In which I share my ultimate break up playlist

Listening to: rudietuesday’s ultimate break up playlist

Browsing my Twitter feed last night, I saw a tweet from the Huffington Post that linked to an article promising “the ultimate breakup playlist.” Turns out this ultimate list was actually the “Top 10 Songs To Get Through Divorce,” but I guess that is a pretty ultimate break up.

The list, for those of you who haven’t clicked on the article, consists of the likes of Alanis Morissette (of course), Gotye (ugh), and Cee Lo Green (because, obviously, the f-you song). For the Billboard pop at heart, this list might be great. For me, it sucks.

So I decided to create my own ultimate playlist for a break up. Punk rock style. I kept it to 10 songs for this post, to mirror the HuffPo article, and it only clocks in at about a half hour. A solid amount of time, but in case of emergency, a longer mix may be needed. It’s posted on Spotify, so listen and feel empowered that you’re a strong independent person with one more “ex” in your life. I encourage you to add to it, and please let me know if you do.


1. “Bourne on the FM Waves of the Heart” – Against Me!
You have to fight to stay in control of the situation.
Against Me! often makes me feel rowdy, but this song starts off slow and sweet, with just a bit of edge. It gets tougher and louder as the song goes on. It feels okay to be sad at the beginning, but then even more okay to be moving on.

2. “A Little Death” – Fucked Up
I don’t want love if it will hurt me again. I’m better off, it was too much, a little death from every touch.
Man, I love these guys. Their songs are no-nonsense about shoving their intensity in your face, but the message in their lyrics is strong in such a bittersweet way. Nothing tears me up inside while simultaneously making me feel like everything will be okay like a F’d Up song.

3. “Know What I Mean, Jellybean?” – Iron Chic
I’m out of tears, I’ll make no consessions/through all these years, I’ve learned a lesson.
Iron Chic’s lyrics make me want to cry sometimes, but their sound makes me want to flail around and start a mosh pit at a bus stop. (Seriously, I’ve felt that urge more than once.) This is a “life still sucks, but I’m getting over it” song.

4. “Dog” – Lemuria
At least I can say I tried with you.
I knew Lemuria had to be on here. So many of their songs would’ve worked on this mix. The longing is strong on this track, but the words know it’s over and the chords are hopeful.

5. “27 Days” – Cheap Girls
And it’s been 27 days without you and I still feel the same/except I’m not too tired to settle down.
About halfway through the mix is time to tone it down for a sec, right? Here’s your quieter moment to reminisce. But don’t think I’m going to let you get back to wallowing territory.

6. “Remedy” – Hot Water Music
I must live to know healing takes some time./So no regrets, and no looking back to sinking ships.
HWM is so not going to let you wallow. Remember the point of this mix. We are getting over things, not allowing ourselves to get back under them. So play your air guitar and let HWM help guide you on your way to the land of empowerment.

7. “Nothing Can Stop Me” – Heavens to Betsy
But if you think/that I’m not strong/you best watch out/nothing can stop me.
Speaking of empowerment, who’s more empowered than a riot grrrl? There was no way this mix was getting by without at least one song from this style of music and life. This song makes me uneasy, which is one of the reasons I love it. Sometimes you just need to scream a little bit (or a lot) to feel okay.

8. “Everybody That Loves You” – Bomb the Music Industry!
I hope that when I sit around watching snow collect in banks on the ground/that I don’t get too down because you’re not around.
Things are looking up. You’re feeling like an empowered riot grrrl and you realize that sometimes you’re alone, and sometimes you’re not. Everyone’s got problems (me, too!) and you are dealing with yours. People love you because you are awesome, even if you don’t always realize it.

9. “Aside” – The Weakerthans
I’m unconsoled, I’m lonely, I am so much better than I used to be.
Because we’re not anything even close to perfect, but we’re working on getting through this life as best as we can. We are moving on.

10. “FuckUTurn” – Kid Dynamite
So you can say what you want, say what you will, at least I can say I do what I feel is right for me, with no apologies for you.
I mean, there has to be one final f-u, right?

Note: I linked to live and alternate versions of the songs for as many tracks as possible in this list. It’s easy to find the usual versions, on Spotify and elsewhere, so why not try something a bit different? After all, we’re changing, and that’s what it’s all about.

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