Author Archive: Kayla

My 8 Week Challenge Journey

Like most women, I have always been body conscious and unhappy with how I look. Having thick thighs and a bigger bust didn’t help when I looked in the mirror and was disgusted at the unflattering reflection staring back at me. Growing up with an awesome cook for a father, we were never deprived of good food. Healthy home-cooked meals were a daily necessity, but it was always so good, I would go back for an extra serving. Throughout high school, I was a boredom and emotional eater, always scouring the cupboards for something to eat, usually full of sugar.

Commuting for university studies usually meant a super early but usually healthy breakfast, followed by sugary quick and easy snacks in breaks to get me through each class. Back to back classes also meant long periods of time without a decent meal. Studying right in the city surrounded me with food courts galore with me choosing unhealthy options often to get me through the day. My eating habits only improved in my final semester this year and that was probably because I was only there one day a week.

While going to the gym consistently for the past 4 years, I have always struggled with my weight and keeping motivated. I would do well some weeks, eat healthy and work out almost every day, other weeks would consist of maybe one or two work outs and a lot of ‘treating’ myself to takeaway and ice-cream, vowing I would go back to eating healthy the following week. It was a never-ending cycle.

My fiancée tells me constantly that I’m beautiful and need to love my curves and my body, that people would kill for a body like mine, but there’s always a part of me that thinks he’s just saying it to make me feel better. Now I’m beginning to realise that it’s probably a lot of my anxiety talking.

This year, more specifically the past few months, I have been determined to focus on my fitness and work hard towards a body that I am happier with.   When my gym was signing up people for the 8-week challenge, I was hesitant to join, as I didn’t want to give up half way or work hard and not see results. A little convincing from one of my awesome gym buddies changed my mind however and I decided to give it a go, not only as moral support for her but also because I’m getting married in 2019 and would love to be able to walk into a bridal store and find the perfect dress that I feel like a princess in.

I started the challenge with a huge meal prep session, dividing meals into containers ready to go. At first, I was still hungry, as I was used to eating so much more food in a sitting but that was half my problem before, portion sizes that were way too big. I was so used to having a few soft drinks every week, that cutting it out of my diet left me with sugar withdrawals. I felt tired and run down for the first week but just kept resting and waiting for my body to detox. Two weeks into the challenge, I was shocked to step onto the scales and discover that I had already lost 1.6kgs! I was even more determined to smash this challenge. Week 3 was a bit rocky, as I came down with the flu which completely knocked me for six. Barely eating and unable to find the energy to work out, the week was almost a write-off, but I didn’t want to give up and admit defeat. I had to keep going.

Left: Week 1 Challenge Middle: Week 7 of the challenge Right: 2 weeks after the challenge

Bottom Left: Week 1 Challenge Top left: Week 7 of the challenge Right: 2 weeks after the challenge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I DID IT! I completed the whole challenge and came second out of my gym. I lost about 6kgs of fat, gained muscle and lost cm’s off my hips (9.5cm!), waist and legs. My fitness has improved immensely and my eating habits have changed for the better and I feel so much happier and healthier inside and out! The 8-week challenge increased my motivation to be fit and healthy. I am nowhere near where I would like to be yet but I’m on the right track! If I keep this up, I know I will walk down the aisle in 2019, feeling confident and happy with myself, ready to take on the world!

 

AMITY GOES ZOMBIE

NEW MUSIC VIDEO: AMITY GOES ZOMBIE

 

Fearless Records are at it again, gearing up to release another Punk Goes Pop compilation album, lucky number 7!

While most artists picked for the albums are American, sometimes the Aussie bands get a look in. This time it’s the boys in The Amity Affliction, bringing the goods with their cover of The Weeknds ‘Can’t Feel My Face’.

The band have shown their inner zombie, releasing an Amity meets The Walking Dead video for the track. Although the band look a little bit dead in the clip, they breathe new life into the song that was overplayed on the radio, meanwhile adding a cute little high school zombie love story into the mix.

We’re digging it! See the music video below and have a listen!

 

PUNK GOES POP VOL. 7 is out on the 14th of July via Fearless Records

ALBUM REVIEW: ARK – IN HEARTS WAKE

ALBUM REVIEW: 

ARK – IN HEARTS WAKE

 

It’s been over 2 years since In Hearts Wake wowed fans with their dual recorded albums Earthwalker and then Skydancer. They even April fooled everyone into thinking their next would be titled Seaskimmer, but no the boys from Byron Bay are back with their fourth release, Ark.

In Hearts Wake have continued their album making formula (If it isn’t broke, don’t fix it right?), starting with an instrumental interlude before ripping straight into single, Passage. It’s clear from the first line of the song, the theme of the album – Water, Earth’s most precious resource.

Third track, Nomad is made for live shows, with its bridge and chanting breakdown ‘Liberate Me’ set to go off, just as The Unknown and Survival have done so in the past.

Jake Taylor’s crushing vocals blend flawlessly with Kyle Erich’s voice, which works so well together. Erich’s vocal range has transformed since the band’s earlier work (especially Divination), allowing his parts to be grittier when needed.

Again, just like previous albums, the band come out blaring for the first few songs, before turning down the volume for a lighter, almost ballad-esque song. Ark’s answer to this is Arrow, showing the bands softer side, before turning it up loud once more.

While In Hearts Wake have already pretty much cemented their position as one of Australia’s favourite metalcore bands, the band have once again done what they do best, sing about what is close to them, with passion, in hopes to help change the world for the better.

Ark is the same In Hearts Wake we all know and love and Australia will get a taste of some of these songs live, come July when the band graces venues across the country in support of the album.

Rating: 7/10

Ark is out now via UNFD

THE USED ANNOUNCE AUSTRALIAN TOUR

THE USED ADD AUSTRALIA TO THEIR 15TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR

If you are anything like me, you were jealous when The Used announced their 15th Anniversary tours in America and Europe. Australian fans have no fear! As you will be happy to know that the band bringing the tour down under this November/December, playing both their self-titled album and ‘In Love and Death’ in full over two nights in each city! This is one tour you certainly do not want to miss out on!

THE USED AUSTRALIAN TOUR DATES

e60ed0c3-5d55-40b7-94c2-ae2b097d0e20

Tickets are on sale Monday 2nd May, 9am local time via www.tickets.destroyalllines.com with VIP and limited discounted tickets for both nights. More information can be found on the website.

www.destroyalllines.com

 

LIVE MUSIC REVIEW – ASKING ALEXANDRIA

LIVE MUSIC REVIEW –

ASKING ALEXANDRIA

Asking Alexandria

Supported by Blessthefall and Buried in Verona

HQ Adelaide

10th of April 2016

Most people spend their Sundays resting for the long week of work ahead, however that wasn’t the case for the many keen music fans in Adelaide, lining up to catch Asking Alexandria on their first Australian headlining tour. If we had work or school the next day, not a care was given.

Sydney’s Buried in Verona were first up for the night and managed to pull a very decent crowd for an opening act, the crowd giving them plenty of energy in return. Songs like ‘Four Years’ and ‘Dig Me Out’, singled out the fans in the crowd, jumping at the chance to sing along with the words or start a circle pit.

It had been two years since Blessthefall had headlined the Boys of Summer tour in Australia, and with a new album under their belts, I was keen to see them play again. The quintet from Arizona stepped up the intensity with a remix intro before getting into ‘Hollow Bodies’ which sent the crowd wild. Newer songs ‘Walk on Water’ and ‘Dead Air’ made the setlist however it crowds favourites from the previous three albums such as ‘Youngbloods’, ‘Promised Ones’ and ‘What’s Left of Me’ that really got the crowd pumped, that and the fact, front-man Beau Bokan offered a high five to anyone who crowd surfed over the barrier. Bokan had so much energy, bouncing around the stage and spraying the front rows with water, it almost felt as though the stage was just too small for him.  He even fell off at one point trying to climb along the side, however he managed to get back up and carry on without even missing a beat. Asking Alexandria’s cheeky guitarist Ben Bruce added to the entertainment by throwing cups off the side of stage at blessthefall’s guitarist Eric Lambert, just for a laugh. Before too soon it was the end of the set, with one last chance to sing along with the band, they finished off with ‘You Wear a Crown but You’re No King’.

It didn’t seem possible at this point but the intensity levels rose again as the crowd waited anxiously for Asking Alexandria to take the stage. These Australian shows were some of the first shows for the band since the release of their latest album The Black and us Aussies were keen to hear them, especially with new vocalist Denis Stoff.

As soon as the intro started, the floor was filled with a sea of screaming, cheering fans ready to give the band a warm Adelaide welcome and sing along to the opening lines of ‘I Won’t Give In’. ‘Let It Sleep’ and ‘The Black’ also featured in the set and showcased just how much the band has grown and matured musically. While Stoff and ex vocalist Danny Worsnop are two completely different musicians, there are some similarities between the two in terms of vocal styles, especially evident when the band played older material, however Denis Stoff has an incredible vocal range, breathing new life into tracks such as ‘Breathless’, ‘Not the American Average’ and ‘A Prophecy’ which sent the crowd nuts. In my opinion Stoff pulled off these songs a lot better than I have ever seen Worsnop do so live in the past. The entire set was filled with energy and enthusiasm from the band that was fully reciprocated by the crowd. Asking Alexandria thanked their fans and left the stage, only to return shortly after for the encore of ‘The Final Episode (Lets Change the Channel), with the entire room shouting ‘OH. MY. GOD’ at the top of our lungs. It was pretty safe to say everyone left HQ hot and sweaty but happy with a huge smile across their faces (and not just because Ben Bruce showed everyone his nipple). Both Buried in Verona and Blessthefall played great sets and with this being my third time seeing Asking Alexandria, it was their best show yet. The night felt like one huge party that never wanted to end. They did not disappoint Adelaide fans, it was energetic, it was heavy and it was the perfect way to spend a Sunday night.

ALBUM REVIEW: THE BLACK – ASKING ALEXANDRIA

THE BLACK – ASKING ALEXANDRIA

Asking Alexandria - the Black album cover

Any doubts about how Asking Alexandria would fare after the departure of singer Danny Worsnop, were erased when the UK metal-core group released single I Won’t Give In back in May last year, introducing Denis Stoff (Make Me Famous and Down & Dirty) to the world as the new vocalist for the band.  Fast forward to March 25th 2016, the band released their fourth and latest album The Black via Sumerian Records.

The Black is Asking Alexandria’s triumphant return to the forefront of the metal-core scene, bringing back all the heaviness we loved from the first two albums, that was lacking on From Death to Destiny (still a great album in its own right). Let it Sleep and The Black are the first two tracks on the album, heavy and fast paced from the get go. After listening to these two songs, I was pretty much hooked.

The album has the hard and fast tracks balanced out with softer, slower more ballad styled pieces in-between. Denis Stoff is a talented vocalist with an incredible range, going from calm clean vocals to the mightiest of screams and growls, flawlessly. Fans that enjoy Ben Bruce’s vocal abilities will be happy to know the album also features more solo parts from the guitarist/vocalist, an element that hasn’t really been featured since the first album. Bruce also has lead vocals on softer track, Gone.

Instrumentally, this album seems a lot more matured and tighter, which reflects the band’s new outlook and its regrouping, which you hear Ben Bruce discuss at the beginning of Sometimes It Ends.

Those that have always been a fan of the band will love this album. Have a listen to it for yourself. If you’re anything like me, you’ll have it on repeat for days. Asking Alexandria are back and better than ever. Their new album may be called The Black but for the band, this is a whole new chapter and their future is bright!

Tracks to listen to: Let It Sleep, The Black and The Lost SoulsI Won’t Give In and Undivided have catchy lyrics that will become sing along crowd favourites at shows in no time.

Rating: 10/10

Live Music Review: AC/DC

AC/DC

The Hives, Kingswood

Adelaide Oval

21st of November 2015

Growing up, I can always remember listening to AC/DC. My parents always had one of their albums around, whether it was in the car or blasting through the speakers at home. I was so excited and happy, even felt honoured to be able to finally see the rock legends play live this year as part of their ‘Rock or Bust’ tour in Adelaide.

Unfortunately we weren’t at Adelaide oval in time to catch young Melbourne band, Kingswood open up the night. Knowing they put on a great show after seeing them at Groovin’ the Moo last year, I hope the early crowd gave them a good audience.

We found ourselves a great viewpoint in Oval A just in time to catch a set from Swedish rockers The Hives. Confident front man Pelle Almquist had moves very ‘Jagger’ like and threw cheeky comments and statements at the crowd, even asking them at one point to yell insults at the band. Their tunes gave rhythm to get you ‘bopping’ along on the spot and their matching attire gave them a very professional look creating a somewhat entertaining performance. At least they eventually managed to get the crowd pumped and ready to go for the main event of the night.

As the intro video played out, the crowd joined with it shouting ‘ANGUS!’ before the stage came alight and alive as AC/DC emerged for title song ‘Rock or Bust’.

Brian Johnson wandered from one side of the stage to the other, while Angus Young did his famous ‘duck walk’ and hopping about like a schoolboy in uniform (literally), proving that age is just a number. The crowd too followed this motto, ranging from some elderly fans among the mostly middle aged group, through to one boy who was a couple of rows in front of us, who would have been no more than 5 years old!

Everyone was happy with the set list full of classics like ‘Back in Black’, ‘Thunderstruck’ ‘High Voltage’ and ‘Hells Bells’ (complete with a giant swinging AC/DC bell). There was head banging and devil horns galore and as the sky grew darker, the stands lit up with glowing and flashing red devil horns headbands, many fans had bought from the merchandise tents beforehand.

The crowd really got dancing and in a sing-along mood with ‘You Shook Me All Night Long’ and ‘T.N.T’, preparing themselves for ‘Let There Be Rock’ which featured a guitar solo from Angus, the longest guitar solo I have ever heard, playing over 10 minutes, complete with confetti and the whole stage to himself. The band then rejoined him on stage, through the pyrotechnic flames for the encore of ‘Highway to Hell’ and of course rounding out the evening with ‘For Those About To Rock (We Salute You)’.

While it wasn’t much of a talkative affair between the band and the crowd, it didn’t need to be. We were there to party and rock and that is what we did. Who knows how long it will be until we see AC/DC back in Adelaide, if at all. The night was an incredible ‘Acca Dacca’ experience I will never forget.

ALBUM REVIEW: ENEMA OF THE STATE – BLINK182

Blink182 are a “pop punk” or “pseudo punk” rock band, when Enema of the State was released, the band consisted of Travis Barker (percussionist and vocalist), Mark Hoppus
(bass guitarist and co-vocalist), Thomus DeLonge (lead guitarist). It was released on June 1st, 1999 being their third album it featured 12 songs.

imagesThe overall feel of the album was to do with relationships ending or breaking up, although they did have a few songs in Enema of the State that broke that trend. Such as “Aliens Exist” which as the title suggests it is to do with aliens existing, depending on the copy whether it is live or not some of the lyrics may change as they like to have fun with their songs.

One of the other songs that had a different theme was “Adam’s Song”. This song is about teenage suicide, this song is played with care. It was inspired by an email of a child’s suicide letter to his parents. The song ended with the message that things will get better. This was classified as the band’s first mature song.

Most of the songs in the album have very similar beats you might find yourself having one set of lyrics stuck in your head and then end up jumping to a completely different song in your mind and not even realise that you changed songs for a moment or two.

Rating 8/10