Ideas; some are great, others bad and depending on your logic levels certain ideas can be more than questionable. In reference to the latter two, one of the greatest innate qualities of the human brain – the seed of doubt – means that when we have particular ideas we do not always follow through on them. Unfortunately, that is also true in those times when you conjure up an idea directly related to what you are most passionate about. These moments demonstrate the duality of the essential elements of nurturing an idea to life. You need time to put the work in but it’s either never the right time or there is no time to do it. Confidence is also good, but what about the moments when you can’t find it within? Then there’s the starting point, the place where we stop ourselves in making the inaugural attempt at something therefore inhibiting yourself from making errors and progress to reaching the finishing line of a project.
I used to get really frustrated, and still do, about feeling like I couldn’t come up with good ideas to write about. Whenever an idea for a piece forms I go through a mental process of being really excited to research the topic and tell the story in a way that’s enjoyable for the reader but more often than not these ideas remain a permanent fixture on a ‘to-do list.’ When the reality of doing something hits me it intimidates me. That’s another duality, when you think of an idea you want to be the one to bring it to life but you can feel like the last person that can do it any justice. This leads us nicely to self-doubt replacing excitement forcing you to abandon that idea, even though you know that if you fought through the fear and completed the task it would make you swell with pride for following through on an idea. It’s a vicious cycle of building something in your mind to the point where you can see it but then you become mentally paralysed, inevitably preventing your creative and personal development in fulfilling your imagination.
Deadlines are essential to get anything done. Everytime I have a deadline to work towards I find that I don’t have time to be fearful about getting things done. Depending on the place it comes from, pressure is both the greatest motivator and worst deterrent. Again, this works in two ways. I’m generally one to leave things to the last minute, I was particularly good at doing this in college when assignments were due. An example of this is when I had to come up with my own essay title, research the topic and then write three-thousand words about James Joyce. I came up with the essay title at 5pm on the day before it was due and stayed at my laptop until I finished at about 2am. As rushed as it was my mind was in a completely different process of working – completely without inhibition – and it was one of my highest graded essays that I wrote during those three years. Then I think of articles I wrote under a similar amount of time pressure, thinking up article ideas out of immediate necessity which would subsequently reduce the quality of the work and compromise the integrity of the idea. I wasn’t ashamed of those pieces but I didn’t feel that they represented what I was capable of but they were there to be read while the things I wanted to do weren’t because I made myself too aware of their potential existence.
The only thing you can do the next time you have an idea bubbling in your brain is to sit down and take all the time you need to do it in a way that makes you feel like with each word written or line drawn a brick like weight is comes off your shoulders, breaking down the wall of everything and anything that made you feel like you couldn’t get to the other side. As long as you aren’t giving bad people good ideas everything will be O.K.
Real Estate – ‘Learn to Play Real Estate’s New Song “Stained Glass”‘ (Domino)
In the music industry’s streaming economy, bands have to find new and innovative ways to engage with their audiences so that they will eventually engage in activities such as buying merch or concert tickets. One way to do this is by teasing new albums, and bands will often pick their best song to showcase first, to give fans a taste of what the new record’s sound will be.
Real Estate have gone one step further, and released a teaser with no music – just the notes. The silent video shows the band playing ‘Stained Glass’ alongside the notes, and encourages fans to record themselves playing the song and upload it to social media. A quick scan of Real Estate’s Twitter pages shows that this DIY approach is harbouring delightful results – fans are incorporating hip-hop beats, their own lyrics, and creating artwork. What could be more engaging for fans than creating the song themselves?
-Grace de Blaca
Ariel Pink & Weyes Blood – ‘Tears on Fire’ (Kemado Records)
Ariel Pink and Weyes Pink may not be two artists that you would immediately put together on paper. However, when you listen to their respective discography there is an ethereal quality to the arrangements and the ambiance of their songs. Granted, they exude different kinds of etherealness. Last month, Ariel and Weyes collaborated on an EP entitled Tears on Fire brimming with songs that have blended their styles and influences in a way that one didn’t over power the other. There has always been something about both Weyes and Ariels’ music that makes it difficult to put a time on its release due to the lack of conformity to their approach and this is definitely evident with their current single, ‘Tears on Fire’, perhaps its just the video being the perfect visual companion to a song but you kind of can imagine this being played in a medieval castle back in the day.
Swet Shop Boys ft. Ali Sethi – ‘Aaja’ (Customs)
There are not enough words to describe how perfect the latest video is for ‘Aaja’, the current single by Swet Shop Boys. So, sit back get yourself a plate of baklava and enough it for yourself. Then spend your evening listening to Cashmere.
Cones – ‘Echoes On’
There isn’t much not to like about this really nice animated video by Cones. It has a lovely colour palette, the story is lovely and the song is a lovely treat for the ears.
Future Islands – ‘Ran’ (4Ad)
Directed by Albert Birney, Future Islands’ Ran is set in the group’s hometown of Baltimore, North Carolina. Lead singer the elastic legged Samuel T. Herring barrells through the suburbs and outskirts of the city running to or from something that’s never completely apparent. Grey and gloomy skies set the narrative as Herring rushes through the damp fields and tall-trees of the Baltimore country side with escape on his mind. The sense of isolation is increased in the chorus with a shimmering fire spitting embers over Herring’s face. In a time where videos suggest sophistication, sunshine, or the party lifestyle, Future Islands set a stark contrast of who they are, where they come from and what they’re about. “Ran” is the lead single from the forthcoming album, The Far Field, set for release on April 7th.