How Much Of A Summer Cliché Were You?

As the summer draws to a close and September creeps around the corner, TASTE asks, did you avoid becoming a summer stereotype?  Read below to find out which summer holiday tribe you belong to.

The Couple on the Verge

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You went to Paris to prove to the world (and all your Facebook friends) that you are both in love with a capital L. Pictures show you kissing beneath the Eiffel Tour, wearing matching mouse ears overlooking the Disneyland castle and looking edgy (and in love) outside the Louvre. The reality is that you split up on the first day, spent you trip crying into complex carbs from the local patisserie and got kicked out of Disney for having a screaming match Solange style on the teacups.

Single Girls Holiday

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Basing their annual trip on the WWMICCG motto (Where Would Made In Chelsea’s Cast Go) these twenty-something uni grads channel Millie Mackintosh-come-Moss while lounging in a Croatian villa they found on Airbnb. While they wish they could turn off their iPhones, send postcards and ‘connect’ with one another, instead the day includes hangovers by the pool sipping cheap rose, throwing shade behind a dog-eared Grazia and uploading a constant stream of perfectly executed cliff jumping shots to Twitter/Instagram/Facebook. By night they’re even heavier on the filters and the fake tan application, playing international Tinder and Never Have I Ever. Pass out before midnight on their pool lilo.

Festival Fiend

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Since going to uni you’ve managed shed all evidence of the Gilet glad and Abercrombie obsessed persona you so carefully curated at your private all-girls school. You’ve bagged a boyfriend that does ket and a friend that sells her own ‘garms’ on ASOS Marketplace and now it’s time to up the ante, don your extensive bindi collection and head to some off the wall festival with repetitive music and too many floral headbands. You pay £150 in the hopes that you’ll ‘discover’ the next Klingande. Instead you get drunk on Aperol spritz by noon, unable to leave the tepee that is playing Pharrell’s Happy for the 197th time.

The Long term Lovers

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Dream of joining friends in Berlin but end up alone together in Cornwall B&B (again). Pretend to rather have a holiday that includes egg sandwiches, surfing and Breaking Bad over late night kebabs and warehouse raves. Imagine the weekend will also involve sun, sex and some questionable surfing and connecting as a couple. Instead you pretend to have diarrhoea just so you can dart into a pub and use the wifi for 30 blissfully uninterrupted minutes.

The Yoga Bore

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Reformed wild child who can’t stop telling people how ‘centred’ they are since taking up the stretchy stuff this summer. Longs for Jennifer Anniston arms and the clarity of Hilary Clinton. When not discussing the downward dog to anyone that will listen, Yoga Bore  waxes lyrical about the damaging effects of refined sugar and how important it is to ‘eat clean’. By ‘eating clean’ they are referring to spending three hours and roughly £50 on making ‘healthy’ kale and avocado cheesecake that still contains 99% of their daily fat intake and tastes like burnt grass.

The Gap Yah

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You just finished your last year in school or uni, panicked and booked an overpriced 11 month trip to Australia/ Thailand / Bali to avoid your parents questioning and the threat of pending adult responsibility. You wear those ‘alternative’ trousers you bought last year in Zara but never had the balls to wear and organise the rest of your clothes according to day and activity, fantasizing about zip slides, hot boys and rainforest raves. Instead you spend the first month stranded and broke in rural Oz working as a sheep farmer trying to save up enough to hitchhike to the nearest city so you can email your parents for more cash. You’re not so hopefully about the next ten months.

REVIEW: Nina Nesbitt – Peroxide

Here is the copy of the review I did for Nina Nesbitt’s debut album for Source Magazine. Peroxide is out now. 

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What to expect from an album named Peroxide? Something a bit brash, a bit obvious? A bit too much? In fact the result is the exact opposite; acoustic and upbeat, Nina Nesbitt’s long-awaited debut album is unpretentious pop at it’s best.

The Scottish singer made a name for herself at 16 after catching the eye of Ed Sheeran, going on to support him on three arena dates before beginning to gig solo around the UK herself. Like Sheeran, she has attracted a loyal fanbase (the self-proclaimed ‘Nesbians’) from singing catchy songs about the joys and pitfalls of teenage life. Her energetic and euphoric anthems have the foot stamping appeal of KT Tunstall with a pinch of Katy Perry’s wit and charm.

Peroxide begins with her best known singles Stay Out and Selfies, getting the album off to an energetic start and introducing Nina as the perfect playful popstar, singing soulfully about kissing strangers and the mysteries of adulthood.

Not one to sit back and let the catchy riffs and toe tapping rhythms speak for themselves, Nina’s snappy lyrics take a shot at everyone from overconfident teenage boys “who think they’re gangsters, when they’ve barely started sixth form” to mini-skirt clad girls dressed like “they’re in Barbados, outside it’s minus three”. Nina’s menacing observations continue in tracks like Two Worlds Away where she huskily sings of working away in clothes shops by day and drinking under bus stops by night.

While there is nothing new or groundbreaking here, Nina proves that sometimes a strong voice, an acoustic guitar and a whole lot of talent is all you really need. Her shamelessly poppy tracks are both honest, accessible and the perfect antidote to the soulless manufactured hits churned out by Miley and co.

Songs like Selfies, Mr C and Back For More are typical teenage anthems, cheeky and charming in equal measure, but those over 21 will be left wondering what all the fuss is about. According to Nina, “The world began in 1994″, an idea that resonates throughout the album. However as Peroxide progresses away from her wise cracking, feet stomping chants, the pared back ballads suggest a subtle maturity beyond her years. Nina leaves the best till last: The Hardest Part is undoubtedly Peroxide’s standout track and, according to Nina, her personal favorite from the album. Here her vocals are laid bare accompanied by only an acoustic guitar and stellar lyrics, proving Nina can hold her own both as a songwriter and a singer.

Such a strong final track suggests big things are ahead for Nina but for now she seems happy enough to provide the sound for young Britain, living her very own teenage dream.

★★★

New Years Eve Style

Still not got that outfit picked out for the biggest party of the year? Take inspiration from this street style look: a bomber coat, crop top and stylish trousers will make you stand out whatever you are doing for New Years. Not only will this look keep you warm, this casual outfit can be glammed up with statement jewels and a cool clutch. I’ve picked out the best combinations of tailored trousers  and gorgeous accessorise – see what you think.

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