Lately, I've been pretty stressed. I've been dreading coming to work, even though I actually enjoy my job, and genuinely like my coworkers.
Here's a playlist I've been putting on in my office when I want to take a breather and relax. It's helped me focus and get my work done, so hopefully it will do that for you! Happy focusing.
1. "Playground Love"—Air
From the start of the four drum sticks clicking together, that goes into the same piano keys being played, I automatically feel as if I'm in a dream world. The lead singer's vocals are so smooth and the music pairs with his voice so well, which makes my whole body feel relaxed! I first discovered this song after watching The Virgin Suicides, a 2000 film adapted by Sofia Coppola from the novel. The movie is set in the 1970s, and the soundtrack, especially "Playground Love" is quite fitting for what I believe that time period was like, specifically in the movie. It's one of my favorite songs when I want to relax and destress and it really helps keep my mind from racing.
2. "It's Hard to Get Around the Wind"—Alex Turner
This song is simple but extraordinary. It's on the soundtrack of a movie called Submarine, a 2010 coming-of-age film about a young boy who wants to lose his virginity before his 16th birthday, as well as his depressed father and unsatisfied mother. The music made for the film—all composed by Alex Turner, lead singer of the Arctic Monkeys—serves as relaxing background music when you need to take a break from the hustle and bustle in life.
3. "California"—Mazzy Star
You may know Mazzy Star's most popular single, "Fade Into You," which is also a daydreamy song that could also easily fit onto this playlist. This other song of hers, "California," is a song that has such pretty guitar strums filling the back-beat and exudes a sense of poignancy and nostalgia. I feel like it's a song to listen to when you're imagining all of the good things that are in California; whether you live here or you want to live here.
4. "Fiction"—The xx
I think the first time I heard this song, I was in senior year of high school. Their voices are beautiful together, and many of their songs from the particular album that "Fiction" is on are very peaceful. It's rare to find a man and woman's voice that sounds so in sync together, but The xx has it down perfectly.
5. "Marigold"—Nirvana (Demo track)
As far as Nirvana's albums go, In Utero is definitely their best work, although Nevermind gets all the credit. This song, even though it's really short, has these really peaceful emotions that aren't normally conveyed through Nirvana songs, since Dave is singing lead on this one.
6. "Married Life"—Michael Giacchino, 'Up' Soundtrack
This song is so cute and fun, while also easing your mind, and can help you think about the nice things in life. Even if you haven't seen the movie (I've only seen it in Spanish so I couldn't really understand what they were saying, LOL) the song is one that you can play and instantly feel better.
7. "Under Control"—The Internet
The Internet is made up of five singers and has a chill, R&B, jazz-funk kind of vibe to a lot of their songs. This song in particular has a really relaxing sound to it, while having lyrics that are super relatable. Their discography is really impressive, and this is one of my favorite songs I know from them, and not just because it fits well on this playlist.
8. "Wanders of the Mind"—The Internet & Mac Miller
This song, along with the prior track, is one of the best songs The Internet has released, and that Mac has featured on. The intro, while long, almost feels like a fantasy, and then once Mac starts sining with The Internet in the background, it all comes together in such an amazing way. I can close my eyes and imagine myself on the beach swimming out as far as I can with no cares in the world. It's a good song to relax to and also a good song to get stoned to (maybe I should make another playlist of songs for that).
9. "Find Your Wings"—Tyler, the Creator, Roy Ayers, Syd, & Kali Uchis
This song is two minutes and 59 seconds of chill vibes. Like, if positive vibes could be heard, it would sound like this. The instruments paired with Tyler's low, smooth voice and Kali's angelic vibrato is something so sweet... I feel like I'm in a cloud listening to it.