Best Songs of the 2010s (#25-1)

songs2It’s time to live in the past for just one brief moment longer before we fully embrace the future. Time for one last shot of nostalgia as we look at the very best songs of the past ten years. Songs that dominated the airwaves and became anthems for millions, and the ones that formed the backbone of our playlists and became the musical lifeblood of a more personal journey. Songs that have hyped us up ready to take on the world and ones that helped us escape into daydreams, ones that have given us goosebumps and some that have even brought us close to tears. So, assuming you’ve caught up with part one, let’s get to it! Continue reading

Best Songs of the 2010s (#50-26)

songs1There’s nothing quite like a truly great song. Just a few short minutes of musical brilliance can change your life. It can be the backdrop to falling in love and be the soundtrack to the first dance at your wedding, or it can be the voice you rely upon to talk you down from the edge when your world feels like it’s falling apart. Great songs can stay with you for a lifetime, and there was no shortage of songs like that over the course of the past ten years. We did our best to narrow it down to our top 50, and as with our albums list we limited it to one song per act. Let’s get to it! Continue reading

The Pros and Cons of YouTube

youtube logoYouTube is a platform that has become second nature. Much like how Google has completely overshadowed other search engines to the point that Google is almost synonymous with the internet itself, if a video isn’t on YouTube then to all intents and purposes it may as well not exist. While music may not be its primary purpose, it’s a great tool for artists and fans alike. So we’re taking a look at how YouTube stacks up as a music platform, and how well it works for both music makers and music consumers alike. Continue reading

Top Tracks: Jonathan Hultén – The Mountain

Some songs resonate with you on a personal level. Perhaps the lyrics find just the right words to say what you’re thinking, or the beat almost seems to fall in time with your heart. There’s just something about it that you can feel in every fibre of your being. Songs like ‘The Mountain’ take that idea a step further however, they feel like they resonate with the world itself. Like you could close you eyes and listen to the hum of nature around you, the wind, the trees, the ground beneath your feet, all in tune with the song. The simple dark folk arrangement, reminiscent in places of Nick Drake’s Pink Moon, the hair-raising choral harmonies, and the fantastic video that flows like a living tapestry, all make it feel like there’s something ancient and mystical at work. Taken from his debut solo album Chants From Another Place out 13th of March, this new track from Swedish songwriter Jonathan Hultén is something to behold. There’s magic in ‘The Mountain’, as though its melody has echoed down the generations or its words lie engraved in some long forgotten ruins.

Best Albums of the 2010s (#25-1)

albums2As we move into the second half of our deep dive into the finest records of the past ten years, things certainly haven’t gotten any easier. At many times this list became a real battle between head and heart; between the records with a profound personal connection and those that hold great influence and importance in the wider scheme of things. After much soul searching we’ve struck upon the right balance between the two for our final look at the best albums of the decade. (If you missed part one, you can check it out here) Continue reading

Best Albums of the 2010s (#50-26)

albums1It’s the dawning of a new decade, and as such we have a chance to look back not just on the past year of music, but the past ten years! Compiling the 50 most defining, moving, engaging, singular, exhilarating, influential and inspirational albums of the 2010s has been Belwood’s most challenging endeavour ever, not least because we limited it to one album per act. At long last however, we have our list: Continue reading

Top Tracks: Woods End – Waves

This Swedish band never fails to impress with their superb ability to craft a compelling atmosphere and conjure up evocative imagery. Their dark gothic folk styling particularly excels at creating a mood akin to some isolated wintery cabin, the kind where you gather round the crackling fire and tell tales of great adventures, of heroes and monsters, stories passed down through the generations. Their new single ‘Waves’ changes up this formula however, offering a more energised and progressive spin on their sound. Rather that a story shared on a quiet winter’s night, ‘Waves’ feels far more like the adventure itself. The riffs like the icy grip of the wind tearing at your skin, the brilliant percussion crashing like the waves upon the shore. This song feels like an epic tale in the making, the soundtrack of a titanic battle or the start of a grand voyage across a raging sea.

Top Tracks: Flo – Between The Lines

A new year and a new decade now lay at our feet. While it’s been fun to look back on the highlights and successes of 2019, and the growth and progress made across the 2010s, it can be a daunting prospect to now acknowledge the vast unknown future that lies before us. Endings and new beginnings can be difficult, especially for us creatures of habit, and it can be hard to move forward without seeing where the road ahead leads. Thankfully Belwood favourite Flo has the perfect song to reassure and inspire as we head into 2020, offering up another simply spellbinding performance. With its calls of “there’s always something better on the other side”, ‘Between The Lines’ feels like the comforting hand on your shoulder that lifts the weight of the world, or the words of encouragement that we long to hear but are too scared or proud to ask for. The dreamy arrangement, the reassuring and hopeful message, and Flo’s ever gorgeous vocals are the perfect guiding light to lead us into the year ahead.

Top Ten Songs of 2019

top ten songsThis year’s list of songs didn’t turn out how I envisioned it even just a few short weeks ago. There were plenty of tracks off the top of my head that I thought would be certain to make an appearance, but when it came down to putting pen to paper and narrowing the list down they ended up not making the cut. Just goes to show how many amazing tracks we’ve been treated to in 2019. Continue reading