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Showing posts from April, 2021

Artists Spotlight: Mea Ellis from Issue Three

Mea is a feminist illustrator from Essex. Through her art, she conveys powerful messages in the hopes that people will share and interact with her work in order to reach and encourage more people to educate themselves on the subjects she discusses. These issues discussed include race, gender, sexuality, class, and womanhood, as well as sometimes covering stereotypes within these topics.  Some of Mea's art comes from a place of personal experience as a young woman, or things other people have experienced, or just feminist topics in general that need more coverage. As a white cisgender woman, Mea captures the problems certain marginalised groups face without claiming or overshadowing their voices but rather raising awareness and pointing other privileged people in the right direction.  And of course, some of Mea's art is just for fun! With a love of drawing new hairstyles and designing outfits, sometimes Mea uses her art as just a creative outlet or for experimenting! Most of the

Artist Spotlight: Keera Harriman from Issue Three

Keera Robyn is a 25-year-old tattoo artist based in Easington Village in County Durham. Her overall interest in art started at a young age, mainly from the encouragement of her family. Her parents always encouraged Keera to express herself through painting and drawing, and she has fond memories of being taught to shade realism drawings by her Granda at around 7 or 8 years old. They would sit at her Grandma’s dining table and try to draw exactly what was in front of them. Her Granda would then add detail to her outlines to show how light and dark change an image. The exact drawing of her Grandma’s teapot is now framed in her studio as a reminder of where her love for art came from.  Keera's love for tattooing as a medium, in particular, started at around age 14, as she came across the TV series “LA Ink” and instantly thought about how being a tattoo artist looks like an amazing job. Kat Von D in particular stood out from then onwards as a massive role model for pushing a prominently

Single Review: Peach PRC - 'Josh'

by Olive McCoy So many of us have had the misfortune to waste our precious time on a ‘Josh’, the inspiration for Australia based Peach PRC’s latest release of the same name. Before the backdrop of an outrageously catchy track, Peach relays the pseudo-glamorous lifestyle of her subject, including but not limited to, punching walls, drug use and ‘borrowing’ money. The song is sickly-sweet and heavily influenced by the pop of the mid-00s. Pink and loud, the song encapsulates the ‘Bimbocore’ movement that has empowered so many women. These modern-age, self-proclaimed Bimbos are a powerful force that is often dismissed or infantilised by men for their overt and proud sexuality. Men who make so many people feel insignificant and small for doing what makes them happy. Peach, though, subverts this, criticising ‘Josh’ for his reckless behaviour that is so often praised and masculinised. Furthermore, Peach holds the men like Josh accountable for their actions. She is quoted at the beginning of t

Single Review: Natalie and The Monarchy – 'Envy the Villain'

by Will Gough Liverpool’s favourite dark theatrical grunge act, Natalie and The Monarchy, return with their new single, ‘Envy the Villain’. Singing of previous experiences of an identity crisis while working as a professional dominatrix, Natalie Papa’s distinctive and haunting vocals sings in support of sex workers who struggle with their conflicting dominating characters of sexual fantasies and their normal day-to-day personalities. The single’s topic alone is a unique one, but ‘Envy the Villain’ serves as yet another example of Natalie and The Monarchy’s strange but entertaining dark cabaret style. Following the trend of their previous work, most notably the 2019 EP ‘Pretty Little Flower’, ‘Envy the Villain’ is a powerful and strange grunge anthem that challenges popular music both with its theme and with its unmistakable noise. Although Papa demands your attention with her powerful, icy vocals and dominating presence, the ‘Monarchy’ that make up the rest of the band produce a musica

Single Review: noyou- 'Underneath the Pain'

 by Will Gough Sunderland’s indie five-piece noyou have broken into 2021 with more fresh, sparkling vibes from their new track ‘Underneath the Pain’. This track offers us more of the lively, 80s-esque soundscapes they gave us with their previous releases of ‘Bored’ and ‘Since That Day’ back last year. ‘Underneath The Pain’ immediately bursts with an upbeat, airy sound that is extremely hard to resist dancing to. The drums are energetic and driving and are accompanied by crisp keyboard and guitar work, alongside melodic but quite sad vocals. This track takes the best parts of the 80s and throws it together with modern production, great sounds, and vocals that actually make sense. ‘Underneath The Pain’ is fun, glittery, and loveable in every single way. One can be forgiven for not realising the more sombre lyrics that don’t seem to match the song’s light tone so well. ‘Underneath The Pain’ talks about experiencing insecurity in a relationship and feeling that you’re not good enough for y

Single Review: The Backfires - 'The Man'

by Chloe Gudgin The BackFires are a three-piece rock band from both sides of the Atlantic. The band consists of Alex Gomez, Harry Ruprechit and Matt Walter. Their new single ‘The Man’ from their brand new EP ‘Consider the BackFires’ is out now.  When I first heard the title of the single ‘The Man’, it automatically made me think of the popular Taylor Swift song ‘The Man’ but also was this song about the perspective of a man? Or was it completely different?  From the moment you hear the first sound of vocals on it automatically takes me to a party that you're not supposed to be at. The way the music fits into your mind is repetitive in the sense it automatically makes me want to listen to the song loop to loop. “When I look in my own eyes I try to recognize the man in front of me.” Is a lyric that sticks out for me. The way it’s relatable in every walk of life, the way growth captures us and before we know it we are craving the past person of ourselves and romanticizing the person w

Women X: Submissions open for short film festival celebrating women and non-binary filmmakers.

by Alice Fletcher Women X Film Festival is looking for short films directed, written or produced by women or non-binary filmmakers, in an attempt to combat the male-dominated, London-centric festival circuit.  With new awards for North East filmmakers and student films, submissions for short films are open until 30th June 2021, with this year’s festival being held on the 10th -12th September 2021. Celebrating its second year, Women X has been breaking down barriers faced by underrepresented voices in the industry with an ethos intrinsically connected to the community and the championing of one another.  This year’s Women X festival will take place via a combination of in-person and virtual events, showcasing North East talent and creating a global collaborative space with accessible screenings, panels, workshops, networking opportunities, and self-care spaces. As a beacon of inclusivity, the three-day festival has ensured submission costs are accessibly priced - 70% lower than the aver

Artist Spotlight: Freya Nates from Issue Three

Freya is an eighteen-year-old and the person behind Art by Freya! Having always been quite creative, taking Art as a subject up until A-level, she is now in her first year studying English Literature at the University of Edinburgh. Freya started painting clothes around 2 years ago when she went shopping for tie-dye and ending up buying a set of fabric paints instead. At first, only her friends placed orders but during lockdown she decided to take her small business to the next level. With a grandpa who works in the clothing industry, she was generously gifted around 100 t-shirts which really made a huge difference. Then, she bought her first five tote bags and was off! Without that extreme amount of time in lockdown to focus on Art by Freya, her small business would definitely not be where it is today.  Initially recreating well-known paintings, as time went on, the action of copying these paintings developed her skills and boosted her confidence to try out her own designs. Usually, pa

Single Review: Cherry Glazerr - 'Big Bang'

 by Sophi Monzon The band, Cherry Glazerr, released its most recent single titled 'Big Bang'. It is evident from the beginning that the song’s syncopation allows room for emotion and heartache to blossom.  The initial guitar riffs set anyone off into another dimension of euphoria, which is how the lead vocalist of the group, Clementine Creevy, describes the song to simulate. Creevy’s breathy vocals along with the relatable touch of lyricism that is sung with authenticity. The words refer to the splitting up of a relationship and her endurance. The perspective of this meticulous tune expresses how the person realizes that the termination of said association with a said person ended up being a mistake. They are as far and as close to each other as possible, which is the mentality that lingers after a severe separation.  As the song hits the chorus, we hear Creevy’s belting “I still call you when I need escaping” which takeovers the soft bass synth enabling the pop & indie-alt

Artist Spotlight: Sonia Espiritu

Sonia Espiritu is a 20-year-old Mexican-Filipino artist from the Bay Area. She writes songs in her car, records them in her room, and mixes them all on Garageband in-between zoom classes. It’s growing up in the East Bay Area DIY punk scene that has influenced a lot of her style and way of doing things. Her music includes detailed guitar parts and catchy 808s that typically falls within the genres of indie rock, alternative, and post-punk. Her hit single, 'ultra quiet' is a focus on the injustices and inequities within the music community. Espiritu discusses artists staying silent over issues of sexual abuse/assault, rape, and paedophilia within the music community whether it be a lack of addressing the situation or a lack of an apology. She calls for musicians to do better and fans to want more from the people they look up to. Since putting out 'ultra quiet' in August of 2020, Espiritu has put out a 4-song EP and two more singles since then— all of which are available o

Single Review: Jay Moussa-Mann - ‘What Makes You Think’

by Autumn Jones “Got your last email The words were quite short I guess you didn’t like what I wrote you Or what you heard" These are the opening lines to Jay Moussa-Mann’s 2021 single “What makes you think”. Moussa-Mann, a folk-tinged singer-songwriter tinged with electro-pop influences, grabs the attention of the listener with a gut-wrenching anecdote about not quite connecting with someone who was once deemed important. Moussa-Mann unpacks the experience of two people drifting apart in a relationship, painting a picture of heartbreak and loss. The main attraction of this song is the lyrics. Framed with a woefully catchy melody, Moussa-Mann writes each word with intention.  At no point was I, the listener, left with the feeling that there were excess words in the verses or the chorus that felt out of place. Each element of this production was well thought out and elegantly executed. From the glimmery piano in the introduction to the evocative climax in the last chorus, every ele