#Playlist: Save A Life – How Music Helped Save Me…


   

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The idea for this post came about whilst I was contemplating creating the annual Christmas playlist I’ve done since I started Muzik Speaks back in 2015, but I quickly realised that I was purely doing it because of the time of year and with the thoughts that as a music blog, I should probably pump out something Christmassy.

Inside though, I’m just not feeling like celebrating Christmas this year and truth be told, I’ve been through a very dark patch for a few months now.

I began this blog as a lover of music (ever since I can remember) but also with the old saying in mind that “music speaks louder than words” and I truly believe that in many ways, it does…hence the blog name!

However, since September this year, I was propelled into an incredibly difficult place and since then my head has gone through a very dark, deeply depressive and isolated state and it’s only now, that I’m starting to see some distant, very small rays of light at the end of the long, outstretched tunnel ahead, but with those rays, they have brought just a scrap of positivity into my life.

During the period I mentioned, one of the first things to take a hit was my passion for music – something which has always been an obsession of mine, and looking back, that was a key indicator that I was suffering from depression, although I couldn’t recognise it at the time. I’ll be honest and say that at my lowest point, for a couple of weeks or so, I contemplated suicide almost every day, for what I was being put through and how I was being treated and self-harm was something that alleviated just a tiny bit of the desire/waves of compulsion I felt, to end my life. I wish I hadn’t I let myself get to that stage now, and would never advocate someone do that, but I share this as a plea for people to seek support from whoever and wherever they can, to help give them some much needed strength during their darkest times.

As cliché as it sounds, the song ‘1-800-273-8255’ by Logic featuring Alessia Cara and Khalid came into my life by happy accident and instantly made an impact on me – it truly kept me going for a couple of weeks straight.

And then slowly but surely over the last few weeks, my passion for music has been really reignited – by mainly angry/empowering rock songs at first; Thirty Seconds To Mars‘This Is War’ was on repeat for a few days and then more recently, Linkin Park‘s ‘Faint’. The tone to those two songs really helped me to channel the anger I was feeling about the place I was in and charged me up with a little renewed strength.

However once I’d started to get over the anger, I began to truly take time to reflect where I was at with my mental state and objectively begin to deal with my dark thoughts and the things that were eating me up inside. It was at that point that a whole host of songs began to play their part in reshaping me and helping me to truly confront with what I was going through.

That is why I decided to create a playlist that is very personal to me and filled it with the songs that had a hand in keeping me alive, helped me to regain a fraction of my normal self and begin to deal with things, each in their own unique way.

Save A Life - Colour

I guess in some way, I’m hoping that this playlist will reach even just one person who is going through a similar rough patch and that it helps them to fight back against their depression and regain their confidence and love of life, or that someone who has already come out the other side can relate to this and appreciate the songs for their unique qualities, thought-provoking lyrics and/or empowering styles.

I should add that I have been very lucky to have my partner, family, some good friends and even my dog (not that she’ll ever know it) to support me through this bleak time and they too have played a vital role in helping me get through this.

Additionally, I sought some counselling – at first it was over the phone but I quickly found that I was craving some human interaction and so went to meet a counsellor and that too has been invaluable to helping me, so I recognise that whilst it’s not entirely the music that has helped me, it was during the times, when I was alone, that this music kept me company, provided me with time to think and played a vital role in aiding me to recover some of my former mental well-being.

I just think that at this time of year, people can feel so alone and having been through what I have, I understand that not everything is joyous for everyone at Christmas time and so I am hoping this playlist will provide something different for people who are feeling down, depressed or suicidal and that it might provide some sort of pick-me-up that you might need or that my story or the music strike a chord with someone and give them something to stop and think about.

My message to anyone who is struggling is just know that things can get better if you hang in there. Believe in yourself and most importantly, take each day as it comes. Fill your time with things you enjoy doing, however small or simple – embrace them. Talk to whoever you feel comfortable talking to, whether it be friends, family or someone anonymous via a helpline – don’t bottle things up. Find joy in music you love, films you enjoy or any other things you like to do and try to take your mind off what you’re worrying about and try to envisage what a happier future would look like.

Finally, I really would like to take the time to ask you to donate to a good cause – if you are going through something similar to me, you have already been through it and managed to come out the other side or even just that you have enjoyed this playlist or felt something for my story, then please visit our JustGiving page www.justgiving.com/muzik-speaks or www.papyrus-uk.org/donate (please quote Muzik Speaks somewhere in your donation) and make a donation – £5 is enough to pay for one phone call, text or e-mail with a young person – you truly can help ‘Save a Life’.

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If you have a story you are willing to share or you want to discuss anything in this post, then please leave a comment; I would just ask that you remain sensitive with what you write on this post please. I also urge you that if you yourself are feeling suicidal or you are concerned about someone, to please call PAPYRUS on 0800 068 4141, text 07786 209697 or e-mail pat@papyrus-uk.org – whilst I am always happy to talk, I’m not a trained professional but people at PAPYRUS are, and will do their best to help.


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HAPPY 10th ANNIVERSARY AVA!!! #ThrowbackThursday: Angels & Airwaves – ‘The Adventure’


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Happy 10th Anniversary to Angels & Airwaves!

This is the perfect #ThrowbackThursday post! It was exactly 10 years ago, this week (well, yesterday to be exact) that Angels & Airwaves released their debut single, ‘The Adventure’.

The single marked the official start of Tom DeLonge‘s latest project (alongside David Kennedy, Atom Willard and Ryan Sinn), which has captured the hearts of many. I can’t believe 10 years have passed!

The song has been featured on several games and been used in several television programmes, including a trailer for Smallville.

The band’s imagery was a blend of space and World War II, which married with their unique and epic sound, made for an incredibly cinematic experience. The music video is perfect for the sound of the song, and if you haven’t seen it, you most definitely need to watch it, below.

Are you already an AVA fan? Have you been a fan since the release of this song? Which has been your favourite album/song of theirs? Got any similar #ThrowbackThursday songs for us? Please leave a comment below or chat to us about the awesomeness that is AVA via our social media accounts.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘The Adventure’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-adventure/id153125136?i=153125151


#Playlist: October 2015


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Hey-hey fellow Speakerz!

It’s been another amazing month, full of wonderful music!

We’ve eased you into the week with songs by Chicane, The Japanese House, The Fray and Years & Years, brought you new music from Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, K Stewart, Sia and Justin Bieber, thrown back your musical memories with Meat Loaf, Sweet Female Attitude, Bjork and Sam Sparro and brought you some unusual songs by INHEAVEN, V1BE and Låpsley.

Chicane shared our post and we’ve been lining up some interviews for November – it’s been an amazing month and I can’t wait for November to start!

We hope you have enjoyed our song choices throughout October and you can find the Spotify and YouTube playlists below!

Please keep sharing our posts and sharing songs with us!


OUR CONTINUED AIM

We’d like to ask you, to go ahead and ‘like’ our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/muzikspeaks) and ‘follow’ us on Twitter (www.twitter.com/muzik_speaks). Then if you could please post a status or send a tweet to your followers and friends to ask them to check us out, we’d be really grateful! We want to grow this community and we honestly can’t do it without your support!

Lastly, please, please respond to our posts on Facebook or leave comments on each of our blog posts with your own tracks for each of the daily themes – we want you to share what you’re listening to because we love music as much as you, and we really enjoy finding out about new tunes. Thanks so much!


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#WildCardWednesday: Angels & Airwaves – ‘Into The Night’ & ‘…Of Nightmares’ Review


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Angels & Airwaves are undoubtedly my all-time favourite band and Tom DeLonge is an inspiration to me! The band has taken on many forms over the past (nearly) decade but each incarnation has been brilliant and all part of the bigger picture.

Tom DeLonge has clear visions for his art and that makes him admirable – his idea for the whole Poet Anderson universe has been brewing for several years and its all coming to fruition in many interesting ways.

First came the animated short film, ‘Poet Anderson: The Dream Walker’ with its accompanying album, ‘The Dream Walker’ there was also a trilogy of prequel comics, leading to the events which take place in the short film, but more recently, comes the first in a planned trilogy of novels, ‘Poet Anderson…Of Nightmares’ with its accompanying EP of the same name.

The EP contains 4 brand new Angels & Airwaves tracks, including ‘Into The Night’, which is a classically epic tune; big chorus, euphoric instrumentation and Tom’s instantly recognisable vocals, which is our #WildCardWednesday track this week.

The novel is amazing too – co-written by Tom himself and New York Times Bestseller, Suzanne Young, it is a young adult novelisation of the Poet Anderson universe and it is sensational. I may well be biased due to my love of AVA, but it is a very captivating story. The events take us through Jonas/Poet Anderson’s life; the death of his parents and loss of his brother to the dream world, through to his learning of the ins and outs of the dream world itself. Along the way he meets Dream Walkers and is tempted by the villain, REM. The book is actually remarkable as it allows you to gain a much better insight into Poet’s universe and when you re-watch the animated short, it feels like you have much more of an idea about what’s going on. It allows you to connect much more intimately with the characters and it has unquestionably left me with a desire for the next two novels to be made…soon please! 😉

It would appear that the next step for Tom DeLonge and the Poet Anderson universe, is for a longer animated film to be made and even a feature-length live-action film. Needless to say, I am very excited about these things to come and just hope that Angels & Airwaves will continue for many years to come – I’ll be with them all the way.

*Ponders to self ~ Hmm…now I just need to find a way to get involved with these projects somehow!*

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Into The Night’ is available for download from iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/into-the-night/id1030931428?i=1030931970

‘Poet Anderson…Of Nightmares’ (the novel) can be downloaded from:


#Two4Tunesday: Angels & Airwaves – ‘Bullets In The Wind’ and Years & Years – ‘King’

My word, we’ve got two fantastic songs for you this week – one from my all-time favourite band, Angels & Airwaves and the other from newcomers, Years & Years, with their recent, chart-topping track.

Angels & Airwaves

First up, Angels & Airwaves! Since they’re my favourite band, I’m surprised I’ve gone this long without featuring them!

What’s not to love about this band?! I love Blink-182, but I love this band more! Tom DeLonge captured my attention, back in 2006, when he launched this band with a heart-felt spoken trailer and accompanying World War II/Space imagery alongside their euphoric songs. I have been following them since their inception and seen them every time they’ve toured the UK. This particular song, taken from their most recent release, The Dream Walker, sees the band move into a new sound and away from their previously enchanted sounds, into a more indie vibe, but yet they’re still epic!

Tell us what you think of this particular track and please check out the rest of their releases.

Angels & Airwaves – ‘Bullets In The Wind’


Years & Years Banner

To me, it seems that these guys have appeared out of nowhere! I remember seeing them as a featured artist on iTunes and ever since then, they topped the charts with this track! Quite a calm, electronica/indie vibe with this particular song and the singer Olly Alexander’s (also known for his acting in programmes such as Skins) vocals make it interesting and unique. What do you think of it? Personally, I’m intrigued to hear what their future releases will hold.

Years & Years – ‘King’


Happy Two4Tunesday to one and all! Which 2 songs are you loving to share this week?

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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