Photo: Aliyev Alexei Sergeevich (Getty Images)
Christmas is behind us and so is the New Year’s Eve, so what’s the point of winter anymore? Unfortunately for us, we still have a month or two of this unnecessary coldness, so we might as well try to enjoy it. Grab your loved one along with the warmest blanket you have, tuck yourselves in and with a glass of good wine enjoy this beautifully calming wintry mix we’ve made especially for you. These songs either focus on this unwelcoming season or set an atmosphere that can only be enjoyed at this time of the year (and no, there won’t be any Christmas songs!) Let us know what you think.
Moby – Everloving
We begin our wintry mix with Moby who is well-known for his hauntingly emotional melodies that can set the mood in a manner of minutes. Although all of his songs from the masterful 1999 album Play are great, we’ve chosen Everloving as the first mainly because it was brilliantly combined on YouTube with a video of a train travelling from Oslo to Bergen. There are no lyrics in this song, just some humming possibly performed by Moby himself. This song will offer you that snowy winter sensation you need.
Vashti Bunyan – Train Song
That first song placed you inside a train, surrounded by the delightful snowy landscape; this one will tell you what you’re doing in that train. Vashti’s classic song from the ’60s about travelling to meet your lover is as beautiful now as it was about a half a century ago. It’s interesting to note that Bunyan’s song belong to what is dubbed as “freak folk.” This is a subgenre of psychedelic rock and includes acoustic guitars, melancholic lyrics and a hippie atmosphere. It’s great when you need to find some inner peace.
Joshua Radin – Winter
We continue in this soft-spoken folk manner with Joshua Radin and his song Winter. In case you were a big fan of the TV show Scrubs back in the days (though later it dropped in quality), you probably recognize this song as the one accompanying Dr. Cox’s breakdown and inability to reconcile with his best friend’s death. It is one of the best serious moments in an otherwise extremely funny and silly little show and this song really adds weight to it. What about that train you were on? Well, obviously it’s there to amplify that nostalgia you feel during this holiday season.
Simon & Garfunkel – A Hazy Shade of Winter
OK, it’s time to slowly introduce a faster beat to your wintry mix. You’re on that train, trying to find something to do, when you spot a mini-bar near your feet and, imagine your surprise, it’s full. You unscrew the first bottle you find and see Simon & Garfunkel appear by your side. Both of them are singing to your ear as you finish your first glass. A Hazy Shade of Winter is a perfect song to awake you from that folk half-sleep you’re in.
Nick Cave – Fifteen Feet of Pure Snow
You’re in a bit better mood now, so you try to find something to do in this desolate, spooky-looking train. Just a few feet away, on one of those seats, you spot a book – a mystery by the eternally Gothic Nick Cave. Fifteen Feet of Pure Snow is yet another one of Cave’s poetical stories told with a somber voice and infinitely cool rhythm. His songs tend to be both symbolic and literal, which gives you a lot of room for interpretation. As you turn the volume up, you slowly start to dance to this somewhat bizarre little story and you’re absolutely loving it.
U2 – New Year’s Day
Once you’re done with the book, you start to think about your loved one that you’re travelling to meet. Where did you meet her? Well, you were introduced by a friend at a party on New Year’s Eve. Immediately, U2 starts playing in your mind and, though you may not like Bono and his somewhat smug onstage persona, you can’t deny that this is a good song. It is from their 1983 album War and has a strong political tone to it. Obviously, everyone loves to talk politics when they’re drunk, so this is the right moment for this song and a few more glasses in the train.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – Snow (Hey Oh)
You’ve almost reached your destination and he bottle in your hand is slowly coming to its end. All of that brooding sadness suddenly becomes a gush of energy that is forcing you to dance in an uncontrollable (and slightly ridiculous) manner. Anthony Kiedis‘ twisting voice in our wintry mix perfectly describes your mood as the snow starts to fall outside. The Peppers’ song Snow is something of their comeback on the scene in 2006. It’s certainly not their best song (Breaking the Girl is) but it has a certain charm characteristic of this band.
Kings of Leon – Closer
You might argue that Kings of Leon don’t belong on this wintry mix, but you have no power here! The train has finally arrived and everything becomes far too real. You’re in a strange, unknown town and it’s both enticing and terrifying. You start to question yourself and your life’s choices. You remember the person you came to see. You start to wonder whether they’re even worth the trip. As the song Closer progresses, you realize that you should just go home and leave this visit to another time (or maybe never). You get back on the train.