Songs to keep your head above the waves – January 2024
post by Si Martin
Music can be flippin’ great for your mental health. So we’re bringing back a classic HATW feature for 2024 – playlists full of songs to help keep your head above the waves! For January, founder Si has hand picked a selection of bangers that have been getting him through the month. Give it a spin below (or you can click here to listen!) and read what Si has to say about his track choices underneath!
‘LosT’ – Bring Me The Horizon
Ok, so for the longest time I put off sharing songs with swears in them from HATW. We’re all about that family friendly fun, y’know. But we were lucky enough to have a stall at the BMTH show in Cardiff at the start of the month (photo proof below)
But this is a track that really stuck out to me for the line “Why am I this way? What the hell is fucking wrong with me?” and, swears and all, that’s legit how I find myself talking to myself. Just one of those relatable moments. And ultimately, feeling a bit lost, is something that I think we’ve all been through.
‘Seeing Red’ – Architects
Figured we kicked off with a heavy song, so we may as well continue the energy here. There’s not necessarily a positive lyric or message in this song necessarily. But there’s an absolutely heroic “Bleugh” into a big ole riff. And something I’ve come to realise is that big tasty riffs that make me wanna spin kick around my kitchen are actually really good for my wellbeing. Spending time listening (and yes, moshing round the house) to heavy music helps me feel like I’m blowing off steam. And that’s only gonna be a good thing.
‘Renegades of Funk’ – Rage Against the Machine
I had a baby recently! (I’m so tired). And I’ve discovered through much trial and error that the songs that send him to sleep are RATM songs. Very proud dad moment. So I had to put a rage song on here (even if it is a cover). As I was pacing up and down my living room at midnight singing to my baby boy, the line “we change the course of history; every day people like you and me” stood out to me. Let this be a sign that you have the ability within your hands to absolutely change the world. You have infinite potential, and the world needs you in it.
‘Somewhere I Belong’ – Linkin Park
This is a throwback to my teenage years. “I wanna let go of the pain I’ve felt so long – I wanna heal I wanna feel like I’m close to something real”. Oof. Right in the feels. To me, this just speaks to that desire to want to get better. To escape from a negative situation. And I guess we all want to belong. Whether that’s to a group of people, or just being accepted and loved for who we are.
‘Don’t Tell The Boys’ – Petey
Someone sent me this song a few months back, because they thought I’d dig it (and they were right. I do). That small act in itself was super powerful, because it wasn’t some super deep or heavy conversation. It was just someone reaching out to say they’re thinking of me. And that reminded me that I wasn’t taking on the world on my own.
‘Never Let You Down’ – Junior
Ok, ok. Look. It’s my playlist and I’ll include my own band’s music in there if I want to, alright? But fr. I love this song. It’s all about having someone’s back, no matter what. And we all need folks like that in our lives. Plus we made this fun silly video all about Guitar Hero, which I used to love throwing myself into, when I needed a bit of an escape.
‘You’re the Reason I Don’t Want the World to End’ – The Wonder Years
The Wonder Years are a super important band for me personally, and a huge reason why HATW even exists. Check out this OG blog post and you’ll see what I mean. The band have grown up at the same time as I have, and this closing track from their latest album hits the hardest. It’s all about the singer having a kid (just like me!) and no longer wanting to die (just like me!) cuz he’s gotta protect his kid. I literally get goosebumps every time I listen to this. One of those tracks where the emotion will hit you even if you don’t have kids.
‘The Angel in the Marble’ – Holding Absence
You might have spotted that the lovely lads in Holding Absence have been long time supporters of HATW, and I’ll always be grateful for that (that’s their guitarist in our ‘Things to Try’ images!). This is another album closer, off of a recent drop. And it’s the end of the song that really gets me. “I am a puzzle, I am a painting, I am a work of art in the making”. To me, speaks to the fact that we’re all works in progress, learning and growing from the struggles that get thrown our way.
This is the perfect time to throw in a reminder about our ‘a constant work in progress’ hoodies. 👀
‘Superman’ – Lazlo Bane
Another baby related song choice. Sorry not sorry. But I’ve started watching Scrubs for the first time (shocking. It’s taken me SO long to actually watch it). And this is the theme song for Scrubs. It’s a show that’s kept me sane while being up at all sorts of weird times of day and night trying to get our baby to sleep. But the line “I can’t do this all on my own” is a very powerful one. In my context, I absolutely couldn’t be doing the baby thing all on my own. But in anyone’s context, it’s absolutely ok to ask for help. You shouldn’t feel like you have to take things on on your own. There are people on your side. And admitting you need help isn’t a sign of weakness. At all.
‘Chinese Satellite’ – Phoebe Bridgers
This whole album has taken up the majority of my Spotify Wrapped every year since it came out in 2020. Great big banger. I don’t think there’s any clever mental health life lessons to pull from it necessarily. It just puts a big smile on my face throughout the whole thing. And I hope it’ll put a smile on your face too.
‘Land Where I Land’ – Novo Amor
Ok. Another biased choice. When I’m not doing HATW, I’m playing drums on tour for Novo Amor. This literally a couple of days old release is a nice mellow little number to help calm down the end of this playlist. The line in the chorus of “Just get a little rest sometime; I’d care a little less if I could” speaks to me both from needing a rest (naps are great and we should all take them). But also from overthinking everything. Something I’m working on is not worrying what other people think about me, and we’ve still got a way to go, but it’s good to have some reminders that other people are going through it too.
‘I Giorni’ – Ludovico Einaudi
See now. What I’ve done here is something that I’m a big fan of. I’ve steered this playlist from starting out super heavy, and then gradually bringing it down to a calmer vibe. Doesn’t this feel like a world away from the BLEUGH from that Architects track? It’s actually a really neat little trick. If you’re feeling angry, you don’t wanna straight away put on some calm music. You wanna process those emotions of anger, and then gradually work your way through feeling different kinds of way, til you’re ready to put on some chill piano music from the GOAT, and get some sleep.
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