UNSPLASH / SIMON NOH / https://unsplash.com/photos/0rmby-3OTeI

As much as we all fantasise about a ‘hot girl summer’, the reality kicks in when we realise that sunny weather and beaches can’t get rid of the blues. This sad girl season needs a soundtrack. Thankfully, we’ve curated the perfect set of songs to ward off your summertime sadness.

Sarah’s picks (Fashion Editor):

“Iris” - The Goo Goo Dolls

I know this used to be a Heart radio classic but hear me out. “Iris” encapsulates feeling things so intensely you feel as if you could die. 'I’d give up forever to touch you.’ Do you realise how profound that is? This song fuels the yearning and angst that fuses with love and provides an outlet for the aftermath of watching (500) Days of Summer for the 15th time. The 2004 live version in Buffalo is an instant cure for the #SADGIRLSUMMER syndrome as John Rzeznik belts in the rain. If you’re feeling extra sad, the Phoebe Bridgers featuring Maggie Rogers version on Soundcloud is bound to tug at your heart strings, replacing any anger with unadulterated misery.

Youtube / Goo Goo Dolls (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HZM0QiuUS8)

“Wild Horses” - The Sundays

The Sundays’ version of this classic The Rolling Stones tune feels like a warm summer night. Harriet Wheeler’s angelic vocals over the gentle strum of a guitar is the perfect background music for a stroll at sunset, thinking about everything that has ever happened to you. The Sundays’ Reading Writing and Arithmetic album has the same distinct sound and seems to have been lost in the whirlwind of the comeback of 90s music.

Youtube / Bebot express (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x7GE90n6XX8)

“I Know It’s Over” - The Smiths

“This song directly addresses our inflated egos”

I promise you I am not a female manipulator. I’m also not a manic pixie dream girl. The Smiths are just the go-to band for when you’re wallowing in self pity and melancholy. Starting slowly, this song progressively increases in pace and by the four minute mark Morrissey is belting. This masterpiece contains some of Morrissey’s finest vocals and the same self-loathing ‘I am so lonely’ plot as the rest of The Smiths’ discography. ‘If you’re so funny, why are you on your own tonight?’ This song directly addresses our inflated egos and forces us to confront our solitude. Ouch.

Youtube / The Smiths (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iey0VOhxV2Y)

Josh’s picks (Vulture Editor):

“I Know” - Fiona Apple

Raw emotion lies at the heart of Fiona Apple’s music. Her eclectic piano playing and hoarse voice provide the ideal canvas for the extremity of expression that comes through her lyricism. However, “I Know”, the closer to her excellent second album When the Pawn… lacks the immediate intensity and sardonic tone of tracks such as “Fast As You Can” or “Paper Bag”. In her lament on being the ‘other woman’ in a relationship, Apple sings from a place of reluctant, dejected acceptance. What better captures the element of #SADGIRLSUMMER than the isolation of unrequited commitment?

Youtube / fionaapple (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wB09p4MF7gw)

“I Remember” - Molly Drake

“When a heart breaks, it really don’t break even”

Over the years, Nick Drake’s music has garnered the attention and acclaim it deserves, especially for his melancholic lyrical style, which many believe is inspired by the Romantic poets. Yet the woman whose art moulded the creative heart of Nick Drake rarely receives the same recognition - his mother. After the rise of Nick Drake’s cult following, the recordings of Molly Drake’s similarly sorrowful music were released. “I Remember”, an undeniable highlight of her discography, sees Drake reflect on the delusional comfort of memory, where a former partner does not reminisce on moments precious to her in the same way. When a heart breaks, it really don’t break even.

Youtube / Folk ABC - Americana, Blues, Country (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZYo2ryZ3wUs&feature=emb_logo)

“Mythological Beauty” - Big Thief


Mountain View

Sad music and the ‘tragedy paradox’

Summer is a time when many of us are plunged back into the clasp of our parents’ households. Regardless of one’s relationship with their parents, it can take some long, hard reflection to realise just how difficult their role is. Adrienne Lenker’s nostalgia-inducing storytelling and mellow voice reach an unimaginable peak on “Mythological Beauty”, her love letter to her mother which meditates on the struggles and passions of being a young parent. So, the next time you storm off on a late-night summer drive after arguing with them, perhaps the soothing sound of Big Thief’s greatest song (a bold statement, I know) might be just what you need to bring you back down to earth.

Youtube / Saddle Creek (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejzzO51e4xI)

Now you have the tunes to curate the atmosphere for a night in with your tears and pessimism, there is no excuse for not participating in #SADGIRLSUMMER. Even if it’s only for a couple of minutes. Trust us, it’s the perfect alternative to hot girl summer.