The One Thing Love Island 2018 Is Missing

As per last year’s surprise smash-hit of a series, Love Island 2018 seems to have all the perfect ingredients for a cultural phenomenon – sunny Spanish weather, check. Enviable villa, check. Free clothes courtesy of Missguided, check. Witty Scottish voiceover, check. Major drama, check (looking at you, Adam/Eyal!). The one thing it’s missing is inclusivity, and sadly this is, in the increasingly body positive era that is 2018, a pretty vital ingredient to be missing.

All of the contestants are beautiful, thin, clearly spend a lot of time at the gym and quite possibly spend a chunk of money on beauty-related enhancements that us ‘normal’ viewers would rather spend on clothes and food. None of them are ‘plus size’ and they could all be models – as I’m sure a lot of them will become when their time on the island comes to an end – which just seems outdated and, at least to me, a real shame. 2018 has become a year of major social change and increasing inclusivity – from Me Too and Time’s Up to brand after brand – including Missguided – showcasing more ‘real world’ models and giving up airbrushing their websites. So, in the face of this growing wave of change in the fashion and beauty industries, I struggle to understand why ITV haven’t included a more diverse range of body shapes in their contestants – judging from the number of negative comments on Twitter regarding the lack of inclusivity and inability to see your own body shape on Love Island, it seems the audience wouldn’t have complained.

I believe one reason Love Island has been so successful because its the best form of escapism there is – it involves sun, Spain and the prospect of falling in love, a pretty much universal experience and therefore one that helps the audience relate to the cast. But as long as the contestants remain entirely stick thin and impossibly attractive, its relatability will be limited and so will the show’s lifespan. Hopefully, in time ITV will see the public wish for a more diverse cast, and will accommodate this with latecomers to the island – after all, the 85,000 applicants for the show can’t all look the same! Judging from the preview on last night’s episode of the new entrants to the villa though, I don’t hold out much hope…

What are your thoughts on Love Island 2018?


the album I never thought I’d be writing a blog post about

I’ve had a few ideas for blog posts tumbling around in my head lately, and although this wasn’t the first one I came up with – that was some top tips for doing the IB, but given my current stress level it may be best to leave that until after my exams – this album has been on repeat in my head for the last few days and is a completely unexpected new favourite of mine. Partly unexpected because its very, very rare for me to listen to a full album (even more so for me to like everything on it) and partly because…well, it’s Harry Styles, of One Direction fame. I never loved One Direction – though equally I didn’t understand the depths with which some people hated them – and didn’t pay much attention to any of their debut stuff when it first came up. A couple of their solo singles made it onto my Spotify playlists, but I made no effort to go and listen to full albums or anything.

This began to change the other week, when I rewatched Dunkirk with some friends and remembered Harry Styles’ existence. In true procrastinating student fashion I then ended up watching his Carpool Karaoke with James Corden, which is pretty great (highlights include their rendition of Hey Ya! and recreation of Titanic). After watching that I ended up listening to all of his album and, completely unexpectedly, I loved it. It’s been in my head so much the last few days that I figured I’d write a blog post about it, breaking it down into each track and my thoughts, in the hope it’ll finally get it out of my head…

Meet Me in the Hallway

This is quite a chilled, laidback start to the album and wasn’t a track I particularly paid attention to start with but, though it’s not one of my favourites, has grown on me a lot. It’s easy to listen to and relaxing and I love the chorus – I think it does a really good job of livening the track up a bit without losing the dreamy feeling of the rest of it. It also opens up the album immediately showing that this is not going to be a One Direction clone, which is nice.

Sign of the Times

This song is probably what actually stopped me from bothering to look into his music before because I was profoundly unbothered by it when it first came out as his debut single. It was OK, a bit different from One Direction but nothing drastic. Listening to it now I definitely like it more than I did then but it’s probably one of my least favourites on the album. The dramatic strings from 1:33 onwards get a shoutout though, and I discovered that it is actually him being suspended from a helicopter in the music video, not a stunt double, which is pretty incredible.


Carolina’s the third track on the album and from its opening notes its showing a different side to ‘solo Harry’ – a bit funkier, a bit livelier, a bit less restrained. The opening riff’s the kinda thing you can’t listen to without letting your head bop along (bop is a fantastic verb and this song is very deserving of its use) and as the layers start to build it just gets funkier (I especially love the little ‘oh yeah’s). The vocals start off pretty laidback but quickly ramp up at the chorus, giving it more of a rock-y vibe than the first few tracks. Then the brilliant ‘la la las’ start up, giving the song a really fun vibe – Harry said in an interview that this was the last song written for the album and gave it a kinda missing piece of fun, which is definitely how it feels. The layers keep building up and, in my entirely objective opinion, the song just gets better and better – it definitely cheers me up in the middle of revision, anyway! Also, love the guitar on this.

Two Ghosts

If you’ve heard of this song, you likely know it as ‘the one about Taylor Swift’. This is another one I really like, and I can personally really relate to the lyrics. Musically, the little guitar riff throughout is beautiful, and the return to the more laidback vibe provides a really nice contrast to Carolina. I’d definitely say it’s more pop-y, more along the lines of some of One Direction’s stuff, but that’s absolutely not a bad thing.

Sweet Creature

Sweet Creature‘s another more chilled one, but a little more folk-y? (I’m not very good at identifying musical genres so feel free to tell me there is absolutely nothing folk-like about it at all haha) It’s similar-ish to Two Ghosts and just a really nice, laidback song for a Sunday evening, and I especially like all the backing vocal bits around 2:30.

Only Angel

So the opening to this track is pretty misleading about the overall vibe of it, as it quickly changes into being much more rock-like. This is one that kinda escaped my notice at first, but now I absolutely love it – it’s great for yelling along to in the kitchen while baking cookies (absolutely not that I was doing that ten minutes ago…). It’s veryyyy different to One Direction and more along the lines of Carolina, once again with great backing vocals and clapping bits, and the little instrumental bit around 3:15 is one of my favourite things in the world right now.


This is one of my absolute favourite songs at the moment, and it’s the most non-One-Direction like one on the album – Harry said himself that it started out as a joke but ended up as one of his favourite songs, which kinda explains the lyrics a bit! Similarly to Only Angel it’s great for just yelling along to (very handy stress reliever for a currently very stressed student with exams in three days) and has kinda become my personal hype song? I don’t know how either, but I’m not disappointed. For the optimum first listening experience, I recommend playing it as loud as you can. Side note – I really love the bridge.

Ever Since New York

I wouldn’t say this is one of the stand-out memorable tracks on the album, but its got a lot of good stuff going on (even if the very opening does remind me of the music they use at the start of lots of programmes about schools on TV – just me?!) It’s apparently thought to be about his stepdad’s cancer diagnosis which adds a whole different level of poignancy to the lyrics – my favourite is probably ‘There’s no water in this swimming pool’ (I always love a good water metaphor). It’s obviously quite a sad song, but in a way that feels chilled out rather than full-on make-you-cry, which is nice.


Woman perks the album up a bit again, going back to the heavier sound of Only Angel and Kiwi, but a bit more chilled out. It starts with a nice bit of piano and guitar, soon followed by some duck-style sound effects (don’t sound as bad as you think they would). Yeah, not sure what else to say except I like it…

From The Dining Table

First things first – I LOVE the opening guitar motif. I know I’ve said that about basically every track on the album but its all true, okay?!? This is definitely one of my favourites, and like Two Ghosts, I can really relate to the theme of the song. This is definitely not one to cheer you up, but its the kinda song that makes me really think and gets me in the feels, as the ~youth~ say. I also love the change in melody around ‘maybe one day you’ll call me and tell me that you’re sorry too’ – there’s just something about it that I really love, as well as the poignancy with ‘but you, you never do’. I just think the whole song does a really good job of capturing heartbreak without trivialising it or being clichéd.

A Few Final Notes (Musical Pun Absolutely Intended, sorrynotsorry)

I feel like you can split this album fairly easily into ‘chilled out, a bit sad’ and ‘jump around and sing along’, though somehow it still manages to feel pretty cohesive. I just really like it to be honest, hence the fact its got a whole blog post to itself, especially as I never thought I’d be such a Harry Styles fan. I’m also impressed by how true to thestudio versions all his live versions sound – I never realised he could actually sing so well. I also now firmly believe pretty much everything he sings ends up golden – see his cover of Fleetwood Mac’s The Chain, Rihanna’s Wild Thoughts (which I don’t even like the original of) and One Direction’s Stockholm Syndrome for proof…

What are your thoughts on Harry Styles’ solo music?

Lauren Aquilina – Isn’t It Strange (collab review)


You might remember that wayyy back in May, the fantastically awesome Eve @ Twist In The Taile and I did a collaborative review of Lauren Aquilina’s Ocean EP and various other newish music she released, in preparation for her ~debut album~ release. And now, finally, (or as of August 25th anyway) her album is out, so of course mega fangirls Eve and I decided we should (virtually) get together again and review it. Amazingly, we managed to flail over the whole 10-track album in just one hour (our fangirling must be getting much more productive/we barely had to listen to the tracks because we knew them so well already) and produced these incredibly concise and well written reviews (jk they’re inarticulate badly punctuated fangirling word vomit I’ve made slightly more coherent but at least it’s REALISTIC (or that’s what I keep telling myself)). Anyway, here are our thoughts, track by track…


Midnight Mouths

I wasn’t really that keen on this the first time I heard it, but I definitely think its grown on me. I really like how the texture thickens before the first chorus, it feels like it makes it more powerful and I also quite like the new-era Aquilina electronicy vibe. Also, likemost of her songs, the lyricism is amazing…especially ‘it’s just the lonely talking’, and ‘We’re in too deep, so let go of my hand”.

Eve:I wasn’t as keen on this on on my first listen — like, when they were released earlier? I think I was feeling a bit negative about all the electronic production compared to Lauren;s old stuff. BUT BUT BUT now I do really enjoy this one, especially the chorus! It’s VERY catchy. And I also love the whole ‘midnight mouths’ and the aesthetic of it haha.

Wicked Game

This feels like a different, more adult Lauren, more mysterious and and dramatic, especially because, as Eve put it, of the contrast between the darker lyrics and the more dance-y production style, and also the pitch of her voice is much lower than a lot of her others songs. I also really like the contrast between the lower pitched verses and then the higher choruses. Eve and I also both thought the lyrics were specific-but-vague-and-extremely-relatable at the same time…they apply both to the specific situation she’s writing about, but also to a lot of wider aspects of life, like ‘nobody ever taught me to play this wicked game’ kinda reminded me of how much of life you’re just expected to know how to navigate alone It feels like you can apply it to almost anything which is one of the best things for you to be able to do with music. Also, side note, I seriously love the lines ‘He said he didn’t do commitment/With tattoos on his skin/Maybe I wasn’t worth the pain’ and ‘
I’ve been thinking about death/But I’ll hold my breath’.

EveI absolutely ADORE this one honestly, and I do feel like this is a more grown-up song on this album. But asdfjkl the lyrics are so wonderful (‘I’ve been thinking about death but I’ll hold my breath’ arghh). SPOOKY.  Basically the high notes on the chorus just give me the chills every time. man I do just really love this song eek.


I love this song so much, ever since I first heard it, and the lyrics are just OMG AMAZING. ALSO KICKS = KICKING ME AROUND = PUNS/WORDPLAY = LOVE. (*pause for Eve and I to flail about amazing wordplay*). Plus yay for positivity, especially ‘I’m done being down about this’…and I also like the more modern-y electronicy-ness. Overall this song feels more mature, and the message feels less naive than some of the old-era Aquilina songs.

Eve:  I love how the production feels, like…really seamless? And YAY for positive songs! Like the claps and the little electronic-y riff thing are so awesome.  I feel like a bunch of songs on here seem older? Not, like, OLDER. But I guess more mature haha. There are loads of different (relationship, song, whatever) dynamics. Lots of different situations and messages and stuff. *nods*


How Would You Like It?

I love this song so much! It’s more stripped-back and that makes it a nice contrast to the rest of the album and lets the emotion really shine through…it feels very raw and powerful and again, even if not in this context/situation i feel like the whole ‘how would you like it’ message is very relatable and applicable in a number of contexts, which I really like.

Eve: Also gives me the chills. This is one I loved from first listen, I think — although it’s only improved with listening. WOW SO MUCH EMOTION. So much lyrics. And I think the more stripped production works well here. (*is feeling so many things as I listen to chorus woah*) . I also…find myself singing this a lot? Yeah. And THE BRIDGE IS SO WONDERFUL.


Way Too Good

Okay I absolutely LOVE this song (such sad times when my boyfriend said it sounded like a ‘crappy christmas song’ like oi no this song is a masterpiece. The lyrics are so good and the stripped-down-ness really works well but for me the main thing about this song is the lyrics. I especially like  ‘If nothing is meant to last maybe we should drink to that’. I can totally relate to the feeling that everythings too good and something’s going to go wrong. 

Eve: Okay, this one is ALSO one of my favourites. (I think I’ve said this way too many times but I do adore this.) I looove the kinda humming bit at the start?? Idk what that is but yeah. And I love the ‘I am, I am’ and ‘I know, I know’ bits. And THE CHORUS. All the background things. I love the aesthetic of it like ?? idk it feels so classy to me.I like the whole vibe of kinda…being in the moment? (This is a terrible description. But yes.) And the kinda overlays of her voice on the last chorus are stunning. [insert heart eye emoji] 

Hurt Any Less

The start is so good! A real contrast to the last one but it works really well, then the slowing down at the chorus and yes again the contrast between tempo and melody and lyrics. I also just love the melody of ‘why did you have to let me let you in’. Yep it’s amazing and I also like that it *feels* happy even though it def isn’t, kinda bittersweet, as Eve put it.

Eve: This one…also SO GOOD. *cries* (way too good even) (ha) (anyway) I also really enjoy listening to the pre-chorus bit? Like, I LOVE THAT. ‘this was never love it was chaos’ is such a fabulous line. And yep, the contrast between the tempo of chorus and the rest is so wonderful, works very effectively. I also feel like ‘I gave everything expecting nothing’ is a bit of a theme across some of the songs? (Idk, i feel like there was a similar line somewhere haha.) YES overall honestly this is also absolutely stellar a+.


Fools – Live at RAK Studios

I read somewhere that she rerecorded Fools because her voice has changed and I also agree with something else she said, about the way she sings it now is more serious and less naive because she knows how the relationship ends. Also can we please have a round of applause that she wrote this aged 16?!?! (how can she do this, GCSE music composition was hard enough!!!) Also, it’s very stripped back and bare, maybe because it’s live? Also, because this was one of the first songs she ever released, it feels like quite an important one in her career so it’s nice to have that on the album.

Eve:  I like that this one feels less hurried, too — a little more reflective. Maybe that’s the lack of drums & like less piano and stuff?  (also wow live honestly wow) I quite like having Fools on the album in some ways bc it feels like a sorta…full circle? And as well with that line at the end of Broke. ‘Those hardest to love need it most’ is still SUCH a powerful line tbh. The new piano stuff is rad as well yep. (idk if it’s like new but I think it’s a bit louder & different? Yes anyway wonderful)

Suddenly Strangers

Ahh this is just WAY TOO GOOD (wink wink nudge nudge). One reason I really love this song  is because just before the album announcement she put on facebook etc a thing about how people can go from so close to completely separate so fast…I also love the ‘isn’t it strange’ line. And ‘from talking every waking hour to not knowing where you are now’ line…and it also feels very relatable because of the fear of how a relationship is going to eventually end. 


Eve: Ah love the start to this, feels a bit water-y idk. It works v well as the album title too, and once again with the specific/relatable thing — I mean I relate to this a lot  Suddenly Strangers is also such a fab line on its own, tbh. (sibilance! knowledge!) I also liked the combination of slightly electronic but also minimal production? (If that makes sense. The whole thing just feels very smooth to me.) Just hearing a little drum beat thing-y in the pre-chorus and IT IS VERY NICE. also the drum beat on the chorus is pretty nice *nods* 

Thinking About

This feels very pared down, there aren’t many lines or backing but it still feels quite powerful…side note is it me or has the album got more pared down and simplistic and almost darker the further down the tracklist you go? It’s like it follows a relationship’s journey or something, and at the end it’s like the problems are more serious & unavoidable. Overall, I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite song  but “all i’m thinking about is not thinking about you” is one of my fave lines on the album i think. 

Eve: I was so excited to listen to this one because I remember I watched a youtube clip of her performing this live a while ago? And all the time I was waiting for the album I remembered the lyric ‘all I’m thinking about is not thinking about you’ haha. I feel like it gets more…like, serious and reflective? Bc wicked games & midnight mouths ARE the slightly more kinda tunes with more instruments & dance-y production. But also there are some quite dark lyrics throughout the whole album tbh. But I like that it does seem to follow a slightly linear thing…? OKAY just listening to that awesome piano bridge bit thing and WOW. Again getting slightly water-y vibes. The one piano note that gets played is also very cool…? And the verse has such like argh idk it just seems like a great start to the song for me. Mm yes I don’t think it’s one of my absolute favourites overall but definitely another strong song (and reminds me a little more of like kinda liars-y production? Idk yeah with all those floaty piano things and stuff.) 


Eve: This is SUCH a great ending tbh. (& sure! Maybe we can touch a little more on like general stuff as well, haha we discussed it a bit above but. Let me know when you have to go!) Yeah so I think this is a great ending, I love the kinda catharsis & freedom of it. It feels a lot more abstract than the others & I think it’s good contrast…? (<— I 100% agree with all of this)

Overall Thoughts

I definitely think it was an album worth waiting for, you can tell its not the first collection of songs she’s released and i really like it. It’s honestly amazing in my humble opinion. 10/10 methinks.

Eve: One random thing I noticed about the whole album in general is that there are a lot more like specific third person pronouns used? I mean, not a LOT more. But there’s also like more than just ‘you’ n stuff which I found interesting. I feel like lyrically it’s less abstract; like still absolutely stunning lyrics but more cutting to the point and less vague imagery if you get me…? Honestly…tbh I adore every song on this. I think I do enjoy it more than the Ocean EP? Although Echoes was fab. 10/10 one of my fav recent albums i will be dying over this forever.

And there you have it, a track-by-track, vaguely incoherent review/fangirl session of Lauren Aquilina’s debut album, Midnight Mouths!

Have you heard the album? What were your thoughts, and which tracks do you especially like?

– n.b. all images via Lauren’s Facebook/Instagram accounts

Welcoming In The New Era Of Aquilina {collab review}


A couple of weeks ago, the lovely Eve (who blogs over at Twist In The Taile and is a fellow Lauren Aquilina fangirl, yay) and I got together (well, opened a shared Google Doc) to discuss/flail over newish Lauren Aquilina songs in the name of reviewing them. Yay. We both love Lauren’s old and new stuff (or as we christened them, Old Aquilina and New Aquilina) and so just listening to her music and talking about it together was basically a dream come true. Our fangirling skills were so great that they even extended to technology (“*FLAILS* *REALISES IS FANGIRLING OVER COMPUTER* *REALISES FORGOT TO TAKE CAPS LOCK OFF*” is just one example).

 And now, amazingly not even that much later given how distracted we got by her other, non-sufficiently-new songs and thinking up questions for her Kicks Twitter Q&A and then flailing wildly when she replied, here are the results of our many hours of hard fangirling…


OK, first up was Ocean, which was released way back in October last year. Here are our thoughts on the video…(I’m just gonna copy and paste this pretty much direct so you can get the full effect so sorry if it’s a lil’ jumbled up…)

ME: So…at first i was like wut is this where is she it looks like the blinds are moving but THEN I was like “yass dem cgi skills though” and I LOVED LOVED LOVED the bit when right at the same time as like loads more instruments come in a massive wave comes in (1:51 if you’re interested). YASS THAT TIMING! Also, as usual, I have a massive style crush on her hair. But yeah, generally kinda ethereal vibes and I like the ocean reflection in the mirror near the end. It’s also nice that it links to the lyrics but gives you space to appreciate the song.

EVE: a+ ocean aesthetic. (aah okay wait excitement about fools SAME I just literally love all her songs so much????)  I mean, mostly Lauren’s videos don’t have like massive stories? BUT I LIKE IT LETS ME FOCUS ON THE SONG. And I like the ocean layering, although at the start I thought it was just terrible graphic effects. Like, trying to actually look like they were filling the room with water.

And now song thoughts…

EVE: At first I was a bit worried about WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO LAUREN?? Electronic wow? And I thought it was a bit repetitive. But NOW. Well. *coughs* I loove Ocean; it’s one of my favs! It’s a different style to her old music for sure — like, there’s less of a clearly defined structure I feel? But OCEAN IMAGERY and ‘i lost my head/somewhere between teh surface and the seabed’ eep. It’s super catchy aah.

ME: OK i have a tiny confession…at first I didn’t like this song. Like I listened to it a couple of times then kinda forgot about it because I wasn’t that keen on it. Like you said, it’s very different to her other stuff. BUT NOW, after listening to it again, I like it! JUST LIKE YOU SAID I love “i lost my head somewhere between the surface and the seabed” and also “they call it freedom but how can it be when I live in a time zone unsuited to me”. I feel kinda attached to that lyric because I think she shared it before the whole song??

Anyway I also really like how it kinda starts bare and then the texture builds up and then fades out again? (sorry that’s like classic GCSE music stuff ahaha) but YES NOW I LIKE IT!

EVE: Ah yes that is an excellent point! And one more thing from me ahaha: like I feel like it’s more abstract than such a clear storyline? But yeah more an emotion of the song idek what I’m trying to say haha. And YES  like it

Our rating: 4/5 (but A* for awesome metaphorical lyrics)

Low (also released October 2015)

EVE: Um, I sort of…didn’t like Low AT ALL when I first heard it. It’s probably still my least favourite of like the New Aquilina songs? I just didn’t really like the production that much haha. But, having said that: STILL MEANS I LIKE IT BECAUSE Y’KNOW IT’S COOL And the lyrics are amaazing.I think I agree the video was a bit abstract tho. (Although one take woah.) YES that is a great line eep.

ME: Asdfghjjkl i forgot how much i love this song i haven’t listened to it in too long…I LOVE the like double vocals? Idk what to call it but they’re awesome.Video wise I like that it’s simple and one take and it *kinda* fits with the lyrics but not that much? It’s maybe a bit too abstract though?

Our rating: 4/5

Out Of Our Depth (released in, you guessed it, October 2o15)

ME: OK writing as i think i like the is it guitar? Different instrumentation anyway…I like the chorus but feel like its maybe a bit anticlimactic?  I also like that this is about a relationship but feels like it could also be applied to other stuff (same with kicks tbh).

EVE: I actually love this one so much! I mean it’s not like a ‘main’ single but asdfjkl I think it’s gorgeous okay I need to stop with the superlatives for a bit. OKAY but yeah I think it is less of a big chorus? Hmm I don’t know I do like it though. And yeah, the lyrics are awesome + I think there are a lot of interpretations! I particularly like the kinda echoey piano thing?? Idk what instrument it actually is but yeah. And the drums at the chorus mmm EXCELLENT (oh yes I see what you mean by the guitar! I AM HEARING THAT.) yeah I think that’s it — this is probably like…more of a favourite for me? I mean, I’m saying that but realising I don’t actually know how I’d rate them in terms of fav-> least fav.

Our rating: 4.5/5

Echoes (released December 2015)

(first off we just fangirled excitedly over the bit at the start)




I LOVE THAT SO MUCH (*switches onto caps lock*) & I love how it continues throughout + slightly changes!

And then the rest…

Argh I do love echoes soo much. Probably the song I had the best first impression of + then continued to love! Overall I just love echoes a LOT and I think it’s v strong asdfjkl (although like it is upbeat and it took me a while to realise the lyrics haha) same basically haha. I mean I think some songs rely more on lyrics + some on melody? I think Old Aquilina was maybe more lyrics based but I am loving the new era if it’s like echoes asdfjkl.

5/5??? I literally can’t find any faults ahaha i haven’t even thought that much about the lyrics…I think new era is kinda more abstract and metaphorical lyrics?? 

Our rating: 5/5

And then the Tate x Elle session:

I just love that its at the Tate and this version seems to be more focus on the vocals?? I like it it feels kinda calmer…and I love the aesthetics. 

Ooh this version has more audible piano. Yeah I think so too, it’s lovely to hear vocals live. And I feel like maybe less of the ‘background’ vocals if you get me? Very fitting with the black + white Tate aesthetic is what I’m getting haha.

Echoes {Edeema remix}

My thoughts: loving the instrument at the beginning. I mean, it slightly makes me laugh but yeah. & also I like how there isn’t as a much of a buildup to the chorus I guess? It’s just a bit more chill + relaxed. I do kinda miss the little electronic-y bit at the start? But it’s DIFFERENT and COOL. and yeah overall an excellent remix.

I love this, I love the slightly different instrumentation and generally the laid back vibe. I just love it! Yeah I feel like the instrument thing at the start is kinda a nod to that but you’re right, it’s not the same!

Kicks (released April 2016)

[after watching video] *flails* I FEEL SO PUMPED NOW. yesss upbeat video and awesome song. Kicks is definitely more pop-y & the lyrics are less kinda…lyrical ahaha from old aquilina but IT’S POP PERFECTION. Arghhh amazingness. I liked it less on first try (haha sorry I’m just rambling here) but like NOW YAY & THE VIDEOOOOOO

Okay right I love this! YES THE VIDEO IS GREAT and I love that she included fans, only thing is I can see why she made it all girls but idk it feels maybe a little bit unfair to boys,. Makes it less relatable? But i do get that she’s going for the female empowerment thing…also the Asian girl with the plaits is like ultimate hair goals. Yeah this feels really different to all her other music, way more poppy and upbeat…in terms of lyrics i get what you mean but i do love the line i’m done being down about this…positivity yeah!

Idk yeah that was basically my thing. But I guess it’s a girl power message? Oh my god yeah. AMAZING PLAITS. She was very awesome. Yeah there are some awesome lyrics! It’s just like more succinct rather than poetic I suppose?

Yeah I also like the opening instrumental bit but i wasn’t so sure about the slow bit to start with, I think because all the teasers focused on the upbeat chorussy bit?? But overall me gusta mucho, including the vid and album artwork! And i like (this sounds so geeky omg) the perfect videography (idek if that’s the right word) with the timing of some of the punches haha. And I just realised this is one of the first songs that doesn’t have ocean-y artwork! Yep I feel like this is a hint for how some of her new style stuff is gonna be…

I…can’t actually remember if I listened to the teasers? I think I might have got 1 but I don’t have snapchat haha. YES THE ALBUM ARTWORK IS AWEESOME I’m loving the transition from usual kinda face + name + song title ugh helvetica-y fonts yess. & agreed the timing of some of those shots were great!! Oh that’s true — a lot of her previous kinda header singles have had very oceany stuff as well. Overall I think it’s definitely a transition + more upbeat, but it’s an AWESOME upbeat empowerment song.

Our rating: 4.5 or 5/5 with the video

And so I guess that’s it! Big thanks to Eve for joining me for this, it was so much fun 🙂 – you can read her review on her blog here!

Are you a Lauren Aquilina fan? What are your thoughts on our thoughts? Let us know in the comments!


How To Get A Food Baby In 5 Easy Steps

In short:

  1. Get some friends
  2. Go to Byron Burgers
  3. Eat a bit 
  4. Then a bit more
  5. And then a little bit more

Ta-da! You have now accomplished your goal! Enjoy your new, more fulfilled life with your food baby 👶🏻🍔 🙂 

Sounds easy, right? (Now you expect me to say no it’s actually really hard but it is really very easy)

I’m very proud to announce that for the first time in, err, well at least since Nando’s last weekend, I became the proud owner? Mother? Guardian? Of a food baby. Woop, my favourite.

Yep, that’s right, I went to Byron (for the first ever time, may I add) for my best friend’s birthday and yay it was fun. (Yes I have made an entire post out of eating I feel like I’m finally starting to show the real me on here)

Anyway, it was fun. There was a lot of food, presents, birthday cards with long and in places abusive messages (mine covered a decent chunk of both sides of the card…I don’t know if that says something about how close our friendship is or how *special* it is…) and quite a bit of immaturity (see: my friend asking the young, male waiter “can I have a spoon please…”.

But back to the more important matters…food! Between us, we shared tortilla chips, nachos and olives for starters and they were all so good. I mean, even the olives were OK and I don’t normally like olives, I just always make myself try them, I guess to see if my tastebuds have matured at all since I last had one. So yeah, I only had one, but I liked it more than olives normally. Then I went for the Byron burger but without the sauce (so beef, cheese, iceberg lettuce, red onion, tomato and bacon) and omg it was so good. Especially with skin-on chips. 100% would recommend. 

Then it was dessert. Byron have a small but delicious selection…Oreo cheesecake, chocolate brownie, banoffee mess, honeycomb and caramel sundae and ice cream were I think all the options. I went for the banoffee mess which was incredible (banana/caramel/vanilla ice cream/biscuits/cream 😍 WELL PLAYED BYRON 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻) and my friend had the brownie, which looked insane, and the tiny bit of  my friend’s cheesecake I had was good too. Oh, and the cloudy lemonade was…very lemony, but good. 

And that’s about it. Although this post may sound sponsored, I swear it’s not. Though if you’re reading this, Byron, I’m never going to object to free food…

Do you like/dislike Byron?? Any thoughts on this post? Let me know in the comments below! 🙂

The Best Night Of My Life: Kygo @ Brixton O2 Academy

(apologies in advance if this post involves some incomprehensible squealing/fangirling, I’m currently slightly chocolate drunk and possibly sleep deprived so yay)

Last night I saw Kygo at the Brixton O2 Academy with one of my best friends and omg IT WAS INCREDIBLE. I’ve not entirely decided, but I think it might’ve been the best gig I’ve been to and maybe possibly even the best night of my whole life (so far). Like, I can’t think of anything to top it except maybe Bastille at Boardmasters last year and it might even *gulp* have been better than that (that’s high praise indeed, coming from me).

It was pretty awesome.

I left school early on the Friday afternoon (meh, who needs chemistry tests and CCF #priorities) to drive up to London, get checked into the Hammersmith Premier Inn we stayed at (side note: the breakfast was amazing and the guy from Kashmir at the Polish supermarket over the road was really nice) and then catch the Tube to the O2.

I can’t remember what order he played songs in or anything (except he opened with his remix of Younger by Seinabo Sey and closed with an acoustic version + a little bit of the normal version of Firestone) but he managed to play a ridiculous amount in the roughly hour and a half he was on, especially considering the length of some of his songs. I don’t know if it was because there wasn’t a lot of interaction with the audience (there was a little, but he mostly left that for the guests he had) or if he just managed to bend time somehow but he played so much, it was brilliant. It wasn’t just his singles either, he played a load of the remixes of his you can’t buy, like No Diggity, and some unreleased stuff off his album, eek. From what I can remember, he played Stole The Show (with Parson James as a guest), Coming Over (with James Hersey as a guest playing guitar), Raging (with Kodaline), Stay (with Maty Noyes), Firestone (with some random girl – I think Anna of the North, one of his support acts?), his remixes of Miami 82, No Diggity vs. Thrift Shop, Often, I See Fire and Sexual Healing, and Nothing Left, I’m In Love, Carry Me, Oasis and some weird-but-good Happy Birthday thing that he did with John Legend for his album.

I think my favourites were No Diggity, Raging and Stole The Show, partly because I just love all of those songs (and Raging continually gets stuck in my head – when it came on the radio on the way home my friend and I accidentally screamed/squealed out loud) and also Parson James was really good as a guest for the latter, he just had really great stage presence. I also loved that we all got those automated flashing wristbands (with the Kygo logo woop), and there were fireworks, fire, confetti, and giant inflatable beach ball things. Plus the graphics were SO GOOD. IT WAS ALL JUST SO GOOD. AND WE WERE IN THE SECOND ROW. I REPEAT, SECOND ROW, DESPITE GETTING THERE RELATIVELY LATE, ABOUT 45 MINUTES BEFORE KYGO CAME ON. *squeals excitedly ad infinitum* I have to say, although I mentioned in this post that Firestone is my least favourite of his original songs, I’ve changed my mind. I mean, now I don’t really have a least favourite, but the live version really changed my mind and yup, I love it now. Me being classic geeky me, I also got excited about some of the live stuff on the big screens because you could see all the equipment and stuff and as I discovered yesterday, I’m nerdy enough for that stuff to interest me. Maybe that’s a future career possibility…

ugh I’m in major post-concert depression mode right now.

BUT I do get to see him again at BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend, yay – originally I wasn’t that excited because I thought that after seeing him once I wouldn’t be that bothered about seeing him again but nope I am seriously excited. Just got to get through half my GCSEs first…

I’m now going to bombard you with photos (mostly mine, some from Kygo’s Snapchat but it’s fairly obvious which is which) because I NEED TO RELIVE IT OKAY. (sorry for the dodgy orientation of some of the photos)

(majorly sad I’m not going to the show tonight :()

(above photos courtesy of Kygo/Brixton O2)

Also, we saw a holy wall, aka the Scott Mills bridge at Fleet Services. Woop. The wall of the gods.


So yeah. Fangirling explosion over (phew)(until May, at least). What are your thoughts on Kygo (if you haven’t heard his music why are you not on YouTube/Spotify already like seriously)? Have you been lucky enough to see him live? Are you going to the Big Weekend, or have you got any other concerts lined up? Let me know in the comments!


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Those Three Words: Here’s Free Chocolate! (Review + £40 Giveaway)



What are those three little words, the ones that every teenager (and probably most adults/younger children) would love to hear? The ones that are written into folklore as a surefire way to cement your romantic relationship, reassure your children, resolve arguments? Well?

For me, at least (and I suspect many of you will agree), it’s just got to be those three magic words: “Here’s free chocolate”. Unfortunately, many of us don’t get to hear this often. My sister was lucky, when her boyfriend randomly brought her a big box of Maltesers and an impressive bunch of flowers. My parents may hear it on their wedding anniversary. But me? Poor, little, single, chocolate-craving me? I only hear it when my parents are in an extraordinarily good mood. (I mean, that’s better than nothing. But still.)

Out of the blue, exactly a month ago today in fact, my chocolate cravings were (temporarily. They’re back again now.) banished. All because of these three words. I was contacted by Serenata Flowers, a UK-based online florist and gift shop, who happen to do kick-ass chocolates, to maybe review their chocolates. (I mean, the three words weren’t exactly used in the email. But that was the general theme of it).

I nearly said no. I didn’t want to say yes for the sake of it, and veer away from what I really blog about. But then, after speaking to a few members of the (highly awesome) Twitter Blog Squad, I decided to go for it. I mean, who really refuses free chocolate? Not me, at least! So now I present for you in an in-depth chocolate review, and (As your saviour) the chance for other singletons like me to get free chocolate, and for those in a relationship (like my sister) to get their free chocolate fix, away from Valentine’s Day. Everyone’s a winner, really!

So I duly picked out some chocolates – “Raspberry French Dusted Truffles” and the “Classic Chocolate Selection Box“. Now, just a note on shipping – it may have been because I wasn’t ordering through the website as normal, but my chocolates came exactly when expected, the day after I asked for them. That was on a courier though, so I can’t vouch for the normal shipping standards.


The overall presentation was nice, the two boxes in a cardboard box on top of dark purple tissue paper, except the only wrapping really was the box and a bow on each of the chocolate boxes (transparent, circular plastic for the selection box, gold, rectangular cardboard on the truffles). That wasn’t a big issue, unless you were planning the chocolates as a big, special present. Also, with the selection box – the plastic was a bit flimsy and the lid hard to get back on, as well as fitting all the chocolates in – I was struggling having taken a few out of the equation (and into my mouth) so I have no idea how they did it in the first place!

Now on to the truffles. YES. These are described as “heavenly berry bites of paradise” and I’ve gotta be honest – they 100% live up to that. I absolutely love raspberry chocolates in any form, and as truffles they’re just superb. One thing I especially liked was how there were small chewy raspberry bits within the truffles – it added texture and made them more interesting.


Next, the selection box. This was mostly a hit, with just a couple of misses. One miss – no little card telling you what each chocolate is. This makes it really hard to review them and awkward to eat! It’s odd that they’ve left that out, as it just comes as standard with pretty much any mixed chocolate selection these days. The other miss was the flavour of two particular chocolates – cuboids, two brown, two white, with a thin line running around the chocolate maybe a quarter of the way up. I have no idea what the flavour was, but my mum and I both found them to have a really disgusting aftertaste. Bleh! The rest were nice though, surprisingly including the weird-but-good rose chocolate. That was a first for me!


Nice chocolates ft. 3x the really weird ones

Now that I’ve reviewed the chocolates in great detail for you…it’s time for you to win some! Serenata Flowers have very kindly offered the chance for one of you to win a £40 voucher to be spent on chocolates at To win, simply enter the Rafflecopter giveaway linked just below…


Many thanks again to Serenata Flowers for giving me the opportunity to host this giveaway – and for saying those three words to me!

Good luck and happy entering!


I Had An Awesome Day!

Today was such an awesome day – or at least, the afternoon was. It was my best friend’s birthday party, which normally would be cool enough, but this particular friend always has amazing birthday parties, and this year was no different – Zizzi’s restaurant for pizza, followed by seeing Pitch Perfect 2!!! It feels like so long since I first heard about PP2, and back then 15th of May seemed like an endlessly long time until it was released – but time has flown by, and it was SO worth the wait! One of my friends reckoned it wasn’t as good as the first one, but I really liked it – they each follow quite different storylines- the first is more generally about acapella and the Barden Bellas as a whole, and the second is more goal-centric. The MUSIC though! I’ve compiled a Spotify playlist called ‘Aca-Awesome!’ of the soundtracks for both movies (oddly enough, the soundtrack for the second one seemed to have been released before the film, at least here in the UK – maybe it was released earlier elsewhere in the world? Any Americans know?), and have literally been listening to that for ages, as well as reading an article about the similarities between acapella in the Pitch Perfect world and in real life, and binge watching Mike Tompkins acapella covers on YouTube – he does a really good Taylor Swift/Bastille mashup, and a cover of Nicki Minaj’s ‘Starships’ in collaboration with random people around the world and none other than the Pitch Perfect cast themselves! Ah, such aca-perfection…I’ve actually asked for the soundtrack for my birthday in a just over a week, and with any luck will get to go see it for a second time with my mum and sister. Yay!

Zizzi’s was also great – the pizza is incredible, and despite the fact we were a group of seven teenagers with no adults, the staff were really friendly, and brought out a candle in the birthday girl’s ice cream, starting off a round of ‘Happy Birthday’! I remember them being the same when we went for the same girl’s birthday last year, which is really nice – I’ve been to Yo! Sushi with a few friends before, and we weren’t treated anywhere near as nicely – they were a bit snotty, as though they didn’t trust us to pay or something.

As well as the pizza, the Tuscan potatoes that accompanied it were brilliant, and the desserts were phenomenal. I had a chocolate, praline and sea salt torte with mascarpone gelato (or something like that), accompanied by these caramel-y decorative wafers –  I think they were caramelised ginger maybe, they tasted like those Lotus biscuits you get from the hairdresser? Or is that just me? I nicked a bit of the birthday girl’s pomegranate gelato too, which was delish.

My friend really liked her presents too, which was nice, although it was quite funny – she turned to me and said “OK, just to let you know, when I give you your birthday present – I swear I wasn’t copying you, I’ve had it bought for weeks, it’s just really similar to this!”. I shall certainly be interested to discover what my present is…

How’s your Saturday been? Have you ever been to Zizzi’s, and if so, what were your thoughts on it? And probably most importantly, has anyone already seen Pitch Perfect 2, or has plans to?

As always, thanks for reading!


P.S. If you haven’t already, make my day even better by filling in my reader survey! There’s no registration, it’s completely anonymous, and it’ll only take a couple of minutes, I swear!

Tracklisting Tuesdays: A Great Big World

As you may know, every Tuesday I do a regular feature called Tracklisting Tuesdays,  where I review a song/annoyingly say how much I love an artist/something to do with music.
This week, its the turn of A Great Big World with the track Rockstar.

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