Welcome all to 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿, a series of weekly reviews by Charles Connolly - an artist in his own right. Here, Charles delves into the greatest brand new singles brought to you by the best unsigned artists on our electrifying and eclectic set of 𝙉𝙚𝙬 𝘼𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙨𝙩 𝙎𝙥𝙤𝙩𝙡𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩 playlists.
𝙋𝙖𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙩𝙞𝙘 𝙋𝙖𝙧𝙖𝙙𝙞𝙨𝙚 - 𝘾𝙃𝙑𝙍𝙇𝙄 𝘽𝙇𝙑𝘾𝙆
Charles wastes your time out of vengeance…
Would you like some amusement? Would you like to laugh at me and my stupid life? Then let’s begin. I think perhaps a lot of people think I have an idyllic life, free from responsibilities (like children - or blobs), mortgage payments, debt, drug addiction, alcoholism, danger, natural disasters, war and pets. But this “idyllic life” of mine is more an idyllic lie. Correction, all of the above is true, but it is not tantamount to paradise. Sure, my job is pretty much my dream job. Sure, I live on the top floor of a lovely house built in 1890, in a lovely leafy area of London. Sure, I live with my girlfriend, and our relationship is just peachy, to say the least. But there are things that make life simply exhausting. The kind of things that would make a stronger, braver (stupider?) man punch a hole in the wall. The kind of things that MOST of us have to deal with.
Two Fridays ago I was attempting to set up the brand new NAS Radio on the New Artist Spotlight website. For this, I needed access to a particular website. I could not access it. Everyone I spoke to could, but I couldn’t. While I am not exactly that technologically minded, I wouldn’t consider myself technologically challenged. I am logical, and I have the internet (or at least I DID - more on that in a bit). When I have a problem, I hunker down and try my damnedest to get to the bottom of it. Firewall? Nope. Proxies? Nope. Off and on again? Numerous times. Checked the router, checked security settings. Look, I don’t pretend to know what a firewall is, but seeing as it was off, I did make sure to have the fire extinguisher at the ready at all times. For around 6 or 7 hours I tried everything I could think of, and everything else the internet spat at me. I was beaten. I simply gave in and gave up. A few days later I casually and with uncrossed fingers went to the unworking website just to see if it had magically fixed itself. Yeah. Like that would ever happen. It magically fixed itself. The bastard worked!! Although this was technically good news, I felt jipped, used, swindled and taken for a ride. 7 hours of that Friday (basically the whole day) was completely wasted because of a technical GLITCH! And is this sort of thing an extreme rarity…? HAH! This is normality. My energy company went bust last year. This happens every couple of years. So every time, I am automatically passed over to another useless company that will no doubt go bust in a couple of years. The first week with them started with an error. A bill that should have been zero, but was in fact £210. They admitted the error within a day, but it took 10 weeks to get this sorted on my account. This is the age of “instant”, yet it was 10 weeks of me constantly calling them and wasting hour upon hour over their own error. That was the end of last year. Since then their incompetence has not even slowed. I don’t even receive bills from them (the one thing you can usually rely on - bills). Every time I paid a bill there was apparently more money owing. After my most recent spate of calls, they informed me that they completely understand my confusion in there being two figures at all times, and that the figure regularly increased and decreased by the day. Understanding my confusion and apologising doesn’t help the problem. So I dropped another £200 to settle the bill. The following day I checked the account - another £70 owed! Should I just divert ALL my income to them from now on? Eat my food! Wear my shoes! I am but nothing! The saga continues.
And then there’s the internet. I woke up yesterday morning, thinking I would be writing this review. That was my plan. But the internet was not working. So after much sighing and general morning groggery, I did the usual - switch it off, switch it on again. Nothing. Right. Here we go again. So let’s look up what a blue flashing light means. Actually, is it blue? Is it aqua? Is it turquoise? What will the internet understand? Wait, I don’t have internet. It’s not too handy saying “if your internet is not working, please refer to the manual online”. Luckily though, I have internet on my mobile phone. The tiniest phone you ever did see. So, thumbs at the ready, I hunkered down once again. Dial tone?? I was told I didn’t need a landline telephone anymore! Now it asks for my landline telephone number. Wasn’t aware I had one! Next, I apparently had to tether my computer to my mobile phone. So there I am with a ball of yarn, wondering how on Earth this can help. It then says I need to text the company with the word “HELP”!! I do so. It springs back with “Hi, it’s the EE Diagnostics bot here” - God help us. At this point, CHVRLI BLVCK is wondering if I am EVER going to get to his song. Well, this is the point: I would LOVE to, but I can’t yet. Life is slowing me down. I am then told that due to an error on the line, I should hear from them USUALLY within 24-48 hours, and that I need not call them. Meanwhile, my girlfriend had unexpectedly run out of mobile internet (we both work from home). She checked the app to make sure: “We are currently undergoing maintenance - please check back later”. Great! On a whim I thought I’d check my energy company’s app to see if the erroneous figure had risen or fallen. “There’s a technical issue with our app and you can’t log in right now”. Great! Just WONDERful! I have SO many more things to tell you, like being made to stand naked in a doctor’s room for nearly 20 minutes - with no doctor - but I feel you music lovers will hunt me down and cut off my… shoelaces.
Enough of this. My brain hasn’t stop working, or gone on holiday. I don’t need the internet to write. Lord knows how I’m going to post this article though. I suppose I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. “Due to maintenance, this bridge cannot be crossed at this present moment. We apologise for the inconvenience. Please feel free to write a strongly worded letter, which will subsequently be ignored. Or, feel free to ignore the bridge altogether and throw yourself into the abyss below. We feel confident that you will not even attempt to sue us, on account of you being thoroughly deceased. Have a nice death! Signed Bot-Bot.”
THIS is my paradise. My pathetic paradise.
Dearest CHVRLI, your time has FINALLY come. I feel I do not need to introduce this chap to any of you, as in the New Artist Spotlight he is basically famous. Please welcome CHVRLI BLVCK to his third appearance in my Corner. In fact, he even brings his own director’s chair with “BLVCK LIVES MVTTER” on the back. Because CHVRLI BLVCK really does matter. If there is to be any one artist in the community who has a chance of making it in the big-time, it’s CHV. Sure, there are of course others, but this man is doing everything in his power to be noticed. To be picked up. In short, he is taking it seriously. When in Rome, Just Do It! Nike. Last year he was releasing in order to show that he has talent. But as of his previous stunningly beautiful single - Why Did You Go? - he is taking it all 10 steps further. He has grabbed the chicken by its wings while shouting “Chicken? CHICKEN?? Who you calling CHICKEN?? I ain’t no chicken!!” - yes, he may be slightly losing his mind in the process (have a look at his fabulously hilarious yet extremely cool social media videos), but I think it’s worth it. We ALL talk about mental health these days, as it’s vitally important. BUT!! Sometimes you gotta go through the rough to get what you want. Mental health must not be an excuse to take it easy and be lazy. CHV is being a one man soldier, in order to win the war. And I believe he actually will. And if he doesn’t, well we’ll ALL need a mental health check.
CHV’s brand new single is called Pathetic Paradise. And it is absolutely bloody brilliant! Did he look at the success of his previous single and learn that this is what people want? Nope. He did what I consider to be the correct way of thinking: been there, done that, move on. Something equally brilliant yet totally different. We went from soft beauty with the last single, to angry thrashing rock with Pathetic Paradise! Yep, you read that right. Within one release he has gone from timidly expressing his feelings and revealing his world, to letting his hair down and rocking out like a crazy person! Is it believable though? Does it seem and feel natural? Well, the answer is yes and yes. Without a doubt. This is called talent. Raw, versatile talent. We all have a variety of emotions, so why not express ourselves in a variety of ways? With a little help from recording engineer and producer Will Davies and (ahem) myself, the song was able to be heard the way CHV envisioned it in the first place. And this doesn’t degrade his talents in the slightest. We all agree Strawberry Fields is genius, but Lennon still needed George Martin and Paul McCartney to make it “come together”. It never weakened our sense of Lennon’s artistry. Every known artist you can think of has/had a producer and engineer. CHV is no different. Writing though, is the most important aspect of music. And boy, can this man write! And when it comes to performance, bejeezus he just gives it his ALL! Every recording session of his must feel like Wembley with your eyes closed.
Each release of CHV’s brings not only stunning music, but unique lyrics. Lyrics that make you think, cry, dream, wonder, laugh and say HELL YEAH!! But also every song brings one or two “special” lines. The ones that stick in your head and make you kick the air. The last single had “the scrambled eggs line” - we all know it. And if you don’t, damned well catch up and get with the programme! Or program. Pathetic Paradise has a couple that get me every time. One of those is “I wake up and make noises, and watch my body making questionable choices” - stunning. But the absolute humdinger for me is “I’ve broken both my legs because it’s easier than walking” - staggering. However, throughout the mixing process, I was absolutely convinced (bear in mind I even had the raw vocal stems) that it was “I’ve broken both my legs because it sees the oven walking”! I just thought it was CHV being CHV. But no. It was Cha being Cha - a thoughtful idiot. We did have a good chuckle though, once I had asked him. I even envisioned an animation of a walking oven! Too much Looney Tunes for me. But having mentioned all these wonderful lines, my favourite bit overall is the combination of words, music, performance and sound, when he sings: “I lay down fake track marks. This ain’t the way to the top, I assure you, son!” - and at that moment it kicks like a horse! The dynamics this song carries through from beginning to end are probably what make it so powerful. It’s something that Oasis never learnt. If you start huge, you have nowhere to go. Ever played Whack Attack (or Whac-A-Mole)? That’s basically how it feels: up, down, up, down, up, down, up, but always thrilling! It has the energy of a sugared-up kid on a hot day, who occasionally pauses to lick a lolly. Or: CHVRLI BLVCK.
In the words of Clarence in It’s a Wonderful Life: “You see, George, you’ve really had a wonderful life”… Well, Clarence was right about George Bailey, and you were all right about me. Despite this continuous string of utter crap we have to deal with, I suppose I do have a wonderful life. Pathetic or not, it’s my paradise.
Listen to 𝙋𝙖𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙩𝙞𝙘 𝙋𝙖𝙧𝙖𝙙𝙞𝙨𝙚 on the 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿 Spotify playlist HERE!
Listen to 𝙋𝙖𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙩𝙞𝙘 𝙋𝙖𝙧𝙖𝙙𝙞𝙨𝙚 on the 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗼𝗹𝗹𝘆’𝘀 𝗖𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗲𝗿 Apple Music playlist HERE!
Follow 𝘾𝙃𝙑𝙍𝙇𝙄 𝘽𝙇𝙑𝘾𝙆 on Instagram HERE!
Hire Charles to mix/master/produce your song HERE!
Please share this post and let me know your thoughts in the comments below