Hello and welcome back to another edition of What’s On My Playlist ! (does that sound like the opening of a game show of some sort? lol).
I don’t know if it’s nostalgia, but lately, I find myself listening to a lot of songs that I used to love back in my college days. I was a self-professed ’emo’ : all-black get-up, heavy eyeliner, long side-swept hair, a MySpace account with band wallpaper and an MP3 with the likes of Alesana, My Chemical Romance, 30 Seconds to Mars and Saosin. College was a difficult time, and I was a very angry and rebellious teen. Music helped me get through all the emotional turmoil.
Now that the future seems uncertain, there is a measure of solace in the familiarity of these songs. There’s also that saying: “You can take the girl out of the emo, but you can never take the emo out of the girl”. Okay so I made that up from Sweet Home Alabama, but you get my drift. 😛
Without further ado:
Does it feel like we’ve never been alive?
Does it seem like it’s only just begun?
Once upon a time, I loved 30 Seconds to Mars. This was before Jared Leto became the Joker and the band changed their sound into something more Christian worship-py. Their new songs are not bad; they’re just not what made me fall in love with their sound in the first place. I understand that like everything else, bands have to evolve with the times, but I do miss their A Beautiful Lie days. (I watched the MV for From Yesterday on MTV, back when MTV still played real music, and was blown away by the artistry and the production).
Dear Agony Just let go of me Suffer slowly Is this the way it’s got to be? Dear Agony
Breaking Benjamin has amazing songs, not just in terms of melody but also the beautiful angsty lyrics that they write, which seem to speak to lost and hurt souls. They’re also one of the rare few that have maintained their style, despite being on the scene for over two decades and having numerous lineup changes. Dear Agony is one of my favourite albums by the band. There’s a story about how the lead singer, Benjamin Burnley, was battling chronic illnesses from alcoholism, and Dear Agony was the first one he produced while entirely sober. The cover photo of the album features Burnley’s brain scan.
With your feet in the air and your head on the ground Try this trick and spin it, yeah Your head will collapse If there’s nothing in it And you’ll ask yourself
The original is great, but Placebo‘s cover of Pixies’ Where Is My Mind (from Fight Club) has such a melodramatic yet haunting quality. It’s not an understatement to say that Placebo saved me from a very dark place. Their songs may seem depressing af but they’re actually really cathartic to listen to.
Moving on to newer songs, I’ve been listening to more metal lately:
My hands are painted red
My future’s painted black
I can’t recognize myself, I’ve become someone else
My hands are painted red
Apparently this song was inspired by Randy Blythe’s time in a Czech prison, after he was charged with manslaughter for allegedly pushing a fan offstage, which led to the fan’s death from injuries sustained from the fall (security members and promoters failed to stop the fan from climbing onto the stage uninvited, not once but several times). He was eventually acquitted of all charges, and LoG fans will no doubt say Blythe was not at fault because the fan had invaded a space he was not supposed to be on in the first place (and also allegedly pushed Blythe while he was playing), but I’m not going to argue about the morality of Blythe’s actions. That being said, 512 is one of my favourite LoG songs, not just in terms of the lyrics, but also the melody and vocals (the growls and screams at the chorus always gives me chills).
Above my head, they’re circling
The vultures want what’s left of me
I sacrificed it all and I will fight
Trivium’s Until The World Goes Cold is best listened to on full blast with headphones – there are lots of nuances that you might miss if listening on speakers. I love the energy on it and the message is inspiring – it’s telling someone to continue fighting and hoping for the best.
Fun fact: Heavy songs relax me more than calming ones (?) I don’t know why lol. I guess it’s cathartic ? I usually have a lot of pent-up tension when I’m stressed, and it tends to explode so I need a way to get rid of it so listening to heavy beats helps. Anyone else experience the same?
BONUS throwback from 2016 @ Escape The Fate Live in KL with Danial. I’m too old to mosh with the kids these days.
Let me know your song suggestions in the comments below!