CHANGE by Jonny Olley
Holy Smokes! As if his last single ‘Slow’ wasn’t enough of a fervent, impassioned appeal to the senses, Jonny Olley has just shattered through his glass case of emotion with his rip-roaringly powerful new beltering anthem ‘Change’. God damn. I knew Jonny was always going to deliver but I wasn’t quite expecting anything quite this solid, anything quite as earth-shatteringly electrically charged and bursting with fulminating power.
Having said that, we were all very much aware of just how good this guy’s music can be. From the profoundly poignant songwriting to the epic AF production of his tracks, Jonny Olley has previously proven that he’s one to keep an ear on. ‘Change’, however, has undeniably proven that there are still so many sides and so much more music of his that are yet to be unleashed on the world and I, for one, can’t wait to keep on hearing from him.
Channelling his fiery, eruptive and always gritty vocal performance into this tour de force of unprecedented power and fury is a joy to the ears and a feast for the soul. I mean, cuhmawn! If you don’t get goosebumps while blaring this out on your headphones then you need to make some changes in your life. You might need therapy. Well, heck, what better therapy than to stick this track on the biggest speaker you can find and thrash the f’ out!
Kick something. Flip something over. Pick up a tangerine and launch it out of your window. Something!
If there’s any one word that can be used to objectively describe recent times its ‘Change’. Now more than ever we’re faced with the fact that this old thing we call life is transient. It ain’t gon’ be like this forever, ya heard? All of the passions, interests, friendships and love affairs. They might not be here this time next year. They might evolve and shape shift their ways into new experiences, new curses and blessings. What worked in the past might not work in the future and guess what? That’s what makes this life that much more interesting.
What would life be without change? Hella boring, that’s what. Without change we couldn’t appreciate the sheer blinding, blistering, breathtaking beauty of our finite time on earth.
For me, this is what Jonny Olley conveys in his latest single. The complex tapestry of fears and euphorias that comes with this realisation that we too must lose something in order to gain another. The realisation that the new might not always hit the same sweet spot as the old but that, ultimately, this next step is a step forward and never a step back.
It’s a painful realisation to face but one that will embellish our lives infinitely in a way that we might not realise until the final analysis. It’s no wonder that this song has been delivered with the fierce and fiery, melodramatic frenzy that it has. How could it not have been?!
Jonny is tapping into a perennial sentiment that has been felt since the dawn of man, giving voice to the intersection between the fear and sorrow of letting go and the excitement and elation of being gifted with new experiences.
To that, I say: ‘Onwards and Upwards’.
Listen to Change on Spotify here!
Words by Liam Macgregor Hastie
Same Page by The Idolins
Finally, we are blessed with a new, refreshing single from the Nottingham based band The Idolins. ‘Same Page’ is a beautifully rendered folk song, providing a sense of calm and reassurance.
The Idolins musical influence originating from the Cranberries and Tracy chapman is very evident in this melodic song with a folk twist. The deeply reflective lyrics focusing on the concept of being on the same page and everybody struggles, bodes a sense comfort and security. The song offers a shoulder to cry on or resembles a light in the corner of a darkened room. Lead singer, Karen Smalley’s delicate voice harmonises effortlessly with the acoustic backdrop provided by fellow members Nick Scott, Mark Rice and Tom Dukes.
From humble beginnings of uniting at an open mic night in Nottingham, The Idolins have evolved into a 5-piece band over the past 19 years. With the last year being monotonous and unnerving for many people following the pandemic, it is inspiring to hear new, powerful music from the band that offers reassurance that you are not alone.
With their love of gigging being a core focus for the Idolins, I bet they can’t wait to be back gigging again, storytelling and sharing their love of music with their adoring fans and fellow folk lovers in a local music venue in the near future.
Review by Laura Cooke
ONE FROM THE ALBUM…
UPTOWN ACID from DEEP NOT DARK by 1st Blood
Once again 1st Blood have released another banger, with a prominent beat and thought-provoking lyrics. Questioning the order of the elites, ‘Uptown Acid’ comprises the feeling of chaos from the overpowering beat of the drums and the result is an overpowering sense of revolution!
The song, coupled with an underground, intense DIY music video adds to the overall chaos of this songs intent to create unsettlement. 1st blood clearly have a talent for bringing the beat, melody, lyrics and music video together to create a hard-hitting track.
The ingenious lyrics cannot be undermined, with the multi layered meanings, creating a cryptic tone for fighting against the order of the uptown. These form a mental image of passionate protests and carnage that prevails following a stand against the general order.
The new album ‘Deep Not Dark’ offers a selection of rap tracks like ‘Kush blues Bros’ and if you like Uptown Acid, definitely checkout ‘Day 5’ (Repeat Now). 1st Blood are an incredibly established Nottingham collective of versatile veterans and their undeniable influence on the city’s hip hop scene utilising Pete Chilver’s production work with 1st Blood and other groups and the crew’s member’s offshoot successes and collaborations (check out Liam Bailey, Louis Cypher, Local Healers and Punning Clan) cannot be over stated enough! I think I’ll be keeping an eye on them as something tells me there’s much more in the pipeline coming soon…
Review by Laura Cooke