A ‘We Are Never Getting Back Together’ Playlist

For all the members of the lonely-hearts club, this is a mixtape of 8 songs. With the past year in lockdown most relationships have gone either of two ways, or the ‘will they, won’t they phase.’ Regardless, these songs are here for you. But we do need a little hope that our lives will get better. Therefore, I’ve peppered this playlist with one Gloria Gaynor style anthem, because unfortunately there aren’t enough tissues for an evermore of solitude. 

Burn by Phillipa Soo

From Hamilton, based on the life of American founding father Alexander Hamilton, Burn is written by lyrical genius Lin-Manuel Miranda. In Burn, Eliza Schuyler (Hamilton’s wife) narrates her heartbroken response to Hamilton’s public account of his affair. Eliza transitions through stages of feminist fury, ultimately rewriting herself a better narrative by burning Hamilton’s letters. 

drivers license by Olivia Rodrigo 

In drivers license, we experience the mourning of her ended relationship and the conceit of driving makes that much more tragic. The mundane act, for her, becomes a constant reminder that she isn’t with the person she loves. Rodrigo’s lyric, “But I still fuckin’ love you,” despite its simplicity, reminds us how love doesn’t end because the relationship has. 

evermore by Taylor Swift feat. Bon Ivor 

Swift is the god of breakup anthems. Though evermore isn’t as catchy as We Are Never Getting Back Together or Bad Blood, Swift writes something that our hearts can wallow to. Through evermore, Swift plays on this idea of being trapped in the past; figuring out how everything out the error, it’s no use as there isn’t anything you can do to fix it.

“Fireworks” by First Aid Kit 

Written by the underrated Swedish folk duo First Aid Kit, Fireworks tells the story of chased, but unachieved dreams. Sisters Johanna and Klara Söderberg speak of a “finish line”; the relationships inevitable end, and all those hopes and dreams of being in love become shattered. 

i love you by Billie Eilish 

Eilish’s music often sounds like a lullaby, with i love you being a soft acoustic track that puts your heartbreak to sleep. Through her lyrics, Eilish explores a complicated relationship, one that I have yet to grasp myself. i love you reads as a regret of letting a relationship fail and the struggle of acceptance. After a breakup, acknowledging it’s over can be one of the biggest challenges. 

Landslide by Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac’s landslide, as with any of their music places you in nirvana. This song cleverly tells the story of how love could come crashing down at any moment, and as listeners we almost forget our own avalanching love lives. Breakups are often a conflict to the comforting lack of change we don’t have to experience, but Fleetwood Mac recognise that it’s inevitable. 

The End of the World by Sharon Van Etten

Originally by Skeeter Davis, Etten covers a decades old feel to the song that works to bring us back into the past and into our former relationships. The song bleeds out the melancholic aftermath of a breakup. One that is crippled with the knowledge that despite their pain, the world will in fact keep turning. The birds still sing, the sun still shines, the stars still glow, and we get an abundant sense that the world is working against us. 

Visions of Gideon by Sufjan Stevens

Visions of Gideon always reminds me of Elio crying at the end of Call Me By Your Name. At least when we’re wallowing we know Timothee Chalamet was too. Steven’s acoustic vocals comfort heartbreak alone. His repeated lyric “Is it a video?”, replays the memories of an ended relationship so much so it’s like watching a video; one that’s being played and replayed. For anyone that’s guilty of trying to live in the past Stevens has you covered with this track.

Honourable Mentions

– Summertime Sadness by Lana Del Rey

À peu près by Pomme

– The Man Who Can’t Be Moved by The Script

– Another Love by Tom Odell

– Give Me Love by Ed Sheeran

– Love is a Battlefield by Pat Benatar

– Total Eclipse of the Heart by Bonnie Tyler



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