Tunes Tuesday: Soundtrack to Cuffing Season

Hark, cuffing season is heavily upon us! To be completely transparent, I have to admit that up until about a year ago I assumed that cuffing season was some kind of slang term related to deer hunting. As most other millennials in the dating world could inform you, cuffing season refers to the time of year when the desire to lock down a steady romantic partner becomes increasingly pressing as the temperatures drop and the season’s many holidays approach (apparently this is a scientifically observable phenomenon lasting from October to March). To process this through my sorority girl lens, it’s like formal season but way more serious and with fewer photo ops/memories chewed away by cheap vodka.

My ignorance around cuffing season is likely due in tandem to my violent avoidance of the dating scene and my love of the years’ colder months. Regardless, I am totally down to wallow in some on-trend lonely vibes this fall and have curated some solid tunes to set the scene. What started out as a joke in my friend’s Instagram DMs has become a reality—and it turned out pretty sweet.

If you like Lil Peep as much as you like Bob Dylan, then I have the perfect playlist for you! Scroll forth and bop along with me to the long-awaited official release of “Songs That Make Me Want To Hit Up Dudes That Waste My Time.”

Onlysmokecigsontheweekend by Walkabout ft. Chris Ryan

My roommate showed me this bouncy track a few months ago and I’ve listened to it on such aggressive repeat that Walkabout was my most played artist on Spotify for the entire year of 2018. What can I say, I’m a sucker for a SoulCycle-ready drop and distorted vocals. I can find virtually no information on the artist and the song is honestly pretty generic when it comes to pop-EDM, but to quote the Great British Bake-Off, “It’s a jam. It’s a literal jam.”

Highlight lyric: “I like to go home and go to bed. I like to drink, yeah. And have sex, of course.”

For No One by The Beatles

Revolver is the best Beatles’ album of all time, and I will fight you on that. This song always manages to somehow both rip my heart out and make me feel like a bad-ass bitch. The slow build of the accompaniment on this song gives it a warmth and butteriness. That paired with the heart-wrenching lyrics that tell a tale of unrequited love makes this my go-to sad song for improvising harmonies in my car.

Highlight lyric: “And in her eyes you see nothing, no sign of love behind the tears.”

i hate u, i love u by gnash ft. Olivia O’Brien

Another go-to in my collection of sad post-relationship songs. Each verse on this track reads like a deeply personal yet universally relatable poetic journal entry. Its majorly relatable vibes have made it extremely popular with well over half a million plays on Spotify.

Highlight lyric: “I miss you in my front seat. Still got sand in my sweater from nights we don’t remember."

The Standard by KLOUDS

I have no idea where I found this track, but it’s been constantly in my rotation since I was in high school during the era when I was really into frat rap and just discovering EDM. This track approaches using a party track to critique partying as a coping mechanism way before “All My Friends” and “I Took a Pill In Ibiza” made it trendy. And again, I’m a sucker for a distorted vocal chorus.

Highlight lyric: “Told myself that I was too good to forget. It’s been two years and I’m still getting texts.”

Liability by Lorde

I love this song not only because I easily learned it on piano and now I can feel like a pop star in my apartment, but also because Lorde is an undeniably talented songwriter and vocalist. The song intimately grapples with the feeling of being a burden in a relationship while also gently promoting a gospel of self-love.

Highlight lyric: “The truth is I am a toy that people enjoy until all of the tricks don’t work anymore and then they are bored of me. I know it’s exciting running through the night, but every perfect summer is eating me alive.”

Figures by Jessie Reyez

Jessie Reyez’ could sing the Declaration of Independence and it would feel like a knife in the chest. Her vocals are raw, powerful, and make my soul hurt. In “Figures” she deals with wanting to seek out emotional revenge after having been hurt by a former partner who she is still regrettably in love with.

Highlight lyric: “How in the fuck would you feel if you couldn’t get me back? That’s what I wish that I could do to you.”

Forgetting All About You by Phoebe Ryan ft. Blackbear

This upbeat and playful track masks yet another critique of using party culture as an emotional crutch. While the song’s protagonist insist she’s having plenty of fun, it’s clear that in spite of her best efforts she is having an immensely difficult time moving on from her break-up, and forgetting all about her ex.

Highlight lyric: “I’m just tryna figure out my life. Take it day by day, one at a time. I’m losing it, so what? I’m fine. It’s probably, probably, probably alright.”

SLOW DANCING IN THE DARK by Joji

This track was released as a single off of Joji’s most recent project, BALLADS 1. “SLOW DANCING IN THE DARK” is no exception to Joji’s typical melancholy vibe as he deals with feeling inadequate to a point of losing hope that love exists when a former partner has moved on from him.

Highlight lyric: “Give me reasons we should be complete. You should be with him, I can’t compete.”

XO TOUR Llif3 by Lil Uzi Vert

The hook on this song is basically a sample of The Beatles’ “She Said She Said,” prove me wrong. I saw this song performed live before I really knew who Lil Uzi Vert was, and it’s a certified banger—very here for the emo rap trend.

Highlight lyric: “I don't really care if you cry. On the real, you should've never lied. Saw the way she looked me in my eyes. She said I am not afraid to die”

Drunk by Ed Sheeran

I am a white girl, so it’s mandatory for me to be obsessed with Ed Sheeran. And here we have yet another uptempo track featuring someone using partying to unsuccessfully cope with the ending of a relationship!

Highlight lyric: “Tell you the truth I hate, what didn’t kill me never made me stronger at all.”

Die Young (Deconstructed Mix) by Kesha

I’ve been the biggest Kesha fan for as long as I can remember, and her Deconstructed EP is absolutely phenomenal. “Die Young” is a bop regardless, but if I’m trying to get In My Feelings™, this is the mix to go for.

Highlight lyric: “What a shame that you came here with someone.”

No Interruption (Acoustic) by Hoodie Allen

An acoustic redux rap track? Say no more.

Highlight lyric: “Tell me what you really want from me. Point blank, no discussion.”

SummertimeSoul by KYLE

Listening to KYLE always brings a smile to my face, no pun intended. The entire SMYLE album is a great listen for laid-back summer-lovin’ vibes. “SummertimeSoul” is as sunny as the rest of the album, while approaching the fleeting nature of summer romance.

Highlight lyric: “All you’ll ever need' is a summertime fling. He’ll forget you in the winter.”

Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right by Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan is virtually undisputed as a lyrical genius and this classic is no exception.

Highlight lyric: “I ain't sayin' you treated me unkind. You could have done better, but I don't mind. You just kinda wasted my precious time.”

Bacon by Nick Jonas

Every single Nick Jonas song is sexy as fuck, even when he’s singing about eating bacon as a metaphor for being emotionally unavailable. Now That’s What I Call Relatable Millennial Content!

Highlight lyric: “One thing I love more than being with you and that's no ties, no drama in my life.”

Same Drugs by Chance the Rapper

In a Reddit AMA, Chance said that the drugs are a metaphor for “stuff,” and I felt that.

Highlight lyric: “You were always perfect, and I was only practice.”

Coming Over by Dillon Francis and Kygo ft. James Hersey

I’m a huge Dillon Francis fan-girl. This track is a lower-key sample of Dillon Francis’ discography as his typical style can be hyper-upbeat and somewhat aggressive. All the better to hit you in the feelings, and it still totally slaps.

Highlight lyric: “Is it alright if I come 'round? Is it too late if I come now? Would you stay up to figure this out?”

Let’s Get Lost by G-Eazy ft. Devon Baldwin

G-Eazy has made countless anthems for stealing your girlfriend, and this pre-Halsey track does not deviate from his player antics. Devon Baldwin’s vocals on the chorus sweeten the track when placed up against the grittier rap verses, providing a foil to G-Eazy’s fairly heartless bars.

Highlight lyric: “Act like tomorrow just doesn't exist. Time isn't real, ain't shit on my wrists. Let go of everything then you have bliss.”

Lowkey by DEV

Another track that prominently features a distorted vocal chorus? Say no more! I can totally get down with the lowkey vibe and overall message of this song. This downbeat song from Dev is fun, chill, and just a total bop.

Highlight lyric: “I need a girl who sip horchata, who ain't about the drama. A girl that gets down to bachata, down to fuck up a couple commas.”

Miss You by Louis Tomlinson

I absolutely live for all of the post-1D solo careers. The tracks that Louis Tomlinson has been involved in since the boy-band’s break-up are the most reminiscent of One Direction’s characteristic sound, so I love them all. This song (yet again) examine’s the use of partying as a way to get over a break-up through the lens of a party anthem, and it kinda kicks ass.

Highlight lyric: “We’re singing 'til last call, and it’s all out of tune. Should be laughing, but there’s something wrong. And it hits you when the lights go on: Shit, maybe I miss you.”

Last to Leave by Louis the Child ft. Caroline Ailin

I deeply relate to this song since I am incredibly skilled at ignoring the cues that I have overstayed my welcome at a party. Extending that metaphor into not acknowledging the signs that a relationship has run its course makes the track a perfect addition to this wistful playlist.

Highlight lyric: “I’m really good at starting but I don’t know when it has to end. You’re leaving in reality; I’m staying in pretend.”

U Said by Lil Peep

All of Lil Peep’s tracks come from a place of deep hurt. His lyrics are sincere and vulnerable while also maintaining tropes of the rap genre. Those lyrics combine with a more aggressive trap-esque beat to really drive the song forward. Also a huge fan of when songs have change-ups, and this is no exception.

Highlight lyric: “Sometimes life gets fucked up. That's why we get fucked up.”

Friends by Justin Bieber and BloodPop®

Can never go wrong with a solid J-Biebs/EDM hit. Or any J-Biebs hit, really.

Highlight lyric: “Doesn't have to end, and if it ends, can we be friends?”

when the party’s over by Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish has been kicking ass all 2018 as she’s released a handful of haunting singles following up from her debut 2017 EP Don’t Smile At Me. Her vocals on this track are nothing short of stunning and her heartfelt, story-telling approach to songwriting make “when the party’s over” all the more gorgeous.

Highlight lyric: “I'll only hurt you if you let me. Call me friend but keep me closer, and I'll call you when the party's over.”

All Like Whatever by Watsky

This simultaneously spiteful and optimist track was one of the first single releases for Watsky’s newest album, No Complaints. The quirky sound and comedic undertones are very emblematic of Watsky’s previous releases, making it a solid representation of his work and an equally solid addition to this sappy playlist.

Highlight lyric: “Yeah, maybe I think about you sometimes. Yeah, maybe I think you're pretty alright. Yeah, maybe it'd be decent if we linked up.”

Best Friend by Rex Orange County

The warm, beachy nostalgia on this track counterbalances the song’s pensive and heavy hearted lyrics as the singer attempts to untangle how he feels about falling into unreciprocated love with a friend. He navigates his paradoxical desire to both always have the upper-hand in a relationship as well as to sincerely trust and love someone. But more importantly, the major summer vibes on this track can totally warm up a dreary winter playlist like this one.

Highlight lyric: “I can't wait to be your number one. I'll be your biggest fan and you'll be mine, but I still wanna break your heart and make you cry.”

Lies by Marina

Marina and the Diamond’s entire sophomore album is the perfect soundtrack for both wallowing in a failed relationship and embracing your own bad-assery. The depth of sound on this track is thanks to Diplo’s opulent and bright production style that sits comfortably underneath Marina’s bold vocals.

Highlight lyric: “I don't wanna admit, but we're not gonna fit. No, I'm not the type that you like, why don't we just pretend?”

If you made it through to the end of my playlist notes, feel free to pour one out for the dude who ghosted me after I proofread a draft of his novel.