our planet and the future generations.

7 Feb 2017

Seasons run - The XX

After listening to the first few songs of the new XX album, I felt disappointed and a bit frustrated by the fact that they had sold themselves to the cheap, mainstream electronic beats, guided by Jamie and his experimentation. I missed the intimate atmospheres created by their former songs, and luckily I found them again starting from the middle of the album ('Performance' saved my opinion of it during the first listen, it dragged me out of the deep waters I had fallen into). Now I have made my peace with the whole of it and I am starting to appreciate it as a whole, but I still love more the tracks that carry a stronger "The XX" signature. This bonus track is one of them and is quickly becoming a new favourite of mine!! (PS: Click on the image caption for a link to the song)

5 Feb 2017

Chasing shadows - Santigold

Chasing shadows - Santigold
My semester is finally starting in full force and I already hate it. Or so they say. I love sushi. But how is that related? People keep messing with my private thoughts, but I can't say I complain. I feel (more) bipolar (than usual), but this time it's justified methinks, as the second person is outside of my head and, well... contributed in making my life so full that I started this post on Saturday night and I am ending it one day after, following a tiring but satisfying hiking day! Cheers to a full life!

2 Feb 2017

The modern things - Björk

The modern things - Björk
In the last few days I've been listening to the whole Björk discography because, again, I had her in my head for no particular reason. I must say that listening to all her songs randomly made me appreciate a bit more also the music she released after the turn of century, which has always been very hard on me. Then I went on to take a nap this afternoon - after getting up very early (for my standards) this morning - and waking up from it, I had in my head the looped lyric she sings at the end of "The modern things", which is in Icelandic; after searching the Internet I think she's singing something like "Engin sér við mér", which means "Nobody gets the best of me", but I am not 100% sure I got it right, as her pronunciation seems slightly different... It's amazing how things that are (supposed to be) unintelligible to our brain given our knowledge pool, still have such a big influence on us, isn't it?!

1 Feb 2017

2 hearts - Kylie Minogue

2 hearts - Kylie Minogue
Life is weird, and that is an established fact (I suppose). I get periodic reminders of this, so I can't explain why I woke up with this song in my head this morning. Absolutely no idea, but I did! I haven't been listening to this song in forever, so it was a pleasing experience to go back 10 years (and for how weird it is [again], it really feels like this song is in my past past) and re-discover the Kylie I got the closest to, at the end of the 00s. It helped me start a relatively good day, so I can't complain too much! I hope it helps you get a decent night too!

29 Jan 2017

#sundayrevival A thousand miles - Vanessa Carlton

A thousand miles - Vanessa Carlton
A couple weeks ago I went to karaoke with some friends, a pretty fun night, and one of the songs we sang all together was of course a teenage classic of ours, 'A thousand miles'. The song has been coming up often ever since, with some of us singing it off the top of our heads from time to time; this happened today too during our hike to the Lion Rock peak, a steep walk up a tall hill which rewarded us with a mystical view of nothingness (we were surrounded by the white of clouds), and of course we also got soaked. It's been a nice and enjoyable experience anyway! The celebrations for the Chinese New Year are going on, but they are past the climax now, so I'm getting ready to start next semester!

28 Jan 2017

Conductor - Florence + the Machine

Conductor - Florence + the Machine
After an almost sleepless night yesterday, last night I finally made it up with about 12 hours of sleep and I woke up in this new year of the rooster (or cock, as one wishes..!) and checking Facebook, I saw a post by a fanclub that left me with Third eye's lyrics in mind. It's been a while since I gave a proper listen to Florence, so I really am not minding this start of day big, blue and beautiful! Hoping she will give me the right energy to start this lunar new year in the best way possible, even if for now the feeling I get is the one of being out of place and far from home when everybody else is celebrating... gotta put myself to study before melancholia gets the best of me!!

25 Jan 2017

Rooting for you (live) - London Grammar

Rooting for you - London Grammar
2017 started with a musical boom, which took me almost a month to post, but finally here I am! London Grammar are about to release a new album in the coming weeks, and they previewed this song recorded live, which I also had the pleasure to listen to at Clockeflap a couple months ago. I still need to get into it completely, but I like the style, which is very London Grammar still, even more minimal if possible, so I'm very curious to listen to the rest of the new materials that are coming!!!
Now I'm getting ready for the next new year, which is gonna be in just a couple of days: Hong Kong and the whole of South East Asia are getting ready for the lunar new year, and so am I!

24 Jan 2017

Rendezvous girl - Santigold

Rendezvous girl - Santigold
Your Hong Kong reporter doesn't have any big news for you, so today I will just be sharing a song that has been among my top favourites of what I've been listening to in this beginning of 2017! I hope you have a good and productive day!

22 Jan 2017

This fine social scene - Zero 7

This fine social scene - Zero 7
Hello my dears, I am back from a 2-day trip to Guangzhou/Canton with friends, first time to Mainland China, super tiring but worth it! After a Sunday of morning rest, afternoon work and dinner out, I am ready to start a new week (am I?)! The year of cock, so let's also get ready for this Chinese New Year!! I'll leave you with a perfect tune for a chill end of the week, with vocals by Sia. Hope you enjoy!

19 Jan 2017

Dream on - Amy MacDonald

Dream on - Amy MacDonald
After a disappointing 2016, 2017 kicked off with a good start already. One of the reasons is Amy, who is coming out with a new album this year. Maybe over the years she failed to remain relevant to the international/European pop/rock scene, especially by failing to keep up with her huge debut 'This is the life', but one thing I really appreciate about her is that she hasn't changed her music recipe much over her first 10 years of career, remaining loyal to her folk-rock classic ballad style. One could say that her songs all sound alike, and I could buy that argument. I wouldn't go as far as saying this is a bad thing though, especially at a time like this when pop has become very much "electronified" and synthesised, with a lot of singers (and songs) sounding exactly like each other because of auto-tuning and heavy production. I am always happy when I realise that artists I like keep on doing what made me like them. Go on like this Amy!

18 Jan 2017

An cat dubh - U2

An cat dubh - U2
Last weekend the HMV branches of Hong Kong offered a bunch of sales on different categories of items, so I went to take a look (and of course bought [useless] things, among which one CD). U2's sophomore effort has been on my to-buy list for a while now and finally is no more. Probably related to that purchase, yesterday I woke up with their debut album on my mind, so I went on and listened to both of them during the day. I must confess that 'Boy' is among my favourite albums of them, most likely in the top 3, if not in the top 1! I always link the beautiful atmosphere of these songs to walking throughout lower Manhattan, as it was probably my soundtrack when I strolled there in 2011 during my second visit to New York. This song in particular always gives me that magical feeling in my guts that you only get when walking around Washington square park and Greenwich village. So I dedicate this post and what is probably my favourite U2 song to the magic of New York!

16 Jan 2017

Your best American girl - Mitski

Your best American girl - Mitski
I got to know Mitski about one year ago and, even if it took me a while to like her, I appreciated her 2014 album 'Bury me at makeout creek', in particular a few songs out of it. Her peculiar style doesn't allow (me) for an easy like-at-first-listen (or second, or third), but if you keep your head down and give her a few chances, you will be rewarded! I recently approached her latest work 'Puberty 2' with, of course, a lot of hurdle. What triggered it for me is, once again, a sent-from-heaven KEXP live. Goodness bless KEXP. Go listen to it now and you won't regret it. Ever.

15 Jan 2017

#sundayrevival Moonlight shadow - Mike Oldfield (feat. Maggie Reilly)

Moonlight shadow - Mike Oldfield
feat. Maggie Reilly
I'm gonna kick off sundayrevival 2017 with an 80s favourite of many of you out there, a song that I suppose most of you will know and many of you would have no problem in singing at a karaoke night, rather...! Even if it's almost 10 years older than I am, I know it quite well too and have known it for quite a long time, even if I only re-discovered it very recently. It's the oldest addition to my first 2017 playlist, so I thought you might wanna go back in time a little too! Enjoy!

12 Jan 2017

Banshee - Santigold

Banshee - Santigold
It took me a while to like the first Santigold album I listened to, that was 'Master of my make-believe', which I approached last year. But after giving it time, it really stuck with me and has been one of the nicest discoveries of a dry 2016. I then moved on to her most recent work '99ç' lately and it's been even slightly tougher to approach, up to the point that I almost got disappointed. Almost. Because I did start falling for it, and I have a very positive feeling about our future relationship! It didn't start with this song, but it's the one that has been sticking with me the most in the past few days, so here it is! COME ON!

9 Jan 2017

Street dancer - Hiromi Iwasaki

Street dancer - Hiromi Iwasaki
Recently YouTube started recommending Japanese music for me, so today I spent my paper-reading time with a peculiar soundtrack of traditional, experimental rock and jazzy Japanese music. The first song that they recommended to me, though, is this one I'm posting tonight, the one that bought me into going on and listening to their advice! I then found out that this jazzy/folk weird genre that generated in Japan well before I was born, is known as Kayōkyoku. You never cease of learning new, interesting things! I'm really curious to see where this 2017 will take me from here!

7 Jan 2017

Go dreaming - Dido

Go dreaming - Dido
I didn't start this 2017 much better than I left off 2016 on the blog, so I will try to make it up at least today! The new year kicked off being social and lazy for me, both things not being beneficial either to my studies or to any other commitments I might have taken, including the blog... so today, mostly out of guilt, I tried to put my down and read some papers, trying to turn things around. It's been going quite ok, also thanks to the fact that my nth sore throat + fever is getting better and so, being forced at home with a relatively clear mind, I took advantage of the good chance I had to work. And to write on the blog too, of course! It's hard to feel these days as winter days, with temperatures outside constantly over 20°C, but I found myself in a winter mood this afternoon and put on some Dido, so I'm going to share with you one of my favourites out of her latest studio album!
Some interesting new music has already been released in these few days of 2017 so stay tuned and be patient, I'll get to share it with you soon!!

2 Jan 2017

#yearinmusic A song or two per day - Best song and album of 2016

2016 has been a pretty good year for me under many points of view, but A song or two per day has not been one of them, and the two things are probably related: I have been having such a good time that I found it hard to find the time and (mental) energies to sit down and write blog entries constantly, which ended up in me posting very rarely. The music point of view is another one in which 2016 lacked with respect to its predecessors, which is maybe another reason why I didn't post as much. These two reasons are also the ones why I procrastinated the posting of my 2016 music summary, as I am pretty much at a loss in finding a best song and best album released this year...

Best song 2016: Line of fire - Junip
Best song: Line of fire - Junip

Given that 2016 has mostly been the outcome of life decisions made in the past years, with a lot of change that took place thanks to triggering moments that had happened in the years before, I am actually quite ok with choosing a song that was actually released 3 years before as my 2016 Best song pick. Junip and José Gonzalez have been hugely meaningful for me in the last couple of years, probably the most influential new music discovery I made lately and 'Line of fire' in particular has been a soundtrack of many big moments of 2016, mostly the ones related to me moving to Hong Kong. "What would you say if you had to leave today? Leave everything behind even though for once, you're shining."

Best album 2016: Shura - Nothing's real
Best album: Shura - Nothing's real

2016 has been quite a disappointment for me mostly because some of my favourite artists released albums that were not nearly up to my expectations or to the level of what they have been releasing before. The biggest one of these disappointments has been PJ Harvey's 'The hope six demolition project': PJ made us wait 5 years for new music, and all the expectations built in this time crushed against an album I personally find weak and pretty much pointless, the only low of her career together with 'White chalk'. On a similar note I can place the new releases by OneRepublic, KT Tunstall and, to a lesser extent, Sia. Their albums have not been all bad and feature some quite awesome songs, but overall lack a consistency that would allow me to classify them as great albums. I have been tempted to pick Sia's 'This is acting' as my favourite album released in 2016, as notwithstanding its not being nearly as good as '1000 forms of fear', it's a quite good album, but in the end I decided to go for something that I discovered towards the end of the year, here in Hong Kong: I found out about Shura thanks to Clockenflap, the music festival I attended in Hong Kong this past November, and I fell in love with her debut album quite quickly. It will not go on to enter my music olympus, but it's a good representation of my life in this past year: new, enjoyable and linked to Hong Kong!

After a hectic, full and great 2016, which has been mostly about consolidation under the music point of view, I hope 2017 will take me back to previously unseen heights with some new, great music! And I also hope I'll be able to post a bit more consistently on the blog (even if I have a hard time believing myself)...!

Happy 2017!