Its so hard to find the silent type,
Someone shy who won’t spread the hype,
You’re so cold and you’re in this crowd,
I am on my way now


What If

With a month in Israel full of coach journeys ahead of me, I imagined discovering parts of my iPod that I didn’t even know about. I pictured myself getting to know tracks that had lingered amongst the thousands but I had never listened to before the trip, discovering lyrics that were yet to be heard. Yet one week of three and a half in, other than flirting with bands such as Kings of Leon and the Black Keys I had listened to very little besides Bombay Bicycle Club debut album ‘I Had the Blues but I Shook Them Loose’. Had I known I would have listened to almost nothing but one album one loop prior to the trip I would have been disappointed in myself; having not taken the opportunity of widening my musical pallet- yet from that point having listened to only a small selection of tracks felt like a satisfying choice.

What pulled me to press play each time was the varying use of guitar and maturity the band produced five years back. That range is shown in the difference between the stunning acoustic solo in the last couple of minutes of the song ‘The Giantess’ and the opening of ‘Evening/Morning’. The short intro to Evening/Morning gives us an idea of how much of the album is pieced together. However the Giantess solo brings the album to a grand close; the two contrasting styles displaying the band’s musical talent.

Prior to writing this post, I went through the album thinking of any particular endings or introductions worth mentioning before realising that besides the above two, the album is so full of them that I can’t narrow them down- which is reflected when I put two songs from this album into my post ‘Top Eleven Favourite Intros’. Before I end I think it’s worth mentioning that the band began in UCS, which is right next door to where I went to primary school- and that they are named after the Indian takeaway restaurant nearby. And the album cover? I’m pretty sure that’s taken in Hyde Park. I’ll be seeing BBC as one of the headliners of Latitude festival this weekend.




Dear Readers,

By the title I think I’ve made it pretty clear what the subject of this post is to be about. However, if you’ve never experienced the frustration of buying an album on a whim, realizing that the music on it is too poppy, slow, or so teen angst-y, that every verse was practically a dear-diary-why-is-everyone-against-me moment, that you send it into hibernation in your i-tunes library; then I think you should seriously question your inability to be impulsive… and waste money.

If the glee of uncovering this said album months or years later and absolutely savoring every track until the last song dies out and the repeat button has long since malfunctioned, is a feeling you have known, then read on! Here are my top albums that have spent a little too long in the cluttered corners of my CD- collection.

1. Imagine Dragons- Night Visions

When I first got this album, the almost nonsensical lyrics didn’t mesh with me; they didn’t delve deep enough to provoke any emotion, especially in tracks like ‘Amsterdam’ or ‘I Don’t Mind’. I got back into them with a ferocious nature when my sister expressed her interest in the band. Now the album is one of my favorites, some tracks may have rather sad lyrics, but they are accompanied by these wonderful ‘optimistic’ beats – I feel really joyful when I listen to this album, it’s quite happy-go-lucky.  The song writer depicts taking things into your stride and being, well… optimistic! (Which gives way to the lyrics that tend to dance around the subject instead of describe them fully) My favorite songs right now are ‘Selene’, ‘Tiptoe’ and ‘Demons’.

2. Pop Party 5

A look of disdain is probably spreading across your face as you read the title, but I don’t care! They remind me of simpler times, when CDs like these were played at 5th birthday parties and cake was consumed in overwhelming amounts. With (terrifying) future prospects and obligations that fill me with dread being on the horizon; I can tune in, and zone out, wrapped up in the bubblegum pink paper of childish fancy. These songs don’t explain heartbreak in excruciating detail or lament the terrible decisions we have made; they burst in, and order me to laugh, and smile, for anything that made me dance as a child could never be taken seriously now. Besides… they have the greats: Lily Allen, Take That, McFly (this whole McBusted thing is another collaboration that I will love to loath in the future), Mika! Sometimes I just need to listen to these songs, watch a Disney film, and pull my Teddy Bear (his name is  R) out from under my bed… it’s the only way I’ll stay sane!

3. Billy Bragg- Life’s A Riot With Spy Vs Spy

Unfortunately, I can’t get the album cover up on the blog (ah the irritations of technology), but I felt I had to pull out the big guns in order to redeem myself after the 5 year old in me took over to wreak havoc on my (non-existent) musical reputation.

Last but not least, the album that I almost never listened to for a while. Billy Bragg is like the older, more politicized version of another singer I love, called Cosmo Jarvis. When I first acquired this CD, the sum of the tracks I enjoyed were too little to justify my listening of the tracks I couldn’t stand. Those songs didn’t reach me, they commented on society and experiences I am yet to have; it was difficult to identify with the lyrics. Some examples are ‘Fear Is A Man’s Best Friend’, ‘The Cloth’ or ‘The Busy Girl Buys Beauty’. The first song I heard of Bragg’s was ‘A New England’ and I think I wrongly mistook him for a happy-go-lucky singer who would write mostly about early romance and other easily deconstructed topics, and found it difficult to adapt to his way of writing. As I grew older, analyzing his poetry became easier and I realize that his work is passionate and fiery, I couldn’t understand it because I didn’t have a passion of my own. My favorites include ‘The Milkman Of  Human Kindness’ and ‘The Man In The Iron Mask’.

So that’s it; the songs that really do need a bit of time and space to flourish into wonderful works of art that will capivate you, so you find yourself  listening again and again.


P.S. Not sure of my feelings on the Alice Cooper documentary ‘Super Dooper Alice Cooper’ which has found it’s way to my local cinema. Hopefully I’ll be able to get myself over there and let y’all know what I think!


Last Thursday, Ethan and I traveled all the way to KINGSTON UPON THAMES (yeah, I know), to see Metronomy play a gig at McClusky’s, a nightclub that was just as hard to locate with the naked eye as it was with the help of Google maps. I knew the gig would be intimate, but there can’t have been more than 80 people, which I really enjoyed, as I was expecting to be gasping for air as I skirted around a mosh pit. I also knew the gig would be open to all ages, but I still didn’t expect there to be such a range. There were five year olds, high above the crowd and perched upon their parent’s shoulders, teenagers, twenty year olds, thirty year olds, forty plus and I think I even saw an elderly member of the public, headbanging or something. How rock and roll is that?

The band played fan favorites as well as most of their newest ‘Love Letters’ album. Ethan’s more of a Metronomy… nut than I am, but I think that a) the kindly priced tickets and b) the very energetic women in front of us made me exited to follow their future steps.

I really like a performance, as well as good music when it comes to playing live. Although they all put effort into including the crowd and giving a bit of a show, I think that was the only place they faltered. My favorite of the band is the bassist, Olugbenga Adelekan, just watching him bob about as he played his made me smile. My absolute favourite song of the night was the last they played, for different reasons than that, obviously, and it’s called ‘The Most Immaculate Haircut’, I really like the simple things that the writer envies about the man in the song. The grass is always greener on the other side, but having better plant feed wont make you as happy as you imagine.

Um… superb lighting and all that, security guards did a great job (not on the lighting, that would be daft).


Don’t talk about me, let’s talk about you
I know your type, I know exactly what you want to do
And if the money’s right, you think I’ll just agree?
  So sad to see you torn apart by all your selfish greed”

Sell Yourself from Thank You, Happy Birthday

Kentucky based Cage the Elephant arrived onto my music scene with their 2011 album Thank You Happy Birthday, their singles being Shake Me Down, Aberdeen and Around My Head. Bear in mind that Cage the Elephant are one of those bands whose fame doesn’t travel well Transatlantic. It took their biggest song, Shake Me Down, (the Nine-Million-YouTube-Hitter) for the other side of the Atlantic to find out what all the fuss was about. Let’s look at another band that haven’t travelled well transatlantic, but from this side. Two Door Cinema Club, huge in Britain, but as far as I know haven’t made it as big in North America. What is it the link? There isn’t one. That’s the link. We can see the link with there not being one, which is where we notice the huge contrasts: one are a fun Indie pop band that are refreshing to listen to in the summer from Northern Ireland (but feel a bit out of place on the cold bus home in January), and one remind you of the harsh reality that is the selfish and unrelenting human being. In this example, we see simply that it’s the more laid back, seasonal bands that make it big at home in Britain, but in (some parts) of North America it’s the intense group that attract interest.

As we’re on the topic of unrelenting and selfish human beings, I’ll be moving onto the Thank You, Happy Birthday track Sell Yourself (which has a quote in bold italics at the top). This is where we see front man Matt Schulz enter a psychedelic trance that merges the bands’ music with rap. This is the pinpoint moment I imagine fans at a concert, what I like to call, “completely and utterly losing their shit.”

Shake Me Down is Cage the Elephant’s most sought after song, which expresses the suppression and aftershock of loss. It’s this lyric that epitomises what I love about them. This is their niche; they aren’t here to talk about sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll, they’re here to analyse something else: loss. Complemented by a melancholy video we see the band telling the tale of a family losing its father.

“In my life, I have seen,
People walk into the sea,
Just to find memories,
Plagued by constant misery,
Their eyes cast down,
Fixed upon the ground,
Their eyes cast down”

The album cover has the words ‘Cage the Elephant’ etched over it in different colours, with the name of the album scribbled into the bottom right hand corner in orange. In the middle of the word ‘Elephant’, there is a mysterious purple blotch and a sort of lemniscates above the band’s name. The band have covered many songs, my favourite being their take on Talking Heads’ ‘Psycho Killer’, which I’ve left a link for below.

Thanks for reading, Ethan.

On the Saturday morning of five weekends ago, excitement slowly bubbled up inside me as I counted the seconds, minutes, and excruciating hours until it was time for me to hop on the underground, and go and see my favourite-tist (is that a word?) band in the ENTIRE universe. Surrey serenaders (again, is that a word?), You Me at Six.

Even though the front-liners were 30 Seconds to Mars, You Me at Six are releasing an album in January and were bound to be playing some new material. I bought two tickets on my mum’s credit card (with permission) and a few months later, found myself in a concert hall absolutely packed with (surprisingly) a variety of age ranges. There was even an elderly couple a few rows in front of me!

It was granted that I would love every second of You Me at Six’s set, but I wasn’t expecting to utterly enjoy 30STM as much as I did.

The first songs of theirs that I heard were pre-makeover. The front man, Jared Leto, was still wearing black eyeliner, his black mop of hair a startling contrast against the ghastly pallor of his skin; and the band had a more ‘metal’ or ‘soft rock’ sound overall. It first became evident to me that the band had undergone a ‘spruce up’ in the music video of ‘Kings and Queens’, the lead single from their 2009 album ‘This is War’. The change wasn’t so much in the music, but in Jared’s make-up free face, his emo locks had been ditched for a sort of ‘bed head’ look. Pretty drastic if you ask me. My faith in them had diminished quite a lot when I listened to their newest album . It seemed that their killing guitar had been swapped for techno beats and random Indian singing (if you’ve heard Pyres of Varanasi you’ll know what I’m talking about). I felt like they’d become too worldly; peaceful for me, and had sold out at the same time.

However, when the trio to hopped up on stage, I gave them another chance. Partly because it was my (mother’s) money that was ‘frittered away so foolishly’ to come and watch them, and, I’m a strong believer that a live performance can improve any song. When the intro of their first track started, I rolled my eyes as Jared Leto came skipping out in a fur cape. I mean, come on! YOU’RE SOPHISTICATED ROCKERS, WE KNOW. But then… I melted. There was everything I look for in a band. Showmanship, powerful live vocals and the ability to have fun with the audience. Mr. Leto was cracking jokes, having conversations with people in the front row, and inviting people up on stage. By the second song, I was up on my feet, obediently following his instructions to ‘Jump! Jump! Jump!’.

Once I was in the moment, the music was so empowering. The vocals were electric, and shouting at me, saying ‘we will rise again! All we need is faith’. Like we could start a revolution all by ourselves, in that very hall. And the best thing was, I didn’t feel like I’d somehow cheated myself and strayed over to the side I’d  verbally battered only hours before. I had so much fun, and next time 30STM are in town, I might buy a ticket closer to the stage. Hell, I might even get myself invited up there!

Below are two of the band’s songs. The first ‘The Kill’ is pre-makeover, whilst the second, ‘Kings and Queens’ is at the start of their change up.

‘The Kill’ is pre-makeover, from their second album, ‘A Beautiful Lie’

‘Bright Lights’ is from their latest album, ‘Love, Lust, Faith + Dreams’ and was released after their change up.


Weezer- The Blue Album

Posted: November 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

I’d like to commemorate our re-opening with a post on the 1994 album (The Blue Album) by Weezer. The album first came to my attention when their video ‘Buddy Holly’ appeared on the T.V- or rather it caught my mum’s eye, who felt nostalgic with the return of ‘Happy Days’, which she apparently watched every afternoon. This is my take on how influential the album was, especially its general image.

“I talked for hours to your wallet photograph
And you just listened
You  laughed enchanted by intellect
Or maybe you didn’t    
You remain turned away
Turning further  every day

“The world has turned and left me here
Just where I was  before you appeared
And in your place an empty space
Has filled the void  behind my face”

So, what does that mean? Weezer here are portraying the image of a loved one who has left, (which doesn’t necessarily mean that they have died). That could be a parent, sibling, spouse or friend. The band have done something unusual there: not discussing death, or what it’s like to be without the person who has left, but have been remarkable by not broadcasting an harsh and angry tune. This example could be far fetched, but one of the first links that comes to mind with death and music is thrash metal. The image that comes to mind is of men wearing black face paint, black clothes and black guitars. Pierced tongues, pierced belly buttons, pierced noses. Tattooed body, masks, spiked boots. You get the idea (essentially a description of Slipknot). Here, however, we find a gentler approach. The harshness is softened by the backing vocals to give a less painful harmony. (You won’t get many Slipknot comparisons with the video Island In The Sun)

Tracks Say It Ain’t So, In The Garage and Holiday sum up the album. In The Garage discovers the more introverted lead singer Rivers Cuomo talk about keeping safe in one place- which we assume he means physically, but really could too mean that he doesn’t feel safe mentally when he’s with other people. Holiday is the more adventurous, outgoing Weezer that’s concentration of tune to lyrics is heavier here on the tune, whilst Say It Ain’t So is a more aggressive song, with the more heart felt lyrics about relationships not lasting as long as they should. The darker side of Weezer.

What is Weezer’s image, music aside? Starting with the album cover, we get the idea of a more innocent, benign group. Even the sky blue background generates the sense that they are an exciting, witty band, who care about their image. We see this in the video Buddy Holly with the trickery of the band looking as if they’re on the show Happy Days and band members in two places at once. In the Say It Ain’t So video, the lyrics are reflected with the video set in a teenage boys’ bedroom and the general adolescent smell is there with the sunken shoulders and overall 20 years old body language.

The album in general is about adolescent feelings and emotions mixing with feelings about sex and disappointment. The image that’s projected is intellectual, introverted and occasionally we get some dry humour. However, later on in Weeper’s career, many of those traits change (which I’ll discuss another time). I hope you’ve enjoyed this first taste of Juvenile Hearing being open again.


By the time I have finished this post it will have only been an hour since I discovered this musical treasure in the suggestions bar of YouTube. And I thank god I did.

After stripping my room of most of its wall decor, I sat down under my naked light bulb, in my naked room, to a computer with an email equipped with a bursting junk mail folder. YouTube was my go to site, as I was researching a not-very-good blues band (naming no names) for this very post. My blog subject quickly changed as I came across… The Growlers.

The only way to describe this band is to say their sound is very American. They sound like the kind of music you’d find played in some crummy holiday themed all-you-can-eat on the outskirts of Las Vegas. Except that this buffet is actually the scenery on a film set, for a film with a tremendous soundtrack.

Half way through the first track, (Someday) something began to stir. But as soon as the last notes of the second track (Naked Kids) played out, I was in love. Not the kind of love that is defined on Wikipedia, but the swaying in my chair, never wanting it to end, wishing I could be frozen in that moment and never forget it kind of love that can leave you singing in the shower for weeks.

I loved Naked Kids so much because the lyrics are absolutely heartbreaking, but the husky voice on the track knocks them down heartlessly, leaving you baffled as to how someone can sing such things with no emotion. But the lack of heart gives the song a new twist, probably better this way than if it was wailed by a soppy teen. At the same time though, the music enhances the singer’s neutral tone, perhaps if it was sung A Capella, it would sound more heartfelt.

Give ’em a listen, and you won’t regret it.


Happy Birthday to us!

Posted: September 12, 2013 in Uncategorized

One year ago today, I (Ethan), wrote my first ever post on what was known as ecsindiemusicblog. In this last year I’ve learnt about myself, the music I listen to and improved my literary skills, and I’m sure you will agree. I’m delighted to thank you for being here to be with us for a whole year.


Keep subscribing, commenting and following!

Thank you, Ethan.


Sound of Silver- LCD Soundsystem

Posted: September 8, 2013 in Uncategorized

Today I’m going to share with you a band who have come and gone, and why a bit of luck can come handy when you accidentally buy an album.

“Though when we’re running out of the drugs
and the conversation’s winding away.
I wouldn’t trade one stupid decision 
for another five years of lies.”

Those lyrics from All My Friends off the album Sound of Silver by the LCD Soundsystem

Slowly strolling across the village-like compact disc palace that is Camden Town, I find yet another stall selling someone’s journey of CD history and embark on an album I’ve been meaning to buy for a number of months. Take note that this CD is in fact not the one I was looking for, but one simply buy the same band. I had known who LCD Soundsystem were, I just only knew them for their one song ‘Drunk Girls’, which I had thought was on this album. Of course I had checked the back of the CD before buying it, but I thought to myself, ‘go on, take a gamble. You’ve heard one of their songs, so you could very well fall in love with this album.’

As the other albums I had just acquired were ones I knew well, this one was the first one I was going to listen to. The first thing I noticed about it was that each song was significantly longer than your average song on your average album. Each song was about five to seven minutes (with exceptions); but was that a good or bad thing? Quite frankly, until I had listened to it I didn’t know. I don’t mind taking a good eight and a half minutes to listen to one piece, but it would take a plentiful sense of concentration.

So, how was it? If you’re wandering whether an eight and a half minute song was too long, I can tell you, as  I expected, it was enjoyable. It even let me discover the song for longer, it stretched out the timespan I had to ponder thoughts I had throughout the song rather than bunching them into (what seems molecular after listening to this song) two or three minutes.  The band pull off a magnificent concoction of electro-indie like Hot Chip and mellow lyrics like Yuck. Something else that stands out in the album is the amount that the USA is talked about, including the two songs ‘North American Scum’, and ‘New York I Love You, But You’re Bringing Me Down’.

The track I’d recommend you listen to most is ‘New York I Love You, But You’re Bringing Me Down’. It starts off with lead singer James Murphy playing a solo part on the piano, and eventually the drums and bass come in and the song lifts from a very melancholy vibe into a more vivacious and exciting movement. Suddenly we come across an effervescent climax and what we think is the end, but only those of us that wait until the very end of the piece, like that feeling of when we find the hidden track in an album, find one last explosion of sound.


If you’d like to subscribe to Juvenile Hearing, you can by clicking on the handy grey button in the bottom right hand corner and entering your email address, or alternatively you could comment on this piece by filling in this form below.

Thanks for reading!



2013 – Summer of Music

Posted: August 31, 2013 in Uncategorized

Before August came around, I would search for eccentric items on eBay with an eager hand on my full purse. But alas, September’s dog ear is poking out from my Schnauzer calender, the end (of Summer) is nigh; and my wallet has been wrung dry. I’m back from Berlin, and a week on a canal boat round the ‘soft parts’ of backstreet Birmingham left me worse for wear. So now, dreading the return to a 9 to 5 norm, I look down at my shopping bags. Now, I’m not a shopaholic, all I bought was a few Cd’s, a T-shirt and some vintage finds; but all my money is GONE!

Not to worry, because this is my holiday scrapbook. Now I have souvenirs of a great Summer, and there’s no forgetting the ‘struggling musician’s camp out’  by the Schönefeld U-Bahn when I can look down to my ‘You are leaving the American Sector’ t-Shirt (in reference to the Berlin wall).

So here’s to the Summer’s past, the Summer’s to come, and the Summer departing, the Summer of Music.

All the Cd’s I bought, clockwise from left,

  • Muse – Absolution                                                                      I adore Roy Orbision, wanna know why?
  • Ludovico Einaudi – Nightbook                                                   Because he drove all night! If you don’t know
  • Little Green Cars – Absolute Zero                                              I’m going on about, the video’s down below.
  • The Real Elvis Ultimate Collection
  • Of Monsters And Men – My Head Is And Animal