Songs to see you through: Instrumentals, Old Favourites and New Ventures.


I realised when I started collecting songs for this that I listen to the same artists over and over. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it means a bit of repetition. Nonetheless, I'll continue. These songs have carried me through the semester with its up and downs. God, you never cease to revel in the wonder of music. Hopefully you will revel in some old favourites and dive into new ventures!

1. Alt-J (∆) - Dissolve Me

This song was only recently introduced to me by my friend Brendan. I fell in love with it immediately. There’s something really upbeat yet melancholy about it. The opening seconds of the song really set the mood. There are so many lyrics that I can relate to, yet it’s a different Alt J than I am used to. I’m a big fan of this UK band. My dance moves to this song are absolutely hilarious, I rave away to it, and I tend to use my hands to mimic the instrumentals. I guess it’s a love song in a sense, but it’s just a mixture of emotions. The closing parts of the song are particularly lovely “She makes the sound the sea makes, knee-deep in the North Sea”. I’m delighted I discovered this song.

Now dissolve me, two tabs on your tongue
A herd of shepherds to herd the sheep, sleep now my only one
Broken sweethearts who sleep apart
Both still pine for the other's side spine, spoon as sleep starts
And pulse to pulse, now shush
She makes the sound, the sound the sea makes to calm me

2. Ben Howard – These Waters

Will you allow me blog about Ben Howard forever? I avoided listening to him for months. But I decided to go hunting for new tunes, because you always find new gems with this artist. You can recognize Ben's voice, guitar and his percussion guitar. This song is incredibly soothing, but it hits a nerve also. I think a song should resonate with you in some way. It's incredibly emotional from 3:08 onwards, the instrumental breaks my heart and I think I could listen to him forever. I suppose this is about losing yourself, thinking about change in your life. The ending notes are particularly poignant. 
The lyrics "A chance to breathe again, a chance for a fresh start" are lovely. Ben's songs really lift me when I'm down. The combination of percussion guitar and violin are just breathtaking. I see you in these songs too though. I will never allow anyone insult Ben Howard as he means too much to me.

3:08 onwards guys, don't forget! 

Down these roads that wander as lost as the heart,
Is a chance to breathe again, a chance for a fresh start.
Oh, no, see these waters they'll pull you up,
Oh, no, if you're bolder than the darkness.
My my let these songs be an instrument to cut here darling,
Oh, spaces between the happiness and the hardness,
Oh my my, spaces between the happiness and the hardness

3. Brandon Flowers – Dreams Come True

Brandon Flowers happens to be the lead singer of the band "The Killers". This song makes me laugh because when my sister Úna first showed it to me, I hated it. I really didn't like it, I wasn't in the mood for something like it. Now it wakes me up in the mornings and carries me through days when I'm moody or even just strolling to and from college. It's got the cheesiest song title which is what put me off at first. It's almost reassuring to me when I listen to it. It's also got really groovy drums and makes me imitate them with my fist. You can dance surprisingly well to it. The best part in the end when the combination of really loud drums and the singers sing together "Woah" I am not going write out how it sounds but that would be weird. I promise you, it'll cheer you up!

Spend your life, bracing for the crash land
You forget, baby it's a dreamland
Take a chance, underneath the streetlight
Touch my heart, everything is alright
In the blackness of the night
Everything is alright

4. Ben Howard – I Will Be Blessed

I told you, more Ben Howard. The opening guitar soothes my soul and makes me think of a gently flowing river. It makes me think of those I treasure, those I still love and it's just gorgeous. I came across it on one of my Ben Howard song hunting expeditions. Yes. The backing singer, who is probably one of Ben's friends India Bourne, who has a lovely voice. She is also from Devon, Ben Howard's home place. His voice is so sweet in this song and the song is so simple yet I would take it over a Justin Bieber song any day. It's the kinda song that would make you fall in love to or reminiscence to. It's quiet but then it starts picking up towards the end (3:24 onwards) and you hear sounds that would make you instantly think "Ben Howard". He starts singing "If you're there when the world comes together, oh if you're there I will be blessed". I don't think I'm doing it justice the way I'm talking about it. You'll just have to listen.

Oh my ghost came by
Said who do you love the most
Who you wanna call before you die
Oh my ghost came by here
Said who do you love the most
Who you gonna sing to 'fore you're gone
Oh hey heaven is the place we know
Heaven is the arms that hold us
Long before we go
Oh hey, heaven is the place we know
Heaven is the arms that hold us
Long before we go

5. Foals – Mountain at my Gates

This song is just fantastic. The drums are foot tappingly good. It makes me think of an uphill battle and it reminds me of my own life. It makes me both determined and thoughtful. It's also an incredibly funky tune. I don't know if Foals fit into the "funk" genre, but it's such a catchy tune. You'll me shout singing this to myself. It's an almost defiant song, with the singer accepting that they something to overcome but they will do anything they can to rebel against it. It becomes a cacophony of sound towards the end that is synoymous with Foals. I'd love to hear this live at a festival. It means a lot to me however.

I see a mountain at my gates
I see it more and more each day
What I give, it takes away
Whether I go or when I stay
I see a mountain at my gates
I see it more and more each day
I see a fire out by the lake
I'll drive my car without the brakes
I see a mountain in my way
It's looming larger by the day
I see a darkness in my fate
I'll drive my car without the brakes
Oh, gimme some time
Show me the foothold from which I can climb
Yeah, when I feel low
You show me a signpost for where I should go

6. Selena Gomez - Good For You

Yes a surprising entry to the list but it's true, I really like this song. There's something about the beat in it that makes me want to sway to it. It's actually quite a sensual song. The only part I don't like in the song is the rap bit.  It's a different kind of song from Selena but it surprisingly makes me feel good about myself. Ah well. The drums accompanied by Selena's breathy voice, sounds so smooth. I actually listen to it on my way into college sometimes, which is funny. It kind of tells you to love yourself.

Gonna wear that dress you like, skin-tight
Do my hair up real, real nice
And syncopate my skin to your heart beating
Cause I just wanna look good for you, good for you
I just wanna look good for you, good for you

7. Biffy Clyro - Mountains

Oh Biffy Biffy Biffy. The lead singer's accent is just gorgeous. It's a defiant yet poignant song also. I think it's really catchy. I love the swell in the guitar at the chorus where the singer sings "I am a mountain, I am the sea. You can't take that away from me". I love that I can hear the piano beneath the guitar and the drums. I'll forever love the instrumental from 2:25 onwards. God it's amazing. What I wouldn't give to hear that live. It makes me think of people I used to know. It's really emotional towards the end when "Nothing lasts forever except you and me, you are my mountain, you are my sea. Love can last forever between you and me, you are my mountain, you are my sea"

I am the mountain
I am the sea
You can't take that away from me
I am the mountain
I am the sea
You can't take that away from me
'Cause you tear us apart with all the things you don't like
You can't understand that I won't leave
'Til we're finished here and then you'll find out
Where it all went wrong

8. Wild Cub - Colour

This is such an upbeat song. While I was listening to this I was tapping my foot on the bus. I'm not totally sure what the song is taking about but my God that guitar is great. Definitely a song for travelling and what a cool name for the band. It makes me feel young with lots of opportunities.

I hate the way we’re speaking to each other
We kill it in each other til’ the money don’t stop
There’s nothing hidden from each other
We had that love, we wanted more
One hand reflected in the other
We tore it up, we wanted more

9.  Ben Howard - Keep Your Head Up

This song I credit to keeping me going, sometimes even just helping me actually get up out of my bed and face the world. It means a lot to me. Of course it's Ben Howard. The lyrics are perfect. It's such an uplifting song discussing someone coming back to life after a hard time. Urging to keep your head up and to stop calling yourself second best. The best part is near the end where the music gets  louder and the singer's join together chanting the lyrics. 

I spent my time watchin' the spaces that have grown between us.
And I cut my mind on second best or the scars that come with the greeness.
And I gave my eyes to the boredom, still the seabed wouldn't let me in,

And I tried my best to embrace the darkness in which I swim.

10. I Like Not Knowing.

This is such an emotional song. These guys are from Scotland and I only discovered it recently enough. It really speaks to me. My heart breaks when the singers practically screams “Notice me, I want you to notice me”, it’s a little bit synonymous with how I feel sometimes with a number of people. What also makes me quite sad are these lyrics: "Because I don't know where we are going
Could hazard a guess, but I like not knowing". It's a nice gem of a song which I only discovered in my Discover Weekly playlist on Spotify. I suppose it's a plea, it's a song full of yearning. I suppose it talks about the future soon, and trying not to go crazy wondering what your future will be like.

I know you're under the water
I can hear you breathing
Notice me, I want you to
Notice me now I know I'm feeling this
Oh yes I'm feeling this

I hope you discovered something new and beautiful!

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