Morgan Ellis is a staff photographer for Xpress. She moved to San Francisco last year to pursue her Photojournalism degree with a minor in Museum Studies....
Playlist: Xpressions of Love!
February 14, 2022
Who has not fantasized about having a song written about them? Being gushed over through sweet melodies? This collection of 14 songs emulates the many sounds, words and emotions that love can inspire. Bask in the feelings with your companions and yourself today for a little extra love!
“Baby I’m Yours” – Arctic Monkeys (2006)
Arctic Monkeys served as a staple gateway into indie music in the early 2000s. Lead singer Alex Turner’s distinct voice covering Barbara Lewis’s 1965 release remains true to their sound, but simultaneously integrates harmonies from the original version that make it feel dreamy and soft from the first note. The grandiose metaphors woven into the lyrics are enough to make anyone’s heart swell.
“Be Sweet” – Japanese Breakfast (2021)
This single from Michelle Zauner, aka Japanese Breakfast’s most recent album release “Jubilee” is an upbeat, extremely dance-worthy exploration of forgiveness. This track boasts resilience and hope in both its lyrics and its ‘80s inspired sound.
“I’ll Come Running” – Brian Eno (1975)
People who claim their love language is “acts of service” — this is for you. The whole second half of this song repeats the lyric, “I’ll come running to tie your shoe.” There is something trance-like about the ambience of this song and it reminds me of the lengths one will go to even to fulfill the simplest of favors to make a loved one happy.
“Our Sweet Love” – The Beach Boys (1970)
The signature fantastical sound of the Beach Boys in this song feels straight out of a daydream sequence in a movie. Talk of forever and orchestral instrumentals strips the listener of all concepts of time and troubles. Take this one with you on your picnic in a meadow.
“This Strange Effect” – The Shacks (2016)
With airy and ethereal vocals, The Shacks hand you some rose-tinted glasses and sing about the sometimes inexplicable nature of love and affection. It can feel unfamiliar and difficult to put into words, but in a positively intoxicating way.
“Ecstatic Baby” – Yeasayer (2019)
The message of this song is simple and straightforward. It is light-hearted, upbeat and it perfectly emulates the excitement of loving someone. Get all your loved ones together and have a dance party.
“Day Dreaming” – Aretha Franklin (1972)
Speaking as an avid daydreamer, this is the perfect soundtrack to zone out to while thinking about someone you love. I listened to this song often during the shelter-in-place mandate in 2020 when good things were even more of a scarcity.
“Jamie – DGC Rarities Version” – Weezer (1994)
This song may or may not be about Jamie Young, Weezer’s lawyer at the time of this song’s release, but hey, lawyers work hard and need love, too. Regardless, the sentiments in this song are universal. Rivers Cuomo sings about the feeling of longing and how painful it can be when that special person is no longer by your side.
“Dragonball Durag” – Thundercat (2020)
Thundercat’s bass guitar skills are the highlight of this song. The lyrics are riddled with personality, making it feel genuine and easy to listen to and hearing it performed live gave it an even more special place in my heart. Go squeeze someone you love tight.
“Crushcrushcrush” – Coco & Clair Clair, Paul Maxwell (2017)
Somewhat like bubblegum pop, kind of like hip hop, but not quite falling under the textbook definition of any genre in particular, “Crushcrushcrush” feels like it is meant to be listened to with your best friends. The lyrics feel intimate, like an expression of the natural inner conflicts of liking someone.
“In Love Again” – Mannequin Pussy (2019)
The heavy instrumentals and intense vocals, courtesy of lead singer and guitarist Marisa Dabice, stand out in this song. They pair well with the lyrics that express the thrill and vulnerability of new love.
“I Wanna Be Your Lover” – Prince (1979)
How can you not immediately start dancing when this song comes on? This early ‘80s R&B hit not only has the lyrics to make you feel loved, but it has an equally feel-good sound to match. Prince has more than a few iconic love songs, but this is one of my favorites.
“Everyone’s In Love With You” – David Byrne (2001)
Play this one when you want a little ego boost. Feel like the center of the universe as David Byrne sings about everyone you encounter becoming immediately infatuated.
“Kiss Me” – Sixpence None The Richer (1997)
A quintessential part of ‘90s rom coms, this song has the most subtle of twangs that feels sweet and charming. It makes me nostalgic for movies like “She’s All That,” “10 Things I Hate About You” and “Cruel Intentions” (all 1999 romantic classics) that stand out in my memory for not only their sometimes poorly aged cheesiness, but also their stellar soundtracks.
Link to Playlist: