Roses are red; romance is dead; we at Hear65 are also celebrating singles too so here's to sending love, no hate.
Every year this day is a puzzling one. Let's face it - why do we still indulge ourselves in a celebration of a 'day of love' when we all know it's more often a cashgrab for sappy souls? We're not being grinch-y here, and we know Singles' Day (which falls on the 11th of November) has also become a marketed day of splurging.
But we thought it'd be awesome to fish out some tracks for those who won't be practising any monogamy, but self-love and beautiful solitude, this 14th of February. Here's to clinking our glasses solo to a playlist of (not) Valentine's Day tunes. For all you stunning individuals out there not participating - stay off social media Monday night, folks.
It’s a Nice Day for Self-Loathing, by Quite Quiet
In the name of self-care, it's a nice day to traipse in the daisy fields to the light sounds of ‘It’s a Nice Day for Self-Loathing’ by Quite Quiet.
Overlaid with a sprightly tune over anxiety-riddled lyrics, Quite Quiet captures the conflicting feelings of wanting to spend more time with your crush, yet feeling inadequate for it. Adorably relatable, they take us on the all-too-familiar journey of fantasizing about our crushes.
I don't know about you, but I think the “magic” is better preserved at a distance.
Annual Home Alone Reruns, by Terrible People
‘Annual Home Alone Reruns’ is an infectious and melodic number by emo band Terrible People. And, so what if you’re home alone/actually watching Home Alone this Valentine’s Day? Crank up the volumes, blast this track in your room and dance to your heart’s desire.
I Don't Want You Anymore, by Caulfield Cult
The now-defunct Caulfield Cult may have been buried but I’m sure most fans still revisit their songs when the mood strikes. As the title suggests, ‘I Don’t Want You Anymore’ is a melancholic ballad about the lack of desire for something you might have had an inclination for in the past.
While this melodic track might not be directed at anyone per se from the band’s perspective, listeners could very well interpret this as, perhaps, the loss of love—very fitting for the whole anti-cupid sentiment if you ask me.
In speaking about the track, ex-vocalist Nicholas Wong said: “‘I Don't Want You Anymore’ is a finger to the bad things in my life, not exclusive to a person, but to bad relationships in general, bad feelings, bad habits, and bad decisions. It's been almost 7 years since and I must say it truly represented a turning point in my life and everything only got better since. I hope anyone who needs to is able to give the finger to the bad things in their life too. Happy Valentine's Day, flowers are a scam.”
The takeaway from this is: get house plants instead.
You Suffer But Why Is It My Problem, by Wormrot
Off their sophomore album Dirge, this track might just be 4 seconds long but it pretty much sums up the satirical approach we’re taking to this sappy holiday here… the lyrics say it all: "Don't want to hear this again. You suffer, but why is it my problem?"
It seems like the grindcore trio intended for this to be a nod (or even a response) towards pioneering band Napalm Death’s ‘You Suffer’ which would you believe it, is even shorter than this one.
Hatiku Luka Lagi (My Heart Is Scarred Again), by Black Dog Bone
Jiwang is a word in Malay that concisely describes the themes of “romance”, “poetic”, and being “in love” all at once. And when you think of the legendary Malay rock band Black Dog Bone, the immediate association is jiwang.
On ‘Hatiku Luka Lagi’, the sextet vocalise the pain (in true jiwang fashion) that comes when the love of your life leaves you for somebody else, and how it can leave a 'scar on your heart'. Perhaps, love is not all that worth it, and the fuss around Valentine’s Day is nothing but a big sham. Don’t take this writer's word for it though.
Replaceable, by Astreal
"Replaceable/Constantly letting you down/Replaceable/I know it'll all end in tears." Starting off on a simple, sombre intro on the piano, the final track off Light, the seminal shoegaze group's 2017 (and possibly final) endeavour sees vocalist Ginette Chittick lament an ostensibly non-reciprocal relationship, the singer drowning in apprehension as she questions her fungibility.
Coming in at just a minute and a half, Replaceable sits right up there to cap off a candlelit dinner for one, especially when the vino's getting dry.
Cats, Cats and Cats Again, by Cosmic Child
For a track with no mention of felines, Cats, Cats and Cats Again is wonderfully laidback, hingeing strongly on shoegazes' nuance to steer most any production towards melancholia. Frontman Bo encapsulates this modulation fantastically, raising not so much as an eyebrow nor twitch of face to deliver a performance drenched in longing and depression, towards a lover that has long packed and gone away with their feelings. This is peak indulgence, and places sophomore album Blue as an album to weep, wallow, then celebrate unto come Monday night - bygones be bygones!
The deep but sweet turmoil from bedroom shoegaze has long provided an almost savoury nostalgia for a time lived, and as a cat dad myself Cosmic Child have nailed the title on this number.
Too Dead Inside, by Yeule
Night drives. That's the image that comes to mind when the first notes play — there's something deliciously intimate about the haunting tune combined with Yeule’s vocals that leave a sense of contentment.
A confession of feeling ‘Too Dead Inside’, the track calls for an introspective listen on a journey through the night — solo, of course. There’s no better time to listen to your own personal sentiments about death echo back and then conclude with a renewed sense of determination to rediscover the meaning in life, I would say.
I’m Gonna Bounce but I’ll See You Soon G, by Fauxe
Staunch enigma Fauxe employs heavy, hard-hitting prose littered over simple crunched up beats, confessing that he's found the ultimate version of himself as he looks out onto a sky with no sun/no moon/just fuels all grey. The producer has long been thought of as a breath of fresh air amidst overly-zealous productions in his counterparts, and it's hard to make a case otherwise for his brilliant, gut-wrenching storytelling.
Although heavily grappling with themes of growth, I'm Gonna Bounce but I'll See You Soon G perhaps serves as the summary pre-cursor to the beatmaker's follow-up collection in 2020's New Life!, an existential stone's throw away from heavy introspection, evolution, and then some. Amidst its driving bass, the track plunges its listener into unabashed rumination, asking questions of the self, the whole, friendships, and towards its end - lonely kisses without a home.
A foreword - this one hits really really hard.
Never Fishing With You Again, by Carpet Golf
“I don’t think it means as much as it does to me,” opens the one-minute track by the quartet of golfers, and you know what? That makes the most of us as well when it comes to the commercial scales of Valentine’s Day.
The driving bassline catches you right at the get-go, and keeps your head thumping through its eruptive drumlines and Nathaniel Soh’s raucous vocals. They sing about how they’d much rather be fishing with their friends than being alone, and that definitely beats splurging on chocolates and flowers.
Listen to our (not) Valentine's Day playlist on Spotify to get firmly in the mood.