We all have these, songs that mean something to us, that bring back memories of good times or bad times, or that we use in certain ways. I don't know if I'm odd in that I listen to darker music when I feel low to the stuff I'll put on when I'm happy. The alternative just doesn't work for me at all.
I'll chuck these songs into two camps, emotional and chronological. The two are linked of course...
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds: Lime Tree Arbour
This is the song we had played at our wedding and I think it really encapsulates a sort of grown up love, which is something Nick Cave's very good at. One of the reason's I like his work is that it's very far away from the juvenile posturing you used to see on Top of the Pops (yes that dates me, so what?). This song is very simple, but it really defines how I feel about my beloved.
The Mission: Wasteland
When we first started going out Eve gave me a mix tape of Goth songs: 'Goths are better with dreams than children' ran down its spine. We'd recently played Mage: the Ascension and the songs were all based around the idea for the plot. This is the song that stood out the most and the opening, Wayne Hussey's voice 'I still believe in God but God no longer believes in me' still gives me chills. It reminds me of that sudden first flush of love, the careless days that frame the start of most relationships (excluding ones where you have to sneak about and fear being caught).
All About Eve: Shelter from the Rain
This song hits me on many levels. It's another song I heard soon after Eve and I started dating and there's a stately, mournful air that's always seemed to suit both of us. That's entirely subjective, so take it as you will; she'd probably have quite a different answer. The lyric 'I'll shelter you if you shelter me again', really resonates with me; if songs convey the meaning of love, then that seems to be it (it sort of echoes the Nick Cave lyric of 'there is a hand that protects me and I do love her so' but it's the first time that's occured to me).
Foo Fighters: The Pretender
Another of those defiance songs (I love songs that sound defiant, that spit and scratch and say 'fuck you we won't just take this lying down') and possibly the healthiest. The lyrics here just soar, full of venom but light as the breeze. It's energetic, it makes me want to do things, to defeat my foes and get the best sort of triumph.
Abney Park: Chronofax/Letters Between a Little Boy and Himself as an Adult
This song is one I have a love/hate relationship with. It really chokes me up and its one of the few songs I avoid when I'm feeling bad because it doesn't make me want to go on. Instead it hits me in the fear pocket - encapsulating my worry that I've achieved nothing with my life (after all, I am a Thursday's Child, I have far to go).
Voltaire: The Beast of Pirate's Bay
Lastly, let's have something happy. I've already talked a little about my love of Voltaire. This is one of the tracks that makes me happy, just the right mix of happy, sinister and ridiculous with a tune that just keeps me going.