Posted in fan fiction, fanfiction, fiction, my writing, Simple Plan, Writing

“No Fear.” (Bed Hair – Four)

Perth

It was too early on a Saturday morning for me to even exist. But, Mark practically begged me to come with the band to NOVA. They were going to be doing an interview on the breakfast show. I didn’t really know why he wanted me there with them. Bianca said something about having extra support; I asked her ‘why me?’ She just looked at me as if she thought I should know the answer to that apparently stupid question.

My excuse was that I was still half asleep, and considering how late I stayed up the previous night, you could hardly blame me for acting naive about Mark’s request. My brain was always mush if I hadn’t had enough sleep. Especially on a weekend. Which was a little odd since I was usually fine about getting up on Sunday mornings.  Continue reading ““No Fear.” (Bed Hair – Four)”

Posted in fan fiction, fanfiction, fiction, my writing, Simple Plan, Writing

“I don’t want to hear it.” (Bed Hair – Three)

Los Angeles, CA

“So. You’re telling me you scheduled a fucking promo tour to Australia without asking me how I felt about it? You know what’s doing down there.”
Continue reading ““I don’t want to hear it.” (Bed Hair – Three)”

Posted in fan fiction, fanfiction, fiction, my writing, Simple Plan, Writing

“Thank God for Fridays.” (Bed Hair – Two)

April 2010
Perth, WA

Dear Diary,

You know what I don’t like? Sitting around, twiddling my thumbs and having to wait for work to come to me. I know I should be proactive, but when work doesn’t exist it’s a little difficult to be all gung ho over it. My parents have been complaining, but come on, you have to blame the government, don’t you? And, the media. All the hype last year about not having enough teachers has turned into just as much hype about not enough students. I wish they’d make up their minds.

Luckily, I’ve managed to secure a casual position at the Association of Science Teachers. Not ideal, but at least I don’t have to scab off my parents for fuel money. And I can pay for my own car insurance. Whoop-dee-do. That’s all small potatoes, though.

I can’t believe I’m writing this down; I’m such a boring person. Then again, I guess no one is going to be sticking their noses’ into my journal, are they? I mean, the ramblings of an average Australian woman who doesn’t have a spectacular life aren’t going to interest anyone in particular. Of course, in my opinion, it’s been a pretty speccy life, so far. But, doesn’t everyone think that about their own lives, no matter how ordinary they are?

Okay, so I’m not being entirely honest am I? But, my life is ordinary now. Let’s just forget about that three year period where I was not living at home in a normal suburban bungalow. I mean, not that it was bad…just…well, I’ve compartmentalised that part of my life to be treasured in my own private moments, too private even for this journal.

Anyway. After graduating last year, I was hoping that I’d get a job, quick smart. It didn’t happen, though. Which just sucks. But, that’s life for you. Well, at least it would be, except that ever since coming home, I’ve become more serious about my life. Or, to be more exact, my spiritual life. Which naturally translates to me going to church regularly.

I’ve found this great church in the city that’s just the right fit with where I’m at, right now. I’m not new to this. I was raised in the belief, but I wasn’t really serious about it. It’s kind of ironic my science degree was the catalyst that made me start thinking on it more. That was a few years ago, though. It just sort of came back to me in the last year. I guess that makes me a weird Christian.

Not that any of that matters to anyone, but me. Anywho, I have to stop here. The phone just rang. It was Mercy School asking to see if I can come in and do some relief. High maintenance teenaged kids, here I come…

~~~~~~~~~~
Continue reading ““Thank God for Fridays.” (Bed Hair – Two)”

Posted in Blogging, fan fiction, fanfiction, fiction, my writing, Simple Plan, Writing

Bed Hair is Not a Fashion Statement – Simple Plan Fan Fiction

Image

So, I don’t often share about my writing on this specific blog anymore. I do most of that on my other blog https://50shadesofmymind.wordpress.com. However, I thought I would share one of my fan fictions on this blog, so you get to see where some of my writing energy goes to.

Continue reading “Bed Hair is Not a Fashion Statement – Simple Plan Fan Fiction”

Posted in 2016, Blogging, east coast tour, Simple Plan, thoughts

Simple Plan, Australia 2016 – East Coast Tour – My thoughts

I wasn’t going to say anything, but I feel I need to.  Simple Plan has been a mainstay in my life for the past 12 (almost) years.  I saw them for the first time in 2005, flew to Brisbane so I could see them.  I was living in Townsville at the time and in those days “big” bands didn’t do the North Queensland city.  Then I moved to Perth, and the boys were meant to come in 2008.  
Now, what happened was that they had booked an 18+ gig and they ended up having to cancel as they didn’t get enough bookings for some reason or other.  The band apologised and promised they would be back.  I personally got upset (and became an A7X fan…) but at the same time I held them to their promise.  And guess what, they kept it.  Five years later, in 2013 as part of their Warped Tour run, they came back to Perth, because Perth wasn’t getting Warped Tour.  
Yes, I saw them again in 2012, once again flying over to Melbourne, and that was absolutely amazing, especially as I met them for the very first time.  
But, the point of my post is this:  it disheartens me to see fans of Simple Plan getting angry at Chuck and/or the band for not scheduling shows in their city/country.  There is only 365 days in a year…and they can’t get everywhere at once.  Also, they need to have breaks so they don’t burn out, and they can also go where there is demand.  Chuck (the band) and management try their hardest to plan the best tours and we as fans need to give them a chance.  And sometimes it’s out of their control.  
Consider the fact that there’s only a certain amount of venues in each city, and then the fact that there may be many other artists and bands touring at around the same time…well, they have to fit their schedule between other events.  

Chuck himself tweeted that they have tried their best and he promises if not this time…there is next time.  We all know that Simple Plan’s tour cycles often go over two or more years…and they often come back.  Take the European Tour as an example.  They’ve toured there twice, already.  

So, in this time period where we are so used to having things instantly…how about we all slow down and remember how to be patient?  The guys love us and love performing for us.  They’ll come see you.  Soon.

To all my fellow Aussie fans.  If you are lucky enough to get to one of their three shows?  

Enjoy and cherish it as a special moment in your life.  Be it your 1st, or you 100th Simple Plan concert.  

Astronaut, out.  


Posted in 2016, album review, my thoughts, new music, Simple Plan, Taking One For the Team, Team SP

Taking One For the Team – Simple Plan Album Thoughts




So, I’m finally ready to share my thoughts about an album that I’ve been waiting for since 2013.  Simple Plan just released their fifth album, Taking One For the Team and I can tell you that my initial thoughts were that overall it’s a great album.  Some of the tracks (read Everything Sucks) are a little weaker than I expected.  The ballads are really strong and I love the collabs.  (I Dream About You is so so so different but beautiful and Problem Child made me cry.)
Pierre’s vocals are showcased so well on this album, though.  
And that was after the first listen through.  Now that I’ve listened subsequent times I think I’m now ready to do a track by track review of the album.  (More an opinion piece than a proper review…but hey, that’s how I roll.) 

The opening track Opinion Overload is a great way to begin an album that has been so long in coming.  It is classic SP, pop punk, catchy with lyrics that call out those who are opinionated and like to bring us down.  It also has, I feel, a personal message pertaining to the band and their critics (including the fans who get upset about the different things that the band try; read: Saturday.). I love this track, it reminds me of Still Not Getting Any.
Boom!  What to say about this track? It’s been a while since the very first time I heard this song, but I can honestly say that I have a soft spot for this one.  The band first revealed this track live at a Simple Plan Foundation event, an acoustic version in 2014, and I loved it from the get go.  
The third track on the album Kiss Me Like Nobody’s Watching is a punchy, pop song that professes love and PDAs.  There isn’t much else to say about it, though, except I love the call and answer in the bridge of Jeff’s guitars and Pierre’s vocals.  
Farewell is a track that I had to listen to a couple of times (including when they released it during the release week before the album was released) before getting into.  This is the first track on the album that features a vocal collaboration.  Jordan Pundik of New Found Glory lends his voice to the track and it works really well.  I don’t really know NFG that well, but the bands’ genres are very similar so the collab works.  The song itself sounds lyrically like it could be about a bad romantic relationship but the band hinted that it could have a deeper meaning pertaining to the band itself.  I personally think it reminds me of Friend by Reset (which was referencing Pierre and Chuck’s falling out in their earlier band).  
Singin’ in the Rain didn’t sit right with me the very first time I played it.  It’s so different to anything the guys have done before and R City’s parts jarred as well.  But something clicked the subsequent plays.  It’s got a groove to it that I just want to bob my head along to.  And the lyrics are relatable, talking of life and how even if things aren’t going the way we want we can choose to just sing.  
I love these lyrics: I’ve got a song in my heart and I’m bulletproof/There’s nothing in the world that’s gonna kill this mood/No matter what life wants to throw my way/I’ll be singing, I’ll be singing in the rain!
Apparently the band will be filming a music video for this song this weekend, can’t wait to see what that will look like.

The band teased the next track early on in the studio process.  Everything Sucks is a track that is slowly beginning to grow on me.  It’s the weakest track on the album, but I still really like it.  I think it’s just a very safe song with rhyming lines and a formulaic lay out (you could say the same of plenty of other songs on the album, though).  It does showcase Pierre’s vocals well and the gang vocals at the end are catchy.  To be honest, knowing me, I’ll probably absolutely love this song after even more listens, but I think after hearing the tease of the chorus I was expecting a stronger song.  But, there it is. 

WOAH-OH I Refuse to accept criticism of this band by haters… This whole song is a big fuck you to the detractors in life who want to tear us down with their words.  It’s a choice that we can make to not allow them to make a difference in our lives.  This should be everyone’s anthem. I Refuse, the anthem of every bullied person in the world.  Boom! (This is a hard hitting pop punk track that I definitely want to hear live.)

Simple Plan’s collaborations with hip-hop artists have become a staple now, and so I have high expectations when it comes to these tracks.  I Don’t Wanna Go to Bed feat Nelly didn’t disappoint.  This track was released last year as the official lead single for the album.  The band filmed a Baywatch themed video for the track, which even has the Hoff himself cameoing in it.  If any song on the album is going to be labelled pop, it would have to be this one.  Pop and RnB to be honest.  Nelly’s contribution fits perfectly with the track, though on the single release he has a line right at the beginning that is cut from the album version.  Probably as it didn’t flow from the end of I Refuse. All in all a track that I actually really love.

If you haven’t been living under a rock you’d know that Simple Plan is pop punk at their roots and this track, Nostalgic, reminds me of all the pop punk bands that were around when I first became a fan of the band.  It sounds like a mix of Blink 182, Good Charlotte, Lee Harding (Wasabi era) and even Bowling For Soup.  Nostalgia eat your heart out, right?  It throwbacks to the early noughties, but at the same time sounds fresh and new.  Chuck’s drumming in this track is on point.  

Perfectly Perfect.  Apart from the corny title, I have no complaints about this track.  This song is very relatable especially as I’m married to a man who basically says this about me…that I’m beautiful, sexy etc and I really don’t see that… Maybe this song will change that.  

Horns and Simple Plan? I never thought that possible, but I Don’t Wanna Be Sad (which was first released when I was on my honeymoon last September) brought a completely different feel to a Simple Plan song.  The band is well known for their heavy (theme wise) songs being catchy and poppy and fun.  This offering was no different, except that it is very different.  I loved it from the first listen, especially as I’d been feeling a bit down at the time.  

P.S. I Hate You.  I don’t think I’ve ever hated anyone…so my thoughts on this song are purely about the music itself.  This song is another quintessential Simple Plan track, in its barest form.  Enough said.

I don’t cry when listening to Simple Plan songs.  Not ever.  Not until now.  Problem Child broke something inside of me.  I don’t even know what it is really.  Is it the heartfelt lyrics? Is it the actual chords and melody of the chorus? Is it the piano in the instrumental and Jeff’s solo? Or is it the fact that even though I love my parents and they brought me up well, and I’ve reached a place where I know they’re proud of my achievements, there are moments where I felt I disappointed them and could’ve done a lot better? Whatever it is, the song has made me emotional every listen.  Every single time.  (Oh, and the key change in this song was well done.)

The final track on the album, I Dream About You, is nothing like any other song the band has ever written.  From the opening notes, and Pierre’s vocals to Juliet Simms sultry tones, to the strings this song has a dreamlike quality that may not appeal to everyone but has captured my heart.  This song is pure art, no mistake and I love that the band were brave enough to put this on the album, as the final song no less.  It really rounds out the album and leaves a lasting impression long after the final note has ended.  

Bear in mind that these are just my opinions, you may disagree with me and that’s fine, but to sum up what I’ve said here, this album is full of diverse songs that bring a fresh new sound to the music landscape.  However, at the same time remind us of where Simple Plan have come from, the pop punk arena of the late 90s/early noughties, and they haven’t forgotten that either.  

I’d hazard to say this so early on, but I believe this is the best album Simple Plan has released and that’s saying something since I’ve always placed SNGA on that pedestal.  

So, TL;DR
I give this album 9/10 – for diversity and reminding us of their roots
Best tracks: I Dream About You, Opinion Overload, Problem Child, Boom!, Singing in the Rain
Weakest track: Everything Sucks

Posted in Blogging, Church, health, hubby, life, marlysworld, my thoughts, Simple Plan

I’m 30! The rest is all down hill from here!

Not really. 

I apologise for the lack of thoughts from my brain; 
the last few weeks have been a bit insane.  
Before I update you, have the cover of Simple Plan’s soon-to-be released (tomorrow!!!) single, “I Don’t Wanna Go to Bed!” (“Is this their I Don’t Wanna album?” – Mark). 
Anyway, updates:
1.  My husband’s health took a turn, and he ended up in hospital.  We initially thought it was due to ongoing issues with a wound he has on his foot, but over the past week of tests etc (I won’t bore you with them) the doctors now think he has the flu.  
2. In the last two weeks of school holidays it was absolutely crazy at work.  It’s settled down now, but we now have hand foot and mouth going through the centre.  Fun.  Spent ages cleaning every single toy in our room yesterday. 
3.  I turned 30 on Sunday the 11th.  Not the most auspicious of occasions, what with Mark being in hospital, but a strangely beautiful day, nonetheless. 
4.  Riverview is now based at Curtin for the next ten or so months.  The first service, which incidentally was on my birthday, went amazingly well.  God’s presence was there in the large space.  It still felt like home.
5.  Throughout all this time, one thing is abundantly clear:  God is forever with me.
And finally.  Have this photo of the team worshiping pre-service. 
God bless you all.

 

Posted in Blogging, blogging the important stuff, my thoughts, Simple Plan

Simple Plan – Thoughts – 10 years since first SP concert.

I’ve had Simple Plan on my mind for the past week.  Well, to be honest, they’ve been on my mind for at least ten years.  Ten years and eleven months to be exact.  Considering, that ten years from tomorrow would have been the first time I saw the band live, it’s quite a relevant space to be in.  
There are no words really that do Simple Plan any credit, and I’ve probably used up my quota over the time that has passed.  
So, instead I’ll just share a few photos from the three concerts of theirs that I’ve experienced.

Posted in A7X, bands, Blogging, fob, Music, my thoughts, Pierre Bouvier, Simple Plan, yes I know his middle name

Ban the word Frontman

Pierre through the years
Pierre Charles Bouvier

I’m not one for idolising people.  For several reasons.  People are flawed.  People are not perfect.  Everyone makes mistakes and are not worthy of being put on a pedestal.  However, in saying that, I’m not a perfect person, either.  So, I will allow myself to indulge in the act of ‘idolisation’ somewhat. 
And there is this one frontman – I’ll get back to how problematic I think that word is, in a minute – that I will hold up a little.  
Mr Pierre Charles Bouvier, lead singer of Simple Plan has been on my radar for the last eleven years, and today he turns 36.  I’ve probably talked and written about him a lot over the years, but I felt lead to go a bit more in depth.  
I must admit, my initial attraction to Pierre was shallow, based on looks and voice…but, that’s normal?  I mean at that point I was 19 and had never really had any crush on a ‘celebrity’ [not counting Kick Gurry from Looking For Alibrandi].  And seriously, who could blame me?
Pierre in the studio recording Still Not Getting Any
My early days/years of being a Simple Plan fan I must admit were, in hindsight, a tad embarrassing.  Being in the middle of my science degree at university, and nursing a fledgling obsession with this band…was a recipe for disaster.  Well, not quite.  But it was a matter of contention with my parents.  My writing flourished thanks to my crush on Pierre…which then ended up in arguments with my mum because she’d catch me awake at all hours of the night on the computer.  At one point she even told me I needed to see a shrink…basically…yeah…
I blame Pierre.  Always.  Still do.  Or more specifically, EP.  But, I digress. 
[I always blame this face]
Pierre on Channel V’s What U Want Live, 2005
Pierre became my writing muse; I’ve written over 40 fan fictions featuring him in some form or another.  Then seeing the band live in 2005 for the first time?  That just cemented the attraction for me.  

Pierre, 2nd October, 2005, Brisbane Entertainment Centre

I haven’t looked back, really.  He will always be my favourite singer in a band.  His personality and raw talent are what attract me these days.  Especially after having met him twice.  

Pierre, 2012/2013 obviously
Pierre is down-to-earth, self-deprecating and seriously an all round nice guy.  He’s not afraid to joke about where he comes from and take the piss out of the band and their music.  
Plan!

Chuck: We didn’t play… Save YouPierre: Save You…save you…David: Which is by the way now called, ‘Shave You’.Pierre: ….*sings* I wish I could shaaaave you…

Pierre and Delilah
How can you not love that face? Anyway.  
Pierre [EP, Pips…] is one of those singers in a band that I will always recognise and respect.  Simple Plan would not be the band it is today if this wonderful man wasn’t fronting it.  
The dreaded word…. frontman

M Shadows, A7X
I’m not a fan of the term ‘frontman’.  Especially when it comes to Pierre Bouvier of Simple Plan.  Let me unpack that a bit for you.  When I read the word ‘frontman’ I visualise a rockstar, a guy who is cocky and struts around the stage.  I would call M Shadows of Avenged Sevenfold a frontman.  Because that is what he is most definitely, at least on stage.  Off stage…not so much.  But, that’s the point really. [I’m not dissing Shads by any means…he’s my second favourite lead vocalist ;)]
Pierre on the other hand, doesn’t come across that way.  Yes, he exudes charisma and can hold the crowd in the palm of his hand, but he doesn’t come across cocky.  He’s real, personable… almost like an Aussie.  Maybe that’s the Canadian in him, though.  Haha.  
The other issue I have with the term ‘frontman’ is that it seems to shine the spotlight on the lead singer and take all the attention away from the rest of the band, who, to be honest, are just as important.  
It’s also problematic when you get a band where even the lead singer is forgotten or not known.  
Eg.  When I first heard about Fall Out Boy…I thought Pete Wentz was the ‘frontman’ because he was the one most seen in the media.
Pete Wentz, frontman?
But, guess what…this is their lead singer.
This is not Pete Wentz.  This is Patrick Stump, lead vocalist of FOB
I don’t think it’s necessary to call them the ‘frontman’… ‘the face of the band’ whatever.  The band should be seen as a whole!  Incidentally I think the drummer is the most important member of the band…
Lucky Simple Plan has four drummers.  [What?]
Chuck, official drummer
Pierre, self-professed better drummer than Chuck
David actually better drummer than Chuck, according to Chuck
Seb, air drummer extraordinaire
So, anyway.  Let’s ban the word ‘frontman’. On an aside, I’m sure all the lead vocalists of bands who grew up with self-esteem issues would thank you for it.
Simple Plan and other bands

In today’s world of One Direction [and the fall out going on with them at the moment] and dance music that seems to be taking over the airwaves, I miss the days of actual bands.  You know…Good Charlotte, Blink 182, A7X, Simple Plan, Eskimo Joe, Coldplay, The Living End….and then back further, The Eagles, ACDC… and I could name many others.  But, I won’t.
The point I want to make right now, is that these bands write their own music and play their own instruments and have fun doing it.  They also care about their fans [maybe not so much Blink…] and want to make a difference through their music.  
Not saying that pop groups or other artists can’t or don’t, but I think bands like Simple Plan and A7X are special in ways that I can’t even really put in words.  
Watching a band live is something I think everyone should do at least once in their life.  I’ve been pretty lucky to do it a lot more than once.
Coldplay x 2
Simple Plan x 3 
Eskimo Joe [and support acts]
Third Day
The Eagles
Needtobreathe
Tonight Alive
The Never Ever
We The Kings
Youth Group
All American Rejects
Kisschasy
The Madden Brothers [I count as a band, because Good Charlotte] [and support acts]
Murphy’s Lore
…to name just a few.  
This whole blog post seems a tad disjointed, but I’ll just blame this face and I’m sure you’ll forgive me…or him.
PS.  Pierre is the best band dad going.
Pierre and his daughters [from his instagram]