• NKOTB - Summertime

    20. Jul. 2008, 10:29

    So there it was - New Kids on the Block's much anticipated comeback single, Summertime.

    To be honest, I was shocked. I don't know what I can expect from a former boyband, but I suppose it wasn't too much to hope for a sophisticated and mature comeback. I mean, we're all grown ups now. They should've had grown out of this kind of music a long time ago! I know I did, and I'm much younger than all the members.

    Who are they trying to market their music to? Their old fans, which are all my age, would not listen to this kind of light R&B pop anymore. The teens of today, who were not even born yet during their height of fame, would not likely to scream fanatically at some 30-something men. 30-something men who are frolicking on the beach with young girls. And did choreographed dancing on their music video, which is soooo last decade. Who are they marketing themselves to?!

    As comparison, I hated Take That when they were famous in mid-90s. They were far more ridiculous than New Kids on the Block, dancing around half naked in fish-net tops and supposed-to-be-sexy stares. But Robbie Williams managed to establish himself as a solid artist today, with materials that grow accordingly as he matures. Their comeback single Shine, although still playing in the pop field to maintain the interest of their target audience, was a sophisticated song nevertheless. They knew their fans had grown up.

    Well. I guess the only good thing I can say is that it's good to see them back on the circuit, making me forget for a while that I'm not a teenager anymore. And it probably brings them back to their youth as well, they seem to enjoy it. Just please mature up before you all hit your 40s.
  • NKOTB reforming?

    26. Jan. 2008, 20:26


    Imagine having the most 'uncool' boyfriend in your preteen years. It was fun, but you cringe when you think about him now. You think that he belongs to the past and you can safely 'forget' that it ever happened. Sure, you'd sometimes think back affectionately about those moments of youth folly, but you know that you wouldn't mention anything about him to your current more mature, more sensible social circle.

    And, while you're with this mature social circle, there he is bumping into you, and you can't help but say hi amongst the outburst of nostalgia. And probably exchange contact numbers. And definitely explain to your entourage about your past with him.

    Yesiree, New Kids on the Block might be reforming!
  • Lost Touch

    12. Jan. 2008, 18:12

    I've lost touch with music for a good few weeks. That sounds so weird, and I didn't even realise it until about 2 minutes ago, when I decided to write this journal.

    Oh, I still listen to music, and I still felt that every minute that went by without music is a minute wasted. The silence bothered me, still. Yet - something was amiss. I wasn't into what I was listening to, my emotions weren't there. I spaced out. The music became elevator music that superficially blew through my ears.

    It's when Don't Look Back Into The Sun came on through my headphones, I realised that my emotions had been all frozen. I realised that it's part of the reason why my life felt so plain lately - or maybe vice versa - because I've lost touch with music.

    The song made me feel again, somehow. It lifted up my emotions in the way that only music can. I'm so glad and relieved to be connected again! Life is so much better when it's soundtracked by music.
  • Take me to Kortedala!

    13. Okt. 2007, 4:07

    Where is Kortedala? Gothenburg, Sweden, you say? Anywhere it is, if it's anything like Jens Lekman's new album Night Falls Over Kortedala, I want to go there. RIGHT NOW.

    The album is heavily nostalgic, with strings and samples all through it. Remember the when it was all sweet and simple? Errr, well, perhaps if you're older than me. Admittedly I wasn't born yet at the time music was this sweet, and my childhood memories involve more drum machines and synthesizers than lush string arrangements. But it still takes me back to simpler days somehow.

    Overall it's an album that gives you a light and happy feeling. Definitely worth singing Hallelujah to. I dare you to listen to Friday Night at the Drive-In Bingo and not move along to it. Perhaps Sipping On The Sweet Nectar lyrics said it best - I feel like indulging myself in the sweet nectar of past memories when I play this album. I could almost picture myself running in a field somewhere under the bright summer sun.

    Another thing about the album is the story-telling lyrics, told through luscious sounds by Jens' own deadpan voice. It's like a fancy audiobook of some sort. The lyrics are easy to listen to, and quite straightforward. He tells us about his hairdresser, for example, in Shirin. Or, in A Postcard to Nina he shares his story about pretending to be Nina's boyfriend in front of her family so that they would not know she's actually a lesbian. They way he tells his stories are really personal, that you'd wonder if they are based on true story. Did he or did he not? You'd wonder in which salon does Shirin work, or how Nina's Dad would react if he hears the song.

    In the end, you'd at least be curious to know where Kortedala is, while continuing to sip on the sweet nectar of Jens' music.
  • Open Mind Index

    8. Okt. 2007, 14:21

    You can check yours here

  • Under the Moonlight

    25. Aug. 2007, 2:41

    ...with the one you love.

    Yeah, it's nothing new, perhaps even cheesy for some. But if you're in love, it's a brand new sensation everytime, and these kinds of words never get old. Sometimes, love does put on a pair of lavender shades before our eyes. Other times, I even think love is a kind of mental illness. It has its own set of reality, or perhaps its own world, which might seem insane in the eyes of people who don't believe in it. This perhaps would be most evident in Somebody, do Google up the lyrics to see what I mean.

    In a way, this is what I feel about Travis. I just got The Boy With No Name and really, it's just the same old Travis. But I don't mind at all. I love it!
  • Summer Holidays

    21. Jun. 2007, 23:47

    I don't like summer holidays for an array of reasons. First of all, I miss my students. I guess I've put so much attention on them to compensate for the emptiness of my life. Second, it takes time to get used to practically have all those time for myself - and, when I'm comfortably used to the luxury, suddenly holiday time is over.

    Few first days of holidays...
    Me: "Oh, no. What day is this? Oh wait... it's the holidays. But isn't there anything I should finish?" [sits down]. "But... it's only noon... what am I going to do today then?"

    And then, I'd start feeling the pressure to make the best of the time I've got. I'd make plans. Make arrangements. Buy tickets. Check for event calendars. Arrange some time to play those computer games I bought months ago but never got around to play. Check on things I didn't get to do during regular workdays.

    So far so good, but I still hope that I could put on a pair of New Shoes and suddenly everything is right.

    Oh, and of course, each summer holiday makes me older. Speaking of Paolo Nutini - where have those days gone, when all my musician heroes were older than me? I can still remember that time Ash were hailed as the young trio from Belfast, and they're older than me. Now, my idol is almost a decade younger than me. Bah.

    I should probably make a list of my summer songs of 2007, but I'm not feeling too summery at the moment. Perhaps later after I get over this grumpy granny mood!
  • Recommended Artists Cloud Generator

    16. Mai. 2007, 18:42

    Take the 50 top artists in your musical profile, and create a cloud of the similar artists that are not in your top 50. The result is a collection of highly recommended artists for your personal profile. You can generate your own cloud (in BBCode) at http://anthony.liekens.net/pub/scripts/last.fm/recommend.php

    My recommendations are
    Arctic Monkeys Beck Bloc Party Bob Dylan Bright Eyes Coldplay David Bowie Death Cab for Cutie Eels Foo Fighters Franz Ferdinand Gorillaz Green Day Interpol Jack Johnson Jeff Buckley Jet Led Zeppelin Modest Mouse Nirvana Oasis Pink Floyd Pixies Queen R.E.M. Red Hot Chili Peppers Sigur Rós Simon & Garfunkel Spoon Stereophonics The Arcade Fire The Beach Boys The Cure The Flaming Lips The Killers The Kinks The Postal Service The Rolling Stones The Shins The Smashing Pumpkins The Smiths The Strokes The Velvet Underground The Verve The White Stripes Travis U2 Weezer Wilco Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  • Avec Nouvelle Vague

    12. Mai. 2007, 9:55


    By day, I was dancing around with a bunch of kindergarteners to the tune of nursery rhymes. A few hours later after the sun went down, I was standing with a bottle of vodka in my hand and shouting along to Too Drunk to Fuck. It's just bizarre when the thought struck me.

    Due to traffic jam, I was almost late arriving at the venue. My friends were already waiting, so we went straight in. I was initially shocked at realising how out of place my outfit was: a high collared beige jacket, a pair of Levi's and a pair of Converse. Yes, I know, the dress code was bikini and shorts, but there's no way I would wear such unprotective clothes amidst the blowing night wind. But I truly looked like an alien in the sea of flowing summer dresses, tank-tops and mini skirts. I finally took off the jacket when the body heat of the crowd started to become unbearable, but I still felt out of place.

    The gig started out late, luckily we were armed with a complimentary bottle of a very tasty vodka-juice. The atmosphere was pleasant: the stage was set up across the pool from where the audience were, wind was blowing softly, music was blaring loudly, everyone seemed happy [if not slightly tipsy] and full of enthusiastic anticipation. I thought I saw a friend, but once she disappeared in the crowd it was impossible to find her again. I also tried to look for fellow last.fm-ers but it was virtually impossible! I had been expecting a low-key intimate gig, but there I was, in the middle of a giant clubbing scene, packed with more trendy people than I'd ever seen in my life. I kind of regretted not dressing up better, since I don't have much chance to dress up and this was a perfect one. But, ah well.

    The band entered the stage in style. There's something very captivating about the girls of Nouvelle Vague: they're pretty and sexy. Both wore flowing mini dresses, black stockings, and shiny flats, which were just perfect for their figures and dance moves. Opening with Killing Moon, the band were met with a very warm welcome.

    The girls were very active onstage; singing, synchronised-dancing, playing various handheld instruments, and egging the audience to sing along. When we're not loud enough, one of them shouted, "Come on, you can say 'fuck' but you can't say 'aa-ah'?" Their onstage exuberance reminded me of Jane Birkin at times, whose performance I had the honour of watching. They seem to be really into the music.

    The crowd kept moving and changing, I managed to eventually get a good view of the stage after being stuck behind a large Afro-haired bloke for some [annoying] time. I knew the songs, the performance were very entertaining, and an air of disappointment swept the crowd as they announced that Love Will Tear Us Apart would be their last song ["Maybe," said them teasingly]. They - of course - came back after that, continuing with the extended version of the aforementioned song, and launched into In a Manner of Speaking afterwards.

    They closed with Just Can't Get Enough. There certainly wouldn't be any more songs because... well, by this time, some people from the audience already jumped into the pool, and right after the song was finished, the men of the band jumped along with them! It was just a right memorable ending for an entertaining performance. There was an after party, but my friends wanted to head straight home. Well, admittedly I'm not a devoted fan of Nouvelle Vague, but they managed to provide me with a fun, chilled out, and memorable evening. Merci beaucoup!
  • You Are My Sunshine

    5. Mai. 2007, 20:10

    For years, all I knew of the song was this part:

    You are my sunshine
    My only sunshine
    You make me happy, when skies are grey
    You'll never know dear, how much I love you
    Please don't take my sunshine away

    I didn't know that the rest of the song was actually about LOSING that sunshine. So I like to sing that part above to a sweet little boy that brightens my days, and that song reminds me of him... although it's all meant in happy emotions!