Super Sounds: ‘Hagulgol’ hits
I would very much like to be excluded from this narrative, one that I have never asked to be part of.
Trust Taylor Swift to come up with the perfect response to annoying relatives who keep badgering you about your love life. Yes, tita, some people like being single. Others are single by circumstance, while not a few are single despite wishing otherwise.
But I admit, being single on Valentine’s Day? That’s a more complicated story.
Whether you’re NBSB (No Bae Since Birth) or nursing a broken heart, V-Day can be a witch with a capital B for anyone who longs for someone.
It’s OK to feel your feelings. You can put on a brave face and be the life of the party tomorrow. For now, grieve for your lost loves and what-could-have-beens. Hide under the covers and stay in bed all day. Eat a pint of your favorite ice cream. We won’t judge. We’ll even make you a playlist.
It’s Valentine’s Day and you can cry if you want to (cry if you want to).
“Back to Black,” Amy Winehouse
Amy’s songs are still the best: passionate, vulnerable, sometimes bitter, always honest. “We only said goodbye with words/ I died a hundred times/ You go back to her and I go back to black.” Love can wreck you—all the more if there was no closure.
“Terrible Love,” Birdy (The National cover)
The original by The National is great, but I find that Birdy’s more stripped-down version and ethereal vocals perfectly capture the fear and desperation of someone who won’t commit to a relationship.
“Sweetheart, What Have You Done To Us,” Keaton Henson
I could have made up this playlist entirely of Keaton’s melancholic music and called it a day, but this song flays me. Anger, desperation and hurt—all these come to a head as you mourn the end of a love affair.
Bonus: “Lying to You”—There are moments when you have to be cruel to be kind. One of the most brutally honest breakup songs I’ve ever heard.
“All I Want,” Kodaline
The unanswered questions that crop up during the aftermath are the worst. “But if you loved me/ Why’d you leave me?” Why indeed?
“I Can’t Make You Love Me/Nick of Time,” Bon Iver (Bonnie Raitt cover)
Yeah, I know, “Skinny Love” would be perfect for a cryfest. But Justin Vernon’s emotional cover of these Bonnie Raitt hits is raw and bleak, yet oddly hopeful near the end. It’s sad. It’s real. It’s love.
When a breakup is imminent, you tend to cling to salvage the relationship. But often, what’s done is done, no matter how much you wish it isn’t.
“Tiny Vessels,” Death Cab For Cutie
Pain is universal, regardless if you’re the person whose heart was broken or the one doing the heartbreaking. Real love isn’t a competition. Nobody wins.
“I Know It’s Over,” The Smiths
It’s difficult to pick only one song by The Smiths, but this candid examination of a love lost demands to be heard. It takes a certain level of maturity to realize that maybe, just maybe, you’re the one at fault.
Bonus: “Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me”—The anthem of the perpetually lovelorn. “Last night I felt/ Real arms around me/ No hope, no harm/ Just another false alarm.” Simple yet devastating.
“Let It Die,” Feist
Not all relationships are meant to be. Some are fractured even from the get-go. “Don’t you wish that we could forget that kiss/ And see this for what it is/ That we’re not in love.” The truth, it sucks.
“How to Say Goodbye,” Paul Tiernan
I discovered this song through the coming-of-age film “Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist.” Saying goodbye is never easy but sadly, it is necessary.