#Review: Hayley Kiyoko – Expectations


   

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Muzik Speaks Loves Atlantic Records - SmallerHayley Kiyoko is best known for being an American singer-songwriter, actress and dancer. Since starting out as an actress, at a young age, Kiyoko has built up quite a name for herself, both as an all-round entertainer and as an LGBTQ+ activist. Now, with a string of successful EPs and singles under her belt, 2018 sees the release of her long-awaited debut album, Expectations. Here’s what we think…

Hayley Kiyoko - Expectations

This is an album that finds credible, deep songwriting merging with contemporary pop, addressing a range of mature issues, head on. It’s an album packed full of heavy bass lines, quirky synth sounds, upbeat dance rhythms and all-out catchy pop melodies.

The funky Charlie Puth-esque bass opening of first single, ‘Feelings’ sees Kiyoko give a vulnerable account about how intensely she falls for someone. It’s catchy but understated pop.

Then you’ve got ‘What I Need’ featuring Kehlani, which has R&B flavours mixed with current tropical house vibes and it’s all about being there for someone who’s uncertain about making a commitment.

Other great tracks include; the whispery and subtle ‘Sleepover’ which has a barely noticeable but very beautiful, underlying guitar melody; ‘Curious’ which is undoubtedly the most catchy and most pop track on the record (and my personal favourite) that is about questioning the seriousness of a girl’s relationship and ‘He’ll Never Love You (HNLY)’ with its great guitar lines and reggae feel.

This is a modern pop record that has been crafted well and sees Kiyoko shed her Disney days and address mature issues close to her heart.

There are also similarities with other artists; ‘Under The Blue/Take Me In’ is like a more mainstream pop version of a Lana Del Rey track but a more credible version of Taylor Swift, ‘Mercy/Gatekeeper’ starts out with echoing and rather trippy, distorted vocals but during the second half, becomes quite random and a little Beyoncé-esque and ‘Palm Dreams’ is very beachy pop, a bit like something by Geowulf.

There’s no doubt that there are strong themes throughout the album; relationships (particularly with girls questioning their sexuality) and inner conflicts Kiyoko herself has faced. The level of sass on the album demonstrates her self-confidence, though at times, the reoccurring topic of girls questioning their sexuality or lusting after other girls, without being able to commit, can become repetitive. However, that’s not to say she isn’t doing something great for the genre and her attempts to normalise lesbian relationships within pop music are fantastic; it just seems to be a very strong theme to the album.

The album starts off very strong and maintains its strength for the majority, but the last couple of tracks do feel a little flat. Overall though, this is a modern pop record that has been crafted well and sees Kiyoko shed her Disney days and address mature issues, close to her heart. It also has a certain excitement to it that could be the start of something big for her! I’m sure this will be a huge success and will take her career to new heights.

Rating


‘Expectations’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/expectations/1332078481


Expectations on Spotify

Curious (Official Video)

Feelings (Official Video)

Sleepover (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review! What do you think of this band’s Fiction Act EP? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment below or via our social media.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other reviews here:

Muzik Speaks Album Reviews


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#MellowMonday: Muzik Speaks’ 1st Birthday Playlist

Here’s a playlist of all the #MellowMonday songs we’ve featured during our first year…enjoy!


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This week, Muzik Speaks turns 1 year old and to celebrate, we’re giving you a themed playlist, for each day this week. The playlist will contain all of the songs we’ve featured on our blog during the past year, all themed around the corresponding day.

Today, it’s #MellowMonday and our playlist includes:

  1. Chris Malinchak – So Good To Me
  2. Coldplay – Magic
  3. OneRepublic – Can’t Stop
  4. Foster The People – Pumped Up Kicks
  5. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – Same Love
  6. Miley Cyrus – Adore You
  7. You+Me – Unbeliever
  8. The Barr Brothers – Even The Darkness Has Arms
  9. ODESZA – All We Need featuring Shy Girls
  10. Passenger – David
  11. Lucy Rose – Our Eyes
  12. Shura – 2Shy
  13. Jesse Boykins III – Plain
  14. Grimes – Entropy
  15. Sigma – Changing featuring Paloma Faith (GoldSmyth Edition)
  16. The Pierces – I’ll Be Dreaming
  17. Janet Jackson – No Sleeep
  18. Chris Brown – Liquor
  19. Randy Newman – You’ve Got A Friend In Me
  20. Lana Del Rey – Once Upon A Dream
  21. Vindata – All I Really Need
  22. Sam Feldt – Show Me Love featuring Kimberly Anne
  23. Lost Frequencies – Are You With Me
  24. Etta James – At Last
  25. Hayley Kiyoko – Girls Like Girls
  26. Justin Bieber – What Do You Mean?
  27. Timeflies – Stuck With Me
  28. Ryan Adams – Bad Blood
  29. Chicane – Ibiza Strings
  30. The Japanese House – Cool Blue
  31. The Fray – How To Save A Life
  32. Years & Years – Eyes Shut
  33. Celtic Woman – The Voice
  34. Ella Eyre – We Don’t Have To Take Our Clothes Off
  35. Cher – You Take It All
  36. Said The Sky – Nostalgia featuring Missio
  37. Will Young – What The World Needs Now Is Love
  38. Hearts & Colors – Fireflies
  39. Alex Parks – Get Out
  40. Snakehips – All My Friends featuring Tinashe & Chance The Rapper
  41. Maroon 5 – Animals (Gryffin Remix)
  42. Yuna – Tourist
  43. Sia – Breathe Me
  44. Timbaland – Don’t Get No Betta featuring Mila J
  45. Shura – Touch featuring Talib Kweli
  46. Lisa Goe – Still In Love

If you want to download the songs and use a custom cover for them, here’s one we’ve made for you 🙂

SONY DSC

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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Follow the playlist – https://open.spotify.com/user/muzik5peaks/playlist/5n77gdqWl0MDJ87zxNLxcz

#Playlist: August 2015

Willkommen ‘Speakerz’!

So sorry it’s late but after a short break, here’s August’s monthly YouTube and Spotify playlist!

August brought you some great throwbacks by HelloGoodbye, Jaimeson and Shanice; mellowed some Mondays with Etta James, Lost Frequencies and Hayley Kiyoko and brought you a whole range of new music from Digital Farm Animals, Sigala, Prince Royce and Pia Mia.

More than anything, we hope that you enjoyed the songs we brought you throughout August 2015’s posts and we thank you for your continued views and support! – Our apologies if any of the tracks are missing from the Spotify playlist – some of them may not have been released yet or some may have been removed from Spotify by the artist/band.

Note: You can view the whole YouTube playlist by using the dropdown menu at the top corner of the video, or skip a song using the ‘next’ button.

NEXT MONTH:

Next month, we’ve definitely got another Skype interview and of course we’ll be bringing you many more epic tunes!


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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#MellowMonday: Hayley Kiyoko – ‘Girls Like Girls’

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Known for her acting roles in Disney’s Wizards of Waverly PlaceInsidious: Chapter 3 and CSI: CyberHayley Kiyoko has also begun working on her singing career.

Although ‘Girls Like Girls’ has not been officially released as a single, this song has had a video released, and it’s a great one at that! The song is intriguingly beautiful but the video is incredible. Co-directed by herself and Austin S. Winchell, it tells the story of a girl who falls for her best friend (another girl) who has a boyfriend; it’s a captivating piece of art and well worth a watch!

What do you think of the video? Did you enjoy it? Have you seen any videos similarly emotive to this? Please share them in a comment below.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Girls Like Girls can be downloaded from iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/girls-like-girls/id959739340?i=959739492