Fresh off her opening tour slot with Bastille, Best Laid Plans Records, Singer & artist Akine talks music, her band members and collaborators the Wavewalkrs, plus more at The Reclusive Blogger

The Reclusive Blogger: Hi, Akine. I always start with a fun ice breaker question so …

The Reclusive Blogger: Morning Bird or Night Owl?

Akine: Definitely Night Owl. I’m most productive from 10pm and 2am. That’s usually when i write too.

The Reclusive Blogger: Can you tell us how you got started as a singer and songwriter? Did you always want to be that?

Akine: Yes. As long as I remember I’ve always wanted to be a singer/ songwriter. It was either that or becoming a Pirate. There was no third option. I started writing lyrics and melodies when I was 11 or 12 and it gradually became an obsession, compulsion. By 16 I had enough material for a few albums. Some of it will never see the light of day but some of the songs are now released or will be later this year. My sister helped me record a few tracks and get them to a label. So here I am now.

The Reclusive Blogger: You released your debut EP, Don’t Foster Fear last year? What was the writing and recording process like for you? Especially being a young debut artist?

Akine: I had written a few songs that came together into a theme. I was going through a rough time at school, feeling like an outcast and just very anxious and fearful of everything. These feelings came to form the concept of the EP. Recording was pretty awesome. James Earp is a fantastic producer and now a great friend. He immediately got me and the music and the lyrics. It was so easy working with him. I’ve been lucky to be surrounded by people who believe in me so i cant say that I’ve had to struggle in that sense.

The Reclusive Blogger: You are currently playing a few shows with Bastille? How has that experience been for you? Have any you gotten any touring tips from your fellow tourmates?

Akine: The experience of touring has been a real eye opener. Watching BASTILLE, their work ethic, the way they prep and perform its just all done on such a high level of professionalism. They have been so supportive of my music from the very start. It’s pretty surreal that I went from being a Bastille fan to performing on one stage with Dan Smith. It’s been incredible, the experience, the people who make it all look so easy when there’s actually a ton of preparation that goes into playing every single show. I cant wait to do more live, its such a high. Also, being able to perform with my friends and band mates the Wavewalkrs it just didn’t feel like work. Physically demanding but also emotionally rewarding, that’s how id summarize touring.

The Reclusive Blogger: Speaking of Bastille … what’s your favourite Bastille song?

Akine: I have a few but I guess I would have to say “Two Evils”.

The Reclusive Blogger: What musician would you love to collaborate with? And Why?

Akine: There’s so many! I would love to collaborate with Fiona Apple, Modeselector, Mitski, Brockhampton or Ben Howard.

The Reclusive Blogger: Is there a lyric that you’ve written that has the most meaning for you or is your favorite?

Akine: In “Cashmere” I wrote about a girl I used to be close with and as we grew apart as friends, our values also changed and it broke my heart a little bit. I guess at one point being cool and popular became a priority for her and in a way I felt like she chose that over our friendship.

“Everything you do, you do it for the camera, the likes and the views. Writing your name on the walls, i was here. Gotta remind them or they will forget”

Cashmere by Akine

The Reclusive Blogger: Throwing in a fun one here… If you could live in any fictional universe, which would you choose?
Akine: I would either live in Pirates of the Carribean themed universe or Harry Potter world. Definitely somewhere really spontaneous where anything could happen.
The Reclusive Blogger: Are there any artists that have been “On Repeat” for you lately? What music have you been digging?
Akine: Mitski, Mitski, Mitski. I’m a fan

The Reclusive Blogger: And what’s next for you Akine?

Akine: More music. Hopefully I’ll get an album together before the end of the year and release that. Like I said before, I want to travel and play live, I love meeting the people that listen to my music.

The Reclusive Blogger: Anything else you would like to add? 🙂

Akine: Have a great day))

To learn more about Akine go here: https://www.akinemusic.com

Follow Akine on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/akine.music/

Follow Akine on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/thisisakine

Stream/Buy “Don’t Foster Fear” here: https://songwhip.com/album/akine/dont-foster-fear

You can also learn more about Best Laid Plans Records and all of their amazing artists including Akine go here: https://bestlaidplansrecords.com

Until then,
Brittney x
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My favorite British Alternative Pop band Bastille made their return to Los Angeles last night (September 24th). Taking The Wiltern stage by storm (pun intended) with a new and quite colorful lively stage setup. Bastille played to a *sold out* house performing many fan favorites and new songs, which of course included the bands’ current mega-hit ‘Happier’ a collaboration with Marshmello which is also set to be included on the bands’ upcoming mixtape Other People’s Heartache PT 4. The release date was announced at the show and is in less than two weeks time!

The band is more sprightly than ever, the Wild World days are now gone having been replaced by a new stage setup and backdrop in preparation for the bands’ forthcoming album ‘Doom Days’. It’s bright, it’s colorful and it’s very ‘Bastille’.

The opener was a singer-songwriter named Fletcher was lovely and showcased some killer vocals. It was a great way to kick off a night of fun music. If you haven’t heard of her I would definitely check her out.

Bastille took to the stage promptly at 9:15pm opening up with Wild World’s lead single ‘Good Grief’. The night proceeded with the band playing 20 songs, rocking The Wiltern way up to the balcony (where I was). Highlights from the setlist included crowd favorites ‘The Draw’ where the band goes absolutely insane and rocks out, crowd participation fave ‘Of The Night’, ‘Flaws’, ‘Warmth’, (where self-proclaimed “bad dancer” Dan dances like no one’s watching … when everyone is) and of course the three newest songs, ‘Happier’, ‘World Gone Mad’ and a ‘Quarter Past Midnight’. Bastille like always ended the show with their debut ‘Pompeii’ and everyone in attendance left the venue ‘Happier’ (pun very much intended), looking forward to OPH 4, ‘Doom Days’, and whenever the next Bastille show happens in Los Angeles.

View the photos I took below using #Hujicam #Huji #Bastille #Happier #bastilledan

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Until then
Brittney W.

Good grief!

The Bastille boys have done it again, my favorite band has a knack for surprising us fans with music out of the blue and in this case beautiful shot soundcheck videos! If you haven’t seen Bad News it’s linked.

So with only a day of warning my favorite South London based band released the amazingly cinematic live performance version of their latest single Quarter Past Midnight. It was filmed during soundcheck at the Royal Albert Hall in London on the bands’ ReORCHESTRATED tour.

The video not only beautifully shot but well edited is interspersed with clips from the actual live show. All which help to not only capture the high energy and freneticism of a Quarter Past Midnight but a Bastille live show as well. It also features a bigger glimpse into the choir and the orchestra that was a major part of the ReORCHESTRATED tour for those who could not be apart. But don’t only take my word for it. Go watch now below …

“QUARTER PAST MIDNIGHT” // (LIVE FROM ROYAL ALBERT HALL)”

Until then,

Brittney W.

Bastille - Quarter Past Midnight - Single Review

The Bastille boys are back with a ‘Quarter Past Midnight’, a very British and much needed bop for the Summer”

So today is a big day for me being a Bastille fan. The band, which consists of Dan Smith, Will Farquarson, Chris “Woody” Wood, and Kyle Simmons, just released their first single off their upcoming record (no release date yet, but soon). The single “Quarter Past Midnight” premiered on BBC Radio 1 as one of Annie Mac’s Hottest record. Lead singer, Dan Smith had been filling in for her with an actual BBC Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw all week.

The single “Quarter Past Midnight” is a beautiful and major change of pace stylistically for the Bastille. With the lyrics exploring the themes of crazy yet fun nights out. The times where most of us have already retired for the night or heading home to do so. The song explores in a unique way the alternate life of people who are not home, they are just getting started at a “Quarter Past Midnight”. It’s theme that Bastille is not a stranger to, it’s a theme that they truly find home in thus taking it to a more truly poetic and universal level.

The music still very much Bastille and with all of the lovely Bastille quirks intact reminds me of late 80s to early 90s Brit Rock/Pop from bands like Placebo, Oasis, Blur and My Bloody Valentine in some places. With heavy hits of Europop and Dance spiking in between as the music on the track slides up and down in tempo. Dan’s vocals match perfectly going from a beautiful frenetic pace, to a softer tone, to high falsetto all in the span of only a few seconds. Sounds just like a night out right? The bits of guitar add grit and yes somehow the band managed to add their signature movie quotes into the song. Although I can barely make them out.

All in all this is a fantastic start to the Bastille era. They have made so many fans (including me) very happy. I cannot wait to hear the rest of the record and see what a “Quarter Past Midnight” music video looks like.

P.S. Major props to the guys for the epic Joy Division reference in the opening lines!

Listen/Buy “Quarter Past Midnight”

Official Bastille

Bastille Socials:

Dan Smith:
Twitter: @bastilledan
Instagram: @bastilledan
Chris ‘Woody’ Wood:
Twitter: @woodythedrum
Kyle Simmons:
Twitter: @Kyle_JSimmons
Will Farquarson:
Twitter: @willyfarquarson

– Brittney W. 🙂 xx

(All photos courtesy of Bastille and their management)

Hey kiddos, I’m back with another album review. Actually two. But the first review is the stunning record by the British Singer-Songwriter, Charlie Barnes who is also a touring band member with Bastille. The album is named “Oceanography” and aptly named as well. The entire album surrounding my ears with lush vocals and guitar tones all made to sound or correlate with the ocean I could only guess. The cover even features a circle of abstract ocean blues in the middle of a colorless nothing.

Photo courtesy of Charlie Barnes
Oceanography by Charlie Barnes

The opening track on “Oceanography” is quite a usual one appropriately titled “Intro”. The uniqueness of “Intro” fully sets in when you realize it’s all drowned out chatter, footsteps and random commotion. So … wait?! Are we in a Coffee shop Charlie? Next, we segue into the title track which is very reminiscent of Brit-Pop in the 90s with added electro elements and sweeping guitars. I even hear some classical instrumentation in the back which add to the dramatics of the song. We next launch into “Will and Testament” which also show how much touring with Bastille has influenced the Derbyshire musician. Not only are Dan Smiths’ (Bastille lead singer) vocals featured in the background. You can truly hear here the electronic production the most. On songs “Oceanography” and “Will And Testament” Charlie’s voice which is so unique and unlike most voices out there soars the most. Songs like “Bruising” and “Ruins” showcase more of Charlie’s roots as a musician with heavy melodic elements and acoustic guitar. “One Word Answers” is a fun guitar jam that’s heavy on the drums and melody. The chorus is where it truly shines through, with the lyric; “And I only give you one-word answers”. Pay attention for that high note and the bits of tambourine throughout!

“The Departure”, “Legacy”, and “Former Glories” are all slower more peaceful moments on the album that remind me of the tide rolling in. Where Charlie’s voice is at the forefront with more introspective lyrics. I even hear a bit of very early Coldplay with a slight jazzy or Bossa Nova vibe. The mood picks up slightly with “Maria” which has a slight shuffle to it beat … And a quite lovely guitar solo. The mood picks up even more with “All I have” which has a beautiful message all packed into this song. Never give up your dreams (in this case creative ones) no matter how hard it gets. You also must check out the video which I’ll post below! We end “Oceanography” with “The Weather”. A bittersweet piano-driven ballad with the most heartfelt lyrics, that features a coffee analogy in the beginning just like album’s “Intro” does.

Photo Courtesy of Charlie Barnes

Link to buy and stream: Oceanography

Charlie Barnes – All I Have (Official Video) https://youtu.be/C_oSzAHLGwc

Charlie Barnes Socials:

|Official Website|Twitter | Facebook| Instagram|YouTube|

Much love,
Brittney 🙂 xx

Twitter: @trbcreative
Instagram: @trbcreative

So now that the “Glory” video has been out for a bit and I’ve had a chance to digest it all including reading everyone’s theory’s and so on and so forth. I had gone back and forth deciding on whether or not I should put forth my thoughts or not. But I decided to give it a go …

So first off to me what I define as “Art”. Is something that can evoke or elicit an emotion from within you. Whether it’s good or bad. That’s something this video definitely did. It was shot beautiful and has a wonderful cinematic quality to it. With the storyline carefully played out so the viewer could make it’s own mind up on certain things. All of this done within a five minute mark. Now to my opinion on the storyline itself. Well I don’t think either characters are dead. In fact it wasn’t something I consider until I started reading other people thoughts, theory’s and summations online. I never once considered that. But once again that goes back to the how great the storyline was written where it left much of it up for your interpretation. As for the relationship of the couple. I tended to lean towards a friendship that could be more or turn into something more. But from within the scope of the video did it truly matter? They obviously cared deeply for each other. So that’s what really mattered. I also loved the hints and nods to the Bastille videos of the past like Bad Blood. To me the video overall expressed the viewpoint of enjoying your friendships and relationships,etc that you have now because time flies and they could be gone forever. It was told in a beautifully cinematic way of a summer road trip between two friends whilst interpolating those great Bastille quirks we have come to know and love. I say bravo to another great Bastille video. And maybe just maybe, one filled with hope and yes of course Glory so much Glory.

Much love always! 🙂 xx

– Brittney W. aka The Reclusive Blogger

P.S. Here’s the video below …

BASTILLE // GLORY