Jagger – “Melancholic”
-If there was a holy book for music genres, “Melancholic” would be in the definition of dream pop. This song has beautiful atmospheric elements in the opening with a lead vocal that absolutely soars. One might expect a song about sadness to be inherently sullen and dull, but this song confronts the feeling with an open sense of lightness. The lyrics basically convey that everything is okay, she’s just dealing with a bout of melancholy. It’s the sonic embodiment of the phrase, “it’s okay to be not okay.” It’s okay to sit with your feelings and process for a bit. You’ll be okay. But you should communicate this with others (as Jagger does here) so that others can sit with you, understand you, and help if necessary. This is a gorgeous song with an important message.
Mandy Mapes – “Surely goodness”
-The lyrics on this track are really wonderful and the melody makes me smile. The whole composition feels really comfortable and sweet, even though it’s really a tragedy about the awfulness of modern society. The optimism of the message about goodness following us around feels like a philosophical treatise as much as a dreamy pop song. Mapes has a sweetness in her vocal that encourages listeners to feel a genuine connection; the softness to the chord changes and melody make the whole experience feel gentle and engaging. “Even in the loneliness, love reaches out.” It’s so wholesome and positive. I love it.
The Astronomers – “Ruin my day”
-If you’re looking for an upbeat song that’s about finding joy despite not having the best day, this track is perfect. The layered vocal and strings work really well here. The up tempo style is enough to get you dancing. The strummed strings (ukelele?) along with the hand claps make for genuine feel good vibes. Not every day can be a good day, so this song helps us remember that mindset is important as we press on through life’s struggles.
Image courtesy: Jagger IG