George Reece - All Of The Lights | EP Review

Source: Official EP Artwork
You may remember at Christmas, we made our Christmas Hit George Reece's Every Little Thing. Now, the singer, songwriter, producer (frankly the list goes on) has released a new five-track EP, All Of The Lights.

It's hard to pinpoint what genre George's music falls into as he clearly draws on a lot of influences and is no stranger to producing a wide range of music. He even once created a track using the sounds made by his baby nephew. Whilst that track hasn't quite made the cut of this record, the five that did are really quite stunning!

The EP opens with Lights, carrying an electronic futuristic vibe, complete with sonic beats and synths. Paired with George's falsetto, the track is wonderfully entrancing and dreamlike, hooking you in on the first listen.

Next up is Park Poem, which begins with a very long instrumental of almost two minutes and features a fairly long interlude, giving the track an overall time of seven and a half minutes. Think such a long time makes a track tedious? You need to listen to this. Featuring moments that are nothing short of twinkly as well as some epic guitar riffs, this song has everything - an effortlessly classic feel with a contemporary twist.

It may start slow but So Old, So Young soon turns into a head-bopping (predominantly) acoustic pop hit. A pretty relatable tune for millennials, or quite possibly anyone who feels like they're coming of age, yet still so young. Like Park Poem, it features a quick electronic solo, and George displays his vocal range, hitting some high notes at the track's conclusion.

The EP certainly is 'All Of The Lights' with the penultimate song aptly titled Little Light. With a lightly (sorry) punchy drum kick and piano, the track is much more dulcet than its predecessors, greatly slowing the pace of the record.

Bought Us A Car closes the EP, and with George's voice taking on a gritty tone, it feels slightly alternative/rock, although as we said before, it's not always possible to pin down exactly what genre George fits into - no bad thing! 

Each time George Reece releases something, expect to be surprised at every turn. Having written countless songs, produced various albums and always eager to take on new musical projects, he certainly knows how to tackle all three with poise - and executes them brilliantly. If you're going to download any DIY musician's EP this month, make it George's.

Watch the video for Little Light below! 

Download your copy of All Of The Lights
Find George Reece on TwitterFacebook and Youtube

2016: My Year In Review

My first blog post of 2017! I hope everyone had a great Christmas and that you're now enjoying a good start to the new year. As I said in my post about my 2016 blog achievements, last year was a 'wonky' year. There was Brexit, Trump, and we lost a disastrous number of famous greats as well as innocents facing war and strife in their home nations. 

However, rather than reviewing the whole world's 2016, I thought I'd just review my own. There's been a lot of reflective posts surfacing recently, but that's no bad thing. I've kept mine mainly positive, as I want this to set the tone for my 2017. Things definitely went wrong too but it's important to count your blessings and let the sun shine through the clouds, right?

One of the highlights of my year by far is not so much an event but these three people. The last six months of our uni course were testing to say the least but we supported each other, laughed til we cried, danced, and celebrated in style, watching excessive episodes of RuPaul's Drag Race in the process. I still call Laura, Lauren and Joe my 'housemates' even though we moved out in August!
In May I reached the last milestone you actually want to celebrate - 21! Here, I'm surrounded by my gorgeous friends, and I also had a huge family party too. May is a very busy birthday month with my friends, so celebrating some of those at uni and at home made this month one of the best!

For six weeks in June and July, I had the pleasure of being one of Bournemouth University's undergraduate research assistants. Mine was as a digital outreach assistant for a project called Digital Families, which was encouraging families to use digital media in ways they may never have had the opportunity to do before. The role involved a lot of graphic design, blogging and social media work as well as being involved with workshops such as augmented reality, stop motion animation and 3D model design on the Isle of Portland (see above), at a local tutoring place, and at the uni's Festival of Learning.

This year gave me the chance to explore many places around the UK. I haven't actually been abroad for years, mainly due to work commitments and uni, so maybe that'll happen in 2017, but our little isles aren't half bad for finding some beautiful landscapes and architecture. Trips to Brownsea Island and Cambridge were certainly two of my favourites.

For many, December is the best month of the year, while for others, it's the hardest. For me, it's a bit of both. I think there's a lot of pressure to be 'happy' at Christmas when that's not always so easy, and it can make me way too reflective about how the year has gone. However, I absolutely loved spending so much time with friends from home, catching up with uni/college friends who don't live so close and seeing some of my big old family that I definitely don't see often enough.

Some other things I enjoyed in 2016:
Graduating (the event itself was stressful but I didn't do three years work for nothing!)
Securing a full-time graduate job
Celebrating anything with a party
Beach BBQs
Owning a DSLR and getting more into photography + trying out Youtube for my blog
Long walks... anywhere
Not having any exams
Realising some people aren't worth my time
Eating Wok2Go (it's in Bournemouth, try it)
Eating other food/drink with special people
Continuing to open up about mental health because it's nothing to be ashamed of

Things that went less well:
Getting food poisoning after my housemate's 21st during deadline season
Our student house
Our student house's wall falling down and next door's dog escaping temporarily
The letting agents being very, very slow to do anything
Being groped by a stranger who then asked me how my day was going
And worst of all, losing my dear, dear godfather

2016 was a huge challenge in parts but it certainly had a lot of ups which outweigh the downs. How was your 2016? Let me know in the comments below!

My 2016 Blog Achievements

2016 is finally drawing to a close and this will actually be my last post until 2017, as I think it's important to take some time off to relax at Christmas/New Year. In a year where everything went a bit, erm, wonky, all over the world, it's important to reflect on the good moments too. As far as blogging is concerned, 2016 was my best year ever for various reasons. Adamant that 2016 won't go down as 'the year we should delete from history', I'm keeping it positive with my top five achievements over the past 12 months!

1. Without a doubt, my personal highlight in terms of blogging was being awarded Highly Commended at the UK Blog Awards 2016 in the PR, Media, Marketing and Communications category. To be voted for by the public (thanks everyone!) into the top 10 and then be given a runner-up prize by industry experts, was a huge personal and professional achievement.

2. I never feel like it's necessary to reveal my blog's statistics publicly but what I will say is that the current figure for overall page views is triple what it was on January 1st 2016. That means I've achieved double the number of views in this year alone, compared with between May 2012 and December 2015 *pats self on back*

3. My blog's social media presence has boomed. It's unbelievable to think that I started the year with Twitter 1,400 followers (I started the account in January 2013) and now I'm on 6,700. Instagram has also seen a big increase (now I'm at 1.4k compared to 200 10 months ago), and Facebook is nearing 400 likes - by far the hardest platform to build an audience on organically. Of course, it's not all about numbers but it certainly is a motivating factor for me.

4. Rebranding the blog as HD Online and finally moving over to an official domain! Having been from May 2012, it was amazing to finally get a proper 'home' for the blog over the summer. I've also loved being able to reach out and connect to new readers as a result of posting more personal features, as well as my photo galleries.

5. Some may remember that HD did initially relaunch over at in April, something I meticulously prepared for, building the website myself and coming up with new content/promotional ideas. Unfortunately, I couldn't predict the issues I encountered, which is why after three months I chose to move back to Blogger. I call it an achievement because I refuse to see only the negatives in the situation; I learnt never to rush into a big decision and invaluable time management skills... uni and constant blogging isn't the easiest thing!

So there you have it! Those are my top five achievements for 2016 where HD Online is concerned. I'm hugely proud (as all bloggers should be) of everything I've produced for my blog this year - from the written content to social media and creating graphics to forming relationships with industry contacts, and even dabbling in Youtube!

To everyone that reads HD, has got in touch throughout the year, shared a post, or supported us in another way, thank you so, so much! I wish you all a happy holidays and best wishes for a great 2017.

What do you consider your biggest blog achievements of 2016? Let me know below!

Christmas Hit: George Reece - Every Little Thing

Source: Youtube
In the true spirit of Christmas, this week, our Fresh Hit is a Christmas Hit - how original is that, eh? 

Our good friend George Reece has written, recorded and produced this original Christmas Hit titled Every Little Thing, and we think it's pretty special. 

Listen to the music and it seems like a pretty typical upbeat festive track, but delve a little deeper, and the song carries a much greater bittersweet meaning. The lyrics are all about being far from a loved one at Christmas time, and wishing that you could bring them closer, something which a lot of people who are in long-distance relationships can associate with. 

George's isolation in the video is rather touching, as we see him decorate a forest (why not?) with lights and baubles, as well as the tree in his living room, entirely on his own. We think this Youtuber, producer, writer, film-maker and all-round nice guy has done a superb job of reminding everyone to appreciate everyone they love - near or far - this holiday!

Buy your copy of Every Little Thing
Find George Reece on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube

Video of the Week: Love Ghost - Forgive Me

Source: Youtube
Our Video of the Week goes to Love Ghost for Forgive Me!

Love Ghost are a four-piece hailing from Los Angeles. Inspired by the 90’s grunge subculture, the band pays tribute to the alternative rock genre, while creating a unique and modern sound. Having grown up together, the four-piece are able to poignantly express both the hardships and joys of suburban teenage culture within their music. 

The band was formed by frontman Finn Bell, who at just 15-year-old brings a maturity beyond his years to the table, with his soulful lyrics and arrangements. Despite the band all being teenagers, their raw musical skill creates a nostalgic triumph of distorted guitar melodies, heavy drums and emotionally stimulated lyrics. Love Ghost’s musical composition is inspired by a mix of old universal horror films meshed with iconic grunge artists such as Nirvana and Alice in Chains.  

Check out the video for Forgive Me below!

Get your copy of Forgive Me
Get your copy of the Love Ghost, Vol. 1 EP
Follow Love Ghost on Twitter, Facebook and Youtube