Well. It’s been nearly a year since we last did one of these playlists (where did that year go?!) so we figured it was time to put one together again – especially since there’s been so much rad new music recently.
Chance The Rapper – ‘All We Got’
A while back, we were getting people to write out the lyrics that pick them up when they’re feeling down, and one of the first ones was Chance The Rapper: “Everybody’s somebody’s everything; nobody is nothing” – it’s a nice lil reminder that everyone’s fighting their own battles, and everyone is important. Whoever you are, you matter to someone. You’re important. Annoyingly though, it isn’t on Spotify, so I went for ‘All We Got’ – the first track off his album ‘Colouring Book’ . Whenever I listen to Chance the Rapper, I imagine laying on grass in the sun, looking up at clouds, and this chilled song is a great example of why.
Anderson .Paak – ‘The Bird’
“We see the same things, we sing the same songs, we feel the same grief” was the line that stood out to me. This song, like Chance The Rapper, chills me right out, however I’m feeling. I like to lay down with headphones on, and listen to Anderson .Paak when I’m having a lazy Sunday.
Trash Boat – ‘Brave Face’
I think the main sentiment behind this for me was “I know that nothing I write you can change what you’ve been through” – an acceptance that you can’t change the past, and even the best will in the world can’t change what’s happened to you. But you can do something about it moving forward. You can find ways to grow, not ignoring the past, but learning from it.
Holding Absence – ‘Permanent’
Holding Absence have been smashing the UK scene recently – a super hard working band, who make beautiful & emotional music that doesn’t shy away from talking about struggles with mental health. Their first single Permanent in particular touches on the idea of struggling with not wanting to be here, but the fact that dying is a permanent solution to a temporary problem “you want to die today, you don’t want to die forever”. It also brings in hope – the idea that you’ll get there eventually “you will find a home, you will find a place” in this big crazy world, you’ve just gotta keep on hanging in there.
Plus they’re a Cardiff band, and we love a bit of local talent.
Rembrandts – ‘I’ll Be There For You’
Hey, who doesn’t love F.R.I.E.N.D.S.? This just came on the radio as I was putting this list together, and as cheesy as this song is, the chorus is a nice sentiment isn’t it? Look out for your friends & take time to check in with them regularly & if someone’s done that for you, return the favour! Plus, there’s nothing wrong with a bit of cheese every now and then. Plus you can’t help but do the claps in the first verse.
Stormzy – ‘Blinded By Your Grace, Pt. 2’
I wasn’t sure what to expect from Stormzy’s album – grime isn’t my usual kind of scene. But I had a bunch of people tell me to listen to it, so I did, and I was pleasantly surprised. There’s a bunch of different stuff on the album, including some really gospel-y stuff, so I wanted to include it because it took me by surprise, and I like the idea of not judging a book by its cover. I also saw an interview where Stormzy mentioned writing about his battle with depression too – and it’s great that people from all scenes are starting to talk openly about mental health, and using music to work through it.
Stranger Things – ‘Eleven’
I recently re-watched Stranger Things, and I forgot how much I love that show. Obviously because it hooked me in and ended each episode with me desperate to find out the answers to all the questions I had. But also because there’s a really lovely theme throughout the show about friends looking out for each other, and accepting people who some might see as “weirdos” as special, valuable & unique. I won’t go into any more detail in case you haven’t watched it yet, but the soundtrack is beautiful. It’s also actually really great to work to, if you’re ever in need of some chill music to help you concentrate/study/stare out the window on a train & pretend you’re in a movie to.
Novo Amor – ‘Carry You’
Novo Amor is featured on all sorts of Spotify playlists. And with good reason. It’s beautiful music, and the single from the new EP ‘Bathing Beach’ is no exception. From listening to this, I took away the idea of looking out for the people you care about. Perhaps in a less cheesy way than that Rembrandts song, though.
You Know The Drill – ‘Repose’
I was lucky enough to get to do a short tour with these guys earlier this year, and they just won a competition to play at Slam Dunk, which is awesome because they totally deserve it. Every night I watched them play this song, which is about losing someone, and it stood out as a highlight of their set. I also really love the hook/lyric “You make my life much better” – which is a sentiment we’re trying to share loads with our “I’m Glad You Exist” campaign.
Paramore – ‘Hard Times’
It actually worked out pretty well that I didn’t get this playlist finished in time for the start of May – cuz it means I got to include this absolute banger, which also actually has a pretty posi message in there too. I love it when a plan comes together.
Loyle Carner – ‘NO CD’
This song is a total banger. The first time I heard it playing in a store and I ran around asking everyone if they knew what it was. Great beats, and gets across the sentiment of loving music. And I love music.