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Let’s Talk: How much does a cover art matter to you in music?

Does the cover art reflect your general mood to the music?

Does it influence how you listen to the music?

Or does it simply annoy or not benefit you when the music does not match the cover art at all?

… And when does the cover become more important than the music itself?

Hey all! I decided to introduce a new segment into my daily uploads on here, deeming it a title of “Let’s Talk” where we well, talk. About? I’ve not idea. Whatever comes to my mind first, to be honest. But it’ll mostly all about music and its industry. This week, I figured we could start out with a very opinionated subject in the music world. Music and the importance of cover art.

Often, I sit there wondering with an album and its related cover art, how it reflects the feel and the sound of the album so flawlessly. Obviously, cover art in itself is meant to represent the music behind them, and regardless of the point of playing music in the first place, their involvement is not all that important, but surely some must point you in a general direction, right?

Let’s talk. Let me know if you have a fond passion of cover art to its reflective music …

or if you simply just like the pretty colours they picked.

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Love Story: Why Taylor Swift is a Genius

One of the biggest female artists in this decade, Taylor Swift is the rarity in pop phenomena.

With the ability to cross from country to the music of mainstream, Swift soon become the populist singer/songwriters of our generation. With recent releases, willow, champagne problems and cardigan becoming instant favourites among the fans, it seems that for Taylor, writing love songs is just too an easy trait, impossible to get wrong. And after her record label refused to release her music, she’s bounced back bigger than before.

’tis the damn season: Love and Loss During Lockdown

Ever since her Lover tour was evidently postponed due to the pandemic, Taylor seemed to write and write, hit after hit, til her hands hurt. In what seems to be a new release every week, Taylor Swift has taken to being productive during lockdown like a water off of a ducks’ back. With folklore in 2020, and evermore, that soon followed just less than 5 months thereafter, Swift has been a major artist to not only capitalise on the unexpected time on our hands, but to also earn herself an album that went straight to the top of the Billboard 200. And we’ve got one more re-recording coming, too. Oh, and a documentary, too!

It is the perfect formula for the music industry. Produce melancholy acoustic sweetheart-tales and you’ve got media attention because nothing else is going on, and avid listens from old fans and new, because well,… nothing else is going on. It has undoubtedly been the much-needed medicine for everyone to get through this difficult time, too. And she’s a genius because of it. It certainly makes you wonder as to why more artists haven’t done it, though. With the ability to produce music from the comfort of your bedrooms – with the major artists in the industry actively having recording studios in their own homes, might I add – it is worth noting why no other artists have followed in her footsteps, and produced song after song. Especially when it is so easy for everyone to be in touching distance with listening to music.

It may be Swift’s work ethic, production team or her simple strive for perfection that trumps her above the rest of the major mainstream artists – but, you’ve got to hand it to her. She’s not been waiting for this to just blow over, planning old tours and relying on pay-outs from old records, she’s made three new ones.

And the response has been emphatic. Have you been enjoying this as much as I have?

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The Rise of Powfu: death bed

The rise of “death bed” from unknown and out-of-nowhere artist, Powfu, represents a new model on how songs circulate through the twists and turns of social media, and are churned out of the other side as mega hits. And a multi-platinum single.

With a record deal signing often being the last step, musicians right now are making their own success, their own way. And Powfu is a fine example of that. With the song considered as lo-fi hip hop – a term that usually states unpolished beats and samples from unknown producers – it is not exactly expertly made with musical expertise at the helm. But, the catchy samples (which was sampled from “Coffee” by Beabadoobee), the alluring percussion beats and the mumble of the rapping allows the song to flow and melt within one another, creating a melancholic song – a song that was perfect at the time of its release – when we were amidst a worldwide pandemic.

The song took many meanings and was interpreted by many different people across social media. It peaked when it hit the videos of TikTok. With the song used by many users to confess their love to one another, the song soon became a number one hit, accumulating 800 million streams on Spotify alone.

With its simple production, melancholic sounds and a story where literally everyone can relate to, it amassed a huge following that brought this lo-fi hip hop style in the limelight.

And, many artists soon followed.

Guccihighwaters, Iain dorr, Sarcastic sounds, iamjakehill, Lil revive, Aries, Guardin. They all had the same formula, too. This lo-fi hip hop cup-of-tea melancholic freeform of progressive beats, uncooked samples and incoherent vocals, This was often matched with a name that was neither conjoined throughout or host neither a capital or a name that made sense.

But hey, it’s annoyingly catchy, highly addictive to keep listening and above all else, they’re popular. So why stop?

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Hidden Gems (Week 10)

Welcome back. We’re into the DOUBLE FIGURES, boys and girls. Thanks to those that have shared and supported this series so far, it means a lot. Of course, catch Week 9 below before you embark on your four artists before the weekend.

Near Mrs

… AND YOU’RE LOOKING AT ME LIKE …

With the inability to stand still when listening to their music, Near Mrs are bringing new funky flavours to the world of explosive indie shower sing-a-longs. With a reputable collection behind them already, the five-jive piece from Nottingham are planning on keeping up momentum with their latest, Wishful Thinking. A song that does not deserve just one casual listen, Wishful Thinking gives the boys a compelling and rich return to the world of music, and plants their feet firmly on the ground of competent songwriters. If they make their songs end the way this one does (that final minute is epic), they’ll soon make a habit out of producing such appetising anthems for the future.

San Francisco

If I told you that San Francisco was just a solo project, you’d pack up and run to the The Golden City yourself. Although hailing a little east from San Francisco, originally from the north of England, San Francisco’s ( Iwan Grant) music borders on the line of this charm and charismatic element that would fit so comfortably on the beaches of the Californian city regardless. It is certainly an element that is so void in the alt/indie-rock segments of the industry at the moment. Emphatic, rich and with *those damn catchy hooks*, Grant’s most recent release, (Not) Sentimental provokes the reminiscing thoughts of spending the night with someone so fondly, instead of merely wishing for more. Before he knows it, Grant will soon see his music propel him forwards and solidify his place – rightly so.

Region

Simply chaotic and raucous in cutting-edge rock fashion, three-piece Region are set to return to where they kicked things off with single, idkwhyidkwhere. Not shying away from formalities, the band return with more tact and angst than ever before compared to their eponymous debut single of Irresistible. Dark, electrifying and simply well put together production-wise, you can catch them back to what they’re best at on the 20th. Get ready, because it’ll be here before you know it.

Faith in Casinos

Tinkering on the verge of prog/rock material, empowering 4-piece, Faith in Casinos twist and contort us through a series of impressive and emotive melodies and harmonies that enrich our earbuds ever more so. Deep in the shire of Lincoln, Faith in Casinos are out to set themselves as the standard in progressive rock, and spark up the local scene along the way. Their recent release, Signals is nothing short of a mighty feat. In a world of predicability and familiarity with music, this is simply nothing of the sort with unexpected turns as every minute passes.

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What music are you listening to at the moment?

Let me know …

I am always curious into what other avid fans of music are listening to and see if I can learn some new music along the way. For me, I’ve been recently getting into underground lo-fi hip hop at the moment, as a means to escape the harsh reality of the current world we are living right now. Of course, I have been listening to the usual within the rock world, as well as visiting tropes of funk every now and then. But only when I feel like it, of course. And, as ever, I dive into the classics of rock from Led Zeppelin, Cream to the epics of Clapton.

Artists like Powfu, Man Man, Arlo Parks to Architects, Kings of Leon and Cleopatrick to name but a few.

And with so much time on our hands with more and more artists able to actively release music from the comfort of their own bedrooms, we’ve never had so much new music right now.

Right then my fellow blog readers and avid music fanatics, what music are you listening to?

Let me know in the comments.