This holiday season, consider me your mixtape therapist. Every week throughout December, I’ll be posting five songs to help you soundtrack various holiday season scenarios. And while you get your mixtapes ready, you can catch up on the insane abundance of quality music from this year, since all featured songs are from 2013. –Claire
So many parties. So many tiny foods. So much “Am I wearing this again?” and “This is the one week of the year I can wear this” (s/o to my reindeer socks, stay with me all year). So many people and conversations and trying to figure out where to leave your coat. The holidays! They’re fun!…right? Right. But you can be forgiven for forgetting that in a wave of can-I-just-sit-on-my-couch-and-eat-a-wheel-of-Brie exhaustion.
Can you? Yes. Should you?…yes, of course, wheel-of-Brie mixtape coming soon. But when you want to go out and enjoy yourself, be prepared. These couple festive weeks can be met with energy and excitement if you have the right listening material ready. Turn these on and turn them up before you head out for the night.
“The Mother We Share” by CHVRCHES
“The Mother We Share” is a delicious synthpop extravaganza. With it’s big textured sound and infectious chorus, it’s a touch too slow for the dance floor, but perfect for the hours before the party, when you need to pop up your spirits and get ready to be fun. Exhausted your store of party small talk? Review awesome feminist 2013 moments, like this article by Lauren Mayberry (lead singer of CHVRCHES) that details the rampant sexism she’s encountered since the band blew up, and challenges why this is commonplace for female musicians. (I’m sure all your friends and random party strangers want to discuss this. If not, come find me at the cheese table, we’ll chat.)
“Lost Weekend” by The So So Glos
Tonight! It’s all happening TONIGHT! And you’re young and there’s eager, joyous rock with loads of guitar and gentle lyrics that explode into happy snarled yells. The work week is through and “I’ve seen folks walk across tight ropes/ but they’re more fun to dance across” feels like a solid guiding principle, so start dancing. Go out and get reckless. Let “Lost Weekend” by your rowdy anthem.
“You’re In Love” by Bettie Who
Betty Who is the maestro of sweet, deliriously catchy pop. “You’re In Love” is filled with new love, heady flirtation, and a holiday appropriate nod to kissing on New Years Eve. It’s hard not to break into a grin when it’s playing. The song feels like a full love affair in three minutes, dizzying and gleeful, perfect for spinning and daydreaming.
“Looking for a Fight” by Bleached
Do you need some inspiring aggression before you head out? This is your jam. “Looking For A Fight” combines noisy guitar, insistent drums, and frank vocals and lyrics by the Clavin sisters. “I’d walk you home tonight but you’d better steer clear/ Cause I’m looking for a fight,” they taunt in a way that sounds so inviting, you get a quick hit of that lets-fight-TONIGHT adrenaline. This is perfect for nights when you don’t want to show up sweet and polite, for evenings when you need to be a gleeful badass—which is most evenings, right?
“Young Lady” by Kid Cudi
“Young Lady” is a barrage of compliments paired with an infectious beat, and a haunting circa 2012 Father John Misty sample used in an unexpected and delightful way. You’re beautiful and smart and great, so go have fun. “Keep doing all the great things you’re doing/ You got it going on young lady” is a nice pre-party reminder.