Posted in Music

Sometimes, Forever – Soccer Mommy album review

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

In a continuation of my assertion that 2022 is the year that the music gods have blessed us, here’s a review of one of my most anticipated albums of the year!

I’ve been a fan of Soccer Mommy since hearing her on the radio years ago, listening to all of her albums and even seeing her live a few times (once opening for Vampire Weekend, the next time headlining—the crowd SUCKED for that one but she was great). So when I heard that she had a new album coming out this June, I was ECSTATIC. Unfortunately, the album ended up coming out on the same day that they announced that Roe v. Wade was overturned, so…yeah, that soured my mood for the whole weekend. But when I was able to get back out of the muck, I listened to this album, and it solidified itself as my favorite album of hers—each one just keeps getting better and better, and Sometimes, Forever was particularly adventurous!

(for my review of the album before last, color theory, click here!)

Enjoy this album review!

SOMETIMES, FOREVER – SOCCER MOMMY ALBUM REVIEW

TRACK 1: “Bones” – 8.5/10

You make me feel like I am whole again,

But I think your heart could use a tourniquet…

Soccer Mommy, “Bones”

Especially with the rest of the album to contextualize it, “Bones” is the perfect opening track for Sometimes, Forever. It feels just enough like classic Soccer Mommy that it feels timeless, but it’s a catchy, familiar-feeling song that eases you into the different direction that the rest of the album goes. On its own, it’s the perfect little indie-pop song: hooky, lyrically witty, and filled with bright guitars.

TRACK 2: “With U” – 9/10

This is where the album starts getting adventurous, and I’m 100% here for it! Lyrically, Allison is sharper than ever, but the addition of the more electronic instrumentals combined with her classic guitar work makes an immersive soundscape that swept me off my feet on the first listen. LOVE IT.

TRACK 3: “Unholy Affliction” – 10/10

This. THIS.

“Unholy Affliction” was the second single to be released from this album, and after “Shotgun,” this is what made me certain that I was going to love the album. My family and I agreed that it sounded like a Chelsea Wolfe song, something completely unexpected—and highly successful—for Soccer Mommy! Dark, immersive, and pulsating, “Unholy Affliction” was an instant favorite on the album, and one of her most daring songs to date.

TRACK 4: “Shotgun” – 8/10

Look at your blue eyes like the stars,

Stuck in the headlights of a car…

Soccer Mommy, “Shotgun”

This was the first single to be released for the album, and while it’s not the best on the album, like “Bones,” it’s an instantly catchy indie-pop song. In comparison to the rest of the album, it almost seems like Allison is playing it safe, but it’s also proof that even when she’s holding back, she can produce something as fun and memorable as this.

TRACK 5: “newdemo” – 7.5/10

Hear the city roar,

A creature that feeds behind closed doors…

Soccer Mommy, “newdemo”

Dizzy and strangely sweeping, “newdemo” strays into new territory like “Unholy Affliction” did. It’s clear that Soccer Mommy and company had fun messing around with different synths and distortions while producing this song; it feels like it’s actively being warped around as you listen to it, veering slightly off-key but bringing itself back together just as swiftly. Not quite as successful as some of its counterparts, but still a success in and of itself.

TRACK 6: “Darkness Forever” – 9/10

Again with the Chelsea Wolfe sounds!! “Darkness Forever” edges close to metal on several occasions, with a creeping bassline and heavy, distorted guitars. Just like “Unholy Affliction,” Soccer Mommy’s experimentations with darker sounds lead to nothing but success—definitely one of her best songs in recent years!

TRACK 7: “Don’t Ask Me” – 8.5/10

With its fast, punchy guitars and Soccer Mommy’s airy, alluring voice, “Don’t Ask Me” has an easy time of cementing itself as one of the highlights on Sometimes, Forever. While it doesn’t delve completely into darkness like “Darkness Forever” or “Unholy Affliction,” it’s unafraid to get heavier, which works completely in its favor. An instant earworm and one of my favorites off this album!

TRACK 8: “Fire In The Driveway” – 9.5/10

Saw it in your blue eyes

When you were just a small child,

Now you’re only ashes of a man…

Soccer Mommy, “Fire In The Driveway”

“Fire In The Driveway” grounds Sometimes, Forever after the fast-paced “Don’t Ask Me,” delving into the nostalgic melancholy that makes Soccer Mommy so memorable. With its instantly memorable lyrics and bright, echoing guitars, this one is an easy standout on an already fantastic album.

TRACK 9: “Following Eyes” – 7.5/10

The lyrics are as potent as the rest of the album, but there’s something about this that puts it lower on the list for me. It’s still a fantastic song, no question, but it’s almost as though it tries to mesh older Soccer Mommy with her newer, darker sound. It’s very close to making it, but there’s some tiny bit missing, something that doesn’t quite piece the whole thing together. Nonetheless, still a great song.

TRACK 10: “Feel It All The Time” – 8/10

Like “Bones” and “Shotgun,” this feels like a timeless Soccer Mommy song—if you had told me that it had been from color theory or even Clean, I would’ve believed you. Yet still, it easily finds its place on this album, deftly adding to the mix of borderline-playing it safe to exploring new territory.

TRACK 11: “Still” – 9/10

I don’t how how to feel things small,

It’s a tidal wave or nothing at all…

Soccer Mommy, “Still”

For the closing track, Soccer Mommy brings it home with a somber acoustic piece laced with ghosts of the strange synths that adorned a good portion of the album. Unlike “Following Eyes,” the blend feels natural, and Allison’s knack for bringing genuine emotion to the forefront creates a beautiful end to the album, and a beautiful song that can stand by itself.

I averaged out my ratings for this album, and it came out to about an 8.6! I’d say that’s right on the mark; with every album, Soccer Mommy gets better and better, and Sometimes, Forever is her best work yet—dark and bold, but unafraid to return to her candid, emotional roots. Love it!

Since this is an album review, consider the whole album today’s song.

That’s it for this album review! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Monthly Wrap-Ups

September 2021 Wrap-Up 🍂

Happy Thursday, bibliophiles!

September started out a little stressful, but now I feel like I’m in a better place than I’ve been for most of this year. I can neither confirm nor deny that this is because it’s finally fall and it’s cold enough for me to wear my favorite jackets.

Let’s begin, shall we?

GENERAL THOUGHTS:

ɦσµรε || αɳเɱε | •Anime• Amino

September has been my first full month back in school; it started out more than a little stressful, thanks to getting my college applications all sorted out, but now that I’m (somewhat) over that hump, I’m feeling a lot better. I’ve managed to keep my grades in a good place, so I’m happy about that!

I also managed to finish draft 2 of my sci-fi WIP!! I’m super proud of myself for that one–I cut down a whole lot of filler, and I feel a lot better about it as a whole. I’m going to let it sit for a few months before I go back and edit it, but I feel great about it. In the meantime, I’ve been poring through a draft I abandoned in 2019 that was…surprisingly good, given that it was written almost two and a half years ago. I’ve been outlining on and off, but I’m going to try and actually get this writing business back in motion soon.

As for the rest of the month, it’s been peaceful. We got the book club back up and running at my high school, I spent the weekend in Vail, and I went to two fantastic concerts–Spoon and St. Vincent! They were both great, but the latter will always have a special place in my heart. St. Vincent was a major hero of mine in middle school, and she’s still a hero now, and seeing her live made all my dreams come true.

And now it’s almost October! I’m so excited–Halloween season, loads of good movies coming out (The French Dispatch, Dune, etc.), fall in general…good times.

Wes Aderson's new film is very popular in Cannes, the director of "Virgo"  is back - iNEWS

READING AND BLOGGING:

I read 21 books this month! More than I expected, given that I haven’t had as much time to read this month, but I did read a lot of shortish books, so…

2 – 2.75 stars:

Namesake (Fable, #2) by Adrienne Young
Namesake (Fable, #2)

3 – 3.75 stars:

Amazon.com: Our Bloody Pearl (These Treacherous Tides): 9781721833412:  Bryn, D. N.: Books
Our Bloody Pearl

4 – 4.75 stars:

Amazon.com: The Mirror Season: 9781250624123: McLemore, Anna-Marie: Books
The Mirror Season

FAVORITE BOOK OF THE MONTH (NOT COUNTING RE-READS): Curses4.25 stars

Curses by Lish McBride

SOME POSTS I’M PROUD OF:

POSTS I ENJOYED FROM OTHER WONDERFUL PEOPLE:

SONGS/ALBUMS I’VE ENJOYED:

I just LOVE the first 8 seconds of this song (and the whole thing, for that matter) for no particular reason
ridiculously catchy
okay I really need to listen to this whole album
can confirm now that I’ve seen these guys live twice that they are SPECTACULAR in concert
SHE’S BACK
seeing her live was simply magic
note to self: listen to more Andrew Bird

DID I FOLLOW THROUGH WITH MY SEPTEMBER GOALS?

bradpittstain | Damon albarn, Blur band, Britpop
  • Read at least 20 books: 21!
  • Don’t stress too much about college stuff oof: yep! Now that I know how things work, I feel a lot better.
  • Take care of yourself: well, I listened to “Girls & Boys” on repeat on Bisexual Visibility Day, so I’ll count that as self-care.

GOALS FOR OCTOBER:

Best Coraline Cat GIFs | Gfycat
IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN
  • Read at least 20 books
  • Post more than just Goodreads Mondays/Book Review Tuesdays (schoolwork permitting, of course, schoolwork first)
  • Celebrate SPOOKY SEASON accordingly

Today’s song:

That’s it for this month in blogging! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: July 12 – 18, 2021

Happy Sunday, bibliophiles! I hope this week has treated you well.

I’ve had another quiet week this week, for the most part. Just some summer homework, reading, all that. It’s been getting super hot over here, but I’ve been reading inside and outside.

Reading-wise, I’d say I had a pretty good week. I’ve only had one read that I didn’t like, and I finished the book that my English class assigned for summer homework (Native Son). I also got to go to the comic shop, so I got through a few single issues too! I have a really big one waiting as well…

As far as writing goes, I finally figured out the deal with the word count for my NaNoWriMo goal, so I fixed that up to a manageable level. I’ve been making a whole lot of progress with my sci-fi WIP though! It’s getting close to 200 pages now…

Other than that, I’ve just been drawing, screaming with my friend about Fargo, finishing Loki (AAAH THAT FINALE), and volunteering at the library. I’m going to see Black Widow this afternoon too! I’m proud of myself for avoiding spoilers up until now…guess I’ve learned my lesson from Infinity War…

Vote Loki Loki Series Coming To Disney+ in May 202... - Tumbex

WHAT I READ THIS WEEK:

Fable (Fable, #1) – Adrienne Young (⭐️⭐️⭐️.5)

Amazon.com: Fable: A Novel (Fable, 1) (9781250254368): Young, Adrienne:  Books

Sick Kids in Love – Hannah Moskowitz (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5)

Amazon.com: Sick Kids In Love (9781640637320): Moskowitz, Hannah: Books

A Dark and Hollow Star – Ashley Shuttleworth (⭐️⭐️.5)

Amazon.com: A Dark and Hollow Star (9781534453678): Shuttleworth, Ashley:  Books

Native Son – Richard Wright (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Native Son by Richard Wright

When You Were Everything – Ashley Woodfolk (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Amazon.com: When You Were Everything (9781524715915): Woodfolk, Ashley:  Books

POSTS AND SUCH:

SONGS:

CURRENTLY READING/TO READ NEXT WEEK:

The Never Tilting World – Rin Chupeco

Amazon.com: The Never Tilting World (Never Tilting World, 1)  (9780062821799): Chupeco, Rin: Books

Earth Abides – George R. Stewart

Earth Abides: A Novel: Stewart, George R.: 9780345487131: Amazon.com: Books

Circe – Madeline Miller

Amazon.com: CIRCE eBook: Miller, Madeline: Kindle Store

Invincible: Compendium One – Robert Kirkman, Cory Walker, Ryan Ottley

Invincible Compendium Volume 1

Today’s song:

That’s it for this week in blogging! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: June 21 – 27, 2021

Happy Sunday, bibliophiles! I hope this week has treated you well.

It’s been kind of a semi-quiet summer week for me, which I’m not complaining about in the slightest. I had a lot of time to read, I did some drawing and writing, and I hung out and got ice cream with one of my closest friends! Since I was fully remote for all of last year for school, I hadn’t really hung out with anyone since…oh, probably 2019, so it was so lovely to see her again.

Reading-wise, I had a bit of a hit-or-miss week; I read a lot, but almost every other book I read was just kind of meh. I did find an AMAZING read though, and I can’t wait to review it next week! The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea made my heart so happy, but more on that later…

As for writing, it’s also been a toss-up; I had a few days this week where I cranked out a whole bunch of words for scenes I really liked, but then the motivation would fade away a little bit. Last night I could barely write, even though I’m switching to the POV of my favorite character, so hopefully I can get my motivation back into gear…

Loki Episode 3 Casual Marvel Fan Thoughts
my will to write disappearing as soon as I open the Pages document

Other than that, I finished Invincible (That finale was BRUTAL), caught up on Loki (BI RIGHTS), listened to a lot of Gorillaz and the new Car Seat Headrest covers EP, and drove on the highway for the first time! I still need quite a few more hours before I can do my driver’s test, but I’m getting there!

WHAT I READ THIS WEEK:

Juliet Takes a Breath – Gabby Rivera (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera: 9780593108192 |  PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books

The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea – Maggie Tokuda Hall (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5)

Amazon.com: The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea (9781536204315):  Tokuda-Hall, Maggie: Books

Here the Whole Time – Vitor Martins (⭐️⭐️.75, rounded up to ⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Amazon.com: Here the Whole Time eBook: Martins, Vitor, Helena, Larissa:  Kindle Store

Every Body Looking – Candice Iloh (⭐️⭐️⭐️.75, rounded up to ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Every Body Looking by Candice Iloh

The Obsidian Tower (Rooks and Ruin, #1) – Melissa Caruso (⭐️⭐️)

The Obsidian Tower (The Gate of Secrets): Caruso, Melissa: 9780356513195:  Amazon.com: Books

POSTS AND SUCH:

SONGS:

CURRENTLY READING/TO READ NEXT WEEK:

Instructions for Dancing – Nicola Yoon

Instructions for Dancing by Nicola Yoon: 9781524718961 |  PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books

The Light of the Midnight Stars – Rena Rossner

The Light of the Midnight Stars - Kindle edition by Rossner, Rena.  Literature & Fiction Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

The Gilded Ones – Namina Forna

The Gilded Ones(Deathless #1) by Namina Forna – Superfluous Reading

Miss Benson’s Beetle – Rachel Joyce

Miss Benson's Beetle eBook por Rachel Joyce - 9780812996715 | Rakuten Kobo  Estados Unidos

Sasha Masha – Agnes Borinsky

Amazon.com: Sasha Masha eBook: Borinsky, Agnes: Kindle Store

Today’s song:

C H I L L S

That’s it for this week in blogging! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: May 24 – 30, 2021

Happy Sunday, bibliophiles! I hope you’ve all had a good week.

This week was absolutely a relief after…well, this entire school year, really. I had my last three days of school, and except for a handful of finals (which I managed to do pretty well on! yay!), it was mostly just wrapping things up and saying our goodbyes.

And now it’s summer! I’m so happy!!

I had a pretty great reading week too! I got some free hardcovers in exchange for reviews from a program at my library, and I’ve liked all but one of them, so that’s a good sign. I still have one more left that I’m currently reading, and it’s great so far.

Other than that, I’ve been reveling in the fact that I get to sleep in again, enjoying both the warm weather and the rain we’re getting this weekend, and watching some good old David Attenborough nature documentaries. (What is it about clips of coral reefs that instantly calms me?)

WHAT I READ THIS WEEK:

We Free the Stars (Sands of Arawiya, #2) – Hafsah Faizal (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Amazon.com: We Free the Stars (Sands of Arawiya, 2) (9780374311575):  Faizal, Hafsah: Books

The Infinity Courts (The Infinity Courts, #1) – Akemi Dawn Bowman (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Amazon.com: The Infinity Courts (9781534456495): Bowman, Akemi Dawn: Books

Lost in the Never Woods – Aiden Thomas (⭐️⭐️.5)

Lost in the Never Woods by Aiden Thomas

Be Dazzled – Ryan La Sala (⭐️⭐️⭐️.5)

Be Dazzled by Ryan La Sala

POSTS AND SUCH:

SONGS:

CURRENTLY READING/TO READ NEXT WEEK:

Sanctuary – Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher

Amazon.com: Sanctuary (9781984815712): Mendoza, Paola, Sher, Abby: Books

The Upside of Unrequited (Simonverse, #2) – Becky Albertalli

Amazon.com: The Upside of Unrequited (9780062348708): Albertalli, Becky:  Books

Today’s song:

That’s it for this week in blogging! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Book Review Tuesday, Books

Book Review Tuesday (4/21/20)–Sawkill Girls

Book review tuesday header.jpg

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

I put this novel on a Goodreads Monday a while back, and my expectations were…well, I kind of forget, to be honest. On a whim, I put it on hold on the Kindle library, and now, I am SO GLAD that I read it. A beautifully written, supernatural feminist tale!

Enjoy this week’s review!

Sawkill Girls - Claire Legrand - Hardcover

Sawkill Girls 

For generations, Sawkill Island has had a reputation for girls that go missing in the night, never to be seen again. Rumors and legends of a hungry beast run rampant in the tiny community, but only now are they being investigated. And three girls may be the key to uncovering Sawkill’s supernatural secret.

Marion is new to the island. Plagued by discordant sounds, haunting visions, and a swarm of pale moths, she knows that something may be amiss on the island. Zoey still grieves the loss of her best friend, but with Marion’s help, she may have the tools to avenge her death at last. And Val, the school’s queen bee, harbors a secret that may hold the fate of the entire town in the balance.

avengers endgame | Tumblr | Avengers, Marvel superheroes, Marvel ...

Claire Legrand has always been something of a hit-or-miss author for me. I liked The Year of Shadows and Some Kind of Happinessbut Foxheart got on my nerves. I didn’t know what to expect going into Sawkill Girls, as this was the first of her more YA novels that I’ve read. (The rest listed are middle grade.) So I was veritably stunned at how incredible this novel was.

I’m not much of a horror fan, but I do LOVE a good spooky, paranormal mystery sometimes. (I mean, hey, I’m a huge Hellboy fan, so there you have it.) This novel was wonderfully creepy and atmospheric. The prose was gorgeous, adding to the generally atmospheric feel of the novel. I was able to picture the sleepy setting wonderfully, with the lapping ocean and the thick forest…and lots of moths. MOTHS.

If moths are so excited about the light why they don't hang out ...

(Bröther…I know this meme is dead, but I’ll torment you with it anyway…)

Legrand’s writing struck the perfect chord, a mix of beautiful, at times cosmic prose and tense creepiness throughout.

And I can’t get ENOUGH of most of the characters. Their emotion was palpable, and not only that, I loved the sisterhood dynamic that existed between them. Marion and Zoey were my personal favorites: Marion, with her intuition and determination, and Zoey, with her relentless loyalty and cunning. Even though I didn’t like Val as much (I think the point was to not like her as much, anyway), her struggles were deeply human, and she really came through in the end (no spoilers). Plus, Zoey throws out both X-Men and A Wrinkle in Time references. Of course you’ve got my attention.

Control Jean Grey GIF - Control JeanGrey SophieTurner - Discover ...
Sawkill Girls without context

And through it all, Legrand poses powerful themes of feminine friendship, strength, resistance, sisterhood, and resilience. We also have some LGBTQ+ and POC representation! Zoey is African-American and asexual, and there’s a wlw relationship in the novel. Bottom line: never underestimate three queer girls with powers.

All in all, a thrilling, feminist horror novel with transcendental writing and characters that are a force to be reckoned with. Five stars for me! 

Oh Its Beautiful GIF - Oh ItsBeautiful StarWars - Discover & Share ...

Sawkill Girls is a standalone, but as I mentioned earlier in the post, Claire Legrand has a multitude of other books out. 🙂

Today’s song:

That’s it for this week’s Book Review Tuesday! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

thank you for reading.jpg

Posted in Book Tags, Books

Currently Reading Book Tag

book tags header.jpg

Happy Friday, bibliophiles!

Quick update before I begin:

…whooowee, looks like I’ll be staying home for the rest of the school year. I mean, it’s nice to stay around the house all the time, but I do miss going out to restaurants, the movies, bookstores…at least I have the Kindle library to help me with the latter. And they’re pushing back all the good movies…moment of silence for the fact that The New Mutants was supposed to come out today…[single tear slides down cheek]

Anyway, I found this tag on The Comfy Reader, and I thought I’d give it a try!

Here goes nothing…

How many books do you usually read at once?

Strictly one at a time, unless I have something to read for school. I used to be able to read up to four books at once, but I’ve slowly abandoned that method for focusing my attention on one book at a time.

Pfff, there’s this one scene from Hellboy (2004) that would fit this perfectly, where Professor Bruttenholm makes a comment on Abe’s reading habits…I can’t seem to find a gif of it, woe is me…

Guillermo Del Toro Hb GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

How do you decide when to switch between multiple reads?

See above. I…don’t. I’m not sure how I managed it when I used to read multiple books at once, for that matter. I feel like I probably just switched based on when I ended in a good chapter, or if my interest just waned for one book.

Shrug GIFs | Tenor

Do you ever switch bookmarks partway through a book?

NO! NO, ABSOLUTELY NOT…

Bernie Sanders GIF by The Daily Dot - Find & Share on GIPHY

[ahem] anyway, I do pair up my books with a special bookmark that matches the cover color scheme or genre (I have a solar system one that I pair up with sci-fi books, sometimes)

Where do you keep the book(s) you’re currently reading?

It depends. Depending on the time of day, it’s either tucked away in my backpack, or lounging on the coffee table.

Tom Hiddleston Celebs GIF | Gfycat

What time of day do you read the most?

Early to late afternoon, mostly. Whether I’m at school or at home, that usually ends up being my reading schedule.

Book Read GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

How long do you typically read in one session?

It ranges from about a half hour to up to two hours, depending on how enthralled/not enthralled I am with the book.

Clock ticking GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Do you read hardbacks with the dust jacket off?

Not really, no. I like to keep the covers on, but it’s always interesting to take a peek and see what books look like sans dust jacket.

The book thief GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

What position do you mainly use to read?

Most of the time, I’m either sitting cross-legged or lying on my back, depending on the chair I’m sitting in.

Best Ergonomic Task Chair GIFs | Gfycat

Do you take your current read with you everywhere you go?

ABSOLUTELY. Even if I don’t end up reading when I’m taking the book places, it’s always by my side.

Always GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

How often do you update your Goodreads reading progress?

When it comes to physical books, not too often. I’m not sure why. Kindle books, however, where I can see the percentage of the way through the book I’m at, I update more frequently. Don’t ask me why…I really don’t know why I do it either…

Do not know GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

What book(s) are you currently reading?

Mosquitoland by David Arnold

I’m currently reading Mosquitoland (I’m on a bit of a David Arnold kick this week). I’m about halfway through, and I love it so far!

I tag anyone who’d like to participate! 🙂

Its All Yours GIFs | Tenor

Today’s song:

That’s it for this book tag! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

thank you for reading.jpg