Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Playlist: My Clarity

I really love the idea of sharing playlists of my favourite music, and I recently stumbled across 8tracks, which is a really awesome way of putting together playlists and sharing them online. So, I thought I'd give it a try. This is my first ever playlist, just a collection of my current favourite songs including Foxes, Paramore, All Time Low and Bebe Rexha ♥

Clarity - Zedd ft. Foxes // Lived A Lie - You Me At Six // Comeback Kids - Bebe Rexha // Burn - Ellie Goulding // This Is Gospel - Panic! At The Disco // You (Ha Ha Ha) - Charli XCX // A Love Like War - All Time Low ft. Vic Fuentes // Roar - Katy Perry // Proof - Paramore // The Unknown - Foxes

Friday, 6 September 2013

Start of Term Wishlist

1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5

So, it's almost time to go back to uni for my final year, which also means it's almost time for the next instalment of my student loan! I flat out refused to work in retail again this year, so I've been living on what little I had left from the last loan this summer. That meant I could barely afford any new clothes, so I'd say I deserve a bit of a splurge when my loan comes in at the end of the month. 

I have an intense love of all things plaid, and this mini skirt reminds me of something you'd see on a Spice Girl back in the 90s. For some reason, that makes me really want to own it, and I should probably be ashamed of that, but nope! I have no real justification for the dress, other than it's pretty and my wardrobe is severely lacking in dresses right now. I spent years avoiding jeans like the plague, but this year I finally found a pair I love in River Island, so now I just want more. The jumper is admittedly pretty similar to the pile of last years jumpers that I have stashed in my wardrobe, but it's nearly autumn, and I want a new one. Plus, in my defence, I don't actually own a black one right now... I absolutely love Jac Vanek's clothing line, but when you take the postage costs to the UK into account, I can rarely justify spending that much on a top. But, I've been lusting after the 'mean hearts' top since it was released, and I'm really really tempted to treat myself!

Review: Ariana Grande - Yours Truly

I’ve always considered myself to have a pretty diverse music taste. But, as someone that’s been pretty obsessed with the whole ‘pop punk’ genre since my early teenage years, Ariana Grande definitely wasn’t someone that I expected to be so impressed with.

I remember hearing her song ‘Put Your Hearts Up’ a few years ago, and it was stupidly catchy and I couldn’t stop singing it to myself. It was basically the definition of happy, bubblegum-pop. But, apart from that, it wasn’t particularly memorable.

She came back to my attention earlier this year, when my 6 year old sister started watching the Nickelodeon show, ‘Victorious’, in which Grande plays Cat Valentine. While yeah, the songs on the show are shamelessly cheesy, they did remind me how great Ariana’s voice is. I ended up looking her up again, and found she was on the verge of releasing her debut album, ‘Yours Truly.’

I was slightly worried that, as someone who was already established as a Nickelodeon star, Grande wouldn’t be able to break out of that kid’s-pop mould with her album. I mean, for everyone like Demi Lovato, who’s managed to forge herself a pretty credible music career and put her child star status behind her, there’s legions of Disney and Nick stars than have attempted music careers that have utterly fallen flat.

For Ariana Grande, that doesn’t seem to be a problem. Even before the full album was released, songs like ‘The Way’ and ‘Baby I’ set the tone for what seems to be a kind of 90s, r&b style album, a whole world away from the cheesy Nickelodeon music. I’ve read a whole lot of comments and reviews likening her to a young Mariah Carey, and while that’s a pretty huge comparison to make, I feel pretty confident in saying Ariana more than lives up to it. She’s got the look, and more importantly, the incredible vocal range that definitely reminds me of the Mariah songs I used to listen to when I was younger.

I was a little concerned that when the full album came out, it would just be an overkill of Grande’s high vocal register. But, after listening to ‘Yours Truly’ through a few times, I think it perfectly shows off her versatility as a vocalist. While yeah, there are plenty of occasions where her high register is used, there are also songs like ‘Tattooed Heart’, ‘Almost Is Never Enough’ and ‘Honeymoon Avenue’ that display a much more varied vocal range that really proves Ariana’s voice is more than just a Mariah-wannabe gimmick.

I do have one criticism of the album, and that’s the inclusion of the song ‘Popular Song,’ with Grande worked on with Mika. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love this song, and I think Mika and Ariana’s voices sound incredible together. But, I just don’t think it fits in at all with the whole 90s nostalgia theme that seems to run throughout the rest of the album. Maybe it would have worked as a bonus track, but as it stands, it’s slapped right in the middle of ‘Almost Is Never Enough’ and ‘Better Left Unsaid,’ and I think it really takes a lot away from the flow of the album.

Aside from that, the album really is something that Grande should be incredibly proud of. It’s clear just how much hard work she’s put in to making sure ‘Yours Truly’ is exactly what she wanted it to be, and its’ definitely paid off. As far as I’m concerned, Grande deserves every bit of the success that’s inevitably coming her way with the release of this album.

Check out Ariana singing 'Tattooed Heart' live on the Today Show for an example of just how incredible her voice is.

You can buy a copy of 'Yours Truly' from iTunes or Amazon 

Tuesday, 3 September 2013


So, over the last few years, I've proved to myself that I have a pretty short attention span, especially when it comes to committing to running a blog. I've set up many a blogger account, and told myself time and time again that this time, I was going to stick to it.

Well. This time, I'm going to stick to it.

I kinda think the problem I've been having before is that I've tried to make my blogs fit into certain labels. Last year I was absolutely determined that I wanted to get into the music industry for my career, so I started up a music blog. Don't get me wrong, I do love writing about music, but I think the blog became something I was doing just to prove my interest in music so I'd have something to show when it comes to applying for jobs in the future. So inevitably, after barely a few months I gave up on it.

This time, I've decided I'm not going to restrict myself. Even back in primary school, writing has been something I've always done, even if it was just for the little school newspaper. I did some work experience in a little marketing office in my town this summer, and a big part of what I was doing revolved around writing. It wasn't anything particularly thrilling - think promotional articles about pipes - but it did remind he much I miss writing. I'm really hoping that creating a space for myself to be able to write down whatever grabs my attention, be it about music, fashion, or just whatever happens to be going on in my life, will encourage me to keep it up.

So here it goes. My name's Hayley. I'm a 20 year old marketing student, and I split my time between home in Cambridgeshire, and uni in Northampton. I love tattoos, TV and pop punk.

Welcome to my blog!