My year in music according to Last.Fm

Everybody else is doing it, so why can’t I? Apparently listing your favourite songs in descending order and calling them “charts” is a thing nowadays so here is my heavy rotation according to Last.Fm whose algorithm knows me better than the “My Friend Cayla” doll knows your children.

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Was that a “Flashdance” reference at the beginning of the video? Despite being released in 2015, “Easy” is more 80s than the Eighties. To me the song is pure pop music perfection. It’s dreamy, slightly raunchy and makes me feel all blissful inside. Forget Prozac, I get my daily dose of happiness from this song. 

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I just can’t help myself with this song. First of all, the band Hedley is from Canada and I am Canada’s fangirl #1. Second of all, I like anything upbeat, catchy, silly, naughty and creative (Spoiler alert: this song’s got it all). Resistance is futile because my brain is about to be infiltrated with irresistible sound waves that make it impossible to sit still. Who knows what the video is all about, but it’s both hilarious and addictive, so I love it. 

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Have you ever heard of the painting “Nighthawks”? I remember discussing it for hours on end in class and at the end of the day nobody was none the wiser if it depicts an idyllic American diner or a lonely man drinking his coffee by himself and pondering about the world and his state of mind.

Personally, I tend to think the latter is the case. While “Honesty” was released a couple of decades after Edward Hopper’s artwork, I can imagine it just being the kind of song to play in Phillies’ fictional jukebox.

I hadn’t heard the song in about eighteen years until my then-flatmate Alexander decided to sing the song in an improvised Karaoke session. It was at that moment I fell back in love with the tune. Forget “Uptown Girl” or “Piano Man”, this is honestly – pun intended- Billy Joel’s best work. Aren’t we all just looking for an authentic human connection? Aren’t we all sick and tired of lying and being lied to? Aren’t we all looking for someone to relate and empathise? 

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Scottish band CHVRCHES released their third studio album this year and its songs appeal both to one’s ears as well as one’s mind. Finally a band that dares to go beneath the surface and addresses important issues without appearing preachy. Describing why a certain song touches you like it does is one of the most difficult things to do, sometimes you have to just feel it. I’d like to finish this off with an accurate quote by the French author Victor Hugo:

“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent”

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Bonnie McKee’s music videos usually have a captivating narrative. If I had to read a deeper meaning into this one I would say that the protagonist finds herself amidst dull people she can’t identify with because they are all the same. She is starting to feel as though she is different from everyone else and will therefore never be able to feel anything meaningful. In this case she is rescued from the agonising reality by a woman who kisses her and therefore starts awakening her feelings or to put it literally, saves her from the zombies albeit being a werewolf herself. The song is upbeat, catchy and combines everything I am looking for in a song, which are some electronic beats mashed up with a tongue-in-cheek pop/rock attitude. 

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Adam Lambert has been one of my most listened to artist for the past two years. He is not only strikingly gorgeous but he is also extremely talented. His vocal range is impressive and I would even go so far to say he is a modern-day Freddie Mercury (before you say “whoa”, he has been touring with Queen for quite some time). Nobody can argue that Adam Lambert was born to be on stage. I also love that his lyrics are laden with sexual innuendos. He’s an artist through and through who swept me away with his charisma and catchy pop-rock tunes.

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I have a huge girl crush on Bonnie McKee, I am not going to lie. Not many people know that she is the songwriter behind many famous number one songs, but even fewer people know that she is a singer herself. I not only love “I want it all” for its addictive melody and the fact the music video is so reminiscent of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” but also for the fact that she expresses her passion in an intense and raw way without appearing over the top. I just love her authentic display of eroticism and sensuality without being crude.

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“Friends Don’t” is testimony to the fact that I am a hopeless romantic who falls in love too easily and this song had me enchanted right from the start. It’s about two friends who have started falling for each other. Both realise they have already crossed the line between friendship and romance but are uncertain what to do about it. Just in case you ever find yourself in a situation where you wonder whether he loves you or not, listen to this song and save yourself the time it takes to google search a quiz that will reveal all the answers you are hoping to hear. “Friend’s Don’t” will either touch your heart or you don’t have one.

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I will admit that I am a bit late to the party, literally and figuratively speaking. Sia’s “Cheap Thrills” was released in 2016 and is probably one of the most annoying songs I have ever heard. I have heard people say her choreography is genius, I just think it’s weird, and not in a good way.

I am feeling so incredibly ambiguous about the song, I want to hate it but I kind of love it. I definitely can’t stop listening to it, I am hooked and I can’t help it. We can all start a philosophical discussion about what good music is and discover it’s a bottomless pit that leads to more questions than answers, so I will answer the question to what remarkable music is and that is music that is memorable and “Cheap Thrills” definitely falls into that category. Whether that is good or bad is up to subjective opinion and will probably lead to another debate.

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The winner goes to…

CHVRCHES. Apparently, my top most listened to song in 2018 was “Miracle”.

I am super jealous of CHVRCHES front singer Lauren Mayberry, because she is dating Justin Long and he was obviously going to be my boyfriend. Despite that, I love the melancholic-sweet feeling to the song that slowly builds up and becomes dark and real in a subtle but powerful way. I admire the fact that her fragile voice carries this much strength.

Was ist Liebe?

Was war es, das ihr im Unterbewusstsein immer ein Lächeln auf die Lippen zauberte, wenn sie seinen Namen hörte? Woran lag es, dass ihre Augen bei der bloßen Erwähnung seines Namens einen seltsam verträumten Ausdruck annahmen? Weswegen färbten sich ihre Wangen zartrosa, wenn er nur in ihre Richtung blickte? War es so etwas wie Liebe? Und was brachte den Funken in ihren Augen so plötzlich wieder zum Erlischen, wie er gekommen war?

Sie fragt sich: Was, ja was ist Liebe? Es ist nicht nur die Liebe zu einer Person. Es ist ebenso die Liebe zur Musik. Zur Flora und Fauna, und die Liebe zu Gott, die viele Menschen verbindet. Liebe Ist voller Höhen und Tiefen. Es ist ein Gefühl gleich einer Achterbahnfahrt. Einen Moment lang glaubt man, zu schweben, im Nächsten kommt der harte Aufprall und man ist ganz unten. Sie fragt sich: Wie, ja wie Ist Liebe?

Liebe kann unendlich schön sein, aber auch sehr wehtun. Liebe gibt einem Kraft oder raubt einem die Sinne. Sie ist sowohl grausam als auch wunderschön. In einem Moment scheint die Welt stillzustehen, im Nächsten ist alles, was du willst, dass dieser Schmerz endlich vorübergeht.

Liebe ist vergänglich. Sie ist vergleichbar mit der Schönheit einer Rose. Sie entfaltet ihre Blüte in strahlender Pracht und erweckt Trauer in dir, wenn sie verblüht. Liebe ist unheimlich vielseitig. Sie vereinigt Gegensätze und verbindet zwei Menschen durch ein inneres Band. Liebe erkennt man nicht auf den ersten Blick. Sie ist wie ein Bild, das viele Emotionen verbirgt. Wenn man auch auf den ersten Blick nichts erkennen kann, wird man von seiner Schönheit überwältigt werden, wenn man sich nur Zeit nimmt, um genauer hinzusehen.

Liebe ist wie ein gutes Buch, dessen Faszination man erst entdeckt, wenn man ein paar Seiten gelesen hat. Auch wenn man sich anfangs scheut, das Neue und Ungewisse in Angriff zu nehmen, wird es dich später mitreißen und du wirst die Welt um dich herum nicht mehr wahrnehmen.

Liebe liegt in jedem netten Wort, jeder freundlichen Geste, jedem Läheln und im Lachen, das von Herzen kommt. Sie fragt sich: Wo, ja wo finde ich die Liebe? Liebe liegt an jedem nur erdenklichen Ort. Man findet sie am Gipfel des höchsten Bergs, am Grund des tiefsten Ozeans, man findet sie in jedem Lied, das einem gefällt, jedem Buch, das dich in seinen Bann zieht, sie Ist der Wind, der dir sanft durch das Haar fährt und wenn du genau hinhörst, findest du sie sogar im Zwitschern der Vögel.

Sie fragt sich: Wann, ja wann finde ich die Liebe? Liebe ist überall, sie ist dort, wo man sie am wenigsten erwartet. Manchmal schleicht sie sich leise an, manchmal überfällt sie dich wie ein wildes Tier, sie begleitet dich dein Leben lang. Du musst sie nur zulassen und dein Herz für sie öffnen. Was, ja was ist Liebe? Das, das alles ist Liebe. Wer liebt, sieht die Welt mit anderen Augen. Wer liebt, für den hat das Leben einen Sinn.