Music Favourites

Beneath the sound waves of guitar riffs and bass drops of dubstep, beneath the electrifying tune of techno music and brilliantly catchy dance anthems, there is a genre of music more uncommon to people – indie/alternative.

Personally, what I love the most about indie music is that every song serves to spark up different emotions. You have the ‘lullaby versions’, where the gentle thrumming of the bass beats in sync with your heart and the soothing voice of the vocalist washes over you like calm waves. Those songs make you want to look out the window, sigh in content and watch raindrops trickle down the glass panels as you wrap yourself up in a comfortable jumper. But you also have the ‘upbeat versions’ in which every drumbeat makes you want to take a little skip as you walk down the long road with sunlight streaming through the leaves and gently caressing your skin. Songs like these – coupled with the beautiful strums of acoustic guitars – make you feel free of stress and all troubling thoughts, wanting very much to just enjoy an ordinary afternoon.

If you’re the kind of person who lurks around on Tumblr, you’ll find that there are many blogs dedicated to indie artists such as Lana Del Rey, Vampire Weekend or Florence and the Machine. The more popular indie bands now rising to fame would of course be Arctic Monkeys and Foster the People.

Aside from Tumblr, if you’re in need of listening to indie songs, but your playlist is empty, I recommend 8tracks – a website that allows anyone and everyone to submit their own playlists (and fanmixes). Every playlist is categorized not just by music genre, but also according to moods and situations. For example, if you require music to study productively, go search it up! So, try searching in the ‘indie’ or ‘alternative’ tag – there are definitely nice playlists waiting for you out there.

Or, if you want quick recommendations, I’ve listed 5 songs right here. Happy listening!
1. Do I Wanna Know? by Arctic Monkeys
2. Rivers and Roads by The Head and The Heart
3. Are You What You Wanna Be by Foster the People
4. Changing of the Seasons by Two Door Cinema Club
5. Here It Goes Again by OK Go

– Yan Ling (4U)

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Music Review

Good Boy is a song by Big Bang members G-Dragon and Taeyang. It was released on November 21, 2014 as the first Hip Hop project from YG Entertainment. Their new song started off with a big bang (pun intended)! It featured as a YouTube Music Moment for the YouTube Music Awards 2015. In less than 24 hours the music video gained more than 2 million views. Good Boy received a lot of fame. The song was called an amazing club song. After Good Boy was released, it achieved a perfect all-kill on Korean charts such as Genie, Mnet, Olleh Music, Bugs, Daum Music, Naver Music, Monkey3, Cyworld Music, and Soribada. The song also entered the US ITUNES Chart at number 87 and the US Hip-Hop/Rap chart at number 18. It also reached the top 10 in other countries. The song also reached number 1 on Billboard’s World Digital Songs chart, marking the third time a Korean act had topped the chart after PSY and 2NE1, which makes it one of the most popular songs in the Korean-pop industry.

The song also has a catchy tune and personally, I am quite addicted to it! Both Taeyang and G-Dragon can sing and dance really well and they are also really talented and popular worldwide, which makes it a bonus for their new hit song. Their previous big hit was ‘Fantastic Baby’ which was out a few years ago, featuring all the members and now, they’re back with a whole new concept and style which caught the attention of many worldwide!

The song is not only catchy, but the dance for the song is simple to learn as well, allowing fans and viewers to learn the dance. Both of them also worked hard to be able to achieve such fame and attention worldwide and I have to say, they definitely deserve it! Seeing their music become so well-known and loved by many, their fans would definitely be proud of them and will all be looking forward to more amazing songs to come!

-Chevonne Law (3 Justice)

good boy

Book Review

The Dog Whisperer

Have you heard of the name Cesar Millan? The one who hosts the show, Dog Whisperer. His ability to discipline the dogs are rather extraordinary seeing how he can shoot an aggressive dog down just with the point of his finger. If I could do that, it would be like dream come true for me.

Cesar Millan is a Mexican American. As a self-taught dog trainer, he is widely known for his television series, Dog Whisperer.  Cesar grew up working with animals on his grandfather’s Sinaloa farm Because of his natural way with dogs, he was called “the dog boy”. Later he grew up and went to US, his first job being a dog groomer. Now, his work focuses on handling a dog with what he calls “calm-assertive energy”. He approaches dog behaviour by teaching dog owners to establish their role as calm-assertive pack leaders.

According to Millan, dogs have three primary needs. exercise, discipline and affection. Cesar Millan has always dreamed of starting a massive movement of pack leadership to help animals and humans achieve balance. So he founded the Millan Foundation.

The way which he expresses himself in front of other people is really amazing, the dogs just seem to obey his every command! Cesar has helped many to overcome their pet problems. Personally, I have a dog at home but he never ever listens to me no matter what I do. Cesar just points his finger at the dog he is disciplining, and the dog just submits to him quietly. Its is really amazing. The man said, “My goal in rehabilitating dogs and training people is to create balanced relationships between humans and canines.” The next time you turn on your tv to watch national geography or other channels, be sure to check out Dog Whisperer!

-Stephanie Guan (2p)

Jokes

Q: What did the duck say when he bought lipstick?
A: “Put it on my bill

Teacher: “If I gave you 2 cats and another 2 cats and another 2, how many would you have?”
Johnny: “Seven.”
Teacher: “No, listen carefully… If I gave you two cats, and another two cats and another two, how many would you have?”
Johnny: “Seven.”
Teacher: “Let me put it to you differently. If I gave you two apples, and another two apples and another two, how many would you have?”
Johnny: “Six.”
Teacher: “Good. Now if I gave you two cats, and another two cats and another two, how many would you have?”
Johnny: “Seven!”
Teacher: “Johnny, where do you get seven from?!”
Johnny: “Because I’ve already got a cat!”

  1. What did the mayonnaise say when someone opened the refrigerator door. A. Close the door I am dressing!
  1. What did the baby corn say to the mama corn?
    A. “Where’s pop corn?

I used to be afraid of hurdles but then I got over it.

I used to think the brain was the most important organ. Then I thought, look what’s telling me that.

A Teacher was once giving a big test. Upon collecting the tests she noticed a note attached to the test with a $100 bill underneath, “one dollar per point please” the note said The teacher returned the test the next day with $40 and a note attached, it said “$40 change!”

Mom, can I have an animal cracker?” asked 3 year old Bob. “Sure Bob,” said his mom. “Open up the box, and take a few.” Forty five minutes later Bob’s mother walked into the kitchen. “Bob, why’d you spill out all of the animal crackers, and what are you looking for?” “It said on the box not to eat it if the seal is broken.” Bob replied “I spilled out the whole box, I looked through all of the animals but I can’t find any seals!”

Jim was in a bad mood, and anyone who got in is way was going to regret it.  Jim walked into his favorite restaurant and plopped himself down on a chair.   “Get me a steak well done with mashed potatoes. ” Three minutes later when his order came, Jim screamed “DIDN’T YOU HEAR ME SAY WELL DONE?!” “Why thank you sir” the waitress smiled,  “that was the first compliment I got all day!”

-Nicolette Kum

Book Review

The Tales of Beedle the Bard contains five richly diverse fairy tales, each with its own magical character that will invariably bring delight, laughter and the thrill of mortal peril. Additional notes for each story penned by Professor Albus Dumbledore will be enjoyed by Muggles and wizards alike, as the Professor muses on the morals illuminated by the tales, and reveals snippets of information about life at Hogwarts. A uniquely magical volume, with illustrations by the author, J.K. Rowling, that will be treasured for years to come.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard comprises of five not-so-average stories for children and adults alike. They are not your typical fairy tales with happily ever afters. In fact, they depict the realities of life all of us go through every single day instead of the carefree dreamlands that so many of us wish to live in. This is what makes The Tales of Beedle the Bard so special, as its stories will stand out and stay in your minds for numerous nights and days.

The Wizard and the Hopping Pot, The Fountain of Fair Fortune, The Warlock’s Hairy Heart, Babbitty Rabbitty and her Cackling Stump and lastly, The Tale of the Three Brothers all tell stories of wizards (and Muggles) who lack something human. Be it kindness, hope, love, or wisdom, the characters in each of these stories are very much like us, all the while missing something very human yet they do not realise it.

Reading The Tales of Beedle the Bard is somewhat like self-discovery. Many of us will soon come to realise that one of the many characters in the book itself resembles us a lot, to which we can’t help but flip right to the end of the story to find out what happened to that character at the very end. The stories themselves also give us many things to ponder about, of life and of self.

The Tales of Beedle the Bard is indeed an excellent read for people of all ages with its humorous descriptions and simple language, which makes it so easy to read. I strongly recommend this book to those who like fairy tales and happily ever afters, since all of you will soon know that happily ever afters do not exist after all.

Done by: Claire Hsieh 3P

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Headlines

Islamic State Crisis: Japanese nationals captured

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was rushing home from the Middle East on Wednesday (Jan 21) to take charge of Tokyo’s response after Islamic State militants threatened to kill two Japanese nationals.

The self-styled Islamic State group (IS) has murdered five Western hostages since August last year, but this is the first time the group has threatened Japanese captives;  the constitutionally pacifist country has steered clear of the armed entanglements of the US, Britain and other Western nations in the Middle East. The ensnarement of two of its citizens in the IS group’s bloody ideological battle is deeply shocking to Japan, and there is likely to be considerable domestic pressure on Abe to try to negotiate for their release, especially since his military only operates in a self-defence capacity at home.

In footage posted on militant websites, a black-clad militant brandishing a knife addressed the camera, standing between two hostages wearing orange jumpsuits. Speaking in English with a British accent, the militant demanded $200 million for the men’s release, linking the ransom to a pledge Abe made on Saturday of non-military aid to help the government of Iraq and to assist Syrian refugees who have fled the Islamic State’s brutality.

“To the prime minister of Japan … you willingly have volunteered to take part in this crusade,” said the masked man, who looked and sounded like the militant shown in other filmed beheadings.

“And to the Japanese public: Just as your government has made the foolish decision to pay $200 million to fight the Islamic State, you now have 72 hours to pressure your government in making a wise decision, by paying the $200 million to save the lives of your citizens,” he said.

“Otherwise, this knife will become your nightmare.”

A defiant Abe vowed he would not bow to “terrorism”, telling a news conference in Jerusalem that he “strongly demanded that they not be harmed and that they be immediately released“.

One of the hostages, 47-year-old Kenji Goto, is a respected Japanese freelance journalist who went to report on Syria’s civil war last year.” I’m in Syria for reporting,” Goto wrote in an email to an Associated Press journalist in October before his abduction. “I hope I can convey the atmosphere from where I am and share it.” The other captive, 42-year-old Haruna Yukawa, founder of a private security company, was kidnapped in Syria in August after going there to train with militants, according to a post on the blog he kept.

However, film editor Genta Tamaki noted apparent discrepancies in the shadows cast in the video, which, he said, could indicate that images of the two men had been inserted into the desert footage, since ” these shadows do not look as one might expect in sunlight.”

This might occur if filming was done indoors using several lights and combined with the background later, he said, although he added it was not possible to be certain. It was also noted clothes worn by Yukawa moved more than those Goto was wearing, and neither man flinched when their captor waved his knife near them.  Japanese officials said they would analyse the video to verify its authenticity, though Abe offered no hesitation as he pledged to free the men.

References:

Germaine Lee (2 Truth)

Food Review

Fast food is the term given to food prepared and served very quickly. Although it can be food which is prepared quickly but it typically refers to food served in restaurants with preheated or precooked items conveniently packed for customers to eat there or take-away. Some examples include McDonalds, Burger King and KFC.

Most people are attracted to fast food like bees are attracted to honey. How many times have you gone to a fast food restaurant when you were hungry? Or ordered some burgers and fries because you didn’t want to eat home cooked food? Not only are these types of food tasty and filling, they are also extremely unhealthy.

In junk food, there is a lot of salt added to enhance the taste. It is reasonably priced and convenient but we don’t need an expert to say that they don’t use the best quality ingredients. They make the food with the cheapest ingredients available and who knows where the hands touching your food have been. The staff at fast food joints may not necessarily be trained in food safety and hygiene. Fries may be tempting but they are deep fried in oil, which leads to extra calories. Fast food looks appetizing but did you know this is only due to the fact that so much preservatives and colourings are added!

The next time you decide to grab a quick meal at a fast food restaurant, think of what I have just mentioned. Perhaps some homemade food with quality ingredients, followed by some fruits would be a better choice.

Sources:

http://www.world-actuality.com/index.php/health/665-top-10-things-why-fast-foods-are-unhealthy

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fast_food

-Jocelyn (2T)

Food Review

After school one afternoon, I came across an interesting advertisement on television. Of all things, it was about the new KFC curry rice bucket. This is not the first rice bucket that KFC has come up with, after the a la king and original recipe ones. The meal was at least 80% of what it looked like in the picture. When I first tasted it, it was still hot with steam coming out, making it difficult for me to differentiate whether it was hot or spicy. The climax of the KFC curry rice bucket was the potatoes which were cooked to perfection. However, the serving size was too much for me because I ended up having quite a bit of leftovers. The crispy popcorn chicken on the bed of chicken rice was nice and bite-sized. Overall, the KFC rice bucket stands out among KFC’s menu of fried chicken but caution has to be given to those who cannot tolerate spicy foods. For just $5, you can have this attractive mix of Popcorn Chicken, curry and potatoes on rice, coupled with a drink of your choice. Just say the catchphrase “Local upsize on 5, sogood” upon ordering and your drink can be upsized for free!

~Trina Chong (3U)

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Credits: http://www.kfc.com.sg)