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Album Review: Brandon Flowers - The Desired Effect
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Album Review: Sheppard - Bombs Away
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Album Review: Blur - The Magic Whip
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Our Top 5 alt-J Covers

By Aina May 26, 2015

alt-J gave an incredible show a week ago, least that’s what I heard. What a bummer that we didn’t get a chance to catch them live, but no biggie, a little mini-show at Laneway Festival back in 2012 showed a jist on how well they can play live!

You may still have alt-J songs ringing in your ears, and you’re definitely not over the gig, but hey, since you’re at it, why not catch the top 5 alt-J covers we’ve chosen. I promise they’re worth your time.

 

Left Hand Free // James Bay 

James Bay is exceptionally amazing in his alt-J cover! With his rock-n-roll voice (and not to mention, vibe) he definitely nailed this cover to the rock genre.

 

Breezeblocks // Cordelia Gartside

For sure, Cordelia is a very talented young woman. She sings with so much soul, and with Breezeblocks being a song full of emotions, she definitely delivers, in an eerie sort of way.

 

Fitzpleasure // Voctronica

It’s not everyday you pass by an a cappella cover, especially a good one. Each individual in Voctronica have very important roles to make the song as lovely as it is. Being the only a cappella cover in this list shows that it’s very unique too, so hit play, okay?

 

Matilda // Aubrey Fowler

For a dreamy cover of Matilda, just listen to Aubrey’s. Her vocal chords are in control for the song, having different tones in different parts. It’s pretty relaxing as well, so maybe you can add it into your ‘chill’ playlist.

 

Matilda // Pauline Bubz

Another Matilda cover, but it’s so very different from the other. Pauline’s cover gives out a stronger vocal; so much so that you can hear her thick French accent. However, despite that, with her stronger chords, she gave extra emotions into the song. Wow.

 

Hope you like our top 5 alt-J covers! If you have any covers to share, just hit us up! Enjoy the music, guys!

Photo credit: Parqmag

Life is fast-paced no matter what you do - be it the mountain of homework you have, or the deadlines that you have to meet. Even if so, just a reminder that you are not a working machine, and no rest means you are more prone to viruses and illnesses.

So do yourself (and your body) a favour and take a break. If a background music is what you need to help you with that, let’s just say we’re here to help, and good news, we have got it covered!

Just pick the playlist that clicks to you the most!

Release Your Stress by MarcusButler

Release Your Stress from MarcusButler on 8tracks Radio.

Release Your Stress is a playlist filled with electronic beats. They’re airy music with slurred words - perfect for those who don’t want to make out the words (I know it can be too much of a hassle sometimes). Despite it being airy, the beats produced can be quite loud, but don't worry, the music is still in perfect sync.

 

Relax & Unwind by MVisintin

Another electronic playlist. However, it’s more to remixes than the previous playlist with a touch of softness. Also, if you’re into singing along while you’re laying flat on your bed, this playlist is for you, with its crystal clear lyrics.

 

Acoustics & Covers by Sophiuhh

Loaded with slow original songs, Acoustics & Covers is the epitome of relaxed and chilled. Covers are mostly acoustics, so that strengthens the playlist as a whole. The playlist is full of familiar tracks, so singing along to it (or mumbling through it) would be a breeze.

 

The Best Acoustics by lovepoemms

Yes, the playlist is worthy of its name. The user has no doubt collated great songs that had been turned into its acoustic version, and boy, what a bliss to my ears. With the acoustic melody of each track, you are sure to feel relaxed and cooled down.

 

Jazz Piano Study Mix by berberova

Out of the five, this playlist is the most unique. As its name states, this playlist is packed with jazz music. No vocals, just instruments. If you want the ultimate resting-your-mind tune, this playlist would be it.

 

Hope the playlist helps! Don’t stress out too much. Take one step at a time. You know the saying - doing it fast doesn't mean it’s perfect - is pretty helpful for a mere sentence.

Photo credit: YouTube

Do you aspire to follow in the footsteps of young artists like Greyson Chance, Cody Simpson and the ever-famous/infamous Justin Bieber who gained their fame and fandom from YouTube videos showing their raw, young talent? 

If you think you have what it takes, you have a fantastic opportunity in nEbO's Encore 2015 competition that is searching for the next big artist that can sing English or Mandarin songs, or even better, both!

All you have to do is put on your best performance singing your most impressive song/cover and you could win yourself a rare, residential performing stint at one of Singapore's most adored music venues, Timbré at The Substation, a great platform to launch your musical career!

YouTube video auditions are ongoing and here's how you can join:

Step 1: Submit a video of yourself singing on YouTube                                                                                           Step 2: Email the YouTube link and your registration form to encore@nEbO.com.sg

Online video submission ends 2 Jun 2015.

Find out more here!

Before Nate Ruess became popularly known as Fun.’s frontman and ventured his way to a solo career, he made indie rock/pop tunes with Sam Means. Together, they called themselves The Format.

I would describe their style as something that can lift up your mood and calms you down in times of existential breakdowns. We all have those moments, don’t we?

Nate Ruess didn’t specify the reasons of The Format’s break up but they did leave behind 2 albums and 5 EPs. The band performed several shows, which earned them a pretty good number of fans.

The Format’s first album, Interventions + Lullabies, for some reason gave me the Lizzie Mcguire vibe. It captured the energy of the early 2000s – carefree with no responsibilities whatsoever. It fills me with nostalgia. Their sophomore album, Dog Problems, seems to appeal to me a whole lot more because of it's more captivating melodies. It’s a pity the band don’t make music together anymore.

In memory of The Format, let’s bring back 3 of their most popular songs:

 

 
 

Photo credit: theformat.com

Look at that Kanye smile, how often do you get to see this always-serious man looking happy? Almost never, and we're pretty sure it's because he's enjoying his own music on a pretty good pair of headphones.

Let's face it, music sounds about 10 times more amazing when you're listening through a decent pair of headphones that give you the best sound quality possible, rather than blasting it through tiny little earpieces. 

We recently got our hands on renowned audio giants Klipsch's latest headphone model, the Klipsch Reference On-Ear (pictured above) and we can safely say it is much more than just decent. For those who love lots of bass, the Reference does just that and more with detailed high-end frequencies and clear vocals without any boomy or muddy layers.

The Klipsch Reference is priced affordably given it's great quality, and besides the one problem of the cable not being detachable (for you purists), it opens up your listening experience greatly and it will most definitely bring the best out of your favorite songs.

Check out our list of the top songs that you have to listen to on headphones below here.

(Listen to CD quality or higher if you want an even more awesome experience of these songs)

 

10. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Maps

First off our list is one of the greatest alternative love songs in recent times. Maps by indie rock trio Yeah Yeah Yeahs brings frontgirl Karen O's raw emotions straight through your ears and connects it to your heavy-ing heart with mesmerizing guitar layers and pounding drums that really fatten the overall sound in this majestic ballad.

 

9. Sia - Chandelier

One of the reasons Chandelier became a worldwide electropop hit for Australian artist Sia is the fact that it brings out the best of Sia's unbelievable vocal range and power, and when the heavy electronic beats and synths combine together, it's brings her voice to a whole new level.

 

8. Drake feat. Majid Jordan - Hold On, We're Going Home

This Michael Jackson-inspired track delves into synthpop and vaporwave sounds, so you can expect rushing waves of synths through your headphones behind Drake's soothing singing. Perfect song to chill-out to plugged in on your bed, eyes closed.

 

7. System Of A Down - Chop Suey!

All you need to know about this dynamic song is... well just put on your headphones and Chop Suey! will do all the talking. Turn up the volume and the pulsing drums and chugging guitars will definitely make you Wake Up! (wake up).

 

6. A$AP Rocky - Peso

Hip-hop tracks always sound great on a lovely pair of headphones and A$AP Rocky's breakout song Peso set the bar high for modern hip-hop artists today with crazy electronic bell licks and the artist's refreshing musical style.

 

5. The 1975 - The City

You wanna find good music then you know where you're headphones are. British boys The 1975 give an immense sonic performance in the entrancing The City with a dirty drum loop, soaring synths and Matty Healy's unique vocals.

 

4. Radiohead - Paranoid Android

Radiohead's 1997 concept album OK Computer was their best and a game-changer for many that brought forth the brilliant creation of the 6-and-a-half minute long epic track that is none other than Paranoid Android. This is alternative rock at its finest.

 

3. Tame Impala - Feels Like We Only Go Backwards

Psychedelic newcomer(s) from Australia, Tame Impala, has given pure psychedelia a little revival recently and off their critically-acclaimed album Lonerism, Feels Like We Only Go Backwards is trip to musical heaven with layered synths, groovy basslines and Kevin Parker's John Lennon-esque voice.

 

2. Pink Floyd - See Emily Play

Continuing the psychedelic theme, we look at one of the greats, Pink Floyd, who turn your headphones into a time machine to the psychedelic era. With so many sonically-out-of-this-world songs, it's hard to pick just one. See Emily Play is one of many classics, featuring Syd Barrett playing slide guitar with a lighter. Yes, a lighter. Oh how we wish we were born in the 60s.

 

1. Kanye West - BLKKK SKKKN HEAD

How could we not include this man on this list. Pretty much anything off Yeezus would've made the list but the explicit BLKKK SKKKN HEAD does the job the best. The unbelievable production on this track wins it for Kanye. Booming beats, tribal noises and his convincing lyrics we'll leave you glued to your headphones, eyes popped and jaw dropped.

*****

GIVEAWAY TIME!

Head on down to Klipsch's Facebook page and answer a very simple question. The two most creative answers win a pair of Kipsch headphones worth S$329 each! Get going now!