KSSU’s Study Tips for Finals


Hey Readers! Read below for some study tips from everyone here at KSSU and ace those finals. 🙂

  1. Listen to what your body is telling you! If your eyelids feel heavy, take a power nap. Studying is pointless if you and your body are not in a position to retain the information you need to learn.
  2. Get out of the space that you’re most comfortable in! Go to a nice coffee shop (Philz Coffee, Identity, Tupelo) or to the 4th floor of the library. Just get out of that bed.
  3. Make sure you keep snacks with you (that you will actually eat) and that you’re hydrating. Opt for water before anything else.
  4. Give yourself breaks and don’t overwhelm yourself. You deserve that 15 minute walk, 45 minute nap or 30 minutes of your favorite TV show.
  5. Speak out loud instead of reading in your head. This improves your memory and you’re 50% more likely to remember important information.
  6. Use the SelfControl app to block distracting apps and sites. Create boundaries for yourself!
  7. Don’t stay up all night before your exams, study as much as possible but make sure you’re getting enough beautyrest.
  8. Lastly, listen to KSSU’s Picks on Spotify! Updated bi-weekly every Thursday. Motivational tracks, R&B and lowkey instrumentals included.

Everyone here at KSSU hopes you have a relaxing, enjoyable and inspiring break. See you next semester!

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KSSU’s Picks of the Month


Hey Everyone! KSSU is implementing a new series starting this month! You’ll see cool new artists, musicians, movies / tv shows, events and video games in this series. Hopefully you’ll find your new favorite artist or movie 🙂

Mindhunter (on Netflix) – A murder mystery highlighting the murders and serial killers that influenced the early years of the BAU (Behavioral Analysis Unit) at the FBI. Main characters Holden Ford and Bill Tench go through trials and tribulations throughout the show before a breakthrough after interviewing imprisoned serial killers. If you like Criminal Minds and the aesthetic of the 70’s, you’ll love Mindhunter. 

Season 9 of Curb Your Enthusiasm (on HBO and Amazon Video) – We’re highlighting this show because another hilarious season has come out after 6 years! Curb your Enthusiasm is about the trying times of getting older in the age of a new generation. Larry David plays himself as an angry, frustrated New Yorker that is very similar to Seinfeld’s hilarious and cynical character, George Constanza. 

Snow Aalegra – Snoh Aalegra is an up and coming Swedish singer. Her vocals were sampled on Drake’s playlist project More Time. Her vocals were taken from her track Time that was released earlier this year. She explains in an interview with The Fader that this song is about her relationship with her late father and the lack of time she had with him.

 Ines J. @A.Creature (on Instagram) – Ines goes by the Instagram handle @a.creature. She is an abstract artist that ventures into watercolor, paints and drawing. Her work is super inspiring! She makes a lot of content on the subject of feeling lost in the world and unsure of her place. Go support her art at: instagram.com/a.creature

Tegan And Sara Present The Con X: Covers – This covers album is definitely one of our favorites at KSSU. With covers by Cyndi Lauper, Haley Williams of Paramore, Shura, Grimes & HANA. Listen to this and you’ll reminisce on early 2000’s Tegan and Sara and Paramore. 

Majid Jordan : The Space Between [Album Review]


Majid_jordan_the_space_between

Majid Jordan is one of the rising acts from Octobers Very Own music label. The label is headed by Drake, Noah “40” Shebib and Oliver El-Khatib. The roster includes such names as PARTYNEXTDOOR and Roy Woods. The roster is full of heavy hitters who specialized mostly in Hip-Hop and RnB. Majid Jordan is compromised of Majid Al-Maskati and Jordan Ullman. The duo was known for their atmospheric and darker tones of RnB. The basslines and smooth vocals usually float really well and have given Majid Jordan a unique sound.

Their sophomore album The Space Between features a more pop and spatial sound than their previous releases. The album features mostly productions by Jordan Ullman with a track featuring in-house producer nineteen85 but also features PARTYNEXTDOOR and DVSN. The sound is very spacious with deep percussions and smooth basslines.

Tracks like “Gave your love away” was featured on OVO’s radio station previous to the release and it was a much-needed hype to the album release. The smooth melodic vocals, deep rhythms, and smooth sounds make this a standout on the album. Then you have songs like “Body Talk” that features a Dembow percussive rhythm heard in reggeaton or dancehall. The song itself creates a slow and intimate vibe that increases pace as the song progresses. The perfect song for a slow dance with a lover. There is no doubt that “One I Want” featuring PARTYNEXTDOOR is the single that will be a commercial success. The song features a slow bounce synth and soft bass kicks; then you have PARTYNEXTDOOR singing the chorus and opening verse. Majid eventually compliments the first verse with his and amplifies the song with his ability to hit high notes. A clear love song that has everything for a pop RnB song.

Support from label mate DVSN on “My Imagination” give a simplified and yet complex song of spatial synths and bouncy percussions that compliment the singers’ smooth vocals throughout the song. Overall the album is an evolution of Majid Jordans’ sound and shows some growth. The lack of features from labelmates suggests that Majid Jordan is ready to make their own way out of the shadows of Drake and Noah Shebib. They create their own unique sound that complimentary reflects OVO’s sad boy RnB sound.  There is much growth in their latest project, but could their sound maintain this continuous evolution that reflects spatial sound and lyrics that reflect introverted thoughts? The album is not a party anthem album; it’s not even really a single loaded album. It’s an album with a theme that correlates to each continuous track that could stand alone on its own accord, but you wouldn’t want to do that. You want to start from beginning to end and go through this journey of emotions, thoughts, and reflections that are present throughout the album.

 

 

///Victor

Favorite Spooky Song


Michael-Jackson-Thriller-3d-promo-billboard-1548One of my favorite spooky songs is Michael Jackson’s classic song Thriller. Every Halloween I have to hear the song to get into my spooky Halloween spirit. Without that song my Halloween will not be complete. This is something that transformed into my yearly tradition as I became older. However, it was not always like this when I was younger.

When I was growing up the video of Thriller used to come on television often. I used to be so afraid of the video that I had nightmares for until almost two years ago from watching scenes of the video. Not even the full thing. For those individuals who are familiar with the video, you are aware of how scary the scenes are. Michael Jackson has zombies as a crew and they were very realistic. What really got to me is the last scene of the video when Michael Jackson looked into the screen and his eyes changed with a guy in the background with laughing with an evil humor. As you get older it the entire video is not so bad to watch, but it could still give you the chills.

A way that I got over my fear of the video was because of my cousin. One day we were watching Thriller’s video. I was turning my head to not be afraid. I hear my cousin moving, and as I looked up he was dancing. I realized that the video was just dancing and having a good time. So we replayed the video and watched it from the beginning. I was laughing at the the beginning of the video when Michael Jackson was in the movie theater eating popcorn, smiling, and enjoying the movie. That is my favorite part of the video. Then as the song continued my cousin showed me the dance moves to the song and we were dancing along with Michael Jackson and the zombies. We had a great time. After that I don’t pay too much attention to the video, but listen to the song and try to practice dance moves to the rhythm. That’s was the greatest way to get over my fear, was to enjoy the video instead of watching the details. Just like any other song, enjoying the song is better than picking out the flaws of a song.

Without my cousin I would have never gotten over my fear of the video, and I would have never learned to love the song. Especially on the day of Halloween. I still get afraid from the last scene of the video with Michael Jackson’s eyes changing, but my Halloween day will never feel complete until I hear that song. I am honestly unsure if that song was made for the day of Halloween, but that song is classic to play for the day of Halloween.

I hope you all enjoyed reading about my favorite song, and how I over came my fear of watching the video. I am sure that there are plenty of individuals who witnessed a fear of the video as I did. But somehow enjoy hearing the song on Halloween day. That is all for this post. But I will like to end this with saying one thing.

Enjoy your Halloween day, stay safe, and play Michael Jackson’s song Thriller as a memory of me. Yay Halloween!!

Spooky Times-An Album Review


downloadWelcome again to spooky time—the one time of year society encourages the exploration into scarier things. This year, I have something special for you. Not just another scary movie review or haunted house breakdown, and for the love of all that is holy, this blog is going to have ZERO to do with Stranger Things.

No my friends…today, we will be exploring spooky tunes, where it’s all about the spook, the whole spook and nothing but the spook. If you reach deep down into the obscurest of genres you may stumble onto the delightfully haunting sound that permeates Trip Hop and none have more trip in their hop than the English electronic band Portishead. Straight out of Bristol, the band delivers a devastatingly dark sound punctuated with the eerie bleating of the Hammond organ and a clever use of samples including everything from War to Isaac Hayes.

In 1994, Portishead’s debut album Dummy took spooky to a whole new level and nothing as of yet has rivaled it. Looking for something to croon in the background of your life throughout the entire month of October as you wait impatiently for Halloween? This would be the album for you.

The lead vocalist Beth Gibbons sends her voice to slither down your spine, chilling your very bones with a downright creepy sound that grips your attention, forcing your body to sway. The music video for the second track on the album “Sour Times” actually features spooky scenes from a short film made by the band (now that is dedication).

Lyrically hypnotizing, Portishead sings of forgotten dreams and imparts sage advice.

“You don’t get something for nothing…gotta try a little harder”

Strongly recommend tracks: “Sour Times”, “It Could Be Sweet” and “Roads”.

Bands with similar sound: Massive Attack, Radio Head, and Bjork

Another Distraction’s New Album: Fragments


AnotherDistraction-Fragments-AlbumArtHey there folks, I’m DJ Rosie from Film Frequencies, on air Wednesdays from 12-1, and today I am going to be reviewing a brand new album from Another Distraction titled Fragments.
Before I begin, I’d like to put you in the headspace that I am currently existing in. I went out and saw the new Kingsman movie, Kingsman: The Golden Circle. Although the film was great I decided to make the fateful decision to drink 48 fluid ounces of Cherry Coke. I assumed that I could handle such a drink. As I have now learned, I cannot.
I got home and immediately felt sick, and then went into a sugar induced coma for five hours. I have now awoken and decided, “Hey, now is a wonderful time to write a review of a loud rock CD!” Let’s hope I was right.
After looking at the CD, there are six songs on it, and after some research, this is an EP released on September 8th, 2017. The total duration of the album is 22 minutes and 3 seconds. Not a bad listen if you’re on your way to work or want to show your friends. I personally don’t have a long attention span, so this length is perfect for me.
The first song is called ‘Direction Define’. The song is about, as I interpret it, someone being isolated by everyone and left to fend for themselves. Through all of it they find themselves, they define their own direction. Something about the tempo of the song makes you feel like you’ve listened to it before, but not in a bad way, it just feels nostalgic. If this first song is any indication of what is in store for the rest of them album, I am very enthusiastic about the rest of this album.
The next song, song two on the list, is called ‘Scene Kid’s Afraid To Leave The Scene’. This song is all about feeling in the moment. The chorus is “Let it go, let it go/ Tell me something I don’t know”. This song really makes you feel in the moment, and reaches out to the scene kid in all of us. I can completely imagine being in the crowd at this concert and excited to be part of something.
The third song is called ‘Use Your Words’. When this song begins, you can tell it is different the the previous two. It starts with a short instrumental, and the words are a lot angrier. It’s a lot of hurt, all about how someone hurt them and comments “It’s easy for you”. This hits notes a lot harder than the other two songs, and shows another side of the band that I am excited to see.
Track 4 is called ‘Betting On Infinity’. It begins with a tad bit of shouting, leaning towards my classic idea of loud rock. That theme continues through the song slightly, but the rest of the song is more similar to track 1 and 2, where it is a sadder, more classic type of punk (and slightly pop, just slightly) rock.
The fifth song is called ‘Where I Reside’, and it begins with a darker tone, with wording that leans towards more emo. There are sections of the song that have just the singer and drummer playing, and it helps pace the song a lot better than if it were to keep a similar pace the whole time. It gives the listener something to break up all of the songs and refocus and regain the interest.
The final song is the one I am most excited about. The title is ‘For the Love of Sarah’. I don’t know why, but I absolutely love when songs have the names of people in them. It has a voyeuristic feel that is very intriguing. It begins very softly, and with the line ‘This is not where I imagined we would be” which I found appropriately ironic, as my first thought when hearing the song was “Is that a acoustic guitar?”, which, as the lead singer stated, isn’t what I imagined in a loud rock album.
And wow, it surprised me. A female singer, who I learned is named Sara Anderson, comes in about a minute into the song. The duet is something I wasn’t expected, but absolutely love. This song is mostly acoustic and not at all loud rock, until about another minute in, and then the rest of the band comes in. It’s such a fun and wonderful song, I definitely wasn’t expecting this but it lived up to the hype that the title set for me.
Overall, this is a great album. Most of it –excluding the last song, that one just made me excited and a bit sad — was very nostalgic for me. About five years ago, this was the exact music that I was listening to and it took me right back to that. In this album, every instrument is very distinct, which is something I appreciate in loud rock. I know that I have listen to other bands where I can’t quite tell the difference between what is playing when because everything is so, well, loud. I’m so happy that I’ve been able to listen to this album and I am so very excited to see what Another Distraction has in store next!

Last Flowers – Love Album Review


a4100428117_10.jpgLast Flowers is a musical band that started up in the year 2010; beginning their musical career with two alternative/indie albums EP One and From A Piano Room. After a 4 year hiatus, Last Flowers has released their third album Love which debuted April 20, 2017. Written and and sung by Benjamin H. Lemons, this new album is quite unique to his works from the other albums.

When I first saw the album Love, I soon became in love (no pun intended) with it. What first caught my eye of Love, was the album cover(the image featured); to the illustration of the man and woman together on the front cover, to the hand-lettering of the title and songs titles on the back, to the color scheme of red and white, to just basically everything of the album was physically aesthetic to me.  It gives off such a beautiful, artsy vibe that reminds  me of the movies 500 Days of Summer and The Fault in Our Stars. 

I listened to the album in my car mostly because I don’t have own a CD player. I would listen to it on my way to work and on my way to school.The next thing I knew when I was listening to the album, I was entrapped, I loved it. ( Even now, when I am writing this post, I am listening to the Love album for references and still loving it!) The first track, Good Morning, is a poem being with an instrumental background. This caught me off guard because music albums do not tend to do this but nonetheless I really enjoyed it. My personal favorite tracks were 4. Joker and 6. On Your Own; the sounds of the songs and the lyrics made me feel calm and serene.  The song Joker, begins with a piano opening that also reminds me of John Lennon’s Imagine and continues to do so throughout the whole song.On Your Own begins with an acoustic guitar opening, then transitions with Benjamin H. Lemons singing that also brings in the underlying strums of an electric guitar. I really liked this song because it started off very calm in the beginning with the acoustic guitar and gradually builds up to using the electric guitar with drum beats. This song reminded me of the transition from being a boy and becoming a man (a stepping up of coolness or maturity).

The rest of the album was also very lovely with the sounds of guitar and piano being the main instruments of this album which do make a really good combo. Not only was there acoustic guitar, but also the electric guitar and also drums.  This album reminded me of bands such as Sales and Plain White T’s because of the rhythms and lyrics of love. I could see myself lying in bed and playing the album while doing some homework or when I need to just sit and think to myself.

You can check out Last Flowers and have a listen to the Love album on their website: http://www.lastflowersmusic.com/

 

Fright Night: Diplo and Excision


squarefrightnightThere are very few electronic music events in Sacramento, but Midnite events are spearheading the front to change that. This Halloween season, Midnite Events will be producing their Halloween Massive known as Fright NightThe lineup features Diplo who is often known as the frontmen of Major Lazer, as well as the owner of the eclectic label Mad Decent. Diplo could run a festival on his own, but fortunately, he has Excision to run the night with. Excision is known for his hard-hitting basslines and aggressive Dubstep sound. Excision visuals are also one of the most intense and electrifying visuals in the game right now.  So make sure to get your tickets for Fright Night this October 27th. Buy Tickets [HERE]

www.facebook.com/MidniteEvents
www.instagram.com/MidniteEvents

Ashes by NateWantsToBattle: Song Review


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WARNING: Spoilers!!!

 

You ever have a song that you listen to one time, and end up keeping it on repeat until you get sick of it? Well, I’ve been a victim of this ever since I heard the song Ashes, by NateWantsToBattle.

Let me tell you a little about the artist, first.

His full name is Nathan Sharp, and he creates song covers. I’ve been listening to him for about a year now, and I haven’t hated a single song he’s remade. He is from Richmond, Virginia, and specializes in Alt/Indie and Rock songs.

This song- Ashes- in particular gives me chills because the lyrics are a mix of creepy yet have a beat that makes me want to head-bang in my car and sing out loud with the windows rolled down on the freeway.

I also really love this song because it’s actually about a video game. The game is called Undertale, and-for those who don’t know- it’s a “Choice” game.

This means that whatever choices you make in the game will determine how the game is played and how it ends. It can be played on PC, and is hours of fun with a very dark undertone. If you like that sort of thing.

One of the endings is called- SPOILER- “Genocide Route”, which can only be achieved if you kill everyone without mercy.

Pretty depressing, huh? But I promise; it’s a good game!

Anyways, one of the lines in the song is, “Made your decision now you’re gonna have a bad time.”

This line particularly stuck with me because one of the characters you meet and befriend is a skeleton named Sans, along with his brother Papyrus. Sans is meant to be the comic relief of the game; cracking jokes and making horrible puns. When Sans gets upset or angry, he tells others that they will have a “bad time.”

Near the end of the game, once you’ve killed everyone in Undertale, your last opponent is Sans.

In short, a talking flower manipulates you to kill all your friends.

NWTB’s song Ashes is about how you became this monster who only kills for enjoyment, rather than trying to see the good in people.

I honestly thought this song would be used in more AMVs on Youtube, but I wanted it for myself and ended up buying it on iTunes instead.

Anyways, I’ve had this song on repeat for the past 3 weeks, put it as my ringtone for everyone in my contacts, and made it my alarm song.

I regret nothing!

To further explain how much I enjoy this song, another like is, “And in the end they’re gonna fall and fall to your hand.”

This line is a direct description of the manipulative, talking flower- who’s name is Flowey. He tried very hard to get you to kill everything and everyone, but you do have the option not to listen to him.

If you enjoy listening to songs that sound like they would be played at the end-credits of games, I recommend listening to NateWantsToBattle. He’s a really great artist, and I hope this review has intrigued you even a little bit to go have a listen.

The Sacramento Sound-A Local Band Review: Face the Horizon and Occupy the Trees


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The Sacramento Sound-A Local Band Review
Face the Horizon and Occupy the Trees

Sacramento boasts of being the birthplace of greats like Deftones, Cake, and Tesla, to name a few. If I try hard enough I can actually picture them on the cluttered stages of small suburban venues, fighting to differentiate themselves from the unceasing shuffle of sound. I am more than excited to be a part of sharing the beginnings of what I hope are the next generation of greats, starting with two bands I have some serious admiration for.

Occupy the Trees: A fun loving Sacramento Alt-rock band with curious deviations into the world of ska with a dash of skate punk

Charlie Sand-vocals guitar
Parker Barnes-lead guitar
Chris London-Bass
Nathaniel Wilson-Drums

Occupy the Trees held an opening slot in a recent local showcase at the Boardwalk; tasked with setting the tone, Charlie Sand and the band did not disappoint. They took to the stage with a gusto born of genuine boyish enthusiasm and it didn’t take long for the energy to catch on. Lyrically the band delivers an entertaining and relatable slice-of-life story full of satirical anecdotes. Sand on lead vocals has a catchy, adaptable style complemented well by a solid walking bass line and whimsical guitar riffs. Favorites of the night were the songs Words Like Bullets and Sorry, the latter was a blast live as the whole band joined forces to get the audience to sing along. Their musical style ranges from an upbeat punk/ska hybrid reminiscent of Sublime to the fast-paced melodic sounds of the early 90’s. Check them out on sound cloud!

https://soundcloud.com/occupythetrees

Face the Horizon: All the things you like from a heavy-experimental sound and none of the things you don’t

Robert Lynn-Vocals
Hal Trevor Williams-Guitar
Keywan Ryland-Drums
Chris Crimson-Bass

Front man Robert is right at home on stage, his charisma and obvious enthusiasm translates to the role of an entertainer well. He’s something like a heavy metal MJ, the passion for his craft is evident in every exaggerated move. Big kudo’s to the nod they gave the late Chris Cornell, pulling off an exceptional cover of “Like a Stone”. Cornell’s renowned range is not an easy one to replicate, let alone pull off with a grit and passion worthy of the man’s legacy. From twangy guitar solos and perfectly timed drum fills to the funk-rock heartbeat of the bass, Face the Horizon succeeds in putting the elements of their music together in a way that complement not competes. All in all they have made my ‘must see’ list and I encourage you to check them out when given the chance, you won’t be sorry. Check out a Face the Horizon original, “Cutthroat” on YouTube!

https://youtu.be/7JTubi_mOVk

-DJ Chy

 

 

 

 

 

 

p.s.

The journey each of us takes with music is an intensely personal one, my hope for this series is not to take away from your journey but to share my own. I will work hard to cultivate objectivity in the hope that it lends creditability to my opinion. But it’s just an opinion.