It's that time of year again, guys! When I compile the best unrequited love songs, break-up songs, terrible relationship songs, "forget romance" songs, and "someday my prince will come" songs added to my collection the previous year and present them in mix format for you all to enjoy.
It's always interesting to see what types of songs I end up with. This year's selection ended up being fairly upbeat and optimistic, with not a lot of truly sad, sad songs in the mix. (But don't worry, melancholy friends, there are definitely a few.) As a whole, the list is a lot more "we'll make it through!" than "my life is over!" It's just where it landed this year.
Without further ado, here's the 2014 Anti-Love mix, complete with download link at the bottom.
1. Kiss You (Roomie)
I always like to start my mixes off with happy songs about falling in love. Because as difficult and sucky as unrequited love is, there's still something really fun and exciting about loving someone. This is my favorite cover version of this song. It makes me want to dance.
2. I Wanna Dance With Somebody Who Loves Me (Whitney Houston)
Speaking of dancing... I rediscovered this song this past year and realized I didn't have it in my music library. FIXED. It's so cheerful and happy but the lyrics are so sad and wistful, and you all probably know I'm a sucker for happy-sounding songs about sad things. So of course this one had to be in this mix.
3. Dumb (Tich)
A song about realizing you might have missed out on your chance because you rejected someone and then later developed feelings for them. It's a fun dancey little tune, and I really enjoy the right-before-the-chorus lyric of: "You make me smile... a lot."
4. When I Fall In Love (Michael Ball)
An old classic from one of my favorite vocalists. I've probably even included other versions of this song on previous Anti-Love Mixes or URLSCDs... but it's always worth including again. A beautiful, wistful song about truly falling in love someday.
5. Hello (Paul Anka)
One of the albums I kind of fell in love with this past year was Paul Anka's "Rock Swings," in which he does smooth jazzy versions of mostly rock songs. Here he covers Lionel Richie's "Hello," and I love it. It's a little less mournful than the original, which makes it seem less like an emo stalker is singing it and more like playful flirting.
6. Let Me Love You (Jacob Artist, from Glee)
I love this version of the song so much more than the original. It's a sweet and gentle and tender ballad, as it should be, instead of a vaguely dancey bland pop number. Sung like this, it's one of those songs like Enrique Iglesias' "Hero" that easily melts a girl's heart.
7. Misery Loves My Company (Farah Alvin)
I found this song on a YouTube video of a concert somewhere and fell in love with it. I was pretty hyped when I found it was on SoundCloud. It's got a great "torch song" sound and wonderfully jaded lyrics. Super satisfying to sing along to when I'm feeling miserable.
8. Against All Odds (Darren Criss, from Glee)
I found this to be one of the most moving performances on the show in a long time. Darren Criss has a way of infusing his sad songs with a great deal of emotion and making me really listen to the lyrics. As far as sad love song goes, this is a classic, and I love his rendition of it.
9. When I Was Your Man (Sam Tsui)
It's not an Anti-Love Mix without a Sam cover. :-) Really, though, this is one of my favorites he's done in a long time. I hadn't heard the original version when I first listened to this, and I love the sad lyrics and the simple melody, and Sam sings it with a satisfying degree of angst.
10. Manhattan (Sara Bareilles)
I've written about this song before, so I'll just say this song gets more heartbreaking and emotionally devastating every time I listen to it.
11. Should've Gone To Bed (Plain White T's)
And after just a few sad, dark songs, we begin our climb upward toward happier times, or at least happier sounds. This is a classic theme of the Anti-Love Mixes: the "I've had too many drinks and now I'm calling an ex, which is a stupid idea" song. (There are quite a few of these. And I own several.)
12. Boomerang (Barenaked Ladies)
And, on the flip side, here's an "we broke up but I'm pretty sure we'll get back together" song. It's fairly optimistic, unless, of course, you take the view that they're never going to get back together, in which case it's kind of tragically misguided.
13. Cups (Anna Kendrick)
And on to what is maybe my favorite Anti-Love Mix song category (and the busiest, this year): the songs about surviving break-ups. This song is maybe even instigating a breakup -- saying, "Well, off I go traveling the world. You can come along if you want. I'd like it if you did, and you'll miss me if you don't. But I AM going." I love the light breeziness of it and how nonchalant she is about just taking off.
14. It's a Beautiful Day (Michael Buble)
This is such a delightfully cheerful song about moving on from a not-good relationship. It's hard for me to listen to this song and not dance around in my chair.
15. Too Late (Roomie)
This is a Roomie original that I just discovered about a month ago and fell in love with. A happy, joyful song about the sort of perverse joy of an ex who dumped you returning to you only for you to realize you really don't want them back. Take THAT!
16. I'm Still Standing (Elton John)
I have also written about this song in the past few weeks. It seems like a good "HA, you couldn't break me!" song to end the mix on.
...Well, mostly end the mix. I do have one more.
17. Reindeer(s) Are Better Than People (from Frozen)
A short song to remind us all that sometimes people are just kinda lame.
Want the whole mix? You can get it here.