Music and Relationships

It’s just that feeling of being transported somewhere, four months ago or two years ago, when you felt a whole different way. It reminds you of times when you were phenomenally happy and of others when you were so sad. You’re like “I don’t want to be here why is this song doing this to me?” It just floods inside of you and it’s overwhelming – you suddenly think of that person and you’re like “oh god I miss them so much” and then you’re like “wait no I don’t I just love this song” It’s incredible and horrible that a bunch of words and a melody can make you feel that way.

– Johnny Foreigner, concret1

Music can have a strange way of being imprinted into your life. There are moments in my life that will forever be conjured up by just one song, whether it be reminiscing about something not so long ago as University or something quite a long time ago like holidays in my teens or bonfires in summer.

Invariably, as has been proved by the thousands of love-songs that are churned out into the charts, as well as all that awful poetry / songs that angsty teenagers (myself included) write, music and relationships go hand in hand. There have been songs in my life that I refused to listen to because they reminded me of a person I’d rather not remember.

I’d like to think that at the age of 23 I’ve become a little bit mature, and can look back and listen to some of those tracks and enjoy them for what they are, as well as who they remind me of. In a sort of boyfriends I have been way, some of the songs I look back now and wonder what I was thinking about when I dated that person or even listened to that type of music.

I thought, for the sake of posterity and giving people an idea of how easy it can be to relate certain songs to people/events, I’d list them. To protect people’s privacy I won’t be using names, but they are in order from earliest to latest.

1.  NeYo – So Sick

This one makes me chuckle every time I listen to it. I’ve never really been into RnB but I was young back then, I think we danced to this song at my school dance or something. Still surprises when it (admittedly rarely) comes on the radio. Extra points for it being a song about relating songs to people, too!

2. 30 Seconds to Mars – The Kill

Deep into my angsty phase here, hence the penchant for bands including Jared Leto and shouting. Another relatively bitter song, too, which I have only just noticed, I hope this isn’t a trend.

3. Bloc Party – Flux

This is my ultimate throwback song. This one has some pretty vivid memories for me in a classic “what could have been” scenario.

4.The National – All the Wine

Back into being angsty, but this time its white-hot man-angst. This song is actually still pretty painful to listen to, I get a little knot in my stomach whenever I hear those first guitar strings go. A song about getting hammered, as well, so I’m doing well on the “definitely not bitter” side of things…

5. Bombay Bicycle Club – How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep

It was a toss up between this one and another song, but this one wins simply because it actually makes me smile. Not very often you can fully think back at a relationship (that’s not a silly high-school one) and feel happy about it, even though it ended.

So there’s five that cause me the most nostalgia. There are of course a number of other for smaller events in my life, but it goes to show how a varied selection of songs can have such different meanings to just one person. I imagine if I came back to do this when I hit thirty I’ll have plenty more songs to feature. It’s been interesting to go back and revisit these songs too, there are some memories that should never be locked away forever.

My top 5 remixes of 2013

I spend a lot of my time listening to indie music. What I also like to dabble in are remixes of said genre. Indie can be a very varied music style, and seeing what DJs can come up with the songs is a great exploration. Sometimes they can sound jilted, but sometimes someone gets it just right. So here’s my top 5 and what I’ve been listening to the most over the past year.*

5. Alt-J – Fiztpleasure (Betatraxx Remix)

I’m not a big fan of slow beats or dub-style tracks. But this remix just has everything and only adds to Alt-J’s ethereal style.

4. Of Monster and Men – Yellow Light (Cillo Remix)

I listen to a lot of Cillo’s remixes, he has such a liquid sound that makes nearly everything he touches chilled out.

3. Bombay Bicycle Club – How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep (Voyeur Remix)

This song holds a lot of memories for me, so I keep coming back to it. This remix adds a great twist to the beat.

2. R Kelly ft. The Hood Internet – I’m A Flirt (vs. Broken Social Scene Remix)

Such a weird mash-up remix of a RnB artist and a band playing in 5/8 timing. It just works, and always make me smile.

1. Of Monsters and Men – Little Talks (The Knocks Remix)

I’m a sucker for Of Monsters and Men, but that’s not why this is #1. This remix is the perfect example of how to take a song and completely rework it. Knocks changed it from a folky-ballad into a funky dance tune.

*Remix doesn’t have to be made in 2013

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