Hello there, Happy Valentines Day. As you may have seen, last year I did a blog post in honor of this money making scheme/day to celebrate love where I listed ten unconventional love songs. I don’t know much about regular romance, so I wrote about some songs I like that I guess come close enough to being love songs, but would probably no way ever be in a film like 500 Days Of Summer. Well guess what, I’m doing another. I’ll try think of something different for next year, but for now here’s some more songs to alienate your Valentine with.
Nine Inch Nails-Closer.
I was once drunk randomly asking people their favourite love songs (probably with this list in mind) and someone replied with this, to which I just laughed and he said “it gets to the point”. There’s no denying that Trent Reznor’s ode to sex doesn’t beat around the bush and of all the songs in this list, this is probably the crudest and least romantic. “I want to fuck you like an animal”, isn’t romantic in a ‘The Notebook’ way (or maybe it is, I’ve not actually seen that film). The way Reznor talks of how making love to this person makes him perfect and brings him closer to God, shows some softer sentiment. It’s just that it always comes back to THAT line and is surrounded by pulsing electronic beats that are seductive, but maybe not kind and loving. If sex is the be all and end all to you when it comes to romance, then perhaps this is the song to dance to at your wedding (like Gary Numan did).
Million Dead-Smiling At Strangers On Trains.
This is a sweet song, for the line “if I’d known you weren’t so far away, I could’ve rode this train smiling”, as if Million Dead frontman Frank Turner (you might’ve heard of him) is saying that he could’ve gone through all the bad things in life, being happy, just as long as he’d known that he’s one day meet the person he’s singing about. That’s cute to say that one person can erase all the negative things one has gone through in life. It’s the most melodic song on Million Dead’s debut ‘A Song To Ruin’, but it still has some roughness with fuzzed up guitar and wailing vocals, but all together the elements make for an excitable mood, which is exactly the kind of mood you tend to be in when first falling for someone.
This song opens with a bombardment of drums and riffs, so it doesn’t seem like a love song at first sight and the Eastern feel that enters makes it more interesting, but not romantic. However the song gets smoother and more mellow with the instruments taking a chill pill and peaceful vocals come in to hint at some light and then the line “I’ll keep my seat on the edge of your mind” says that vocalist/guitarist Stephen Brodsky can be patient and even though his love me not be requited now, he has faith that they will always consider him, therefore he’ll always have a chance. It’s optimistic, which is always a good thing. It’s important to be hopeful as it’s not common that you’ll be with the one you love straight away, but you’ll have to wait. It’s worth waiting and you never know if that seat you have on their mind can become something more.
The Blood Brothers-I Know Where The Canaries And Crows Go.
“Why can’t we let our mouths devour each other? Why can’t we turn those miles into inches, letters into breath, years into seconds?”. So romantic. Blood Brothers vocalist Jordan Blilie wanting to spend as much time as possible, as close as possible with whoever he’s singing about. However he’s also screaming it like she’s just been murdered, so maybe not something you want to put on a Valentines Day mix. On top of that there’s the loud and jumpy elastic riffs that The Blood Brothers were pros at, slapping you silly and fellow vocalist Johnny Whitney joining Billie in a piercing scream-fest.
Aphex Twin-Girl/Boy Song.
This is unconventional because it doesn’t have any words/lyrics, so nothing to give away that it can be specifically described as a love song, but it just feels romantic. It’s filled with lush strings that are most joyful, kind of like you’re in love. To add why it’s not the most obvious love song in the world, it’s filled with rapid drum n bass shuffling, but that also adds to why it just feels romantic, as these breaks sound giddy, something you also may be when you’re into someone. The title hints that Richard David James, AKA Aphex Twin, intended it to feel like a love song, or that he was maybe even in love himself when he wrote it. The whole of the 1994’s ‘Richard D James Album’ feels like the soundtrack to a wonky, love fairy tale, but this song is where the album is at its most ecstatic, while being wonderfully weird, which is why it makes this list.
Every Time I Die-Romeo A Go-Go
“There’s a delicate love song in this” Every Time I Die vocalist Keith Buckley actually needs to point out in the song, and there is. Under the turbo fretwork, crunchy guitar stomps and frantic vocals is a story of a man trying really hard to win over someone despite being completely broken, seemingly physically. “I got this new black eye just for you. Your hopeless romantic now helplessly rheumatic”, paints a picture of someone determined to get to his lover and impress them through any means necessary. He’s making his way through every adversity and that is what you need to be willing to do for the love of your life.
The Fall Of Troy-F.C.P.R.E.M.I.X.
In the dating world you’re encouraged to play it cool and perhaps not let your feelings show, but here The Fall Of Troy say (albeit indirectly), suggest you wear your heart on your sleeve. “I don’t want to see the day my words cannot make it safe” and “too bad, no regrets”. Lyrics like this say that guitarist/vocalist Thomas Erak is fully aware of the risks in being forward and admitting your feelings, but he can’t help but let it known that he loves the subject of the song anyway. What do you follow, your heart, or what you think will win them over? As for why this probably doesn’t seem like a love song, there’s the vast technical guitar skills on display, which while thrilling isn’t as conventionally romantic as a piano or acoustic guitar, especially when it comes to the manic breakdown which collapses on itself at the speed of light, however after the chaos it comes back to the hook which delivers the killer lines that encourage you to be brave.
mewithoutYou-Bullet To Binary.
“When you laugh you’ll feel my breath there, filling up your lungs. And when you cry, those aren’t your tears but I’m there, falling down your cheek, and when you say you love him, taste me, I’m like poison on your tongue” these lyrics are intense, bitter and maybe even creepy even without Aaron Weiss ‘s pain stricken voice shouting them in a half spoken word, half yelling style. But underneath the madness is love. Love can make you crazy, and there’s definitely love in this song, it’s just coming across as obsessive, which is never a good look. However you can’t deny that the love is there, it’s just that it sounds like it’s ruined Weiss and sometimes you’ve got to be careful of falling too in love with someone. Here though, at least a great song has come out of heartache.
“I want to taste your breasts and know God” wow, maybe not as crude as Closer, but there’s still something rated r (or maybe just 12a) about that. However it’s kind of lovely at the same time and speaks for itself why, as if saying that spending a night with person would be like reaching a heavenly state. It also helps that Jarboe’s vocals are gorgeous, being tender and angelic. Also the music is danceable, bubbling yet hazy electronica, being the perfect twisted 90’s love song.
Team America: World Police-Pearl Harbor Sucked.
Last year I ended the list by putting a song from Final Fantasy VI, so this year I’m topping that by putting in ‘Pearl Harbor Sucked’ from the Satire comedy, ‘Team America: World Police’. It’s a love song and it’s definitely an unconventional one. Protagonist Gary Johnston sings about how much he misses and needs Lisa Jones by comparing his feelings for her to how much he dislikes Michael Bay’s ‘Pearl Harbor’, killing two birds with one stone. “I miss you like Michael Bay missed the mark, when he made Pearl Harbor”, “I need you like Ben Affleck needs acting school, he was terrible in that film”. These lines are romantic for Lisa and insulting to Mr’s Bay and Affleck. What film would you bash in a song, in order to profess your love to someone? I think I’m going to write a love song influenced by The Room (hi Lee). Maybe say I love how bad they are.
Thanks for reading. What are your favourite unconventional love songs?
To read last year’s list click here https://maxcussons.wordpress.com/2014/02/14/my-top-ten-unconventional-love-songs/