Swallows: Haunted EP

I find it hard to keep a strong interest in hardcore bands. I feel they can stagnate very quickly. Not the case with Scottish band, Swallows. Their new EP, Haunted is their best music to date and has restored my faith in this scene.

The whole EP is a concoction of abrasive vocals cut with the melodic guitars and percussion, giving the quartet their strongest release to date. Haunted draws similar sounds to La Dispute and Frank Carter, taking you on a brutal melodic journey of sheer perfection.

With a delicate sound in Almost Always,  to the poetic feature of Adam Craig on A Tired Soul, you are taken on an intense music journey with a band that knows how to get to your core.

Heading out on tour on 9th September, be sure to check these guys out for a raucous on new levels. Haunted is out now, be sure to get your copy here.

 

9/10

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Swallows: Haunted EP

#DragWednesday: On Morphe Brushes…

Well hello and good evening! Coming to you late again since I can’t seem to get my days of the week right. Took our Martyn to remind me that it was actually Drag Wednesday… Cue sort of rush job while I’m in the middle of cooking dinner which culminates in a pretty shitty Drag Wednesday. I’ve disappointed myself to be honest LOL! But hey, what can you do?

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So this week, I’m reviewing my glorious new brushes!!

Since I was starting college this week, it was time to stock up on some nice new brushes to start off with so after humming and hawing, browsing hundreds of brush sets, I almost had a nervous breakdown. No exaggeration or mocking, I genuinely lost my shit.

Whilst almost at the point of giving up, I stumbled across these beauties…

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A 30 piece Morphe Brush set which includes a roll up case with a belt. Again, I hummed and hawed at the thought of spending £140 right off the bat on brushes. But you can’t be a make-up artist if you don’t have the brushes (no sarcastic comments about how you can do airbrushing and make-up sponges), you can’t do the job well if you don’t have the right tools.

Anyway, the set I have is the Morphe Brushes 30 Piece Master Studio Brush set (501). The brushes are made up of a mixture of both natural and synthetic fibres. This was a bit of a shaky spot for me as I only use cruelty free beauty products. I did a bit of reading and apparently Morphe themselves that the hairs used in their brushes are cultivated in a cruelty free manner. The handles are wooden (as you would expect) with a chrome ferrule (again, as you would expect) and the brush number is clearly marked on each brush so you can cross reference with the list to know which brush does which job.

Upon opening, the brushes are all wrapped and the fluffy fan brushes have plastic protectors over the fibres, no damage in manufacturing or delivery. 

All of the brushes are soft but not too soft that they’re unworkable. They pick up a ridiculous amount of product and there’s no waste with creams or liquids are they’re dense therefor you’re not losing liquids soaking down into the centre of the brush. The S94 in particular is a standout for me as brushes I’ve used for foundation in the past have left me streaky or so much fluid soaks down into the brush that I end up using far more product than I ordinarily would. The liquid foundation literally sits on the flat surface of the brush and doesn’t budge until you actually apply it to your face.

I noticed a little bit of shedding with the fluffier face/powder brushes, in particular the M400, but after a wash, any loose fibres had come away and the brush was fine and ready to use.

Can’t forget the case. There’s a belt attached with a clip and it’s easily adjustable whatever your waist/hip size. It’s not too heavy that it’s uncomfortable to wear. There’s plenty of room in the case to add more brushes (because you can never have too many).My only issue with the case is that there’s no top flap or ties. Any cases I’ve had in the past have had a flap at the top which folds down over the tops of the brushes and ties at the end so I can roll and tie them away. The Morphe case just folds over in half. Which is fine if I’m just storing them away in my kit *but* if you’re planning on taking them out in a bag or anything like that where they’re not securely laying flat, you’re running the risk of them falling out of the case and ending up in the bottom of your bag. Which in the grand scheme of things isn’t a huge problem but just make sure you carry some spare cleaner just in case. 

Over the course of the past week that I’ve had them, I’ve used almost every brush in the set and none of them disappoint. I’ve found that working with eyeshadows that I wasn’t keen on in the past due to pigmentation, I’m actually starting to get more use out of them as it seems to be that it might have been the brushes not picking up product very well as opposed to the shadows themselves.

Overall, it’s an amazing set to have. Whether you’re embarking on a career in make-up artistry or just want a good set of brushes, they’re well worth the investment! Considering on the Beauty Chamber website, the brushes alone (excluding the 4 or 5 which they don’t stock on their site) cost approximately £155. So if you factor in the extra brushes and the belt/case, it’s a massive saving in the longrun to buy the set and build on it. While it might seem like a scary outlay at first, just remember that in time, the brushes will pay for themselves!!

Until next time, don’t forget to slay all day, every day!!

x Marianne x

#DragWednesday: On Morphe Brushes…

#DragWednesday: Sleek Foundation Review

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Well, this week, this basic bitch has gone a little basic with her drag look. For no other reason than time constraints. Bizarrely, my day time make-up was more interesting than my drag look…

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So while I was sitting contouring, I decided that I wanted to do a review on a foundation I’ve had in my kit for a while but not actually reviewed. A friend gave it to me and I kept the two shades (Barley and Coffee Bean) in my kit as my skin tone is quite pale. *BUT* it caught my eye while I was looking for my contour palette one day and I decided to try it out for my contour. I like quite a dark contour so Coffee Bean was perfect.

The foundation is Sleek’s Creme to Powder foundation. It’s £7.99 for a 9g compact and considering MAC’s Studio Tech foundation (another creme to powder type foundation) is £26 for 10g, it’s a total steal. The foundation comes in 30 shades which is fantastic considering a lot of high street make-up brands don’t really cater to darker skin tones. So there’s plenty of choice for make-up artists building a kit who don’t want to be constantly mixing shades and for darker complexions where a lot of high street brands only really cater to fairer to medium skin tones. The compact has a generous sized mirror in the compact and I use it regularly to do my full face as my eyesight is tragic so I can’t sit at a vanity mirror without my face being a centimetre away from the glass.

The foundation boasts a medium to full buildable coverage with a flawless finish, which sets to a powdery finish. There’s no suggestion for length of wear or anything like that on their site so I can’t do a time comparison I’m afraid. The formula is thick and creamy but doesn’t feel heavy or cakey on your face, considering the texture of the foundation. Right off the bat with one coat of foundation, the coverage is brilliant. I didn’t feel the need to apply any more foundation over the top of it and I’m a full coverage kinda gal myself. 

I only ever use this foundation for contouring as I haven’t actually been to Superdrug to pick up my own shade in the foundation but I tried out one of the lighter shades (Barley) all over my face and wore it around the house to see how it held up. It lasted the whole day. By whole day, I mean I had it on for 10 hours before washing it off. It held up all day and I didn’t have to touch up at any point.

Application wise, it comes with a sponge applicator, not dissimilar to a powder puff but more rubbery. Personally, I didn’t use it as it didn’t seem to apply the foundation to it’s full potential. I apply my contour with a flat foundation brush to get a sharp line and then blend it upwards with a RT face brush. When I applied it all over my face, I just went in with the face brush after priming with Freedom’s priming water. 

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This was after setting with powder.

My only issue with the product is it doesn’t actually set to a powdery finish. Which brings up a dilemma. How exactly do I rate it? As a cream foundation, I would say a definite 10/10 but as it’s supposed to be a cream to powder, it knocks it down to a 4/10 as it doesn’t do exactly what it says on the tin. 

Don’t let this put you off trying the foundation though (unless a definite powder finish is what you’re looking for) because it’s a wonderful foundation even if you do have to go through the extra few seconds it takes to set with powder. It gave a flawless finish, blends like a dream and doesn’t weigh your face down. I wore it on a considerably warm day, although I live in Scotland so my idea of warm might not align with everyone else’s idea of warm, and it didn’t sweat off like some foundations have done in the past.

Bottom line: try this foundation. It’s totally worth it.

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Next time we’ll have a review of the newest addition to my kit. The Morphe Master Studio Pro Brush 30pc Set. I am ITCHING to try out these bad boys!!

Until next time, don’t forget to slay all day, every day!!

x Marianne x

#DragWednesday: Sleek Foundation Review

Nova Twins Release Self-Titled EP

This band caught my eyes a few months ago when I stumbled across this North London duo a few months back with their grunged filled track Bassline Bitch. So when Nova Twins released their debut EP last week I was fucking buzzing. And still am.

Opening with their latest single Hitlist, this wp-1471980021424.jpgEP takes you on a journey of harsh tongued rhymes and filthy guitars, to the dark synths in Drums. The female empowerment this EP gives is unreal and the more I listen, the more I turn it up and go wild. It’s filled with punk, hip-hop goodness that we don’t hear often nowadays, and has essences of old Rage Against the Machine throughout.

These are two girls I wouldn’t want to mess with and look forward to them kicking ass in the years to come with their unique blend of music.

9/10

Nova Twins Release Self-Titled EP

Edinburgh Fringe Extended: Take 2

You cannot experience Edinburgh’s Fringe Festival in a day – so we went back! More comedy, more singing, and more damn right weirdness. 

Olly’s Got A Match

This show made us upset. Not because it was horrific but because only 2 of us showed up. Unfortunately that is the reality of many shows throughout the Fringe. We were meant to go on a poetic journey with word genuis Olly Watson, however instead of playing to just us 2 he gave us a brilliant poem of hosting events to a crowd of 0. (A fitting poem considering the circumstances). We loved what we heard and wish we could of heard alot more from him.

Relatively Normal

wp-1471867315228.jpgA mixed bag of comedians took to the stage to discuss the one thing we have in common – families. Hosted by Aaron Levene, he was joined by the talented Matt Hutchinson, Declan Kennedy, Alistair Sadler and Matt Price. Although a few of the jokes flatlined, we found ourselves howling with laughter mostly. From to the bone racial stereotyping to local dialects, we got a laugh at the family tales these comedians shared with us. Each of them have their own shows which we recommend go seeing!

Strictly Come Trancing with Ben Dali

Former Take Me Out contestant Ben Dali decided to unleash his hypnosis upon the Fringe. One of us was an audience member whilst the other was part of the show (we wp-1471872389485.jpglike to get a fully rounded experience here at Bubble POP Shock). After being placed under a hypontic trance, Martyn was asked to perform acts from playing the piano with his penis (which did not make a full appearance to the gratitude if the audience) lifting a ballon as a heavy weight competitor to ballet dancing across the stage. When the show ended, Martyn slowly started recall what had happened much to his embarrassment. Funny, witty and captivating, this is a show not to be missed.

Well, It’s Woody

After her first show we just had to go see Woodstock Taylor in Well It’s Woody – and wp-1471867307219.jpgwhat a show! With Woodstock tantelising us with her brilliant songs, including singing about everyones favourite Pokemon fish, Magicarp. From acts such the brilliantly funny poet Phil Alexander, whos poem of the Edinburgh lurgy has us doubled over to the fine cabaret vocals of Celia Delany, whos parody of on my own and songs of sexy bald men showed off stellar vocals and a wit to match. 

Catriona Knapman regaled us with poems of travelling and a dance teacher with a lust for life. Brilliant and one to watch. Both Dai lowe and Max Scratchman were superb with very different tales, with Max telling gruesome tales of Edinburgh to Dai sharing stories of of a womans revenge on her husbands ludicrous pranks. Truely a fabulous show with the finest acts of the Fringe.

Be sure to catch these peformers and many more, all the details can be found here.

Edinburgh Fringe Extended: Take 2

Zola: The Beginning, Middle, and End EP

It’s always hard for a band to release their music for the world to embrace and decide wether or not their band is for them. 4 peice rock outfit Zola have graced us with their brand new EP, The Beginning, Middle, and  End. This heavy 3 track release definitely didn’t offend our ears. 

The quartet have certainly explored the heavier side of rock, especially on More, which had tinges or Korn with their meaty riffs. However this is definitely not a metal album. If anything the Queens of the Stone Age and Eagles of Death Metal influence are highly evident, and at times feels like I am just listening to them. Lyrically this band have nailed the art of song writing and know the formula for a perfectly loud rock track. 

The opening track 3000 is definitely a favourite here. Starts subtle, builds beautifully with the wail of guitars and in cuts in lead vocalist Nick with his unique voice. It will be interesting to see where this band will go with their next release and how they will develop. With a little bit more roughnes, Zola will be ones to watch. 

Their EP  The Beginning, Middle and End is out now.

7/10

Zola: The Beginning, Middle, and End EP

The Free Fringe: Extended Edition

It’s the time of year when an array of performers from around the world descend upon the Scottish capital to delight us with song, dance, comedy and bat shit crazy shows. Yes, it’s the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.We braved the busy capital and explored the PBH’s Free Fringe. What a fucking treat we were in for.

Woodstock Taylor & Songs

wp-1471283822297.jpgFirst from the flyer we were intrigued as to what Woodstock Taylor was going to provide. With open minds, we embarked to Fingers Piano Bar. First impressions of Woodstock is that of a very eccentric and bubbly character. She sat at the piano and from the small statured lady came forth a wonderfully charming voice that mathed the soul. With personal songs that resonate with you and catchy piano riffs that stay with you all day,  we urge anyone during the festival to give her a look in and bask in the warming and charming atmosphere that this bubbly woman creates, Head to her Facebook to find out what she is up to throughout the Fringe.

Space Cat Pasta Bake

We couldn’t hit the Fringe and not see some stand up comedy, and from the title we were intrigued. 3 comedians took to the stage at 48 Below in front of less than a dozen people, so our expections were skeptical. All of which were smashed away. wp-1471283825865.jpgBob Munro took to the stage with his dry, dead pan comedy, rattling off joke after joke. His off kilter persona was a perfect start. Next up with the hilarious Micky Overman. Talking tales of her job as a nanny to her love for Harry Potter, we couldn’t breath with laughter. Her smiley personality shined through her whole set and we certainly embraced it. Last but certainly not least was the fantastic Ross Smith. He worked the small crowd and delivered every joke perfectly. His one on one interaction was on point and can certainly work with an eclectic audience! All 3 were very different but all fucking hilarious. A must see. Show times and venue can be found here.

Bad Girls Comedy Showcase

3 girls. 1 guy. A whole bunch of laughs. Short sets from some of the best talent the UK offers, Bad Girls Comedy Showcase left us wanting more. Gracing the stage at Whistlebinkies was Susie SteedSonja DoubledayLindsey DaviesSam Gore and Amy Gledhill. From making audience members be sucked up by the black hole to sloths, from bodied like lasagne to tinder tribulations, it was just fuck off funny. It left us wanting more of each act and a much needed trip to the loo. The line up for each night can be found here. It’s not to be missed.

It’s safe to say we’ve only tasted a miniscule amount of the Fringe, and will be hitting it up for the rest of the month. You cannot put a price on brilliant talent.

Check out our photo gallery from our trip through to the capital here.

Martyn & Mossy out xoxo


The Free Fringe: Extended Edition