Serotonin for the Soul: A Playlist for Comfort

Marjorie Blum

The past couple of weeks have truthfully been some of the most alarming and paralyzing weeks of my life with leaving my life at college to move back home amidst the largest public health crisis of our lifetime. However, even when the world is turning upside down, music can still serve as the connective tissue of the world, supporting and bridging communities together in this time of need.

I have compiled a shortlist of some songs that have given me solace in this confusing and stressful time in our lives in hopes that these songs, albums, and artists can bring that comfort into your own home, wherever that may be.

“bandaids” by keshi

Off of keshi’s latest EP, “bandaids” is led by a portentous acoustic accompanied by keshi’s emotionally vulnerable vocals to lead the listener through a story of heartbreak. The chorus, “I’m afraid that bandaids are no good for heart ache,” delicately tug at the listener’s heartstrings. Concluding with an ominous piano, “bandaids” leaves the listener with an unfulfilled void, but provides comfort to fill that void in the sense of reassurance that those in similar positions are not going through it alone. The entirety of keshi’s discography as a whole is full of consoling tracks that hold the listener’s hand and guide them through whatever hard time they are going through.

“Julia” by Lauv

I think it is quite obvious at this point that Lauv is one of my favorite artists, as I have somehow found a way to integrate him into almost every article I have written. Alas, he is, of course, one of the artists that I had to include in this playlist. “Julia,” off of Lauv’s new album ~how i’m feeling ~ that was fully released on March 6, 2020, is a painfully heart-breaking song that never fails to bring tears to my eyes upon each listen. Accompanied by an entrancing yet simple piano, Lauv’s emotionally raw vocals dictate the story of a relationship gone wrong, and regret felt afterward. “Julia” is my favorite new song off of the album, and truly a song to cry to when you just need to let it all out.

“Sweet Night” by V

Opening with a mellow acoustic carried by V’s honey-like vocals, “Sweet Night” eclipses any stress I am feeling, and replaces it with a feeling of comfort and security. V is one of few vocalists who can truly move me with just the sound of his voice. Even if that feeling only lasts for three minutes and thirty-four seconds — the length of the song — each millisecond brings its own consoling messages into my soul. The harmonious whistle that dissolves the end of the song leaves the listener feeling reassured, like the perfect sunset on a perfect day.

“Valentine” by COIN

Fresh off of COIN’s latest album, Dreamland, “Valentine”, originally released on Valentine’s Day, is a much more auditorily lighthearted song in contrast to the aforementioned songs. Beginning with the line that is then repeated throughout the song, “You ever love something so much it hurts,” this song tells the story of being so emotionally invested in a relationship that you end up falling apart, yet you continue to wait for the other person no matter what. With the frustration and lustfulness built into the lyrics juxtaposed with playful and lively instrumentals, “Valentine” provides a stellar example of a song that can lyrically say something so emotional, yet is perfectly contrasted with instrumentals that could be taken out of an early 2000s coming-of-age movie. Not many artists can pull this off, but time and time again, COIN continuously blows me away, and the entirety of Dreamland is an auditorily cinematic masterpiece.