Melancholy, Bruised-Heart Songs for Nighttime Freeway Driving

Melancholy, Bruised-Heart Songs for Nighttime Freeway Driving

Very Specific Playlists is a weekly feature in which Jezebel staffers make very specific Spotify playlists based on their weird proclivities.

These are songs for stewing. The soundtrack to replaying moments both savage and tender in your head while you glance at your smudged eyeliner in the mirror. Maybe you are on your way back from a party where you felt alienated and alone. Or from some date that you didn’t feel like going on, only to be let down by their seeming indifference; a lack of overall curiosity from the person across from you. Can’t they see you? Don’t you deserve more? Did you peak at 23? INDULGE. WALLOW. ROLL DOWN THE WINDOW, LET THE RISING HEAT OF THE ASPHALT DRY YOUR TEARS! YOUR PAIN IS PURIFYING! THINK OF HOW FUCKING CINEMATIC YOU LOOK RIGHT NOW, QUEEN!

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1. Tricky, “Poems”

Have you ever snorted Vicodin? That’s what trip-hop is like! The long-abandoned genre of the ’90s is simply the best for slow-like-honey sadness. Tricky was the grandaddy of it all. Whenever I want to feel like I’m starring in a glamorous, downer-fueled drug sequence filmed by David Fincher I put on this jam.

2. Blood Orange, “You’re Not Good Enough”

I picture Blood Orange to be an sentient citrus fruit sliced in the middled, candied and neon, glistening with tears.

3. Patti Smith, “Piss Factory”

Bluesy, punk-rock spoken word about labor and men and PROFOUND yearning via heroin chic poet who railed Robert Mapplethorpe and Sam Shepard and snagged a National Book Award? TURN IT UP. Favorite line: “These bitches are just too lame to understand, too damn grateful to have a job.”

4. The Rolling Stones, “Wild Horses”

One time, when I was sure a break-up had made me weaker, that I would never be whole again, I laid on the floor who three straight hours and listened to this song over and over. Then my back hurt and I got Wendy’s and felt better. IT HAPPENED TO ME.

5. Tori Amos featuring Trent Reznor, “Past the Mission”

Um, look. I don’t know what you were doing in the ’90s. But I was LIVING for these two dark deities grinding their pianos with songs about SOLITUDE and PAIN. This is actually a very melodic pairing made all the more tender by the rumors that Tori LOVED Trent but he was infatuated with Courtney Love and so her affection was unrequited. The FEELZ!

6. Au Revoir Simone, “Stay Golden”

Here is the part of the night where you cry. Let these strange French models who are sort of like personification of an Anthropolgie lamp—beautiful, precious, unapologetically feminine—be your doulas of sadness. They use an instrument in this song that makes sounds like fluttering flute but its really the sound of a hummingbird sobbing.

7. Hole, “Violet”

Time to get angry! Fuck all his friends!! Fuck up his car! DO IT! GO THROUGH HIS EMAILS!!!!!!!! You get ALL THE CAKE!!!!!!!

8. Mazzy Star, “Fade Into You”

Whether you are initiating into a wiccan girl gang or driving by a playground at night peering wistfully at the cold steel of an empty slide, it’s Mazzy you hear. it’s all Mazzy. Go ahead, light that clove.

9. Blur, “To the End”

You’re in the Luxembourg Garden. You’re in a gown. There are men in suits playing a card game. You look at the flowers. The walls. The mirrors. You see yourself. You feel pity. Your lover enters. His eyes are the color of smoke. You slap him. You sigh. What a lovely party.

10. Fiona Apple, “Slow Like Honey”

This album is a goddamn masterpiece and Fifi was 19 when she recorded it. When she got the MTV music video award in 1998 she tried to quote Maya Angelou then said, “This world is bullshit.” Teen hearts bleed the best.

Image via Tara Jacoby.

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