My Month in Music – December (2019)

I hope you all have had a good start to your 2020! I am posting my last My Month in Music for 2019 and maybe ever. I have done this for two years (sort of) and I’m just ready to be done…but I can’t fully decide. So we’ll see…On to the playlist!

You can listen to it here 🖤


Thank you for reading! Happy listening ❤

2019 Wrap – Up

As this year is coming to a close, I thought I’d look back on 2019. I did this last year and really enjoyed it, especially because I love reading these posts from other people.

Music:

This year, I decided to start this section off with what I listened to most (according to Apple Music). I listened to 575 hours of music, as of December 30th, which is around 23 days straight of listening to music. (Of course that doesn’t count everything, but still). That’s a lot.

Top 10 Songs of 2019:

  1. Freaks Like Us – Hands Off Gretel
  2. Be Yourself – Audioslave
  3. Misery Chain – Chris Cornell
  4. I Want the World – Hands Off Gretel
  5. Can’t Change Me – Chris Cornell
  6. Nightmare – Halsey
  7. Preaching the End of the World – Chris Cornell
  8. The Last Remaining Light – Audioslave
  9. Superpower – Adam Lambert
  10. S.A.S.S – Hands Off Gretel

This is not surprising…at all.

Top 10 Artists of 2019:

  1. Soundgarden – 67 hours
  2. Chris Cornell – 51 hours
  3. The Lumineers – 36 hours
  4. L7 – 34 hours
  5. Audioslave – 33 hours
  6. U2 – 22 hours
  7. Foo Fighters – 20 hours
  8. Hands Off Gretel – 19 hours
  9. Temple of the Dog – 18 hours
  10. Elton John – 17 hours

…That is a total of 169 hours (or 7 days) spent only listening to Chris Cornell’s voice. Sounds like a good time honestly

Top 10 Albums of 2019:

  1. Echoes of Miles: Scattered Tracks Across the Path – Soundgarden
  2. The Lumineers (Deluxe Edition) – The Lumineers
  3. Euphoria Mourning – Chris Cornell
  4. III – The Lumineers
  5. Higher Truth – Chris Cornell
  6. I Want the World – Hands Off Gretel
  7. Six: The Musical (Studio Cast Recording)
  8. Cleopatra (Deluxe Edition) – The Lumineers
  9. Lungs (Deluxe Edition) – Florence + the Machine
  10. Temple of the Dog – Temple of the Dog

Additionally…

  • I saw L7 play at the Varsity
  • I saw Queen play at the Xcel
  • Hands Off Gretel released I Want the World and it is amazing
  • Adam Lambert released Velvet: Side A and it is amazing
  • I listened to more new music than I usually do…though I clearly still have some favorites…

I posted about what I listened to all of 2019, so check that out if you want!

Books:

Hopefully I’ll read even more good books in 2020!

Life:

  • I posted my own writing on this blog for the first time. (I hope to do more of this, but it’s really scaryyyy)
  • I started my English Major Overanalyzes Song Lyrics posts, which I hope to continue soon!
  • I finished my first year of college and started my second year
  • I saw Daniel Sloss live at the Cedar Cultural Center!
  • I made some new friends!
  • I took my last math class ever!
  • I took some classes I really loved
  • I watched: Queer Eye, Versailles, Mindhunter and finished The Tudors which are all great (and verrrrry different)
  • I saw Six at the Ordway

I hope you all had a great 2019 and good start to 2020! I really like these posts because it’s good to reflect and be proud of all you did in the year, so what are some things you are proud of/were fun in 2019?

Thanks for reading ❤

My Month in Music – November (2019)

This is very likely the worst playlist I have ever made. I might yet again need to re-think the making a playlist thing, because now the songs are so different it just doesn’t work…at all. In previous months, there was so much of one artist it didn’t really work well either. (Maybe I’ll just start putting all the songs on shuffle, since that would be about as good as this playlist is). Anyway…here we go I guess…

You can listen to the playlist here. 🤦🏼‍♀️

Special Mentions:

  • I was given Tiny Meat Gang (a.k.a Cody Ko and Noel Miller) tickets for Christmas 🙂 And I’m going with my friend Valerie in March! Can’t wait to see my favorite Mr. Struggles! (Also she is 100% the Noel of this friendship…I think…we’re having trouble deciding).
  • I also saw Six at the Ordway with my mom over my Thanksgiving break and I absolutely loved it! You should go see it if you can! Here are some pictures of us there 🙂

Thank you for reading this blog post with an absolute shitshow of a playlist ❤

My Month in Music – October (2019)

I hope you all had a great Halloween and October in general! Here is a playlist of what I listened to this past month, I hope you enjoy!

You can listen to the playlist here

Special Mentions:

For Halloween, I was the Live Through This album cover, so I feel like it is fitting to put in this post 🎀


Thank you for reading! ❤

My Month in Music – July/August/September (2019)

So this is verrrrrry long. I would have just skipped July and August, but I had a lot of music to share that is different from what I usually post. Some new songs came out, and I listened to more new music than I typically do (let’s see if we can keep that up, but what can I say? I’m a creature of habit). Because of that, I really wanted to share this playlist. Also, I think this is a particularly well put together playlist, so I wanted to share it. I hope you enjoy it! (If you are able to make it all the way through).

You can listen to the playlist here 🙂


Special Mentions:

I saw Queen and Adam Lambert for the second time in August and they were amazing (obviously). Here are some pictures my friend Timber took:


Thank you for reading! I hope you have a great day ❤

My Month in Music – June (2019)

I hope you are all having a great July so far! Here is some music I listened to last month 🙂

You can listen to the playlist here 🔮


I hope you all have a great July! Happy listening and thanks for reading ❤

My Month in Music – May (2019)

I hope you all had a good May! I finished my first year of college and it’s been very nice not to have homework. I haven’t written down what I’ve been listening to as well since coming home, so I apologize if the playlist is a bit repetitive! Anyway, onto the music 🙂

You can listen to the playlist here 🙂


Special Mentions:

I saw L7 on the 19th and they were amazing! We were standing in the 3rd – ish row and it was a lot of fun!


Thank you for reading! I hope your summer is off to a great start 🙂

Book Review: Our Own Private Universe

Title: Our Own Private Universe

Author: Robin Talley

My Rating: ★★★1/2

Summary: “Fifteen-year-old Aki Simon has a theory. And it’s mostly about sex.

No, it isn’t that kind of theory. Aki already knows she’s bisexual — even if, until now, it’s mostly been in the hypothetical sense. Aki has dated only guys so far, and her best friend, Lori, is the only person who knows she likes girls, too.

Actually, Aki’s theory is that she’s only got one shot at living an interesting life — and that means she’s got to stop sitting around and thinking so much. It’s time for her to actually do something. Or at least try.

So when Aki and Lori set off on a church youth-group trip to a small Mexican town for the summer and Aki meets Christa — slightly older, far more experienced — it seems her theory is prime for the testing.

But it’s not going to be easy. For one thing, how exactly do two girls have sex, anyway? And more important, how can you tell if you’re in love? It’s going to be a summer of testing theories — and the result may just be love.”

My Thoughts:

I wanted something easy and fun to read, so I decided to read a YA contemporary novel. (Also, I realized I hadn’t read any since 2015, so there’s that). I love Robin Talley (please read Lies We Tell Ourselves if you haven’t), so I decided to read this 🙂

One thing I liked about this novel was the friendships. There were interesting dynamics between each friendship, which made it interesting. Also, the relationship in this book is so cute! They’re both young, figuring out their sexuality and what their future holds for them. There’s a lot of unknown things, but that they like each other isn’t one of them.

Another thing Talley does really well is her dialogue is great. It’s very natural and differs with different characters well. Here’s a good example:

“The new guys are going to be incredible,” Lori had whispered to me as we walked to the party with the others.

“They’re going to be exactly the same as the guys we already know,” I whispered back.

“Not true. These guys are way cooler. Much less boring.”

“How could you possibly know that?”

“Look, I’m an optimist, okay?”

p.13

In addition to the same-sex relationship in Our Own Private Universe, Talley included other characters that made this a diverse novel. Aki and her family are black, and it takes place in Mexico, meaning many of the side characters are Mexican. Aki and at least one other character are bisexual, there is an out lesbian character, and one character who is pretty sure they’re pansexual. Very rarely are there books, especially contemporary YA novels this diverse.

There were also some things about this book that were less prominent that I still want to mention. For one, it’s very sex positive, specifically regarding LGBTQ+ people. Talley brings up topics about safe sex and the issues of sex education, which largely only teach about one kind of sex. On a completely different note, all of the sections of this book have Prince song titles as titles. Additionally, there are more references and mentions of Prince throughout, which was fun. There is also a small section with a long conversation about Harry Potter, which made me very happy.

There were some things I didn’t love about Our Own Private Universe, though. For one, while I liked Aki, Lori and Christa (and other characters), I didn’t love any of them. I liked some of the background characters a little better, but overall they were all just fine. There were traits in them all that really bothered me too much to really love them. (Saying exactly what things bother me would spoil a lot, so I can’t be specific). The other main issue I had was with the characters arguing over stupid things and lying to each other. It made some of the conflicts feel catty and unoriginal. (Again, putting specifics would spoil things so I can’t be more specific).

Overall, I think this books like this one are very important as LGBTQ+ relationships are very under represented in books and the YA genre. If you want a fast, cute romance novel this is a good one to choose!


Playlist:

For this playlist, I chose artists and bands that have members in the LGBTQ+ community.

  1. Keep on Livin’ – Le Tigre
  2. Sheer Heart Attack – Queen
  3. Ziggy Stardust – David Bowie
  4. Plum – Troye Sivan
  5. Angel on Fire – Halsey
  6. Re: Anne – Charlie Raphael – Campbell
  7. Love You Old Fashioned – Semler
  8. The Original High – Adam Lambert
  9. Viz – Le Tigre
  10. She Walks on Me – Hole

You can listen to the playlist here 🙂


Thank you for reading!🌈📖

My Month in Music – February (2019)

I can’t believe it’s already March! February went by crazy fast, but I still found the time to listen to some great music! I hope you did too. Here’s what I listened to last month:

You can listen to the playlist here.


Every once in a while, I feel like looking at some Harry Potter stuff and so I go on Tumblr. It always starts with one tag, and I re-immerse myself in my love for Harry Potter. This time it was #remadora and I kid you not, I scrolled through e v e r y post under the Top section. But I mean just look at them!!!

Also sorry (but not really) to my few friends that follow me on Tumblr…oops.

Anyway…this led to me taking a trip down memory lane to my very short-lived obsession with wizard rock (wrock), where I found and rediscovered some great songs (full EP’s and albums, actually). So that’s why there’s a good number of Oliver Boyd and the Remebralls’ songs on this playlist. I felt like I needed to point it out, since it’s sort of different from everything else on the playlist. (You know because I usually listen to music that isn’t about Harry Potter).

Special Mentions:

Here are the wrock songs I remember from middle school the most clearly. Obviously, two of these are a bit more Sirius than the other one. (I tried so hard not to make that pun, but I just couldn’t resist the urge).

At the Oscar’s this year, Queen and Adam Lambert opened, and as per usual, they were amazing. I think everyone needs to see it, so…

One more thing! I know the Super Bowl was a while ago now, but I still wanted to show a few performances from the Foo Fighter’s Super Saturday Night concert. As per usual, they killed it. No surprises there. Here are two great performances by my favorite Dad Band™️:


Thanks for reading! ❤ ⚡️

Book Review: The Merciless 4

IMG_2814
Found on Google Images

Title: The Merciless 4: Last Rites

Author: Danielle Vega

My Rating: ★★★★

Summary: “The ropes tighten on Berkley Hubbard’s wrists. Blood drips down her fingers and lands with a smack on the cold floor of the church basement. She’s trapped, bound, and petrified by fear. A knife punctures her fragile skin as Berkley’s captors search for the mark of the devil on her body. They say they want to save her–drive the devil away and cleanse her soul–but the cuts are deep, the pain is agonizing.

When Berkley arrived in Italy a week ago, she never expected to be fighting for her life. After spending six months at the Institute, confined to a room with the dangerous-yet-alluring Sofia Flores, Berkley was certain that a vacation in Italy with her two best friends would be the perfect getaway.

But Berkley is hiding a terrible secret, one that threatens to upend her life all over again. As she’s forced to face her wicked past, she learns that the devil is always watching, and no one is coming to save her.”

My Thoughts:

Here are the links to my reviews for the other books in the series:

  1. The Merciless
  2. The Merciless 2: The Exorcism of Sofia Flores
  3. The Merciless 3: Origins of Evil

Onto the review!

I was pulled into this book right from the start. It starts with Berkley counting down how much longer she has to spend in the mental institution she’s in. It was intriguing to start with a totally new character, but see an old character, Sofia, in a new setting. Vega does a good job of describing the setting early on, which makes the institution come to life. Something else that is cool about The Merciless 4 is the way it’s written. It jumps between Berkley in the institution and in Italy, which allows the book to move along quickly in both plots.

Speaking of the plot, like I said with The Merciless 3, the plot is better built than the first two. It is more interesting and feels like there is a plot outside of the gore. The friendships (while not as developed as in the third book) are fairly interesting. Berkley and Sofia’s relationship changed over time and was fun to see develop. The readers know more about Sofia than Berkley does, which is a cool dynamic for a book like this. One thing I noticed in the first and last book of the series is the shitty friends. Sofia and Berkley both make friends with horrible people! I’ve had toxic friendships before, but (not even including the gory stuff) they are on another level of terrible people. I don’t understand how they really thought those people were their best friends??!

This isn’t important, but Berkley, Mara and Harper all get into NYU and are super chill about it?! That is a hard college to get into and they all seemed like it wasn’t that hard to get into or something? (I just checked and their acceptance rate is less than 20% this year).

giphy

Something I didn’t love about The Merciless 4 was the setting. This series is supposed to be set in the present, but most mental institutions like the one Vega described have been shut down. Vega described a One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest situation, but those have been shut down with good reason. (Examples of why can be seen in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest).

Additionally, the fact that everyone inside the institution is supposed to be crazy is a little bit of a problem for me. I understand that this is a horror novel and so that works with the plot, but regardless, authors need to be careful with their portrayal of mental illnesses. Sofia is crazy and that’s fine. She’s evil and murdered someone, so her being insane is part of the plot. (She’s not even necessarily human, because she’s possessed by the devil). Berkley tries to say she’s different, that everyone else is crazy, but in reality, they are probably in similar situations to her or have mental illnesses. To portray everyone as crazy when they aren’t supposed to be crazy or evil like Sofia is a little problematic.

As I have said with every book in the series, Vega’s descriptions are what really makes the books so good. There were a few lines I almost didn’t want to read because they were gross. But so good. For example…

“Blood runs down my arms and legs in ribbons.”

Lastly, the ending to this book was perfect! It completed the series in a very satisfying way, which is hard to do. I definitely enjoyed this series a lot, though it had some pretty major faults.


Playlist:

Every time I make a playlist for a Merciless book, they get less and less cohesive as I try to use different songs (and end up with many of the same ones). But here goes…

  1. Evil In the Night – Adam Lambert
  2. No Wrong No Right – Soundgarden
  3. Broomstick – L7
  4. Eating Simon – Hands Off Gretel
  5. Voodoo – Adam Lambert
  6. Enter Sandman – Metallica
  7. Devil in Me – Halsey
  8. Ghost – Michael Jackson
  9. Gasoline – Halsey
  10. Basket Case – Green Day (with the music video, this seems very fitting)

You can listen to the whole playlist here.


Thank you for reading! 🖤☠️🔪