Audiophiles: Best breakup songs
It’s Valentine’s Day, or as I like to call it, the most commercially romantic day of the year. Yes, it’s flaunted as a day of immense love, but not all of us are in romantic relationships, and that’s OK! Perhaps you’re going through a breakup and you’ve been dreading tomorrow for as long as you’ve been single. In that case, you’re in luck (musically, not romantically) because I’ve compiled a list of iconic breakup songs to get you through the day.
“Let Me Know” — LANY
Often when people go through heartbreak, they’re told to keep their heads up; after all, you’ll definitely feel better as time passes. But sometimes you just need to wallow in it, which is totally fine. In this sad song, LANY’s lead singer Paul Klein sings about a failed relationship that he’s clearly not over. Breakups are hard, and it can be a struggle to cope with losing such a meaningful connection. Nothing makes for better wallowing than hearing Klein repeatedly croon “I still love you” over the mellow beat. And on that note, I’m going to go cry myself to sleep.
“Thinkin Bout You” — Frank Ocean
This song is almost a given in the genre. This low-key tune catches the enigmatic Frank Ocean singing about the loss of his first love. People often say that your first breakup is the hardest, and the quiet melancholy in this song definitely reinforces that idea. In his charismatic falsetto, Ocean asks his lover “do you not think so far ahead/’cause I been thinkin’ ‘bout forever.” It’s both a sorrowful and brilliant work of art.
“What About Me” — Lil Wayne feat. Sosamann
There was a time when Lil Wayne definitely did not strike me as the type to pen an emotional breakup song, but here we are; life comes at you fast. In this track, Lil Wayne laments the fact that he put so much work into a relationship with a woman who was clearly less involved than him. In the end, she quickly moves onto another man while Lil Wayne is left to pine after his now unrequited love. It’s so sad it feels like it should be a Drake song.
“Potential Breakup Song” — Aly & AJ
When this song came out, most of Wash. U.’s undergraduate population hadn’t even reached double digits yet, but that didn’t stop us from belting it before we even knew what love was. There are many ways to try to get over a breakup, and blasting “Potential Breakup Song” while you reflect on how terrible your ex is definitely works. I believe this song is, as the kids would say, an oldie but a goodie.
“I Don’t F— With You” — Big Sean
Once you get past your initial feelings of grief after a breakup, you transition to volatile indignation. Maybe you realize that your ex was absolutely terrible and you deserve so much better. Well, Big Sean is in the same boat as you. On top of a sick beat, Big Sean makes it very clear that his ex is no longer important in his life. You find it relatable, and let’s be real: The song slaps.
“Super Far” — LANY
This breakup song holds a special place in my heart. On top of a pulsing beat, it tells the story of someone coming to terms with the fact that a past lover wasn’t actually good for them. This upbeat song is definitely the type that you could listen to over and over again, but it also contains a stronger message. Sometimes your love for someone blinds you to their flaws, but at the end of the day you have to realize that you deserve better. A standout lyric is “I’m broken down I’ve had enough, if this is love, I don’t want it.” That’s the kind of character development we need in 2019.
“thank u, next” — Ariana Grande
It’s pretty well-known that Ariana Grande has had a slew of romantic partners, some of which are name dropped in this track. In this inspirational breakup song, she delivers a message that’s deeply important in both romantic and platonic relationships. Those closest to you may hurt you, and relationships may end when you least expect them to. But every relationship leaves you with a new life lesson, and these lessons help to fuel your personal growth. It can be hard dealing with a breakup, but you can also use your newfound independence to focus on self-growth.
“New Rules” — Dua Lipa
This can be a hard fact to face, especially when you love someone, but sometimes the person you care about actually isn’t good for you. Oftentimes women make up excuses to accommodate for the immature and flaky behaviors of men. It’s not exactly fun, but it does happen. In this hot track, Dua Lipa stops herself from going back to her problematic ex. She enumerates the specific things she needs to do to stay away from him, and it’s done incredibly well. Let’s be honest, Lipa has girls all around the world following her new rules, and rightfully so.