Sahan’s Valentines Day Albummers
This quintet of cathartic records is perfect for anyone opposed to Valentine's Day on emotional grounds – or Valentine's Day-lovers with a weird sense of humor.
For some, Valentine’s Day is nothing but candy, love and flowers. For others, not so much. For all you singles out there who would rather enjoy this day in solitude, here’s your soundtrack – a list of “Valentines Day Albummers” perfect for your evening alone. This quintet of albums is designed to be extra cathartic, so you can get all your emotions out at once and recharge for February 15 – the wonderful day after.
The title really says it all with this one. After the tragic breakup of the Smiths in 1987, Morrissey returned the following year with his debut solo album, a collection of songs that firmly solidified his “master of mope” status. Tracks like “Every Day is Like Sunday” and “Suedehead” are now classics in his repertoire, while the remainder of the album is filled with some of the singers strongest material to date.
Recommended if you like: The Smiths, New Order, The Stone Roses
My Bloody Valentine: Loveless
While no one (band members included) can really confirm any of the album’s actual lyrics, Loveless is much more about sound and mood than lyrical content. The album’s massive wall of guitars, androgynous vocal layers and indistinguishable synthesizers have a numbing quality to them, in the most comforting way possible. Play this one in headphones as loud as you can to get the full effect.
Recommended if you like: Slowdive, Sonic Youth, Ride
The Cure: Disintegration
About 20 seconds into the album’s opener “Plainsong”, the listener realizes that this is going to be a heavy, heavy record, but in the Marty McFly sense of the word rather than the Black Sabbath sense. Robert Smith and co set out to make an intentionally miserable record with Disintegration, and they most certainly achieved it, with radio hits like “Lovesong” and “Pictures of You”, as well as the deeper cuts like “The Same Deep Water as You” and the albums title track. When you’re done with Loveless, keep the volume knob where it is and move on to this record.
Recommended if you like: Echo & the Bunnymen, Joy Division, Siouxie & the Banshees
Beck: Sea Change
After the dissolution of a long term relationship, Beck recorded Sea Change. The album marked a shift in both sonic and lyrical content for the artist, opting for more elegant, spacious arrangements and simple lyrics. The result is a gorgeous document of heartbreak and loneliness. Tracks like “Guess I’m Doing Fine” and “The Golden Age” drift away on a sea of echo. Turn the lights down low and feel free to shed a tear or two.
Recommended if you like: The Flaming Lips, Grandaddy, Nick Drake
Cat Power: Moon Pix
Truthfully, Chan Marshall’s 1998 classic “Moon Pix” may be the saddest album I’ve ever heard. Everything about this album is wounded and fragile, from the delicate guitar strums and sparse instrumental accompaniment, to Marshall’s near whispered yet intense vocal delivery. If you’ve made it this far, you just might be laying face down on the floor, waiting for Valentine’s Day to be over, and that’s perfectly fine. This record has the tendency to do that.
Recommended if you like: Bonnie Prince Billy, PJ Harvey, Scout Niblett