Updated: Mar 19

If you haven't already gathered, this blog is designed as a place for me to rant about my life and whatever else I want to rant about and you lucky souls have the pleasure of reading it.

But I also want to discuss my love for music with you as it is, and has always been, a big passion of mine.

So this is going to be my first music-related post but it also happens to cross over into my personal life as well.

Keep reading and you will find out why.

The song that I am going to review today comes from a little Yorkshire lass called FINOLA who is 23 and originally from Leeds. She now resides in Manchester where she has lived for over 5 years and for 3 of those years she studied at BIMM and gained a 2:1 in Songwriting.

However, her biggest accomplishment since moving to Manchester is meeting me and being my housemate.

Myself and Finola met back on Monday 15th September 2014 (I have a weird memory, sorry) when we moved into the same halls of residence. She was studying Songwriting and I was studying Music Industry Management so instantly we had a musical connection.

Throughout the years we have grown far too fucking close and we have both come to realise just how weird we are in each other's company. As well as still living together, we actually work together as well so there is really no escaping each other. Maybe we wouldn't keep each other as close as we do if we didn't know each other's deepest and darkest secrets...

I figured I would give a little backstory on mine and Finola's relationship and be honest with you that this review is going to be slightly biased. How can I not be? She's one of my best friends after all.

But in all honesty, I said to Finola that I was starting a blog and without her even asking me, I told her that I would review her music. And of course I can't say that this is going to be a completely fair review based on my relationship with her but what I can tell you is that if I didn't enjoy her music or rate her as a musician I would never have offered to do a write up for her.

So with that being said, lets actually review the damn song.

If any of you have followed Finola's music career then you will know that she hasn't released any new music since her last single “Losing Value” back in April 2018. It was an incredibly emotive number that spoke openly and honestly about the breakdown of a relationship that ultimately left her feeling worthless.

Now here comes “Better Off Without You” and she has clearly gone from feeling worthless to now knowing that this certain boy isn't worthy of her.

The second the song starts you are met with an infectious guitar riff played by Jack Wild.

(Shout out to Finola's extremely talented band consisting of Jack on guitar, Nick on the bass and Sam on the drums.)

The song, whilst staying true to Finola's country influences, definitely feels very fresh and seems to incorporate a lighter and poppier approach than some of her previously released material. And Judging by her latest music video and photos maybe blondes do have more fun...

One thing that I will always give Finola credit for is her skill for being able to create memorable melodies whilst maintaining clever and almost poetic lyrics. “You can't keep letting go, eventually your karma gets you so...” and “a weight's been lifted, I'm not conflicted about how we used to be” are perfect examples of this. I could delve more into her discography to further highlight this to you all but the word count would be far greater than I am hoping it to be and it will also ruin the surprise when you discover the lyrical gems for yourself.

As well as being able to carve strong and catchy melodies, she also manages to be quite creative in how she switches up the lyrics in her choruses to portray different emotions. For example, the initial chorus of Better Off With You addresses the hurt Finola suffered at the hands of her ex but by the final chorus, she expresses she is “relieved” that he set her free, all whilst sticking to the original melody.

The song is charming, sassy and ridiculously infectious and if this is Finolas “comeback” single, then I eagerly await what is to follow in 2020.

(I already know what she has got in store and hand on heart it honestly gets better so make sure you keep an eye out for her.)

So, congratulations Finola on your comeback/ welcome back to the music scene and I fully look forward to seeing you blow up in the new year.

To conclude this absolutely, non-bias review, one thing I will say is that I have seen first hand just how hard it is for an independent solo act to pursue a career in the music industry due to money and time constraints, so if you have a spare moment please go and give Finola a follow on all her socials - @finolamusic, and keep an eye out for everything she has coming up.

Make sure you give Better Off Without You a cheeky stream on your chosen platform and whilst you're at it, check out the rather amusing music video embedded at the top of this page and you never know... you might spot a familiar face.


- Jordan

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