5 Tips To Stay Motivated During Syllabus Week — and My Personal Back To School Playlist

uic.jpgUIC’s Brutalist architecture might be unique in Chicago, but it doesn’t mean it’s attractive. University Hall looks like a giant air conditioner.

Hey, how’s it going? Matt Cuartero here.

I just wanted to take a quick moment to welcome you to my blog here at UIC Radio: M4 – Matt’s Monday Morning Mailbox (although I do not always release on Mondays exclusively). I answer viewer’s submitted questions, and I also like to write about the military, music, video games, and track and field. I also do reporting on school events from time to time. If you’re returning to UIC, welcome back to another great year; thank you for joining me again. If you’re a first year student here, I welcome you too. I hope you’ll find Chicago an exciting city to be in.

With a new year comes new classes, responsibilities, and opportunities. It also comes with what I like to call “Warm Up Season”. I don’t know about you guys, but the first few weeks of school are always my laziest. I don’t know; until I realize that classes are getting serious (usually I am notified by this with a bad grade) I take a long time to get into action and really buckle down on studying. I wanted to provide you with a plan of attack of my own to hit the ground running and get the jump on the semester before it gets a jump on you. Some say the most important part of the semester is the very beginning and I would agree with that.

Continue reading “5 Tips To Stay Motivated During Syllabus Week — and My Personal Back To School Playlist”

Looking For New Music?


in the midst of procrastinating to study for finals, i put some playlists together on spotify.

i highkey have a bomb taste in music, so if you’re looking for something new, or something to fit a certain mood, check these playlists out:

(i PROMISE these are good)


for nights out with the girls / pregaming / promiscuous and saucy moods


f*ck boy rap, but like, good f*ck boy rap

Continue reading “Looking For New Music?”

Best Albums Of 2017

2017 is almost at an end and though it has been a terrible year for politics, and basically everything else, 2017 however, has been an incredible year for music. 

Back in March, I put out an article highlighting some of my favorite albums that had been released early on in the year. Since then, we have been graced with even more outstanding, 10/10, listen-from-start-to-finish albums, so I would like to take a moment to showcase my top 15 picks (in a very particular order) of 2017: 

15.) Ariel Pink – Dedicated To Bobby Jameson


Dedicated To Bobby Jameson is Ariel Pink’s 11th studio album. The album is an intimate and humble piece, containing a combination of pop and rock anthems.

TOP SONGS:  I Wanna Be Young // Bubblegum Dreams // Do Yourself A Favor 

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A Welcome Back To My Blog


 Blogging season is back and I have album reviews and musical opinions ready to go, but to kick things off, here is a little summary of how my life has been going since my last post:

This week I’ve cried to ‘Supercut’ by Lorde approximately 68 times. I’ve drafted up several different blog posts, re-read them, and then deleted them out of fear of sounding mindless and shallow. I’ve had zero will to do the things I’m supposed to be doing, and instead have been hoarding bottles of Smirnoff in my room.

This past week I’ve embarrassed myself on at least 16 different occasions, one of them being right in front of Nick Jonas. I am going to snap my neck if one more person comments on how “edgy” my new haircut looks. I despise the word, “edgy” with a passion and being, “edgy” was not what drove me to cut off 12 inches of my hair, but in fact was just the aftermath of a full-blown Britney Spears styled mental breakdown, which I am still having. Evidently.

I out of impulse booked an appointment to get another tattoo (which I really can’t afford). I also booked plane tickets to go back to California (which I also, really can’t afford).

Ever since I went to California this summer, I’ve been extremely frustrated every morning when I wake up and realize that I am no longer in California. I whole heartily believe that is where I should be, and not in the Midwest, causing me to have even more of an existential crisis.

I’m on the verge of dropping every single one of my classes, I busted my iPhone, and I finished watching every season of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” on Netflix and now I don’t know what to do.

And that’s been a brief summary of my life since my last blog post.

Though I sound like a total pessimist, I promise I am not. I’m living in a “glass is half empty, half full” kind of world right now, and while part of my life is going great (I truly do have a lot to be thankful for), and the other half is going not so great, I am trying my hardest to see the “half full” side.

With that being said, however, today is just not a “half full” kind of day, so here’s a playlist I put together to soundtrack this weird funk I’m in.

  This year on my blog, I’m sticking to my theme of music news and reviews, with a political piece here and there, and in addition to that, I am also going to push myself to write a personal storytime piece every other week, so stay tuned! 

If you want to keep up with with my saucy life, follow me here:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/tarabolar

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tarabolar/

New Music Friday


Hello there, music lovers! Tuesdays will still be the day I upload new articles, but additionally, every Friday I will now also be uploading a nifty little playlist for you all to check out! Songs will include mostly new releases, or just songs that I have been diggin’ that week that I feel could use more love. Hope you all enjoy it and find something new to vibe to, happy weekend!

Blahsmopolitan No. 4: “The Panic at KΔP” AKA “Veni, Vidi, Veni Again”

This is Blahsmopolitan, a weekly column about one freshman’s misfortune as he navigates his New Adult Life in Chicago, and the songs that soundtracked it. New stories are posted every Thursday, alongside a curated Blahsmo playlist available on Apple Music and Spotify to complement your reading and get you through the week with some new music. This week, our columnist gets a lesson in weed culture, outsmarts some sorority girls, and goes home with a stranger in hopes that you can learn from his mistakes.

Stream this week’s playlist on Apple Music or Spotify. Blahsmopolitan and its playlists contain mature themes.

Before I begin this story, I want to be very clear on my feelings about U of I. The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a god forsaken land. God has left the building, and 18-21 year olds have been left to their own devices to roam the Earth and think of new mixed drinks and hazing methods. This story takes place within the span of 24 hours. It took 24 hours to do all of what you are about to read. U of I is where innocence goes to get tied up by all four limbs and attached to pygmy horses, yanked at with just shy of the correct force to totally sever it- forever in a limbo between responsibility and debauchery.

If you have even the mildest case of FOMO, I do not recommend going for any longer than a weekend. If you are a person like me, who does stupid things for the story, do not go at all. I am already considering going back to have more material for this column. It is the sort of place where every time you go out, you will be greeted by some sort of mistake that informs who you are to your very core, and you will never regret it, but you will almost definitely fail your classes if you have even the slightest dwindling in your willpower.


Last Friday night, I got a bad feeling.

Continue reading “Blahsmopolitan No. 4: “The Panic at KΔP” AKA “Veni, Vidi, Veni Again””

Not Ur Honeypie: Ultimate Anti-Valentine’s Day Playlist

As many of us know, there is a very important holiday coming up. It’s a time to celebrate love with our significant other and buy them nice things and take them out to dinner as you each express your adoration for one another.

It’s also a day that the rest of the singletons of the world want to vomit their brains out from seeing lovey dovey gushyness everywhere.

Can you guess the holiday? Valentine’s Day.

not ur honeypie

I, for one, will say it: I think Valentine’s Day sucks. Don’t get me wrong, I’m totally down for being happy and celebrating love with your significant other, but the whole idea of this one day being so important for a couple’s love is rather exhausting…especially for those people don’t have a significant other to celebrate it with.

However, this is not a day to be bitter and sad over.  This is not a day to feel sorry for ourselves and down in the dumps. That’s just what the Hallmark card sales want you to think. We must not let them think they got to us.

Instead, we are going to remember that love sucks anyway! And in order to do so, I’ve created my very own playlist, titled “Not Ur Honeypie: Anti-Valentine’s Day 2015.”

With this playlist, filled with a selection of rock, pop, rap, and alternative, you will feel empowered throughout your day this upcoming February 14th as you jam out to anti-love songs every time this lovey-dovey holiday threatens to make you want to throw up candy hearts.

With that, I hope your lonesome Valentine’s Day does not suck. If it does, put on this playlist and buy yourself your own flowers and chocolates on sale the next day.